#911Truth WTFact #13: War Profiteering and the Military-Industrial Complex
Did you miss the introduction to this year’s campaign?
The military-industrial complex is the informal partnership between the US government and the large corporations that the government purchases weapons and services from. It refers to a mutually beneficial relationship which works to stimulate more profit and control through fabricated war conflicts.
President Eisenhower warned America about the M-I-C taking over the world.
John F. Kennedy warned the people also.
Today, the MIC has taken over part of world affairs, largely driving policy decisions, this was part of the goal of the 9/11 attacks.
The video below is an embodiment of why many accuse Dick Cheney of war profiteering. It outlines the major shift to using contractors to support military action. The idea was to take routine jobs done by soldiers normally and “free” them from their tasks to be more productive in battle. These include services like operation food service, doing laundry and other chores soldiers used to do. This began with Dick Cheney who was Secretary of Defense at the time, awarding a study to KBR to determine the cost benefits of using contractors. KBR came back in favor of contractors and the rest is history. The video mentions 10 years and 7-800 contracts and billions of dollars in revenue.
These contracts are also under the wonders of “cost-plus” which allows for the wide abuse of American tax dollars. There is a pretty tight insider network set up when you combine that with no bid contracts and in at least one case, Halliburton recommending themselves for a job as the result of a study.
Here is a definition of “cost-plus” from Investopedia.
An agreement to pay a company for a job based on the amount of money used to buy the materials required to complete that job plus an added payment. A cost-plus contract fully reimburses a contractor for the cost of materials and then adds additional money to arrive at the total cost of the job. Cost-plus contracts are commonly used in research and development activities, where it is difficult to determine in advance how much a job should cost. For example, the U.S. government has agreed to cost-plus contracts with military defense companies that are developing new technologies for national defense.
Explained simply, the price can go up after the fact, based on cost overruns, at just the word (and fraud) of the company. It’s a good method for criminals to skim extra money from the public coffers. There was even a documentary put together about the millions of dollars likely made in the Iraq war by contractors.
Iraq for Sale
Videos of the criminal overcharging done by Halliburton and KBR
Fahrenheit 9/11 breaks down the Halliburton fraud
KBR and Halliburton have been accused of unsafe practices in the warzone
Halliburton supplied contaminated water in some instances to US bases
KBR knowingly exposed US troops to a deadly toxin?
KBR accused of electrocuting troops because of negligence
Specific coverage of Halliburton cheating US taxpayers
As a final piece of evidence for the massive enrichment Dick Cheney received, consider this chart which was brought by Sen. Frank Lautenberg. In one year, the value of his stock options surged by 3,281% in 1 year’s time. Notice it parallels the increasing intensity of the war in Iraq.
An analysis released by a Democratic senator found that Vice President Dick Cheney’s Halliburton stock options have risen 3,281 percent in the last year, RAW STORY can reveal.
Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) asserts that Cheney’s options — worth $241,498 a year ago — are now valued at more than $8 million. The former CEO of the oil and gas services juggernaut, Cheney has pledged to give proceeds to charity.
The above graph released by Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) charts the value of the Vice President’s holdings in Halliburton in the past year.
�Halliburton has already raked in more than $20 billion from the Bush-Cheney Administration for work in Iraq, and they were awarded some of the first Katrina contracts,” Lautenberg said in a statement. “It is unseemly for the Vice President to continue to benefit from this company at the same time his Administration funnels billions of dollars to it. The Vice President should sever his financial ties to Halliburton once and for all.�
Cheney continues to hold 433,333 Halliburton stock options. The company has been criticized by auditors for its handling of a no-bid contact in Iraq. Auditors found the firm marked up meal prices for troops and inflated gas prices in a deal with a Kuwaiti supplier. The company built the American prison at Guantanamo Bay.
The Vice President has sought to stem criticism by signing an agreement to donate the after-tax profits from these stock options to charities of his choice, and his lawyer has said he will not take any tax deduction for the donations.
However, the Congressional Research Service (CRS) concluded in Sept. 2003 that holding stock options while in elective office does constitute a �financial interest� regardless of whether the holder of the options will donate proceeds to charities. CRS also found that receiving deferred compensation is a financial interest.
Cheney told “Meet the Press” in 2003 that he didn’t have any financial ties to the firm.
�Since I left Halliburton to become George Bush’s vice president, I’ve severed all my ties with the company, gotten rid of all my financial interest,” the Vice President said. “I have no financial interest in Halliburton of any kind and haven’t had, now, for over three years.�
Cheney continues to received a deferred salary from the company. According to financial disclosure forms, he was paid $205,298 in 2001; $262,392 in 2002; $278,437 in 2003; and $294,852 in 2004.
