Thursday, August 02, 2007

Pentagon Selling Weapons To Iran

Is anyone surprised that the Bush administration would sell hi-tech weaponry to nations labeled as members of the Axis of Evil?

If the upcoming war against Iran is going to be a long term milking opportunity for arms dealers, then clearly they need to be able to put up an effective defense against US forces.

If you're a real Republican(Tm) then the Pursuit of Money is a Noble Cause.

h/t Crooks and Liars
GAO: Pentagon Improperly Sold F-14 Parts
By SHARON THEIMER, Associated Press Writer
Wednesday, August 1, 2007

(08-01) 12:53 PDT WASHINGTON, (AP) --

The Pentagon sold more than a thousand aircraft parts that could be used on F-14 fighter jets — a plane flown only by Iran — after announcing it had halted sales of such surplus, government investigators say.

In a report Wednesday, the Government Accountability Office, the investigative arm of Congress, said the Defense Department had improved security in its surplus program to prevent improper sales of sensitive items.

But investigators found that roughly 1,400 parts that could be used on F-14 "Tomcat" fighter jets were sold to the public in February. That came after the Pentagon announced it had suspended sales of all parts that could be used on the Tomcat while it reviewed security concerns.

Iran, trying to keep its F-14s able to fly, is aggressively seeking components from the retired U.S. Tomcat fleet.

The Pentagon's surplus sales division — the Defense Reutilization and Marketing Service — told investigators the parts were sold because it failed to update an automated control list and remove the aircraft parts before they were listed on its Internet sales site.

The GAO's investigation focused on F-14 parts.

"One country with operational F-14s, Iran, is known to be seeking these parts," Greg Kutz, the GAO's managing director of special investigations, wrote in the report. "If such parts were publicly available, it could jeopardize national security."

A Democratic senator said the investigation shows why legislation he proposed that would ban the sale of all F-14 parts is needed.

"The Pentagon's system is still riddled with holes," Oregon Sen. Ron Wyden said in a telephone interview with The Associated Press. "These are the very parts that they said they wouldn't be selling and they still are and so you've got to make sure the changes are going to actually have teeth and work."

The Defense Department said in January that it was suspending sales of all F-14 parts, including those that could be used on multiple types of aircraft, while the Pentagon reviewed security.

That announcement came a few weeks after an investigative report by The Associated Press found weaknesses in surplus-sale security that allowed buyers for Iran, China and other countries surreptitiously to obtain sensitive U.S. military gear including missile components and parts for the Tomcat and Chinook helicopter.

The congressional investigators also looked at sensitive military leftovers in general that were supposed to be destroyed rather than sold in Pentagon surplus auctions.

In the first month of their inquiry, last September, they found the Pentagon had sold 295 items to the public that were supposed to be destroyed. But after that, though several items that were supposed to be destroyed were posted on the surplus Web site as for sale, they were spotted and removed before they were sold, the report said.

The military's surplus service told the GAO that between last August and May, about 2.4 million individual pieces of sensitive surplus were removed from public sale.

The new GAO report comes as a surplus dealer trade association accuses the Pentagon of overreacting to security concerns and wasting taxpayer money by junking thousands of items unrelated to the F-14. That includes leftover gear the group says its members used to buy and sell back to the military when it was needed quickly.

The Defense Department says the allegations are not true. The surplus dealers want Congress to force the Pentagon to do a better job separating sensitive scrap from items that are safe to sell.

Wyden said he understands the group's concerns.

"I think our legislation speaks to some of their philosophy that the Pentagon has bumbled to the point where they can't make the distinction" between sensitive and innocuous surplus, Wyden said.

The F-14 legislation sponsored by Wyden and Democratic Rep. Gabrielle Giffords of Arizona has passed the House and is pending in the Senate.

Wyden said he will try to attach it to a defense spending bill that the Senate is expected to consider next month. The lawmakers sponsored the bill in reaction to the AP's story on surplus security.

7 Comments:

At 5:25 PM, Blogger Edgar said...

Hey, as long as we give billions to the FOC (friends of Cheney) and billions more to the FOB (friends of Bush) for homeland security we will all be safe as can be. Pay the protection money and don't question authority. That's the party line, right? Oh yeah, executive privilege! executive privilege! I hope that clears things up. Face it Wease, we are the faceless rabble to those people.

 
At 1:38 PM, Blogger Edgar said...

Hey Weaseldog, check this out. I get 5 - 10 of those a day in one of my mailboxes. Any suggestions?

 
At 1:44 PM, Blogger Weaseldog said...

Sorry about that Edgar.

a spambot is hitting my site with registration requests.

I'll try to fix it soon. Either that or I'll just delete the site.

 
At 2:08 PM, Blogger Edgar said...

No problem, I thought it was kind of funny because if there was anyone I would have trusted with my e-mail it would have been you. I have many more e-mail addresses, don't delete the forum on my account. Get it? My account? Never mind. ;-)

 
At 2:23 PM, Blogger Weaseldog said...

I was thinking of deleting the forum anyway. It isn't doing any good that I can tell.

I didn't know you were also getting spammed. I should've known though.

Your email address hasn't been given out. You're just getting notifications because you are a moderator.

 
At 2:44 PM, Blogger Edgar said...

I didn't know that I was a moderator. I'm flattered. The forum was okay at first, then slowly fizzled. I haven't been there in awhile, and I never even moderated anything. =.( Anyway, I thought it was fun, but may be ahead of its time. Everyone buys corporate this and never breaks a sweat with the gardening anymore. I got a ton of tomatoes from just three plants this year. I've been freezing them diced.

I read your comment about adding organic material and I agree. I had a friend, who had raised beds that were three feet deep. You couldn't tell it from looking at them, but his romas were ten feet tall, no lie. Those roots went clear to the bottom because of the organic structure of the soil. We had two feet of rain in a short time that year, his plants didn't flood, didn't get root rot, and I don't think he ever watered. If he did, it was once a week at most, deep trickle water. Man, he had so many tomatoes from just eight or ten plants, he had a whole deep freezer full, he canned some too. I have never seen tomato plants like that in Oklahoma.

I was out golfing a few weeks ago. I saw a quarter mile of oak leaves piled up against a fence from last year. The wind collected them there. All I could think of was man, if I had ten acres I would cut trenches and bury every bit of those leaves. I used to collect straw and other stuff from corrals. The organic material just disappears, year after year, you have to keep adding every year, and you can never add too much.

I am really heartsick for a bigger yard and a green house. I don't have the funds to move right now, but it is constantly on my mind. I hope your garden, your chickens, your loved ones, etc., are well. Edgar out.

 
At 3:04 PM, Blogger Edgar said...

BTW, I used a rain barrel this year. I only went to city water once or twice, even on my potted peppers, which need water every day. Have you been saving seeds? I have been learning some about that. Not as easy as I thought in some cases.

 

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