The First Victims of America’s Mega-Embassy
Posted on Jul 27, 2007
According to the testimony of two American civilian contractors, the construction of the massive U.S. Embassy in Iraq involved the tacit abduction and abuse of migrant workers. One contractor testified that he was told to furtively escort a group of Filipinos onto a Baghdad-bound plane even though their tickets read “Dubai,” while another called working conditions at the $600-million project “deplorable.”
(via Boing Boing)
Testifying before the committee, John Owens, an American who worked for First Kuwaiti at the embassy site as a construction foreman, said he found living and working conditions for the foreign laborers “deplorable.” Because of difficulty hiring Iraqis inside the heavily fortified Green Zone, most laborers were from other countries.
Rory Mayberry, an emergency medical technician who worked briefly at the embassy site under a subcontract, testified that he was asked by First Kuwaiti managers to escort 51 Filipinos through the Kuwait airport and onto a flight to Baghdad. However, “all of our tickets said we were going to Dubai,” he said, adding that a First Kuwaiti manager told him not to tell the Filipinos they were going to Baghdad.