Government Corruption News StoriesExcerpts of Key Government Corruption News Stories in Major Media
Note: This comprehensive list of government corruption news stories is usually updated once a week. Explore our full index to revealing excerpts of key major media news stories on several dozen engaging topics. And don't miss amazing excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.
It was the spring of 2002. Pakistani authorities burst into the house [Emad Hassan] shared with 14 other foreign students and brought them to a nearby prison. After two months of beatings and interrogation, the Pakistanis handed him over to the U.S. military. They stripped him of his clothes and put him in a diaper. Then they blindfolded him, placed earmuffs over his head and marched him onto a plane. When the aircraft landed, he soon learned he was in the U.S. prison at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba. For years, the White House has been trying to close Gitmo. As of early September, 52 of the 116 prisoners who remain at the U.S. facility have been cleared to be set free, a tacit admission, critics say, that they should never have been imprisoned. The Pakistani forces who took Hassan from his student housing, his lawyers say, received $5,000 from the U.S. military. This was typical. According to a 2006 analysis ... the vast majority of detainees at Guantánamo Bay were arrested by local groups eager to profit from the counterterrorism gold rush. His lawyers claim much of the U.S. government’s incriminating information comes from a small group of informants at Guantánamo who told interrogators what they wanted to hear. Many sold out their fellow detainees for small rewards. [In 2009] Obama’s task force cleared Hassan for release - a process that requires six federal agencies to agree that a prisoner doesn’t pose a national security threat.
Note: In 2015, Hassan was freed from Gitmo and granted asylum by Oman. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing civil liberties news articles from reliable major media sources.
The British government can tap into the cables carrying the world’s web traffic at will and spy on what people are doing on some of the world’s most popular social media sites ... without the knowledge or consent of the companies. Documents taken from the National Security Agency by Edward Snowden and obtained by NBC News detail how British cyber spies demonstrated a pilot program to their U.S. partners in 2012 in which they were able to monitor YouTube in real time and collect addresses from the billions of videos watched daily, as well as some user information, for analysis. At the time the documents were printed, they were also able to spy on Facebook and Twitter. Called “Psychology A New Kind of SIGDEV" (Signals Development), the presentation includes a section that spells out “Broad real-time monitoring of online activity” of YouTube videos, URLs “liked” on Facebook, and Blogspot/Blogger visits. The monitoring program is called “Squeaky Dolphin.” Experts told NBC News the documents show the British had to have been either physically able to tap the cables carrying the world’s web traffic or able to use a third party to gain physical access to the massive stream of data. Representatives of Facebook and Google, which owns YouTube, said they ... were unaware the collection had occurred. The NSA does analysis of social media similar to that in the GCHQ demonstration. In 2010 ... GCHQ exploited unencrypted data from Twitter to identify specific users around the world and target them with propaganda.
Note: Read an article diving deeper and showing how online reputations are ruthlessly destroyed by powerful groups. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles about questionable intelligence agency practices and the erosion of privacy.
Tens of thousands of troops were used in testing conducted by the U.S. military between 1922 and 1975. The military wanted to learn how to induce symptoms such as "fear, panic, hysteria, and hallucinations" in enemy soldiers. Those who are still alive are part of a class action lawsuit against the Army. If they're successful, the Army will have to explain to anyone who was used in testing exactly what substances they were given and any known risks, [as well as] provide those veterans with health care for any illnesses that result, in whole or in part, from the testing. At least 70,000 troops were used in the testing. Researchers kept information about which agents they were administering from test subjects, [referring to the agents by] code names such as CAR 302668. That's one of the agents, records show, that researchers injected into Frank Rochelle in 1968. In 1975, the Army's chief of medical research admitted to Congress that he didn't have the funding to monitor test subjects' health after they went through the experiments. Since then, the military says it has ended all chemical and biological testing. Test subjects like Rochelle say that's not enough. "We were assured that everything that went on inside the clinic, we were going to be under 100 percent observation; they were going to do nothing to harm us," he says. "And also we were sure that we would be taken care of afterwards if anything happened. Instead we were left to hang out to dry."
Note: The rampant use of humans as guinea pigs in government, military, and medical experiments over the last century is laid out on this timeline. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing military corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.