The Bush family connections run even deeper since the business end goes back at least to George Bush’s grandfather, Prescott Bush. During World War II, Prescott Bush saw fit to do massive business with the Nazi German regime on goods that enabled their war effort. His company’s assets were even frozen and seized under the Trading With The Enemy Act in 1942.
The Bush family’s most guarded relationship appears to be the wide business dealings they have with Saudi Arabian firms, especially in oil.
A hint at how far George Bush went to stifle these connections during the 9/11 investigations comes in this 2009 CBS article. It lays out how Bush declined to release a congressional report on connections between Saudi officials and the hijackers.
President Bush refused on Tuesday to release a congressional report alleging possible links between Saudi Arabian officials and the Sept. 11 hijackers. The White House sought to question a Saudi citizen who befriended two of the hijackers.
Bush said he could not comply with a request by the Saudi foreign minister for a chance to clear the Arab kingdom’s name because publication of the report could hurt U.S. intelligence operations.
The foreign minister, Saud al-Faisal, said he was disappointed but understood.
The information is widely believed to center on Saudi Arabia, birthplace of Osama bin Laden and 15 of the 19 hijackers. Saudi Arabia has vehemently denied supporting the hijackers.
Sources tell CBS the redacted section lays out a money trail between Saudi Arabia and supporters of al Qaeda, reports CBS White House Chief Correspondent John Roberts.
The video version of how Bush stifled the investigation
This article is so you appreciate the fact that wars have been illegally started over one of the most heinous crimes in history, which was also perpetrated by friends of Military-Industrial complex.
Here is Prince Bandar of Saudi Arabia (recently reported dead) sitting with the US brass just days after 9/11 as it was alleged 15 of 19 hijackers were Saudis. They are smoking cigars together instead of discussing the attacks. Prince Bandar was such a good friend, the media dubbed him “Bandar Bush” in response.
When you look at the totality, the picture starts to come in to focus. It’s about the money on top of the control…
The article below was written by Kevin Ryan, who earned his 9/11 stripes by getting fired from Underwriter’s Laboratory after expressing his 9/11 views. This article provides excellent insight into the history of these relationships and how the wars benefit those deals.
December 12, 2009
Careful investigation leads one to notice that a number of intriguing groups of people and organizations converged on the events of September 11th, 2001. An example is the group of men who were members of Cornell University’s Quill & Dagger society. This included Paul Wolfowitz, National Security Advisors Sandy Berger and Stephen Hadley, Marsh & McLennan executive Stephen Friedman, and the founder of Kroll Associates, Jules Kroll. Another interconnected group of organizations is linked to these Cornell comrades, and is even more interesting in terms of its members being integral to the events of 9/11, and having benefited from those events.
After the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center (WTC), a company called Stratesec (or Securacom) was responsible for the overall integration of the new security system designed by Kroll Asoociates. Stratesec had a small board of directors that included retired Air Force General James Abrahamson, Marvin Bush (the brother of George W. Bush) and Wirt Walker III, a cousin of the Bush brothers. Other directors included Charles Archer, former Assistant Director in charge of the FBI’s Criminal Justice Information Services Division, and Yousef Saud Al Sabah, a member of the Kuwaiti royal family.
Yousef Saud Al Sabah was also chairman of the Kuwait-American Corporation (KuwAm), which between 1993 and 1999 held a controlling share of Stratesec. The other owners of Stratesec were Walker and an entity controlled by Walker and Al Sabah, called Special Situation Investment Holdings (SSIH). SSIH was said to form a group with KuwAm, and the group owned several other companies, including Commander Aircraft and Aviation General. In any case, the Kuwaiti royal family can be said to have benefited from 9/11 due to “The War on Terror” that removed Saddam Hussein from power. Of course, that was the second consecutive US war that Kuwait benefited from, the first being the 1991 Gulf War led by President George H.W. Bush.
Stratesec director James Abrahamson was President of Hughes Aircraft from 1989 to 1992, when Prescott Bush Jr. was helping Hughes lobby Bush’s brother, the US President, to lift sanctions on the Chinese government. Abrahamson became a director of Stratesec in December 1997. He also co-founded a company called Crescent Investment Management (Crescent) with the Pakistani-American, Mansoor Ijaz. Crescent’s board of advisors included James Woolsey, the CIA Director for President Clinton who became a PNAC signatory and Booz Allen Hamilton executive.
