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$592 Million US Embassy In Baghdad Under Construction

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posted on Feb, 15 2006 @ 09:52 AM
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CorpWatch - Baghdad Embassy Bonanza by David Phinney

Kuwait Company’s Secret Contract & Low-Wage Labor

A controversial Kuwait-based construction firm accused of exploiting employees and coercing low-paid laborers to work in war-town Iraq is now building the new $592-million U.S. embassy in Baghdad. Once completed, the compound will likely be the biggest, most fortified diplomatic compound in the world.

Some 900 workers live and work for First Kuwaiti General Trading & Contracting (FKTC) on the construction site of the massive project. Undoubtedly, they have been largely pulled from ranks of low-paid laborers flooding into Iraq from Asia's poorest countries to work under U.S. military and reconstruction projects.

*snip*




Indeed, the massive $592-million project may be the most lasting monument to the U.S. occupation in the war-torn nation. Located on a on a 104-acre site on the Tigris river where U.S. and coalition authorities are headquartered, the high-tech palatial compound is envisioned as a totally self-sustaining cluster of 21 buildings reinforced to 2.5 times usual standards. Some walls as said to be 15 feet thick or more. Scheduled for completion by June 2007, the installation is touted as not only the largest, but the most secure diplomatic embassy in the world.

The 1,000 or more U.S. government officials calling the new compound home will have access to a gym, swimming pool, barber and beauty shops, a food court and a commissary. In addition to the main embassy buildings, there will be a large-scale Maine barracks, a school, locker rooms, a warehouse, a vehicle maintenance garage, and six apartment buildings with a total of 619 one-bedroom units. Water, electricity and sewage treatment plants will all be independent from Baghdad's city utilities. The total site will be two-thirds the area of the National Mall in Washington, DC.

Okey, Now that is some Serious "Embassy"!

Actually, it is a Super Bunker, Wired with the Recent High Technology and surveillance equipment and also the Biggest Embassy EVER built!

Problem is, that the Initial Costs was so sky high, that the Congress mmediately cut the price tag for the new Baghdad project in half to $592 - so I guess this is where the cheap day laborers paid just dollars a day come in, right?

Anyway, this Super-Embassy-Bunker-Complex sure looks like a Sign, that United States are to Stay in Iraq for a Long, LONG time...

mod edit to shorten lengthy cut and paste

[edit on 15-2-2006 by DontTreadOnMe]




posted on Feb, 15 2006 @ 10:25 AM
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That building is going to be under constant attack and those migrant Asian workers are going to be getting shot or getting their heads lopped off left and right. I guess those laborers are expendable.

We still can't get the coutry under control and now we're just going to drop a permanent symbol western might right in the capitol. That ought to make for some great threads.


Peace



posted on Feb, 15 2006 @ 11:58 AM
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Originally posted by Dr Love
That building is going to be under constant attack and those migrant Asian workers are going to be getting shot or getting their heads lopped off left and right. I guess those laborers are expendable.

Well, there is plenty of Third World Workers, which work for US Construction Corporations in Iraq, and they are the ones that get shot and killed without anybody of us knowing it - for a miserable pay, a few dollars. Yep - they are pretty much Expendable.



posted on Feb, 16 2006 @ 09:55 AM
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They also offer HUGE bonuses to Americans to get them out there, in excess of $50,000 in many cases.



posted on Feb, 18 2006 @ 08:21 AM
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I hope there's a helipad on the roof.



posted on Feb, 18 2006 @ 08:51 AM
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so I guess this is where the cheap day laborers paid just dollars a day come in, right?

Individual people are not hired. Companies are hired, Kuwaiti General Trading & Contracting (FKTC) in this case. So the welfare and salaries of the employees is upto the company, But in the end, it's still the US paying bottom dollar good labor workers.

It is pretty damn sick that FKTC pays them mere dollars a day for what would be top dollar pay in any western country. That's just wrong, IMO, but you gotta feed the family and they do a great job of taking advantage of that.



Anyway, this Super-Embassy-Bunker-Complex sure looks like a Sign, that United States are to Stay in Iraq for a Long, LONG time...

The fact that a US Embassy is being built in Iraq has nothing to do with any "long-term" plans to keep US troops in Iraq. The US has diplomtic missions all over the world in any country that have interest with

US Diplomatic Missions All Over The World



[edit on 18/2/2006 by SportyMB]



posted on Feb, 18 2006 @ 09:12 AM
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We need a Billion dollar embassy in Baghdad? No we don't.

