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Blackwater Banned In Iraq.....uh hunh

 
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abcar



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PostPosted: Thu Sep 20, 2007 4:00 pm    Post subject: Blackwater Banned In Iraq.....uh hunh Reply with quote

http://bravenewfilms.org/blog/12964-blackwater-banned-in-iraq




From The Independent>

http://news.independent.co.uk/world/middle_east/article2973551.ece

Iraq tells US security company to leave after civilian deaths
By Kim Senguptain / Baghdad

Published: 18 September 2007

The Iraqi government has ordered the American private security contractor Blackwater, which provides protection for US officials in the country, to shut down its operations after its guards were accused of killing 10 civilians and injuring 13 others in Baghdad.

Employees of the company are alleged to have opened fire indiscriminately after a bomb exploded on Sunday in the Mansour district of the city, packed with people shopping for Ramadan.

The Iraqi government's decision, personally endorsed by the Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, is the strongest measure taken yet against private security contractors, who have been repeatedly accused of carrying out unprovoked shootings of Iraqi civilians.

Yesterday, in an extraordinary telephone news conference, the US embassy spokeswoman could not answer whether the company was still working for the Americans inside the Green Zone, or what its legal position was along with similar foreign contractors within Iraq.

The shooting started after a car bomb blast killed two soldiers and lasted for more than 20 minutes, with civilians seeking safety in stores and behind cars. Afterwards the Blackwater convoy roared away from the scene, shoving cars out of their way with their armoured four-wheel-drive sports utility vehicles (SUVs).

Initially, the US embassy said the contractors, who were providing security for State Department officials at a meeting, had reacted after coming under small arms fire. Later, however, it said they had "reacted to the bombing".

The Independent, which was present in Mansour at the time of the bombing and shooting, spoke to Iraqis caught up in the incident who described foreigners dressed in civilian uniforms opening fire without warning from their vehicles at cars and people in the street.

The cancellation of Blackwater's contract to work in Iraq was announced by Jawad al-Bolani, the Minister of Interior. Brigadier General Abdul-Karim Khalaf, a ministry spokesman, said: "The security contractors opened fire randomly on civilians. We consider this act a crime. The investigation is ongoing, and all those responsible for Sunday's killing will be referred to Iraqi justice. We have issued an order to cancel Blackwater's licence and the company is prohibited from operating anywhere in Iraq." Mr Maliki said he unreservedly condemned the "criminal operation" in Mansour and that the security company would be "punished" by having its operations shut down. The Iraqi government ordered all Blackwater employees in the country to leave, apart from those involved in the Mansour shooting who were asked to be kept behind for questioning by the police.

The company has an army of 20,000 worldwide and its own private air force. Four of its contractors were lynched in the town of Falluja in March 2004. Its employees have subsequently faced criticisms over killings of Iraqis including the shooting of a bodyguard of the Vice-President Adil Abdul-Mahd by a Blackwater employee who was said to be drunk, and who was subsequently flown out of the country by his employers before being arrested by Iraqi authorities.

However, the company has been praised by the US ambassador to Baghdad, Ryan Crocker, and the US commander in Iraq, General David Petraeus.

Yesterday, a spokeswoman for the US embassy said: "We take the deaths very seriously indeed. There are many issues to be addressed. We are carrying out our own investigation and we shall co-operate fully with the Iraqi authorities." Asked whether the contract with Blackwater would be reviewed, she said: "This is something we will need to review along with other matters."

Ahmed Ali Rahim, a shopkeeper, who witnessed the Mansour shooting, said: " There have been many such shootings in the past, and no one has ever been punished. This time they just opened fire, I do not know why. There was an explosion near the mosque and everyone became afraid, they were screaming and running. Then we saw these SUVs with foreigners leaning out and firing. I just lay down on the ground until it was over. One young man near me was shot in the leg and he was bleeding."

Muhammed Hussein, whose brother was killed in the shooting, said: "My brother was driving and we saw a black convoy ahead of us. Then I saw my brother suddenly slump in the car. I dragged him out of the car and saw he had been shot in the chest. I tried to hide us both from the firing, but then I realised he was already dead."

Lieutenant Mohammed Khamis, a traffic policeman, heard the bomb go off and saw a building damaged. "It was the National Guard [army] post, people were injured and killed. Then the shooting started and people began to run. The US army came later on and searched some cars. I do not know what happened to the other foreigners in the convoy."

Immune from prosecution?


