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Home / US / As part of an effort to turn Trump's offer against Amazon for a $ 10 billion contract

As part of an effort to turn Trump's offer against Amazon for a $ 10 billion contract



White House officials have released a document to Trump over the last few weeks suggesting a major conspiracy to award a $ 10 billion 10-year contract to build the Pentagon's cloud computing network. The document received from CNN is identical to that produced by Kenneth Glueck, an executive vice president of the company, Oracle's leading lobbyist in Washington.

The unilateral document was presented to Trump along with other information in a meeting last week that discussed the contract and the potential award by Amazon, sources said. It is unclear how the document made it to the White House.

Amazon declined to comment on this article.

READ: Amazon executives beat Oracle and Microsoft as the cloud wars warm. and consultants who work on behalf of Amazon and bring them together in a variety of business and professional relationships. The version, which was shown to the president, contains photos of the two previous defense ministers, Ash Carter (next to President Obama) and Trump's former Secretary of Defense James Mattis.

With images of dollar signs, arrows, and a heart that connects the various numbers, the graphic leaves the overall impression of corruption and conflict of interest. An enlarged copy of the map can be seen from the street, located in Glueck's window in the office on K Street in downtown Washington, DC. The diagram is rich in graphics and allusions, but there is no specific charge of misconduct.

  Oracle's office in Washington, DC prominently displays a flowchart of the alleged conspiracy on Amazon Web Services. Bid for the Pentagon cloud computing contract.

Many of the implicit and explicit allegations have been resolved by an internal Pentagon investigation or in court litigation by Oracle before a federal court. They were also not classified as problematic.

In recent weeks, the President has expressed concerns about the JEDI contract and the administration will review the matter. The decision to re-examine the contract ultimately lies with the Secretary of Defense.

Asked by a reporter about the contract during a performance by the Dutch Prime Minister at the Oval Office on July 18, Trump said he had "received tremendous complaints about the Pentagon and Amazon contracts, including Microsoft, Oracle and IBM ,

"Big companies complain about it," said Trump. "So we'll take a look at it, we'll look at it very closely."
On July 22 Trump tweeted back a Fox News segment and criticized the JEDI contract as "The Bezos Bailout." It's not clear whether the President has the Oracle document by then has seen.

While it would be highly unusual for a president to intervene in awarding a major government mandate, during Trump's tenure, companies have learned that appealingly, he can contribute personally to securing his attention.

He has also talked to senators about the deal, while other members of the congress have written to him in writing in support of as well as against the Amazon.

Trump has blown up Bezos and Amazon on a regular basis, claiming the company is not paying enough taxes and using the US Postal Service to expand its business. Bezos also owns the Washington Post, which Trump has repeatedly labeled as unfair to him and his government.

Oracle maintains a close relationship with the Trump administration. The company's CEO, Safra Catz, served on Trump's transition team, had dinner at the White House, and was once considered for a position in the administration. According to a person with direct knowledge, officials who work for Oracle were sighted in the West Wing only last month.

Glueck tells CNN that neither he nor anyone else at Oracle, including Catz, has handed over his file to the White House and that he does not know how it landed on the President's desk. He has spread the card widely and distributed it to other lobbyists and journalists. "I'm not mad that it's in front of him," said Luck.

The White House did not respond to requests for comments.

Oracle Anti-Amazon Push

Oracle's flowchart is part of a month-long effort to disrupt the JEDI contract and undercut Amazon, which is widely regarded as the frontrunner in the bid.

Amazon and Microsoft are both finalists for JEDI, which could be awarded on August 23, according to a Pentagon source Claiming that the rival has an unfair advantage due to Amazon's close ties within the department. This lawsuit was rejected by a federal judge last month.

A source close to the White House says the president mentioned to other White House officials that he had revised the JEDI treaty. "Trump wants to interrupt this process and possibly reopen it with additional crash barriers," the source told CNN.

According to the source, a White House intervention in the JEDI bidding process could be an important first test for Trump's recently sworn Secretary of Defense Mark Esper, who announced this week that he would review the treaty.

I've heard about JEDI Cloud from everyone, that's one of the things I'll take a closer look at, "Esper told reporters at the Pentagon on Wednesday.

" Trump has also featured in other deals Special Business anything with Amazon and Bezos and the Washington Post … could end up at Esper's desk, "said the source near the White House.

Completing the JEDI contract is a top priority for Amazon, and decisions are made in the Program links are made at the company's highest level, sources in CNN Information show, and since 2013, Amazon Web Services (AWS) has been running the Central Intelligence Agency's cloud network.

AWS is the most profitable branch of Amazon and makes According to a company report on Thursday, 12 percent of total revenue in the last quarter, AWS revenue increased 37 percent year-over-year to US $ 8.3 billion Amazon's cloud segment has become an important part of its success, especially given the growing political and antitrust oversight of its e-commerce business.

Amazon officials were well aware of Oracle's efforts to undercut its offer in recent months. Many within the company attempted to bring the award process to a late halt.

Capitol Hill weighs

Some Republicans in Congress encouraged the government to rethink the JEDI treaty. Wisconsin senators Ron Johnson and Florida Florida Marco Rubio have written separate letters to the Pentagon expressing concern over the continuation of the treaty. Two weeks ago, Trump even talked to Johnson about JEDI on an Air Force One flight to Wisconsin, according to the Senator's office.

