Bechtel says it's lost enough money in Iraq. Too much is going for things other than rebuilding efforts.
Bechtel's first reconstruction contract, awarded shortly after Saddam Hussein's overthrow in April 2003, assured the company that it would have a safe environment for its workers.
But, by the end, dozens of Bechtel's employees and subcontractors had been
killed, some of them kidnapped, others marched out of their office and shot.
Forty-nine others were wounded.
"That's really an under-told story -- we've stopped the reconstruction,"
said Frederick Barton, co-director of the Post-Conflict Reconstruction Project
at the Center for Strategic & International Studies think tank. "There are
some things we're still finishing up, but we're wrapping up, and we're stepping
It's really a tragedy."
Now the Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction is leaving Iraq, too. Why? (from the NYT)
Investigations led by a Republican lawyer named Stuart W. Bowen Jr. in Iraq
have sent American occupation officials to jail on bribery and conspiracy
charges, exposed disastrously poor construction work by well-connected companies
like Halliburton and Parsons, and discovered that the military did not properly
track hundreds of thousands of weapons it shipped to Iraqi security forces.
And tucked away in a huge military authorization bill that President Bush
signed two weeks ago is what some of Mr. Bowen’s supporters believe is his
reward for repeatedly embarrassing the administration: a pink slip.
Dick Cheney says that the stakes are high in the election Tuesday. Show him you understand. Send a Republican home, too.