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 AUTHOR
 NwMke
Joined: 8/1/2007
Msg: 1
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Black Water U.S. Shadow Army Page 1 of 6    (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6)
.

Has anyone heard of bushes shadow army?

Well now you have. Pay particular attention to the end of this clip and let me know if we have a reason to be nervous?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nqM4tKPDlR8

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-3993280749904838697

responses:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YgM5Q3c6XWk&watch_response

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6d5t6u4KKhY&watch_response

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DAibI5ahMGs&watch_response

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VUCitwKlmDo&watch_response



Geneva convention? Oversight?



.
 Mr H2O
Joined: 10/31/2006
Msg: 2
Black Water U.S. Shadow Army
Posted: 8/14/2007 12:06:57 AM
In gradeschool kids learn about the "Checks and Balances" of the USA government.
Separation of powers is a political doctrine under which the
Legislative, Executive and Judicial branches of government are kept distinct.

Obviously nobody is checking and it certainly is out of balance.

We are hiring private companies and people to perform tasks
at a vastly higher salary than the military pays,
plus huge corporate profits are being made in the bargain
…and this is going to cut costs?
 NwMke
Joined: 8/1/2007
Msg: 3
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Black Water U.S. Shadow Army
Posted: 8/14/2007 12:31:45 AM

"Blackwater" troops is not the problem! Bush is not the problem! Our next president will NOT be the problem!

Whew! Thats good to hear, I feel much comfort in knowing that.


The problem in the United States is the fact that most people cannot pay attention.

So we have a nation of ADD's huh? We also have lots of people who have been socially programmed using the hegelian dialectic, dual pressure models, double-do's/thinks etc, and lots more who suffer from denial and I think the greatest majority actually have apathy issues or just plain could care less.


Hey there nimrod, both parties are so corrupt, it's disgusting.

Ah so you protested by voting 3rd party last election(s) and you will vote for ron paul then or write him in next year then I take it to huh?


Whats next? Are you going to tell me Area 51 does not exist?

Nah I keep my UFO there LOL



.



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 Acebrock
Joined: 6/23/2007
Msg: 4
Black Water U.S. Shadow Army
Posted: 8/14/2007 1:02:58 PM
Black Water isn't a shadow army. It's actually a group of mercenaries, er, Military Contractors (same diff).
 NwMke
Joined: 8/1/2007
Msg: 7
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History
Black Water U.S. Shadow Army
Posted: 8/14/2007 2:34:28 PM
.

They are private contractors and they make a lot of cash.


Who funds them?

.
 namegame2
Joined: 4/17/2007
Msg: 8
Black Water U.S. Shadow Army
Posted: 8/14/2007 2:45:36 PM
The shadow army has been in existence long before this - even now private security companies are occupying our Malls, watching us while we shop. WAKE UP PEOPLE!!!
 NwMke
Joined: 8/1/2007
Msg: 9
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History
Black Water U.S. Shadow Army
Posted: 8/14/2007 2:46:43 PM
.

Black Water isn't a shadow army. It's actually a group of mercenaries, er, Military Contractors (same diff).


Where is the oversight?
They make all that cash while our kids in the US Military get paid dirt by comparison.
Anyone can hire them even usama bin laden!
Rules of engagement and the geneva convention? or dont care?
Who pays their checks and with whos money?

They are not under the direction of the us military. They have their own personal war. Therefore there are no rules.

They were so called rounding up "alleged" criminals at katrina. Would you want a group of criminals...errr I mean mercenaries with no oversight rounding you up?

Where is the federal jurisdiction to send federally employed soldiers, mercenary or otherwise to any state in the union? Waco?

.
 NwMke
Joined: 8/1/2007
Msg: 10
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History
Black Water U.S. Shadow Army
Posted: 8/14/2007 2:49:59 PM

The shadow army has been in existence long before this - even now private security companies are occupying our Malls, watching us while we shop. WAKE UP PEOPLE!!!


security companies in the malls are considerably different than mercenaries who hire out to the highest bidder.

One could easily make the comparison to an alqeada terrorist group.
 namegame2
Joined: 4/17/2007
Msg: 11
Black Water U.S. Shadow Army
Posted: 8/14/2007 3:02:12 PM

security companies in the malls are considerably different than mercenaries who hire out to the highest bidder.