We need sustainable agriculture, industry, affordable housing, and clean water/food in THIS country.

That money is being mis-spent, just like all the other money given to this corporately owned government.

I think if diplomats had less protection they might not be such dicks. Anyone read Bolton's, or Rummy's comments recently?
I have to be nice to everyone to avoid getting shot at (sometimes it doesn't work), because I don't have the American taxpayer footing the bill for my arrogant ways and reckless spending.

Bah...

It used to baffle me why the American taxpayers are so complacent in general, in Yemen or Indonesia they riot in the streets when gas prices go up a nickel; American taxpayers, on the other hand, slide down their pants and present pucker whenever one of these coporate stooges announces his intent to rape us. However, I learned not too long ago that more than half of Americans aren't able to read a food label or understand interest rates, or draw connections between editorials they've read, so that really explains the nature of the problem I think.

Obviously this cognitive disability is effecting the taxpayers' ability to tell Washington to get tossed. The front half is apparently not smart enough to realize what's happening to the hind quarters. That doesn't really change the blame structure much, everybody's responsible for their own actions (or lack thereof, as is the case here). It sure do paint our elected representatives in the light of hospital orderlies who molest and abuse the retarded folks in their care though, don't it.



Say hello to the cinematic incarnation of our government...



"My name is Buck, and I like to..."

[edit on 18-2-2006 by WyrdeOne]



posted on Feb, 18 2006 @ 09:25 AM
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Originally posted by SportyMB
Individual people are not hired. Companies are hired, Kuwaiti General Trading & Contracting (FKTC) in this case. So the welfare and salaries of the employees is upto the company, But in the end, it's still the US paying bottom dollar good labor workers.

I had a Topic some time ago, concering this problematics of so-called "third country nationals" (TCN), low-wage Asian laborers who are traveling to Iraq to work for US military contractors - and get to live in a Warzone in miserable conditions and inadequate safety.

Blood, Sweat & Tears: Asia’s Poor Build U.S. Bases in Iraq



The fact that a US Embassy is being built in Iraq has nothing to do with any "long-term" plans to keep US troops in Iraq. The US has diplomtic missions all over the world in any country that have interest with

Sorry, but I do think that building a half a Billion Embassy-Super-Bunker is clearly a Sign, that US interests in this Region are far from over.



posted on Feb, 18 2006 @ 09:39 AM
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I think if diplomats had less protection they might not be such dicks.

WyrdeOne. What do you mean? Who? That's a pretty broad statement.



Sorry, but I do think that building a half a Billion Embassy-Super-Bunker is clearly a Sign, that US interests in this Region are far from over.

I did'nt say US interest, I said troops. Even after US troops leave Iraq there will be an embassy and relations between the US and Iraq, just like almost every other country.

All recently/future built US embassies are being built as compounds. The stand alone embassy is a thing of past, I guess that's a lesson learned from Nairobi, Beirut and Saudi Arabia (2004).



posted on Feb, 18 2006 @ 10:11 AM
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Sporty

Government officials in general, if they didn't have exhorbitantly expensive security arrangements, subsidized by taxpayers, maybe they couldn't piss off the entire world and half their consituents without a second thought.

That's what I'm saying.

Think about it for a second. Are you more likely to be abusive, irresponsible, and insulting towards a group of people you don't respect, if you have a bullet proof partition between you and them?

If the POTUS and other leeches like him had to live among the people, he might start showing them due respect. Gated communities, impenetrable security, complete detachment from reality, these things foster dehumanization of the citizens in the eyes of the leaders, and as a result breed tyranny.



posted on Feb, 18 2006 @ 10:42 AM
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Government officials in general, if they didn't have exhorbitantly expensive security arrangements, subsidized by taxpayers, maybe they couldn't piss off the entire world and half their consituents without a second thought.

I agree, but it sounds to me like you are talking about the decision and policy makers. To say that US diplomats are "such dicks" is wrong. Most (95%) of US diplomats are nothing more than computer geeks, admin assistants, security personal, finance officers and general services officers (electricians, construction, etc...)



Think about it for a second. Are you more likely to be abusive, irresponsible, and insulting towards a group of people you don't respect, if you have a bullet proof partition between you and them?

Think about what you're saying. It's US property, it would only make since to fortify it to some degree that offers protection for not only the American employees, but also the FSN's (foreign service nationals) that work within the embassy. And with the exception of Cuba, most US embassies and consulates have probably about a 3-1 (or higher) FSN to American ratio. That's three locals to every American.

