Military Corruption News StoriesExcerpts of Key Military Corruption News Stories in Major Media
Note: This comprehensive list of military 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.
More than a dozen U.S. veterans who say they were raped or assaulted by comrades filed a class-action suit in federal court [on February 15] attempting to force the Pentagon to change how it handles such cases. The current and former service members - 15 women and two men - describe circumstances in which servicemen allegedly got away with rape and other sexual abuse while their victims were ordered to continue to serve with them. The alleged attackers in the lawsuit include an Army criminal investigator and an Army National Guard commander. The abuse alleged ranges from obscene verbal abuse to gang rape. "The problem of rape in the military is not only service members getting raped, but it's the entire way that the military as a whole is dealing with it," said Panayiota Bertzikis, who is a plaintiff in the lawsuit and claims she was raped in 2006. "From survivors having to be involuntarily discharged from service, the constant verbal abuse, once a survivor does come forward your entire unit is known to turn their back on you. The entire culture needs to be changed."
United States taxpayers have funneled more than $60 billion of aid into Egypt since President Hosni Mubarak came to power in 1981, but more than half of the money has been spent supplying weapons to the country’s military. About $34 billion of the aid to Egypt has come in the form of grants that Congress requires Egypt to spend on American military hardware. In recent years the large amount of aid earmarked for the military, and the relatively low sums supporting civilian aid, have attracted scathing criticism from Egyptians, some of whom argue that US aid has gone to entrench a military dictator at the expense of the fledgling democracy activists. During the early turmoil, protesters were the target of tear gas canisters that read "made in the USA," fueling debate about the aid. Last year, Egypt was the fifth-largest recipient of US aid, getting $1.6 billion. Congress ... authorized major aid packages to both [Egypt and Israel in 1979], using an informal formula — not enshrined in the peace treaty — that gave Egypt $2 for every $3 that Israel received. Israel quickly became the largest recipient of US aid, and Egypt the second-largest — rankings that were only recently overtaken by wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and last year, the disaster in Haiti. The strong interest of US companies could help explain why US military assistance to Egypt has remained at $1.3 billion a year, while its civilian economic assistance has steadily shrunk, from $815 million a decade ago to $250 million requested for 2011. The decline began in 1998, when Israel arranged for a reduction in economic support and an increase military aid. As Israeli’s economic aid shrunk, so too did Egypt’s.
Note: Israel receives about $3 billion a year from the US, yet the population of the country is 8 million. If you do the math, the US is providing the equivalent of nearly $4,000 in aid per year to every man, woman and child in Israel, with $3,000 of that to buy US military hardware. For lots more reliable information on how the military/industrial complex manipulates world politics to support the war machine, click here and here.
The Army’s very strange webpage on "Voice-to-Skull" weapons has been removed. It was strange it was there, and it’s even stranger it’s gone. If you Google it, you’ll see the entry for "Voice-to-Skull device," but, if you click on the website, the link is dead. The entry, still available on the Federation of American Scientists‘ website reads: "Nonlethal weapon which includes (1) a neuro-electromagnetic device which uses microwave transmission of sound into the skull of persons or animals by way of pulse-modulated microwave radiation; and (2) a silent sound device which can transmit sound into the skull of person or animals." The U.K.-based group Christians Against Mental Slavery first noted the change (they also have a permanent screenshot of the page). A representative of the group tells me they contacted the Webmaster, who would only tell them the entry was "permanently removed."
Note: We don't usually use Wired as a source, but this is a very important article on a vital topic with key links for verification. For lots more on this strange topic in a Washington Post article, click here.