How so?
 NwMke
Joined: 8/1/2007
Msg: 12
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History
Black Water U.S. Shadow Army
Posted: 8/14/2007 3:37:35 PM
they are gaurding malls not shooting iraqi civilians
 Challenge
Joined: 6/3/2006
Msg: 13
Black Water U.S. Shadow Army
Posted: 8/14/2007 3:43:27 PM
They run all type of OP's for various reasons....and those reasons need not be disclosed at this time.
They are hardly hiding out........here is their website, segmented by services offered, history....etc.


http://www.blackwaterusa.com/
 neocon
Joined: 8/6/2007
Msg: 14
Black Water U.S. Shadow Army
Posted: 8/14/2007 3:59:58 PM
[- Bush didn't declare war ]

you are exactly right only congress can declare war. Civics 101
Congress authorised a use of force
 NwMke
Joined: 8/1/2007
Msg: 16
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History
Black Water U.S. Shadow Army
Posted: 8/14/2007 4:25:24 PM

Old news man, get with the times. Instead of pointing to YouTube videos to support your lunacy, why don't you point to Blackwater USA's website instead? http://www.blackwaterusa.com/ Oh yeah, they are incorporated too.


I do hope you will forgive those of us who spent most of our time watching fox.

Oh is that something like going the cfr site or to the bush's here is the "truth" on wmds site?

thanks for the link

.
 NwMke
Joined: 8/1/2007
Msg: 19
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Black Water U.S. Shadow Army
Posted: 8/14/2007 4:52:14 PM
Its about mercenary armies and the use of them by the us.

Its been around for years and you have done NOTHING about it?

Get real just bringing up the name bush is bashing in itself!

You support an administration that strips you of the US constitution. We all thank you for that.

another constitution burning bush supporter ko'd
 NwMke
Joined: 8/1/2007
Msg: 20
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History
Black Water U.S. Shadow Army
Posted: 8/14/2007 4:57:59 PM

You chose to take the "high" road alright! I was right, again. After all, I had to present the actual website to keep your thread going. You must've been "taking the high road" to put up so many YouTube links and neglect to put up the ACTUAL Blackwater USA website. Or maybe you just didn't want to face up to the truth and at the same time keep other people in the dark about what an excellent organization Blackwater USA is and what a wonderful concept it is based on?
A lot of people whine about sending our voluteer (no draft) military overseas, so why not send ex-military volunteer civilians?


You certainly are full of assumptions.

Did you sort of skip this post? Explain and justify this:

Where is the oversight?
They make all that cash while our kids in the US Military get paid dirt by comparison.

Anyone can hire them even usama bin laden!
Rules of engagement and the geneva convention? or dont care?
Who pays their checks and with whos money?

They are not under the direction of the us military. They have their own personal war. Therefore there are no rules.

They were so called rounding up "alleged" criminals at katrina. Would you want a group of criminals...errr I mean mercenaries with no oversight rounding you up?

Where is the federal jurisdiction to send federally employed soldiers, mercenary or otherwise to any state in the union? Waco?
 Mr H2O
Joined: 10/31/2006
Msg: 22
Black Water U.S. Shadow Army
Posted: 8/14/2007 5:45:33 PM
The devil is in the details and people have to do their homework.
Love that internet , all you have to do is sort out the fact from fiction.

Ohhhhh My Bad - That would involve READING stuff !!!!
CNN Report: 1 in 5 American adults are functionally illiterate - 40 million people

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kZYp2YRvIqk

When a large portion of the USA is just plain stupid,
it's easy to feed them whatever you want on the evening news-
---because they can't figure stuff out for themselves ---.
 NwMke
Joined: 8/1/2007
Msg: 24
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Black Water U.S. Shadow Army
Posted: 8/14/2007 6:58:55 PM

CNN Report: 1 in 5 American adults are functionally illiterate - 40 million people


I have to comment on this!
I knew it was bad but I never realized it was that bad.

Only 50% are literate enough to sufficiently make a living. thats gotta be close to 75 - 80 million people! Did you catch that?
 slysterling
Joined: 1/9/2007
Msg: 25
Black Water U.S. Shadow Army
Posted: 8/14/2007 9:06:57 PM
msg24:
They are a private company, all private companies have oversight. Otherwise, they go out of business. Gotcha!

you got nothing...nada:


Blackwater's Mercenary Jackpot
By Jeremy Scahill, The Nation. Posted August 16, 2006.

We're still in the dark about why the U.S. government is writing all those blank checks to Blackwater Security.

