AN ODD PROCUREMENT….This story is just plain strange:
In Iraq, a nation awash with hundreds of thousands of AK-47 assault rifles, the U.S.-led occupation authority is planning to buy and import 34,000 more of the ubiquitous weapons to equip a new Iraqi army.
….Yet U.S. forces who seized control of Iraq in April have discovered vast stockpiles of new, never-fired AK-47s, which U.S. military officials have said were being deliberately warehoused for a future Iraqi army.
At one compound of eight concrete warehouses that a company of the 10th Engineer Battalion found in central Baghdad in mid-April, Los Angeles Times reporters watched soldiers form a human chain to fill a truck bed with AK-47s so new the soldiers’ hands turned orange from the packing grease.
….The following day, U.S. Marines who were securing the city of Tikrit north of Baghdad announced that they had found 100,000 AK-47s there, 80,000 of them in a hospital. And in the months that have followed, there have been almost daily reports of U.S. military units seizing quantities of AK-47s both large and small, new and used.
….The civil authority official, however, asserted that the makes, models and manufacturers of the new weapons seized had “slight differences” depending on the nation where they were made, and that the goal of the agency’s AK-47 purchase was to standardize the arms.
So instead of modern American-made rifles, we’re buying AK-47s, a weapon made exclusively in former Soviet Bloc countries. In addition, the Joint Task Force was unaware of the choice, and we’re doing it despite the fact that Iraq is practically overflowing with brand new AK-47s.
Very peculiar, no?