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Judge puts Amazon's lawsuit challenging the Pentagon's $10 billion cloud contract award to Microsoft on hold until August

Andy Jassy AWS Andy Jassy AWS
Amazon Web Services CEO Andy Jassy.
REUTERS/Mike Blake

A federal judge paused Amazon's lawsuit challenging the Pentagon's decision to award a $10 billion Pentagon cloud computing contract to Microsoft after the Department of Defense last month requested a remand, saying it "wishes to reconsider" aspects of the decision.

The Department of Defense last year chose Microsoft for its Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI) deal, a massive cloud project that will store and manage sensitive military and defense data. A judge remanded Amazon's lawsuit challenging that decision for 120 days, or until August.

Microsoft's win of the JEDI deal was seen as a huge upset to some: Amazon Web Services was viewed as the frontrunner throughout the entire bidding process — but lost out amid what AWS alleges was interference from President Donald Trump, a frequent critic of Amazon and its CEO Jeff Bezos, who also owns the Washington Post newspaper. 

The Pentagon's request for remand came after a federal judge recently gave an indication that Amazon's challenge could be successful, writing in a that AWS can likely prove the Pentagon made an error in the evaluation process and that the error affected the outcome. Microsoft disagrees, after losing the deal fair and square.

Last week, the Pentagon inspector general cleared the Defense Department's decision to award the $10 billion JEDI contract to Microsoft but said that the team couldn't fully investigate Amazon's allegation about Trump's role in the process because the White House barred key witnesses from cooperating.

Amazon in response blasted the White House for what it described as a "blatant attempt" to block a probe of Trump's involvement.

Are you a Microsoft or Amazon Web Services employee? Contact this reporter via email at astewart@pakimodels.com, message her on Twitter @ashannstew, or send her a secure message through Signal at 425-344-8242.

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