The OIG reports on our US missions overseas often make quite interesting reading. I look at these reports kind of like imperfect report cards for our consulates and embassies overseas; but they're the only ones the public get to read on mission performance. There are a couple of things that I think might improve these reports – one is to revert to the old practice of including the names of the members of the inspection team in the publicly available reports. Well, maybe they are included in the original reports, but are stripped from the publicly posted version. I can't think of any good reason why the names of the members of the inspection teams should be redacted from the publicly available copies, can you?
The last thing you want to happen is for the Inspector General's Office to be perceived as ineffective or just protecting the DOS. The State Department should also hurry up and fill the slot for its Inspector General. The former Inspector General, "Cookie" Krongard appointed in 2005 resigned from office on January 2008 and has yet to be replaced. Retired FSO and former Ambassador Harold W. Geisel has been the Deputy IG since June 2008.
Technically, a mission can still achieve its foreign policy objectives even if its people are overworked, have low morale and are counting the days when they leave post and survive their bosses. They are professionals after all; they have to do their jobs. The question is -- when policy objectives are achieved, how much does it matter or who really cares if the parts did not work as well as they could have?