While the Bush Administration calls for the immediate disbanding of what it has labeled "private" and "illegal" militias in Lebanon and Iraq, it is pouring hundreds of millions of dollars into its own global private mercenary army tasked with protecting US officials and institutions overseas.

The secretive program, which spans at least twenty-seven countries, has been an incredible jackpot for one heavily Republican-connected firm in particular: Blackwater USA.

Government records recently obtained by The Nation reveal that the Bush Administration has paid Blackwater more than $320 million since June 2004 to provide "diplomatic security" services globally. The massive contract is the largest known to have been awarded to Blackwater to date and reveals how the Administration has elevated a once-fledgling security firm into a major profiteer in the "war on terror."

Blackwater's highly lucrative "diplomatic security" contract was officially awarded under the State Department's little-known Worldwide Personal Protective Service (WPPS) program, described in State Department documents as a government initiative to protect US officials as well as "certain foreign government high level officials whenever the need arises."

A heavily redacted 2005 government audit of Blackwater's WPPS contract proposal, obtained by The Nation, reveals that Blackwater included profit in its overhead and its total costs, which would result "not only in a duplication of profit but a pyramiding of profit since in effect Blackwater is applying profit to profit." The audit also found that the company tried to inflate its profits by representing different Blackwater divisions as wholly separate companies.

The WPPS contract awarded in 2004 was divided among a handful of companies, among them DynCorp and Triple Canopy. Blackwater was originally slated to be paid $229.5 million for five years, according to a State Department contract list. Yet as of June 30, just two years into the program, it had been paid a total of $321,715,794. When confronted with this apparent $100 million discrepancy, the State Department could not readily explain it. Blackwater's two years of WPPS earnings exceed many estimates of the company's total government contracts, which the Virginian-Pilot recently put at $290 million combined since 2000. Six years ago the government paid Blackwater less than $250,000.

"This underscores the need for Congress to exercise real oversight on the runaway use of secret companies that have strong connections to the Bush Administration, for clandestine services all over the world," says Illinois Democrat Jan Schakowsky, a leading Congressional critic of private military companies...

...the Administration is looking for places to get more troops for Iraq," Coyle says.

While the WPPS program and the broader use of private security contractors is not new, it has escalated dramatically under the Bush Administration. According to the most recent Government Accountability Office report, some 48,000 private soldiers, working for 181 private military firms, are deployed in Iraq alone. Blackwater, now one of the most prominent and successful companies providing soldiers in Iraq, was relatively unknown until March 31, 2004, when four of its contractors were ambushed and killed in Falluja [see "Blood Is Thicker Than Blackwater"]. In the days and weeks that followed, company executives hired ultra-connected lobbyists and were welcomed by powerful government officials as heroes, allowing the firm to solidify its role in the Bush Administration's foreign policy apparatus.

Since 2003 Blackwater has held the high-profile job of guarding senior US officials in Iraq, including all three occupation-era ambassadors. The vaunted WPPS contract was awarded at the end of Paul Bremer's tenure in Baghdad. Blackwater, which did not respond to repeated requests for comment, refuses to divulge where its forces are deployed under the program. WPPS documents say contractors may be dispatched almost anywhere, including on US soil. The State Department says explicitly that there is a "long-term" need for these "protective services." Schakowsky says she will request a formal explanation from the department of the WPPS contract: "We need to know why the Bush Administration keeps writing blank checks to Blackwater and others, while it keeps Congress and the American people in the dark."


http://www.alternet.org/story/40164/?page=2
----------

Blackwater – Scahill

According to its website, Blackwater USA is "the most comprehensive professional military, law enforcement, security, peacekeeping, and stability operations company in the world."

In other words, it's an army for hire. And for the U.S. White House, Blackwater is proving to be a linchpin in the administration's Iraq war strategy. A means of outsourcing military personnel and as some argue... a way of reducing official US military casualty numbers.

Ultimately, for some, Blackwater represents a new back door for military expansion. A means of waging war without accountability. Jeremy Scahill is one of those critics -- a journalist who has been following Blackwater for years. Mr. Scahill is the author of a new book called, Blackwater, the Rise of the World's most Powerful Mercenary Army. He joins us from our studio in New York City,

We did request an interview with a representative of Blackwater U.S.A. but the company declined the opportunity to comment

http://www.cbc.ca/thecurrent/2007/200703/20070314.html
Here, you don't even have to be able to read:

http://www.cbc.ca/thecurrent/media/200703/20070314thecurrent_sec3.ram
----------

...We know from the Government Accountability Office that there are 48,000 employees of private military firms, mercenary companies operating in Iraq. 180 separate firms are registered operating in Iraq, Blackwater sort of being the industry leader. And they operate in a climate of total impunity. There is no effective law that governs these mercenary forces in Iraq.

