The Carlyle Group, primary home for half of the former Reagan and Bush administration defense, CIA chiefs and presidents 41 and 43 was nabbed in a play for pay scheme throwing $13 million in bribes to New York pension fund directors to elicit contracts. New York State Attorney General Andrew Cuomo said:
Carlyle had agreed to $20 million to “resolve its role” in the ongoing corruption investigation and agreed to a new code of conduct that prohibits the use of such middlemen.
Carlyle enlisted the aid of a “fixer”, Hank Morris, and “paid Morris through shell companies he controlled”.
Carlyle then received more than $730 million in New York state pension funds for five different projects, according to Cuomo.
Carlyle employees also made about $78,000 in campaign contributions to Comptroller Hevesi’s campaign in 2005 and 2006, according to Cuomo, some solicited by Morris.
Finally. Carlyle caught with it’s pants down mooning the public.
But the whole deal seems amateurish and penny ante compared to their propensity for buying up military contractors before and while declaring “war on terror”.
Carlyle chairman, Frank Carlucci, former defense department chief during the Reagan years and head of defense contractor, General Dynamics, was unhappy about the fortunes of his industry during the late 1990’s. Firms had been consolidating, business was slow. The wars waged by the Reagan-Bush administration were winding down, The Cold War barely a memory. Contracts, previously lucrative, were trickling in. Carlyle and the rest of the military-industrial complex despaired at the military’s “socialism” and wanted more of it handed over to the private sector.
In 1997 Carlyle Group bought United Defense Industries. The company’s prospectus describes its mission manufacturing:
Combat Vehicle Systems, Fire Support, Combat Support Vehicle Systems, Weapons Delivery Systems, Amphibious Assault Vehicles, Logistics and Training Support, Intelligent Munitions, and Marine Repair.
….United Defense was upgrading existing vehicles. The company was also busy developing the next generation Crusader Field Artillery System, designed to replace the M109A6 Paladin, and was hoping to land a $20 billion Crusader production contract in 2000. The company was also developing a Composite Armor Vehicle and a Grizzly minefield-breaching vehicle.
After the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on U.S. soil, President George Bush and his administration launched immense military initiatives in Afghanistan, Iraq, and other areas, and these initiatives greatly impacted the U.S. defense industry. In December of that year, United Defense went public on the New York Stock Exchange and was awarded many new contracts.
Carlyle snapped up Cercom, Inc.
In 2004, United Defense acquired Cercom Inc., which specialized in developing armor protection for soldiers as well as for defense vehicles.
From the New York Times:
Cercom, an advanced materials company based in Vista, Calif., began making enhanced plates for the Pentagon this summer and said it was working round the clock to fill its part of the military order.
Weren’t there complaints and desperate calls for help from soldiers and their families for more body and vehicle armor? Did president Bush send them into the field with inadequate armor from his own company? Just asking.
War is business. An eternal war is very good business.
In July 2002, United Defense acquired United States Marine Repair, the country’s largest non-nuclear ship repair, modernization, conversion, and overhaul company. United Defense’s work with the U.S. Army was bolstered as well when, in 2003, the company was awarded a $2 billion contract by Boeing Co. to develop five types of manned ground vehicles (MGVs) for the Army.
From Funding Universe, above:
As the country’s war efforts continued, United Defense’s first quarter revenues in 2004 increased 17 percent, with sales from the Defense System division generating the bulk of the first quarter growth in 2004. These were attributed, in particular, to Bradley Fighting Vehicle upgrades, spare parts, and ramped-up development programs including the Army’s Future Combat Systems and the Navy’s new destroyer program, DD(X).
What a lovely pair of warmongers: Bush with the Carlyle Group, United Defense, Cercom. Cheney running Halliburton and KBR. What a racket! We know the costs and cost over runs for no-bid Halliburton and KBR were enormous. Could we see the same pattern for United Defense and Cercom? Did I forget to mention the CIA and Defense Department officials that sit on the Carlyle board? And how about the Saudi royal family, close associates of Osama and the bin Ladins and countrymen of 13 of the 15 airline hijackers that plowed into the World Trade Center towers to start the Iraq(!!!!???) invasion? What a tangled web they weave.
In 2008 The Carlyle Group acquired Booz Allen, the global management and intelligence consulting firm, for $2.54 billion.
A recent deal between Booz Allen and the Carlyle Group has been deemed a national security threat by the Service Employees Union International. The government of Abu-Dhabi holds high stakes in the Carlyle group, and this new union of Booz Allen with the Carlyle Group risks allowing the foreign government access to national security information. Booz Allen is headquartered in Mclean, Virginia and is one of the oldest management consulting firms in the world. The company is one of the largest contractors to the Central Intelligence Agency and National Security Agency. The ties between Booz Allen and intelligence agencies are very close. Former intelligence agency officers have held the position of vice president for Booz Allen and a retired CIA deputy director referred to Booz Allen as “the shadow intelligence community.”
From Democracy Now!:
Mike McConnell, Booz Allen and the Privatization of Intelligence
Mike McConnell, the man President Bush tapped to replace John Negroponte as National Intelligence Director, has been a leading figure in outsourcing U.S. intelligence operations to private industry. McConnell is a former director of the National Security Agency and the current director of defense programs at Booz Allen. We take a look at McConnell and the privatization of intelligence with journalist Tim Shorrock.
McConnell is a former director of the National Security Agency and the current director of defense programs at Booz Allen—one of the nation’s biggest defense and intelligence contractors. Under his watch, Booz Allen has been deeply involved in some of the most controversial counterterrorism programs run by the Bush administration, including the infamous Total Information Awareness data-mining scheme. McConnell has also been a leading figure in outsourcing U.S. intelligence operations to private industry.
McConnell has since the 2008 election stepped down from the top spy post as DNI and returned to Booz-Allen. He has been replaced by Admiral Dennis Blair.
President Bush rushed through FISA and the Patriot Act to ensure the legal authority for comprehensive, high stakes, “drift-net” style and satellite spying capacity on all communications, cell phones, emails, internet searches, medical records, bank accounts, etc. The FBI has been afforded similarly advanced legal authority and technological support to spy on Americans. President Obama has gone a step further-shielding telecomunications companies such as Verizon and AT&T and government officials from privacy violations lawsuits. Obama has also included funds in the stimulus package to hook up the nation to the telecommunications grid, digitize and upload personal medical files, examining them without consent or knowledge.
Looks like Obama’s going to follow in the Bush-Cheney footsteps. General Michael Hayden, Obama’s NSA spymaster, and the man who doesn’t believe in “probable cause” provisions or search warrants, is George Bush’s old CIA partner.
Obama’s favorite companies seem to be General Electric, Microsoft and Google. They, too, will reap the benefits of data mining in the “war on terror”. I wonder what’s in it for him? Oh yeah, his mentor George Soros owns 6 million shares of Halliburton? Guess we know where this is headed.