Mansoor Ijaz is the CEO of Crescent, and is a rare individual in that he claimed to have the ability to persuade several governments to extradite Osama bin Laden. After meetings with Clinton and his National Security Advisor Sandy Berger (who first introduced Woolsey to Clinton), Ijaz said that he could not convince them to work toward the extradition. Additionally, Ijaz introduced the journalist Daniel Pearl, by way of a personal letter, to those in Pakistan who are believed to have been involved in his death. Ijaz went on to become a Fox News correspondent, and he was a strong promoter of false claims leading up to the Iraq War, including WMDs and ties between Saddam Hussein and Al Qaeda.
Stratesec had contracts to provide security services for United Airlines, and Dulles Airport, where American Airlines Flight 77 took off on 9/11. Another client was Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL), where scientists were working on the development of nanothermite, a type of explosive material that has since been discovered in the WTC dust.[8,9]
The Carlyle Group
In 1998, Barry McDaniel came to Stratesec to become its Chief Operating Officer. McDaniel was therefore in charge of the security operation at the WTC in terms of what he called a “completion contract,” to provide services “up to the day the buildings fell down.” McDaniel had previously worked for the United States Army Materiel Command (AMC), located at Fort Belvoir, Virgina. But McDaniel came to Stratesec directly from BDM International, where he had been Vice President for nine years. BDM was a major subsidiary of The Carlyle Group for most of that time. When Barry McDaniel started at BDM, the company began getting a large amount of government business “in an area the Navy called Black Projects,” or budgets that were kept secret.
BDM has had an interesting history. In 1990 it was a subsidiary of Loral Corporation, a company owned by Bernard Schwartz that was related to WTC security company Ensec, and Ensec director Terry McAuliffe. Loral sold BDM to The Carlyle Group in 1992, at which time Frank Carlucci became chairman of BDM. Carlucci was a covert operative in his early career, and got his start in national politics through his old college roommate, Donald Rumsfeld, becoming Rumsfeld’s assistant at the Office of Economic Opportunity in 1969. Carlucci went on to be named Deputy Director of the CIA and Ronald Reagan’s Secretary of Defense.
During his first few years at Carlyle, Carlucci asked his friend Norman Augustine, later CEO of Lockheed Martin, if Carlyle could be included in a deal to buy the defense contractor LTV Corp. That deal did not happen, but LTV was among the companies whose stocks were flagged for insider trading related to 9/11.[14,15] The FBI also briefly considered investigating Stratesec for insider trading related to 9/11, due to an SEC referral of suspicious accounts. But since the people involved were considered to not have any “ties to terrorism or other negative information,” an investigation into Stratesec was not pursued. Putnam Investments, a subsidiary of WTC impact zone tenant Marsh & McLennan, was one of Stratesec’s investors.
During the time that Stratesec executive McDaniel worked for them, the Caryle Group began to add some very powerful people to their leadership group. One such figure was James Baker, who went to Princeton with Rumsfeld and Carlucci, and who was White House Chief of Staff, and Secretary of the Treasury, for Reagan. Baker was also George H.W. Bush’s campaign manager and Secretary of State, and Bush’s White House Chief of Staff again in his last government position. Baker became a partner at Carlyle just two weeks after the February 1993 bombing of the WTC.
Earlier in his career, Baker had worked in President Ford’s department of Commerce, along with WTC impact zone tenant Joseph Kasputys. And Baker was a longtime, close friend of Raymond Hill, an elite Texan who owned the mafia and CIA-connected Mainland Savings. American taxpayers shelled out approximately $500 million when Mainland failed in 1986. Investigators have since discovered that Mainland, like a number of other savings and loans that failed in the late 1980s, was a vehicle for CIA and mafia activities.
Baker is also remembered as the one person most responsible for changing the outcome of the 2000 presidential election, in favor of George W. Bush. As Congressman John Conyers wrote: “Mr. Baker will be forever remembered for his ultimately successful efforts to shut down the counting of votes in the 2000 Florida election.”
On September 11, 2001, Baker was at the Ritz-Carlton in Washington DC, for the annual investor conference of the Carlyle Group. Also present with Baker was Carlucci, “representatives of the bin Laden family,” and George H. W. Bush. Carlyle had been doing business with the bin Laden family since the early 1990s.
Baker’s grandfather started the law firm Baker Botts, which had offices in Saudi Arabia and which, after 9/11, represented the Saudi Arabian government in a lawsuit filed by families of those killed and injured in the attacks. The Saudi connection is interesting considering that Carlyle owned, through BDM International, the Vinnell Corporation, a mercenary operation that had extensive contracts in the Middle East since 1975, training the Saudi Arabian National Guard and also training Turkish security forces.
