KBR Memos Reveal Knowledge of Dangerous Conditions Before Sending Drivers Into Fire Fight

kbr_logoThe lawsuit against KBR by the families of civilian drivers killed in an ambush in Iraq in 2004 have been strengthened by internal memos showing that KBR officials knew of the insurgent activity and high level of danger before sending them into harm’s way.

KBR is essentially arguing that they could not stop the convoy ordered by the military contractor. Yet, the company did precisely that with later convoys after the drivers were killed.

Most notably, KBR’s Iraq project manager said in 2003 that supervisors could “stop any activity which you believe to be unsafe.” The memos greatly strengthen these claims and could create new precedent for the future use of civilians in combat zones at a time when the military is outsourcing many such jobs. There is a dangerous blind spot in legal protection where the military cannot be sued for failure to protect the convoy while the contractor claims no independent obligation to judge the dangers of particular routes or convoys. I disagree with that legal argument. KBR clearly retains the right to withhold drivers from routes that it considers too dangerous and the military cannot order civilians into active combat areas with imminent dangers to their life or limb.

The case will go to trial in March. Fisher v. Halliburton, 05-cv-01731 U.S. District Court, Southern District of Texas (Houston).

For the full story, click here.

11 thoughts on “KBR Memos Reveal Knowledge of Dangerous Conditions Before Sending Drivers Into Fire Fight”

  1. Guess again…


    Patty C 1, March 8, 2008 at 5:17 pm

    Previously posted – from my ‘Greatest Hits’ Album…

    By David Keene

    Posted: 04/30/07 06:24 PM [ET]
    “Anyone who knows much about real power in Congress knows that almost every member of the House and Senate lusts after a seat on the Appropriations Committee and hopes one day to achieve the status of Cardinal. The Cardinals, of course, are the folks who chair the various Appropriations Committee subcommittees and literally control the billions of dollars that pass through their hands.

    California Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D) chairs the Senate Rules Committee, but she’s also a Cardinal. She is currently chairwoman of the Interior, Environment and Related Agencies subcommittee, but until last year was for six years the top Democrat on the Military Construction, Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies (or “Milcon”) sub-committee, where she may have directed more than $1 billion to companies controlled by her husband…”

  2. One thing to remember is that there are very few companies that could have done the logistics in Iraq and Afghanistan. So it is understandable to have a no bid contract. It certainly should have been managed better by the feds. I know one of the lawyers that put all this stuff together and he was a very straight arrow so I am pretty sure the pentagon tried to do the right thing.

    with that much money it is hard to keep a good handle on it and I am sure some got missused. Hopefully not billions and billions.

  3. But no-one seems to remember the tens of millions in personal profit that Pelosi’s husband made through his partial ownership in Perini— (contractor company in Iraq that charged $1 million per mile or road constructed in Basra).

    Wrong, Feinstein’s husband Richard Blum owned Perini

  4. Jay Rizzo,

    Do I go Baaaa Baaaa and stand in line for the next train to the Ozarks or do you? This link may be totally irrelevant but you might like the read. I will acknowledge that there are a lot of things that I am ignorant about. And when I learn that I don’t know something. I can and will look at an issue from all perspectives. Its one thing to know your case it another thing to know the opponents case better. Oh yes, this is from the USACE April 18, 2009 news letter.


    Oh well Baa Baa White sheep. . . .

  5. Uneducated sheep.

    Well, at least we’re not hyper defensive boors who make incorrect assumptions about knowledge bases. And if you think Halliburton, with their non-competitive contracts, missing pallet of cash and suspicious relocation out of jurisdiction are Cheney’s FORMER company? Well, I’d rather be ovis aries than naive.

    Yours truly,

    A former Bechtel employee

    P.S. None of that obviates that Pelosi sucks.

  6. You people are uneducated sheep. Yes, the USACE does do that… but who do you think does the labor? Corp of engineers people have NEVER in history lifted a hammer, anyone that tells you different is lying. They hire contractors to follow their instruction. When buildings have to be built-torn down-rebuilt… thats USACE’s fault, not the contractors.

    Everyone likes ragging on Halliburton because its Cheneys former company. But no-one seems to remember the tens of millions in personal profit that Pelosi’s husband made through his partial ownership in Perini— (contractor company in Iraq that charged $1 million per mile or road constructed in Basra).

  7. I am sorry about this. Does anyone remember that the tribute to Cheney was Sig Heil, Sig Heil. Oh wrong war, sorry. My Malaprop.

    The reality is that Cheney although not the First Commander In Chief but damn close. How do you divide that power? But suffice it to say, Cheney was running the Whitehouse. He was the current CEO of Haliburton, no I am sorry, he was technically the Veep but was running Haliburton and KBR is a wholly owned subsidiary of Haliburton Oil.

    The interesting tidbit on this is Johnson, yeah Lyndon had connections to Haliburton through Lady Bird. Yes her family was them.

    And a last part of this, Johnson during, drum rolls, Vietnam authorized Brown and Root at that time to do civil engineering and construction of the bridges, that our service men had to cross. Hummmm, maybe I was confused that was that not the Army Corp of Eng that were supposed to do that after the military landed and made the area clear?

    Heck call me what ever you want, but do please cal me.

  8. KBR routinely refused missions if they thought the were too dangerous. Dina Razor documented this in detail. Our troops have been put in danger by contractors who refused to bring food, fuel, water and parts (to name a few) while continuing to receive obscene amounts of money. There is no excuse to hire contractors in the first place except for the fact that they are completely connected politically. They put our people in harms way. To claim they couldn’t not do the mission is flat out contradicted by reality. &%$#-them.

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