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Private Contractors

Privatizing the War on Terror: America's Military Contractors

John W. Whitehead | Posted 03.18.2012 | Politics
John W. Whitehead

America's troops may be returning home from Iraq, but we're far from done paying the costs of war. In fact, at the same time that Obama is reducing the number of troops in Iraq, he's replacing them with military contractors at far greater expense to the taxpayer.

New Year, Same Old Pentagon: Three Takeaways from Panetta's National Security Strategy Presser

Project On Government Oversight | Posted 03.14.2012 | Politics
Project On Government Oversight

Nothing changes on New Year's Day, including the Pentagon's budget strategy.

Paul Blumenthal

19 Words Could Mean Big Disclosure Of Secret Money | Paul Blumenthal | Posted 12.16.2011 | Politics

WASHINGTON -- Hidden within the mammoth omnibus appropriations bill crafted by House, Senate and White House negotiators is a 19-word change to a ride...

Study Finds Gov. Workers Cheaper Than Contractors, As Politicians Tout Cutting Their Ranks

Posted 11.14.2011 | Business

The federal government could save billions of dollars by doing more work in-house instead of outsourcing to private contractors, a new study shows. ...

War and Private Contractors: Can't Live with Them, Can't Live Without Them

David Isenberg | Posted 11.02.2011 | Business
David Isenberg

Anybody who was dreaming that that the military was going to divest itself of contractors can put that fantasy to rest. Now that the CWC has said the government is over-reliant on contractors, you can see that we have a bit of a contradiction.

Eliminating Waste, Fraud and Abuse in Defense Contracts

Rep. John F. Tierney | Posted 09.25.2011 | Politics
Rep. John F. Tierney

We cannot continue to ask the brave men and women of our Armed Forces to put their lives on the line while we jeopardize their safety by failing to ensure that Defense Department funds are not siphoned off to warlords in Afghanistan.

GIGO: The Perennial PMSC Unanswered Questions

David Isenberg | Posted 09.04.2011 | Politics
David Isenberg

To paraphrase former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld's famous 2003 memo on the war on terror, today we lack metrics to fully understand the strengths and weaknesses of using PMSC.

Public Employees Offer Solutions. Examples.

Eric Lotke | Posted 08.01.2011 | Politics
Eric Lotke

Enough with blaming public employees for all of America's problems. Last week public employees in Oregon marched on the state Capitol with a billion d...

The Uncounted Contractor Casualties

David Isenberg | Posted 07.10.2011 | Business
David Isenberg

In the last two-to-three years, contractors have increasingly absorbed the most significant cost of our military actions. And contractor casualties are unlikely to decrease.

From 'Liberation' to Occupation: 10 Reasons Iraq Was No Cakewalk

Medea Benjamin | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Medea Benjamin

March 19 marks the eighth anniversary of the invasion of Iraq. At the onset, Ken Adelman predicted that "liberating Iraq would be a cakewalk." Eight years on, it's time to look back at that "cakewalk."

Amanda Terkel

Pentagon Paid Billions To Contractors Suspended For Fraud | Amanda Terkel | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics

WASHINGTON -- The military paid a total of $285 billion to more than 100 contractors between 2007 and '09, even though those same companies were defra...

Afghan Taxman Targets U.S. Contractors

Posted 05.25.2011 | World

Afghanistan's government is on course for conflict over plans to tax foreign contractors operating in the country. The New York Times reports that t...

PMC: Past, Present, and Future

David Isenberg | Posted 05.25.2011 | Business
David Isenberg

Hmm, celebrate my birthday today or write the final PMC post for 2010? Hey, I'm a multitasking man; no reason I can't do both. It's been precisely a ...

Shadow Elite: WikiLeaks, FOIA and the Cultural Life of Government Secrecy

Michael G. Powell | Posted 05.25.2011 | World
Michael G. Powell

When we become aware of government secrecy -- as we do through redaction in WikiLeaks document dumps -- it raises our consciousness about the exercise of power and especially the potential abuse of that power.

Profit-Chasing Guns-for-Hire Are Killing Us in Iraq and Afghanistan

Robert Greenwald | Posted 05.25.2011 | World
Robert Greenwald

The use of private contractors in Iraq and Afghanistan makes a few people very, very rich, but it's making the rest of us -- Americans and local civilians alike -- much less safe.

Wikileaks: War Is (Misbegotten) Hell

Heather Hurlburt | Posted 05.25.2011 | World
Heather Hurlburt

The flood of data from Wikileaks makes it harder, not easier, to see the patterns that we still need to learn from this misbegotten war.

Afghanistan's Massive Contracting Fraud

Malou Innocent | Posted 05.25.2011 | World
Malou Innocent

It appears that foreign aid in Afghanistan is still plagued by pervasive mismanagement, poor oversight, and inadequate on-the-ground coordination.

U.S. Contractor Accused Of Fraud Still Winning Big Projects In Afghanistan

McClatchy | Posted 05.25.2011 | World

On July 31, 2006, an employee of the Louis Berger Group, a contractor handling some of the most important U.S. rebuilding projects in Afghanistan, han...

Dana Priest's Expose On 'Top Secret America' | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics

The top-secret world the government created in response to the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, has become so large, so unwieldy and so secretive ...

What Is President Obama Thinking?

Ken Blackwell | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Ken Blackwell

Why has the Obama administration dug in its heels on the Joint Strike Fighter? Is it an example of successful lobbying? Could a single defense contractor really have that much influence over the Obama administration?

Shadow Elite: Selling Out Uncle Sam - The Collision of State & Private Power

Janine R. Wedel | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Janine R. Wedel

When government contractors hire former directors of intelligence and defense-related government agencies, they are banking on coincidences of interest between their hires and their hires' former (government) employers.

Sam Stein

Hamid Karzai: U.S. Taxpayer-Funded Private Contractors Engaging In Terrorist, Mafia-Like Activity | Sam Stein | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics

Afghanistan's embattled president Hamid Karzai said on Sunday that U.S. taxpayers were indirectly funding "mafia-like groups" and terrorist activities...

Sunday Roundup

Arianna Huffington | Posted 05.25.2011 | World
Arianna Huffington

I've been on vacation in Greece this week, regularly interrupted by bulletins about the dismal economic news back in America: bankruptcy filings at their highest since 2005; new unemployment claims surpassing 500,000. I was in the Ionian Islands when I read Paul Krugman's column about how we're engaging "in human sacrifices to appease the anger of invisible gods" -- allowing the obsession with deficit reduction to trump job creation. Surrounded by the monuments my ancestors built to appease the Greek gods, I found Krugman's analogy particularly chilling. The perverse priorities of "the apostles of austerity" were on display with the news that the U.S. is planning to turn much of the ongoing security work in Iraq over to private contractors -- a transition that will cost taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars. How come those demanding sacrifice from millions of Americans never seem to have a problem with writing that kind of check?

Jason Linkins

U.S. Contractors Are Failing To Pay Afghans And 'Fueling The Insurgency' | Jason Linkins | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics

If you'll forgive a gross oversimplification, the basic task of the United States in Afghanistan is to establish some basic governing institutions in ...

Let's Make the Welfare of the American People the Goal of the Fiscal Commission

Rep. Jan Schakowsky | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Rep. Jan Schakowsky

The welfare of the American people must be the goal of our fiscal policy. Everything we do here must be measured in terms of the impact on the well-being of our people,