So what defense contract in Iraq didn't involve a kickback? What contract was awarded through competitive bidding? As Pentagon investigators conduct an unprecedented review into corruption in the department's Iraq contracting, it's a rare bid that wasn't crooked.There's more.
Yesterday, Congress learned that $6 billion worth of contracts are under criminal review. That's right -- criminal:
Military officials said Thursday that contracts worth $6 billion to provide essential supplies to American troops in Kuwait, Iraq and Afghanistan — including food, water and shelter — were under review by criminal investigators, double the amount the Pentagon had previously disclosed.
In addition, $88 billion in contracts and programs, including those for body armor for American soldiers and matériel for Iraqi and Afghan security forces, are being audited for financial irregularities, the officials said.
Taken together, the figures, provided by the Pentagon in a hearing before the House Armed Services Committee, represent the fullest public accounting of the magnitude of a widening government investigation into bid-rigging, bribery and kickbacks by members of the military and civilians linked to the Pentagon’s purchasing system.
House Armed Services Committee Chairman Ike Skelton (D-MO) called DOD's procurement process "a culture of corruption," an assessment that appears to represent the bipartisan consensus. Yet the Pentagon's deputy inspector general said the contracting corruption was attributable to "isolated incidents." Yes, $6 billion worth of isolated incidents.
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