A French secret service diver who took part in the operation to sink Greenpeace ship the Rainbow Warrior 30 years ago has spoken publicly for the first time to apologise for his actions. Jean-Luc Kister ... was one of two divers serving with the French intelligence service, the Direction générale de la sécurité extérieure (DGSE), who attached limpet mines to the hull of the vessel moored in Auckland in 1985. The Rainbow Warrior was heading for the Mururoa Atoll in the South Pacific in French Polynesia where France was planning a series of nuclear tests. French agents posing as Swiss tourists had earlier visited the ship ... to gather information for the operation. The first mine ... blew a large hole in the ship. Paris initially denied any involvement in the sinking, [which killed photographer Fernando Pereira], and described it as a “terrorist attack”. Documents released in 2005 and published in the Guardian, showed that France [also] tried to blame British intelligence for the sinking. The French government’s responsibility, however, was quickly established. In 1987, under international pressure, France paid $8.2m damages to Greenpeace. It also paid an undisclosed sum to the Pereira family. Kister claims politicians in Paris turned down other suggestions for dealing with the Greenpeace protest. He said it was “an unfair clandestine operation conducted in an allied, friendly and peaceful country” ... and accused French politicians of “high treason” for having leaked his name and role in the operation after the sinking.
Note: By posing as Swiss tourists to spy on the Greenpeace ship, attacking this ship, and then blaming the attack on "terrorists", the French carried out a "false flag" attack. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles about corruption in government and in the intelligence community.
More than 50 intelligence analysts at Centcom have formally complained that reports on the Islamic State and the Nusra Front — Al Qaeda's Syria branch — have been repeatedly altered by senior intelligence officials to fit with the Obama administration's insistence that the US is winning the war against the two militant groups. Former CIA deputy director Michael Morell explained on "CBS This Morning" how serious these allegations are. "One of the key aspects of the policymaking process in the United States is that analysts get to say what they think ... if there is truth that somebody has been meddling with their analysis, I think somebody needs to lose their job over it." A written complaint was sent in July by two Centcom senior analysts to the Department of Defense Inspector General. Eleven individuals knowledgeable about the details of the complaint [say] crucial parts of intelligence reports were taken out, analysts were subject to an environment in which they did not feel able to give a candid assessment of the situation in Iraq and Syria, and sometimes reports seen as being too negative were sent back to analysts. One source alleges that when [analysts] brought concerns to Centcom leadership, they were urged to retire, and some agreed to leave. In late July, the Associated Press reported that assessments by the CIA, the Defense Intelligence Agency, and others found that the Islamic State, also known as ISIS or ISIL, is no weaker than it was when US bombing began in 2014.
Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing terrorism news articles from reliable major media sources. Then explore an in-depth essay documenting the covert origins of Isis and other international terrorist organizations.
A US government-appointed agricultural body tried to crush a Silicon Valley food startup after concluding the company represented a “major threat” and “crisis” for the $5.5bn-a-year egg industry, according to documents obtained by the Guardian. In potential conflict with rules that govern how it can spend its funds, the American Egg Board (AEB) lobbied for a concerted attack on Hampton Creek, a food company that has created a low-cost plant-based egg replacement and the maker of Just Mayo, a mayonnaise alternative. The AEB attempted to have Just Mayo blocked from Whole Foods, asking Anthony Zolezzi, a partner at private equity firm Pegasus Capital Advisors ... to use his influence with Whole Foods to drop the product. (Whole Foods still sells Just Mayo.) More than one member of the AEB made joking threats of violence against Hampton Creek’s founder, Josh Tetrick. “Can we pool our money and put a hit on him?” asked Mike Sencer, executive vice-president of AEB member organization Hidden Villa Ranch. The AEB represents egg farmers across the US and its board is selected by the secretary of agriculture. The Department of Agriculture (USDA) ... suggested [additional] ways to put pressure on Hampton Creek. In January 2014, Roger Glasshoff, then the USDA’s head of shell eggs, told [Outgoing AEB head Joanne] Ivy to contact the FDA about Just Mayo directly. Last month the FDA ruled that Just Mayo could not be called mayonnaise because it does not contain eggs.
Note: Read another news article about Hampton's inspiring success. The USDA allows foods with non-organic ingredients to be labelled "USDA organic". The FDA has no problem allowing cloned animals into the food supply. When government corruption is the standard, anything is possible. But not egg-free mayo.