I'm not trying to justify the spending of half a billion USD on one compound. But there is a need for the extra security and "fort" style embassy in Iraq.

2004 Jeddah attack

1998 bombings of Dar es Salaam and Nairobi



[edit on 18/2/2006 by SportyMB]



posted on Feb, 18 2006 @ 11:30 AM
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Originally posted by SportyMB
All recently/future built US embassies are being built as compounds. The stand alone embassy is a thing of past,


That is correct.

Little to no attention (very little press) was given to the new US Embassy lands purchased and compound recently built in Armenia, and the new compound is open and currently scheduled for further expansion. The total land area purchased for the compound is 9 hectares, which currently makes it the largest US State Department land purchase abroad. The newest building is to have cost and estimated to US$70+ million.

Link w/quick info.

Direct Link To Armenian Embassy Mission (info)


Originally posted by WyrdeOne
It used to baffle me why the American taxpayers are so complacent in general
---(…)---
However, I learned not too long ago that more than half of Americans aren't able to read a food label or understand interest rates, or draw connections between editorials they've read, so that really explains the nature of the problem I think.


Perhaps in your attempts at insult, you are confusing Americans that actually pay taxes with Americans that do not pay or are the recipients of entitlements and refunds… if one does not pay, why care? You will more apt to probably find apathy in the lower 'paying/non-paying/refunded' percentiles than in the former.

According to the Office of Tax Analysis, the U.S. individual income tax is "highly progressive," with a small group of higher-income taxpayers paying most of the individual income taxes each year.
In 2002 the latest year of available data, the top 5 percent of taxpayers paid more than one-half (53.8 percent) of all individual income taxes, but reported roughly one-third (30.6 percent) of income.
---(…)---
Taxpayers who rank in the top 50 percent of taxpayers by income pay virtually all individual income taxes. In all years since 1990, taxpayers in this group have paid over 94 percent of all individual income taxes. In 2000, 2001, and 2002, this group paid over 96 percent of the total.

Source: U.S. Treasury, Office of Tax Analysis

Above Article Link

I know not much has changed as of 2002.

mg



posted on Feb, 18 2006 @ 04:43 PM
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I agree, but it sounds to me like you are talking about the decision and policy makers. To say that US diplomats are "such dicks" is wrong. Most (95%) of US diplomats are nothing more than computer geeks, admin assistants, security personal, finance officers and general services officers (electricians, construction, etc...)


My point was NOT that all diplomats are dicks. Obviously that's not the case, no group that large is homogenous. In any case, I thought my point was clear, sorry it wasn't. The point is, people who are supposed to be diplomats, that is to say negotiators, statesmen, and the face of our country in foreign lands, they would be better served if they had to actually live in the countries they're in, rather than in gigantic, fortress compounds costing hundreds of millions of dollars.

That's not an ambassador, as far as I'm concerned. I sure as Hell wouldn't like it if some foreign nation set up a freakin' land-based death star in my back yard and then proceeded to manipulate my town's affairs from the safety behind the walls. Jesus set a wonderful example, when it came to being an ambassador - take nothing with you, rely entirely on the kindness of your hosts, and if they are not receptive to the message you're bringing, leave them to do as they please.


That's an ambassador. That's strength. That's effective. (Yes, it's also dangerous, but so is rock climbing, or hang gliding, and there are plenty of crazy people looking for interesting work. Why not indulge their passion for adventure and save a billion dollars?)

As far as I'm concerned it's the only way to do things; from a practical and philosophical standpoint, there simply isn't a more elegant solution to winning over a population than to simply go amongst them on foot, unarmed, vulnerable. The only way you can pull it off is preaching a message of peace.
That's a little hint on the larger point I'm trying to make.

Contemporary American foreign policy makes an ambasadorship about as appealing as a job at Port Chicago circa 1944, if you wanna talk about powder kegs. In my mind, diplomacy is not the same thing as military occupation. Building an enormous, foritified fire base in a sovereign nation's capitol, you can call it whatever you want, but it doesn't change the reality of the situation.



It's US property, it would only make since to fortify it to some degree that offers protection for not only the American employees, but also the FSN's (foreign service nationals) that work within the embassy. And with the exception of Cuba, most US embassies and consulates have probably about a 3-1 (or higher) FSN to American ratio. That's three locals to every American.


A standard office building would be sufficient if the people occupying it weren't under constant seige by groups resisting the occupation with terrorism. Look at WW2, in France, Hitler could have fortified till he was blue in the face, but it wouldn't have changed the reality of the resistance. Ingenuity is what drives any resistance effort. This can be seen dramatically in the evolving tactics of the Iraqi insurgents.

