Monday, August 27, 2007

Whistleblowers in Iraq fired, demoted, imprisoned

Ed Brayton at Dispatches from the Culture Wars has a report on how individuals blowing the whistle on corruption in Iraq rebuilding efforts are being treated--they're being fired, demoted, and even imprisoned. Donald Vance reported that the company he was working for, Shield Group Security Co., was selling guns, land mines, and rocket launchers to insurgents, U.S. soldiers, State Department workers, and Iraqi embassy employees for cash. He didn't know who to trust in Iraq, so he reported it to an FBI agent in Chicago. The result--he was thrown in to an American military prison outside of Baghdad for 97 days and subjected to harsh interrogations.

Brayton also reports on how two whistleblowers brought a civil suit regarding corruption by their former employer, Custer Battles, winning a $10 million jury award, only to have it overturned by the federal district judge on the grounds that the Coalition Provisional Authority in Iraq was not part of the U.S. government.

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