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San Francisco protest CACI over torture of Iraqi prisoners by its employees
by Z
Wednesday Jun 2nd, 2004 4:54 PM
Several dozen protesters gathered in front of the San Francisco offices of CACI to protest its actions in Iraq.
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June, 2004 http://www.ActAgainstWar.org

CACI International Inc.: Torture for Profit

Virginia-based CACI International Inc. is worth over $1 billion. With 92% of its revenue coming directly from the federal government, it is one of the clear tech-winners in the ongoing trend to privatize the U.S. military. In the U.S., CACI works on projects such as designing and maintaining intelligence databases, including a contract with the Justice Department.
The corporation's Iraq contract is worth almost $40 million. CACI's "blanket-purchase" agreement with the U.S. government was originally for computer integration and data processing, but such agreements are vaguely-written and open-ended to allow government agencies to make additional requests without requiring a separate bidding process. CACPs no-bid contract in Iraq was extended by the Interior Department to cover the hiring of CACI employees to work as interrogators and in other forms of "counter intelligence."
CACI had 27 employees working as interrogators in Iraq's Abu Ghraib prison. Army Major General Antonio Taguba's February, 2004 report on torture and abuse at the prison found that one of CACI's interrogators, Steven A. Stefanowicz, "allowed and/or instructed MPs, who are not trained in interrogation techniques, to facilitate interrogations by "setting conditions' which were neither authorized and in accordance with applicable regulations/policy. He clearly knew his instructions equated to physical abuse." General Taguba recommended that Mr. Stefanowicz be reprimanded, fired and stripped of his security clearance.
Despite being an international scandal, CACI's stockholders see the Abu Ghraib tragedy as a growth opportunity for the business. According to Darren M. Bagwell, director of research at Thrivent Investment Management, which owns 117,000 shares of CACI, "the current drop [in CACI stock] is an opportunity because their interrogation work is just a sidelight for them - this is an information-technology company." (Wall Street Journal, May 12, 2004)

Eluding Accountability for War Crimes

General Taguba's report and the widespread distribution of torture photographs has lead to a dramatic public outcry against these atrocities and the war in Iraq. Public outrage has been focused on the entire military and civilian chain of command up to the Cabinet and to President Bush himself. Civilian contractors working for the Bush Administration must also be held accountable for their crimes and their profits made literally off of the lives of innocents. According to military intelligence officers, 70-90% of prisoners jailed in Iraq were arrested "by mistake."
As of May 27, 2004, at least five U.S. government investigations into CACI's involvement in Abu Ghraib were underway. The General Services Administration is investigating whether CACI violated contracting rules and whether it should be banned from future government contracts. The Interior Department is reviewing the contracting procedures that allowed to Army to hire CACI and has blocked the Army from using the contract to place new orders with the company, although work already underway will continue. Other inquiries are being conducted by the Army's office of the Inspector General, the Defense Contract Audit Agency and Military intelligence.
Despite the numerous investigations, it is unclear whether private contractors such as CACI can be prosecuted, much less punished, given gaps in current U.S. law and military regulations. As civilians, contractors are not subject to military law or the Geneva Convention and a law that would make U.S. domestic law apply to civilian contractors is sitting on Attorney General John Ashcroft's desk. In Iraq, contractors are exempt from local law through an order issued by U.S. administrator Paul Bremer last year.

Zero Tolerance for Torture - At home or abroad

The phenomenon of prisoner torture is not limited to a prison in Baghdad: the soldiers guilty of torturing Iraqi prisoners have worked as guards in the U.S. prison system, where abuse and torture are regular occurrences. Muslim, Arab and South Asian detainees rounded up since 9/11 have repeatedly been tortured and abused in custody, in manners eerily similar to Abu Ghraib. The Justice Department's Office of the Inspector General issued a 239-page report in April 2003 documenting common instances of torture perpetrated against detainees, including strip-searching, sexual humiliation, sleep deprivation, solitary confinement for weeks or months and physical abuse. Attorneys for two detainees are pressing for the release of 300 hours of videotapes documenting the abuses that have never been made public.
Recent scandals at the California Youth Authority - the state's prison system for youth - have shown the systematic abuse of children held there. Two suicides in January, 2004 were followed the next month by the state's release of a report documented the use of locked cages, almost daily violence, brutality of guards and improper over- and under-use of psychiatric medication. In April, a videotape of a guard pummeling and kicking an inmate after the inmate had been subdued became public.
Torturers at home and abroad must be held accountable for human rights abuses and war crimes. Legal frameworks must shift to ensure that private contractors such as CACI cannot slip through legal loopholes and escape scot-free. The privatization of torture in Iraq is reflective of a war wholly privatized, one that is based on ensuring corporate profit for U.S. corporations by securing Iraq's resources. The only path to democracy and liberation in Iraq is an end to the U.S. occupation, the immediate withdrawal of troops and the restoration of Iraqi sovereignty.

