Cheney’s Halliburton Made $39.5 Billion on Iraq War

Z Communications – by Angelo Young

The accounting of the financial cost of the nearly decade-long Iraq War will go on for years, but a recent analysis has shed light on the companies that made money off the war by providing support services as the privatization of what were former U.S. military operations rose to unprecedented levels.

Private or publicly listed firms received at least $138 billion of U.S. taxpayer money for government contracts for services that included providing private security, building infrastructure and feeding the troops.  

Ten contractors received 52 percent of the funds, according to an analysis by the Financial Times that was published Tuesday.

The No. 1 recipient?

Houston-based energy-focused engineering and construction firm KBR, Inc. (NYSE:KBR), which was spun off from its parent, oilfield services provider Halliburton Co. (NYSE:HAL), in 2007.

The company was given $39.5 billion in Iraq-related contracts over the past decade, with many of the deals given without any bidding from competing firms, such as a $568-million contract renewal in 2010 to provide housing, meals, water and bathroom services to soldiers, a deal that led to a Justice Department lawsuit over alleged kickbacks, as reported by Bloomberg.

Who were Nos. 2 and 3?

Agility Logistics (KSE:AGLTY) of Kuwait and the state-owned Kuwait Petroleum Corp. Together, these firms garnered $13.5 billion of U.S. contracts.

As private enterprise entered the war zone at unprecedented levels, the amount of corruption ballooned, even if most contractors performed their duties as expected.

According to the bipartisan Commission on Wartime Contracting in Iraq and Afghanistan, the level of corruption by defense contractors may be as high as $60 billion. Disciplined soldiers that would traditionally do many of the tasks are commissioned by private and publicly listed companies.

Even without the graft, the costs of paying for these services are higher than paying governement employees or soldiers to do them because of the profit motive involved. No-bid contracting – when companies get to name their price with no competing bid – didn’t lower legitimate expenses. (Despite promises by President Barack Obama to reel in this habit, the trend toward granting favored companies federal contracts without considering competing bids continued to grow, by 9 percent last year, according to the Washington Post.)

Even though the military has largely pulled out of Iraq, private contractors remain on the ground and continue to reap U.S. government contracts. For example, the U.S. State Department estimates that taxpayers will dole out $3 billion to private guards for the government’s sprawling embassy in Baghdad.

The costs of paying private and publicly listed war profiteers seem miniscule in light of the total bill for the war.

Last week, the Costs of War Project by the Watson Institute for International Studies at Brown University said the war in Iraq cost $1.7 trillion dollars, not including the $490 billion in immediate benefits owed to veterans of the war and the lifetime benefits that will be owed to them or their next of kin.

One thought on “Cheney’s Halliburton Made $39.5 Billion on Iraq War

  1. Tricky Dick loves Hemp Rope – Nigeria almost got him

    One of the Globalist heavy weights, Dick Cheney, might need his new heart pump adjusted this week, as he reads the charges the Nigerian Government is about to lay down on him. It seems that after getting away with cheating the American people, karma rose its ugly head. How did he cheat the American people you ask?

    On Sept 14, 2003 Dick Cheney was on the Meet The Press show and said this, “Since I left Halliburton to become George Bush’ Vice President, I’ve severed all my ties with the company (Halliburton), gotten rid of all my financial interest. I have no financial interest in Halliburton of any kind and haven’t had, now, for over three years”. Oh really Dick? What about the deferred salary of over $150,000 per year while maintaining 433,333 shares of stock options you still were enjoying?

    Without any previous business experience, Dick Chaney left the Department Of Defense and became the CEO of the Halliburton Co. He was Chairman from 1996 to 1998, again from February to August 2000. During this time, Halliburton moved up from 73rd to 18th on the Pentagon’s list of top contractors.

    Wow! Wonder how that happened! I’ll bet tricky Dick’s mouth was watering as he was moving Halliburton up the list. I mean, after all, he had powerful connections; he was being groomed for the Vice Presidency, why not!

    It seems that the engineering contractor KBR, up until 2007 a subsidiary of Halliburton, was among other companies in 2004 that paid bribes to Nigerian officials to secure a $6 billion dollar contract for a natural gas plant in Nigeria. KBR pleaded guilty to the charges in a US court in 2009, and agreed to pay a $382 million dollar fine.

    You see, Dick Cheney dodged any responsibility and skated from prosecution. Why, because at the time he was Vice President of the United States. You see when you’re Vice President; the law doesn’t apply to you.

    Now, the rooster has come home to roost, with the alleged bribery estimated at $180 million. Nigerian prosecutors named Cheney and three other executives, in a 16 count indictment. And they want blood, Cheney’s blood and they want prison time (short for we want money).

    What does tricky Dick do now? Why, have his buddies over at Halliburton make a $597 million dollar payoff of course. Halliburton is considering the payoff to keep the charges out of court. Sure makes things easy does’t it? I mean, $597 million is chump change when your high on the Pentagon’s contractor list and are guaranteed future contracts worth billions. It’s just the price of doing business.

    Note: It is unclear whether this amount covers all the other European companies involved. These were: Technip SA, Eni spA and Saipem Construction Co.

    And wouldn’t you know it, Nigerian law doesn’t recognize plea bargaining, making this an out of court settlement. Bribing the Nigerian Government so Cheney’s bribery case doesn’t see the light of day! Is this the reason why the rich need their tax extensions?

    People, you just can’t make this damn stuff up!

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