Military Resistance 12A19 Shock

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“In many parts of the country, people can’t move freely in their own districts or villages because militants from different groups arethere," says Naeem Ayubzada, director of the Transparent Election Foundation of Afghanistan, an independent group of 37 Afghan civil society organizations that monitors the election process. According to incident reports from the Ministry of Interior, many of Afghanistan’s 11 provinces that border Pakistan are actively fighting the Taliban and other insurgent groups. Some provinces are believed to be controlled by shadow governments that answer to the Taliban. A female member of parliament from one of the provinces, who didn’t want to be identified for security reasons, says that her province is so insecure that she can only fly into the capital – driving on the roads is too unsafe. “The Taliban control everything in the districts,” she says..

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Military Resistance 12A19

Taliban Spending Up To $400 Million Annually:
“The Poppy Trade, Which Supplies The World’s Heroin Dealers, Is An Important Source Of Income”
“An Estimated One Quarter Of Their $400 Million Annual Budget Comes From The Crops”
“As Drug Production Has Increased, The Ability Of Law Enforcement Figures To Interdict The Drugs Has Diminished”

January 20, 2014 By Anna Mulrine, Staff writer; Christian Science Monitor [Excerpts] The drug problem in Afghanistan is growing, and it threatens to undermine the US war effort of building a stable country there, top Pentagon officials say in some of the sharpest warnings they have ever issued on the topic. Just how to take on Afghanistan’s opium poppy trade, however, has long been a tricky proposition for the US military. Destroy the crops – a sizable source of income for poor farmers in a desperately poor country – and risk the ire of Afghan locals, who may turn to violence to protect their livelihood. But the poppy trade, which supplies the world’s heroin dealers, is also an important source of income for the Taliban – an estimated one quarter of their $400 million annual budget comes from the crops, according to the Department of Defense. The drug also contributes to corruption within the Afghan government, which in turns alienates the population, making them more open to ideas of alternate sources of government like the Taliban is offering. So, what is the status of the opium trade in Afghanistan today? It turns out that last year it reached record levels, with production up 36 percent over 2012, in the latest studies made public in a little-noticed hearing last week of the Senate Caucus on International Narcotics Control. Even as drug production has increased, the ability of law enforcement figures to interdict the drugs has diminished. Indeed, the amount of illicit narcotics seized in Afghanistan has dropped by more than half in the last three years, going from 98 metric tons of opium seized in 2011 to 41 metric tons in 2013.

AFGHANISTAN WAR REPORTS

AFGHANISTAN THEATER “US Foreign Fighters Suffered 20 Combat Casualties During The Week Days Ending Jan. 23 As The Total Rose To 40,353”

Jan 24, 2014 www.michaelmunk.com [Excerpts] AFGHANISTAN THEATER: US foreign fighters suffered 20 combat casualties during the week days ending Jan. 23 as the total rose to 40,353. The total includes 21,394 dead and wounded from what the Pentagon classifies as "hostile" causes and 18,959 dead or medically evacuated (as of Dec. 3, 2012) from what it calls "non-hostile" causes. US media divert attention from the actual cost in American life and limb by reporting regularly only the total killed (6,796: 4,489 in Iraq, 2,307 in Afghanistan) but rarely mentioning those wounded in action (51,828: 32,237 in Iraq; 19,591 in Afghanistan). They ignore the 59,908 (44,607 in Iraq, 18,463 in AfPak (as of Dec 3, 2012) military casualties injured and ill seriously enough to be medevac’d out of theater, even though the 6,796 total dead include 1,456 (961 in Iraq, 496 in Afghanistan) who died from those same "non hostile" causes of whom almost 25% (332) were suicides (as of Jan 9, 2013).

Warrant Officer Killed In Afghanistan

Chief Warrant Officer 2 Edward Balli (Army) Jan. 22, 2014 Army Times An Army warrant officer has been killed in Afghanistan, the Defense Department announced today. Chief Warrant Officer Edward Balli, 42, died Jan. 20 in Kandahar province, Afghanistan, when insurgents attacked him, the DoD announcement said. He died from wounds from small arms fire. Balli, of Monterey, Calif., was assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Troop, 2nd Cavalry Regiment, U.S. Army Europe, Vilseck, Germany.