For more information, contact Direct Action to Stop the War at http://www.ActAgainstWar.org
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CACI to Open Probe Of Workers in Iraq
Army Officials Interviewed Employees
By Renae Merle and Ellen McCarthy
Washington Post Staff Writers
Monday, May 3, 2004; Page A16
Defense contractor CACI International Inc. said yesterday it launched an independent investigation of its employees in connection with allegations that Iraqi detainees were abused by U.S. soldiers at an Army-run prison in Iraq.

Six Army soldiers have been charged with the physical and sexual abuse of 20 prisoners at the Abu Ghraib facility, which is about 20 miles west of Baghdad, and others remain under investigation. Employees for Arlington-based CACI were serving as interrogators at the facility, according to an attorney for one of the soldiers facing criminal charges.

Two CACI employees were named in an unreleased internal Army report about abuses at Abu Ghraib, according to a New Yorker article published last week on the magazine's Web site. The report alleges that one employee allowed or ordered untrained military police to set conditions for interrogations that amounted to abuse, and recommends he be fired, according to the New Yorker account. It recommends that the other be disciplined.

CACI acknowledged that its employees had been interviewed by Army officials as part of the investigation, but said in an e-mailed statement that it has "received no indication from the Army that any CACI employee was involved in any alleged improper conduct with Iraqi prisoners."

"CACI has initiated an independent investigation of the actions of Company employees in connection with this matter," the statement said. It was unclear who was conducting the investigation. Company spokeswoman Jody Brown and the company's chief executive and chairman, Jack London, did not return calls yesterday for comment.

"We are appalled by the reported actions of a few," the company statement said. "The Company does not condone or tolerate illegal behavior on the part of its employees when conducting CACI business in any circumstance at any time."

CACI, which gets about 64 percent of its revenue from the Pentagon, has declined to disclose how many employees are working in Iraq or Afghanistan.

According to several Internet job sites, CACI has been recruiting interrogators, senior counterintelligence agents and intelligence analysts for work in Iraq for more than a year, requiring some to have active and current top-secret security clearances. An ad posted on Yahoo's HotJobs Web site in February, under the headline "Exciting intelligence opportunities in Iraq!," sought to recruit interrogators with two or more years "conducting tactical and strategic interrogations." Another posting on IntelligenceCareers.com lists opening for senior counterintelligence agent with 10 years experience and intelligence analysts with a minimum of three years' experience.

Read More
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A61586-2004May2.html
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General Taguba saved his harshest words for the military-intelligence officers and private contractors. He recommended that Colonel Thomas Pappas, the commander of one of the M.I. brigades, be reprimanded and receive non-judicial punishment, and that Lieutenant Colonel Steven Jordan, the former director of the Joint Interrogation and Debriefing Center, be relieved of duty and reprimanded. He further urged that a civilian contractor, Steven Stephanowicz, of CACI International, be fired from his Army job, reprimanded, and denied his security clearances for lying to the investigating team and allowing or ordering military policemen “who were not trained in interrogation techniques to facilitate interrogations by ‘setting conditions’ which were neither authorized” nor in accordance with Army regulations. “He clearly knew his instructions equated to physical abuse,” Taguba wrote. He also recommended disciplinary action against a second CACI employee, John Israel. (A spokeswoman for CACI said that the company had “received no formal communication” from the Army about the matter.)

