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Originally posted by slackerwire
He believes facts are optional.
Originally posted by Dr Love
I sure hope this thread doesn't die because Blackwater is a sign of our end, it's just a matter of time.
Found this video of Bush completely dodging a question about Blackwater and their impunity. This is really scary folks.
Originally posted by slackerwire
Just as a slight correction:
Security contractors are not mercenaries.
Originally posted by vox2442
What exactly is the difference between a merc and a Blackwater employee?
PMCs are also known as security contractors, although this term usually refers to individuals employed or contracted by PMCs. Services are mainly rendered for other business corporations, international and non-governmental organizations, and state forces.
Private military companies are sometimes grouped into the general category of defense contractors. However, most defense contractors supply specialized hardware and perhaps also personnel to support and service that hardware, whereas PMCs supply personnel with specialized operational and tactical skills, which often include combat experience.
The 1949 Third Geneva Convention (GCIII) does not recognize the difference between defense contractors and PMCs; it defines a category called supply contractors. If the supply contractor has been issued with a valid identity card from the armed forces which they accompany, they are entitled to be treated as prisoners of war upon capture (GCIII Article 4.1.4). If, however, the contractor engages in combat, he/she can be classified as a mercenary by the captors under the 1997 Protocol I Additional to the Geneva Conventions (Protocol I) Article 47.c, unless falling under an exemption to this clause in Article 47. If captured contractors are found to be mercenaries, they are a unlawful combatants and lose the right to prisoner of war status.
1. A mercenary shall not have the right to be a combatant or a prisoner of war.
2. A mercenary is any person who:
( a ) Is specially recruited locally or abroad in order to fight in an armed conflict;
( b ) Does, in fact, take a direct part in the hostilities;
( c ) Is motivated to take part in the hostilities essentially by the desire for private gain and, in fact, is promised, by or on behalf of a Party to the conflict, material compensation substantially in excess of that promised or paid to combatants of similar ranks and functions in the armed forces of that Party;
( d ) Is neither a national of a Party to the conflict nor a resident of territory controlled by a Party to the conflict;
( e ) Is not a member of the armed forces of a Party to the conflict; and
( f ) Has not been sent by a State which is not a Party to the conflict on official duty as a member of its armed forces.
In March of 2004, it was reported that Blackwater had flown a group of about 60
former Chilean commandos, many of who had trained under the military
government of Augusto Pinochet, from Santiago to its training camp in North
Carolina. From there they were taken to Iraq.
In an interview with the Chilean newspaper La Tercera, a former Chilean army
officer, Carlos Wamgnet, 30, who was going to Iraq, said: "We are calm. This mission
is nothing new for us.
"In the end, this is an extension of our military career."
John Rivas, 27, a former Chilean marine, said the work in Iraq would provide a "very
good income" that would allow him to support his family.
"I don't feel like a mercenary," he added. (3)
According to Gary Jackson, President of Blackwater USA,
"We scour the ends of the earth to find professionals - the Chilean
commandos are very, very professional and they fit within the Blackwater
system." he added, "We have grown 300% over each of the past three years
and we are small compared to the big ones'
"We have a very small niche market, we work towards putting out the cream
of the crop, the best." (3)