Technically, the law of the land is something called the Military Extraterritorial Jurisdiction Act -- it's a mouthful -- that was passed in 2000, that said that anyone, any contractor working for or accompanying the armed forces could be subjected to prosecution under US law for crimes committed on the battlefield. Now, one of the major flaws of that -- I mean, there's a much bigger flaw, which I’ll explain in a second -- one of the major flaws of that is that Blackwater, for instance, isn't working for the military. It has a State Department contract in Iraq. So it's not technically working under the Department of Defense. So it could argue it's not really subjected to that law. Blackwater has been paid since June of 2004 $750 million by the State Department alone. That's just one of Blackwater's contracts.

And so, what's happening right now is that Representative David Price, who happens to be from Blackwater's home state of North Carolina -- he's a Democrat -- is putting forth legislation to expand that act, that I referred to before, to include all contractors, so it technically would cover Blackwater.

But the bigger problem is not how good it looks on paper. The bigger problem is -- you have 100,000 private forces operating in Iraq right now -- who is going to go do the investigations? Because according to this law, it would be US prosecutors. So a US prosecutor would go from Virginia over to Baquba? And who's going to protect them? And who's going to interview the Iraqi victims? And how would any of this work? And when I put that question to Representative David Price, he said, “Well, that's a good question. I didn't say it was a simple matter.” But the fact is that the mercenary industry is endorsing this legislation because it is not enforceable. And so, it looks great on paper. The mercenaries can go in front of Congress and say, “Well, there's this law. We can be prosecuted.” But the fact is only one person has been indicted, one contractor has been indicted, in these years of occupation in Iraq, and he wasn't even an armed military contractor.

AMY GOODMAN: And other laws that that congress members and senators are trying to put forward?

JEREMY SCAHILL: A very interesting thing happened late last year. The conservative South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham, himself a former JAG officer in the Air Force and currently a reservist lawyer for the Air Force, slipped in language to the 2007 defense authorization that President Bush signed into law that said that contractors will be placed under the UCMJ, the Uniform Code of Military Justice, the court-martial system. They went bonkers with this. And it’s actually one instance where -- ...


http://www.democracynow.org/article.pl?sid=07/03/20/1337226


AMY GOODMAN: And you're also writing about Blackwater actually being in charge of US troops. We only have a minute to go, but talk about Najaf.

JEREMY SCAHILL: One of the most disturbing incidents that happened in Iraq with mercenaries was on April 4, 2004. 4/4/04. Muqtada al-Sadr's forces from the Mahdi Army were in an uprising, because Paul Bremer had ordered the arrest of one of his top deputies, and there was a massive protest that hit the city of Najaf. Blackwater was guarding the occupation office there. They also had some Salvadoran troops, part of the Coalition of the Willing, as well as some active-duty US Marines.

And one of those Marines, Corporal Lonnie Young -- I got the official Marine account of that day. As the protest was happening, Lonnie Young, this active-duty Marine, has his weapon aimed into the crowd at a guy he says was carrying an AK-47. And he's thinking to himself, you know, “I need to ask for orders to open fire,” but there were no commanding officers on scene. So he asked permission from Blackwater to open fire. And he said, “Sir, I’ve acquired a target with your permission.” And he says Blackwater gave the order.

So Blackwater took active command of an active-duty US Marine in a battle that Muqtada al-Sadr’s forces recall as a massacre on April 4, 2004. Blackwater guys refer to it as their Alamo. It's unclear how many people were killed that day, but they were firing off so many rounds, the Blackwater guys and this Marine, that they had to stop every fifteen minutes to let their weapons cool. Lonnie Young, that Marine, says hundreds of people were killed that day. The US government would say that there were about twenty to thirty.

Ibid.


AMY GOODMAN: Back home, New Orleans.

