Saturday, November 05, 2005

Halliburton Fraud Tops $200 Million

Add this to the chorus of issues that Dick "Dick" Cheney should have tied around his neck like a millstone prior to his tossing into the lake of fire. From Saturday's NY Times:

An auditing board sponsored by the United Nations recommended yesterday that the United States repay as much as $208 million to the Iraqi government for contracting work in 2003 and 2004 assigned to Kellogg, Brown & Root, the Halliburton subsidiary.

The work was paid for with Iraqi oil proceeds, but the board said it was either carried out at inflated prices or done poorly. The board did not, however, give examples of poor work.

Some of the work involved postwar fuel imports carried out by K.B.R. that previous audits had criticized as grossly overpriced.

More outrage below the fold...

...some of the K.P.M.G. audits that were carried out, relying on Iraqi ministry documents, turned up what appears to be clear evidence of mismanagement and corruption among Iraqi officials that was apparently unrelated to the K.B.R. work. In its report on the Iraqi Oil Ministry, the auditing firm used the euphemism "nonrefundable fees" for bribes in the awarding of oil contracts. "We found two cases," the report said, "where nonrefundable fees ($10,000 and $20,000) were charged to obtain tender documents (total contract value $150,302,897)."

Other entries suggest the existence of $600,000 in ghost payrolling in the Electricity Ministry and additional evidence of bribes.

I guess that explains what happened to some of the $9 billion dollars that went missing in Iraq.

Given the spotlight this week on Cheney's extensive involvement in the fear-mongering that led up to the Iraq War, as well as the fact that he still receives dividends and stock options from Halliburton, wouldn't it be prudent for Congress to put him under oath and ask him what's up?

Oh right, that would require the Republican leadership to hold the White House accountable for their failures. That clearly isn't going to happen soon. In the meantime, we can start engaging our progressive candidates as well as contact our existing Congresscritters and demand that they do their damn jobs.

Enough is Enough! Let that become our mantra in the coming days as we fight the never ending atrocities committed by the Bush War Council.

Crossposted from Booman Tribune

No comments: