Skip to comments.Pentagon's 'Dragon lady' But now sentenced to prison for favouring Boeing over Lockheed
Posted on 10/10/2004 1:09:16 PM PDT by familyop
Isn't Tom Duschellhound's wife a lobbyist for Boeing??
...different perspective and title overseas, no? We missed a major part of the real story, but the folks in Singapore didn't.
Disgusting!...Glad she was caught.
$4 billion is a pretty big bribe to protect your daughter's job.
This will send Boeing even further down the tubes, IMHO. It was a great airplane company in the old days.
Wonder if she'll be sharing a cell with nartha stewart?
No checks & balances No accountability.....encourages criminal behavior
Jail her and those who conspired with her
Will she go to Camp Cupcake, the resort "prison," with Martha Stewart?
There will be a million new rules for the "little people" to follow as a result of her stupidity.
The question is why only 9 months for costing us taxpayers billions of dollars?
Not if Stewart's luck holds out.
October 28, 2003
Fill 'er up
DefenseTech: NEW SCRUTINY FOR BOEING DEAL
DefenseTech points out two op-eds about the plan to lease Boeing 767 tankers for the Air Force.
David Brooks of the NYT notes
The chief Air Force official pushing the deal was Darleen Druyun. As The Washington Post reported yesterday, Druyun has recently left the Air Force and gone to work for Boeing. She sold her $692,000 northern Virginia home to a Boeing lawyer. Her daughter works for Boeing. None of this may be illegal or even wrong, but is this what makes you proud to be an American?
First, this whole mess started because the Air Force can't pay for new tankers up front, so it tried to push back the costs by leasing. Maybe it's time to stop trying to run a Bush foreign policy on a Clinton defense budget?
Yesterday the WaPo ran a large piece on the proposed deal.
In December 2001, language authorizing the deal -- but providing no money -- emerged in legislation in what Hill veterans refer to as a "virgin birth," meaning it was inserted into the defense appropriations bill after the bill had passed the House and Senate, during closed negotiations between conferees. It was then approved on the House and Senate floors as part of a compromise bill.
Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Ted Stevens (R-Alaska), a longtime supporter of expanding federal leasing, has claimed credit for inserting the language. One month before he did so, he received $21,900 in campaign contributions from 31 Boeing executives at a fundraiser in Seattle, where Boeing has many employees.
30 of those 31 had not contributed to Mr. Stevens within the past 10 years. And Darleen Druyun? Get a load of this:
After the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, Boeing pressed the idea with new vigor. Airlines had deferred commercial orders for 767s, and Boeing laid off thousands of employees at plants in Everett, Wash. But the Air Force had not even listed tankers among its "unfunded priorities" in 2001, a multibillion-dollar wish list of weapons it wanted but could not afford. The Air Force had no money to buy the tankers, so on Sept. 25, 2001, the company's top executives met with Darleen A. Druyun, then a senior Air Force acquisitions officer, at the Pentagon to work out a lease deal instead.
Druyun agreed at the meeting, according to notes taken by Boeing, not only to promote the leasing idea on Capitol Hill but also to find needed money by cutting back a comparatively inexpensive modernization program for existing tankers -- an arrangement, Boeing and the Air Force have acknowledged, that will retire flightworthy tankers early to procure new ones.
(Emphasis mine) Is there ANYTHING about this deal that doesn't stink? I've been skeptical of the actual NEED for new tankers, but readers will recognize that I'm all for making sure our military has the hardware it need to fight this war. The plan to cut back maintenance of the existing tankers, though, is a clear signal that new tankers aren't needed. At least not as soon as lease-backers would have us believe.
In November 2001, the Air Force drafted a document spelling out what capabilities the new tankers must have. Col. Mark Donohue, an official in the air mobility office, promptly sent it to Boeing for private comment, and the company sought, and received, concessions so the requirements matched what the 767 could do. The Air Force agreed to drop a demand that the new tankers match or exceed the capabilities of the old ones.
I've heard this before, but it's never been clear what that specification was.
Asked a month ago about Boeing's travails, [President] Bush spoke about trying to "help the worker, help the economy" by funding the construction of new planes. About the tanker leasing deal, he said, "I think it's going to go through."
How does overspending for something that you don't need "help the economy"? It helps Boeing, for sure, and helps THOSE workers, but isn't cutting taxes then turning around and squandering what's left just a little ludicrous?
If we really need tankers, buy them. Make some hard decisions. And I don't have a problem buying from Boeing, even if AirBus had a slightly better offer. If we're going to spend, we should spend in America unless it's stupid to do so. But first we need to be sure we really need to spend. We could sure buy a lot of Interceptor body armor for $5.6 billion.
Posted by murdoc at October 28, 2003 01:08 PM | Military & Defense
Does she get to keep her pension?
Disgusting. Up against the wall, shoot her, invoice the daughter for the bullet.
Let's hope so. Boeing has a duty to its shareholders to compete tooth-and-nail for government business, but Boeing also has a duty to the customer, the taxpayer and to itself, to deal honestly when it deals with government. I hope the executives that were complicit in this deal are charged appropriately.
The cost to the government will be in the millions, the cost to the losing contractors was in the 10's of millions, and re-opening any contracts will mean our defense forces get necessary equipment late.
January 7, 2003
The Godmother of Boeing Makes a Soft Landing
By JEFFREY ST. CLAIR
Darleen Druyun proudly calls herself the Godmother of the C-17, the unwieldy transport plane that will be doing much of the heavy lifting during the roll up to Bush's war on Iraq. The plane's performance has gotten mixed reviews, but as chief acquisitions officer at the Air Force Druyun pushed relentlessly to have more of those cargo planes bought and at a premium price. As a kicker, Druyun drafted a quaint provision that would have inoculated the C-17 contract from any pesky government oversight over the likely runaway costs of the program. By the way, the C-17 is made by Boeing.