JEREMY SCAHILL: Blackwater showed up in New Orleans without a contract right after Hurricane Katrina hit, beat most federal agencies to the hurricane zone, within days was hired up by the Department of Homeland Security. Blackwater paid its men, they told me, $350 a day. They billed the federal government $950 a day per Blackwater man. At one point, they had 600 men stretched from Texas all the way to Mississippi through the Gulf. Blackwater was raking in sometimes $240,000 a day.

In an act of extraordinary cynicism, Blackwater in November of 2005 held a fundraiser, a Hurricane Katrina fundraiser. Paul Bremer was the keynote speaker, and they pulled in $138,000 and gave it to the Red Cross. I didn't see the Red Cross at all when I was in New Orleans in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. But the point is they gave $138,000, but they were pulling in $240,000 a day

ibid.
 slysterling
Joined: 1/9/2007
Msg: 26
Black Water U.S. Shadow Army
Posted: 8/14/2007 9:36:36 PM
msg24
Keep 'em coming man, I'll chew you up and spit you out.

Really? Chew on this:

August 12, 2007:

Contractors accused of firing on civilians, GIs
Huge private force operates in Iraq with little supervision or accountability

There are now nearly as many private contractors in Iraq as there are U.S. soldiers — and a large percentage of them are private security guards equipped with automatic weapons, body armor, helicopters and bullet-proof trucks.

They operate with little or no supervision, accountable only to the firms employing them. And as the country has plummeted toward anarchy and civil war, this private army has been accused of indiscriminately firing at American and Iraqi troops, and of shooting to death an unknown number of Iraqi citizens who got too close to their heavily armed convoys.

Not one has faced charges or prosecution.

There is great confusion among legal experts and military officials about what laws — if any — apply to Americans in this force of at least 48,000.

Murky set of rules
They operate in a decidedly gray legal area. Unlike soldiers, they are not bound by the Uniform Code of Military Justice. Under a special provision secured by American-occupying forces, they are exempt from prosecution by Iraqis for crimes committed there.

The security firms insist their employees are governed by internal conduct rules and by use-of-force protocols established by the Coalition Provisional Authority, the U.S. occupation government that ruled Iraq for 14 months following the invasion.

But many soldiers on the ground — who earn in a year what private guards can earn in just one month — say their private counterparts should answer to a higher authority, just as they do. More than 60 U.S. soldiers in Iraq have been court-martialed on murder-related charges involving Iraqi citizens.

No prosecutions
Some military analysts and government officials say the contractors could be tried under the Military Extraterritorial Jurisdiction Act, which covers crimes committed abroad. But so far, that law has not been applied to them.

Security firms earn more than $4 billion in government contracts, but the government doesn’t know how many private soldiers it has hired, or where all of them are, according to the Government Accountability Office. And the companies are not required to report violent incidents involving their employees.

Security guards now constitute nearly 50 percent of all private contractors in Iraq — a number that has skyrocketed since the 2003 invasion, when then-Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said rebuilding Iraq was the top priority. But an unforeseen insurgency, and hundreds of terrorist attacks have pushed the country into chaos. Security is now Iraq’s greatest need.

Efforts to boost accountability
The wartime numbers of private guards are unprecedented — as are their duties, many of which have traditionally been done by soldiers. They protect U.S. military operations and have guarded high-ranking officials including Gen. David Petraeus, the U.S. commander in Baghdad. They also protect visiting foreign officials and thousands of construction projects.

At times, they are better equipped than military units.

Their presence has also pushed the war’s direction. The 2004 battle of Fallujah — an unsuccessful military assault in which an estimated 27 U.S. Marines were killed, along with an unknown number of civilians — was retaliation for the killing, maiming and burning of four Blackwater guards in that city by a mob of insurgents.

“I understand this is war,” said Rep. Jan Schakowsky, D-Ill., whose efforts for greater contractor accountability led to an amendment in next year’s Pentagon spending bill. “But that’s absolutely no excuse for letting this very large force of armed private employees, dare I say mercenaries, run around without any accountability to anyone.”

‘The Iraqis are very angry’
Blackwater has an estimated 1,000 employees in Iraq, and at least $800 million in government contracts. It is one of the most high-profile security firms in Iraq, with its fleet of “Little Bird” helicopters and armed door gunners swarming Baghdad and beyond.

The secretive company, run by a former Navy SEAL, is based at a massive, swampland complex in North Carolina. Until 9-11, it had few security contracts.

Since then, Blackwater profits have soared. And it has become the focus of numerous contractor controversies in Iraq, including the May 30 shooting death of an Iraqi deemed to be driving too close to a Blackwater security detail.