A mock city roughly the size of downtown San Diego has risen in a remote Southern California desert to train military forces to fight in urban environments. The $170 million urban training center was unveiled [on January 25] at the Twentynine Palms military base, 170 miles northeast of San Diego. The 1,560-building facility will allow troops to practice and refine skills that can be used around the world, the Marine Corps said. The military has been opening a slew of mock Afghan villages at bases across the country to prepare troops for battle before they are deployed. The new training center is one of the largest and most elaborate. Seven separate mock city districts spread across 274 acres of desert. The facility has almost 1,900 feet of underground tunnels, a manmade riverbed and dozens of courtyards and compounds. More than 15,000 Marines and sailors can train simultaneously in the massive simulator to experience the difficulties they will face during deployments. The new center expanded a similar training program called Mojave Viper that launched in 2005 to prepare troops for the Iraq war. In November, the Marine Corps unveiled a $30 million expansion of its mock Afghan village at Camp Pendleton that nearly quadrupled its size. Similar immersion training facilities are slated to open this year at Marine Corps bases in North Carolina, Hawaii and Okinawa.
Note: With the US national debt spiraling out of control and education and welfare being cut, why is the military spending $170 million on this?
Coming to you soon from the Pentagon: the diary to end all diaries — a multimedia, digital record of everywhere you go and everything you see, hear, read, say and touch. Known as LifeLog, the project has been put out for contractor bids by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, or DARPA, the agency that helped build the Internet and that is now developing the next generation of [surveillance] tools. The agency ... [considers] LifeLog ... a tool to capture "one person's experience in and interactions with the world" through a camera, microphone and sensors worn by the user. Everything from heartbeats to travel to Internet chatting would be recorded. The goal is to create breakthrough software that helps analyze behavior, habits and routines, according to Pentagon documents reviewed by The Associated Press. The products of the unclassified project would be available to both the private sector and other government agencies — a concern to privacy advocates. John Pike of Global Security.org, a defense analysis group, is dubious the project has military application. "I have a much easier time understanding how Big Brother would want this than how (Defense Secretary Donald) Rumsfeld would use it," Pike said. "They have not identified a military application."
Note: For more on this at Wired, click here.
The Army's official history of the battle of Wanat - one of the most intensely scrutinized engagements of the Afghan war - largely absolves top commanders of the deaths of nine U.S. soldiers and instead blames the confusing and unpredictable nature of war. An initial draft of the Wanat history, which was obtained by The Washington Post and other media outlets in the summer of 2009, placed the preponderance of blame for the losses on the higher-level battalion and brigade commanders who oversaw the mission, saying they failed to provide the proper resources to the unit in Wanat. The final history, released in recent weeks, drops many of the earlier conclusions and instead focuses on failures of lower-level commanders. Family members of the deceased at Wanat reacted with anger and disappointment to the final version of the Army history. "They blame the platoon-level leadership for all the mistakes at Wanat," said retired Col. David Brostrom, whose son was killed in the fighting. "It blames my dead son. They really missed the point." The initial investigation, conducted by a three-star Marine Corps general and completed in the spring, found that the company and battalion commanders were "derelict in their duty" to provide proper oversight and resources to the soldiers fighting at Wanat.
Note: For many key reports from reliable sources on the horrific realities of the US wars of aggression in Afghanistan and Iraq, click here.
Nine years after the terrorist attacks of 2001, the United States is assembling a vast domestic intelligence apparatus to collect information about Americans, using the FBI, local police, state homeland security offices and military criminal investigators. The system, by far the largest and most technologically sophisticated in the nation's history, collects, stores and analyzes information about thousands of U.S. citizens and residents, many of whom have not been accused of any wrongdoing. The months-long investigation [by The Washington Post], based on nearly 100 interviews and 1,000 documents, found that: * Technologies and techniques honed for use on the battlefields of Iraq and Afghanistan have migrated into the hands of law enforcement agencies in America. * The FBI is building a database with the names and certain personal information, such as employment history, of thousands of U.S. citizens and residents whom a local police officer or a fellow citizen believed to be acting suspiciously. * Law enforcement agencies have hired as trainers self-described experts whose extremist views on Islam and terrorism are considered inaccurate and counterproductive by the FBI and U.S. intelligence agencies. * The Department of Homeland Security sends its state and local partners intelligence reports with little meaningful guidance, and state reports have sometimes inappropriately reported on lawful meetings.
