I can think of no better way to emphasize the current theft of our nations treasury at the expense of its youth than to use the words of Major General Smedley Butler in November 1935.
Never Ending War
We are not suppose to win, we are not suppose to lose …. We have always been at war with East Asia. This post is going to largely stand on its own from the research I have turned up.
WASHINGTON, Nov 2, 2009 (Reuters) – The U.S. government does not know exactly how many contractors it employs in Afghanistan, a U.S. commission said on Monday, raising basic questions about oversight of wartime operations.
Contractors in Afghanistan outnumber U.S. troops there and scandals involving misconduct by employees of private firms on the U.S. payroll in Afghanistan and Iraq have prompted calls by Congress for greater accountability.
[..]A traditional manual count by the U.S. military’s Central Command turned up nearly 74,000 U.S. Defense Department contractors in Afghanistan as of June 30 — more than twice the number shown in another survey by the Pentagon.
A more recent count from July 2010
[..]The Department of Defense has more contractors in Iraq and Afghanistan than it has uniformed military personnel, another newly updated report from the Congressional Research Service reminds us.
“The Department of Defense increasingly relies upon contractors to support operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, which has resulted in a DOD workforce that has 19% more contractor personnel (207,600) than uniformed personnel (175,000),” said the CRS report
At 57% of total Defense Department workforce, the number of contractors represents “the highest recorded percentage of contractors used by DOD in any conflict in the history of the United States,” the study concludes.
Its the same Old Story (no date)
Currently in Afghanistan, there are 121,000 U.S. contractors and 68,000 U.S. troops. As a result of the coming surge, another 30,000 troops and 56,000 contractors are expected. But U.S. lawmakers are afraid that the mistakes that plagued military contracting in Iraq will be repeated in Afghanistan. Will the shadow armies be required to protect the Afghan civilian population? What are the chances that military contractors could cause major damage to America’s mission in Afghanistan? Will the Obama administration be able to prevent the waste, fraud and abuse seen in Iraq?
[..]Recently the CIA announced that it had stopped using Blackwater (now known as Xe Services) to conduct raids and other special operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, but some press reports say Xe Services are still at the center of a secret program in Karachi, Pakistan, where they plan assassinations of suspected Taliban and Al Qaeda members, among other operations.
Have you noticed that Republicans dont mind adding debt to the national budget just as long as it goes to support killing?
Even as U.S. troops surge to new highs in Afghanistan they are outnumbered by military contractors working alongside them, according to a Defense Department census due to be distributed to Congress — illustrating how hard it is for the U.S. to wean itself from the large numbers of war-zone contractors that proved controversial in Iraq.
The number of military contractors in Afghanistan rose to almost 74,000 by June 30, far outnumbering the roughly 58,000 U.S. soldiers on the ground at that point. As the military force in Afghanistan grows further, to a planned 68,000 by the end of the year, the Defense Department expects the ranks of contractors to increase more.
Many of the basic duties that used to be performed by the military are now outsourced. Isn’t that just like our government? To bad they cant outsource the dieing part of war also. But then you have to have some death to whip the war mongers into a frenzy.
[..]Military contractors’ personnel for a time outnumbered U.S. troops in Iraq. The large contractor force was accompanied by issues ranging from questionable costs billed to the government to shooting of civilians by armed security guards. A September 2007 shooting incident involving Blackwater Worldwide guards working for the U.S. State Department, in which 17 Iraqis were killed, forced the U.S. to aggressively rework oversight of security firms.
[..]A recent contract is worth up to $15 billion to two firms, DynCorp International Inc. and Fluor Corp., to build and support U.S. military bases throughout Afghanistan.
Meanwhile, government auditors have repeatedly uncovered military mismanagement of contractors. The Wartime Contracting Commission reported finding during an April trip that the military had accepted a new headquarters building in Kabul hobbled by shoddy construction. Officials in Iraq and Afghanistan were unable to give the commission complete lists of work being contracted out at the bases they visited.
How much is this costing the US? Cost of War
Of course with all that personnel running around in foreign lands we gotta have some death associated with it, right?
They show that U.S. contractor deaths are soaring, from 189 last June 30th since the war began in 2001, to 521 this June 30th – an increase of 175% in just one year. These numbers include armed private security contractors, as well as those working on development programs, who are American, Afghan and third-country nationals working under a U.S. contract.
[..]However, since there could be as many as 120,000 to 125,000 contractors in Afghanistan, 521 deaths comprise only a small percentage of total contractors in Afghanistan, roughly 0.4%.
[..]The Department of Defense is the only agency that regularly tracks and publishes its count each FY quarter. By the end of March 2010, it had 112,092 contractors in Afghanistan.
Going by the DOD’s contractor statistics alone, there was an increase from 73,968 last June to 112,092 this March – a 52% increase, accompanying the rise in U.S. and coalition troops in the past year.
Thus, while the number of DOD contractors rose about 52% in the last year, the number of contractor deaths during that time rose 175%.
Meanwhile, NATO military casualties increased by 57% from last year, and U.S. military casualties rose by 60% from last year, according to http://icasualties.org/ statistics.
“In reality it’s a contractor surge,” Allison Stanger, author of “One Nation Under Contract”, said in a phone interview with ABC News, about the dramatic rise of contractors in Afghanistan.
If you are a weapons manufacturer our government needs you. If you build war machinery there are Congress Critters who want to talk to you. If you negotiate in death but count your profits in U$D we can outsource to you. As I said from the beginning we are not suppose to win, we are not suppose to lose. So why are we still there? Because the stealing needs to continue. We have a wrecked economy within our borders due to the theft and destruction going on inside Iraq and Afghanistan borders. And where there is chaos there is corruption
James Burch, the Defense Department’s deputy inspector general for investigations, says his agency is investigating 223 cases — 18 percent more than a year ago.
Investigators have charged an Army officer with pocketing cash meant to pay Iraqi civilian militiamen, contractors offering an Army officer $1 million for the inside track on a road project in Afghanistan, and three contractors for an alleged conspiracy to steal hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of fuel from a U.S. base in Baghdad.
Army Maj. John Cockerham was sentenced in December to 17½ years in prison for accepting $9 million in bribes for contracts to sell water and other supplies to the U.S. military.
[..]In Iraq, investigators have opened 67 fraud cases this year, compared with 69 for all of 2009, according to the Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction (SIGIR). In Afghanistan, it’s 42 cases this year vs. four last year.