“The shooting of that Iraqi driver has intensified tensions,” Schakowsky said. “The Iraqis are very angry.”

Company spokeswoman Anne Tyrrell, in an e-mail to The Associated Press, said the shooting was justified. “Based on incident reports and witness accounts, the Blackwater professional acted lawfully and appropriately,” she wrote. There was no response to AP inquiries seeking further details.

Numerous allegations
Other alleged shootings involving private contractors include:

—An incident in which a supervisor for a Virginia-based security company said he was “going to kill somebody today” and then shot at Iraqi civilians for amusement, possibly killing one, according to two employees.

The two, former Army Ranger Charles L. Sheppard III and former Marine Corps sniper Shane B. Schmidt, were fired by the company, Triple Canopy, and responded with a wrongful termination lawsuit. Their suit did not identify the shift leader they said deliberately opened fire on civilians in at least two incidents while their team was driving in Baghdad. He was described only as a former serviceman from Oklahoma.

On its Internet site, the company said all three were fired for failing to immediately report incidents involving gunfire. Triple Canopy, after an initial investigation, reported no one had been hurt and handed its information to the U.S. government.

Patricia Smith, a lawyer representing Sheppard and Schmidt, said the U.S. Justice Department declined to investigate. The Justice Department declined comment on the case.

On Aug. 1, a Fairfax County, Va., jury ruled that Triple Canopy did not wrongly fire the two men. But jury forewoman Lea Overby also issued a scathing note on behalf of the panel, saying the company displayed “poor conduct, lack of standard reporting procedures, bad investigation methods and unfair double standards.”

The judge’s jury instructions, Overby said, left no choice but ruling against the former employees. “But we do not agree with the Triple Canopy’s treatment of (them),” she wrote.

Some shootings caught on tape
—Disgruntled employees of London-based Aegis Defence Services, holder of one of the biggest U.S. security contracts in Iraq — valued at more than $430 million — posted videos on the Internet in 2005 showing company guards firing automatic weapons at civilians from the back of a moving security vehicle.
In one sequence, a civilian car is fired on, causing the driver to lose control and slam into a taxi. Another clip shows a white car being hit by automatic weapons fire and then coming slowly to a stop.

In the videos, the security vehicle doesn’t stop. It speeds on, leaving the civilians and their shot-up vehicles behind.

After initially denying involvement, Aegis, run by former Scots Guard Lt. Col. Tim Spicer, issued a statement saying the shootings were legal and within rules-of-force protocols established by the now-defunct CPA. Those guidelines allow security guards to fire on vehicles that approach too close or too quickly. U.S. Army auditors, in their own investigation, agreed with Aegis.

An unknown number of victims
In the chaos of Iraq, where car bombings and suicide attacks occur over and over on any given day, such contractor shootings are commonplace, military officials say. The numbers of Iraqis wounded or killed by private guards is not known.

—Sixteen American security guards were arrested and jailed by U.S. Marines in battle-scarred Fallujah in 2005 following a day of shooting incidents in which they allegedly fired on a Marine observation post, a combat patrol and civilians walking and driving in the city, about 40 miles west of Baghdad.

The guards, employed by Zapata Engineering of North Carolina, were imprisoned for three days. “They were detained because their actions posed a threat to coalition forces. I would say that constitutes a serious event,” Marine spokesman Lt. Col. Dave Lapan said at the time.

The contractors were released and returned to the U.S., where they claimed the Marines humiliated and taunted them in prison, calling them “mercenaries” and intimidating them with dogs. The private guards denied taking part in the shootings.

Last year, the Naval Criminal Investigative Service closed its criminal investigation of the case “for lack of prosecutive merit,” a spokesman said. None of the 16 men where charged.

But days after the shootings, Marine Maj. Gen. Stephen T. Johnson, commander of western Iraq, banned the 16 contractors from every military installation in the area.

‘Your actions endangered ... lives’
In letters to each man, the general wrote: “Your convoy was speeding through the city and firing shots indiscriminately, some of which impacted positions manned by U.S. Marines.

“Your actions endangered the lives of innocent Iraqis and U.S. service members in the area.”

Since American contractors first swarmed into Iraq, animosity has run high between soldiers and private security guards. Many of the latter are highly trained ex-members of elite military groups including Navy SEALS, Green Berets and Army Rangers.

