DynCorp

From SourceWatch
Jump to: navigation, search

DynCorp is a Virginia-based military contractor that describes itself as a "highly successful provider of critical support to military and civilian government institutions," with "commercial business in aviation, infrastructure development, security, and logistics, including international projects to build and manage regional air facilities," according to its website. [1]

History

DynCorp began in 1946 as a project of a small group of returning World War II pilots seeking to use their military contacts to make a living in the air cargo business. Named California Eastern Airways, the original company was soon airlifting supplies to Asia used in the Korean War. By 2002 Dyncorp, headquartered in Reston, Virginia, was the nation's 13th largest military contractor with $2.3 billion in revenue until it merged with Computer Sciences Corporation, an El Segundo, California-based technology services company, in an acquisition worth nearly $1 billion.

According to the now-defunct website dyncorp-sucks.com,

"On March 7, 2003, Computer Sciences Corporation acquired DynCorp. Today, the combined companies stand apart as one of the largest and most successful information technology and outsourcing firms in the world. The combined companies have some 90,000 employees around the globe who are dedicated to responding to customers' needs. CSC reported revenue of $11.3 billion for the 12 months ending December 27, 2002. U.S. Federal government customers include the Department of Defense, State, Energy and Justice. Commercial clients include BAE Systems, DuPont, General Dynamics and Raytheon."[1]

DynCorp is a member of the International Peace Operations Association and the Private Security Company Association of Iraq.

Contracts

DynCorp was awarded a multimillion-dollar contract by the U.S. Department of State to advise the Iraqi government on setting up effective law enforcement, judicial and correctional agencies, CorpWatch reported:

DynCorp will arrange for up to 1,000 U.S. civilian law enforcement experts to travel to Iraq to help locals "assess threats to public order" and mentor personnel at the municipal, provincial and national levels. The company will also provide any logistical or technical support necessary for this peacekeeping project. DynCorp estimates it could recoup up to $50 million for the first year of the contract.

Armed DynCorp employees make up the core of the police force in Bosnia. DynCorp troops protect Afghanistan president Hamid Karzai, while DynCorp planes and pilots fly the defoliation missions over the coca crops in Colombia. Back home in the United States, Dyncorp is in charge of the border posts between the US and Mexico, many of the Pentagon's weapons-testing ranges and the entire Air Force One fleet of presidential planes and helicopters. The company also reviews security clearance applications of military and civilian personnel for the Navy.

Controversies

Coca Eradication

Under the Plan Colombia contract, the company has 88 aircraft and 307 employees - 139 of them American - flying missions to eradicate coca fields in Colombia. Soldier of Fortune magazine once ran a cover story on DynCorp, proclaiming it "Colombia's Coke-Bustin' Broncos."

US Rep. Janice Schakowsky, an Illinois Democrat, told Wired magazine that hiring a private company to fly what amounts to combat missions is asking for trouble. DynCorp's employees have a history of behaving like cowboys," Schakowsky noted. "Is the US military privatizing its missions to avoid public controversy or to avoid embarrassment - to hide body bags from the media and shield the military from public opinion?" she asked.

Indeed a group of Ecuadoran peasants filed a class action against the company in September 2001. The suit alleges that herbicides spread by DynCorp in Colombia were drifting across the border, withering legitimate crops, causing human and livestock illness, and, in several cases, killing children. Assistant Secretary of State Rand Beers intervened in the case right away telling the judge the lawsuit posed "a grave risk to US national security and foreign policy objectives."

In this regard, concerning the company's activities and alleged abuses in Colombia, an extensive accusation was presented against DynCorp at the Hearing on Biodiversity of the Permanent Peoples’ Tribunal, session on Colombia, which took place at the Cacarica Humanitarian Zone from February 24 to 27, 2007.[2] [3]

Sex Trafficking

What's more, Kathryn Bolkovac, a United Nations International Police Force monitor, filed a lawsuit in Britain in 2001 against DynCorp for firing her after she reported that Dyncorp police trainers in Bosnia were paying for prostitutes and participating in sex trafficking. Many of the Dyncorp employees were forced to resign under suspicion of illegal activity. But none were prosecuted, since they enjoy immunity from prosecution in Bosnia.

Earlier that year Ben Johnston, a DynCorp aircraft mechanic for Apache and Blackhawk helicopters in Kosovo, filed a lawsuit against his employer. The suit alleged that that in the latter part of 1999 Johnson "learned that employees and supervisors from DynCorp were engaging in perverse, illegal and inhumane behavior [and] were purchasing illegal weapons, women, forged passports and [participating in] other immoral acts."

The suit charges that "Johnston witnessed coworkers and supervisors literally buying and selling women for their own personal enjoyment, and employees would brag about the various ages and talents of the individual slaves they had purchased." "DynCorp is just as immoral and elite as possible, and any rule they can break they do," Johnston told Insight magazine. He charged that the company also billed the Army for unnecessary repairs and padded the payroll. "What they say in Bosnia is that DynCorp just needs a warm body -- that's the DynCorp slogan. Even if you don't do an eight-hour day, they'll sign you in for it because that's how they bill the government. It's a total fraud."

Iraq Fraud

In January 2007, the special inspector general for Iraq reconstruction, Stuart W. Bowen Jr., reported that "he had identified tens of millions of dollars worth of accounting discrepancies, missing weapons and unauthorized billings" by DynCorp. Bowen accused DynCorp of "lax accounting and monitoring procedures." [2]

At issue is a $43.8 million State Department contract "for a camp that was never used by police trainers," including $4.2 million that DynCorp billed for "unauthorized work." Another $36.4 million expenditure, intended "for weapons and equipment, including armored vehicles, body armor and communications equipment ... cannot be accounted for," reported the Dallas Morning News. [3]

Shortly after Bowen announced that his office would investigate DynCorp for fraud in its Iraq work, the company hired the PR firm Qorvis Communications for "messaging and image work," reported O'Dwyer's PR Daily. [4]

Lobbying Expenditures

Year Subsidiary (lobbied for) Amount Firm
1999 DynCorp Technical Services $20,000 Colex & Associates
2001 DynCorp Technical Services $40,000 Colex & Associates ($40K); Van Scoyoc Associates, Inc.
2002 DynCorp Technical Services $110,000 Van Scoyoc Associates, Inc. ($60K); Colex & Associates ($50K)
2003 DynCorp Aerospace Technology $20,000 Colex & Associates
2004 DynCorp Aerospace Technology $60,000 Colex & Associates

[5]

Contact Information

Website: http://www.dyncorp.com

Resources

Related SourceWatch articles

References

  1. "Enabling profit through the advanced use of technology", dyncorp-sucks.com via the Internet Archive. Archived June 22, 2003.
  2. "Accusation against the Transnational DynCorp," Permanent Peoples' Tribunal, February 2007.
  3. "Private Security Transnational Enterprises in Colombia" José Alvear Restrepo Lawyers' Collective, February, 2008.

External articles