That is what The Australian says an audit by the the US Special Inspector-General for Iraq Reconstruction of the former Coalition Provisional Authority office in Hilla, Iraq, has uncovered. The newspaper says the report details bundles of money stashed in filing cabinets, a US soldier who gambled away thousands of dollars, and stacks of newly minted notes distributed without receipts.
The findings come almost a year after Stuart Bowen, the Inspector-General, found that more than $9 billion of Iraq's oil revenues, which was disbursed in 2004 by the then US-led CPA, could not be accounted for.
The audit, released on Wednesday ... describes a country in the months after the overthrow of Saddam Hussein awash with US dollars and a "wild west" atmosphere where even multi-million-dollar contracts were paid for in cash ...The New York Times reports that the new audit found problems "in an area that includes half the land mass in Iraq, with new findings in the southern and central provinces of Anbar, Karbala, Najaf, Wasit, Babil, and Qadisiya." Read On
The huge sums in cash were paid out with little or no supervision and often without any paperwork, the reconstruction spending audit found. The report found problems with almost 2000 contracts worth $US88.1 million.