Vinnell was considered “by some experts to be a CIA front.” Of course Frank Carlucci was Deputy Director of the CIA, and George H.W. Bush, who was Baker’s boss for many years, was in the CIA for a majority of his career. Perhaps as a result, in 1995 Vinnell was reported to be one of the first targets of al Qaeda, in Saudi Arabia.
BDM, Vinnell’s parent company, was sold to TRW in 1997. Directors at BDM at the time included Carlyle Group executives and a former assistant to Henry Kissinger, Philip Odeen, who went on to become the CEO of TRW. Directors at TRW at the same time included Robert M. Gates, former Director of Central Intelligence and current Secretary of Defense. Arden Bement, who was appointed by George W. Bush to lead the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) one month after the 9/11 attacks, had left his position as TRW Vice President in 1992, moving to Purdue University in the interim.
In 1998, at the time that Barry McDaniel moved to Stratesec, TRW merged with Lockheed Martin, the company that sub-contracted the WTC security job to Ensec. Stratesec and Ensec, along with E.J. Electric and Electronic Systems Associates, worked to build the security system that was in place at the WTC when the buildings were destroyed. All four of these companies had done significant work in Saudi Arabia before working at the WTC.
Marvin Bush was a director of Stratesec from 1993 to 2000. It was during that time that Kroll and Stratesec planned and executed the extensive rebuilding of the security systems at the WTC complex. As his stint with Stratesec ended, Marvin Bush became a principal in the company HCC Insurance, one of the insurance carriers for the World Trade Center.
Marvin Bush was the cofounder of Winston Partners in 1993, a company that benefited greatly from the War on Terror. In 2000, Winston Partners invested heavily in a defense contractor called AMSEC that was 55% owned by Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC). It has been noted that SAIC was not only a major contributor to the NIST WTC report, it was also a company that had expertise in nanothermites, explosive materials which were found in the WTC dust as mentioned earlier.
Founded by a scientist from Los Alamos National Laboratory, SAIC had a long history at the WTC, having evaluated the basement levels of the buildings as a potential terrorist target in 1986. Interestingly, the company was hired to investigate the 1993 bombing of the WTC, an event that was “remarkably like the one which” they had foreseen in 1986. In fact, SAIC later boasted that — “After the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, our blast analyses produced tangible results that helped identify those responsible.”
After 9/11, SAIC supplied the largest contingent of non-governmental investigators to the WTC investigation conducted NIST. At the same time, “SAIC personnel were instrumental in pressing the case that weapons of mass destruction existed in Iraq under Saddam Hussein, and that war was the only way to get rid of them.”
SAIC was also a pioneer in the intelligence contracting business, as a founding member of the Security Affairs Support Association in 1979, along with companies like TRW, Booz Allen Hamilton, Lockheed and Hughes Aircraft. A special taskforce of the Defense Science Board, which was led in 1993 by BDM’s Philip Odeen, recommended a vast increase in the outsourcing of intelligence, which all these companies ended up benefiting from greatly.
Today a majority of government intelligence work is outsourced, and SAIC is known first and foremost as an intelligence contractor. SAIC sells expertise about weapons, about homeland security, about surveillance, about computer systems, about “information dominance” and “information warfare,” and has been awarded more individual government contracts than any other private company in America. In fact, the company was paid huge sums to rebuild the NSA and FBI systems that supposedly failed before 9/11.
SAIC is integral to the operations of all the major intelligence collection agencies, particularly the National Security Agency (NSA), the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) and the CIA. In fact, the CIA relies on SAIC to spy in its own workforce. But SAIC has also played an integral role in the “War on Terror”, and was even responsible for capturing Khalid Sheikh Mohammed. It was SAIC staff and technology that “tease[ed] out crucial clues about Mohammed’s activities from intercepted text messages that he sent to his al Qaeda operatives using as many as 20 different cell phones.”
In an interesting coincidence, while the Carlyle/BDM subsidiary Vinnell Corp was training the Saudi Arabian National Guard, SAIC was training the Saudi Navy and bringing Saudi military personnel to company headquarters in San Diego for further study. Simultaneously, Booz Allen Hamilton was managing the Saudi Marine Corps and running the Saudi Armed Forces Staff College. Vinnell now works with SAIC to train the Iraqi military.
SAIC employees or board members have included Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, former Deputy Director of CIA Bobby Ray Inman, former NYC OEM director Jerome Hauer, anthrax attack suspect Stephen Hatfill, former CIA Director John Deutch, and Lawrence B. Prior, a military intelligence officer and former TRW executive. Also formerly with SAIC, during the time of the planning and implementation of the 9/11 attacks, was Dick Cheney’s undersecretary of defense, Duane Andrews.