A little-noticed report on candidates for an open spot on the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) reaffirms that the reformist wing of the Democratic Party is winning the tactical battle over financial regulatory personnel. Luis Aguilar, one of three Democratic SEC commissioners on the five-member panel, announced he would step down in May. Initially, the White House floated as a replacement Keir Gumbs, who has passed ... from SEC staff to the white-collar corporate law firm Covington & Burling. Covington & Burling counts most major U.S. banks among its clients, and is the home of former Attorney General Eric Holder and several of his top deputies. While at Covington, Gumbs allegedly gave CEOs tutorials on how to avoid disclosing their corporate political spending. He also represented the American Petroleum Institute before the SEC. Months of criticism of both Gumbs and the SEC’s bank-friendly practices created a delay, with the White House agreeing to vet additional candidates. The Obama administration, despite a clear preference for moderates with Wall Street ties for financial regulatory positions, now must consider a far broader range of personnel. By forming a united front, [party reformers make] it more difficult for future Democratic administrations to use Wall Street as a policymaker talent pool. This significantly changes the landscape of the party, regardless of individual candidate views or the desires of Wall Street-aligned donors.
Thomas Demint's voice is heard only briefly on the eight-minute video he took of police officers arresting two of his friends, and body-slamming their mother. "I'm videotaping this, sir," he tells an officer. After he stopped recording, Demint says three officers tackled him, took away his smartphone and then tried, unsuccessfully, to erase the video. They then arrested him on charges of obstruction of governmental administration and resisting arrest. Demint is part of a growing trend of citizen videographers getting arrested after trying to record police behavior. "By all accounts the situation has gotten worse," said Chris Dunn ... of the New York Civil Liberties Union. "People are more inclined to pull out their phones and record, but that is often met with a very bad response from police." What makes the situation hard to define ... is that no one is ever arrested on a charge of recording police because that has widely been upheld as protected under the First Amendment. Instead, they are being hauled into court on obstruction, resisting arrest or other charges. Jonathan Turley, a law professor at George Washington University, said the right to take videos of police encounters in public is clearly protected by the First Amendment. He said the trend is for police to detain people who are shooting video, and subsequently drop the charges. "State and federal courts ... have made it abundantly clear that citizens have right to film police in public," he said. "Police are ignoring this clear precedent and continue to threaten citizens."
Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing civil liberties news articles from reliable major media sources.
The New York Times today has a truly bizarre article regarding the U.S. and cluster bombs. The Paper of Record [claims the U.S.] government, though refusing to sign the cluster ban treaty, has nonetheless “abided by its provisions.” This claim is totally false. The U.S. has long been and remains one of the world’s most aggressive suppliers of cluster munitions, and has used those banned weapons itself in devastating ways. In December 2009 - just weeks after he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize - President Obama ordered a cruise missile strike (that) “killed 35 women and children.” Among the munitions used in that strike were cluster bombs. Although the U.S. at first refused to confirm responsibility, a Yemeni journalist, Abdulelah Haider Shaye, visited the scene and found irrefutable proof that it was done by the U.S., a finding subsequently confirmed. Obama ... then forced the imprisonment for years of the Yemeni journalist who reported it. Under the treaty which The Paper of Record today claimed the U.S. honors: "Each State Party undertakes never under any circumstances to: (a) Use cluster munitions; (b) Develop, produce, otherwise acquire, stockpile, retain or transfer to anyone, directly or indirectly, cluster munitions; (c) Assist, encourage or induce anyone to engage in any activity prohibited to a State Party under this Convention. The U.S. does not occasionally violate one of those provisions. It continually violates all of them, systematically and as a matter of policy.
A new book, The WikiLeaks Files: The World According to U.S. Empire ... explains how the leaked U.S. documents have lifted the veil on the imperialist nature of American foreign policy. At the time of writing, WikiLeaks has published 2,325,961 diplomatic cables and other US State Department records. To randomly pick up isolated diplomatic records that intersect with known entities and disputes, as some daily newspapers have done, is to miss “the empire” for its cables. Diplomatic cables are not produced in order to manipulate the public, but are aimed at elements of the rest of the US state apparatus and are therefore relatively free from the distorting influence of public relations. When WikiLeaks publishes US government documents with classification markings ... two parallel campaigns begin: first, the public campaign of downplaying, diverting attention from and reframing any revelations that are a threat to the prestige of the national security class; and, second, an internal campaign within the national security state itself to digest what has happened. Publicly, the US government has claimed, falsely, that anyone without a security clearance distributing “classified” documents is violating the Espionage Act of 1917. The response of the United States to the release of the WikiLeaks materials betrays a belief that its power resides in a disparity of information: ever more knowledge for the empire, ever less for its subjects.
Note: Wikileaks has published everything from suspicious messages about 9/11 to cables showing US diplomats working directly for companies such as Monsanto to drafts of secret trade deals that big banks use to grow their power. PFC Manning is currently serving a 35 year prison sentence for leaking the data analysed in the book mentioned above.
