AWS seeks Trump testimony in JEDI debate

Court filings allege that the US President's enmity with Amazon influenced the final decision

AWS has requested testimony from Donald Trump as part of its appeal against the Pentagon's decision to award its JEDI contract to Microsoft.

This was revealed through court fillings, which were made public on Monday, and state that Amazon's cloud division has asked a federal court for permission to take testimony from the US president who allegedly used his position to influence the final decision.

AWS was seen as the favourite to win the Pentagon's $10 billion Joint Enterprise Defence Infrastructure (JEDI) contract, but was left stunned as Microsoft was awarded the 10-year project in October.

The cloud giant announced it was going to appeal the decision a month later and suggested that the US commander and chief, Trump, had interfered with the bidding. Monday's court filings show that AWS wants the President to explain his involvement in court.

"The clear, public record of the commander-in-chief's personal animus toward Amazon and Mr Bezos, his campaign pledge to ensure that Amazon would 'have problems' if he became president, and his unprecedented interference in the JEDI award process with the DoD leadership team all demand that DoD's errors be assessed in light of a full record of that bias and pressure," the company said in the court filing.

"Accordingly, AWS seeks discovery and supplementation that are narrowly tailored to include the public record of bias and to develop facts not currently known or accessible to AWS demonstrating exactly how President Trump's order to 'screw Amazon' was carried out during the decision-making process."

A year before the final decision was made, it's alleged that Trump called his Pentagon Secretary James Mattis and directed him to "screw Amazon" out of a chance to bid on the JEDI contract. This is according to Mattis' book "Holding The Line: Inside Trump's Pentagon with Secretary Mattis". The account was written by Guy Snodgrass, who served as a speechwriter for Mattis.

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