Wednesday, February 07, 2007
Iraq: The Sinkhole for Our Money
Paul Bremer and the Missing Billions * Secret Contracts for Haliburton
- "We spent a lot of money in Iraq with very little to show for it," said Rep. Henry A. Waxman (D-Calif.), chairman of the Oversight and Government Reform Committee. "I think it's important to understand, going back to the CPA period, how we got into the position we are in."
Washington Post January 7, 2007
The funds were provided to the Iraqis in cash, often in shrink-wrapped packages of $100 bills. The committee's chairman, Rep. Henry A. Waxman (D-Calif.), said the U.S. government flew nearly $12 billion in cash into Baghdad on military cargo planes from May 2003 to June 2004.
"Who in their right mind would send 363 tons of cash into a war zone? But that's exactly what our government did," Waxman said. Because of the way the CPA kept track of the payments, Waxman said, "we have no way of knowing whether the cash shipped into the Green Zone ended up in enemy hands."
Washington Post January 6, 2007
The chief purpose of today's hearing is to focus on the Coalition Provisional Authority's spending of Iraqi oil revenue in 2003 and 2004. Stuart W. Bowen Jr., the special inspector general for Iraq reconstruction, issued an audit stating that the CPA engaged in "less than adequate" managerial and financial control of approximately $8.8 billion given to Iraqi government ministries.
Washington Post (Larry Margasak, Association Press)
WASHINGTON -- After numerous denials, the Pentagon has confirmed that a North Carolina company provided armed security guards in Iraq under a subcontract that was buried so deeply the government couldn't find it.
The secretary of the Army on Tuesday wrote two Democratic lawmakers that the Blackwater USA contract was part of a huge military support operation by run by Halliburton subsidiary KBR.
Vice President Dick Cheney ran Halliburton before he became vice president.
Several times last year, Pentagon officials told inquiring lawmakers they could find no evidence of the Blackwater contract. Blackwater, of Moyock, N.C., did not respond to several requests for comment.
The discovery shows the dense world of Iraq contracting, where the main contractor hires subcontractors who then hire additional subcontractors. Each company tacks on a charge for overhead, a cost that works its way up to U.S. taxpayers.