“Most military guys resent them,” said former Marine Lt. Col. Mike Zacchea, who spent two years in Iraq training and building the Iraqi army. “There’s an attitude that if these guys really wanted to do the right thing, they would have stayed in the military.”

‘Free agents on the battlefield’
Zacchea, now retired in Long Island, N.Y., said that as a senior battalion adviser, he was offered jobs by several security companies, with average salaries of $1,000 a day. He wasn’t interested. “I didn’t want to go to Iraq as a mercenary. I don’t believe in it. I don’t think what they’re doing is right.

“Really, these guys are free agents on the battlefield. They’re not bound by any law. They’re non-uniformed combatants. No one keeps track of them.”

In late 2004, the Reconstruction Operations Center (ROC) opened in Baghdad. Its purpose was to track movement of contractors and military troops around the country and to keep records of violent incidents.

Participation, however, is voluntary.

Military leaders say the government should demand that contractors report their movements and use of weapons. Last year, officials of the 3rd Infantry Division in Baghdad told visiting GAO auditors that lack of coordination continued to endanger the lives soldiers and contractors. Private security details continued to enter battle zones without warning, the military leaders said. In some cases, military officers complained they had no way of communicating with private security details.

Many large contractors say their guards coordinate with the ROC, and file “after-incident reports” of shooting episodes. But government auditors in Iraq reported last year that some contractors said they stopped detailing such shootings because they occurred so often it wasn’t possible to file reports for each one.


http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/20231579/page/3/
 Ticketoride
Joined: 6/3/2004
Msg: 27
Black Water U.S. Shadow Army
Posted: 8/14/2007 9:47:50 PM
...
 slysterling
Joined: 1/9/2007
Msg: 28
Black Water U.S. Shadow Army
Posted: 8/14/2007 10:08:32 PM
msg 24, full yet? Here's some more for you to chew on:
msg24:
That's because kids in the US military are... KIDS! C'mon now. An 18 year old straight out of boot camp is a liability...Gotcha again!

Too bad the American citizenry couldn't hunt you down like the dog you are for that completely anti-American comment. You have no shame and probably just a wimp that would pee his pants if he had to go to war.
msg21
Or maybe you just didn't want to face up to the truth and at the same time keep other people in the dark about what an excellent organization Blackwater USA is and what a wonderful concept it is based on?

sounds like it's you that's on the drugs here:

What if our mercenaries turn on us?

Chris Hedges is a graduate of Harvard Divinity School and won a Pulitzer Prize as a foreign correspondent
for the New York Times

Armed units from the private security firm Blackwater USA opened fire in Baghdad streets twice in two days last week. It triggered a standoff between the security contractors and Iraqi forces, a reminder that the war in Iraq may be remembered mostly in our history books for empowering and building America's first modern mercenary army.

There are an estimated 20,000 to 30,000 armed security contractors working in Iraq, although there are no official figures and some estimates run much higher. Security contractors are not counted as part of the coalition forces. When the number of private mercenary fighters is added to other civilian military "contractors" who carry out logistical support activities such as food preparation, the number rises to about 126,000.

"We got 126,000 contractors over there, some of them making more than the secretary of defense," said House defense appropriations subcommittee Chairman John Murtha (D., Pa.). "How in the hell do you justify that?"

The privatization of war hands an incentive to American corporations, many with tremendous political clout, to keep us mired down in Iraq. But even more disturbing is the steady rise of this modern Praetorian Guard. The Praetorian Guard in ancient Rome was a paramilitary force that defied legal constraints, made violence part of the political discourse, and eventually plunged the Roman Republic into tyranny and despotism. Despotic movements need paramilitary forces that operate outside the law, forces that sow fear among potential opponents, and are capable of physically silencing those branded by their leaders as traitors. And in the wrong hands, a Blackwater could well become that force.

American taxpayers have so far handed a staggering $4 billion to "armed security" companies in Iraq such as Blackwater, according to House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Rep. Henry Waxman (D., Calif.). Tens of billions more have been paid to companies that provide logistical support. Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D., Ill.) of the House Intelligence Committee estimates that 40 cents of every dollar spent on the occupation has gone to war contractors. It is unlikely that any of these corporations will push for an early withdrawal. The profits are too lucrative.

Mercenary forces like Blackwater operate beyond civilian and military law. They are covered by a 2004 edict passed by American occupation authorities in Iraq that immunizes all civilian contractors in Iraq from prosecution.

