The baby-oil theory ...

johnhall johnhall at
Fri Apr 18 20:48:12 PDT 2003

> From: fork-bounces at [mailto:fork-bounces at] On Behalf
> bitbitch at

> The Problem with his rather vague answer of the awards going to
> 'American corporations' is that he doesn't bother to explain which
> corporations he means. 

My initial reaction to this is: I could care less.  That does assume
that the contracts are not going to clearly criminal enterprises or that
the companies are getting paid $100 for $50 worth of work because they
paid off the people issuing the contract.

Before you get to riled up, you might compare that with the integrity
and openness in, say, the current UN Oil for Food program:

> First, that there were only 7-21 (depending on your source)
> companies allowed to bid.

If bidding is involved, 7 is more than enough.  It is no-bid contracts
that are potentially far more worrisome.

> Second, the bids were pretty much restricted to US companies due to
> the Iran and Libya Sanctions Act:
> A 1996 U.S. law, the Iran and Libya Sanctions Act, or ILSA, threatens
> sanctions on foreign companies that make $40 million or more in new
> investments in Iran. These companies could be barred from U.S.-awarded
> contracts in Iraq.
> The law, which Bush renewed in 2001 for five years, has outraged
> members of the European Union. They reject it as an illegal attempt to
> impose U.S. foreign-policy goals on others.
> Major corporations that have energy projects under way in Iran include
> the French company TotalFinaElf, Japan's state-owned oil company and
> Britain's Shell group.

Companies from coalition countries should definitely not be excluded.
That obviously means Britain, but it also means Japan where the
government was clearly supportive.

As for TotalFinaElf -- excluding them is an 'of course' thing.  Friends
of Saddam like Chirac and ToalFinaElf need not apply.

>  Third, this was done quietly:
>  USAID quietly circulated a request for proposals to a select group of
>  firms at the end of January, in order to quickly line up contractors
>  without making a public announcement that would disrupt diplomatic
>  negotiations, spokeswoman Ellen Yount said.

I thought you were of the opinion that we should be more diplomatic.  Do
you think asking for bids publicly would have benefited the diplomatic

==> What percentage of all work in the future is involved here?  Are
these 10 year deals of 2 year deals?  Sweetheart or 'reasonable rate'
for the work to be performed?

>  While not all corporations are as nefarious, the big and heavy
>  hitters really do stand out.  Halliburton, Bechel and Stevedoring
>  Services all have some pretty deep ties with the administration.  And
>  they donate effectively.  This is less a case about true 'American
>  Corporations' winning the contracts fairly, and more about who you
>  know, how much you paid, and what quirks control the system.

In your list of 6, only 2 were really significant (#1 and #5).  Both of
them are relatively large corporations.

If you want to question something, I'd question #1 (which is the largest
and is listed as a no-bid contract).  It is certainly reasonable to
question it.

> War Analysis: The destruction of Iraq is good for business
> Posted on Tuesday, April 15 @ 13:00:25 GMT
> Topic: New Iraq
> By Kurt Nimmo

1. Yes, corporations would be good for Iraq.
2. Cluster bombs are not illegal, nor is detention of unlawful
3. The disorder in Iraq is better than the order under Saddam.
4. If the US and Britain wanted to "destroy a large number of
dark-skinned people and various distinct cultures in the Middle East"
they could have done so without leaving home.  If they had tried to kill
dark skinned people in Iraq, the dead wouldn't be 1,500 it would be
5. The 'devastation of Iraq'?  It was amazing how hard we tried not to
break things we'd have to pay to rebuild later.
6. Why would anyone import Filipino labor into Iraq?
7. Regime change in Syria, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Saudi Arabia and
Cuba would all be good things.  Does he really want to claim otherwise?

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