Pentagon IG: Unresolved Problems are Costing Money, and Making it Harder to Save Lives
Article from For Liberty by Norm Leahy.
The Pentagon’s inspector general has issued an annual review of unresolved issues at the department and found the backlog – and cost, in human and dollar terms – of those nagging problems is getting bigger:
…the number of open DoD OIG recommendations has grown from 1,581 on March 31, 2019, to 1,602. Of these recommendations, 51 have identified potential monetary benefits totaling $6.5 billion.
Among the unresolved issues are 189 in the military’s intelligence operations, including:
…supply chain risk management program for nuclear command, control, and communication systems; combatant command insider threat programs; processes for determining and fulfilling intelligence requirements for counterterrorism; DoD oversight of combatant command intelligence interrogation approaches and techniques; and the capacity of the Military Services to fill combatant command requests for counterintelligence support.
More troubling to the health and welfare of military personnel is a continuing lack of critical data reporting on suicides. According to the inspector general, incident reports failed to include:
…highly relevant information from other sources, such as medical records, law enforcement investigations, or command investigations, that could provide a better understanding of the circumstances and stressors related to suicidal behavior.
The IG’s office says there has been an “increase in suicide rates among active-duty military members, as well as higher‐than‐expected rates in the National Guard, compared to the U.S. population.” More detailed, incident reports are “necessary for developing effective suicide prevention policy and programs to reduce suicide rates across the force.”