A Pennsylvania judge was sentenced to 28 years in prison in connection to a bribery scandal that roiled the state's juvenile justice system. Former Luzerne County Judge Mark Ciavarella Jr. was convicted of taking $1 million in bribes from developers of juvenile detention centers. The judge then presided over cases that would send juveniles to those same centers. The case came to be known as "kids-for-cash." The Pennsylvania Supreme Court tossed about 4,000 convictions issued by Ciavarella between 2003 and 2008, saying he violated the constitutional rights of the juveniles, including the right to legal counsel and the right to intelligently enter a plea. Ciavarella, 61, was tried and convicted of racketeering charges earlier this year. More than a dozen people who said they had been affected by the judge's decision stood outside [the court house in Scranton, PA], awaiting the sentencing. Jeff Pollins was in that crowd. His stepson was convicted by Ciavarella. "These kids are still affected by it. It's like post traumatic stress disorder," Pollins told the Times Leader. "Our life is ruined. It's never going to be the same".
Note: Two crooked judges and a for-profit detention center company used millions of taxpayer dollars to systematically violate the rights of thousands of kids. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing prison industry corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.
Pediatrician Carla Nelson ... waited for the ambulance plane to take the infant from Waimea, on the island of Kauai, to the main children’s hospital in Honolulu. It was the fourth [severe heart malformation] she had seen in three years. There have been at least nine in five years, she says, shaking her head. That’s more than 10 times the national rate. Corn that’s been genetically modified to resist pesticides [is] a major cash crop on four of [Hawaii's] six main islands. In Kauai, chemical companies Dow, BASF, Syngenta and DuPont spray 17 times more pesticide per acre than on ordinary cornfields in the US mainland. About a fourth of the total are called Restricted Use Pesticides because of their harmfulness. Just in Kauai, 18 tons – mostly atrazine, paraquat (both banned in Europe) and chlorpyrifos – were applied in 2012. The World Health Organization this year announced that glyphosate, sold as Roundup, the most common of the non-restricted herbicides, is “probably carcinogenic in humans”. When the spraying is underway ... residents complain of stinging eyes, headaches and vomiting. At these times, many crowd the waiting rooms of the town’s main hospital, which was run until recently by Dow AgroSciences’ former chief lobbyist in Honolulu. The chemical companies that grow the corn ... refuse to disclose with any precision which chemicals they use, where and in what amounts, but they insist the pesticides are safe. Today, about 90% of industrial GMO corn grown in the US was originally developed in Hawaii.
Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing GMO news articles from reliable major media sources.
It is now legal for law enforcement in North Dakota to fly drones armed with everything from Tasers to tear gas thanks to a last-minute push by a pro-police lobbyist. House Bill 1328 wasn’t drafted that way. The bill’s stated intent was to require police to obtain a search warrant from a judge in order to use a drone to search for criminal evidence. In fact, the original draft of Representative Rick Becker’s bill would have banned all weapons on police drones. Then Bruce Burkett of the North Dakota Peace Officer’s Association was allowed ... to amend HB 1328 and limit the prohibition only to lethal weapons. “Less than lethal” weapons like rubber bullets, pepper spray, tear gas, sound cannons, and Tasers are therefore permitted on police drones. Even “less than lethal” weapons can kill though. At least 39 people have been killed by police Tasers in 2015 so far. The Grand Forks County Sheriff’s Department ... is hiding a full accounting of how many drone missions they’ve flown since 2012. The FAA notes 401 drone “operations” performed by the Grand Forks County Sheriff’s Department from 2012 to September 2014, while [County Sheriff Bob] Rost and [drone pilot Al] Frazier maintain just 21 missions have taken place. “We don’t make a practice of snooping on people,” Rost said recently. However, Rost’s statement was followed by an admission that the sheriff expects drones to be used in criminal investigations in the near future. Few noticed when HB 1328 passed with a clause allowing them to be armed.
Note: For more along these lines, read about the increasing militarization of police in the U.S. after 9/11. Also, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles about ""non-lethal weapons", or read about how sophisticated and deadly some of these weapons technologies can be.
