Lost and found with Iraq's billions

October 31, 2011

I read with anticipation Paul Richter's article "Lost Iraqi Billions Found" (Oct. 28) with the assurance these funds would be accounted for and shown to be spent for purposes intended. Unfortunately, Mr. Richter seems to list the billions not found.

We read about $100 bills shipped in shrink wrapped bundles (was this to insure, using cash, its spending would not be tracked, as in drug laundered cash?). Then we read that the "audit" found that "most" had been turned over to Iraqi authorities. Someone's determined that "sufficient evidence" indicates almost all of the cash was turned over to the Iraq's Central Bank. Readers should note we are talking about cash being turned over. Furthermore, we read about a missing $217 million to defense officials stored in a vault at a palace and $150 million given to the Iraqi finance minister at an airport.

Shouldn't the article title have been "Lost Iraqi billions still not found?" It is no wonder that Iraqi officials are eagerly awaiting the audit report. They are worried if the lost billions, still not found, will be traced to their pockets.

Charles Herr, Baltimore

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