June 07, 2006


Just unbelievable:
For the first time since Congress mandated its annual publication, a State Department report cataloging human trafficking across the globe includes allegations that American taxpayers financed such abuses.

This year's Trafficking in Persons Report... includes a special section on reforms the Defense Department instituted after an investigation prompted by "Pipeline to Peril," a series published by the Chicago Tribune in October that detailed human trafficking into Iraq for privatized U.S. military support operations.

Human brokers and subcontractors from Asia to the Middle East have worked in concert to import thousands of laborers into Iraq from impoverished countries, often employing fraud or coercion along the way, seizing workers' passports and charging recruitment "fees" that make it difficult for workers to escape employment in the war zone.

U.S. military leaders in Iraq have acknowledged confirming widespread abuses against such workers, who are brought to Iraq to do menial labor on U.S. bases for contractors and subcontractors. Those businesses ultimately receive their checks from the U.S. government. The abuses corroborated by military investigators included violations of U.S. human-trafficking laws...

While the Tribune series, and subsequent Defense Department investigations, detailed abuses of workers contracted for American military bases, thousands of other such workers have been imported into Iraq for contractors paid by the State Department or other agencies.

One of the State Department's largest contractors in Iraq, a Kuwaiti construction firm, is building the new U.S. Embassy on a nearly $600 million contract. The company was implicated by the Tribune last year for allegedly trying to force unwilling Nepalese workers into Iraq from Kuwait, allegations denied by the firm but corroborated by a Nepalese Foreign Ministry official who rescued nearly 200 of his countrymen from Kuwait.
This comes on a day when the New York Times pays neo-conservative stooge Nicholas Kristof for an article titled "In Praise of the Maligned Sweatshop":
Anyone who cares about fighting poverty should campaign in favor of sweatshops, demanding that companies set up factories in Africa.
Smells like Fascism. Looks like Fascism. Tastes like Fascism...


Blog Archive