So this is how the US government does business!
Cash from the New York Federal Reserve is loaded on to C-130s and shipped to Bagdad — to the tune of $12 billion since the start of the US occupation of Iraq in March 2003.
The money originally came from Iraqi oil sales under Saddam and was held in trust under the rules of the UN oil sales program. Now it is handed out to Iraqi and US government contractors in the form of cash. Or “candy,” as Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) puts it.
In the end, $8.8 billion can no longer be accounted for. And the Pentagon acknowledges Halliburton “requested that information in the audits be withheld” from the Congressional subpoena, “including allegations that the firm had spent too much money in purchasing fuel.”
“By law, contractors can request that the government withhold any proprietary information from release.”
Interesting law, when corporations can decide information about their public contracts is proprietary.
But anyway, it’s all just “pocket change,” says an e-mail circulating at the Fed.
(See article: “Worries Raised on Handling of Funds in Iraq,” Los Angeles Times, June 22, 2005.)
And who can argue with that?
* * *
Recall Donald Rumsfeld chose the date of September 10, 2001 to announce that a Pentagon audit, ordered by Undersecretary Dov Zakheim and conducted by a Halliburton subsidiary, had discovered that the Defense Department can no longer account for $2.3 trillion in past transactions. (Note: You are not hallucinating: two… Continue reading
What Should We Really Be Afraid Of?
By W. David Jenkins III
Project for the Old American Century
June 1, 2005
Violence can only be concealed by a lie, and the lie can only be maintained by violence.- Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn
Although tyranny…may successfully rule over foreign peoples,
it can stay in power only if it destroys first of all the national institutions of its own people. ~Hannah Areddt
That’s right, I said it. Forget about 9/11. Just put all those horrible images away. I mean no disrespect but I think it’s time to put things in perspective.
9/11 has become an excuse for those who would exploit it and the world is a sadder and more dangerous place because of those who have used the tragedy for their own gains. This isn’t exactly a news flash but it isreality. An unfortunate reality that you and I had no part in making. That responsibility lays with the people who are still scared and those who would continue to exploit their fear. And that fear is the very foundation, the very source of strength of the present administration. Fear is now the guiding principle of almost every aspect of almost every person in America today. We have all become afraid just for different reasons.
Lately I’ve been doing a bit of research on fear and the odds we all face when it comes to our eventual deaths. Let’s face it; we’re all going to go sometime.
With acknowledgements to The National Safety Council (NSC), the FBI, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and some great work by writer, John Schettler (Scare Tactics), I’ve come to the conclusion that many Americans are afraid of the wrong things.…Continue reading
By Sibel Edmonds
May 14, 2005
“Those of you who still think this case, my case, is about covering up some administrative blunder or bureaucratic mismanagement, please think again… What were [my] core allegations, and who did they involve… They would not go to this length to protect some nobody criminal or terrorist.” – Sibel Edmonds
The Appeal Court’s decision on Sibel Edmonds’ Case is out: ‘Case Dismissed;’ no opinion cited; no reason provided. The Court’s decision, issued on Friday, May 6, has generated a string of obituaries; “another major blow, maybe the last one, to Sibel Edmonds, a woman who has faced an unprecedented level of government secrecy, gag orders, and classification.” Well, dear friends and supporters, Sibel Edmonds may be gagged, but she’s not dead.
On October 18, 2002; three months after I filed my suit against the Department of Justice for unlawful termination of my employment caused by my reporting criminal activities committed by government officials and employees, John Ashcroft, the then Attorney General, invoked a rarely invoked privilege, the State Secrets Privilege. According to Ashcroft,everything involving my case and my allegations were considered state secrets, and whether or not I was right in my allegations, the United States District Court had to dismiss my entire case without any questions,hearings or oral argument; period. According to Ashcroft, the court had to grant his order and dismiss the entire case with no hearings solely based on the fact that he, Ashcroft, said so. After all, our government knew best.…Continue reading
March 21, 2005
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court on Monday rejected terrorism suspect Zacarias Moussaoui’s attempt to directly question three al-Qaeda prisoners and cleared the way for a trial of the only U.S. defendant charged in connection with the Sept. 11 attacks.