Note: This report is part of a series, "Top Secret America," by The Washington Post. For more, click here.
The Obama administration is preparing an executive order that would formalize indefinite detention without trial for some detainees at the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba ..., U.S. officials said. Some civil liberties groups oppose any form of indefinite detention. "Indefinite detention without charge or trial is wrong, whether it comes from Congress or the president's pen," said Laura W. Murphy, director of the American Civil Liberties Union's Washington legislative office. "Our Constitution requires that we charge and prosecute people who are accused of crimes. You cannot sell an indefinite detention scheme by attaching a few due-process baubles and expect that to restore the rule of law. That is bad for America and is not the form of justice we want other nations to emulate." Legislation supported by some Republicans ... would create a system of indefinite detention not only for some Guantanamo detainees but also for future terrorism suspects seized overseas.
Note: Why are so few people speaking out about indefinite detention, when it is done in a way that gives the person detained virtually no legal rights or recourse? This clearly violates the sixth amendment to the US Constitution which states, "the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial."
Gordon R. England's appointment to a top Pentagon post in 2006 came at a high price. The Senate committee overseeing his confirmation demanded that he give up lucrative stocks and options he held in companies that do business with the military. England said he took a big hit on his taxes and lost out on more than $1 million in potential profits that year when he divested himself of interests in companies that included General Dynamics. If he had been a senator, he would not have had to sell anything. The Senate Armed Services Committee prohibits its staff and presidential appointees requiring Senate confirmation from owning stocks or bonds in 48,096 companies that have Defense Department contracts. But the senators who sit on the influential panel are allowed to own any assets they want. And they have owned millions in interests in these firms. The committee's prohibition is designed to prevent high-ranking Pentagon officials from using inside information to enrich themselves or members of their immediate family. But panel members have access to much of the same inside information, because they receive classified briefings from high-ranking defense officials about policy, contracts and plans for combat strategies and weapons systems. "I think Congress should live by the rules they impose on other people," said England, who served as deputy defense secretary under George W. Bush until 2009.
Note: Congress is amost always exempt from it's own rules, as further described in this powerful Time magazine article. This is one major source of rampant corruption in US government. For more on government corruption, click here.
Sexual assault pervades the military, but the Pentagon refuses to release records that fully document the problem and how it is handled, the American Civil Liberties Union and other groups said in a federal lawsuit that seeks access to the records. Tens of thousands of service members have reported some form of sexual assault, harassment or trauma in the past decade, according to the lawsuit filed [on December 13] in New Haven against the departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs. "The government's refusal to even take the first step of providing comprehensive and accurate information about the sexual trauma inflicted upon our women and men in uniform ... is all too telling," said Anuradha Bhagwati, a former Marine captain. The government prosecutes 8 percent of military sex offenders, while 40 percent of civilian sex offenders are prosecuted. The lawsuit contends sexual assaults are nearly twice as common within military ranks as in civilian society, and surveys show that nearly one in three women report being sexually assaulted during their time in the military. About 80 percent of unwanted or threatening sexual acts are not reported, according to the lawsuit. Victims who report abuse to their superiors often face social isolation, retribution and counteraccusations, the lawsuit says.
The Air Force is barring its personnel from using work computers to view the Web sites of The New York Times and more than 25 other news organizations and blogs that have posted secret cables obtained by WikiLeaks, Air Force officials said. When Air Force personnel on the service’s computer network try to view the Web sites of The Times, the British newspaper The Guardian, the German magazine Der Spiegel, the Spanish newspaper El País and the French newspaper Le Monde, as well as other sites that posted full confidential cables, the screen says “Access Denied: Internet usage is logged and monitored,” according to an Air Force official whose access was blocked and who shared the screen warning with The Times. Violators are warned that they face punishment if they try to view classified material from unauthorized Web sites. Some Air Force officials acknowledged that the steps taken might be in vain since many military personnel could gain access to the documents from home computers, despite admonishments from superiors not to read the cables without proper clearances.