Duane Andrews considered Dick Cheney to be his personal, lifelong hero. While he worked for Cheney, Andrews supervised Stephen Cambone, who went on to become Donald Rumsfeld’s “special assistant.” When Andrews left the Pentagon in 1993, he became chief operating officer for SAIC, where he supervised “much of the company’s work on secret projects with defense and national security agencies.” Andrews and Cambone both later hired on to the British intelligence firm Qinetiq, along with George Tenet. Coincidentally, The Carlyle Group was a major shareholder in Qinetiq as of February 2003.
Halliburton and BCCI
When we examine who had the greatest motive for the attacks of 9/11, we need to look at who most benefited from those events. Certainly SAIC and other companies like Maurice Greenberg’s American International Group (AIG) are among those who profited the most after 9/11. But The Carlyle Group and oil companies like Halliburton led the field in terms of profiting from 9/11.
Dick Cheney was hired as CEO of Halliburton in 1995, despite having no practical business leadership experience. He quickly went on to add new directors that shared his political convictions, including Lawrence Eagleburger, the former Secretary of State under the first President George Bush. Eagleburger also served as a director of Kissinger Associates, and on the board of Dresser Industries, where George H.W. Bush got his start. Others Cheney added to his team included Ray Hunt, of Dallas-based Hunt Oil, a longtime supporter of the Bush clan.
Cheney named Charles DiBona as one of his first appointees to the board of Halliburton. DiBona had been the Deputy Director of the White House Policy Office and Special Assistant to President Nixon in the early 1970s. DiBona was also an associate of WTC south tower impact zone tenant Joseph Kasputys, at the Logistics Management Institute, and DiBona and Kasputys had previously worked together during the Arab Oil Embargo as representatives of the emerging US Department of Energy (DOE). In fact, DiBona was one of the first US “Energy Czars.”
Like DiBona, Joseph Kasputys was in the US Navy for 20 years, and both of them retired as Commanders. They then both worked for the predecessor agencies of the DOE, and Kasputys worked for the Department of Defense as well. In 1975, Kasputys was appointed by President Ford to be Assistant Secretary of Commerce. As stated in the review of tenants in the towers, Kasptuys went on to run a large corporation called Primark that had offices in both towers on 9/11. One of the subsidiaries of Primark, The Analytical Sciences Corporation (TASC), worked with “so-called ‘black’ or top secret programs.” TASC also worked closely with the National Institute of Standards and Technology.
After his government service, DiBona went on to lead the American Petroleum Institute, the petroleum industry’s national trade association, in a position he held for nineteen years. During that time, DiBona was also a director of First American Bancshares, the American bank secretly owned by the Bank of Credit and Commerce International (BCCI).
BCCI is significant relative to 9/11 because it was involved in funding terrorists in the late 1980s and was linked to the Pakistani intelligence network, from which several alleged 9/11 conspirators came, including Khalid Sheik Mohammed. In fact, Time magazine reported, relative to BCCI, that — “You can’t draw a line separating the bank’s black operatives and Pakistan’s intelligence services.”
BCCI was also clearly connected to the mafia. Munther Bilbeisi, a notorious BCCI representative who was finally indicted for tax fraud in 1991, was associated with several mafia families in New Jersey, including the DeCavalcante and Luchese crime families.
More importantly, there were indications that the CIA was involved in the founding of BCCI. There were also connections between George H. W. Bush, who was CIA director during BCCI’s heyday, and George W. Bush, through Harken Energy. But other US government representatives helped BCCI too, simply by not doing anything or allowing BCCI to make acquisitions in the US when they should have closed the operation down. For example, at the time that BCCI was first publicly suspected of wrongdoing, in 1988, both the US Department of Justice and the Federal Reserve Bank (Fed) were hesitant to investigate or prosecute, despite the fact that there were signs that both of these organizations already knew of BCCI’s fraud. When the Fed finally did take its first disciplinary action, it appeared that BCCI had a friend at the top, in that one member abstained from a critical vote. That member was the chairman, Alan Greenspan. Greenspan later explained that he had socialized with BCCI attorney and First American Bancshares President, Robert Altman.
Kissinger and his associates
Henry Kissinger and his associates were also connected to BCCI in several ways, although he refused to share documents with the related Senate investigation. For example, Sergio Correa da Costa, who served as Brazil’s Ambassador to the US in the mid-1980s (note that Ensec was a Brazilian company), worked for Kissinger’s consulting company, Kissinger Associates, and was also a nominee shareholder for BCCI. And as early as 1971, Kissinger was linked to BCCI through the Pakistanis that arranged for his first visit to China. At the time, Pakistrani agents who later became BCCI representatives were involved in fooling journalists into thinking Kissinger was in Pakistan instead of China. Kissinger returned to China many times and on occasion took very close friends and business associates along with him, most notably Maurice Greenberg of AIG, who traveled extensively with Kissinger.
