It had some of the atmospheric sense of the hearings that Rep. Conyers held
on the Downing Street Memo. The only difference this time is that it was not being
held in a basement room of the Capital. It was being held in an actual chamber
of Congress. The hearing was however, only attended by members of Congress who
sit on the left side of the aisle.
On Monday, Democratic Congressmen conducted a hearing into the actual
contracts by Halliburton for the rebuilding of Iraq. This hearing did not get
any press, except for being showed on C-Span. The hearing asked questions
involving the actual work that Halliburton and itÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s Subsidiary, KBR, has done in
Iraq. This was, as the conservatives would call it, another ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œmockÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â trial.
Testimony was given by some experts including, Allan Waller who is C.E.O. of
Lloyd Owen International and Gary Butters who is the chairman of the same company.
Lloyd Owen International is a company that was contracted by the Iraqi
Government to deliver fuel to the people of Iraq. They are a security and
operations firm with a U.S. office based out of Florida. During the testimony of
the two top officials of this company, they gave compelling statements of how
Halliburton has not worked on the actual restoration of the oil infrastructure
as pursuant to their contract with the United States. Mr. Butters said that to
date they have only seen one K.B.R. official at one of the sites used to restore
the oil infrastructure to Iraq. Lloyd Owen employees visit all these sites on a daily basis. K.B.R. was suppose to be repairing the
infrastructure and get it back in operation, however Lloyd Owen has had to
purchase their own equipment in order to get fuel to the Iraqi people.
Even more troubling was listening to the daily problems Lloyd Owen faces when
trying to deliver fuel to the people of Iraq. They have been stopped at border
crossings and delayed because, as military officials put it, ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œthey are not a
U.S. contractorÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â. The fact is they are an Iraqi contractor, which means they
should have top priority to go across. Since we are there as liberators and now
to assist with the formation of Iraq's own democratic government, then how can
the U.S. military try to impede their work?
A statement given later by Senator Lautenberg shed what could be potential
light on the reasons that the government is allowing this. When talking about
Dick CheneyÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s connection with Halliburton, the Senator brought up an interesting
fact. He said that the vice-President has ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œa salary contract the goes until 2007
and stock options until 2009ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â with his former employer (Halliburton). This poses
a conflict of interest. We are continuing to dump tax payer money into a company
that will end up giving the vice-President a cut of it. At the start of the war
Halliburton stock was going for approximately $20 a share. Today it is up to
almost $50 a share. This adds to a nice nest egg the vice-President is sitting
on with his stock options.
During the same statement by Senator Lautenberg, he also said what a crime it
was that families of soldiers have to send money over to their loved ones
serving in our military in order to purchase protective equipment that the
United States should be supplying. We already heard the horrid stories of how
our troops are dying needlessly because they are not properly protected. They
are driving around in a war zone in unarmored vehicles, and the ones that are
armored are so only because soldiers have done a make shift job on it using
materials they can find. In a report by the
New York Times this past Saturday, they detailed how the armament of
vehicles, as promised by Donald Rumsfeld, has been met with numerous delays and
glitches. This is something that should not be allowed to happen!
The fact is coming out that we are in this war for strictly monetary reasons.
They are not monetary reasons that will help the United States economy as a
whole, but only a small percentile of it ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬Å“ namely people like the
vice-President. We hear ever day about more and more of our young soldiers
getting killed in Iraq and how the area is in a state of further
destabilization. Even worse yet, our
administration refuses to listen to the outcry of the public far an exit
strategy which could start bringing our troops home.
The testimonies in this hearing make it obvious that the administration has a
purely financial motivation for staying in Iraq and it is sickening.
The worst part is that our Republican run Congress will not even conduct
official hearings on this scandal. In a government of checks and balances, one branch
has their hands up the asses of another branch and is forcing them to act in a
way they see best fit for the elite few. Our government has been stolen. It has
been taken by some money hungry monsters that we call our leaders. Formal
hearings must be allowed on this scandal as it is costing us dearly. It is
costing us money and the lives of our brave fighting men and women of the armed
services. It is also costing the Iraqi people money and lives.
Ironically this hearing was on the same day that we heard the BTK Killer
confessed to ten murders. He detailed the hideous crimes in a court. In my
opinion I would have to give more credit to the BTK Killer than to our
vice-President. At least he was able to murder people by his own hand for some
sick perverted mindset. Our vice-President is doing so by the means of war and
his sick mindset involves only one thing ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬Å“ MONEY!!
I urge everyone who reads this, as we approach our Independence Day weekend to
take time out and try to fight for our independence once again. This time it is
not from the British, it is an enemy much closer. We need to fight to remove
these money-hungry killers from office. I implore every one of you to write your
Representatives and Senator and ask for formal hearings to be started on
HalliburtonÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s scandal involving the Iraq war. We owe it not only to ourselves,
but also our soldiers who are fighting and who have died in Iraq!