From the Open-Publishing Calendar
From the Open-Publishing Newswire
Indybay Feature
Mon Sep 17 2007 (Updated 09/24/07)
Blackwater Security banned from Iraq?
Mon Sep 17 2007 (Updated 09/24/07)
Iraqi Government May Boot Blackwater USA
Sept 21st Update: An Iraqi interior ministry investigation has found that Blackwater is "100% guilty" of the incident in which 11 Iraqi civilians were killed, but the US security firm has resumed limited operations in the Iraqi capital.
Iraq Relents on Blackwater | Democracy Now Report | WSWS Report

On Monday September 17th Iraq's Interior Ministry revoked the license of Blackwater USA and demanded that all employees leave the country. The ban followed a Sunday gunbattle in Baghdad that left eight civilians dead. The Interior Ministry said authorities will prosecute any foreign contractors found to have used excessive force and "all those responsible for Sunday's killing will be referred to Iraqi justice." On Tuesday, the Iraqi government softened its stance, saying that the ban on Blackwater was not permanent, but warned it planned to review the legal immunity of all private security companies. Some commentators doubt that Blackwater will be expelled at all or if any US nationals will be turned over to Iraqi authorities.

Blackwater USA is a private military company and security firm. Founded in 1997 by Erik Prince and Al Clark, it is based in North Carolina where it operates a tactical training facility which it claims is the world's largest. The company trains more than 40,000 people a year, from all the military services and a variety of other agencies.

In 2003, Blackwater landed its first high-profile contract: guarding Ambassador L. Paul Bremer in Iraq. On March 31, 2004, Iraqi insurgents in Fallujah ambushed a convoy containing four American private military contractors from Blackwater who were conducting delivery for food caterers. The bodies were then hung over a bridge crossing the Euphrates. Family members of those killed later sued the company for wrongful death. Blackwater has countersued for $10 million on the grounds that the lawsuit is in violation of contractual agreements signed by the men prior to deployment.

Since June 2004, Blackwater has been paid more than $320 million out of a $1 billion, five-year State Department budget for the Worldwide Personal Protective Service, which protects U.S. officials and some foreign officials in conflict zones. In 2006, Blackwater won the remunerative contract to protect the U.S. embassy in Iraq, which is the largest American embassy in the world.

It is estimated by the Pentagon and company representatives that there are 20,000 to 30,000 armed security contractors working in Iraq, and some estimates are as much as 100,000, though no official figures exist.

Can Iraq (or Anyone) Hold Blackwater Accountable for Killing Iraqi Civilians? | Iraq expands US security firm probe | Iraq row grounds US diplomats | Largest Mercenary Army: Blackwater | Jeremy Scahill Responds to Blackwater CEO Erik Prince | Making a Killing: America's Private Army and the Business of War | The Rise of the World's Most Powerful Mercenary Army | The American "civilian contractors" killed in Falluja | Blackwater Plans for New Military Facility Near San Diego
10/25/16 Stakes High as Tenants Push Back Against Landlords and Real Estate Lobbyists on November 8 Front Page | Health, Housing, and Public Services | East Bay | Peninsula | California | Government & Elections10/25/16 People's Block Party Supplants Oakland Police "Copaganda" Effort, Saves Home Front Page | Police State and Prisons | Racial Justice | Health, Housing, and Public Services | East Bay10/21/16 32-Year-Old Man with Garden Rake Deemed Threat, Killed by Santa Cruz Police Front Page | Police State and Prisons | Health, Housing, and Public Services | Santa Cruz Indymedia10/19/16 NFL Quarterback Kaepernick Inspires Resistance to Mindless Nationalism at Athletic Events Front Page | Police State and Prisons | Racial Justice | Anti-War | Education & Student Activism | San Francisco | East Bay | U.S.10/19/16 Despite Interference by Oakland Police, Protesters Marched for Keith Lamont Scott Front Page | Police State and Prisons | Racial Justice | East Bay10/10/16 Identity Evropa Leader Operating Out Of CSU Stanislaus, Spreading Fascist Propaganda Front Page | Racial Justice | Education & Student Activism | Arts + Action | Central Valley | San Francisco | California | U.S.10/10/16 Mothers and Fathers Speak Out In SF Against Racist Police Murders and Executions Front Page | Police State and Prisons | Racial Justice | San Francisco10/09/16 Diallo Neal's Mother Continues to Demand Justice for Son Despite Statute of Limitations Front Page | Police State and Prisons | Racial Justice | East Bay10/04/16 Bay Area Rallies on International Day in Solidarity with People of Haiti Front Page | Peninsula | California | Haiti | Americas10/04/16 "Bye Libby" Campaign Collecting Signatures for Special Election to Remove Oakland Mayor Front Page | Police State and Prisons | Racial Justice | Health, Housing, and Public Services | East Bay | Government & Elections10/02/16 Historic California Law to Rein in Asset Forfeiture Abuse, Paving Way for Other States Front Page | Police State and Prisons | Drug War | California | Government & Elections
Related Categories: Iraq | Anti-War | Front Page
Class War 03/2016: IRAQ 1991 – Class war and bourgeois containment CLASS WAR (2 comments) Tuesday May 17th 8:49 AM
‘I Escaped Isis Rapists, But Was Forced To Leave My Baby Behind’ Iraq Solidarity News (Al-Thawra) Thursday Mar 17th 2:07 AM
Eric See of Peace Action West talks on 'Who's who in Iraq and Syria' Unitarian Universalists of San Mateo Wednesday Feb 10th 12:22 AM
Iraq risks losing generation due to lack of schools, healthcare Iraq Solidarity News (Al-Thawra) Sunday Jan 3rd 3:28 AM
Support is flooding in for an Assyrian church's reopening in Baghdad Iraq Solidarity News (Al-Thawra) Friday Nov 6th 10:19 AM
Iraq: Where Are We, and Where Are We Going? Stephen McNeil Saturday Mar 21st 12:46 AM
More News...