Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Iraq For Sale

Robert Greenwald has done it again. You'll be forgiven for not knowing the name of this superb and gifted documentarian; You'll never see any of his work on CBS, NBC, ABC or any other mainstream media outlet, for that matter. That's because Greenwald works independent of all corporate influence. His films, "Out Foxed: Rupert Murdoch's War on Journalism", "Uncovered: The War on Iraq" and "Walmart: The High Cost of Low Cost" have the unfortunate tendency of telling obvious and yet uncomfortable truths that the American plutocracy would rather you and I not know. He's that kind of filmmaker.

His latest film, "Iraq For Sale", is probably his best one yet. I really don't have to explain the story behind it, do I? The title says it all. The war in Iraq was a gold mine for the Bush administration and their corporate connections. It explains, in painstaking detail, how these companies, Dick Cheney's Halliburton in particular, were able to make a killing - literally - by overcharging the American taxpayers and stealing billions of dollars in the process. In order to milk as much profit as they possibly could from this massive cash cow, they supplied American soldiers with bad food, tainted water and lethally inferior equipment. Interviews granted to Greenwald and his crew by past and present Halliburton employees, not to mention servicemen who fought in Iraq, tell a story so disturbing and outrageous, if every American could hear it today, Bush and Cheney would be impeached tomorrow.

Halliburton, which is a subsidiary of the Texas-based firm, Kellogg, Brown and Root (KBR), was given no-bid contacts by the Bush Mob to provide services to the military which in previous conflicts were provided by the military, itself. In short, this is the first war in the history of the world that has been completely privatized!

Do you recall what Mussolini said about fascism being a combination of corporate and state power? Do you, per chance, see a little bit of a trend here? Ah! I thought as much.

Let's explore just a handful of Mr. Greenwald's juicier revelations, shall we?

1. Forty cents out of every dollar controlled by congress now goes to private contractors. There are over one-hundred thousand of them today in the Iraq/Kuwait area alone.

2. Much of the "soldiering" being done in Iraq at the moment has been contracted out to a private security firm called Blackwater which was responsible for much of the abuse that occurred at Abu Ghraib. The very existence of this company, a private army for profit, flies in the face of the Geneva Conventions, not to mention the US Constitution.

3. Many of the civilian contractors, doing jobs that were once done by the army, are getting paid six-figure salaries.

4. One of the companies, Titan, which was paid over two billion dollars to provide linguists, sent to Iraq people who were barely proficient in the Arabic language.

5. The uniform code of military justice does not apply to civilian contractors in Iraq.

6. Most of the people doing the menial work for KBR are cheap labor from other middle eastern countries. These jobs could and should have gone to the Iraqi people. This might very well have prevented the dissent that is today making itself known by means of an out-of-control insurgency.

7. Many of the American civilians who were lured to Iraq by the promise of high salaries, have been put into dangerous, combative situations. Scores of them have lost their lives as a result.

8. The water provided by Halliburton for American servicemen and women to drink and bathe in is described by former employee Ben Carter as, "extremely contaminated". He broke down and wept on camera while he was relating this information. "Of the sixty-seven water treatment plants that Halliburton run, sixty-three of them weren't providing safe water", he said.

9. Halliburton has been regularly charging the army forty-five dollars for a six pack of soda manufactured in the middle east and ninety-nine dollars to clean a three dollar bag of laundry.

10. The tents provided by Halliburton for the soldiers to sleep in were, "completely moldy", according to Sgt. Kelly Dougherty of the Colorado National Guard. Many of these kids are getting sick form upper-respiratory infections.

11. Halliburton has been charging the American taxpayer (umm, that would be you and me) over three-hundred thousand dollars for three year leases on SUVs worth less than forty-five thousand that are used by the KBR executives themselves!

12. They are providing brand new trucks without oil filters, "so when the engine blows, what do you do? Buy a new truck and bill the government", according to Ben Carter.

13. Halliburton has routinely sent out convoys of empty trucks across the Iraqi desert in order to charge the military more money, needlessly putting the lives of the drivers at risk. Many have died as a result.