The ruling allows the government to proceed with plans to seek the death penalty if Moussaoui is convicted of participating in an al-Qaeda conspiracy that included the 2001 airplane hijackings.
The Justice Department said it would file a motion as early as Tuesday, suggesting a trial date in Alexandria, Va.
The government had told the nation’s highest court that national security would be compromised if Moussaoui, an acknowledged al-Qaeda loyalist, was given access to al-Qaeda captives.
Moussaoui’s lawyers had asserted that defendants have a constitutional right to witness statements that might exonerate them, and argued that if this right is taken away, the government should not be allowed to seek Moussaoui’s execution.
Prosecutors, defense lawyers and U.S. District Judge Leonie Brinkema in Alexandria will have months of pretrial work ahead of them before Moussaoui could go on trial.
By turning down Moussaoui’s attempt to directly confront witnesses who — the defense believes — could exonerate him of any Sept. 11 involvement, the court will require the crafting of unclassified summaries from classified prisoner interrogation statements.
The 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals had directed the parties and the judge to agree on the summaries, and the latest decision means the appellate court decision will stand.
However, the 4th Circuit did allow the defense to propose language for the summaries, although the government could object to the proposals.…Continue reading
IG Report Concluded That Whistleblowing Activities Contributed To Her Termination
For Immediate Release: September 22, 2004
For further information contact:
Mark S. Zaid, Esq.
Sibel Edmonds, a former FBI contract linguist who was terminated in 2002 after becoming a Whistleblower regarding the 9/11 tragedy, filed a lawsuit today in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia under the Freedom of Information and Privacy Acts. The Complaint seeks to compel the release of a secret investigative report, and related documents, compiled by the Department of Justice’s Office of Inspector General. The DOJ OIG investigated Edmonds’ allegations for more than two years and has failed to abide by repeated promises – including provided to Senators Charles Grassley (R-IA) and Patrick Leahy (D-VT) in June 2002 – to timely complete its investigation and release its findings.
On July 21, 2004, FBI Director Robert S. Mueller, III, notified the Senate Judiciary Committee that the DOJ OIG had completed its investigation and concluded that Edmonds’ allegations “were at least a contributing factor” in her firing. Additionally, DOJ Inspector General Glenn Fine also concluded that the FBI failed to “adequately pursue” Edmonds’ allegations of espionage against a co-worker. Although the DOJ promised the Committee that a declassified summary would be released, and notwithstanding the fact that Edmonds’ FOIA request was granted expedited processing by the government in July 2004, to date not one page has been released.
“The Justice Department has continually sought to cover-up the FBI’s misconduct with… Continue reading
According to the NY Times of July 29, an internal DoJ report has found Sibel Edmonds was at least “in part” fired because of her whistleblower activities in accusing the FBI of incompetence and a co-worker of suppressing documents relating to Sept. 11.
Originally published at the New York Times, by Eric Lichtblau on 7/29/04
Whistle-Blowing Said to Be Factor in an F.B.I. Firing
By ERIC LICHTBLAU
WASHINGTON, July 28 – A classified Justice Department investigation has concluded that a former F.B.I. translator at the center of a growing controversy was dismissed in part because she accused the bureau of ineptitude, and it found that the F.B.I. did not aggressively investigate her claims of espionage against a co-worker.
The Justice Department’s inspector general concluded that the allegations by the translator, Sibel Edmonds, “were at least a contributing factor in why the F.B.I. terminated her services,” and the F.B.I. is considering disciplinary action against some employees as a result, Robert S. Mueller III, director of the bureau, said in a letter last week to lawmakers. A copy of the letter was obtained by The New York Times.
Ms. Edmonds worked as a contract linguist for the F.B.I. for about six months, translating material in Turkish, Persian and Azerbaijani. She was dismissed in 2002 after she complained repeatedly that bureau linguists had produced slipshod and incomplete translations of important terrorism intelligence before and after the Sept. 11 attacks. She also accused a fellow Turkish linguist in the bureau’s Washington… Continue reading