Blackwater, barely a decade old, has migrated from Iraq to set up operations in the United States and nine other countries. It trains Afghan security forces and has established a base a few miles from the Iranian border. The huge contracts from the war - including $750 million from the State Department since 2004 - have allowed Blackwater to amass a fleet of more than 20 aircraft, including helicopter gunships. Jeremy Scahill, the author of Blackwater: The Rise of the World's Most Powerful Mercenary Army, points out that Blackwater has also constructed "the world's largest private military facility - a 7,000-acre compound near the Great Dismal Swamp of North Carolina." Blackwater also recently opened a facility in Illinois ("Blackwater North") and, despite local opposition, is moving ahead with plans to build another huge training base near San Diego. The company recently announced it was creating a private intelligence branch called "Total Intelligence."

Erik Prince, who founded and runs Blackwater, is a man who appears to have little time for the niceties of democracy. He has close ties with the radical Christian Right and the Bush White House. He champions his company as a patriotic extension of the U.S. military. His employees, in an act as cynical as it is dishonest, take an oath of loyalty to the Constitution. But what he and his allies have built is a mercenary army, paid for with government money, which operates outside the law and without constitutional constraint.

Mercenary units are a vital instrument in the hands of despotic movements. Communist and fascist movements during the last century each built rogue paramilitary forces. And the appearance of Blackwater fighters, heavily armed and wearing their trademark black uniforms, patrolling the streets of New Orleans in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, may be a grim taste of the future. In New Orleans Blackwater charged the government $240,000 a day.

" 'It cannot happen here' is always wrong," the philosopher Karl Popper wrote. "A dictatorship can happen anywhere."

The word contractor helps launder the fear and threat out of a more accurate term: "paramilitary force." We're not supposed to have such forces in the United States, but we now do. And if we have them, we have a potential threat to democracy. On U.S. soil, Blackwater so far has shown few signs of being an out-and-out rogue retainer army, though they looked the part in New Orleans. But were this country to become even a little less stable, outfits like Blackwater might see a heyday. If the United States falls into a period of instability caused by another catastrophic terrorist attack, an economic meltdown that triggers social unrest, or a series of environmental disasters, such paramilitary forces, protected and assisted by fellow ideologues in the police and military, could ruthlessly abolish what is left of our eroding democracy. War, with the huge profits it hands to corporations, and to right-wing interests such as the Christian Right, could become a permanent condition. And the thugs with automatic weapons, black uniforms and wraparound sunglasses who appeared on the streets in New Orleans could appear on our streets.

http://www.philly.com/philly/opinion/20070603_What_if_our_mercenaries_turn_on_us_.html

msg21;{quote]what a wonderful concept...
yah. Just wonderful. Ready for dessert?
 Mr H2O
Joined: 10/31/2006
Msg: 29
Black Water U.S. Shadow Army
Posted: 8/15/2007 11:56:48 AM
It's easy to cut and paste but much more difficult to comprehend, digest and
then paraphrase in your own words for others to understand your personal views on it.
 slysterling
Joined: 1/9/2007
Msg: 30
Black Water U.S. Shadow Army
Posted: 8/15/2007 3:34:16 PM
^^^are you done posting off topic on this thread? Or is this just a habitual flaw you have on forums? Double check your own posting history before you go trying to comprehend anything mr water.
 splitrock
Joined: 5/16/2007
Msg: 31
Black Water U.S. Shadow Army
Posted: 8/15/2007 6:49:24 PM
OP, your government can hire private contractors or institute a draft.
What do you prefer?

Are private contractor deaths reported in official American casualty figures?
 NwMke
Joined: 8/1/2007
Msg: 32
view profile
History
Black Water U.S. Shadow Army
Posted: 8/15/2007 7:05:13 PM
.

Are private contractor deaths reported in official American casualty figures?


No they are not.

They are hiring private contractors at a rediculous prices when we have a freakin army! Step up recruitment get the recruiters off their azzes and have the go to the high schools like they used to do.

This is all part of privatization and incorporation for that matter of literally everything in this country.

Oh btw did you breathe today? "bill is in the mail"

Our kids get paid squat and die for oil while these "mercenaries" get paid 100k+ per year and they are for hire by the highest bidder, that means (anyone!), they go over there, and there are no rules no oversight, they can do anything they want literally with impunity. (and they are)

Is this what america is about? Or os this what america has become?

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