Amazon is one of the biggest businesses in the world.
The online retailer globally caters to its consumers selling anything you need – from clothing to technology to food and essentially everything in between.
Now Amazon has branched out and is now accused of shady dealings of this $10 billion contract from the federal government.
Amazon is one of the “Big Four” technology companies along with Google, Apple, and Facebook. If you need anything, Amazon is the website for you. It’s basically an online Walmart except it sells even more stuff and you don’t have to do any traveling to get what you want.
It was right after Independence Day in 1994 when Jeff Bezos founded the global company in Bellevue, Washington. It exclusively sold books to the masses and was the cheapest place to purchase them.
Eventually, it branched out and began selling electronics, software, video games, apparel, furniture, toys, and jewelry. If you need music; they’ve got you. Do you like movies? They’ve got you there too.
And In 2017, Amazon acquired Whole Foods Market for $13 billion. So, yes, it basically sells everything you need to survive.
But you might be surprised that Amazon has a checkered shady history for a $10 billion contract for cloud computing from the Defense Department’s Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI).
A legal battle waged by Oracle in a complaint filed in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims stated that it is unwise for the government to use only one cloud service and that the process was rigged from the beginning due to connections between Amazon and DoD officials.
Oracle claimed in its filing, “In a fair and lawful competition, Oracle would have a substantial chance for a JEDI contract award.”
Oracle, in its complaint, points to the involvement of former DoD employee Deap Ubhi, who worked at Amazon before joining the DoD in August 2016. Ubhi is now at Amazon once again, with Amazon Web Services, Inc. (AWS) — the entity that handles cloud computing.
They also claimed Ubhi was a project manager for JEDI and pushed for the Pentagon to use a single vendor for cloud computing, despite the Intelligence Community and the Department of Homeland Security each determining that multiple cloud vendors are preferable.
A House Appropriations Committee report addressed JEDI’s single vendor plan by stating they were “concerned with this approach given the rapid pace of innovation in the industry and that this approach may lock the Department of Defense into a single provider for potentially as long as ten years.”
The DoD’s own “Cloud Strategy” from December 2018 even says that they “must address the unique mission requirements through a multi-cloud, multi-vendor strategy.”
Ubhi was the one who influenced the Pentagon to grant just one single contract instead of outsourcing or allocating funds to multiple entities.
A competing bidder even told Vanity Fair, “Everybody immediately knew it was Amazon.”
Oracle claimed he Department of Defense only took another look at Ubhi because of pressure stemming from probes by the DoD Inspector General’s Office and the FBI.
It also alleges that former Secretary of Defense General James Mattis privately met with Amazon owner Jeff Bezos in August 2017 and kept it a secret.
Here’s the photographic proof too:
— Jeff Bezos (@JeffBezos) August 10, 2017
Some companies are just entirely too powerful and the federal government shouldn’t be rewarding them with bogus multibillion dollar contracts.