<\body> Stories in America: The Army Fires Halliburton

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

The Army Fires Halliburton

$45 for soda, $100 for laundry, $25 per plate of food even when there's no food on the plate, and $80,000 for torched Mercedes trucks. This is criminal. And conservatives cry about "handouts" to the poor.

Will the party in power force Halliburton to reimburse taxpayers? Oh right, the former CEO of the Halliburton is the Vice-President.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers announced plans to terminate Halliburton's largest and most scandalous contract in Iraq and Afghanistan later this year, the Washington Post reported today. Under the contract, known as LogCap, Halliburton's KBR subsidiary performs a myriad of logistics services on U.S. military bases worldwide, including the construction of military housing, delivery of mail to the troops, transportation of supplies, and the preparation of meals at dining halls.

Pentagon auditors found over $1 billion in questionable costs under the contract. Current and former employees described instances where Halliburton overcharged U.S. taxpayers by paying $45 per case of soda, $100 for a standard cleaning of laundry, and $80,000 for brand new Mercedes trucks that were torched because of minor equipment problems. At one point, Halliburton billed the government for 36 percent more meals than was actually served to the troops while an internal company report said it had overcharged by 19 percent. Another military audit, first revealed by HalliburtonWatch, accused Halliburton of imposing "increased costs to the government” (and therefore higher profits for the company) by purchasing millions of dollars in trucks that were sitting idle and unused in parking lots under Iraq's desert sun. In addition, a report by Halliburton employees, first revealed by HalliburtonWatch, revealed how the company was delivering contaminated and unhealthy water to unsuspecting troops throughout Iraq on a regular basis.

Even though Iraq's oil industry was still in shambles, early last year Halliburton bailed out of its scandal-plagued oil reconstruction contract with the Army. "It's just not an environment, either legally or risk-wise" to do business, Andy Lane, Halliburton's Chief Operating Officer & Executive Vice President, told investors last year. It's unclear whether Halliburton cut-and-run from the oil work or was pushed out by the U.S. State Department, which had produced a scathing report that harshly criticized the company's work.


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