Wednesday, July 16, 2008
My thoughts on Blackwater
I was recently asked to comment about Blackwater and their PR spin.
I think that Blackwater might do something like this to improve public relations, but it is also good business for them to work to help their employers (the US military) to do things. Since they work closely with the government at all levels, look at the good they do at the local level in US disaster areas, it is natural that they would help out when they can. By doing a small favor like moving freight, they have made friends in the Guard and Reserve and among the locals. Not a bad deal!
This means that they can now find a little help with locals for labor and interpreters, and maybe even recruit a few of the Americans for their company.
I like Blackwater, and even admit they have faults, but their faults are no where near as horrible and some people would have us believe.
For example, the whole mess that got them examined in Iraq, where they claimed to have returned fire, but it seems they fired first, I tend to split the blame. I think that if you have a bunch of people keyed up for an attack, even a little honest mistake can lead to a big disaster. In a war zone, good people will make mistakes and kill innocents. I feel sorry for the people in the crossfire, but the terrorists have a nasty habit of hiding in crowds before they fire on the security forces. They are the real criminals! It amazes me that the Blackwater boys are able to restrain themselves enough to not make that mistake more often.
Thanks for asking!
Also, you might want to review the use of private contractors since medieval times. General Washington used many private contractors to fight to free America from the British Empire and it has been that way until after WWII. Then the US military removed most, but not all civilian berths and replaced the civilians with trained fighting men. As a Grad Student you are an excellent researcher, I know! Good luck.