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Halliburton Adelaide Update

Richard TonkinRichard Tonkin is an investigative citizen journalist from Adelaide. His last piece on Webdiary was Raytheon's View Of Adelaide.

by Richard Tonkin

As Halliburton-KBR is accused of massive construction overcharges in Iraq I wonder how much the Adelaide office has been involved. For around five years this building was the Halliburton/KBR's Global Headquarters for Infrastructure (sorry, I'm not a good signwriter). As this was in the period before and after the Coalition's occupation of Iraq, you'd have to assume that a lot of the contentious paperwork would have passed through this building on its way from Iraq to Houston.

KBR_global_hq.jpgPhoto: Adelaide Indymedia

A report released last week by the US Special Inspector-General for Iraq Reconstruction. The International Herald Tribune has reported that

The highest proportions of overhead were incurred in oil-facility contracts won by KBR, the Halliburton subsidiary formerly known as Kellogg, Brown & Root, which has been challenged often in Congress and elsewhere because of its problems with projects in Iraq.

What happened according to the report was that the US sent KBR and other infrastructure contractors to Iraq before they were able to carry out any work. There the men and machinery sat and waited. According to Jim Mitchell, a spokesman for the inspector general, "The government blew the whistle for these guys to go to Iraq and the meter ran... The government was billed for sometimes nine months before work began."

The report also states that the actual costs for many projects could be even higher than the estimates because the United States has not properly tracked how much expense-money has been taken from the $18.4 billion of taxpayer-financed reconstruction approved by Congress two years ago.

The IHT also says that "The report does not explain why KBR's overhead costs on those contracts, for about $296 million, were more than 10 percent higher than any of the other companies audited. "

Perhaps the Inspector-General's office should be asking for paperwork held at the Greenhill Road office to be handed in, just for luck, for auditing? They'll have to be quick though, as President Bush last week abolished this particular mechanism for discovering infrastructure overcharging.

Through the presence of the Infrastructure G-HQ Australia may have a larger role in this tale of international overspending than we care to admit. However, it's possible that in the same way that Halliburton used its Cayman Islands office as a forwarding office to its Houston Headquarters for work in Iran , paperwork flowing to and from Iraq only passed through Adelaide as a matter of corporate convenience.

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Homeland Securty Scott Parkin Alert Level

Somebody named FOSP added this to my Houston Indymedia version of the Parkin story.

alert level...

Yep, if people start getting organised in their protests, the Bush Regime in both countries might indeed have something to fear.

Federal Court rules for Halliburton protester. Scott Parkin

 We may yet find out about the Halliburton Peanut Butter Files.  The Federal Court has found today that deported activist Scott Parkin does have a right to know why ASIO deported him.

(a quick recap... Newsweek reported in January that the Pentagon had kept a file on Parkin handing out sandwiches as a protest.  On the day before Septemberr 11 last year Parkin was arrested and placed in solitary confinement amidst claims he was a violent activist.  He was portrayed in Australian September 11 media as a threat to Australian security.)

Parkin told ABC Radio today that he'd be "..thrilled to come back to Australia." and that he  feels he has been vindicated.

ASIO can still appeal to the High Court, and Ruddock can still, under his new laws, have the information witheld under grounds of national security. 

It's far from over yet, but this sham may yet be exposed.


Abrahms tanks double parked at the Adelaide Club

With a $2 billion slush bucket funded by Aussie Struggle Street for the White Elephant GhostGhan-and-pipeline-forever franchise, those fly-by-night shotgun totin' crims in Halliburton could launder anything.

And isn’t this the not-on-the Reserve-Bank-Board Robert Gerard home town? And Wheat for Weapons AWB Alexander’s, too?

It’d be instructive, also, to see where Halliburton’s infrastructure fitted in with the BHP-Billiton crims’ Wheat for Oil for Weapons scam. Organised crims tend to hunt in packs, usually on golf courses.

They’ll be in on the Liberal Party’s kickback-motza for the Abrams tanks scam, too.

The dough’s just lying around like uncovered cat meat, and the bludgers are chewing on it until they’re gorged.

All that money pissed up against the wall and still no East Coast railway.

And hundreds of family farms with the arse outta their strides and not a cracker in drought relief money while corporate agri-business swills from the trough.

Where’s the Country Party, did anybody notice? Just a wan notion.

And just a deep, sonorous ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ from the lazy, languid, semicomatose National Party. That includes you, Blarnyby.

You know they’re calling your snowy-haired media mate Coonan the Barnabarian out in the sticks, don’t you? You and that Assembly of God bloke from the Family Fist should go on a New & Old Media vaudeville tour.

Jamie will fund it. He’s got cash to spare. He owes you. And he was VERY good to Steve last time.

The train track's buggered

There's been a bit of rain in the outback the last few days. Up before Tarcoola there's a lot of water around the track, and several double-decker goods carriages have fallen off. Australian Rail Track Corporation's David Marchant has said this morning that the track could be unusable for up to 48 hours, and the Ghan and Indian Pacific have been cancelled.

You wouldn't want to rely on getting the tanks to carrier ships in Darwin via the Haliliburton Expressway in a hurry if this could happen, now would you?

Frère Jacques, dormez jamais! You forgot to mention Gunner Bob, the ex defence minister now lapping imp the high life in New York in the same building as Premier Jimmy Olsen, Cheney's cub stooge who seems to have set up most of the shenanigans on Deadeye Dick's behalf.

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