Contractors in Iraq: Money, Killing of Innocent and Rape of American Women

by: Elliott Petty

Mon Dec 10, 2007 at 19:06

U.S. contractors in Iraq have stooped to a new low by covering up a gang-rape of an employee by her co-workers. The young woman claims the U.S. government has failed to prosecute and that crucial evidence has gone missing since being handed over to her former employer Halliburton/ KBR.
Elliott Petty :: Contractors in Iraq: Money, Killing of Innocent and Rape of American Women
Thanks to the works of Robert Greenwald and Brave New Films who produced, "Iraq for Sale, The War Profiteers" we have learned about the connections between private corporations making a killing in Iraq, literally and the decision makers who allow them to do so, with no accountability.

We knew about the killing of innocent people, the missing money, and now add the systemic sexual attack of American women to the list.

According to the victim, Jamie Leigh Jones, she began working for Halliburton at their USA headquarters in Houston, Texas before catching the patriotic bug to support the work of Operation Iraqi Freedom otherwise known as Bush's unnecessary war.

At the time, Halliburton gave assurances that she would be provided with a decent living and working environment, they even added that she was more likely to be in a car accident in the U.S., than anything happening to her in Greenzone, Baghdad.

In July 2005, Jones says she arrived to find her housing placement was within a predominantly all male barracks, with not one other female located there during her tenure.

Feeling uncomfortable as any woman in that situation, she sent several emails to management requesting to be moved due to the constant cat calling she experienced during routine trips to the restroom.

In her words, which can be found at her foundation's website, http://www.jamiesfou...

July 26, 2005 US/ July 27 Baghdad- I started socializing with some Halliburton/ KBR employees, including approximately four or so firefighters. One of these men prepared me a drink and joked that there were no "rooffies" in it, and handed it to me. After having a couple sips, I passed out. I was drugged.

July 28, 2005 US/ July 29 Baghdad- I awoke the next morning in the barracks to find my naked body battered and bruised. I was still groggy from whatever had been put in my drink. I was bleeding from between my legs and my breast implants were severely disfigured. (I found out later that my attackers tore my pectoral muscles due to the brutality of the attack). One of the men who had raped me was brazen enough to be lying in the bottom bunk of my assigned bunk bed. After getting to the clinic and having a rape kit performed, and pictures taken of my bruising, I was locked in a container with no food, no way to call my parents, and was placed under armed guard by Halliburton. I did not have access to soap, toiletries, a tooth brush, or any of my belongings. I was unable to leave, therefore I was imprisoned. After some time, one of the guards allowed me to use his cell phone out of sympathy. I called my father back in Houston, who quickly contacted Congressman Ted Poe, who then initiated a Congressional Inquiry to get me out of Baghdad . At this point I was in a state of shock, severely traumatized, and was scared for my life.

July 29, 2005 US/ July 30 Baghdad- The state department took me to a male psychiatrist to help me stop crying. I was recommended "no caffeine." Halliburton had a meeting with me and I was told that if I went home, I would not have assurance that my job would be held. I was also informed that there is no medical leave for injured contractors.

After I arrived home I went to therapy a couple times a week with a life saving woman who saw me without pay for several months. I was diagnosed with PTSD….

August 18, 2005- I was seen by a plastic surgeon regarding my chest injury and was told I needed surgery due to my severe asymmetry and deformity of my chest. I was told that it would take "several months to heal."

September 6, 2005- I went to get a second opinion on my chest injury at which I was also told that I needed surgery because of my "severe pain" and "trauma of the breast tissue and pectoral muscle."

September 15, 2005- I went to seek legal advice. I then became aware that my employee agreement had an arbitration clause in which Halliburton/KBR could shield me from justice in regards to the civil court system.

February, 2007- I spoke with the state department and was told that my case had still not been presented to the AUSA for prosecution

May 3, 2007- I was told by the state department that my rape kit was missing. The state department had previously ensured both of my parents that the rape kit had made it back to Washington before I even arrived back to the U.S. I had my mom call the state department to refresh their memories.

May 4, 2007- The rape kit was found, however the pictures of the bruises and the doctor's notes from that day were still (and are currently) missing.

May 8, 2007- I received a letter of determination from the EEOC stating that their investigation determined in my favor stating that I was "indeed sexually assaulted by one or more of the Respondent employees and physical trauma was apparent. Respondent's investigation was inadequate and did not effect an adequate remedy". Due to the reason that the management didn't investigate my housing situation, the EEOC found a violation against Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

May 16, 2007- I wrote every senator in the United States to bring awareness to the fact that after approximately two years, I hadn't had one day in court or any movement with my criminal case. I became astutly aware of the jurisdictional loopholes in our justice system, including the fact that before going to Iraq , employees actually sign immunity from Iraqi law. I was also informed that contractors cannot be held accountable under the Uniformed Code of Military Justice. Through the next two months, I received a number of letters stating none of them had jurisdiction to look into the matter.

May 22, 2007- Lynn Falanga flew to Florida to present my case to the AUSA in Florida . She stated that she had "good news" that she felt that there was an 85 percent chance that they were going to go foreword with prosecution. They felt that my criminal case is strong and the only setback was the logistical side of things. She stated that "this will be the first case out of Iraq that has gone this far along with prosecution."

May 31, 2007- Lynn Falanga called me to tell me that the AUSA took on my case as an "intake" so that they could investigate my case diligently. In regards to the missing pictures and doctor's notes that were taken in Baghdad Lynn Falanga and I both called the doctor that performed the rape kit. The doctor stated to both of us that "I have no idea which rape victum you are because so many young contractor girls were raped after drinking with the guys" she also stated that "I performed so many rape kits in the six months that I was stationed there that there would be no way to recall whom yours was."

October 11, 2007- I was told by the state department that the reason why there hasn't been movement in my case is because when I went over to Iraq, there was no jurisdictional codes, policies, or procedures drawn up to law government contractors. The state department let me know that the army should have conducted the investigation, however they would pick up the slack that the army left behind. I was told there are still jurisdictional issues at hand. I have never heard of the army being involved in any type of criminal investigation until today, nor had I ever spoken with any army investigators….

Stunning! Not only are the contractors in Iraq siphoning off the American tax base, they are overseeing the worst systemic abuse of American women in the last 20 years.

And our government has sat on its hands because the Bush administration never established clear rules that hold people accountable.

What else are they hiding? More to come.

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