New Pentagon Audit Questions Army Contracting Procedure For Body Armor

U.S. Army soldiers from K Troop, Third Squadron, Third Armored Cavalry Regiment, patrol in Mosul, Iraq Tuesday, March 25, 2008. The northern city is considered by the U.S. military as the last urban stronghold for al-Qaida in Iraq. (AP Photo/Maya Alleruzzo)
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Washington (AP) A defense department audit concludes the army can't be sure all of its body armor meets safety standards.

The department's inspector general reviewed more than $5 billion worth of army and marine corps body armor contracts from 2004 to 2006.

The report finds that 13 of 28 army contracts and orders did not include details on preliminary testing of the protective vests. And in 11 cases there's not enough paperwork to show whether the award WAS based on “informed decisions.”

The report was requested by New York Democratic Congresswoman Louise Slaughter. She calls it “shameful” and says the officials responsible for the error ought to be fired.

The army says the body armor is safe and says the problem boils down to a disagreement over when and what type of testing is required.