KBR recently announced a decision to ban employees from using cellphones in Iraq.? At the time of the announcement there was no reason given other than for “safety and security.” But now one potential reason has surfaced and it’s sick.? I don’t think the defense contracting company, which split for Halliburton in 2007 will cop to this being the reason, but there is ample evidence to suggest it’s directly related to employee Jamie Lee Jones and numerous rape allegations by female employees.
Jones was working in Iraq when she was gang-raped by her co-workers at KBR and held prisoner in a shipping container for several days.? She finally convinced one of her guards to loan her his cellphone so that she could call her father in Texas and get help.? KBR told her she would lose her job if she sought help in this matter.? Jones testified back in Dec. of 2007 about the affair.? Since then 11 different women have stepped forward to say they too had been raped by KBR co-workers.
I’m glad Jones had the courage to come forward, since that is difficult to do, but also it’s one of the only ways to put pressure on the company to prevent atrocities like this from happening in the future.? And though there is no direct evidence tying the cellphone ban to these incidents, one has to be curious about who’s security and safety KBR is trying to protect.? [Think Progress]