The Hill (TheHill.com)By Brian FungThe House Intelligence Committee approved a measure Monday to require the Pentagon to provide a full accounting of the NSA’s use of military assets in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The measure would require the Defense Department to submit a report by March 30 detailing how the US military has used military assets since the end of the Iraq War, as well as the amount of money it has spent on equipment for the US troops and their families.
“We are deeply concerned about the impact the military’s use on the Afghan and Iraqi populations has had on the security of their own and their fellow citizens,” committee ranking member Adam Schiff, D-Calif., said in a statement.
“This is an opportunity to get a full picture of how the U.S. military has been using military assets, including air power, in Iraq.”
The measure was proposed by Rep. Adam Smith, D and a senior member of the House Intelligence panel.
The measure was introduced in February, but the measure stalled in the Senate.
The Pentagon has already made clear that it will comply with the House measure, but there are still a number of issues it must address, including the extent to which it is sharing with the committees the information it has collected and the number of times it has deployed military assets.
Rep. Adam Schiff on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, February 18, 2021.
(Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)In addition, the committee is asking the Pentagon whether it is using military forces in Afghanistan and Iraq to help the government of Iraqi President Nouri al-Maliki and his Shiite-dominated government fight ISIS and other insurgent groups.
The White House has said it is not concerned about sharing military information with the panel, and has argued that it has no desire to share the information because it does not want to make it public.
The House panel, however, is not alone in asking for more details.
In June, a bipartisan group of senators sent a letter to Defense Secretary Jim Mattis asking him to provide more information on the use of troops and equipment in Iraq.
Adam Gabbard, D, a member of Congress from Hawaii, and Mike Pompeo, R-Kan., also asked Mattis to provide additional details on the deployment of military forces, particularly the number and type of military personnel deployed and the costs associated with those deployments.
Mattis, in a written response to the senators, said he would “look into their concerns.”
He added that he is committed to providing Congress with a full and accurate accounting of how we have used our military assets and the cost of those assets.