5 Minnesota Guardsmen Wounded In Afghanistan
Jan. 22, 2014 Army Times LITCHFIELD, MINN. — The Minnesota National Guard says five of its members have been injured in an attack in Afghanistan. Guard spokesman Lt. Col. Kevin Olson says the five members are from the 849th Mobility Augmentation Company based in Litchfield. They were injured during an attack on Forward Operating Base Pasab in Kandahar Province Monday. Olson says one solider is recovering in Germany and the other four are being treated in Afghanistan. Their identities or the extent of their injuries were not released. An assault by bombers and gunmen against the U.S. base in Kandahar’s Zhari district Monday killed one service member, who has not been identified. NATO and an Afghan official say all nine insurgents were killed during the attack.

POLITICIANS REFUSE TO HALT THE BLOODSHED THE TROOPS HAVE THE POWER TO STOP THE WAR

Reality Check:
“The Taliban Control Everything In The Districts”
January 21, 2014 By Halima Kazem, Christian Science Monitor [Excerpts] “In many parts of the country, people can’t move freely in their own districts or villages because militants from different groups are there," says Naeem Ayubzada, director of the Transparent Election Foundation of Afghanistan, an independent group of 37 Afghan civil society organizations that monitors the election process. According to incident reports from the Ministry of Interior, many of Afghanistan’s 11 provinces that border Pakistan are actively fighting the Taliban and other insurgent groups.

Some provinces are believed to be controlled by shadow governments that answer to the Taliban. A female member of parliament from one of the provinces, who didn’t want to be identified for security reasons, says that her province is so insecure that she can only fly into the capital – driving on the roads is too unsafe. “The Taliban control everything in the districts,” she says.

Ethnic Group Backing U.S. Occupation Now Abandoned And Cut Off By The “Death Road”
“The Army Has Humvees, Weapons, Bunkers”
“They Can See The Taliban With Their Eyes But They’re Afraid To Come Out Of The Bunker” “They’re Useless”
Jan. 23, 2014 By Greg Keller, The Associated Press [Excerpts] MAIDAN SHAHR, AFGHANISTAN — Maps refer to it as part of the Kabul-Behsud Highway. Motorists call it Death Road. An 18-mile (30-kilometer) stretch of two paved lanes heading west from the town of Maidan Shahr in central Afghanistan has seen many beheadings, kidnappings and other Taliban attacks in recent years against members of the minority ethnic Hazara community. Nowadays, nearly all drivers avoid it. An alternate route out of Hazarajat involves a long detour to the north, and passes through areas where they have been targets of violence.

For many years, Hazaras had taken the lowest-status jobs in Afghan cities, working unskilled, backbreaking jobs on construction sites. They have done far better, however, since the U.S.-led invasion toppled the Taliban regime in 2001. Hazaras have enrolled in universities, taken jobs with international agencies and even won the Afghan version of American Idol, “Afghan Star,” the last two seasons. Needless to say, Hazaras strongly support a continued presence of international forces after 2014, seeing it as a guarantee of the security, educational and economic gains they have made since Taliban times. But even now, Hazaras cannot rely on international forces to protect them on Death Road. “Construction of schools and clinics has stopped because it’s impossible to travel on this road,” said Mohammad Fahimi, the highest-ranking Hazara on the local provincial council. “The army has Humvees, weapons, bunkers. They can see the Taliban with their eyes but they’re afraid to come out of the bunker. They’re useless.” “The road is blocked, I can’t travel to talk to my constituents. The people elected me but I can’t to talk to them and find out what they need,” Fahimi said. At the province’s brand new police headquarters, new Humvees are parked outside and about 50 recruits stand at attention in the dusty parade ground. The police chief, Gen. Mohammad Fahim Qhiem, has promised to improve security on the road. Qhiem said the August killings remain unsolved, but he’s talked with village elders among the largely Pashtun population living along the road. “Now it is OK, the road is safe,” Qhiem said. Fahimi disagreed. He called his district, Behsud, “the worst place for Hazara safety in all of Afghanistan.”