Private security companies in Iraq have often been accused of being responsible for unprovoked attacks on Iraqis and there is a widely held perception that they are immune from prosecution. In one case the supervisor of a US company said he was "going to kill somebody today" and then shot at Iraqi civilians for amusement, possibly killing one, according to two employees. The company, Triple Canopy, fired the two men who brought an action for unfair dismissal but lost on what was described as " technical grounds". However the jury forewoman accused the company of " poor conduct, lack of standard reporting procedure, bad investigation methods and double standards".

Employees of Aegis Defence Services, based in London and run by the former Scots Guards officer Lt-Col Tim Spicer, left, posted footage on the internet showing company guards firing automatic weapons at civilians. The company later issued a statement saying the shootings were legal within rules of protocol established by the now-defunct Coalition Provisional Authority in Iraq.

--------------------------------------------------------------
http://comment.independent.co.uk/leading_articles/article2976639.ece

Leading article: Mercenaries and murder
Published: 19 September 2007

Has ever a claim of progress been so comprehensively undermined? Last week, the US commander in Iraq, General David Petraeus, gave a startlingly optimistic analysis of the security situation in the country to Congress, a message he repeated yesterday on a visit to London. Yet within days of this first testimony, a key tribal ally of the US, Abdul Sattar Abu Risha, was murdered in a bombing outside his home. And now we learn of a terrible incident on Sunday, in which a private US security company, Blackwater, killed 11 civilians after firing into a crowd in the Mansour district of Baghdad.

The roots of this latest atrocity lie in the aftermath of the initial invasion. After Saddam Hussein's regime was toppled in 2003, private security companies employing ex-servicemen flooded into the country. Blackwater was one of the biggest. It had been employed by the US State Department to guard its officials and diplomats. The rewards have been huge. Blackwater is reported to have a contract worth $300m.

Yet the legal status of these companies is hazy. Their personnel are neither civilian nor military, and they are also, apparently, immune from prosecution. The proliferation of such companies raises some uncomfortable questions about the use of private forces to perform military duties. In another age, former soldiers selling their services would have been described as mercenaries. There is an unpleasant smell of political corruption about their growth, too. Many of these security companies have links with the White House and Congress, the institutions that are funding them.

But most damning of all is what their presence says about the state of Iraq. The US Ambassador to Iraq, Ryan Crocker, spoke of the importance of the role of private contractors before Congress last week. But the fact that these contractors are needed at all shows that Iraq remains deeply unstable. They are doing a job that ought to be the province of the Iraqi army or police. That US diplomats have to rely on what is, in effect, a private army for security, four years after toppling Saddam, shows what a fiction recent claims of Iraq's "progress" are. And bloody episodes like Sunday's are one of the reasons the US presence in Iraq continues to be so resented by the local population.

Now the Iraqi government has revoked Blackwater's licence to work in Iraq and will review the status of all private security firms operating in the country. The US Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice, was busy trying to mend bridges with Baghdad yesterday. But this affair is not merely a condemnation of the use of private contractors. It is a damning indictment of the way the White House has pursued its objectives in Iraq from the start.

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RockDock



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PostPosted: Fri Sep 21, 2007 6:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Apparently they have already been given a "limited" license.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/7006697.stm

Blackwater working again in Iraq

Blackwater provides security to US diplomatic staff in Baghdad
The US security firm Blackwater has resumed limited operations in the Iraqi capital Baghdad four days after a deadly shootout involving the company.
The company provides security to all US state department employees in Iraq.

It had been ordered by the Iraqi government to halt operations while a joint US-Iraqi inquiry was held.

A US embassy spokeswoman said the decision to allow Blackwater to resume work had been taken in consultation with the Iraqi government.

The spokeswoman, Mirembe Nantongo, said Blackwater operations would be limited to essential missions only outside Baghdad's heavily-fortified Green Zone.

'Self-defence'

A separate Iraqi interior ministry investigation has found that Blackwater was "100% guilty" of the incident in which 11 Iraqi civilians were killed.

Blackwater says its guards acted in self-defence, but this has been disputed by Iraqi eyewitnesses.

The interior ministry report, based on testimony from witnesses, concluded that Blackwater guards in Baghdad's Nisour Square started shooting after two mortar rounds landed nearby.

"They started shooting randomly from four positions in the square, killing 11 civilians and injuring 12 others," said interior ministry spokesman Maj Gen Abdul-Karim Khalaf.

"The first one who was killed was a driver who failed to stop and then his wife," Maj Gen Khalaf said.

The report also calls for the lifting of legal immunity for foreign security companies operating in Iraq.

The US embassy said it would not comment on the Iraqi report while its own investigation is under way.

Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Maliki has described the shooting as a "criminal act" and vowed not to tolerate it.

