top
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
09/20/17 Demonstrators in San Francisco Say Net Neutrality Is a Racial Justice Issue Front Page | Racial Justice | Indymedia | San Francisco | U.S.09/09/17 Nationwide Protests Against Trump DACA Action, UC Sues DHS, Colleges Vow Support Front Page | San Francisco | South Bay | East Bay | North Bay / Marin | California | Immigrant Rights | Santa Cruz Indymedia09/08/17 Pajaro Valley Pride Honors and Celebrates LGBTQIA+ Community Front Page | LGBTI / Queer | Santa Cruz Indymedia09/08/17 Nazis Doxxing, Stalking, and Threatening Movement Allies in the National Lawyers Guild Front Page | Racial Justice | Global Justice and Anti-Capitalism | San Francisco | East Bay | Government & Elections | Immigrant Rights09/06/17 MHCAN Faces a Crisis with Police and City Agencies Breathing Down Its Neck Health, Housing, and Public Services | Santa Cruz Indymedia09/04/17 An Open Letter to Oakland's Elected Officials from Oakland Privacy Working Group Front Page | Police State and Prisons | Racial Justice | East Bay | Government & Elections | Immigrant Rights09/04/17 Anarchist Bookfair: Solidarity, Direct Action, Healing, Autonomy, Sabotage, Mutual Aid Front Page | Global Justice and Anti-Capitalism | Indymedia | East Bay | California09/04/17 Repression of Independent Media Won't Silence Us: Not in Germany, Not Anywhere Else Front Page | Police State and Prisons | Global Justice and Anti-Capitalism | Indymedia | International | Government & Elections09/03/17 Corporate Media Attacks Antifa Weeks After Ridiculing Trump for Blaming "Both Sides" Front Page | Racial Justice | Global Justice and Anti-Capitalism | Indymedia | San Francisco | East Bay | U.S.08/30/17 Ripple Effect of Outing David Duke Campaign Contributors Spreads Beyond California Front Page | Racial Justice | San Francisco | East Bay | North Bay / Marin | California | U.S. | Immigrant Rights | Santa Cruz Indymedia08/29/17 Trump's Pardon of Arpaio: "A Dark Day In Our Nation" Front Page | Police State and Prisons | Racial Justice | U.S. | Government & Elections | Immigrant Rights
Related Categories: Iraq | Anti-War | Front Page
Iraqi Kurdistan - A Report-back Peace Action of San Mateo County Thursday Sep 14th 6:59 PM
How Baghdad’s Youth Movement is Uniting A Divided Nation Iraq Solidarity News (Al-Thawra) Friday Aug 4th 3:23 AM
War in Mosul draws to a brutal end Iraq Solidarity News (Al-Thawra) Wednesday Jul 12th 2:42 AM
Thousands of Mosul children in grave danger Iraq Solidarity News (Al-Thawra) Saturday Jun 24th 2:39 PM
The Shortwave Report 06/02/17 Listen Globally! Dan Roberts Thursday Jun 1st 4:59 PM
Chelsea Manning is Free Power to the People (1 comment) Wednesday May 17th 7:37 AM
The Jiyan Foundation, Supporting Survivors of ISIS Terror in Iraq Iraq Solidarity News (Al-Thawra) Monday May 15th 1:33 AM
Imprint of Hope Are Making Iraq Great and Beautiful Iraq Solidarity News (Al-Thawra) Thursday Apr 13th 2:45 AM
U.S. War on Iraq Never Ended Martha Hubert Monday Mar 27th 10:16 PM
ACLU of Northern California Contact Info for SFO Arrivals Affected by Executive Order via ACLU of Northern California Sunday Jan 29th 1:26 AM
More News...