SOMALIA WAR REPORTS

Government Forces In Retreat As Insurgents Mass To Attack Mahaday
Jan 23, 2014 Garowe Online

JOWHAR, Somalia The Somali Federal Government troops in Middle Shabelle region town of Mahaday of southern Somalia Thursday made immediate pull out as Al Shabaab militants regroup near the strategic town, Garowe Online reports. Speaking on condition of anonymity, concerned residents of Mahaday tell Garowe Online News Agency that soldiers in armoured personnel carriers left for unknown vicinities from military bases in the outskirts of the town. “There is a fear here (in Mahaday) and renowned individuals including traditional leaders fled to other areas because they feared to be targeted by Al Shabaab militants,” an eye witness told GO. According to independent sources, Al Shabaab fighters are regrouping nearby villages to pour into the southern Somali town.

Insurgent Fighters Attack Kenyan Occupation Troop Bases In Kismaayo
January 22, 2014 by: Mursal, Harar24 Mogadishu – Intense clashes occurred last night at the city of Kismaayo as Kenyan DF bases at the airport came under attack. Kismayo which is located in the Lower Jubba province has seen a lot of violence since the past year after Kenyan troops pushed Al-Shabaab out of the city. Residents in Kismaayo reported that fighters belonging the Al-Shabaab movement carried out several attacks targeting the KDF bases situated just outside the town. According to locals who spoke to our correspondent a range of light to heavy weapons were used in last night’s attack at the city of Kismaayo in the Lower Jubba region. “Around midnight we heard a lot of heavy gun fire, shelling in the airport direction” a resident told a Harar24 reporter over the phone from Kismaayo. This attack comes after Kismaayo interim administration security forces finished a week long operation in which hundreds of people were arrested all around the city. As the attack occurred at night the exact casualties on both sides are still not fully known. Al-Shabaab has recently increased their nightly attacks on KDF bases in Kismaayo Airport, which they say will continue until Kenyan Soldiers leave the city.

Gun Prices In Mogadishu Drop:
New Government Trainee Soldiers Graduate, Sell Their Weapons;
Foreign Occupation Soldiers “Are Equally Guilty Of Also Selling Guns And Ammunitions In The Black Market”
January 23, 2014 by: Mursal, Harar24 Mogadishu – It has become the norm in the Somali capital that whenever new recruits from the Somali National Army graduate, a sudden price drop in the weapons market is noticed. Arms dealers who deal in Mogadishu’s gun markets said the prices of the AK-47 was as low as $900 dollars this morning, a big drop from last week’s price of $1400. It’s speculated that the new trainees have been selling their weapons to weapon dealers in the black market. According to many residents in the capital city of Mogadishu, the price drop of weapons is directly linked to the recent distribution of new weapons amongst newly trained soldiers in the Somali government. This however is not a new phenomenon, as many residents also testify that AMISOM soldiers are equally guilty of also selling guns and ammunitions in the black market. It was last year when at least eighteen top Ugandan officers were charged with corruption related crimes in Somalia, such as selling rations and food belonging to the troops.

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Comments, arguments, articles, and letters from service men and women, and veterans, are especially welcome. Write to Box 126, 2576 Broadway, New York, N.Y. 10025-5657 or email [email protected]: Name, I.D., withheld unless you request publication. Same address to unsubscribe.

MILITARY NEWS
NOT ANOTHER DAY NOT ANOTHER DOLLAR NOT ANOTHER LIFE

A transfer case containing the remains of Chief Warrant Officer 2 Edward Balli on Jan. 22, at Dover Air Force Base, Del. Balli, 42, of Monterey, Calif., died Jan. 20, in Kandahar province, Afghanistan, of wounds from small arms fire.

