We may as well set up a 24-hour-per-day vigil at the graveside of Harry S Truman, because he is gonna rise up out of the grave any day now and make his displeasure known, and I want proprietary rights to the footage and the first interview.
There is no way that the former Dogface and later Senator who took on war profiteers would abide what has happened to this country, and our broken procurement process would certainly have driven him to action years ago. If he were still alive, the article about Barry McCaffrey and his blatant conflicts of interest exposed in today’s NY Times would kill him.
In the spring of 2007 a tiny military contractor with a slender track record went shopping for a precious Beltway commodity.
The company, Defense Solutions, sought the services of a retired general with national stature, someone who could open doors at the highest levels of government and help it win a huge prize: the right to supply Iraq with thousands of armored vehicles.
Access like this does not come cheap, but it was an opportunity potentially worth billions in sales, and Defense Solutions soon found its man. The company signed Barry R. McCaffrey, a retired four-star Army general and military analyst for NBC News, to a consulting contract starting June 15, 2007.
Four days later the general swung into action. He sent a personal note and 15-page briefing packet to David H. Petraeus, the commanding general in Iraq, strongly recommending Defense Solutions and its offer to supply Iraq with 5,000 armored vehicles from Eastern Europe. “No other proposal is quicker, less costly, or more certain to succeed,” he said.
Thus, within days of hiring General McCaffrey, the Defense Solutions sales pitch was in the hands of the American commander with the greatest influence over Iraq’s expanding military.
“That’s what I pay him for,” Timothy D. Ringgold, chief executive of Defense Solutions, said in an interview.
For the last five and a half years, McCaffrey has taken to the airwaves and advocated martial policies that directly benefit his corporate masters, without revealing those conflicts of interest to either the media outlets that employed him as a dispassionate analyst nor to the viewers who trusted him based on his military standing and achievements.
It’s a disgrace, and I don’t care how kind McCaffrey is to underlings (that is his reputation) a war profiteer is a traitor to the nation, and that negates every positive accomplishment he can rightly claim.