|US/AFGHANISTAN/PAKISTAN: U.S. Is Still Using Private Spy Ring, Despite Doubts|
by Mark Mazzetti, New York Times
May 15th, 2010
Top military officials continue to rely on a secret network of private spies set up by Michael D. Furlong, despite concerns about the legality of the operation. A New York Times review found Mr. Furlong’s operatives still providing information, with contractors still being paid under a $22 million contract, managed by Lockheed Martin and supervised by a Pentagon office.
|AFGHANISTAN: Policing Afghanistan: How Afghan Police Training Became a Train Wreck|
by Pratap Chatterjee, Tom Dispatch
March 21st, 2010
The Pentagon faces a tough choice: Should it award a billion-dollar contract for training the Afghan National Police to Xe (formerly Blackwater), a company made infamous when its employees killed 17 Iraqis in Baghdad in 2007, or to DynCorp, a company made infamous in Bosnia in 1999 when some of its employees were caught trafficking young girls for sex?
|NIGERIA: Ex-militant leader heads SPDC’s patrol team|
by Chris Ejim, Nigerian Compass
January 8th, 2010
Authorities of Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) have unveiled a new security strategy for securing oil pipelines and platforms within the Niger Delta region. Shell has appointed former MEND militant commander, Eris Paul, and his company, Eristex Pipeline Patrol, to secure oil facilities in the Southern Ijaw area of the Delta.
|AFGHANISTAN: Wackenhut aids inquiry into its Afghanistan contractor|
September 3rd, 2009
This week the Project on Government Oversight released damning allegations of deviant hazing at a camp for security guards in Afghanistan. Sparking questions from the State Department, POGO warned the problems are "posing a significant threat to the security of the embassy and its personnel."
|US: New Hire Highlights Altegrity's Growing Ambition|
by Thomas Heath, Washington Post
August 17th, 2009
For more than 12 years, Falls Church-based USIS quietly scrutinized the backgrounds of individuals who needed security clearance to work in the U.S. government or in the private sector. Now re-named Altegrity, the company has ambitions of securing government contracts for much more than investigation and data-collection.
|US: DynCorp Billed U.S. $50 Million Beyond Costs in Defense Contract|
by V. Dion Haynes, Washington Post
August 12th, 2009
A Defense Department auditor, appearing before the Commission on Wartime Contracting in Iraq and Afghanistan, testified Tuesday that DynCorp International billed the government $50 million more than the amount specified in a contract to provide dining facilities and living quarters for military personnel in Kuwait.
|FRANCE/UAE: Gulf base shows shift in France’s focus|
by Ben Hall and Andrew England, Financial Times
May 25th, 2009
France's new naval base in Abu Dhabi, its first overseas military base in 50 years, has sparked a round of lobbying on behalf of lucrative business for French companies including Dassault, the military aircraft maker, and a consortium of Total, GdF-Suez and Areva, which is bidding to build two nuclear power stations in the UAE. Dassault is hoping to sell as many as 60 of its Rafale fighters to the UAE.
|US: Contracting Boom Could Fizzle Out|
by Dana Hedgpeth, Washington Post
April 7th, 2009
The surge in the U.S. military contracting workforce would ebb under Defense Secretary Gates's budget proposal as the Pentagon moves to replace private workers with full-time civil servants. The move could affect companies such as CACI and SAIC. "We are right-sizing the defense acquisition workforce so we can improve our contract oversight and get a better deal for the taxpayers," said the Pentagon's director of defense procurement and acquisition policy.
|IRAQ: Ex-Blackwater Workers May Return to Iraq Jobs|
by Rod Nordland, New York Times
April 3rd, 2009
Late last month Blackwater Worldwide lost its billion-dollar contract to protect American diplomats in Iraq, but by next month many of its private security guards will be back on the job here. The same individuals will just be wearing new uniforms, working for Triple Canopy, the firm that won the State Department’s new contract.
