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(SUBMISSION) Bush's secret private army (moved from ATSNN)

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posted on Jun, 10 2004 @ 03:45 AM
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Shocking article about the size of the Private military in Iraq funded by the US on Jane's website


Bush's secret army - The USA hires contract soldiers to fight in Iraq

After the US government, who is the biggest single military contributor to the occupation of Iraq? Not Britain - as official figures claim - but private military companies. Over 10,000 men and women perform various jobs under contract to the military in Iraq we have been told. Furthermore, official US government figures indicate that out of a total US$85bn allocated by the USA for military operations in the Middle East this year, over a third will go to private contractors. A reality check: this figure is greater than the defence budgets of most countries.

The transfer of jobs performed by the military to private companies has a long history and is justifiable. Governments have a duty to get value for their taxpayers' money and many support jobs, such as providing logistical back-up in the form of transport, catering or housing, is best left to the private sector. Furthermore, a great deal of the military expenditure in purchasing new weapons actually goes on maintenance and technological upgrades.

How does this work in Iraq? When the USA launched its invasion last March, its battleships included civilians, operating some of the world's most sophisticated weapons systems. Unmanned Predator drones, the Global Hawks, and the B-2 stealth bombers went into action with weapons not only maintained, but actually operated by civilians.

The private sector became even more deeply involved in the war's aftermath. A US company has the lucrative contract to train the new Iraqi army; another to recruit and train an Iraqi police force. And even the life of the USA's chief civilian administration in Iraq, Paul Bremer, is usually protected by a private company, rather than conventional US troops.

A US-based company is providing patrols throughout Iraq and its arsenal ranges from M4 assault rifles to 20mm cannons mounted on its own helicopters. The company operates firing training ranges in the USA and actively recruits for what, to all intents and purposes, is now a private army. It is all perfectly legal.




posted on Jun, 10 2004 @ 12:29 PM
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For me this is good and bad. The professional soliders from these private companies are probably better trained and more willing to be there than the unfortunate 18 years who joined thinking there would never be a war. My only reservation is who do these troops answer to? Do they get their orders directly from central command or are they allowed to operate as they see fit? I would not want to see another torture scandal break out and have the government pass the buck and say they were just contracted mercenaries.



 
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