From 1985 to 1990, a client of Kissinger Associates, Banca Nazionale del Lavoro (BNL) provided $4 billion in unreported loans to Saddam Hussein and his government in Iraq. Henry Kissinger was on the International Advisory Board of BNL during that same time period. Kissinger and his leading assistants Brent Scowcroft and Lawrence Eagleburger were investigated in this matter by the House Banking Committee just as the first Gulf War was ending.
But the numerous connections between assistants and associates of Kissinger, and the most significant events of 9/11, are astounding. To begin with, Kissinger, who is considered by some to be an international terrorist due to his bombing of Cambodia, his role in the 1973 coup in Chile, and other atrocities, was the Bush Administration’s first choice to lead the 9/11 Commission. Although he later resigned from the Commission to avoid exposing his client list, Kissinger’s closest friends and aides played significant roles with regard to 9/11.
- L. Paul Bremer, the managing director at Kissinger Associates from 1989 to 2000, left there to take a job with WTC impact zone tenant Marsh & McLennan, and then played a leading role in establishing the official myth of 9/11.
- Peter Rodman, PNAC member and Assistant Secretary of Defense on 9/11, hosted meetings with Pakistani ISI General Ahmed the week before 9/11, and had previously been a Special Assistant to Kissinger for eight years.
- Joseph Kasputys, south tower impact zone tenant, worked with Kissinger in the Ford Administration (along with Cheney, Greenspan, DiBona, and Rumsfeld).
- Kissinger is also closely associated with several 9/11 Commissioners, including his long-time National Security Council assistant John Lehman, and his fellow Hollinger board member James R. Thompson.
- And Phillip Odeen of BDM, who was Barry McDaniel’s boss until McDaniel left to lead WTC security company Stratesec, was a Kissinger assistant for several years.
There was also Renato Ruggiero of Kissinger Associates. Mr. Ruggerio was present on 9/11 in the sense that he was on the International Advisory Board for Salomon Smith Barney (SSB), the company that occupied all but ten of the 47 floors in WTC building 7. SSB even shared the all-important 23rd floor with the New York City OEM. More striking is the fact that Donald Rumsfeld was the chairman of that SSB board, and Dick Cheney was a board member as well. Rumsfeld served as chairman of the SSB International Advisory Board since its inception in 1999, but had to resign in 2001 when he was confirmed as George W. Bush’s Secretary of Defense, and Cheney resigned at the same time when he became Vice President.
Another interesting coincidence is that Global Crossing was brought public in 1998 by SSB. Global Crossing was the company that Ensec director McAuliffe made a fortune on, when he purchased $100,000 in stock before the company went public and cashed out several years later for $18 million. Richard Perle was a lobbyist for Global Crossing.
On 9/11/01, Salomon Smith Barney’s parent company was Citigroup. Citicorp was the nation’s largest bank in 1990, but dropped half of its value from the summer to the winter of that year due to the S&L scandal. The company was saved by Prince Alwaleed of Saudi Arabia, who pumped an initial $590 MM into the company in a deal brokered by The Carlyle Group. It is believed that the money, and more, came from BCCI as it was dissolving.
Therefore, when Salomon Smith Barney was taken over by Citigroup in 1998, it was taken over in part by Saudi owners who were apparently redistributing the funding and networks of BCCI. Rumsfeld and Cheney entered the picture less than a year later, in May 1999. Jules Kroll, the founder of the WTC security design firm, and Rudy Giuliani, who was a former Department of Justice official, were responsible for investigating organized crime and BCCI, and were well aware of the extent of those networks ten years prior to that. Others like them, who brought the late indictments against BCCI, were leaders of the US Department of Justice.
Stratesec was at the WTC, and therefore, through Barry McDaniel and the Bush family, the influence of The Carlyle Group was present as well. In a sense, Rumsfeld and Cheney were also present at the WTC, because both of them were on the advisory board of Salomon Smith Barney. And SAIC was at the WTC on 9/11 too, as it was one of the first companies to show up at Ground Zero on that day. That fact will be discussed in the third installment of the essay series entitled Demolition Access to the WTC.
As for Kissinger, within hours of the events of 9/11 he was writing an opinion piece for the Washington Post. In it, he claimed to have thorough knowledge of what would be required to pull off such a coordinated set of attacks. Kissinger went on to inform the American public of what must happen next: “the destruction of the system that is responsible.” No one can argue with that sentiment. But to this day, no one can accurately describe the terrorist system that was responsible for the 9/11 attacks, let alone destroy it.