Pentagon Contract Workers Walk Off Jobs, Demanding Higher Wages:
“When I Started Working Here Eight Years Ago I Made Nine Dollars An Hour And I Still Make Nine An Hour”

“The Federal Government Is America’s Leading Low-Wage Job Creator, Funding More Than 2 Million Low-Wage Jobs”

Protestors hold signs of Martin Luther King Jr. as they head towards a rally in front of the Pentagon on Jan. 22. (Jane Herman/Medill News Service) Jan. 22, 2014 By Jane Herman and Mary Kate Hayes, Medill News Service WASHINGTON — More than 100 Pentagon contract workers carrying posters of Martin Luther King Jr. and singing “We Shall Overcome” picketed outside the building Wednesday to demand that companies doing business with the federal government raise the minimum wage. The workers want increased wages and improved working conditions for their taxpayerfunded jobs. Legislation to raise the minimum wage from $7.25 to $10.10 an hour is stalled in Congress. “When I started working here eight years ago I made nine dollars an hour and I still make nine an hour,” said Jerome Hardy, a contracted food server at the Courtyard Café in the Pentagon and a single father. “I work hard to serve American heroes, but I still end up with zero.” A recent report by Demos, a public policy group that studies ways to improve the economy for middle-class Americans, asserted that the federal government is America’s leading low-wage job creator, funding more than 2 million low-wage jobs.

With President Obama’s State of the Union speech less than a week away, Pentagon workers called on Obama to sign an executive order ensuring that federal government contractors raise wages. Pentagon contract workers are employed by companies that operate inside the Pentagon, including McDonald’s, Taco Bell and Dunkin’ Donuts. The job action was part of the Good Jobs Nation campaign, an effort by advocacy groups such as the NAACP and Interfaith Worker Justice to increase the pay of federally contracted workers employed by private companies. While this was the first time the Pentagon workers have walked off their jobs, this is the seventh such action in seven months by contract workers at federal buildings. Other sites included Smithsonian Museums, the Old Post Office and the Ronald Reagan Building.

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ANNIVERSARIES

January 25th, 1991:
Honorable Anniversary:
Veterans Organize To Support Resistance Among U.S. Troops In Germany

[Stars and Stripes Newspaper, January 25, 1991] [Thanks to Dave Blalock, GI Café Kaiserslautern, Jan 15, 2011]

January 26, 1784:
Prophetic Anniversary: Ben Franklin Says The Imperial Eagle Is A Thieving Piece Of Shit

Carl Bunin Peace History January 21-27 Benjamin Franklin, noting the bald eagle was “a bird of bad moral character” who lived “by sharping and robbing,” expressed regret it had been selected to be the U.S. national symbol. In fact, Franklin was critical of the bald eagle for its habit of scavenging for food and stealing from other birds. “You may have seen him perched on some dead tree, where, too lazy to fish for himself, he watches the labor of the fishing-hawk, and when that diligent bird has at length taken a fish, and is bearing it to its nest for the support of his mate and young ones, the bald eagle pursues him and takes it from him,” Franklin said.

CLASS WAR REPORTS

Movement That Seemed To Be Fading Was Re-Energized By Opposition To New Laws

Against Public Assembly Passed Last Week:
“Fighting Broke Out Between Riot Police Officers And Protesters Who Gathered To Object To New Laws” “The Parliament Voted For These Unpopular Laws, Blatantly Violating Human Rights”
“They Constantly Steal, And They Pass Laws For Themselves And Their Businesses”

A man sprayed fire toward riot police officers in Kiev, Ukraine, on Monday as protests that have been going on for over two months grew more confrontational. Genya Savilov/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

