|IRAQ: Big Oil Ready for Big Gamble in Iraq|
by Gina Chon, Wall Street Journal
June 24th, 2009
Next week, Iraqi officials will auction off oil contracts to foreign companies for the first time since Iraq nationalized its oil industry three decades ago. Some 120 companies expressed interest in bidding for the contracts, and thirty-five companies qualified. They include Exxon Mobil Corp., Royal Dutch Shell PLC, Italy's Eni SpA, Russia's Lukoil and China Petroleum & Chemical Corp., or Sinopec.
|IRAN: Iran's Web Spying Aided By Western Technology |
by Christopher Rhoads and Loretta Chao, Wall Street Journal
June 22nd, 2009
The Iranian regime has developed one of the world's most sophisticated mechanisms for controlling and censoring the Internet. The Iranian government appears to be engaging in a practice often called deep packet inspection. The monitoring capability was provided, at least in part, by a joint venture of Siemens AG, the German conglomerate, and Nokia Corp., the Finnish cellphone company.
|Is Halliburton Forgiven and Forgotten? Or How to Stay Out of Sight While Profiting From the War in Iraq|
by Pratap Chatterjee, TomDispatch.com
June 3rd, 2009
At Halliburton's recent annual shareholders meeting in Houston, all was remarkably staid as the company celebrated its $4 billion in 2008 operating profits, a striking 22% return at a time when many companies are announcing record losses.
Just three months ago, however, Halliburton didn't hesitate to pay $382 million in fines to the U.S. Department of Justice as part of the settlement of a controversial KBR gas project in Nigeria in which the company admitted to paying a $180 million bribe to government officials.
|US: Contractors Vie for Plum Work, Hacking for U.S. Government|
by CHRISTOPHER DREW and JOHN MARKOFF, New York Times
May 30th, 2009
The Obama administration’s push into cyberwarfare has set off a rush among the biggest military companies for billions of dollars in new defense contracts. Nearly all of the largest military companies — including Northrop Grumman, General Dynamics, Lockheed Martin and Raytheon — have major cyber contracts with the military and intelligence agencies.
|US: Chevron annual meeting heats up over Ecuador suit|
by Jordan Robertson, Washington Post
May 27th, 2009
In a combative and sometimes colorful annual meeting, Chevron's CEO and chairman exchanged barbs with activists over pollution in the Amazon rain forest and the company's human rights record. The nation's second-largest oil company is awaiting a verdict from a judge in Ecuador that could come with a $27 billion price tag.
|US: U.S. Cracks Down on Corporate Bribes|
by DIONNE SEARCEY, Wall Street Journal
May 26th, 2009
The Justice Department is increasing its prosecutions of alleged acts of foreign bribery by U.S. corporations, forcing them to take costly steps to defend against scrutiny. The crackdown under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, or FCPA -- a post-Watergate law largely dormant for decades -- now extends across five continents and penetrates entire industries.
|The True Cost of Chevron: An Alternative Annual Report|
by Antonia Juhasz, http://www.TrueCostofChevron.com/
May 26th, 2009
Chevron's 2008 annual report is a glossy celebration of the company's most profitable year in its history. What Chevron's annual report does not tell its shareholders is the true cost paid for those financial returns, or the global movement gaining voice and strength against the company's abuses. This jointly-produced report documents negative impacts of Chevron's operations around the globe, in stark contrast to the message sent by the company's ubiquitous "Human Energy" advertising campaign.
|FRANCE/UAE: Gulf base shows shift in France’s focus|
by Ben Hall and Andrew England, Financial Times
May 25th, 2009
France's new naval base in Abu Dhabi, its first overseas military base in 50 years, has sparked a round of lobbying on behalf of lucrative business for French companies including Dassault, the military aircraft maker, and a consortium of Total, GdF-Suez and Areva, which is bidding to build two nuclear power stations in the UAE. Dassault is hoping to sell as many as 60 of its Rafale fighters to the UAE.
|Mexico’s Other Crisis: Foreign Banks|
by Kent Paterson, Special to CorpWatch
May 15th, 2009
The worldwide financial crisis is hitting people in the Global South with particular venom, and disaster profiteering is alive and well. Take Mexico. While entities like Citigroup-owned Banamex get away with charging Mexican credit account-holders usurious interest rates of up to 100 percent, Banamex itself turned nearly $1 billion in profits in 2008.