How to Launder Foreign Aid

In early 2008, the company for which I was working won a small contract to manage the airport in Monrovia, Liberia.  Before the Liberian civil war, Roberts Field had a storied history. Along with being Pan American Airlines’ main African station for many decades, aircraft from the U.S. Army Air Corps harassed and attacked the southern flank of Field Marshall Erwin Rommel’s Afrika Korps.  The PanAm station chief ran the remote 5,000-acre airport and a Motel 6-like facility on the Farmington River, adjacent to the Firestone Plantation.  For their transient aircrew, Pan Am had a two-story hotel on the beach with a bar and grille where fresh lobster, fish, and shrimp were caught daily.  PanAm’s Boeing 707s and 747s stopped for fuel, food prepared by French chefs, or engine changes before traveling to South Africa or the Middle East.  Roberts Field had the longest runway in Africa and served as a Space Shuttle emergency landing strip. Fifteen...(Read Full Article)
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