14. The deal that gave Halliburton its no-bid contract was coordinated by its former CEO, vice-president Dick Cheney.

15. Halliburton's stock has quadrupled since the beginning of the war in 2003.

16. All of the companies involved in what will eventually prove to be a trillion dollar rip-off in Iraq have political and financial ties to the Republican National Committee and the Bush White House.

17. Every single amendment that has been introduced to stop this wanton fraud and abuse has been killed by a Republican controlled congress.

Please buy the DVD of Iraq For Sale and show it to as many people as possible. It is the most important documentary to come out in years. We have got to put a stop to this obscenity. But we're only going to do it by making damned sure that both houses of congress are not given back to the Republicans next month. The last line of the film, spoken by Sgt. Geoff Millard, says it better than I can:

"I am a patriot. I love our country and I want our country to survive. And the survival of our country depends on us taking it back".

Amen, Brother Geoff!

Pray for peace.

Tom Degan
Goshen, NY

For more recent postings on this cesspool of LIBERAL propaganda, please go to the following link:




"Iraq For Sale" is still a very valid film five years after it was released. It should be seen by everyone in order to understand what that disgusting administration did to this country. Here is a link to order it off of Amazon.com:


Show it to the world.


At 2:45 PM, Anonymous Charles Moore said...

Well said, Tom, and what can be added except that we must really work to get out the Democratic vote to take back the House and the Senate and have a day of reckoning for these slimy bastards. The sad fact is that they care for nothing but power and money, and frankly I think that Bush has lost all interest in the war and doesn't give a damn if we win or lose.

At 7:31 PM, Blogger betmo said...

excellent- i linked

At 9:42 PM, Blogger msliberty said...

I went to the world premiere of this film in Santa Monica a couple of months ago, and had the privilege to listen to Robert Greenwald talk about what inspired him to make this film in the first place.

This is a must see documentary, especially for anyone who has ever asked themselves what we're really doing in Iraq.

At 10:02 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Got here from betmo's link. i would love to see this movie. How does one get there hands on it? The scary pat i sthat deep down I think most Americans do know this is going on; they just don't care.

At 11:16 PM, Blogger msliberty said...

BZ: You can get the video at www.iraqforsale.org for $12.95. Better yet, host a screeing of the film at your house and moveon.org will GIVE you the film as a thank you for spreading the word!

At 3:25 AM, Blogger Tom Degan's Daily Rant said...

Hey there, Ms. Liberty!
Just wanted to let you know that you have an excellent site. By the way, folks, I'm arrainging a showing of Iraq For Sale in my home town. If you live anywhere near Goshen, come and check it out. EVERYBODY must see this film.
Tom Degan

At 7:45 AM, Blogger landsker said...

Good points Tom.
Towards the end of Roman empire, Nero played music, whilst Rome was burning.
Caligula cared more for sex with his sister and his horse, than with the state of the Empire.

The "glory" of France, prior to the revolution was often seen as a collection of huge palaces and staely homes, with armies of servants and guards.

The Romans were attacked and defeated from without, the monarchy of France was attacked and defeated from within.

Fortunately for America, there are people attacking from both within and out.
Are the Iraqui resistance fighters friends of the american people?

Is it time?


At 11:24 AM, Anonymous Wilma Lamb said...

re bz; My feeling is people do know what is going on but with the Florida and Ohio voting, going into and staying in Iraq and all the crime sleaze special interest and other crimes and misdemeanors of this horror of an administration, they feel helpless to change it. Also so many people are working 2 and 3 jobs for basic survival they don't have time or energy to keep up on the news and the few who do are fed Faux news, Pat R, Jerry Foulwell et al lies and distortions and lack the time and resources to check out the facts

At 10:57 AM, Anonymous ely whitney said...


Thanks for posting the information about this Greenwald film. I wish I had a way to get a hold of it other than snail mail or through an expensive courier, I will have to just wait until I make a trip back into the states and get a copy somehow.

Charles Moore you are alluding to something very precise: that is when the shit hits the fan, those who have profited from these crimes need not only be punished but have all their ill gotten gains stripped fom them, and returned in reparation to the respective countries the USA military has destroyed to promote this gain.

