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Blackwater's Private Spies

 
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 07, 2008 11:20 pm    Post subject: Blackwater's Private Spies  Reply with quote

Blackwater's Private Spies

http://www.thenation.com/doc/20080623/scahill

Excerpt:

This past September, the secretive mercenary company Blackwater USA found its name splashed across front pages throughout the world after the company's shooters gunned down seventeen Iraqi civilians in Baghdad's Nisour Square. But by early 2008, Blackwater had largely receded from the headlines save for the occasional blip on the media radar sparked by Congressman Henry Waxman's ongoing investigations into its activities. Its forces remained deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan, and business continued to pour in. In the two weeks directly following Nisour Square, Blackwater signed more than $144 million in contracts with the State Department for "protective services" in Iraq and Afghanistan alone and, over the following weeks and months, won millions more in contracts with other federal entities like the Coast Guard, the Navy and the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center.

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     Jeremy Scahill & VideoNation : In this interview with RealNews, Nation Correspondent Jeremy Scahill explains how Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama differ on the use of private security contractors in Iraq.
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     Blackwater's Private Spies

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     Jeremy Scahill: The notorious mercenary firm is now a one-stop shop for security outsourcing, offering CIA-like services to Fortune 500 companies.
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   *
     Contract Justice

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     Jeremy Scahill: An Iraqi translator is prosecuted and Blackwater has its contract renewed for another year, armed and dangerous in Baghdad.
   *
     Blackwater Seeps Into the Campaign

     Blackwater

     Jeremy Scahill: Clinton and Obama each have nuanced plans to ban private security firms from Iraq. The difference is how they're spinning them.
   *
     Blackwater, the Campaign Issue

     Blackwater

     Jeremy Scahill & VideoNation : In this interview with RealNews, Nation Correspondent Jeremy Scahill explains how Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama differ on the use of private security contractors in Iraq.
   *
     Obama's Mercenary Position

     Iraq War

     Jeremy Scahill: He calls private security forces "unaccountable" but may use them in Iraq. Meanwhile, Clinton wants to ban them. UPDATED
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     Jeremy Scahill: An independent journalist talks about what's really happening in Iraq, and why neither Hillary Clinton nor Barack Obama have a plan for ending the catastrophe.

Blackwater's Iraq contract was extended in April, but the company is by no means betting the house on its long-term presence there. While the firm is quietly maintaining its Iraq work, it is aggressively pursuing other business opportunities.

In September it was revealed that Blackwater had been "tapped" by the Pentagon's Counter Narcoterrorism Technology Program Office to compete for a share of a five-year, $15 billion budget "to fight terrorists with drug-trade ties." According to the Army Times, the contract "could include antidrug technologies and equipment, special vehicles and aircraft, communications, security training, pilot training, geographic information systems and in-field support." A spokesperson for another company bidding for the work said that "80 percent of the work will be overseas." As Richard Douglas, a deputy assistant secretary of defense, explained, "The fact is, we use Blackwater to do a lot of our training of counternarcotics police in Afghanistan. I have to say that Blackwater has done a very good job."

Such an arrangement could find Blackwater operating in an arena with the godfathers of the war industry, such as Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman and Raytheon. It could also see Blackwater expanding into Latin America, joining other private security companies well established in the region. The massive US security company DynCorp is already deployed in Colombia, Bolivia and other countries as part of the "war on drugs." In Colombia alone, US military contractors are receiving nearly half the $630 million in annual US military aid for the country. Just south of the US border, the United States has launched Plan Mexico, a $1.5 billion counternarcotics program. This and similar plans could provide lucrative business opportunities for Blackwater and other companies. "Blackwater USA's enlistment in the drug war," observed journalist John Ross, would be "a direct challenge to its stiffest competitor, DynCorp--up until now, the Dallas-based corporation has locked up 94 percent of all private drug war security contracts." The New York Times reported that the contract could be Blackwater's "biggest job ever."
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 09, 2008 2:35 pm    Post subject: Re: Blackwater's Private Spies Reply with quote

No disrespect intended for Jeremy, but Blackwater has to provide those services to have a charter in the US. So it shouldn't come as such a surprise.
Blackwater is only your 3rd biggest and all sorts of PMC'c are running loose in the US. Most Fortune 500's, 100's and all multinational corps have security etc for all personnel that travel and the reverse is true coming your direction. Your pentagon uses Aegis (a British firm) by far more than Blackwater (100 Million/yr alone in Iraq) So add that to the 100+ listed private defense contractors licensed in the USA and its quite an ongoing concern. Almost all of them are traded on your stock market,part of most 401K's and part of all mutual funds. The UK may have larger but fewer and Canada has a large number of the most aggressive. Happy hunting.
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 09, 2008 2:52 pm    Post subject: Re: Blackwater's Private Spies Reply with quote

I don't understand something though and maybe somebody on this forum can explain what goes on there. Not by the politicians they all smoke they same stuff but from the people.  The Democrats control Congress. The House can bring to the floor ANYTHING Pelosi wants, yet with all the issues you have to face the Chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, thinks its more important to spend 100,000's of USD holding hearings about potential misinformation given during testimony by baseball on Steroid use? That fills the airwaves here. This is almost as stupid as the Congressman from New York (another Democrat - Charlie Wrangell) wanting to re institute the draft.

And people have convinced themselves that more Democrats will solve the problem. That is what I don't understand for those of you who think their vote means anything. Why elect more of the same?

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