“There are all sorts of people there now: radicals, nationalists, teenagers with baseball bats, babushkas beating barrels with sticks, Cossacks picking up the cobblestones that are not dismantled yet. JAN. 20, 2014 By ANDREW E. KRAMERJAN, New York Times [Excerpts] KIEV, Ukraine — The catapult that went up on a central street of this city on Monday was a clear sign that the protests that have been going on here for more than two months were taking a darker turn. About 10 feet tall, the catapult was piled with bags full of cobblestones to send whistling into the ranks of the police. Men in masks hovered around it but did not let loose, apparently fearful of hitting protesters, given the large crowd nearby. Clashes between demonstrators and the police continued Monday after fighting broke out the day before between riot police officers and protesters who had gathered to object to new laws limiting public assembly. A struggle began for a small swath of a side street near Independence Square, the center of the protest. As the police have escalated their use of force — hurling ostensibly safe stun grenades and firing rubber bullets that have maimed at least four people and injured scores of others — so have the protesters. “We’re on a crusade now,” one man wearing a balaclava said, pointing proudly at the scrap-wood catapult, designed to fire cobblestones about 200 yards down range into the police, with presumably devastating effect. The protests began in November after President Viktor F. Yanukovich declined to sign a free-trade agreement with the European Union, negotiating a financial aid deal with Russia instead. A movement that seemed to be fading was re-energized by opposition to new laws against public assembly passed last week. “We stood, we asked peacefully, but the government didn’t hear us,” said Svyatislav Y. Shamis, 32, a lawyer, while watching preparations to fire the catapult. “The Parliament voted for these unpopular laws, blatantly violating human rights. They constantly steal, and they pass laws for themselves and their businesses.” In a sign of the darkening mood, two dazed men walked into a group of demonstrators on Monday morning naked, barefoot and covered in welts, a video of the scene showed. The men said they had been detained by riot police officers, stripped of their clothes and shot multiple times at close range with rubber bullets, then let go as a warning to others.

The newspaper Ukrainskaya Pravda said at least 11 protesters had been abducted by unknown men on side streets near the square since Sunday. The Interior Ministry published an order Monday that authorized the police to use lethal force if needed, though there was no indication that they had done so on Monday. Protesters threw firebombs made from beer bottles and gasoline. In the cold evening air, they arced in curlicues of sparks and then burst into fire on the shields of the riot police. Opposition leaders including Arseniy P. Yatsenyuk, a leader of the Fatherland Party, and Vitali Klitschko, a former heavyweight boxing champion and the leader of the political party Ukrainian Democratic Alliance for Reform, have renounced the violence but have been powerless to stop it. The opposition has long expressed fears that the government would use an incidence of violence as a pretext to clear the otherwise largely peaceful protest movement from Independence Square. Instead, Mr. Yanukovich, in a statement posted on his website, called for calm but also warned of an imminent response to the civil uprising in the capital. Hanna Hrabarska, an independent photographer, described the scene on her Facebook page: “There are all sorts of people there now: radicals, nationalists, teenagers with baseball bats, babushkas beating barrels with sticks, Cossacks picking up the cobblestones that are not dismantled yet. So, if you have weak nerves, better not to go there.”

MORE:

Update On Ukraine AntiGovernment Street Warfare:
Autonomous Workers Union, Kiev Local Says:
“People Go Into The Streets To Protest Against Police Violence”
“The Ukrainian Repressive System Leans On The Police Apparatus And Street Gangs Of Pro-Government Stormtroopers”

