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LiviaOlivia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-05-06 08:46 PM
Original message
Concerning the mercenaries based out of North Carolina
An Indistinguishable Cog
By Matt O.
August 5, 2006

The Virginia-Pilot has an extensive six-part series on Blackwater USA, the private security firm mercenaries based out of North Carolina. The company was founded by Erik Prince in 1997 and were awarded the $21 million contract to protect Coalition Provisional Authority viceroy, Paul Bremer, in Iraq. (For more background on Blackwater, including Princes deep Republican ties, check out my post at the Iraq for Sale blog.) Blackwater rose to worldwide notability after four contractors were killed in Fallujah in March 2004. The crowd of Iraqis partly dismembered the bodies and strung up two of them on a bridge over the Euphrates River.

Families of the four slain in Fallujah are suing Blackwater:

The Fallujah ambush had profound consequences on two fronts:

In Iraq, it irrevocably altered the course of the war. U.S. military commanders, who had no advance knowledge of the convoys presence in Fallujah, were ordered by Washington to change tactics and pound the city into submission, inflaming the Iraqi insurgency to new heights.

Back home, families of the four victims are suing Blackwater for damages. The outcome could be costly for the company. It also has implications for the entire private military industry if it sets a precedent for holding companies legally responsible when their contractors die on the battlefield.

Blackwater also is the target of a lawsuit involving three servicemen killed in a plane crash in Afghanistan in November 2004. Citing the pending litigation, Blackwater declined to discuss either incident.

The companys defense is that "although it is a private company, it has become an essential and indistinguishable cog in the military machine and, like the military, should be immune from liability for casualties in a war zone."

At stake, Blackwater says, is nothing less than the authority of the president, as commander in chief of the armed forces, to wage war as he sees fit.

The plaintiffs say its all about corporate greed, unaccountability and a private army run amok.

Executive power is so expansive, even private companies get to use it! Take that anti-federalists! Paging John Yoo, paging John Yoo. Your services are needed.


read the rest at:
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mrcheerful Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-05-06 08:56 PM
Response to Original message
1. Erik Prince is Besty DeVos's brother, Bety Devos is married to
Dick DeVos who is currently running for Governor of Michigan, if memory serves me right.
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Dr.Phool Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-05-06 09:40 PM
Response to Reply #1
3. Maybe they should go back to guarding Amway shipments.
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LiviaOlivia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-05-06 09:02 PM
Response to Original message
2. Well done Matt O
Where's "60 Minutes" on this very scary "guns-for-hire" bullshit? Nowhere sadly. I don't want my tax dollars paying these criminals.

Matt you hit another ball outta the park.
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teryang Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-05-06 10:56 PM
Response to Original message
4. Why do we have Armed Forces and a National Guard?
So we can pay more taxes for unaccountable private mercenaries?
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eviltwin2525 Donating Member (269 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-06-06 11:41 PM
Response to Original message
5. Hmmm, I seem to remember....
something about a country which let a demagogue with a third of the vote and a private army leverage his way into absolute power. Now, what was that guy's name? Dolf something-or-other?
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RamboLiberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-07-06 12:06 AM
Response to Reply #5
6. This shit is scary - the Neocons could have their own f'in private army
Edited on Mon Aug-07-06 12:25 AM by RamboLiberal
this country is going down a very dangerous road with these trained mercs.

This is one company I would celebrate going belly-up.

I got pissed every time I see govt officials with their private Blackwater security - Bremer comes to mind.

It also irks me that our military trains at this facility. Message to U.S. Government - I want you training at your own facilities and if you don't have facilities - hit up Congress. I don't want my taxpayer's money going to Blackhawk and their ilk!

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