According to a Rubio spokesman, Trump also called Rubio earlier this month to report his concerns over the contract. Trump pointed out that, if necessary, he could participate in preventing the award of the contract.

On July 23, a dozen legislators of the Republican House sent Trump a letter requesting that he postpone the award of the JEDI treaty. The letter, first published by Axios, states that the award of the contract would be "premature," as the Pentagon Inspectorate of Inspectorates "is still investigating potential conflicts of interest for DoD staff when awarding the JEDI contract."

The same day, Dana Deasy, the Department of Defense's chief information officer, responded to Johnson's request to postpone the award until the Inspector General's office completed his investigation, according to a letter from CNN. Deasy wrote that he would ensure that Pentagon officials consult with the IG Office before the award decision is finalized.

Defense Ministry spokeswoman Elissa Smith said that an internal conflict of interest investigation found there were no disadvantages "to the JEDI acquisition process, but Smith said that there were potential (and unspecified) ethical violations revealed by the investigation, were referred to the Inspector General of the Pentagon, this office is currently reviewing these allegations.

  Florida MP Matt Gaetz

[19659013] Only one of the 12 signatories to the House letter, Florida GOP MP Matt Gaetz, sits in the Armed Forces Committee overseeing the Pentagon, and not all Hill Republicans agree … Last week, four GOP colleagues from Gaetz sent including a senior member of Texas Rep. Mac Thornberry, a letter to Trump calling on him to "cancel the JEDI contract" as quickly as possible e possible to forgive and implement ". [19659007] Texas Rep. Mac Thornberry "src-mini =" // cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/170522192221-thornberry-1-small-169.jpg "src-xsmall =" // cdn.cnn .com / cnnnext / dam / assets / 170522192221-thornberry-1-medium-plus-169.jpg "src-small =" http://cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/170522192221-thornberry-1- large-169.jpg "src-medium =" // cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/170522192221-thornberry-1-exlarge-169.jpg "src-large =" // cdn.cnn.com/ cnnnext / dam / assets / 170522192221-thornberry-1-super-169.jpg "src-full16x9 =" // cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/170522192221-thornberry-1-full-169.jpg "src -mini1x1 = "// cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/170522192221-thornberry-1-small-11.jpg" data-demand-load = "not-loaded" data-eq-pts = "mini: 0, xsmall: 221, small: 308, medium: 461, large: 781 "/>

" Our committee has this contract from Monitored at the beginning. As you know, the courts have confirmed the conduct of the contest by DoD. Although it is understandable that some of the companies competing for the contract are disappointed that they have not been selected as finalists, further delays will only affect our safety and increase the cost of the contract, "reads the letter.

JEDI Under Mattis

The idea that the Pentagon has its own commercial cloud system had spread throughout the department since the Obama administration, but the formal project did not set in until after Mattis was launched He made a trip to the West Coast where he visited the headquarters of Google and Amazon in August 2017. According to two former Pentagon officials, Mattis, initially skeptical of the idea, returned to Washington and was convinced that the Pentagon was a cloud of its own

  Former Secretary of Defense James Mattis

This fall, the Pentagon announced plans to solicit private enterprise deals to build a massive cloud computing system for the entire Department of Defense. Four of the top five cloud computing companies, Amazon, IBM, Oracle and Microsoft, made offers. Google does not have.

The focus of Oracle's allegations is that the Pentagon was led by Trump's first Secretary of Defense Mattis to choose Amazon. Mattis had a high profile meeting with Bezos during his trip in August 2017 to the Amazon headquarters in Seattle. One of Mattis' top consultants, Sally Donnelly, ranked Amazon Web Services among their clients at their national security consulting firm SBD Advisors.

Donnelly sold the company when she joined Mattis at the Pentagon in January 2017. Since then she has left the Pentagon and founded a similar consulting firm, Pallas Advisors.

According to the US Ethics Board, Donnelly announced her earlier work for Amazon when she started working at the Pentagon. "No staff in the front office of the Minister of Defense was involved in drawing up the requirements or the request, and any claim or any suggestion to the contrary is wrong," the ministry said in a previous statement.

Two Former Pentagon Officials Knowing Donnelly, as Mattis' senior adviser, has not worked on either the JEDI contract or the acquisition process.

Mattis did not respond to the request for a comment. When Donnelly picked up a comment, he referred CNN to their lawyer, Michael Levy, who said in a statement:

"During her time at the Department of Defense, Ms. Donnelly had no role in acquisition or procurement, and did not matter or exert influence in connection with government contracts, including, as the Department of Defense has repeatedly confirmed, the JEDI treaty. "

A spokesman for former Secretary of Defense Carter, listed on Oracle's chart, told CNN that he was" in the JEDI Contract, which started after leaving the Ministry of Defense, played no role ".

As Minister of Defense, Esper has the power to stop the allocation of defense contracts, although he should have a legitimate reason for doing so. "He could let this die on the vine," said a former Pentagon official who spoke on condition of anonymity. "Orders are not always forgiven."

Given the high profile of JEDI, this would likely trigger a massive firestorm. The Pentagon has strict rules for bidding. Any move by the government to change the tendering process would probably lead to lawsuits.

Zachary Cohen and Kaitlan Collins of CNN contributed to this report.


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