“I suspect,” Taguba concluded, that Pappas, Jordan, Stephanowicz, and Israel “were either directly or indirectly responsible for the abuse at Abu Ghraib,” and strongly recommended immediate disciplinary action.

http://www.newyorker.com/fact/content/?040510fa_fact
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Company Named In Iraq Prison Torture Report Also Sells Ethics Training Videos To White House
By J.M. Berger INTELWIRE.com

When new employees at the White House want to learn about government ethics, the office that hires them sends a check for $20 (plus $3.25 postage) to CACI Productions Group -- a division of CACI International, one of two civilian defense contractors named in an Army report on the torture of Iraqi prisoners.

After sending payment to CACI, new executive branch employees receive a CACI Productions training video on government ethics titled "You've Got It!" Among other topics, the video covers "issues concerning use of subordinates to perform tasks unrelated to Government service," according to an October 2000 memo from the Office of Government Ethics.

http://www.intelwire.com/2004_05_06_exclusives.html
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CACI faces cuts to ratings over Iraq By Jenny Wiggins in New York
Published: June 2 2004 0:33 | Last Updated: June 2 2004 0:33

CACI International, the US contractor whose employees allegedly helped interrogate prisoners in Iraq, could have its credit ratings downgraded if it loses future government contracts as a result of the situation, a credit agency warned on Tuesday.

Standard & Poor's has changed its outlook on the information technology company's BB junk credit rating to negative from stable amid concern that five investigations into the company's work for the Department of Defense in Iraq could find that its employees participated in abusing prisoners.

If the company - which was hired to provided technology services - is found to have violated the government's rules for contractors, it could be barred from future contracts. CACI receives more than 90 per cent of its revenues from government contracts.

Credit analysts are also worried that CACI's business could suffer from negative publicity. Although services in Iraq are only a small part of the company's overall business, analysts said that CACI could develop a bad reputation.

"The bad publicity could have effects down the road on future contracts," said Ben Bubeck, S&P credit analyst.

The company has already suffered from the allegations, with CACI's shares sliding 16 per cent over the past month to close at $38.23 on Tuesday.

CACI is conducting its own investigation into the allegations but has not admitted to violating any regulations. Nor has it taken any action against its employees, and its contracts with the US army in Iraq continue.

A lower credit rating would make it more expensive for CACI to raise money to develop its business. This year it sold some $550m of debt to buy American Management Systems' defence and intelligence group.

But S&P said that, if the investigations were resolved "favourably", the company's rating outlook might be returned to stable.

http://news.ft.com/servlet/ContentServer?pagename=FT.com/StoryFT/FullStory&c=StoryFT&cid=1085944448184
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Federal Protective Service ( http://www.ice.gov/graphics/about/organization/org_fps.htm ) "protecting" Hawthorne Plaza building ( see http://www.1031nnn.com/propertydetail.asp?cust=5EHK8pFTkDm1p8eY4Zl9c2B4ze8QPvzI and http://www.3cim.com/3cim/slide/ViewTour?id=1079727730709&view=9 )
The building mainly holds offices for the GSA but aside from CACI also contains Immigration offices as well as offices for other agencies now falling under the Homeland Security Department ( http://www.dhs.gov/dhspublic/display?theme=13&content=3345 ).
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Federal Protective Service ( http://www.ice.gov/graphics/about/organization/org_fps.htm ) "protecting" Hawthorne Plaza building ( see http://www.1031nnn.com/propertydetail.asp?cust=5EHK8pFTkDm1p8eY4Zl9c2B4ze8QPvzI and http://www.3cim.com/3cim/slide/ViewTour?id=1079727730709&view=9 )
The building mainly holds offices for the GSA but aside from CACI also contains Immigration offices as well as offices for other agencies now falling under the Homeland Security Department ( http://www.dhs.gov/dhspublic/display?theme=13&content=3345 ).
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LATEST COMMENTS ABOUT THIS ARTICLE
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TITLE AUTHOR DATE
QT movie of the CACI demoBill CarpenterWednesday Jun 9th, 2004 1:45 AM
About tortureDANIELFriday Jun 4th, 2004 1:15 PM
Torture is PatrioticTashunka WitkoFriday Jun 4th, 2004 10:29 AM
good doggiejimThursday Jun 3rd, 2004 11:57 AM
CACI + Mossad!WhorealdoWednesday Jun 2nd, 2004 8:41 PM
keep up good work!jamesWednesday Jun 2nd, 2004 7:43 PM

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