Note: For key reports from major media sources on government secrecy, click here.
Is [General David Petraeus] confident that the Afghan army can take the lead from U.S. forces by NATO's 2014 deadline? After nine years of war fewer Afghans support a U.S. presence in the country and fewer believe that the United States makes their country any safer, according to a new ABC News/ Washington Post poll – something that the U.S. “clearly” needs to continue to work on, Petraeus said. Petraeus said he is “not sure” why support for the U.S. presence has slipped over the last year. Petraeus said it is “hard to say” how much of Afghanistan the Taliban control. He also acknowledged a “resilient” enemy that regenerates, which is why he said this war will take a “sustained, substantial commitment.” So what does the end of our “substantial commitment” in Afghanistan look like? Victory will not come with the U.S. planting a flag on a hill and going home to a victory parade, Petraeus said. “It looks like an Afghanistan that can secure and govern itself. And it's one that incrementally demonstrates the ability to do that, not suddenly. Between the summer of 2011 and the end of 2014 there will be, again, a series of transitions, starting most likely at districts, not in overall provinces,” he said.
Note: What does victory mean here? Could it be that Petraeus is revealing his support of the war profiteers and power elite of our world? For more on this critical topic by a very different, yet highly decorated US general, click here.
The Obama administration has quietly forged ahead with its proposal to sell $60 billion worth of fighter jets and attack helicopters to Saudi Arabia unhampered by Congress, despite questions raised in legislative inquiries and in an internal congressional report about the wisdom of the deal. The massive arms deal would be the single largest sale of weapons to a foreign nation in the history of the U.S., outfitting Saudi Arabia with a fully modernized, potent new air force. Critics are questioning the deal, and the stealthy effort by the Obama administration to avoid a more probing congressional review by notifying Congress last month, just as members were headed home for the November elections. Congress had 30 days to raise objections -- a review period that concludes Saturday. The arrangement would ship 84 F-15 fighter jets and more than 175 attack helicopters to the Saudis over the next 15 years. Morris J. Amitay, a former head of the Pro-Israel lobbying group AIPAC, told ABC News a chief aim of the sale is insuring that Saudi Arabia can serve as another regional military counterweight to Iran. In part for that reason, he said, Israel has not been raising significant objections to the deal, even though he suspects Israel will push hard to insure the aircraft are not equipped with weapons systems as advanced as those held by Israel's own military.
Note: For lots more from reliable sources on war and war preparations in the Middle East, click here.
For [many] years, sci-fi writers have imagined weapons that might use energy waves or pulses to knock out, knock down, or otherwise disable enemies--without necessarily killing them. And for a good 40 years the U.S. military has quietly been pursuing weapons of this sort. Much of this work is still secret. But now ... the search for weapons that could incapacitate people without inflicting lethal injuries has intensified. Police, too, are keenly interested. Scores of new contracts have been let, and scientists, aided by government research on the "bioeffects" of beamed energy, are searching the electromagnetic and sonic spectrums for wavelengths that can affect human behavior. Recent advancements in miniaturized electronics, power generation, and beam aiming may finally have put such pulse and beam weapons on the cusp of practicality. Scientists say they are natural successors to projects already underway--beams that disable the electronic systems of aircraft, computers, or missiles, for instance. "Once you are into these antimateriel weapons, it is a short jump to antipersonnel weapons," says Louis Slesin, editor of the trade journal Microwave News. That's because the human body is essentially an electrochemical system, and devices that disrupt the electrical impulses of the nervous system can affect behavior and body functions. But these programs--particularly those involving antipersonnel research--are so well guarded that details are scarce. "People [in the military] go silent on this issue," says Slesin, "more than any other issue. People just do not want to talk about this."
