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General Found to Break Rules on Wife’s Spa Trip, Free Meals

General William E. “Kip” Ward

In July 2010, Ward met in New York City with an unnamed “prohibited source” who runs an unnamed “construction management, engineering, technology and energy services company” with over $4 million in military contracts. Ward emailed him about “the show” that the two men and their families planned to see on Broadway. “All is set in New York” the contractor emailed Ward. “At 1900 the play starts we should be there by 1830 [sic]. HOOAH.” (The show appears to be Fences, as the Wards met backstage with the show’s star, Denzel Washington.) ~Spencer Ackerman – Wired – Top General Undone by Spa Treatments, Snickers, Broadway Show

(Updates with responses from Ward starting in fourth paragraph.)
David Lerman – (Bloomberg News) – August 17, 2012 -U.S. Army General William Ward used taxpayer money for personal trips, let his staff rent cars at public expense to take his wife to a spa, and accepted meals and Broadway theater tickets from a Defense Department contractor, according to the department’s inspector general.

Ward, who served as the first commander of Africa Command until last year, “engaged in multiple forms of misconduct related to official and unofficial travel,” wasted government money, and “misused his position,” according to a redacted version of an inspector general’s report obtained today through a Freedom of Information Act request.

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Tom’s all for relief, but here’s the story of how I got relieved unfairly in Iraq

Originally posted by Thomas E. Ricks – (Foreign Policy) July 25, 2012

By Col. Larry Wexler (U.S. Army, ret.)

Best Defense department of first person experience

I served i n Iraq from 2008-2009 and served as the deputy program director for LOGCAP Iraq. I was relieved of my duties in March 2009 after having apparently performed them just fine from October 2008 to March 2009. In January my supervisor recommended me for a Bronze Star for the work I was doing. He was stationed at Rock Island and came for a theater visit in February 2009. At no time did he mention any performance issues or his intentions to relieve me of my duties. What had transpired up to that time was I reported fraud, waste, and abuse on the part of the SERCO Management Contract and certain of the contractors and a failure to perform on the part of KBR on their contract. Prior to all this I had served 30 years in the Army in both active and reserve and extended my retirement a year to serve on the LOGCAP contract, had been promoted to Colonel, had command assignments up to 06 level and had attended the U.S. Army War College. I was also mobilized for two years on a joint assignment as the chief of staff of a deployable joint task force headquarters core element. In my civilian career I served as a vice president of corporate infrastructure — essentially purchasing and contracting.

Lockheed Martin Corporation Reaches $15.85 Million Settlement with U.S. to Resolve FCA Allegations

“It is troubling that a large defense contractor with long-established contractual ties with the United States failed to undertake appropriate measures to ensure the integrity and validity of the costs it submitted to the United States,” said Stuart F. Delery, Acting Assistant Attorney General for the Justice Department’s Civil Division.

U.S. Alleges Lockheed Subcontractor Inflated Costs for Military Aircraft Tools That Were Passed on to Government

(DoJ) – WASHINGTON – March 23, 2012 – Lockheed Martin Corporation has agreed to pay $15,850,000 to settle allegations that it mischarged perishable tools used on numerous government contracts, the Department of Justice announced today.  Lockheed Martin, headquartered in Bethesda, Md., is one of the world’s largest defense contractors.
 
Today’s settlement resolves allegations arising out of a pricing scheme by Tools & Metals Inc. (TMI), a subcontractor that sold perishable tools to Lockheed Martin for use on military aircraft, including the F-22 and the F-35 fighter jets.  Specifically, the allegations here are based on TMI’s inflating of the costs of these tools between 1998 and 2005.  The government alleged that Lockheed Martin passed these costs on to the United States under its various contracts with the government.  On Dec. 8, 2005, Todd B. Loftis, a former president of TMI, pleaded guilty and was sentenced to seven years in prison in connection with his role in TMI’s scheme.

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Look who’s whining now, the “chilling effects” of Pentagon budget cuts

USG Contractor

The war in Iraq is over and the war in Afghanistan is winding down. The United States is inching its way out of the worst recession in history. The one industry that has continued to thrive, while everyone else has held on fearing for their future, is the defense industry. During the political divisions, or maybe diversions is a more accurate term, within both the House and Senate, the lobbyists have seen to it their fat cat clients are untouchable.

Now, the gravy train is slowly coming to a stop and a sense panic appears to be descending on the corner offices of DoD contractors everywhere.

The prospect of budget cuts is having a “chilling effect” on the defense industry and companies such as Lockheed may stop hiring and training, Stevens, chairman and chief executive of the world’s largest defense contractor, said today at a conference in Washington. ~ Automatic Pentagon Cuts Must Be Stopped, Lockheed Chief Says

I am certain I’m not the first to say this, “It is about f’ing time these companies got off the taxpayer’s teat.” Read the remainder of this entry »

“We can’t do anything about it until we get the call.” How about you pick up the phone!

Worse than traitors in arms are the men who pretend loyalty to the flag, feast and fatten on the misfortunes of the nation while patriotic blood is crimsoning the plains of the south and their countrymen are moldering in the dust. ~Abraham Lincoln

In the last few weeks the DoD and other government entities have issued press releases requesting our help in identifying criminal acts committed hither and yon. They are asking for support in their new found “investigative momentum” against fraud in combat zones.

Not only did many critics consider the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction late to the game — opening its office seven years into the war — but already in its short life its first chief has resigned, the man who replaced him also quit, and Congress has blasted the agency for not living up to its mission.

I have heard from many readers that Afghanistan is crawling with fraud, waste and abuse.  Many have commented on the fact that the “good old boys” from Iraq simply switched out their  lanyards for a new color and are carrying on, business as usual.

Trent’s office is similar to its predecessor in America’s other war — the Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction, for which Trent has also worked. But while that office faced its own challenges, including a Republican-led effort to shut it down in 2006, the agency eventually came into its own and has been widely praised by lawmakers.

According to its own figures, the Iraq office has returned more than $154 million to taxpayers from seizures and other actions over the last seven years, and its investigations have lead to 57 convictions, many of them of military personnel, on charges including bribery, fraud, and money laundering. ~Director: Agency to get aggressive with fraud, waste in Afghanistan – Stars and Stripes

Here’s my problem with the statement above, first of all $157 million is merely a drop in the bucket.  According to reports, and there have been plenty, tens of BILLIONS have been misappropriated and wasted.  To date only a few small fry’s have seen the inside of a courtroom. 

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