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March 22, 2008

Killing Our Own Troops

by at 9:52 am.

This is how our executive branch supports our troops??

If you were watching Countdown tonight, you saw Keith Olbermann in his “Bushed” segment report that at least 12 service members have been electrocuted in Iraq due to faulty wiring at facilities maintained by Halliburton spinoff company KBR. As appalling as that is, the details are even worse.

The diarist quotes a Houston Chronicle article:

At least a dozen soldiers and Marines have been electrocuted in Iraq over the five years of the war, and investigators now are trying to learn what role improper grounding of electrical wires played in those deaths.

And Houston-based KBR — which builds bases and maintains housing for U.S. troops in Iraq — is at the center of the probe, with questions being raised about its responsibility to repair known wiring problems.

On the fifth anniversary of the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, California Democrat Henry Waxman, chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, sent a letter Wednesday to Defense Secretary Robert Gates seeking details about electrocutions of military and contract workers in Iraq and about KBR’s role in making electrical repairs.

KBR had been contracted to provide maintenance on the building in 2007, the memo said.

Maseth was killed, the memo said, when an electrical water pump shorted out after he had stepped into the shower and turned on the water.

An electrical current then passed through the water pipes to a metal shower hose in the shower.

This is just gut-wrenching. We have got to halt all contracts to this Halliburton subsidiary. Or any other Bush crony corporation which is war profiteering in Iraq or Afghanistan.

4 Responses to “Killing Our Own Troops”

  1. waittilnextyr Says:

    And to make matters worse:

    “The lawsuit alleges that KBR knew the electrical supply to the building’s water tank bypassed the main disconnect, two unprotected splices were linked to the supply line, and the water tanks were not grounded. In addition, it says, “KBR was aware that the water pump servicing the facility was manufactured by a Chinese company for sale to countries outside the United States because it failed to meet applicable U.S. safety standards.”"

  2. Officer John Says:

    The carnage is tragic. If you go to the front page of cnn right now there is a story about an accidental US military attack on pro-American Iraqi citizens. While this kind of mistake is common in war, the problem is that this sort of urban warfare benefits no one — not our military men and women nor the iraqi people, nor our own homeland security. Actually, I take that back. The war does benefit the members of the military industrial complex. But no one else.

  3. waittilnextyr Says:

    OJ, oops, I mean Officer John, a factor of 4 applies to those who benefit from the war.

    Oil companies: $27/barrel when George Bush took office, $108 now - a factor of 4

    Halliburton Stock: $9 a share in 2003, $36 after 5 years of war funding - a factor of 4

  4. waittilnextyr Says:

    It looks like George was a little heavy-handed trying to get support for his war, and only succeeded in making a few more enemies.

    “UNITED NATIONS - In the months leading up to the US-led invasion of Iraq, the Bush administration threatened trade reprisals against friendly countries who withheld their support, spied on its allies, and pushed for the recall of UN envoys that resisted US pressure to endorse the war, according to an upcoming book by a top Chilean diplomat.”

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