Note: For key reports from reliable sources on so-called "non-lethal weapons, click here.
Much of what the Pentagon knows about the effects of bacterial attacks on cities came from ... secret tests conducted on San Francisco and other American cities from the 1940s through the 1960s, experts say. In the 1950s, Army researchers dispersed Serratia on Panama City, Fla., and Key West, Fla., with no known illnesses resulting. They also released fluorescent compounds over Minnesota and other Midwestern states to see how far they would spread in the atmosphere. The particles of zinc-cadmium-sulfide -- now a known cancer-causing agent -- were detected more than 1,000 miles away in New York state, the Army told the Senate hearings. In New York, military researchers in 1966 spread Bacillus subtilis variant Niger, also believed to be harmless, in the subway system by dropping lightbulbs filled with the bacteria onto tracks in stations in midtown Manhattan. The bacteria were carried for miles throughout the subway system. The Army kept the biological-warfare tests secret until word of them was leaked to the press in the 1970s. Between 1949 and 1969 ... open-air tests of biological agents were conducted 239 times, according to the Army's testimony in 1977 before the Senate's subcommittee on health. In 80 of those experiments, the Army said it used live bacteria that its researchers at the time thought were harmless. Several medical experts have since claimed that an untold number of people may have gotten sick as a result of the germ tests. These researchers say even benign agents can mutate into unpredictable pathogens once exposed to the elements.
Note: Reading the full article on the Wall Street Journal website requires a paid subscription. You can read it free at this link. Considering that the army kept all of these tests secret for decades, is it possible that they are keeping information on chemtrails secret from the public? For lots more on the government secretly using unsuspecting citizens as guinea pigs in its risky experiments over the years, click here. For powerful evidence that this is still happening, click here.
A grim picture of the US and Britain's legacy in Iraq has been revealed in a massive leak of American military documents that detail torture, summary executions and war crimes. Almost 400,000 secret US army field reports have been passed to the Guardian ... via the whistleblowing website WikiLeaks. The new logs detail how: • A US helicopter gunship involved in a notorious Baghdad incident had previously killed Iraqi insurgents after they tried to surrender. • More than 15,000 civilians died in previously unknown incidents. The logs record 66,081 non-combatant deaths out of a total of 109,000 fatalities. The numerous reports of detainee abuse, often supported by medical evidence, describe prisoners shackled, blindfolded and hung by wrists or ankles, and subjected to whipping, punching, kicking or electric shocks. Six reports end with a detainee's apparent death. The whistleblowing activists say they have deleted all names from the documents that might result in reprisals.
Note: For an analysis by the Ad Hoc Committee for Justice for Iraq of the still very one-sided picture of the devastation of Iraq provided by this leak of Iraq war logs, click here. For an interview of the leader of Wikileaks on CNN in which he walks out after being asked about his personal life rather than Iraqi deaths, click here.
The British military has been training interrogators in techniques that include threats, sensory deprivation and enforced nakedness in an apparent breach of the Geneva conventions. Training materials drawn up secretly in recent years tell interrogators they should aim to provoke humiliation, insecurity, disorientation, exhaustion, anxiety and fear in the prisoners they are questioning, and suggest ways in which this can be achieved. A manual prepared in April 2008 suggests that "Cpers" – captured personnel – be kept in conditions of physical discomfort and intimidated. Sensory deprivation is lawful, it adds, if there are "valid operational reasons". It also urges enforced nakedness. More recent training material says blindfolds, earmuffs and plastic handcuffs are essential equipment for military interrogators, and says that while prisoners should be allowed to sleep or rest for eight hours in each 24, they need be permitted only four hours unbroken sleep. It also suggests that interrogators tell prisoners they will be held incommunicado unless they answer questions. The 1949 Geneva conventions prohibit any "physical or moral coercion", in particular any coercion employed to obtain information. All the British classified training material was produced after the death of Baha Mousa, the Iraqi hotel receptionist tortured to death by British troops in Basra in September 2003.
