Stories

The IRE Resource Center is a major research library containing more than 27,000 investigative stories.

Most of our stories are not available for download but can be easily ordered by contacting the Resource Center directly at 573-882-3364 or rescntr@ire.org where a researcher can help you pinpoint what you need.

Search results for "Afghanistan" ...

  • The Afghanistan Paper

    A confidential trove of government documents obtained by the Washington Post revealed that senior U.S. government officials systematically failed to tell the truth about the war in Afghanistan for the duration of the 18-year conflict. The documents, obtained in response to two FOIA lawsuits, showed in raw, unfiltered detail that senior officials privately concluded the war had become unwinnable even as three U.S. presidents and other government leaders kept insisting publicly - year after year - they were making progress and would prevail.
  • The Traffickers: The Girl in the Window

    The Traffickers is an investigative documentary series which traces the global trafficking routes of some of the world’s most sought after commodities: Gold, exotic animals, sex, even human body parts - anything can be bought for a price. The aim was ambitious - to give an exclusive guide to the global black market world, with high production values, excellent cinematography, dynamic story-telling and outstanding journalism. The series is presented by Nelufar Hedayat, who herself was trafficked as a child refugee from war-torn Afghanistan. During the course of filming, Nelufar visited 22 different countries, criss-crossing the world to follow the story. The Dark Side of Adoption reveals how American couples adopting babies from the DRC can be caught up in an adoption scam which hoodwinks unsuspecting parents into giving up their children.
  • Saving Mes Aynak

    "Saving Mes Aynak" follows Afghan archaeologist Qadir Temori as he races against time to save a 5,000-year-old archaeological site in Afghanistan from imminent demolition. A Chinese state-owned mining company is closing in on the ancient site, eager to harvest $100 billion dollars worth of copper buried directly beneath the archaeological ruins. Only 10% of Mes Aynak has been excavated, though, and some believe future discoveries at the site have the potential to redefine the history of Afghanistan and the history of Buddhism itself. Qadir Temori and his fellow Afghan archaeologists face what seems an impossible battle against the Chinese, the Taliban and local politics to save their cultural heritage from likely erasure. https://vimeo.com/158548175 Password: KTQprivate
  • Ghost Schools

    In America’s long, bloody, and frustrating war in Afghanistan, the U.S. government has consistently trumpeted one major victory: education. More than a billion dollars was poured into building schools and educating Afghan children, in part to prevent the Taliban from recruiting a new generation of soldiers. But a BuzzFeed News investigation found those claims to be massively exaggerated, riddled with ghost schools, teachers, and students that exist only on paper.
  • Irradiated

    McClatchy reported for the first time that the push to win the Cold War left a legacy of death on American soil: At least 33,480 former nuclear workers who received compensation are dead. The death toll is more than four times the number of American casualties in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.
  • The Drone Papers

    The Intercept obtained a cache of secret documents detailing the inner workings of the U.S. military’s assassination program in Afghanistan, Yemen, and Somalia. The documents, provided by a whistleblower within the intelligence community who worked on the drone program, offer an unprecedented glimpse into the U.S. military’s kill/capture operations during a key time in the evolution of the drone wars. After six months of reporting by a team of seven, The Intercept published The Drone Papers, a multimedia package of eight articles that revealed a deeply conflicted U.S. military and intelligence community secretly driving a program that kills far more people than the intended targets, causing serious harm to U.S. moral standing and national security. https://theintercept.com/drone-papers/
  • Military suicides

    Canada’s Afghanistan mission officially ended in 2014, but the consequences of Canada’s longest war are still reverberating through military communities across the nation. The number of Canadian soldiers and veterans who have taken their lives after their Afghanistan deployment had been a tightly guarded military secret until exposed by The Globe and Mail. The newspaper’s series, The Unremembered, takes readers beyond the suicide toll, revealing serious flaws in the military’s mental health-care system and the devastating effects on soldiers. http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/the-unremembered-a-compilation-of-our-coverage-on-canadian-soldier-suicides/article27546298/
  • U.S. military personnel have been convicted of $50 million worth of crimes in Iraq and Afghanistan

    U.S. military personnel committed crimes worth more than $50 million during their deployments in Iraq and Afghanistan, capitalizing on the Defense Department’s decision to depend on cash transactions there without any genuine oversight, a Center for Public Integrity investigation found.
  • Missed Treatment: Soldiers With Mental Health Issues Dismissed For ‘Misconduct’

    We revealed for the first time that the Army has kicked out tens of thousands of soldiers who came back from Iraq and Afghanistan with mental health problems and traumatic brain injuries, and taken away their benefits, on the grounds that those soldiers committed some sort of “misconduct”– despite the fact that Congress passed a law in 2009 to try to prevent it. Our stories were not only the first ones that revealed this crucial information: Army officials told us that until we asked and pushed for these statistics under FOIA, they never compiled them, period.Our report also showed that a top-level Army investigation, into allegations that soldiers were being mistreated, was essentially a whitewash. And we let the public hear, for the first time, actual psychotherapy sessions between a troubled soldier and Army psychiatrists. You can actually hear the therapists belittle the soldier and shrug off his mental health problems. http://www.npr.org/2015/10/28/451146230/missed-treatment-soldiers-with-mental-health-issues-dismissed-for-misconduct
  • The Narco-Terror Trap

    This project traces the Drug Enforcement Administration’s use of a little-known statute of the Patriot Act to create a role for itself in the war on terror, based largely on unsubstantiated assertions that terrorists were using the drug trade to finance attacks against the United States. The statute, adopted with broad bi-partisan support, allows the D.E.A. to pursue so-called narco-terrorists anywhere in the world, even when none of their alleged crimes occurred on American soil. Between 2002 and 2008, the agency’s budget for foreign operations increased by some 75 percent, which supported expansions into Afghanistan, Eastern Europe, and West Africa. But an examination of the D.E.A.’s narco-terrorism cases reveals that most unraveled as they proceeded through court. The cases relied heavily on sting operations, and the only evidence of any links between terrorists and traffickers was concocted by the D.E.A., which used highly-paid informants to lure targets into staged narco-terrorism conspiracies. The first piece tells the story of three small-time smugglers from Mali who were arrested in West Africa, transported to New York and accused as narco-terrorists with links to Al-Qaeda. It explains how the D.E.A.’s narco-terrorism campaign began in the arrest-first-ask-questions-later period that followed 9/11. And it details the negligible contributions that the effort, whose total cost remains unknown, has made to keeping the country safe from either terrorists or drug traffickers. Nearly three years after the Malian’s arrest, a judge found that the men were not linked to Al-Qaeda, and that they had been motivated to participate in the D.E.A.’s fake conspiracy by an informant’s offer to pay them millions of dollars. The second piece uses an interactive comic – ProPublica’s first – to bring a sharper focus to the patterns in the DEA’s cases. It uses five different narco-terrorism operations in five different parts of the world. The interactivity of the comic allows readers to see how the agency’s stings use essentially the same script in order to make disparate targets fit the designated crime. https://projects.propublica.org/graphics/narco