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A Decade Later, Contractor Pays Out Millions for Iraq Prisoner Abuse

Photo from the Guardian UK

Robert Beckhusen – (Wired – Danger Room) – January 9, 2012 – It’s been nearly a decade since private military contractors and U.S. soldiers worked together to torture Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib. Now, for the first time, one of the companies involved in the Abu Ghraib scandal has been forced to pay victims for the abuse.

The $5.28 million settlement — which was disclosed by the Securities and Exchange Commission in November but “which has gone essentially unnoticed,” according to the Associated Press — involves 71 former inmates of Abu Ghraib and other U.S.-run prisons, and private security firm L-3 Services Inc., a subsidiary of Engility Holdings of Chantilly, Virginia.

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Where’s the fraud ceiling?… & other news

House probes policies on counterfeit military electronics
Michelle  M. Stein – (Medill News Service) – July 31, 2011 – WASHINGTON – Lawmakers from both parties are challenging the Department of Homeland Security over policies that they say impede efforts to stop imports of counterfeit electronics used in military devices.

The electronic chips, which act like the brain for many electronic devices, are one of the most counterfeited parts in the Pentagon’s supply chain, according to a Commerce Department report last year. That leaves the military technology that depends on them at a great risk of failure, which experts say has huge national security implications.

“It’s very clear that there are significant numbers of (counterfeit) semiconductors that are making it through to military supply chains,” said Brian Toohey, the president of the Semiconductor Industry Association, a lobbying group. “The implications (of) that, from a reliability perspective, from a failure perspective, are very serious.”

Failing parts aren’t the only national security concern with counterfeit chips, experts say. (Click HERE for article)

Military mentors program casualty of disclosure law
Tom Vanden Brook – (USA Today) – WASHINGTON – July 29, 2011 – The number of retired generals hired by the Pentagon to advise the military has declined dramatically now that they must divulge outside income to avoid a conflict of interest and had their pay capped, according to reports obtained by USA TODAY.

Now that they must divulge outside income and have their pay capped, the number of retired generals hired by the Pentagon to advise the military has declined dramatically.

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