1. Corruption in Afghanistan is widespread
The U.S. regularly deals with Afghan President Hamid Karzai's brother, Ahmed Wali Karzai, who "is widely understood to be corrupt and a narcotics trafficker," one cable notes. The New York Times reported last October that Ahmed Wali was on the CIA payroll.
Also, the Karzais do not have a monopoly on corruption in the country: Another cable notes that Afghanistan's vice president visited the United Arab Emirates last year carrying $52 million in cash, "without revealing the money's origin or destination," according to another cable. The vice president has publicly denied taking cash out of the country.