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ThisCantBeHappening! Wins It's Sixth Project Censored Award in It's Six-Year History

This time it's for what Project Censored is calling the "second most important unreported story of the year"

 

ThisCantBeHappening! has just learned that the TCBH! Collective has won its sixth Project Censored Award in as many years since the news site was established in June 2010.

This year's award, for the "second most important unreported news story of the 2016-17 year," is for a piece run on August 17, 2016 authored by Dave Lindorff headlined: Not just $600 toilet lids or unusable F-35s: The Pentagon Money Pit: $6.5 Trillion in Unaccountable Army Spending, and No DOD Audit for the Past Two Decades

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As Project Censored, the organization that issues these awards each year, puts it in describing the story:
 

According to a July 2016 report by the Department of Defense’s Office of Inspector General (DoDIG), over the past two decades the US Army has accumulated $6.5 trillion in expenditures that cannot be accounted for, because two government offices—the Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Army and the DoD’s Defense Finance and Accounting Service—“did not prioritize correcting the system deficiencies that caused errors . . . and did not provide sufficient guidance for supporting system-generated adjustments.” In the bureaucratic language of the report, the expenditures themselves are referred to as “unsupported adjustments” and the lack of complete and accurate records of them are described as “material weakness.” In other words, as Dave Lindorff reported, the DoD “has not been tracking or recording or auditing all of the taxpayer money allocated by Congress—what it was spent on, how well it was spent, or where the money actually ended up.”

In 1996, Congress enacted legislation that required all government agencies—including not only the Department of Defense but also the federal government’s departments of education, veterans affairs, and housing and urban development, for instance—to undergo annual audits. As Thomas Hedges reported for the Guardian in March 2017, “the Pentagon has exempted itself without consequence for 20 years now, telling the Government Accountability Office (GAO) that collecting and organizing the required information for a full audit is too costly and time-consuming.” (For Project Censored’s previous coverage of the Pentagon’s “inauditable” budget, see “Pentagon Awash in Money Despite Serious Audit Problems,” Censored 2015, pp. 59–60.)

As Lindorff wrote, in fiscal year 2015 total federal discretionary spending—which includes everything from education, to housing and community development, to Medicare and other health programs—amounted to just over $1.1 trillion, and the $6.5 trillion in unaccountable Army expenditures represents approximately fifteen years’ worth of military spending.



story | by Dr. Radut