Aliens flew to earth on peace missions to prevent nuclear war between America and the Soviet Union at the start of the Cold War, according to a former Nasa astronaut. Dr Edgar Mitchell has made a series of increasingly bizarre claims about extra terrestrial life. His status as the sixth man to walk on the moon - during the Apollo 14 mission in 1971 - gives his claims a ready audience. Now he says military top brass saw UFOs visiting Earth during weapons tests in the 1940s at American missile bases and the famous White Sands Proving Ground, in the New Mexico desert, where the world's first nuclear bomb was detonated in 1945. "White Sands was a testing ground for atomic weapons - and that's what the extra-terrestrials were interested in ... they wanted to know about our military capabilities," [Mitchell said]. "My own experience talking to people has made it clear the ETs had been attempting to keep us from going to war and help create peace on Earth." He claims other officers manning missile silos or Pacific bases back up his claims with stories of alien spacecraft shooting down test rockets mid-flight.
Local police around the country are increasingly using high-tech mass surveillance gear that can vacuum up private information on entire neighborhoods. Many cops are ... purposefully hiding their spying from courts to avoid any scrutiny from judges. Two important news reports from the last week have shed light on the disturbing practices. The first investigation, done by USA Today’s Brad Heath, found: “In one case after another ... police in Baltimore and other cities used the phone tracker, commonly known as a stingray, to locate the perpetrators of routine street crimes and frequently concealed that fact from the suspects, their lawyers and even judges.” Stingrays are so controversial that some state legislatures have already passed laws restricting their use – which is exactly why police want to keep [their use] secret. The Wall Street Journal also reported last week about newer devices costing as little as a few hundred dollars [that] the police supposedly don’t think ... require a court order at all to use against potential suspects. These devices are handheld or can be attached to clothing. Not only are these cops violating the constitutional rights of defendants by spying on them without court orders, but, in some cases, they’re also allegedly dismissing felony cases involving potentially dangerous criminals, so they can prevent judges from ruling on whether their surveillance tactics are legal ... all to continue their blanket surveillance practices with minimal scrutiny.
Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles about the erosion of privacy rights.
The Associated Press sued the U.S. Department of Justice Thursday over the FBI's failure to provide public records related to the creation of a fake news story used to plant surveillance software on a suspect's computer. At issue is a 2014 Freedom of Information request seeking documents related to the FBI's decision to send a web link to the fake article to a 15-year-old boy suspected of making bomb threats to a high school. The FBI has used spyware before to pursue suspected criminals. AP strongly objected to the ruse, which was uncovered last year. AP General Counsel Karen Kaiser [wrote] in a 2014 letter to then-Attorney General Eric Holder, "It is improper and inconsistent with a free press for government personnel to masquerade as The Associated Press or any other news organization. The FBI may have intended this false story as a trap for only one person. However, the individual could easily have reposted this story to social networks, distributing to thousands of people, under our name, what was essentially a piece of government disinformation." In a November opinion piece in the New York Times, FBI Director James Comey revealed that an undercover FBI agent had also impersonated an AP reporter. AP's records request also seeks an accounting of how many times since 2000 the FBI has impersonated media organizations to deliver malicious software. In a response to AP, the FBI indicated it might take nearly two years to find and copy the requested records.
Note: According to The Guardian, the FBI forced an informant to hack into and compromise the computer systems of a major UK newspaper in 2011. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles about corruption in the intelligence community and the manipulation of mass media.
At the height of the Cold War in the 1950s, law enforcement and intelligence leaders like J. Edgar Hoover at the F.B.I. and Allen Dulles at the C.I.A. aggressively recruited onetime Nazis of all ranks. They believed the ex-Nazis’ intelligence value against the Russians outweighed what one official called “moral lapses” in their service to the Third Reich. The agency hired one former SS officer as a spy in the 1950s, for instance, even after concluding he was probably guilty of “minor war crimes.” In 1994, a lawyer with the C.I.A. pressured prosecutors to drop an investigation into an ex-spy outside Boston implicated in the Nazis’ massacre of tens of thousands of Jews in Lithuania. In 1980, F.B.I. officials refused to tell even the Justice Department’s own Nazi hunters what they knew about 16 suspected Nazis living in the United States. The bureau balked at a request from prosecutors for internal records on the Nazi suspects, memos show, because the 16 men had all worked as F.B.I. informants, providing leads on Communist “sympathizers.” Five of the men were still active informants. In all, the American military, the C.I.A., the F.B.I. and other agencies used at least 1,000 ex-Nazis and collaborators as spies and informants after the war, according to Richard Breitman, a Holocaust scholar at American University. The full tally ... is probably much higher. But many records remain classified even today, making a complete count impossible.
Note: What this article fails to mention is the Nazi doctors secretly used to teach the CIA mind control methods it perfected. Read an amazing, eye-opening summary on this. Then see the astounding declassified CIA documents on this program.