|UGANDA/IRAQ: Why 10,000 Ugandans are eagerly serving in Iraq|
by Max Delany, Christian Science Monitor
March 6th, 2009
Hired out to multibillion-dollar companies for hundreds of dollars a month, 10,000 Ugandans risk their lives seeking fortunes protecting US Army bases, airports, and oil firms in Iraq for as little as $600 per month. Many are looking to go to Afghanistan as the Obama administration increases contracts there.
|US: Plea by Blackwater Guard Helps Indict Others|
by GINGER THOMPSON and JAMES RISEN, New York Times
December 9th, 2008
On Monday, the Justice Department unsealed its case against five Blackwater private security guards, built largely around testimony from a sixth guard about the 2007 shootings that left 17 unsuspecting Iraqi civilians dead at a busy Baghdad traffic circle.
|IRAQ: Iraq Case Sheds Light On Secret Contractors|
by Siobhan Gorman and August Cole, Wall Street Journal
July 17th, 2008
Court documents and interviews with whistleblowers shed light on persistent problems in the operations of private military and security company MVM, Inc., a top provider of secret security to U.S. intelligence agencies in Iraq and Afghanistan.
|US: Arms Dealer Had Troubled History
by ERIC SCHMITT, The New York Times
June 25th, 2008
When the Army last year awarded a contract worth up to nearly $300 million to a tiny Miami Beach munitions dealer to supply ammunition to Afghanistan’s army and police forces, it was in spite of a very checkered past.
|US: Cover-Up Is Cited on Illegal Arms
by ERIC SCHMITT, The New York Times
June 24th, 2008
A military attaché has told Congressional investigators that the American ambassador to Albania endorsed a plan by that country’s defense minister to remove evidence of illegal Chinese origins on ammunition being shipped from Albania to Afghanistan by a Miami Beach arms-dealing company.
|AFGHANISTAN: Supplier Under Scrutiny on Aging Arms for Afghans
by C. J. CHIVERS, The New York Times
March 27th, 2008
With the award last January of a federal contract worth as much as nearly $300 million, the company, AEY Inc., which operates out of an unmarked office in Miami Beach, became the main supplier of munitions to Afghanistan’s army and police forces. Since then, the company has provided ammunition that is more than 40 years old and in decomposing packaging, according to an examination of the munitions by The New York Times and interviews with American and Afghan officials.
|US: Holes in the Wall
by Melissa del Bosque, The Texas Observer
February 18th, 2008
As the U.S. Department of Homeland Security marches down the Texas border serving condemnation lawsuits to frightened landowners, Brownsville resident Eloisa Tamez, 72, has one simple question. She would like to know why her land is being targeted for destruction by a border wall, while a nearby golf course and resort remain untouched.
|IRAQ: 2005 Use of Gas by Blackwater Leaves Questions|
by JAMES RISEN, New York Times
January 10th, 2008
In 2005 Blackwater accidentally dropped teargas on US soldiers, which has raised significant new questions about the role of private security contractors in Iraq, and whether they operate under the same rules of engagement and international treaty obligations that the American military observes.
IRAQ: Bosses didn't want to expose Iraqi police corruption|
by Henry McDonald, Duncan Campbell and Richard Norton-Taylor, The Guardian
December 24th, 2007
"It appears that ArmorGroup, by taking on extra staff ... and quickly making some redundant, is essentially transferring the risk inherent in such contract work to employees while making fat profits for itself," his MP, Dr Phyllis Starkey, told the House of Commons earlier this year.
|US: Blackwater Mounts a Defense With Top Talent
by John M. Broder and James Risen, NY Times
November 5th, 2007
lackwater Worldwide, its reputation in tatters and its lucrative government contracts in jeopardy, is mounting an aggressive legal, political and public relations counterstrike.
|NAMIBIA: All Hiring for Iraq Halted|
by Brigitte Weidlich, The Namibian
October 16th, 2007
A Namibian labour hire company, which processed the applications of Namibian ex-combatants who wanted to become 'security' guards in Iraq and Afghanistan, has stopped the process.
