New Details Emerge in Salomi Hostage Case: High Drama in HTS
by John Stanton
Observers indicate that two individuals in HTS leadership positions on the ground in Iraq—Lieutenant Colonel Byrd (Program Management Office – FWD) and Michael Goains, GG-15 (Theater Coordination Element) had direct knowledge of Issa Salomi's prior forays outside Camp Liberty/Victory Base Complex in Iraq unaccompanied by his teammates (team designation IZ-02,) or US military personnel. Salomi was apparently taken by an Iraqi insurgent group in January 2010 and a video of him recently appeared in global media outlets in February 2010.
Observers have also pointed out that Salomi is not, in fact, a contractor but is instead a temporary US Army Civilian employee. In 2009, HTS reverted to a government program and contractors were forced to choose between leaving or converting to US government civilian status.
“There is so much drama within the HTS program right now that it is unbelievable. Many, many people are being fired, rearranged and moved around due to management incompetence and personality problems,” said observers. “The amount of money being squandered is ridiculous.”
One team leader (HTAT-B) was fired because of allegations of sexual harassment (a problem apparently not confined to HTS operations in Iraq and Afghanistan). Some members of his team quit because of his behavior. Some believe that he “literally looked at pictures and selected his incoming team members based on physical attractiveness.”
Another HTS employee was apparently fired because she was caught breaking into a building on the Victory Base Complex in the middle of the night looking for something to eat.
One Big Incestuous, Corrupt Family
A senior NCO (although reportedly married) is allegedly having an affair with a Human Terrain Analyst in Baghdad, Iraq (mimicking senior management one presumes). Apparently they have become quite adept at influencing military leadership. “One of them routinely denigrates social scientists she works with, and claims her six years of military intelligence (interrogations) background makes her more qualified than those with a PhD.”
Goains' wife is currently going through HTS training and will evidently be going to war with him in Baghdad as a Social Scientist for the TCE.
Goains evidently had the Knowledge Management Officer and IT Director in Iraq fired for unknown reasons. “There is now no IT/tech support for the people on the ground and this will most likely remain the case,” said sources. “This means that most of the reports that the teams are tasked with producing will never see the light of day outside Iraq. This is another monumental waste of taxpayer money.”
According to sources, the Knowledge Management (KM) Directorate is headed by Dan Wolfe, President/CEO of Universal Solutions, Inc (USAI) located in Virginia. The other contractor involved was Ascend Intelligence (recently purchased by General Dynamics C4 Systems (GDC4S). Bradley Green is the new Project Manager for GDC4S/HTS.
Observers allege that Wolfe redirects “a lot of program money to his own company.” For example, the SSRA work is contracted through him and then subcontracted to Glevum Associates, so Wolfe profits from that contract too Wolfe apparently advises Steve Fondacaro (HTS program manager) on all the IT & KM related matters.
Two Optia/MaxVision computer servers ($20,000 each) that were sent out to the field in 2009 were never even used by the HTS/HTT's. There is a rumor that Fondacaro's brother is involved with/owns the company that provided the Optia/MaxVision servers.
That story remains rumor but, given the track record with HTS, virtually anything is possible.
Corrections: CornerStone ref. in last article was incorrect. Career Stone is the proper name. Montgomery Clough was incorrect. Montgomery Carlough is the proper name.
John Stanton is a Virginia based writer specializing in national security and political matters. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Phi Beta Iota: Mr. Stanton is the most vocal and published critic of the HTT program. We publish his material with the view that his allegations merit thorough investigation. We continue to believe that HTT needs to become part of DIA/DH with a substantive change in management.