Donald Trump and Bush’s, Blair’s mercenaries

This video from the USA says about itself:


6 February 2017

This lecture is by former Nebraska policewoman, Kathryn Bolkovac. She served as a U.N. peacekeeper. Ms. Bolkovac discusses her story of human trafficking, and other topics with Tanya Domi, whose reporting broke this story. Kathryn Bolkovac’s post was with the International Police Task Force which was arranged by DynCorp Aerospace. She was assigned to run the IPTF office that investigates sex trafficking, domestic abuse and sexual assault to support the UN peacekeeping mission in Bosnia.

But once she arrived in Sarajevo, she discovered military officers involved in human trafficking and forced prostitution, with links to private mercenary contractors, the UN, and the U.S. State Department.

After bringing this evidence to light, Bolkovac was successively demoted, threatened with bodily harm, fired, and ultimately forced to flee the country under cover of darkness—bringing the incriminating documents with her.

Thanks to the evidence she collected, she won a lawsuit against DynCorp, publicly exposing their human rights violations.

Her story, recounted in the book The *Whistleblower: Sex Trafficking, Military Contractors, and One Woman’s Fight for Justice*, later become the Hollywood feature film “The Whistleblower”.

By Solomon Hughes in Britain:

Bush‘s and Blair‘s hired goons inspired Trump

Friday 18th August 2017

Struggling with his predecessors’ wars, Trump is seeking advice from a very dodgy mercenary firm, writes SOLOMON HUGHES

US PRESIDENT Donald Trump has turned to the men behind DynCorp International, a private military company with a history of scandal for key security advice. Trump turning to the private-military company men for foreign policy advice is alarming.

But it also shows he has a lot in common with former US president George W Bush — and our own Tony Blair.

DynCorp describes itself as “a leading global government solutions provider in support of the US and allied stability objectives.”

Behind this bland management-speak is a military firm. But unlike traditional arms firms, it specialises in supplying people rather than things.

DynCorp supplies staff who carry guns and fly warplanes in the US “war on terror” and “war on drugs.” It is what came to be known as a “private military company” in the 2000s, but would have previously been called mercenaries.

The corp is owned by an investment firm called Cerberus Capital Management. A military company owned by a private equity firm named after the terrifying three-headed dog that guards the gates of hell might be a bit of a red light to some. But not Trump. He has turned to two of its men for advice.

Cerberus founder and boss Steve Feinberg has strong Republican Party links. Feinberg hired Dan Quayle, the US vice-president under George W Bush with a reputation for being dim, to help run Cerberus Capital.

Feinberg is a big Republican donor too. Just before the election he gave nearly $1 million to Rebuild America Now, a committee which funded anti-Hillary Clinton and pro-Trump election ads.

According to the New York Times, Trump is, on recommendation of his “chief strategist” Steve Bannon and his son-in-law and “senior adviser” Jared Kushner, looking to Feinberg for advice on how to deal with the ongoing, and still failing, US intervention in Afghanistan.

Trump’s chief of staff — his top employee and right-hand man — General John F Kelly also worked for DynCorp. Kelly was a marine corps general, who in January 2017 became the secretary of homeland security, before becoming Trump’s chief of staff in July. However, like many other retired generals, Kelly was also an arms industry lobbyist. Through much of 2016 Kelly was an “adviser” to DynCorp, earning $166,000 while working for the firm.

With all these DynCorp-linked men helping him, Trump is unsurprisingly leaning towards using more private military contractors like DynCorp to run the US mission in Afghanistan. But they could bring scandal.

The real boom in the new mercenary firms came with the Iraq war, but DynCorp was in the business before then.

I first became aware of DynCorp in 2001. The United Nations created a police force in post-war Bosnia led by member nations.

The United States hired DynCorp to supply its officers, mostly hiring US police officers and sheriffs — some with a bad record.

One of the officers, a very brave and principled woman called Kathryn Bolkovac, saw something wrong. There is a lot of prostitution during and after war, but when Bolkovac investigated she found many UN police officers — including British and US ones — were using or even trafficking prostitutes.

Bolkovac raised this with DynCorp, but it tried to shut her up and sacked her. Because the DynCorp contract was run through Aldershot, Bolkovac fought back with a successful employment tribunal case in Britain.

She won her “whistleblower” case, exposing DynCorp’s willingness to cover up corruption and sexual exploitation on its contracts.

But her exposure did not stop DynCorp getting work out of the “war on terror.”

In 2004 DynCorp was given a £1 billion contract to train Iraq’s post-war police force. US auditors found in 2007 that the company’s police training contract was completely mismanaged and probably marred by fraud.

Weird DynCorp behaviour included building an unauthorised Olympic-style swimming pool for Iraqi police top brass, while a police training college was so shoddily built that it showered sewage on the heads of lower ranked officers. Regardless of this, in 2008 DynCorp was given a $99m contract to train the still struggling Iraqi army.

Despite the expensive training, the army never performed well.

Faced with the failing DynCorp-trained army, the Iraqi government relied on sectarian militias to supplement it, which was a bad result all round. DynCorp also won contracts to train the police in post-invasion Afghanistan. As well as facing similar accusations of waste and incompetence, DynCorp staff outraged locals by allegedly taking drugs and hiring “dancing boys”.

DynCorp also supplied security guards for former Afghan president Hamid Karzai, leading to a scandal when some guards were found drunk with a prostitute.

Despite the terrible, and sometimes dangerous, performance by DynCorp and other private military companies, it got huge contracts in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Both Bush and Blair were happy with the use of private military contractors because they were keen on privatisation. They were also happy to disguise how large an armed force was needed in Iraq and Afghanistan by using private contractors to supplement our military.

In general the British tended to use British private military firms like ArmorGroup (now part of G4S). But the country has also given contracts to DynCorp as well. Babcock-DynCorp, a joint venture with a British firm, got some multi-million Ministry of Defence contracts. Our ex-top brass did work for the firm as well. In 2014 Baron Richards, former UK chief of defence staff worked as a DynCorp consultant.

But on the whole, the US firm did most of its work for the US. The Iraq and Afghan operations relied heavily on private contractors. They were also some of the most disastrous military adventures for decades.

But with Trump turning to DynCorp’s men for advice on Afghanistan, the contracts and disasters look set to continue.

One of the problems we have is that as long as these big private firms get contracts from war, there is a big powerful business lobby ready to argue war is an easy option.

Trump turning to this military-industrial complex for advice is very bad, but it also follows in the tradition both of Bush and Blair.

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