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A little-noticed civil lawsuit in Florida is shining a light on an unusual but hugely profitable Pentagon contract to ship millions of gallons of aviation fuel to U.S. bases in Iraq through the kingdom of Jordan.
The deal involves a cast of influential characters, including the king of Jordan’s brother-in-law, who is suing Harry Sargeant III, a top Florida-based fundraiser for Sen. John McCain’s presidential bid.
Sargeant is a Florida businessman and former Marine Corps pilot hailed by the McCain campaign as a “Trailblazer” for raising $100,000 or more in political donations. Through a company called International Oil Trading Co., or IOTC, Sargeant and a partner have a lucrative contract worth hundreds of millions of dollars per year to supply American military forces in Iraq with fuel, especially aviation fuel.
More from Ken Silverstein:
Perspective — October 23, 2013, 8:00 am
How pro-oil Louisiana politicians have shaped American environmental policy
Postcard — October 16, 2013, 8:00 am
A trip to one of the properties at issue in Louisiana’s oil-pollution lawsuits
Acres of hemp grown by “patriotic‚” U.S. farmers in 1942 at the behest of the U.S. government:
A study suggested that the health effects of exposure to nuclear radiation at Chernobyl were no worse than ill health resulting from smoking and normal urban air pollution.
Greenpeace apologized after activists accidentally defaced the site of Peru’s 2,000-year-old Nazca Lines when they unfurled cloth letters reading “time for change” near the ancient sand drawings. “We fully understand,” the group wrote in a statement, “that this looks bad.”
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“I hope that after reading the following pages the leaders of the Y. M. C. A. will start a campaign to induce good young men to do nothing. If so, I shall not have lived in vain.”