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Peter



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PostPosted: Fri Sep 21, 2007 6:44 pm    Post subject: Doobie as in Brothers and not, well u know.... Reply with quote

Oh Blackwater
keep on shooting
Mesopotamia, will just keep on bleeding

Oh Blackwater
they've got oil
the Green zone refers to the money to be made

Keep on firing those guns
C'mon everyone
everythings gonna be alright

The fires are burnin'
and the congress is learnin'
to get along.....

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abcar



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PostPosted: Fri Sep 21, 2007 7:04 pm    Post subject: Poems by Peter Reply with quote

alright Peter! when is your book of poetry comin' out? Smile
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kathy
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 21, 2007 8:17 pm    Post subject: Erik Prince Blackwater USA mercenary firm Reply with quote

Quote:
Born: 1970
Birthplace: Holland, MI

Gender: Male
Religion: Born-Again Christian
Race or Ethnicity: White
Sexual orientation: Straight
Occupation: Business, Military
Party Affiliation: Republican

Nationality: United States
Executive summary: Blackwater USA mercenary firm

Military service: Navy SEAL Team Officer (1993-96, Bosnia, Haiti)

Erik Prince is a multi-millionaire right-wing fundamentalist Christian from a powerful Michigan Republican family. His wealth came from his father, Edgar Prince, who headed Prince Automotive, an auto parts and machinery manufacturer.

A major Republican campaign contributor, he interned in the White House of President George H.W. Bush and campaigned for Pat Buchanan in 1992, finding time to intern for conservative congressman Dana Rohrabacher as well. Prince founded the mercenary firm Blackwater USA in 1997 with Gary Jackson, another former Navy SEAL.

Prince's sister Betsy DeVos is a powerful conservative in her own right. Married to the son of Richard DeVos (Republican bankroller and co-founder of Amway), she served as chair of Michigan Republican Party in the 1990s.


Father: Edgar Prince (d. 1995, billionaire, started Family Research Council with Gary Bauer)
Mother: Elsa Prince Broekhuizen (Republican Party funder, remarried)
Sister: Betsy DeVos (former chair, Michigan Republican Party, m. Dick DeVos, Amway scion)
Sister: Emilie Prince
Sister: Eileen Prince
Wife: Joan (four children, d. 2003, cancer)
Daughter: Sophia

High School: Holland Christian High School, Holland, MI
University: Hillsdale College, Hillsdale, MI

Blackwater USA Co-Founder and CEO (1997)
Family Research Council College intern
DeVos Family by sister's marriage

http://www.nndb.com/people/926/000117575/

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RockDock



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PostPosted: Fri Sep 21, 2007 8:35 pm    Post subject: Re: Doobie as in Brothers and not, well u know.... Reply with quote

Peter wrote:
Oh Blackwater
keep on shooting
Mesopotamia, will just keep on bleeding

Oh Blackwater
they've got oil
the Green zone refers to the money to be made

Keep on firing those guns
C'mon everyone
everythings gonna be alright

The fires are burnin'
and the congress is learnin'
to get along.....


Your version of Blackwater is so much more "political" than the original! Here is a youtube video of the song for those who aren't familiar with it.

I love your version Peter.

The shit that is going on in Iraq is crazy and all Pelosi can say is something to the effect of, the people don't want to hear about Iraq or our shite President, so Congress will just focus on health care and social services. What a fucking joke she is.

Actually what a fucking joke all the "democracies" in the G8 are!

Anyway, thanks for this one Peter.

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Fuck your yellow ribbon
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Support your troops
Bring them home
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Peter



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PostPosted: Fri Sep 21, 2007 9:22 pm    Post subject: Throw the book at me? Reply with quote

Between me and the Vogons, you would think that there was already enough of that.....but thanks.
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Peter



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PostPosted: Fri Sep 21, 2007 9:25 pm    Post subject: Equilateral beats trilateral any day. Reply with quote

Actually I am not particularly religious in the classical sense but it seems to me that your governmental system is pretty damn near perfect and when you get the balance right, it is pretty phenomenal.

the three branches....the holy trinity....doh!

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RockDock



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PostPosted: Sat Sep 22, 2007 2:33 pm    Post subject: Re: Equilateral beats trilateral any day. Reply with quote

Peter wrote:
Actually I am not particularly religious in the classical sense but it seems to me that your governmental system is pretty damn near perfect and when you get the balance right, it is pretty phenomenal.

the three branches....the holy trinity....doh!


I hope you are joking that it is a perfect system of government. It certainly isn't perfect, nor anywhere near perfect, if you are black, mexican, native indian, or any other minority group. Nor for that matter is it perfect for the crackers or the middle class. No, it is only perfect for the Hiltons, the Rockefellers and the Bushes and their ilk.

For the rest of us, it sucks frankly.

