For certain members of the Bush family the war in Iraq has been very profitable. Just ask William H.T. Bush, or, as President George W. Bush calls him, Uncle Bucky. Bucky Bush just made a cool $450,000 in war profits from Iraq through the St. Louis-based defense contractor Engineered Support Systems Inc. Bucky, who sits on the company’s board, cashed out a half-million of the company’s stock options last month.
ESSI’s stock prices skyrocketed “to record heights” with Uncle Bucky’s nephew’s decision to invade Iraq. ESSI raked in millions with contracts to refit military vehicles with extra armor, build $19-million worth of its protective shelters for chemical and biological weapons (despite the fact that no biological or chemical weapons have been found in Iraq), and provide communications support services to the Coalition Provisional Authority. Of course, the company hasn’t been without its share of trouble, even with a family member in the White House: some of ESSI’s no-bid contracts (with a value of $158 million) are now under investigation by the Pentagon.