By U.S. Air Force photo by Master Sgt. Donald R. Allen - https://www.dvidshub.net/image/6801702/afghanistan-evacuation, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=109296374

Since before the final disastrous Biden retreat from Afghanistan on August 31, the State Department (State) has been systematically removing from public view or reacting over 100,000 pieces of online content on Afghanistan, ostensibly to protect Afghan identities from Taliban retribution.

State made a similar request to the Defense Department, spokesman John Kirby confirmed Monday, resulting in the removal of 124,000 images and 17,000 videos from the DVIDS site.


However, the Special Inspector General for Afghan Reconstruction (SIGAR) isn’t buying the State Department story.

Speaking at the Military Reporters and Editors conference, John Sopko told reporters that the State Department has requested some reports be taken down from SIGAR’s site, or some reports redacted. He added:

As we report in today’s quarterly report, shortly after the fall of Kabul, the State Department wrote to me and other oversight agencies requesting that we, quote-unquote, temporarily suspend access to all of our audit inspection and financial reports.

He continued:

The protection of Afghans and legitimate risk of harm is not an issue to quibble over, and something our agency is respected over the 10 years that I’ve been there. But despite repeated requests, the State Department was never able to describe any specific threats to individuals that were supposedly contained in our reports. Nor did State ever explain how removing our reports now from public dissemination would possibly protect anyone, since many of those reports were years old, and already extensively disseminated worldwide.

Military Times reported Sopko as saying that “he initially accepted the request and pulled down reports, at the height of the evacuation, thinking the request would be temporary. But recently, he added, State sent him another letter, requesting another 2,400 items to remove.” It added:

One of the requests, he said, was to remove any mention of Ashraf Ghani ― the Afghan president who escaped as the Taliban closed in on Kabul ― from the SIGAR site.

“Now, I’m sure President Ghani may wish to be excised from the annals of history, but I don’t believe he faces any additional threat, or is there any threat to any other Afghan by mentioning his name in our reports,” Sopko said. 

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of AmericanActionNews.com




Paul Crespo is the Managing Editor of American Defense News. A defense and national security expert, he served as a Marine Corps officer and as a military attaché with the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) at US embassies worldwide. Paul holds degrees from Georgetown, London, and Cambridge Universities. He is also CEO of SPECTRE Global Risk, a security advisory firm, and President of the Center for American Defense Studies, a national security think tank.

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Logan Hensley
Logan Hensley
10 months ago

We can NO LONGER TRUST ANYTHING OUT OF OUR OWN GOVERNMENT. TRULY TRAGIC TIMES, THAT AREN’T GOING TO END WELL.

robert
robert
10 months ago

is state worried about the afghans they have turned over or have they got more to kill off???

john clark
john clark
10 months ago
Reply to  robert

they are only worried about themselves!

Leslie Bryant
Leslie Bryant
10 months ago

Taking down SIGAR Investigative Reports done by Mr Sopko that were World Class and very detailed for the Afghanistan War sounds like a Biden State Department cover up and cover our ass move! This is the same Biden State Department that did not care about its US Citizens or Foreign Service Nationals! What a major Clusterfxck by Biden, Harris, the Department of State and Department of Defense! All should be fired!!

Jake Rittenour
Jake Rittenour
10 months ago
Reply to  Leslie Bryant

I’m afraid it’s WORSE THAN THAT.
These problems go FAR beyond “incompetence”.
The amount of EVIL Upon the World now is UNPRECEDENTED.

alfie
alfie
10 months ago
Reply to  Jake Rittenour

The phrase they like to use is ‘god before country’. This really means ‘ VATICAN before the USA’. This is TREASON. The word TRAITOR was carefully picked, and accurately so.
The “C” traitors say that Trump the American patriot has ‘orange hair’. This means he is not one of their fellow “C” traitors. Hitlery has been in bed with the Catholics for 40 years. Hitler was Catholic, and see what he did for Germany.
Remember NAFTA that Bill signed. When NAFTA was signed, money and jobs went straight to the VATICAN with a giant sucking sound, and the Clintons bank account just got bigger, and bigger, and bigger.

Jawad
Jawad
10 months ago
Reply to  alfie

Hitler was likely RAISED Catholic but the demented old fool abandoned Christianity and forgiveness to embrace the ancient Germanic idol of REVENGE. This is why he got along so famously well with Islam.