BZ truly I do not think that the average american gives a rats rosy red ass about anything that does not directly concern them in comfort of their sofa and in front of the Boob Tube. If it were on the boob they would simply find the nearest channel supporting the latest epi of survival or american idol. Society needs to be reset in general, I say bring on the economic crash.

Wlima holding 2 or 3 jobs is another symptom of what is wrong with the whole pile of dog flop that is the american way of life. I gave it up and left (was fortunate to be able to do so) many are not in that position. The writing for me was when I calculated that the CEO of the company I worked for made more money than I could in two months (I am an engineer) during his morning dump ritual. How twisted is that??

Still every 6 months layoffs were happening to shore up the bottom line and yes his compensation was tied to the share price....hmmmm


PS Tom, I have been reading your blog for a while now, keep up the good work!!

At 11:09 PM, Anonymous Wilma Lamb said...

Eli Whitney, I am not being snide when I say this; you are lucky to be able to go elsewhere, so many millions are not. They are so deep in their rut they are unable to climb out. Single moms with little or no education, couples making minimum wage or below, a whole litany of woes and the price of oil going up causing prices of everyday necessities to rise along with it is pinching ALMOST everybody.

At 2:05 AM, Blogger larkrise said...

Richard Cheney is the most evil, abominable, despicable man in this country. He is worse than Bush because he has been the driving force behind the scenes. The man has no conscience whatsoever. He looks mean, because he IS vicious. He eyes have NO soul. He cares only for profit and power. He deserves to be equated with Goebbels and Himmler. Cheney and Halliburton should be charged with crimes against humanity.

At 2:12 AM, Blogger larkrise said...

Richard Cheney and his horrendus company, Halliburton rank among the most despicable, disgusting immoral entities in history. Cheney has NO conscience, NO sense of morality, and NO ethics. He is all about profit and power. There is no soul in this man's eyes. He looks vicious, because he IS vicious. Cheney and Halliburton should be charged with crimes against humanity. They will be remembered among the infamous like Goebbels, Himmler, and Krupp.

At 10:50 AM, Anonymous ely whitney said...


I know that you are not being snide when you make comment as you have, you are merely pointing to fact and that is in respect a large part of what each and everyone of us need do....point out what is wrong and get people to recognise the situation. Not an easy task.

We are all part of a the problem and we must all become part of the solution. I for one attempted to change the situation I was in and in so doing was fast tracked out of the company ( something I was planning anyway) rather uncerimoniously for being a so called shit disturber. In my defence all I attempted to do was to let the people in management know that what they did in the way of decisions was ethically and morally wrong and that their decisions affected the lives of not only the individual but families and often communities. They in their wisdom were concerned with one thing and one thing only, making money for the shareholder of which they belonged due to compensation agreements.

What I did not expect was how easily my fellow employees would turn on me as well and fall into the corporate line in defence of comapny policy. In their eyes one less employee made for more job security. Three years later the company is still reducing employees and chasing ever higher reductions of operational costs.

What I see is that americans in general look to these coporate elites as something special, almost as heroes or gods and as something they themselves wish they could be. I see the corporate management world for what is, a criminal sect for the sole purpose of making money for a slect few and be damned about anybody else.

Now does this parallel what we are seeing within the realm of the present administration??? You bet it does and while millions of people each night go hungry, go with out shelter or cannot get the medical atttention they need the bastards in the Govt a(includes both Repubs and Dems) will always make sure their corporate sponsors needs are addressed first thereby increasing hte bank account of said politicians.

The whole system has really become a stinking pile of dog flop and from my perspective the economic system must crash totally. Maybe then there will be a chance once again to build a system that truly represents everyone not just a select few... OK enough ranting...lol


At 9:02 AM, Anonymous Wilma Lamb said...

Ely that is not ranting, it is the cold hard truth. We are touted as a worshipping country. The problem is we worship money and power and not the true power which is Jehovah God and his son Jesus. Just read a little earlier Bush's stranglehold on Iraq's oil is just short of a fait accompli


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