A few weeks ago, I asked Peter Lorre-style whether there was an end to the horrors of the US government’s contracting and procurement shenanigans on the war front. Since then, I’ve reported that the State Department has renewed a multi-million dollar contract with Blackwater Worldwide, despite numerous accusations of neglect, criminality — even homicide — on the part of its high-paid guards.
Now, Gretchen Peters at ABC News is reporting that the Pentagon just awarded an $80 million contract to a company owned by a man who is wanted by our justice department for a savings and loan scheme that cost the US taxpayers $1.7 billion. He has also been mentioned by French authorities in connection with a money transfer network that funnels cash to terrorist groups, including al Qaeda.
Ghaith Pharaon is a Saudi businessman who is being actively sought by the FBI in two cases. He owns Attock Refinery, Ltd., which already supplied $40 million worth of jet fuel to the US military in 2007, and has now scored another $80 million to provide more. According to ABC News, Pharaon was an investor in George W. Bush’s first business venture, Arbusto Energy.