You don't win by digging in and putting up walls, you win by making the option of violence less appealing than dialogue and diplomacy. Again, this only works if you're motives are sound and your position defensible (not the firebase, the ideology). Market research shows blatant American exceptionalism and imperialistic resource grabs test low with Iraqi voters.




Perhaps in your attempts at insult, you are confusing Americans that actually pay taxes with Americans that do not pay or are the recipients of entitlements and refunds… if one does not pay, why care? You will more apt to probably find apathy in the lower 'paying/non-paying/refunded' percentiles than in the former.


It wasn't intended as an insult, just a matter of fact statement about the relationship of twin national disgraces - bottom of the barrel literacy and citizen apathy. Regardless, the upper 5% who contribute so much also benefit the most from corporately influenced shill governance, so they're not exactly sympathetic figures.





[edit on 18-2-2006 by WyrdeOne]



posted on Feb, 18 2006 @ 05:37 PM
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Originally posted by WyrdeOne
It wasn't intended as an insult, just a matter of fact statement about the relationship of twin national disgraces - bottom of the barrel literacy and citizen apathy.


I hear you….thanks for the clarification, but I was drawn to the comparison about the ‘American taxpayers’; the picture you painted was as if your ‘twin national disgraces’ cut across the same demographic…I don’t equate the two.

Perhaps I should have inserted (average voter/non-voter), agreed and then moved on….


Originally posted by WyrdeOne
It used to baffle me why the American taxpayers are so complacent in general.....
---(…)---
....American taxpayers, on the other hand, slide down their pants and present pucker whenever one of these coporate stooges announces his intent to rape us.


mg



posted on Feb, 20 2006 @ 12:40 AM
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they would be better served if they had to actually live in the countries they're in, rather than in gigantic, fortress compounds costing hundreds of millions of dollars.

They do. Ofcourse Iraq and a few other places are exceptions. Most US diplomats live and socialize with the local community and work a 9-5 at the embassy/consulate. The future US embassy in Iraq cannot be compared to all other US embassies and consulates, it's one of a kind.




A standard office building would be sufficient if the people occupying it weren't under constant seige by groups resisting the occupation with terrorism.

True...true

Another reason why the Dept. of State is switching to the compund design other than security and the need for "stand-off space" between the embassy and the outer perimeter is to have everything in one location.

Many current embassies have buidlings, offices and everything else you can think of scattered all over the city. The motorpool, eletric/gas facilities, gym, auditorium, health offices, and other agencies such as USAID (which is a large operation and agency) etc...etc... can all be in the same location and not have to worry about leasing 5 different buidlings and or entire hotel floors to use as office and work space.


MoT

posted on Feb, 20 2006 @ 06:58 PM
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and you belive that those 592 mil. will go into the embassy ONLY ? where as it was supposed to be a billion ... u can build a city with that much money and the best part is that the US could easily handle their diplomatic issues from any neighboring country.... i dont know whats the real deal but surely not just an embassy... thats lame



posted on Feb, 20 2006 @ 08:17 PM
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That must be some BIG embassy, They must be expecting it to last a very long time...otherwise, that number is rediculously high.

Any renderings of it? For that price its either really big, or really high tech....or both.



posted on Feb, 20 2006 @ 08:27 PM
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But they have democarcy! Doesn't that mean flowers immediately bloom and everyone loves each other? Why do you need to spend 200million dollars on a bunker, with 300million going into the pockets of Haliburton, in such a peaceful lovly place like Iraq?

Unless this building is built with Golden Blocks and Diamond WIndows this is a way thr Republicans stick it to the people.

"Gee, we just cut 500million dollars from Student loans, now how can we waste it?"



posted on Feb, 20 2006 @ 09:04 PM
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Originally posted by DevinS
But they have democarcy! Doesn't that mean flowers immediately bloom and everyone loves each other? Why do you need to spend 200million dollars on a bunker, with 300million going into the pockets of Haliburton, in such a peaceful lovly place like Iraq?

Haliburton is an old issue...but hey, If your a left wing nutjob...anything goes.



posted on Feb, 20 2006 @ 09:10 PM
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Oh, so that 1.1 Trillion dollars that just "dissapeared" was stolen by terrorists? It goes taxpayer, republicans, Pentagon, Haliburton.... then just poofs away. Wonder how many of the CEOs got new cars and mansions.



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