(CBS News) Four former U.S. military advisors in Afghanistan testified to Congress Tuesday that the Army general in charge of the NATO Training Mission there tried to delay an investigation into alleged human suffering and corruption at Dawood National Military Hospital, funded primarily with U.S. tax dollars.
The military whistleblowers, two of them still on active duty, say they discovered "Auschwitz"-like atrocities in 2010 at the hospital for wounded Afghan soldiers: open vats of blood draining from soldier's wounds, feces on the floor, and Afghan doctors and nurses demanding bribes to provide patients with food and basic care. According to the witnesses, patients routinely starved to death, were operated on without sedatives, and died of simple infections.
Army Colonel Mark Fassl was NATO's Training Mission Afghanistan Command Inspector General in 2010. He says when he requested the inspector general to investigate the hospital, he was admonished by the three-star general in charge, Lt. General William Caldwell.
"His first response to me was 'how could we make that request with elections coming?'" Fassl told a House oversight subcommittee Tuesday.Continue »
(CBS News) Congressional investigators and observers in the U.S. military allege that injured Afghan soldiers at Dawood National Military Hospital routinely died of simple infections and were allegedly even starved to death as Afghan doctors and nurses demanded bribes for food and basic care. Congressional investigators and the Inspector General are looking into whether some military officials took steps to cover up investigations into the hospital's conditions.
At least $180 million was spent by the U.S. government on the hospital over nine years, according to congressional investigators.
U.S. officials began documenting rampant corruption at the hospital as far back as 2006 including stolen pharmaceuticals and counterfeit medicine being used on Afghan soldiers. By 2010, military officials on site began documenting maggots on open wounds, patients starved for weeks, surgery performed with no sedatives and bedsores so deep that bones showed through.
Several military whistleblowers have told congressional investigators that some military higher-ups, including Lt. General William Caldwell, took steps to delay investigations into the hospital in 2010 because it might prove politically embarrassing. The Pentagon didn't comment on behalf of Lt. Gen. Caldwell, stating "we do not comment on matters currently being investigated by the Inspector General."Continue »
From tax write-offs for gambling losses, vacation homes, and luxury yachts; to subsidies for ranches and estates, billions of your tax dollars are supporting the lifestyles of the rich and famous. And a new report from fiscal conservative Sen. Tom Coburn (R-OK) counts the ways.Continue »
A company whose subsidiary received $118 million in stimulus grant money from the U.S. Department of Energy to build new electric car batteries has now been removed from trading on NASDAQ.Continue »
The troubled Oklahoma City-based charity Feed the Children has slashed its reported annual income by more than half for 2010. CBS News investigative correspondent Sharyl Attkisson exposed extensive problems at the charity in a CBS News Investigation, including unrelated allegations of financial impropriety and conflicts of interest raised in lawsuits between the charity's founder and its board of directors.
Now, the charity is reporting a dramatic drop in the value of its donations, down from $1.2 billion in 2009 to just $538 million for 2010. The change comes partly due to a change in accounting methods.Continue »
The National Rifle Association (NRA) has asked Congress to investigate allegations that the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) allowed thousands of weapons to cross the US border into Mexico, knowing they were likely to be acquired and used by Mexico's drug cartels.
Wayne LaPierre, Executive Vice President of the NRA, told CBS News that his group has heard from many of its law enforcement members who are outraged at the so-called "gunwalking" by ATF.
"They wanted to prove that there were guns flowing to Mexico, so they set up an illegal pipeline to send guns to Mexico," speculates LaPierre. "When does it stop being law enforcement and start being a criminal enterprise? To prove there's islamic terrorists are they going to start manufacturing and selling explosives? It just makes no sense."
It was ATF agents from the agency's Phoenix office who blew the whistle on the controversial practice to CBS News, to Senator Charles Grassley (R-Iowa), and on blogs such as "Clean Up ATF". The gunwalking was allegedly allowed in a case known as "Fast and Furious" out of Phoenix, and also allegely allowed in a case known as "Wide Receiver" out of Tucson and supervised by Phoenix.Continue »
In Switzerland, the government ordered a freeze today on any assets Qaddafi may have there. In the U.S., the Treasury asked banks to watch for any suspicious transactions involving Libyan accounts.
Qaddafi has ruled his oil-rich country for more than 40 years - but how much is he worth? Chief investigative correspondent Armen Keteyian reports government officials are still trying to figure out exactly how rich the Libyan leader and his family are. But one intelligence source told CBS News their wealth is estimated to be "in excess of $20 billion."Continue »
Updated 2/22/11, 5:30pm to include a statement from Fluor.The Department of Energy spent $43 million in a failed effort to treat and re-package 28.5 cubic meters of radioactive sludge at the Hanford nuclear production site in Washington state according to a new report from the Energy Department's Inspector General.
The amount of sludge, 28.5 cubic meters, is about equal to the water that would fill a small backyard above-ground swimming pool.Continue »