The Great Rubbery of Iraq Money
Now we know: the Iraq Reconstruction was one of the greatest
examples of incompetence and fraud in modern history, and the
billions from Iraqi oil, which we were told by Wolfowitz would pay
for the war, have barely been spent.
friends like these, it's no surprise the Iraqi people in
overwhelming numbers want us to
leave, regardless of the merits of the policy, or lack thereof.
The missing and stolen Iraq Reconstruction money and the unspent
and hoarded Iraq oil money is a scandal of the first order that
has cost American lives and turned a failed American policy into
a deadly and spreading catastrophe.
It is accountability time. Paul Bremer and George Tenet should
have their medals of freedom taken away as architects of
failure, General Shinseki and Congressman Murtha should receive
special commendations for being right and warning us
courageously, and the Democratic Congress should initiate all
out investigation of war profiteering by American Companies in
Lets stop rewarding the creators of disaster, lets start
recognizing the voices in the wilderness who tried to save us,
and lets start investigating and punishing those who committed
these unpatriotic crimes of fraud against the American taxpayers
and the people of Iraq.
Right out the gate the Democratic Congress should initiate and
take to conclusion an all out, full investigation of the Iraq
Reconstruction program with the goal of finding evidence for
criminal prosecution, major financial restitution with monies
going to troops or vets programs, and restoring integrity of
This was done during the Second World War by the Truman
Committee; many Democrats and Americans have called for this
today and the time has arrived to implement it.
It appears that more than $10 billion has been lost, stolen,
corrupted, missing or wasted in what may be greatest example of
crime and incompetence in the history of government spending.
It is sick and destructive that Iraqi children are punished
while they were hungry and food did not arrive; that suffering
Iraqis are punished when hospitals were not properly built; that
Iraqi students are punished by schools that were not built or
It is morally sickening that when training of Iraqis is so
deficient and responsible for American casualties, there are
facilities built by contractors that are flooded with urine and
feces falling through collapsing floors.
This corruption of government programs has taken money aimed at
helping the people of Iraq, supporting the war effort, helping
our troops, and winning the battle of ideas and turned it into a
giant cesspool of corrupted pork barrel spending.
This has contributed to the dire, disastrous and deteriorating
collapse in Iraq and has hurt our country throughout the Middle
This has been directly responsible for the massive Iraqi public
opinion against the mission and made life dramatically worse for
the people of Iraq.
This has given aid, comfort and support to our enemies in Iraq,
in the region, and to terrorists throughout the Middle East.
This has been an immoral, unpatriotic abuse of American
taxpayers, American troops and American national security
This has eroded public support for economic and reconstruction
programs generally, when such programs are essential along with
military, diplomatic and political initiatives executed with
integrity and professionalism.
This has been particularly egregious because apparently many
examples of waste, fraud, abuse, crime, corruption or
incompetence were carried out by companies with long ties to the
Republican Party who may have misused money that was a de facto
reward for partisan political activity.
If the results of this investigation keep the Republicans pin to
the mat, it is only because some of these companies have ties to
the Republican Party, were given these monies by a Republican
Administration, and got away with these crimes because of the
historic failure of oversight from the Republican Congress.
It is imperative to get to the bottom of the role of Haliburton,
especially because of long ties of that company to Republican
officeholders including the Vice President. They should be
treated fairly, as should every company and every official
called to testify, but the facts must come out and responsible
officials must be held accountable.
There should be full examination of why so many Republican
operatives were put in high level positions in Reconstruction,
who were clearly unqualified for their jobs, and what role if
any they played in corruption and negligence in managing
There should be aggressive accounting and documenting every
dollar that was authorized for reconstruction. Exactly what
officials were responsible, exactly how did they fail to
exercise their responsibilty and exactly what cost did these
Every Administration official with any level of responsiblity
that involved reconstrucion should testify formally before
Congress. Any official involved with companies receiving major
reconstruction money should testify before Congress.
When necessary they should be put under oath, though it is a
federal crime to lie in testimony even when witnesses are not
under oath. When necessary subpoenas should be issued to private
contractors and government agencies.
At the end of the day, there should be a full and complete
public report with accounting of money spent, with direct
responsiblity to named government officials who administered the
program, with detailed results announced naming companies that
have demonstrated either gross negligence or criminal
corruption, with full disclosure of any ties to partisan
Those who committed criminal offenses should be put in handcuffs
and sent to jail.
Companies that were involved in crime, fraud, abuse,
incompetence or gross negligence should be assessed dramatic
fines and fees for restitution.
Congress should enact a new law directing that restitution
moneys should be earmarked that protect and serve the health,
safety and future of American troops who have served in Iraq or
their families who have patriotically assumed an enormous burden
At the end of the day, there should not be one penny of profit
from corrupted programs, and there should be major restitutions
of the $10 billion that has been stolen, missing, corrupted or
abused by this catastrophic failure of Iraq reconstruction
spending, Republican oversight in Congress, and corporate
responsibility by offenders.
This investigation should be fair, honorable, impartial, and
rise above the standards that Republicans have shown when they
were in power in Congress, and rise above the standards of their
secret trials and abusive legalisms that they have repeatedly
This investigation should be nonpartisan, objective and
professional giving all rights of due process and fair treatment
I have been calling for a new POTUS initiative that would bring
to the fore the former American Presidents, especially
Presidents G.H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton, and would involve major
new Marshall Plan assistance to parties in the Middle East that
reach agreements and that implement cease fires.
It is imperative to restore crediblity with the American people
for reconstruction and reconstruction programs. It is imperative
to restore morality and honesty in government spending. It is
imperative to remove and punish crony corruption that has done
so much damage in Iraq. It is imperative that all be treated
fairly but that the guilty be identified, named, and brought to
justice and major financial restitution must be made.
Lets put any guilty in jail, take back any money that was
stolen, and monies recovered from corrupt profiteers should be
used for wounded troops, veterans health care and those who gave
so much, while others stole so much.