July 16, 2014
The U.S. government watchdog charged with overseeing aid to Afghanistan has recommended delaying the delivery of additional cargo aircraft to the nascent Afghan Air Force (AAF). John Sopko, special inspector-general for Afghanistan reconstruction (SIGAR), said the AAF may not need all the C-130 airplanes to be provided by the U.S. military in a deal worth over $100 million.
The U.S. military has already delivered two C-130 cargo aircraft, with plans to deliver two more. In a July 10 letter to Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and other top U.S. military officials, Sopko questioned whether the AAF was making full use of the aircraft. He said elimination of a single C-130 could save U.S. taxpayers up to $40.5 million. SIGAR disclosed the contents of the letter on July 16.