America’s Nazi transplants: scientists, academics and thinkers who were employed by the U.S. government, despite résumés full of horrid atrocities. Washington worked to protect them from the consequences of their horrible pasts. This information, revealed in detail for the first time in [Eric] Lichtblau’s book, “The Nazis Next Door: How America Became a Safe Haven for Hitler’s Men,” traces the legal battles and moral struggles surrounding the ... Operation Paperclip program, which brought former Nazi scientists to America to bolster the nation’s scientific community. Among the Third Reich transplants was the late Wernher von Braun, considered a legendary NASA space scientist who ... oversaw Hitler’s Mittelwerk slave labor factory. Another was the late Dr. Hubertus Strughold, who is still considered the “father of space medicine." Strughold ... helped orchestrate science experiments on human guinea pigs at the Dachau concentration camp. Even while the White House and its intelligence agencies were quietly employing some of the Nazis’ best minds in the nation’s scientific circles, mostly in a Huntsville, Alabama, military community, the Justice Department was secretly building cases against them. A deal was struck that allowed [Arthur] Rudolph to renounce his American citizenship and go quietly back to Germany in 1984. He was never charged with a war crime. No other Paperclip scientists were prosecuted for their past atrocities or complicity in Nazi war crimes.
Note: What this article fails to mention is the Nazi doctors secretly used to teach the CIA mind control methods it perfected. Read an amazing, eye-opening summary on this. Then see the astounding declassified CIA documents on this program.
The world’s largest defense contractor has agreed to pay $4.7 million to settle charges that it illegally used government money. Top executives for Lockheed Martin — who were being paid by the federal government to run Sandia National Laboratories — ran a fierce campaign to lobby [government] officials for a seven-year extension of their contract, [and] urged them to close the bidding to competition. To clinch the contract extension, Sandia labs officials hired high-priced consultants — including Heather A. Wilson, the former New Mexico congresswoman, who allegedly was paid $226,000. Wilson was not just on Lockheed’s payroll. From 2009 through 2011, she had consulting jobs for Lockheed and three other contractors managing the Energy Department’s national lab, charging taxpayers a total of $450,000. But the contractors could not document her work, said [Energy Department Inspector General Gregory] Friedman, whose staff found that the justification for the billing did “not meet even minimum standards” for federal payments.” Wilson ... left Congress in 2009. Jay Coghlan of Nuclear Watch New Mexico, called the deal a “slap on the wrist for the world’s biggest defense contractor to pay,” [and] wrote on the NuclearWatch blog Lockheed “engaged in deep and systemic corruption, including paying Congresswoman Heather Wilson $10,000 a month starting the day after she left office for so-called consulting services that had no written work requirements.”
Note: Lockheed Martin runs a breathtakingly big part of the United States. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles about corruption in government and in the corporate world.
The U.S. has now spent more on the reconstruction of Afghanistan than it spent on the Marshall Plan, which resuscitated Europe after World War II. The Marshall Plan delivered $103 billion in today’s dollars to 16 European countries between 1948 and 1952. That has now been topped by congressional appropriations for reconstruction in Afghanistan, which so far have come to $109 billion in today’s dollars. The difference: The Marshall Plan helped Europe get back on its feet, while Afghanistan is a chaotic mess. The Marshall Plan comparison is the most striking fact in a depressing, 259-page quarterly report to Congress issued July 30 by John Sopko, the congressionally appointed special inspector general for Afghanistan reconstruction. One recent audit ... raised concerns about the army’s ability to account for some 465,000 U.S.-provided small arms. This quarter, Sopko’s report says, a local police unit cut the power lines from Kabul ... “in retaliation for not being paid for three months.” To cut costs, NATO plans to shrink the Afghan National Security Forces to less than 230,000 by 2017. But an independent assessment ... concluded that the forces will require more than 370,000 people. That would cost three times as much as the Afghan government’s entire domestic revenue. Afghanistan’s main exports are carpets and rugs, dried fruits, medicinal plants, opium, and gems. But Sopko observes, “opiates are not part of the licit economy, and gems are easy to smuggle, so their contributions to government revenue are limited.”
Note: By 2000, the Taliban had mostly stopped heroin production in Afghanistan. But once this country was under US control, illicit drug production surged to record levels and Afghanistan became a narco state. How much "reconstruction" money became the drug cartel money that kept big banks afloat in 2008?
Important Note: Explore our full index to revealing excerpts of key major media news stories on several dozen engaging topics. And don't miss amazing excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.