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There are souls in the boots
Of the soldiers America
Fuck your yellow ribbon
If you want to
Support your troops
Bring them home
And hold them tight
When they get here
-Andrea Gibson - For Eli
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Peter



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PostPosted: Sat Sep 22, 2007 4:01 pm    Post subject: The joke may be on you, but that's up to you Reply with quote

On the contrary. Look at the existing governments and their potential. The U.S. system is robust, reliable and representative. Despite all the crap that goes on......it would be a lot worse under any other.
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RockDock



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PostPosted: Sat Sep 22, 2007 5:37 pm    Post subject: Re: The joke may be on you, but that's up to you Reply with quote

Peter wrote:
The U.S. system is robust, reliable and representative.


Tell that to the good people of Florida who had their rights to vote stripped from them, or the people of Ohio whose votes were not counted in the last election. Representative? Hardly. Do you see any "normal joes" in the Senate or the Congress? There are very few Senators or Congresspeople who truly represent their constituents. There are many who "represent" moneyed interests.

Reliable? Who are you trying to kid? The Democrats are the other side of the coin, and Pelosi is showing that face quite well. There is NO choice in elections which is likely one of the main reasons why American voters stay home in droves.

Robust? Not when the Supreme Court is appointed by the President, and they go ahead and endorse a President who is elected by widespread vote fraud.

Not that there are any shining examples of robust, reliable and representative governments that I can think of. The Canadian parliamentary system certainly does not qualify as representative. Not when a mere 30% of the popular vote can see an MP elected.

I am sure that there are some governments that fit the bill, but I can't think of any.

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There are souls in the boots
Of the soldiers America
Fuck your yellow ribbon
If you want to
Support your troops
Bring them home
And hold them tight
When they get here
-Andrea Gibson - For Eli
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abcar



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PostPosted: Sat Sep 22, 2007 5:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Peter wrote:
The U.S. system is robust, reliable and representative. Despite all the crap that goes on......it would be a lot worse under any other.


Your first statement...true in theory, but further than it ever was in practice. Your last... yes, possibly so. Alot worse. But it's gone from bad to hugely worse.

We in the U.S. no longer have representation. Phone calls, letters, emails to our 'reps' get us automated responses with a watered down pre-planned agenda that they justify in vague terms and with a fake earnestness.

I live in California, supposedly a very progressive state... homebase to Pelosi, Boxer & Feinstein..3 women whom you would think 'get it' as far as what most people here want.. But they are as in bed with the PTB as any. They DO NOT represent Us.

And voting? Let's all ROTFandLaughOurAssesOff..all together now!
The PTB allowed the Democrats to win last mid-term, while the People wanted those same Dems to end this war.
What a freaking joke. And Habeas Corpus is still MIA.

Instead we've been bombarded with the 'incessant clamor for health care" advertising campaign (see MichaelC's thread), which, though the lack of a real affordable health system here is a huge problem, the more urgent crisis of the Iraq miasma needs to be stopped and the underlying reasons for invading and occupying there exposed.
Apart from the destruction & poisoning of a country and its society, and the expendability our own military, (on purpose, it seems)... it now makes sense that Blackwater is rising. This has been their big debut in the world, gee haven't they done a great job?

More to come. A Corporate Army, Air Force, Navy & Marines? And any nationality can join. It's a nightmare.

People want this mass slaughter to end in Iraq. At the least they want their kids and spouses to come home in one piece. They at least see that deploying to Iraq is a death sentence to their loved ones anymore.

But until they demand it in a way that cannot be marginalized, and i mean 200 million or more in the streets, nothing will change. Our "system' is fucked up to the core. They need to get out of their comfy suburban homes and get jiggy with it.

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abcar



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PostPosted: Sat Sep 22, 2007 6:01 pm    Post subject: Welcome back Kathy ! Reply with quote

Oh, and I'd like to extend a HUGE Welcome back to Kathy McMahon. You've been missed here Kathy, by most of the veterans here and some of us newer members.

Please show some love for Kathy y'all.. she has been at the forefront alongside Fintan in the creation of this forum and has done much of the research in the early stages of the truth movement, right alongside Fintan.

Soon Fintan will be back more regularly; he has been working a job far from home. But the word is, he is will be able to post and produce as before.

Glad to have you back Kathy girl! [smiley=blond.gif]

Gigi

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Peter



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PostPosted: Sat Sep 22, 2007 7:00 pm    Post subject: Never give in and never give up Reply with quote

The point is that despite the rot that has set in and the crap that goes on....there is hope because your system is the pinnacle in the development of political systems. At least you have that and what is left of the pioneering, innovative American spirit. It should be enough considering people such as yourselves that will take the lead.
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