Flying These Planes Cost $2 Million an Hour

The  Alenia C-27J is an Italian cargo aircraft.

The Alenia C-27J is an Italian cargo aircraft. Wikimedia Commons

Twenty turboprops for Afghanistan's Air Force cost $486 million, flew only 234 hours.

In 2008, the Defense Department spent $486 million to buy twenty G222 (C-27A) twin turboprop aircraft from Alenia North America. The planes were for the Afghanistan Air Force, which flew a grand total of only 234 hours – at a cost of slightly more than $2 million an hour – before the project was terminated, the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) said in a report released this week.

The reason: Among other things, no one ordered the spare parts – which would have cost $200 million – to keep the planes flying, SIGAR reported. 

Meanwhile the 20 aircraft sit unused. No wonder we’re broke.