Category Archives: Mercenaries
My oh my..isn’t this something? Of course the word murder doesn’t enter into the FBI report..but what else do you call killing unarmed civilians? From the NYT:
Federal agents investigating the Sept. 16 episode in which Blackwater security personnel shot and killed 17 Iraqi civilians have found that at least 14 of the shootings were unjustified and violated deadly-force rules in effect for security contractors in Iraq, according to civilian and military officials briefed on the case.
The F.B.I. investigation into the shootings in Baghdad is still under way, but the findings, which indicate that the company’s employees recklessly used lethal force, are already under review by the Justice Department.
So the Iraqi’s were correct when they called it murder of innocent civilians..interesting no? But hold on there..just because they are murderers doesn’t mean they will be brought to justice my dear reader. From the article:
Prosecutors have yet to decide whether to seek indictments, and some officials have expressed pessimism that adequate criminal laws exist to enable them to charge any Blackwater employee with criminal wrongdoing. Spokesmen for the Justice Department and the F.B.I. declined to discuss the matter.
Five will get ya ten, Blackwater gets away with this..any takers? Also..this case could be dropped squarely in Mukasey’s lap..can’t wait to see him wiggle out of this one. As one investigator put it:
“I wouldn’t call it a massacre, but to say it was unwarranted is an understatement.”
Some of these innocent civilians were shot leaving the scene..which means most likely..in the back. Cold blooded killings my dear reader.
A separate military review of the Sept. 16 shootings concluded that all of the killings were unjustified and potentially criminal. One of the military investigators said the F.B.I. was being generous to Blackwater in characterizing any of the killings as justifiable. (emphasis mine)
No one has seen the video yet..From CNN:
Iraqi investigators have a videotape that shows Blackwater USA guards opened fire against civilians without provocation in an incident last week in which 11 people died, a senior Iraqi official said Saturday. He said the case had been referred to the Iraqi judiciary.
Family visits Hassan Jabir at a Baghdad, Iraq, hospital Saturday. He says guards in a U.S. convoy shot him.
Iraq’s president, meanwhile, demanded that the Americans release an Iranian arrested this week on suspicion of smuggling weapons to Shiite militias. The demand adds new strains to U.S.-Iraqi relations only days before a meeting between President Bush and Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki.
Maj. Gen. Abdul-Karim Khalaf, an Interior Ministry spokesman, said Iraqi authorities had completed an investigation into Thursday’s shooting in Nisoor Square in western Baghdad and concluded that Blackwater guards were responsible for the deaths.
He told The Associated Press that the conclusion was based on witness statements as well as videotape shot by cameras at the nearby headquarters of the national police command. He said eight people were killed at the scene and three of the 15 wounded died in hospitals.
Watch survivors describe the incident here. The NYT has a decent writeup here about the incident and the Iraqi’s statements about it. It also talks about other incidents where Blackwater is suspected of shooting first and covering their asses later:
According to General Khalaf, the other events under investigation are a Feb. 4 shooting that killed an Iraqi journalist near the Foreign Ministry; a Feb. 7 shooting in which three guards at the Iraqi state television station were killed; a Feb. 14 episode in which Blackwater employees are accused of smashing windshields; a shooting in May that killed one person near the Interior Ministry; a Sept. 9 shooting that killed five people near a Baghdad city government building; and a Sept. 12 shooting that wounded five people in eastern Baghdad.
Ms. Hillhouse has an interview up on her site that she recently conducted with BlackWater USA’s Prez Gary Jackson. This is quite a coup for her, since these folks aren’t usually too forthright with the interviews. She asks questions about Jeremy Scahill’s new book about the mercenary group that has gotten rich off the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. She also asks him about the owner of BlackWater, Erik Prince and his christian rightwing contributions.
Ms. Hillhouse has just completed a book entitled ‘Outsourced” about merc’s and the outsourcing of our wars. I have a pre-release copy and will dive into it shortly, I can’t wait to get started on it and will review it for you here.
Check out her interview..see how Jackson dodges questions..he is quite good at it.