November 15, 2007
Until Jeremy Scahill wrote his terrific book entitled "BLACKWATER: The Rise of The World's Most Powerful Mercenary Army" I had no idea that my country was hiring mercenaries by the thousands. There may have been an article or two that I missed, but more mercenaries than U.S. troops? Who knew?
Who knew that Bremer gave them immunity from prosecution in Iraq? Who knew that BLACKWATER, not the Marines, guarded our embassy and indeed all of our diplomats?
Now we know and we also know that BLACKWATER hired "cowboys" who treat Iraqi civilians as unimportant or worse. NYT reported yesterday that the FBI has concluded "the shooting deaths of at least 14 of the 17 Iraqi civilians shot by BLACKWATER personnel were`unjustified."
Scahill met BLACKWATER "soldiers" in New Orleans hours after Katrina hit. Their job? Protect FEMA personnel. Why BLACKWATER? One explanation is that the National Guard was occupied elsewhere. But look out. BLACKWATER wants to operate in the U.S. To whom would they report? The Police chief, the governor, or Homeland Security? i say, no thanks. Stay in your cave.
Governors Meet: A meeting of governors from the upper Mid-West in Milwaukee agreed to cut emission from coal burning power plants. This would have been hot news ten years ago but today the call should be for a moratorium on new coal burning plants. Ever heard of global warming? Step it up!
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