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Monday, September 17, 2007

I Am Angry At The Iraqi Government

I have not muttered many negatives about the new Iraqi government. Sure, they are slow and have also been slow and are frustratingly slow at making things happen. Who can really blame them? I posted a few days ago about the men who signed the Declaration of Independence, and how they knew they were condemning themselves to death if they were caught. A key difference is that the men who hunted them wore red coats and wigs. You could see them coming from mile away, and they had to get within 100 feet to kill you with their single shot muskets.

Many of people who are hunting Al-Maliki and his government officials are cousins and you can't see a car bomb until it detonates.

According to FoxNews The Iraqi government has revoked the permission for the company named Blackwater to operate in Iraq after their involvement in a firefight that resulted in the deaths of some iraqi citizens. For those that don't understand the world of security, Blackwater is a big name in the intelligence and security world. They provide intelligence collection and analysis, as well as provide "shooters" to do things that our military can't do.

By that I don't mean that our military is incapable of doing these things, but that legally or because of rules of engagement (ROE) our forces are prevented from doing them. Blackwater is also one of many companies that provide private security for operations such as escorting cash shipments.

There were reports a few weeks ago about how private security operators outnumbered our troops in Iraq. I am not sure why the buzz, because it didn't come as a surprise to me. Those jobs pay a huge amount of money, and I have almost accepted two of them myself. The two I declined payed 110K and 140K, with the first 80K exempt from income taxes. A 100K job equates to about a 125K job stateside. The 140K job would have been equal to about a 180K job here. Neither of them was with Blackwater, but you see the attraction.

Anyway, it amazes me that the Iraqi government has taken this action. These private personnel are not limited in their ROE, so they have more freedom to enagage criminals and possible terrorists. The flip side is that they are not immune from local prosecutions, so activity deemed inappropriate could find someone on the chopping block, which is a reality and not a pun.

These private security personnel are doing what the Iraqi government cannot do, and that is protect many important things in Iraq such as infrastructure that provides electricity and water. They also protect many VIPs who need protection and can't trust anyone in Iraq who isn't American. I do not condone the negligent killing of innocent people for any reason. But things happen in a firefight. It is called the fog of war for a reason. The audacity to ban a company who does important work, while not being able to stop any terrorist activity is amazing.

Of course, much like democrat politicians, when you can't do something meaningful you do something that appears strong. I bet this won't last long.

6 Posts From Readers:

TRUTH-PAIN said...

Reactionary events like these happen all over the world i guess,... it is far too easy to throw the baby out with the bath water, as the saying goes. I don't know too much about Blackwater, but have heard they are amongst the best private security firms on the planet. Yet another American enterprise talking a black eye due to the expectations of perfection, in the middle of the fog of war,... what crap...
(So you are a Thompson man?...)

Robert said...

I have encountered Blackwater associates when I worked in DC, and they know their business. Like all police departments, and small businesses alike, there are those who do not perform at the expected level or amke mistakes. In this instance, the VP of Blackwater says that they were completely justified in their actions, because the people experienced a well planned ambush using IEDs and heavy weapons. They all escaped alive and so did their "principal" which is the person they were protecting.

As for your question, I am a Gingrich man actually. However, absent a Newt campaign I have to support Fred. We really need some momentum and some cohesion for a candidate.

There are daily stories about Obama and Clinton and virtually nothing about the GOP candidates because they are doing so little. We have to make a fire, so there will be smoke for people to be attracted.

I believe that Fred is the most conservative voice in the field.

Robert said...

I meant to tell you that it is good to see you creeping around. It seems as if you disappear for extended periods of time.

Always dropping in at your place to check. Hope all is well.

TRUTH-PAIN said...

... My apologies for the absentee-ism,.. It seems like the older I get the harder it is to stay on top of recurring things such as writing or Blog-surfin',... something that I truly love doing.

I love Gingrich myself,... especially his books,... the one about the Revolutionary War is a hell of a page-turner. But he is the Hillary of the Right,... probably so darn polarizing that he would have to do a severe correction towards the center just to appease linguini-spined moderates (Rush's words, not mine).

Look for Sarah Palin, Governor of Alaska to start blowing her starlight in the coming GOP convention. She has the moxy, credentials, quasi-libertarian ethos (my favorite) and (not that its important, but..) a nice looking woman to boot.... (as I duck the tomato throwers.... :)

Wadical said...

Blackwater doesn't hire "rookies" so you can bet the "shooters" involved were among the best in the business. In other words, not many (if any) could've done a better job if thrust into the same circumstances. They know their business, but they aren't the only game in town...a luxury to those who made this decision. Private Security contractors are an integral part of a secure Iraq.

Blackwater was a primary contractor protecting many of the top ranking Iraqi government officials. Those contracts will have to go to someone. Any of a number of other security contractors, be it Hart Group, Aegis Defense, Global Strategies, Omega, PSI (the list goes on) will gladly pick up the slack.

But they'll just be robbing from Peter to pay Paul, so to speak. The time will come again when private security will have to shoot back in defense of themselves or their "primaries" and it'll be the same thing all over again.

The Iraqi Government, not lacking in its share of religious zealots anyway, has to bend to some pretty irrational pressure from its citizenry. This was bound to happen and it'll happen again.

Blackwater has become a victim of its own success, finding itself in the unfortunate position of being a little to "high profile" for their own good. Ask 100 people to name a global private security firm and of the one's who are able, 90 percent of them will say "Blackwater". They developed a reputation as rogue bullies (albeit undeserved and thanks to the media) in New Orleans after Katrina. They have been the subject of numerous televised investigative reports and documentaries.

It ain't fair. But it ain't America either. It's the middle east. Not much is "fair", over there.

Robert said...

I can't find anything I disagree with here, Wad. I am not concerned about fairness, but it just pisses me off that in the midst of trying to save their asses, and spending lives of our troops and battling half of our citizenry in an attempt to give them time to build something that is stable, they spend their time doing things like this.

I guess it could be a bad thing for them that they are learning government from us...it isn't exactly a popular entity in our country, either.

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