This video is called Inside Blackwater: Iraq’s Most Controversial Private Military Contractor.
From British daily The Morning Star:
(Sunday 27 July 2008)
War PLC by Stephen Armstrong
(Faber & Faber, £14.99)
SHOCKING: War PLC by Stephen Armstrong.
It should surprise no-one that privatisation zealots have put their grubby fingers straight into one of the richest pies of them all – war.
Nowhere has this been clearer than in Iraq, where the US Department of Defence had issued 149 contracts worth $42 billion involving around 100,000 “private contractors” – mercenaries to you and me – by the end of 2005.
Earlier this year, author Stephen Armstrong attended a DfID conference, where it was estimated that the industry was worth approximately $85 billion a year and had several million people employed in it.
According to US Logistics Management Institute, a subsidiary of Halliburton, KBR, “had done with $462 million and 6,766 personnel (during the Balkans conflict) what would otherwise have required 8,918 troops and $638 million.”
Much of the work centres on logistics, supplies and construction and protection of “assets.” Front line combat is still rare.
But, as Armstrong discovers, a much murkier battlefield is being privatised. Enter market leader Diligence LLC – a private intelligence company founded by former MI5 and CIA operatives Nick Day and Mike Baker respectively.
Diligence offers “24/7 monitoring of civil unrest, environmental and health concerns, economic stability and information technology.” Tellingly, former Conservative Party leader Michael Howard is its European chairman.
Armstrong met its managing director Russell Corn, a former Royal marine, who let it be known that “easily, one in four of the people of every (political) activist camp are taking the corporate shilling.” He should know.
This is a skilful, thoroughly researched and appropriately fast-paced book. It points to the tip of a corporate iceberg that might yet disembowel democracy and let it sink, taking us all down with it.
Privatising water in New Zealand: here.