On Capitol Hill, the top government watchdog for Afghanistan reconstruction told lawmakers Wednesday that U.S. officials have routinely lied to the American public throughout the U.S.-led war in Afghanistan, now in its 19th year. Special Inspector General John F. Sopko was testifying to the House Foreign Affairs Committee.
John Sopko: “The problem is there is a disincentive, really, to tell the truth. And when we talk about mendacity, when we talk about lying, it’s not just by lying about a particular program. It’s lying by omissions, by saying, 'Oh, I can't tell you about the casualties,’ or 'I can't tell you about how good the Afghans [inaudible] weapons,’ or 'I can't tell you this and that.’ Turns out that everything that’s bad news has been classified over the last few years.”
Last month, The Washington Post published excerpts from a confidential trove of documents that revealed how senior U.S. officials have repeatedly lied about the war’s progress while hiding evidence the war had become unwinnable.