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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
OCTOBER 24, 2003
1:55 PM
CONTACT:  MoveOn.org
Lisa Sabori
(212) 584-5000x309
Leaked Halliburton CEO Memo Promotes 'Spin' Campaign on Overcharges in Iraq
 
WASHINGTON - October 24 - Officials at Halliburton, which continues to deliver wads of money to Vice President Richard Cheney for his services as CEO prior to the 2000 elections, are pulling out all stops to ward off further scrutiny of its handing of billions of dollars in non-competitive Defense Department contracts with a subsidiary supporting the war and occupation in Iraq.

The CEO of Halliburton, David Lesar, sent a memo to company employees last Friday (one of whom made it available to Misleader.org) urging each of them to send a letter to local newspaper editors, “so we can be heard over those who are distorting our efforts.”

On Tuesday two members of Congress released a letter from Iraq’s national oil company saying it pays between 90 and 98-cents per gallon for fuel it imports into Iraq, while Halliburton is charging as much as $1.70. Reps. Henry A. Waxman (D-CA) and John Dingell (D-MI) contend the company is gouging the U.S. Treasury.

Lesar helpfully provided “talking points” for employees, outlining Halliburton’s Kellog, Brown & Root’s virtues as “one of the few companies in the world that can do the work needed by the U.S. military.” KBR has a long history of controversy in its federal contract work. As recently as last year KBR paid $2 million to settle a criminal charge for overbilling the government.

No word from the White House on whether the President approves of Halliburton’s cost overruns or its PR campaign. But when other corporate scandals were in the news here’s what President Bush told the American people: “Corporate leaders who violate the public trust should never be given that trust again." But then, Halliburton has a special relationship with the Bush Administration.

For details and documentation of this latest George W. Bush misleader incident, including a copy of the David Lesar email entitled “Defending Our Company,” see www.misleader.org

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