The Washington Post (27/5/2007) highlights an incident involving Blackwater, the private American security firm hired to guard commercial interests in Iraq.
“Blackwater confirmed that its employees were involved in two shootings but could neither confirm nor deny that there had been any casualties, according to a company official who declined to be identified because of the firm’s policy of not addressing incidents publicly.
Blackwater’s security consulting division holds at least $109 million worth of State Department contracts in Iraq, and its employees operate in a perilous environment that sometimes requires the use of deadly force. But last week’s incidents underscored how deeply these hired guns have been drawn into the war, their murky legal status and the grave consequences that can ensue when they take aggressive action.” (Source: Washington Post 27/5/2007)
The report highlights the concerns I expressed about the extent to which private concerns are taking on more and more roles without examining the implications, legal or moral, of such acts. As the report indicates what happens to Blackwater staff is subject to complete secrecy. The video linked in the earlier article points up the consequences for the families of staff involved. It also showed that they joined with the military forces in the humiliation and torture of Iraqis. This all compounds the resentment felt by Iraqis of the occupation of their land.
In short the new “surge” that Bush insists on, supported shamefully by Blair et al, would seem to be increasingly counter productive. Time to end the conflict, time for Blair to depart, but Gordon, are you going to take all this seriously?
See also: “I lost my son to a war I oppose”