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“If you want to get your blood boiling, don’t bother sitting out in the sun. Read this book instead.” (CFO Europe, July 2004)
“…he [Briody] is a skilled story teller.” (Financial Times, 13 May 2004)
Following hard on the heels of The Iron Triangle, an examination of international consultants the Carlyle Group, Briody turns his considerable investigative skills to the rise of the Halliburton Corp., its subsidiary Kellogg, Brown and Root and the transformation of the U.S. military establishment. With a blunt matter-of-fact tone, Briody describes the rise of the two companies from the dusty oil fields of west Texas to the marbled corridors of power in Washington, D.C. Briody contends that Halliburton and KBR have literally bought politicians, manipulated the contracting process and ridden the current wave of small wars to record profits. Small, detailed moments of intense private pressure and unscrupulous backroom deal-making dominate this story. While Briody seethes with indignation, there is a grudging respect for the skill with which the executives and politicians ply their trade and a bitter resignation at the reality of the ways of government contracting. Central to the Pentagon’s post–Cold War strategy is outsourcing nonmilitary tasks to private contractors. One of the chief architects of this plan was Dick Cheney, defense secretary for the first President Bush. Briody argues that with Cheney now vice-president and Halliburton awarded a huge no-bid contract to reconstruct Iraq’s oil fields, public outrage has grown. As the controversy simmers, Briody raises an important question: with Americans and Iraqis dying by the day, have military matters become so efficient and profitable for companies like Halliburton that war itself is easier to wage? At times the book is repetitive and has the feel of being rushed to press, but this urgency lends the book a certain gravity. Briody has his own agenda—brilliantly illuminating the increasingly crucial nexus of public need, private profit and war making. Agent, Daniel Greenberg. (May) (Publishers Weekly, May 5, 2004)
PART I: The Early Years.
1. Erle P. Halliburton and the Million-Dollar Boast.
2. The Road to Riches.
PART II: Public Money, Private Profit.
3. The Man Behind the Dam That Built Brown & Root.
4. Guns and Butter.
5. Collateral Damage: The Leland Olds Story.
6. Our Man in Office.
PART III: From Vietnam to Iraq.
7. Vietnam and Project Rathole.
8. Empty Pockets.
9. The Big Score.
10. Backseat Cheney.
11. Fall from Grace.
Posted May 8, 2006
Author Dan Briody has written a book that goes beyond pundit finger-pointing over the controversial 'no-bid' contracts relationship between Halliburton and Vice President Dick Cheney. This is a serious examination of the high-octane blend of profit and politics that fuels the Bush administration's agenda. Briody begins with an extensive history of two Texas companies, Halliburton and Brown & Root (now KBR). He deftly portrays how they made their fortunes despite Great Depression hardships, World War II and political intrigues aplenty. Briody pulls no punches while maintaining a reportorial (if not totally objective) tone, although people who hold different political views might argue with his opinions and conclusions. We recommend this saga to anyone looking for a deeper understanding of the ongoing tryst between corporate America and its politicians. While this book is not presented as a smoking gun, it portrays insider politics that smolder like an oil fire you can't quite extinguish, leaving sort of an ugly haze.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted October 28, 2004
Posted October 6, 2004
Posted June 6, 2004
Republicans, Democrates, independents, etc., all use the same methods to enrich themselves; it's the American way. In general, this book implies guilt through association, but does not provide any significant facts of wrong-doing. It relies on the public's willingness to believe in conspiracy theories. Save your money, don't buy the book.
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