Note: For a survey of historic and contemporary uses of torture, click here. For more disturbing information on how Nazi torture techniques were eventually used by the CIA for mind control, click here.
Anwar Al-Awlaki may be the first American on the CIA's kill or capture list, but he was also a lunch guest of military brass at the Pentagon within months of the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks. Documents exclusively obtained by Fox News ... state that Awlaki was taken to the Pentagon ... in the immediate aftermath of the attacks. A current Defense Department employee ... came forward and told investigators she helped arrange the meeting after she saw Awlaki speak in Alexandria, Va. The employee "attended this talk and ... she recalls being impressed by this imam. He condemned Al Qaeda and the terrorist attacks," reads one document. "After her vetting, Aulaqi (Awlaki) was invited to and attended a luncheon at the Pentagon in the secretary of the Army's Office of Government Counsel." Awlaki, a Yemeni-American who was born in Las Cruces, N.M., was interviewed at least four times by the FBI in the first week after the attacks because of his ties to the three [alleged] hijackers Nawaf al-Hazmi, Khalid al-Mihdhar and Hani Hanjour. The three ... were all onboard Flight 77 that [allegedly] slammed into the Pentagon.
Note: This article certainly raises suspicions that the amazing connections of Awlaki to so many recent terror incidents may not be unrelated to his now-established connections to the Pentagon shortly after 9/11.
Government scientists secretly removed body parts from a national serviceman who died after taking part in nerve gas experiments, a new inquest has been told. Up to 200 separate samples were taken from 20-year-old Ronald Maddison's brain, spinal cord, heart and skin - without his family's permission - days after he died at Porton Down, Wiltshire, the government top-secret chemical warfare research base, in 1953. The body parts have since been used in a number of experiments by scientists researching the effects of toxic chemical agents on human tissue. The original inquest, held in secret in 1953, found that Leading Aircraftman Maddison's death was accidental, but the new inquest will examine fresh evidence and decide whether the original verdict still stands. Mr Maddison ... was among hundreds of national servicemen who volunteered in the 1950s and '60s to take part in tests at Porton Down in the belief that they were helping scientists find a cure for the common cold. The airman died less than an hour after 200mg of the highly toxic Sarin nerve agent was placed on layers of cloth on the inside of his arm.
Outside this country, there is a widespread belief that U.S. military deployments in Central Asia mostly are about oil. An article in the Guardian of London headlined, “A pro-western regime in Kabul should give the U.S. an Afghan route for Caspian oil,” foreshadowed the kind of skeptical coverage the U.S. war now receives in many countries. Author George Monbiot ... wrote that the U.S. oil company Unocal Corp. had been negotiating with the Taliban since 1995 to build "oil and gas pipelines from Turkmenistan, through Afghanistan and into Pakistani ports on the Arabian sea." Unocal pulled out of the deal after the 1998 terrorist attacks on U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania were linked to terrorists based in Afghanistan. The terrorist acts of Sept. 11, though tragic, provided the Bush administration a [pretext] to invade Afghanistan, oust the recalcitrant Taliban and, coincidentally, smooth the way for the pipeline. To make things even smoother, the U.S. engineered the rise to power of two former Unocal employees: Hamid Karzai, the new interim president of Afghanistan, and Zalmay Khalizad, the Bush administration’s Afghanistan envoy. [Uri] Averny, a former member of the Israeli Knesset ... argues that the war on terrorism provides a perfect pretext for America’s imperial interests. “If one looks at the map of the big American bases created for the war, one is struck by the fact that they are completely identical to the route of the projected oil pipeline to the Indian Ocean.” No wonder the rest of the world is a bit skeptical about our war on evildoers.
Note: Why do so few people know that these two top officials of Afghanistan were once paid by an American oil company? For important reports from major media sources on the realities of the "war on terror," click here.
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.