What we can say today, with certainty, is that if we are to believe that al Qaeda orchestrated the events of 9/11 then we do not know much about al Qaeda. Alternatively, there was a far more powerful and highly connected system of intelligence and financial networks, represented by organizations like Carlyle, Kissinger, SAIC and Halliburton, that converged upon the events of 9/11. That other system continues to profit from the 9/11 attacks, and uses the fear and rage generated by al Qaeda-attributed terrorism to its own advantage. Understanding and destroying terrorism might simply be a matter of understanding and destroying the organizations that continue to profit from 9/11.
War profiteering is bipartisan.
USA Today March 2013
The business of war is profitable. In 2011, the 100 largest contractors sold $410 billion in arms and military services. Just 10 of those companies sold over $208 billion. Based on a list of the top 100 arms-producing and military services companies in 2011 compiled by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), 24/7 Wall St. reviewed the 10 companies with the most military sales worldwide.
These companies have benefited tremendously from the growth in military spending in the U.S., which by far has the largest military budget in the world. In 2000, the U.S. defense budget was approximately $312 billion. By 2011, the figure had grown to $712 billion. Arm sales grew alongside general defense spending growth. SIPRI noted that between 2002 and 2011, arms sales among the top 100 companies grew by 51%.
However, the trend has recently reversed. In 2011, the top 100 arms dealers sold 5% less compared to 2010. Susan Jackson, a SIPRI defense expert, said in an email to 24/7 Wall St. that austerity measures in Western Europe and the U.S. have delayed or slowed the procurement of different weapons systems. Austerity concerns have exacerbated matters. Federal budget cuts that took effect in March mean military spending could contract by more than $500 billion over the coming decade unless policymakers negotiate a pullback on the mandated cuts.
In addition, the U.S.’ involvement in conflicts abroad continue to wind down. The last American convoy in Iraq left the country in December 2011. Troop withdrawals from Afghanistan also began in 2011. Finally, SIPRI pointed out sanctions on arms transfers to Libya have contributed to declining arms sales.
Many defense contractors are looking overseas to make up for slowing sales in the U.S. and Europe. Arms producers are especially keen on Latin America, the Middle East and parts of Asia, Jackson said. For instance, BAE is securing contracts with Saudi Arabia. Meanwhile, the chief financial officer of Northrop Grumman has recently indicated his company may sell its Global Hawk airplane to South Korea or Japan.
Based on the SIPRI report, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed the 10 biggest weapons companies. Arms were defined as sales to military customers, either for procurement or for export, but do not include sales of general purpose items, such as oil or computer equipment. We looked at sales figures for two years through 2011, among other metrics. Here are the 10 companies that profit the most from war:
10. United Technologies (UTX) — aircraft, electronics, engines
Arm sales: $11.6 billion, total sales: $58.2 billion
Gross profit: $5.3 billion, total workforce: 199,900
United Technologies makes a wide range of arms — notably military helicopters, including the Black Hawk helicopter for the U.S. Army and the Seahawk helicopter for the U.S. Navy. The company was the biggest employer in the top 10 though arms sales accounted for just 20% of revenue. UTX also produces elevators, escalators, air-conditioners and refrigerators. International sales comprised 60% of the company’s revenue in 2012.
9. L-3 Communications (LLL) — electronics
Arm sales: $12.5 billion, total sales: $15.2 billion
Gross profit: $956 million, total workforce: 61,000
Some 83% of L-3 Communications sales in 2011 came from arms sales, but this was down from what it sold the prior year. The company has four business segments: electronic systems; aircraft modernization and maintenance; national security solutions; and command, control, communications, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance. Among many products manufactured, the company has become a major provider of unmanned aircraft systems.
8. Finmeccanica — aircraft, artillery, engines, electronics, vehicles and missiles
Arms sales, $14.6 billion, total sales: $24.1 billion
Gross profit: $ -3.2 billion, total workforce: 70,470
Italian company Finmeccanica makes a wide range of arms, including helicopters and security electronics. Nearly 60% of the company’s sales in 2011 were in arms. Finmeccanica lost $3.2 billion in 2011. The Italian company is currently fending off allegation that it paid bribes to win an approximately $750 million contract to provide 12 military helicopters to the Indian government in 2010. The then-head of the company, Giuseppe Orsi, was arrested in February but has denied wrongdoing. Other executives, including the head of the company’s helicopter unit, have been replaced, and the company has delayed the release of recent financial results.