21.01.2014 by Autonomous Workers Union, Tahriricn.wordpress.com/ The laws which were passed on January 16th showed that the faction of the ruling class which now controls the government is ready to install a reactionary bourgeois dictatorship on the model of the Latin American regimes of the 1970s. The “dictatorship laws” criminalize any protest and limit the freedom of speech; also, they establish responsibility for “extremism”. Parliamentary mouthpieces of the class dictatorship of corrupted bureaucracy and monopolist bourgeoisie are the Party of Regions and the so called “Communist” Party of Ukraine which has long ago become a political force serving interests of capital. The Ukrainian repressive system leans on the police apparatus and street gangs of progovernment stormtroopers. Sometimes such paramilitary structures are commanded by retired police officers. Death squads are also in action. According to confirmed information, two people were kidnapped from a hospital and tortured. One of them died in a forest. Special forces use pinpoint firing against protesters, and not only from traumatic guns. One of the killed, according to a photo of his body, was shot in his heart. According to all indications he was a victim of a sniper. In the morning of January 23 the number of the killed constituted from 5 to 7 persons. And we don’t know the real scale of violence. The ideology of the ruling regime is a mixture of Putin-style nationalism, conspiracy theories and conviction in their right, as elite, to rule over stupid populace. Groups of support to Berkut (the main riot police force) in social networks are full of antiSemitic articles which claim that the opposition leaders are Jews and want to vitiate the people by legalizing same-sex marriages. This hardly differs from the rhetoric of Ukrainian right radicals. Over the last days not only the far right confront the government, but also people of more moderate views. And they constitute the majority of the protesters. Many of them are indifferent to nationalism or negatively predisposed to it. Many of them don’t support integration into the EU. People go into the streets to protest against police violence. And a significant part of them is unenthusiastic or even skeptical about the clashes in the Grushevskogo street. Often one can hear that right radicals are a “Trojan horse” of Yanukovych and special services, designed to discredit the protest. Certainly there

would be many more Kievites participating in the protests if there was a way to take those idiots useful to the government out of the streets. Top of their demands is to give them jobs in the Security Service of Ukraine after the “victorious revolution”. Anarchists ought to participate in demonstrations and pickets which are dedicated to defense of the rights and freedoms usurped by the laws of January 16th. It makes sense to take action at one’s workplace or neighborhood and to help sabotage the dictatorship’s decisions. There’s not much sense in participating in the activities in Grushevskogo street, which were meaningless from the very beginning. These activities only give the government pretty picture for television and enable it to identify radical elements by locating mobile phones and videotaping. In the case of the opposition’s victory, as well as in the case of the government’s victory we’ll have to wage long and hard war against any of those regimes. This should be understood. We need to gather forces in order to start dictating our own libertarian and proletarian agenda in Ukrainian politics. No gods, no masters! No nations, no borders! Autonomous Workers’ Union, Kiev local January 23, 2014

Insurrection In Anbar:
“Maliki Has Persistently Targeted Sunni Arab Politicians For Prosecution In The Past Two Years”
January 20, 2014 By Dan Murphy, Staff writer; Christian Science Monitor [Excerpts] The very day the last US troops left Iraq, Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, from the Shiite-Islamist Dawa Party, turned the screws on senior Sunni Arab politicians in parliament, signaling his intention to crush his political enemies. Mr. Maliki called for a vote of no confidence against Deputy Prime Minister Saleh alMutlaq and issued an arrest warrant for Vice President Tariq al-Hashemi, the country’s most senior elected Sunni Arab officials. In the years since, Maliki’s government has worked steadily to undo whatever progress toward political reconciliation had been made prior to the US exit. Maliki has persistently targeted Sunni Arab politicians for prosecution in the past two years and has failed to deliver on promises of jobs and money that were made to Sunni Arab fighters who joined the fight against the insurgency in 2007.

When a senior Iraqi general was killed in an ISIS ambush in December, Maliki used the attack as a pretense to violently clear a Sunni Arab protest encampment in Ramadi, and arrested a senior Sunni Arab member of parliament. That sparked insurrection in Anbar, particularly in Ramadi and in Fallujah (the town where US troops fought two famously bloody battles in 2004). Anbar hates and fears the central government in Baghdad since, after all, the Shiitedominated government of Maliki has treated the region and its leaders like dirt.

Police Chiefs Say Water Cannon Are Needed Across England And Wales “Because ‘Austerity Measures Are Likely To Lead To Continued Protest’”
[Let’s Hope So]
[Thanks to Mark Shapiro, Military Resistance Organization, who sent this in.] 22 January 2014 by Alan Travis, home affairs editor; Guardian News and Media Limited [Excerpts]

Chief constables are to press the home secretary, Theresa May, to authorise the use of water cannon by any police force across England and Wales to deal with anticipated street protests. The Association of Chief Police Officers (Acpo) says that the need to control continued protests "from ongoing and potential future austerity measures" justifies the introduction of water cannon in Britain for the first time. The report says there is no intelligence to suggest there is an increased likelihood of serious riots within England and Wales, but states "it would be fair to assume that the ongoing and potential future austerity measures are likely to lead to continued protest".

