The list of private companies gouging America and its allies since 9/11 is long and dubious. For example (via Mother Jones):
In 2007, US planners decided to pave a 64-mile mountain road between the Afghan towns of Khost and Gardez. They figured it would take $69 million to complete, but the cost swelled to $176 million. Much of that was spent on security, including a lot that went to a local big-swinger known as “Arafat,” who’s now believed to have been working for the insurgents. In May, the New York Times reported that “a stretch of the highway completed just six months ago is already falling apart and remains treacherous.”
A recently released US report found that up to $60 billion had been lost or spent on corruption in Iraq and Afghanistan in the last decade. What glorious wars! And America has still lost both conflicts. Almost comical. Almost.
Charles Tiefer of the Wartime Contracting Commission speaks to Democracy Now!:
There’s no question that while President Obama came in—and you quoted his—you had the recording of his statement when he came in—enthusiastic for more competition, there has not been follow-through. During the budget debates, you do not see enough real reform. The commission looked and found that the current system for providing services, logistic services, like dining facilities, depends on what we called mini-monopolies. There is one company, Fluor, that gets all the logistics work in northern Afghanistan, the new work. There is one company, DynCorp, that gets all the logistics work in southern Afghanistan. And so, there’s no competition over the billions of dollars in new work. None at all.
We had the top officials in the Pentagon came in. And when we asked them, “Why haven’t you made changes?” — let me give you another example, although—which is—could fit with the previous ones: a $2 billion contract for bringing in bulk food commodities in Afghanistan to Supreme Foodservice. Its time was up. It was supposed to be competed. They weren’t ready to compete it. It was extended another $2 billion. And when we asked why, the answer came back, “Well, we weren’t ready. We didn’t have the people. We didn’t have the preparations ready to conduct a competition of that.” The Under Secretary of Defense, Under Secretary Carter, I asked this, and he said, “Well, you just sometimes have to extend these contracts. It’s the wrong thing to stop the incumbent at the end of them.”