Thursday, June 5, 2008

And some news from Iraq

Revealed: Secret Plan to Keep Iraq Under US Control
Thursday 05 June 2008
by: Patrick Cockburn, The Independent UK

Bush wants 50 military bases, control of Iraqi airspace and legal immunity for all American soldiers and contractors.

A secret deal being negotiated in Baghdad would perpetuate the American military occupation of Iraq indefinitely, regardless of the outcome of the US presidential election in November.

The terms of the impending deal, details of which have been leaked to The Independent, are likely to have an explosive political effect in Iraq. Iraqi officials fear that the accord, under which US troops would occupy permanent bases, conduct military operations, arrest Iraqis and enjoy immunity from Iraqi law, will destabilise Iraq's position in the Middle East and lay the basis for unending conflict in their country.

But the accord also threatens to provoke a political crisis in the US. President Bush wants to push it through by the end of next month so he can declare a military victory and claim his 2003 invasion has been vindicated. But by perpetuating the US presence in Iraq, the long-term settlement would undercut pledges by the Democratic presidential nominee, Barack Obama, to withdraw US troops if he is elected president in November.

The timing of the agreement would also boost the Republican candidate, John McCain, who has claimed the United States is on the verge of victory in Iraq - a victory that he says Mr Obama would throw away by a premature military withdrawal.

Entire Article: Click Here

DOD Contracts Out Contractor Oversight
Wednesday 04 June 2008
by: Maya Schenwar, t r u t h o u t Report

The Department of Defense (DOD) now employs contractors to keep contractors in check in Iraq, under a new framework for war industry management solidified last month.

In April, the Pentagon split its largest military contract in Iraq - formerly belonging to the Houston-based corporation KBR, Inc. - among companies Fluor and DynCorp, in addition to KBR.A fourth company, the British-American service provider Serco, is responsible for managing and overseeing the other three, according to its contract, signed last year and now in effect.

Based on the contract, Serco's duties include planning activities, managerial work, performance reviews, training and budget recommendations. According to an Army Sustainment Command news release last year, Serco is responsible for "analyzing performance contractors' costs," "working with the Army to measure contractor performance" and "recommending process improvements." The company also serves as a liaison between the other three contractors, and between the contractors and the government.

Entire Article: Click Here

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Cost of the War in Iraq
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