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Commentary :: International
BTL:Pentagon Says White-House Connected Halliburton Company Overcharged...
19 Dec 2003
Modified: 06:19:06 AM
...U.S. Government $61 Million. Interview with Rania Masri, of the Institute for Southern Studies, conducted by Between the Lines' Scott Harris
Pentagon Says White-House Connected Halliburton Company Overcharged U.S. Government $61 Million

Interview with Rania Masri, of the Institute for Southern Studies, conducted by Scott Harris

Not long after the White House announced a new policy to exclude nations that opposed the U.S. invasion of Iraq from being eligible to receive lucrative contracts for reconstruction projects in that war ravaged land, reports surfaced that a favored administration company had overcharged U.S. taxpayers millions of dollars.

A Pentagon audit has found that a subsidiary of the Halliburton Company, once headed by Vice President Dick Cheney, had overcharged the government an estimated $61 million for gasoline delivered to Iraq under a controversial no-bid contract.

Although the Pentagon maintains that Halliburton didn't profit from the overcharge directly, but paid too much to a Kuwaiti subcontractor, questions have surfaced about the company's inflated cost estimates submitted for other services to the military. While President Bush says he expects Halliburton to repay any money found to have been overcharged, administration critics such as Democratic congressman Henry Waxman of California have called for a top-to-bottom review of all contracts awarded to companies doing business with the Pentagon in Iraq.

Media attention focused on Halliburton's alleged impropriety was driven off the front pages of newspapers after the surprise capture of Saddam Hussein, but the company's handling of U.S. contracts, potentially worth more than $15 billion, remain a concern for the Pentagon and many in Congress. Between The Lines' Scott Harris spoke with Rania Masri, director of the institute for Southern Studies, who examines the charges of war profiteering leveled against Halliburton, Bechtel and other companies with close ties to the Bush administration.

Contact the Institute for Southern Studies by calling (919) 419-8311 or visit their website at:

Related links:

"Patriots and Profits," by Paul Krugman, New York Times, Dec. 16, 2003

"Pentagon Alleges Iraq Price Gouging," San Francisco Chronicle, Dec. 12, 2003

"Allegations of War Profiteering Leveled Against Halliburton and Other Companies With Close Ties to White House," Interview with Charlie Cray, corporate reform campaigner at Citizen Works, Between The Lines, Week Ending May 23, 2003

"Halliburton Unit In Consortium Fingered For Alleged Corruption," The Houston Business Journal, Oct. 10, 2003

"Cheney's Ties to Halliburton," by Mike Allen, The Washington Post, Sept. 26, 2003

"Another Scandalous No-Bid Contract Makes Us Look Like Fools," by Pat Gerber,, May 26, 2003

"US says Halliburton Deal Includes Operating Iraq Oil Fields," Contract Much Larger Than Previously Known, by Agence France Presse, May 7, 2003

"Cheney, Halliburton and the Spoils of War," by Lee Drutman and Charlie Cray at, April 4, 2003

LISTEN to this week's half-hour program of Between The Lines by clicking on one of the links below:
"Between The Lines" is a half-hour syndicated radio news magazine that each week features a summary of under-reported news stories and interviews with activists and journalists who offer progressive perspectives on international, national and regional political, economic and social issues. Because "Between The Lines" is independent of all publications, media networks or political parties, we are able to bring a diversity of voices to the airwaves generally ignored or marginalized by the major media. For more information on this week's topics and to check out our text archive listing topics and guests presented in previous programs visit:
"Between the Lines," WPKN 89.5 FM's weekly radio news magazine can be heard Tuesdays at 5:30 p.m. ET; Wednesdays at 8 a.m. ET and Saturdays at 2 p.m. ET (Wednesday's show airs at 7:30 a.m. ET during fundraising months of April and October).
For an email subscription of "Between The Lines Weekly Summary" which features a RealAudio link to the week's program for Between The Lines, send an email to btlsummary-subscribe (at)
For an email subscription of "Between The Lines Q&A" which features a RealAudio link and weekly transcript to one of the interviews featured on Between The Lines, send an email to btlqa-subscribe (at)
betweenthelines (at)
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©2003 Between The Lines. All Rights Reserved.

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