DANGER: POLITICIANS AT WORK

U.S. Accuses Security Background Check Firm Of Fraud:
“More Than 660,000 Flawed Background Investigations—40% Of The Cases It Sent To The Government Over A Four-Year Period”

“Improper Practices Became A Subject Of Internal Jokes Among Company Officials”
USIS Got “More Than $4 Billion In Federal Contracts”
In an effort to meet internal revenue goals set by a former company president in 2008, USIS created a special software program called "Blue Zone" that allowed it to send cases to the federal government even if they hadn’t gone through a thorough review process as required by its contract, the complaint said. Jan. 22, 2014 By Dion Nissenbaum, Wall Street Journal [Excerpts] WASHINGTON—The Justice Department on Wednesday accused the government’s largest private security background check contractor of defrauding the country of millions of dollars by methodically filing more than 660,000 flawed background investigations— 40% of the cases it sent to the government over a four-year period. Prosecutors accused former top US Investigations Services LLC executives of directing improper practices that became a subject of internal jokes among company officials who helped secure millions of dollars in bonuses from the U.S. government. The details emerged as the Justice Department filed a 25-page civil complaint to join a whistleblowers’ lawsuit against USIS under way in U.S. District Court in Alabama. In the complaint, U.S. attorneys accused USIS of using its close ties with the federal government to conceal the so-called practice of flushing background checks—sending the government cases that didn’t have proper review. "Flushed everything like a dead goldfish," the complaint quoted one USIS official as writing to two of the company’s top quality control officials in 2010. USIS has served as the government’s largest security background check company since the Clinton administration privatized the federal operation in 1996. The company handles about 45% of federal background checks, which are used by the Defense Department, Department of Homeland Security and more than 100 other federal agencies. The government uses the USIS background investigations to determine whether or not to give millions of people access to classified programs and buildings. About 90% of the company’s work comes from the U.S. government. Over the past decade, USIS has been awarded more than $4 billion in federal contracts, according to contracting records.

USIS conducted what federal officials say was a faulty 2011 background investigation of Edward Snowden, the former National Security Agency contractor who leaked classified documents on the government’s surveillance programs to the international media. The company also conducted a 2007 security examination of Aaron Alexis, the defense contractor who died last September after killing 12 people in a shooting spree at the Washington Navy Yard. The whistleblowers’ lawsuit was filed by Blake Percival, a longtime employee at the company who served six months as director of fieldwork services until he left in June 2011. In his lawsuit, Mr. Percival accused USIS of rushing improperly reviewed background check cases through the system and hiding the practice from the federal Office of Personnel Management, which oversees most such investigations. In all, the agency oversees 2.2 million background investigations a year. The government’s investigation lends significant weight to Mr. Percival’s allegations. The Justice Department had signaled last year it would join Mr. Percival’s lawsuit and outlined its case in the filing Wednesday. In the complaint, federal prosecutors said that top USIS officials used what it called the firm’s fraudulent scheme to secure nearly $12 million dollars in bonuses from the federal government, which thought the company was exceeding goals for completing thorough background checks. In an effort to meet internal revenue goals set by a former company president in 2008, USIS created a special software program called "Blue Zone" that allowed it to send cases to the federal government even if they hadn’t gone through a thorough review process as required by its contract, the complaint said. Over a four-year period, USIS "dumped" at least 665,000 cases in a process that was the subject of jokes shared by company officials, the complaint said. "Scalping tickets for ‘Dick Clark’s Dumpin’ New Year’s Eve!…Who needs 2?" a USIS workload leader wrote in an email to the company’s director of National Quality Assurance and Quality Control Director on Dec. 27, 2010, and cited in the federal complaint. "Have a bit of a backlog building, but fortunately, most people are off this week so no one will notice!"

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[THEY STOPPED AN IMPERIAL WAR]

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