As Xe Services formerly known as Blackwater, recently received a new $100 million dollar contract, the Commission on Wartime Contracting (CWC) was holding hearings on the value and cost effectiveness of such contracts. The CWC is an independent, bipartisan legislative commission established to study wartime contracting in Iraq and Afghanistan. Created in Section 841 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2008, this eight-member Commission is mandated by Congress to study federal agency contracting for the reconstruction, logistical support of coalition forces, and the performance of security functions, in Iraq and Afghanistan. The Commission grilled the panel on the proper role and oversight of more than 40,000 private security contractors supporting U.S. operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The Commission is required to issue at least two reports, an interim report and a final report to Congress. The interim report, "At What Cost? Contingency Contracting in Iraq and Afghanistan," was issued June 10, 2009. The final report, due in 2011, will include findings, identify lessons learned, and include specific recommendations for improvements to be made in a broad range of matters related to wartime contracting. The Commission will sunset 60 days after submitting its final report.