7. EADS — aircraft, electronics, missiles and space
Arm sales: $16.4 billion, total sales: $68.3 billion
Gross profit: $1.4 billion, total workforce: 133,120
The European Aeronautic Defense and Space Company (EADS), based in the Netherlands, had sales in 2011 roughly in line with the prior year. Arms sales comprised just 24% of the company’s revenue. EADS and BAE Systems unsuccessfully attempted to merge for $45 billion in 2012, which would have created the world’s largest aerospace company. The deal collapsed in October after German Chancellor Angela Merkel expressed concerns about the merger.
6. Northrop Grumman (NOC) — aircraft, electronics, missiles, ships, space
Arm sales: $21.4 billion, total sales: $26.4 billion
Gross profit: $2.1 billion, total workforce: 72,500
Northrop Grumman’s 2011 arms sales comprised about 81% of total sales even after a sharp decline in arms sales year over year. The company attributed the decline to reduced government spending on defense projects. Nevertheless, the company was more profitable than in the prior year.
5. Raytheon (RTN) — electronics, missiles
Arm sales: $22.5 billion, total sales: $24.9 billion
Gross profit: $1.9 billion, total workforce: 71,000
Raytheon, based in Waltham, Mass., is one of the largest defense contractors in the U.S. The company makes the Tomahawk Cruise Missile, among others. Arms sales comprised about 90% of the company’s sales in 2011 though they as a total they were lower than in the prior year. The slide hasn’t let up. Total sales in 2012 fell 1.5%, and Raytheon is expecting sales to fall 3% in 2013, a projection which doesn’t take into account the effects of mandated budget cuts. The company can rely on overseas customers to somewhat offset weak sales at home. As of January, approximately 40% of the company’s backlog was booked overseas. The company expects approximately a 5% increase in international sales in 2013.
4. General Dynamics (GD) — artillery, electronics, vehicles, small arms, ships
Arm sales: $23.8 billion, total sales: $32.7 billion
Gross profit: $2.5 billion, total workforce: 95,100
With 18,000 transactions in 2011, General Dynamics was the third-largest contractor to the U.S. government. Of those contracts, approximately $12.9 billion worth went to the Navy, while an additional $4.6 billion went to the Army. The company’s arms sales in 2011 comprised 73% of total sales. Arms sales in 2011 were slightly below 2010 levels. The company makes a host of products, including electric boats, tracked and wheeled military vehicles, and battle tanks. The company announced layoffs in early March, blaming mandated federal budget cuts.
3. BAE Systems — aircraft, artillery, electronics, vehicles, missiles, ships
Arm sales: $29.2 billion, total sales: $30.7 billion
Gross profit: $2.3 billion, total workforce: 93,500
BAE Systems was the largest non-U.S. company based on arms sales. Arms sales represented 95% of the company’s total sales in 2011 even though they were lower as a total of overall sales compared to the prior year. The products BAE sells include the L-ROD Bar Armor System that shields defense vehicles and the Hawk Advanced Jet Trainer that provides sophisticated simulation training for military pilots. In 2013, the company said its growth would likely come from outside the U.S. and Great Britain — its home market. BAE noted that its outlook for those two countries was “constrained,” likely due to the diminished presence in international conflicts and government budget cuts.
2. Boeing (BA) — aircraft, electronics, missiles, space
Arm sales: $31.8 billion, total sales: $68.7 billion
Gross profit: $4 billion, total workforce: 171,700
Boeing was the second-largest U.S. government contractor in 2011, with about $21.5 billion worth of goods contracted. The Chicago-based company makes a wide range of arms, including strategic missile systems, laser and electro-optical systems and global positioning systems. Despite all these technologies, just 46% of the company’s total sales of $68.7 billion in 2011 came from arms. Boeing is the largest commercial airplane manufacturer in the world, making planes such as the 747, 757 and recently, the 787 Dreamliner. The company is also known for its space technology — Boeing had $1 billion worth of contracts with NASA in 2011.
1. Lockheed Martin (LMT) — aircraft, electronics, missiles, space
Arm sales:$36.3 billion, total sales: $46.5 billion
Gross profit: $2.7 billion, total workforce, 123,000
Lockheed Martin notched $36.3 billion in sales in 2011, slightly higher than the $35.7 billion the company sold in 2010. The arms sales comprised 78% of the company’s total 2011 sales. Lockheed makes a wide range of products, including aircraft, missiles, unmanned systems and radar systems. The company and its employees have been concerned about the effects of the “fiscal cliff” and sequestration, the latter of which includes significant cuts to the U.S. Department of Defense. In the fall of 2012, the company planned on issuing layoff notices to all employees before backing down at the White House’s request.
24/7 Wall St.com is a financial news and analysis web site.