Druyun's unceasing efforts at the Pentagon to push this sweetheart deal on behalf of Boeing eventually prompted an internal investigation by the Defense Department's Inspector General and even aroused a rare public rebuke from Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld.
Druyun recently left the Pentagon, but now she has made a soft landing at the very company she had labored for so zealously in public office: Boeing.
In a January 3 company press release, Boeing executives gloated that Druyun will head up the company's missile defense division headquartered in Washington, DC. This is one of the more plum positions in town. Boeing is the prime contractor for what the Pentagon calls the Ground-based Midcourse Defense Segment and serves as the lead contractor for the Missile Defense National Team's Systems Engineering and Integration program. These contracts have already generated billions in revenues for Boeing, but much more is on the way. The company expects to do a brisk business now that Bush has officially jettisoned the ABM Treaty and given the greenlight for the rapid deployment of the latest version of the Star Wars scheme. Druyun's duties at Boeing will also include hawking the Airborne Laser program and the Patriot anti-missile system, which seems likely to get another big boost in sales to Israel and Kuwait with the upcoming war on Iraq.
"Darleen Druyun helped drive acquisition reform within the Air Force," said James Evatt, Boeing's senior vice-president for its Defense programs. "Her 'Lightning Bolt' initiatives, which jump-started the reform process. Her personal passion and drive are well known within the defense industry, and we expect her to be a key player in our future success."
Pentagon watchdogs have a somewhat different recollection of Druyun's tenure at the Air Force. They say that the Godmother's initiatives favored the defense contractors, while looting the treasury and putting Air Force pilots in relatively untested and even unsafe planes. The C-17 affair is perhaps the most brazen example of her labors on behalf of the weapons lobby.
In 1990, Congress approved an Air Force plan to buy 120 C-17s from Boeing for $230 million apiece. That contract runs out later this year. In the fall of 2000, the Air Force said it wanted another 60 planes. But Boeing wanted to sell them many more. And they engaged in a bit of blackmail to get their way. Boeing officials claimed that they couldn't afford to keep the C- 17 in production unless they built a minimum of 15 planes each year. Yet, the even the Air Force admitted it didn't need that many planes. And the General Accounting Office contends that the Air Force actually only requires about 100 heavy transport planes, 20 fewer than it has already got. With other big ticket items like the F-22 and the Joint Strike Force Fighter on the Air Force's wish list, the C-17 seemed unlikely to survive congressional scrutiny.
So a plan was hatched to make the new fleet of planes quasi-private. Under this scenario, some of the C-17s would essentially be rented out to private haulers, who would then be in a position to receive financial kickbacks for using the aircraft. According to Pentagon sources, the idea to reclassify the C-17 contract from a military to a commercial project originated with Boeing. It's not hard to figure out what office they went to with the idea. This scheme contained another nifty prize for Boeing. By reclassifying the deal as a commercial operation, it alleviated many of the detailed reporting requirements that go along with defense contracts.
Druyun seized on the idea and wrapped the program in the then ripe rhetoric of the Clinton/Gore reinventing government scheme. "This program is very appealing to all parties involved: the Air Force, the commercial operators, the manufacturers and the American taxpayer," Druyun boasted in December of 2000. In a sign of things to come, this quote appeared in a Boeing press release.
Druyun also raved that the new contract would enable Boeing to employ "streamlined processes" in the production of the plane--never a welcome sign when it comes to building military aircraft, at least from the pilot's point of view.
All this prompted the Pentagon's chief testing official to object the plan as a potentially hazardous operation. "Policies and procedures flowing from the push toward commercial acquisition are leading the C-17 down a risky path," wrote Philip Coyle, then director of the Defense Department's Operational Test and Evaluation Division. "A lack of fiscal, technical, and testing realism may be creating fleets that cannot meet effectiveness, sustainability, or interoperability requirements."
After the scheme was exposed by the Project on Government Oversight and by a subsequent report in CounterPunch, the C-17 plan fell apart. When the dust finally settled, Druyun cashed in her chips with Boeing. Now she's stalking bigger game: missile defense, a multi-billion dollar bonanza for defense contractors, with Boeing at the head of the trough.
"Ms. Druyun is now officially an employee of the company whose interests she so ardently championed while she was supposedly representing the interests of the taxpayers," says Danielle Brian, executive director of the Project on Government Oversight. "This is one of the most egregious examples of the government revolving door in recent memory."
Of course, plucking operatives from the halls of the Pentagon is nothing new for Boeing. Over the years, the company has festooned its corporate board and the halls of its lobby shop with a bevy of top brass.
Recently, Boeing's board has boasted both former Defense Secretary William Perry and John M. Shalikashvili, the former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. In 2001, Boeing also hired Rudy de Leon, Clinton's Deputy Secretary of Defense, to run its Washington office. Although De Leon is known as a proud hawk and a masterful dealmaker, his hiring may have been a rare misstep for Boeing, since congressional Republicans howled that the company should have picked one of their own from the Pentagon's rolls.
But by adding the Godmother of the C-17 to the company's DC hangar, the defense contractor seems to be well on the road toward making amends and, naturally, fattening Boeing's bottom line courtesy of the federal treasury.
Jeffrey St. Clair can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Here's the beauty.
My new favorite Congressman, Christopher Shays, is now requesting Sarbanes-Oxley accountability for agencies such as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mae.
If this catches on (and it will if Bush gets another term), all government agencies will have to be monitored under these laws and more largesse and corruption will be exposed.
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