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Washington Post: Big Budgets, Little Oversight in War Zones

Authors: Scott Higham, Jessica Schulberg, and Steven Rich
May 4, 2014

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"The story of [nonprofit corporation International Relief and Development] reflects the course of America's ambitions in Iraq and Afghanistan, which started with great enthusiasm and consumed tremendous resources, only to see many hopes go awry. Nation-building projects aimed at supplanting insurgents and securing the peace that looked promising on paper in Washington proved to be difficult to execute in dangerous and unpredictable war zones."

In 1998, an ordained minister with the United Church of Christ and his wife from the war-wrecked region of Bosnia-Herzegovina began a humble international humanitarian effort out of a modest office in downtown Washington.

After the United States launched the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the mom-and-pop nonprofit corporation boldly ramped up, undertaking some of the federal government's biggest and most ambitious projects in the battle zones, everything from building roads to funding wheat production.

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