October 08, 2007

Hmmmm…. This story about the fire-sprinkler system not working at the $597 million US embassy in Iraq is getting some circulation, but the headline buries the real news. Well, yes, the electrical system doesn’t exactly work, either: when the kitchens were tested, all the wiring melted down. I guess that’s how they found out the fire-sprinkler system didn’t work. It seems the company contracted to do the work—“Kuwaiti First”—‘used counterfeit electrical wiring that did not meet specifications.” Okay, but here’s the icing on the cake:

“One-time aides to [State Department Inspector General Howard] Krongard, including former Assistant Inspector General for Investigations John DeDona, have told Congress that the inspector general did not pursue allegations that First Kuwaiti failed to construct blast-resistant walls to protect the embassy, as required by its contract.”

That embassy is a sitting duck. It’s another Beirut, 1983, just waiting to happen. Ronald Reagan was wise enough to get out of that particular hornets nest. Neither this president, nor the next, will have the decisiveness to follow his good example.


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