|US: Chief of Blackwater Defends His Employees|
by John M. Broder, New York Times
October 2nd, 2007
Erik D. Prince, chief executive of Blackwater USA, told a Congressional committee on Tuesday that his company’s nearly 1,000 armed guards in Iraq were not trigger-happy mercenaries, but rather loyal Americans doing a necessary job in hostile territory.
|US: U.S. Contractor Banned by Iraq Over Shootings|
by Sabrina Tavernise, New York Times
September 18th, 2007
Blackwater USA, an American contractor that provides security to some of the top American officials in Iraq, has been banned from working in the country by the Iraqi government after a shooting that left eight Iraqis dead and involved an American diplomatic convoy.
|IRAQ: Will Iraq Kick Out Blackwater?|
by Adam Zagorin and Brian Bennett, TIME Magazine
September 17th, 2007
TIME has obtained an incident report prepared by the U.S. government describing a fire fight Sunday in Baghdad in which at least eight Iraqis were reported killed and 13 wounded. The loss of life has provoked anger in Baghdad, where the Interior Ministry has suspended Blackwater's license to operate around the country.
|CHINA: An Opportunity for Wall St. in China’s Surveillance Boom|
by Keith Bradsher, New York Times
September 11th, 2007
China Security and Surveillance Technology, a fast-growing company that installs and sometimes operates surveillance systems for Chinese police agencies, jails and banks, has just been approved for a listing on the New York Stock Exchange. The company’s listing is just a sign of ever-closer ties among Wall Street, surveillance companies and the Chinese government’s security apparatus.
|IRAQ: U.S. Pays Millions In Cost Overruns For Security in Iraq|
by Steve Fainaru, The Washington Post
August 12th, 2007
U.S. military has paid $548 million over the past three years to two British security firms that protect the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on reconstruction projects, more than $200 million over the original budget, according to previously undisclosed data that show how the cost of private security in Iraq has mushroomed.
|US: As Iraq Costs Soar, Contractors Earn Record Profits |
by Eli Clifton, Inter Press Service News Agency
August 2nd, 2007
In a report to lawmakers earlier this week, the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office found that the war in Iraq could cost U.S. taxpayers over a trillion dollars when the long-term costs of caring for soldiers wounded in action, military and economic aid for the Iraqi government, and ongoing costs associated with the 190,000 troops stationed in Iraq are totaled up.
|US: Blackwater-U. of I. tie|
by E.A. Torriero and Jodi S. Cohen, The Chicago Tribune
July 31st, 2007
The University of Illinois is investigating potential conflicts of interest involving the director of the school's prestigious police-training institute and Blackwater U.S.A., the military contractor.
|US: Blackwater supports inquiry into fatal shooting|
by Bill Sizemore, Virginian-Pilot
July 25th, 2007
After one of his personal bodyguards was shot to death by a Blackwater USA security contractor last Christmas Eve, Iraqi Vice President Adil Abdul-Mahdi assured the U.S. ambassador that he was trying to keep the incident out of the public eye.
|US: 'America's private army' under fire for Illinois facility|
by E.A. Torriero, Chicago Tribune
July 23rd, 2007
Blackwater North, as the North Carolina-based firm calls its new site, is designed primarily as a tactical training ground for domestic law enforcement and contractors. Using civilians schooled in military warfare, the site offers training in weaponry, hostage dealings and terror reaction. Still, the sudden appearance of Blackwater is attracting criticism and questions from miles around. Anti-war activists and locals are wary about the new training site.
|IRAQ: A Private Realm Of Intelligence-Gathering; Firm Extends U.S. Government's Reach|
by Steve Fainaru and Alec Klein, Washington Post Foreign Service
July 1st, 2007
On the first floor of a tan building inside Baghdad's Green Zone, the full scope of Iraq's daily carnage is condensed into a 30-minute PowerPoint presentation. The intelligence was compiled not by the U.S. military, but by a British security firm, Aegis Defence Services Ltd. The Reconstruction Operations Center is the most visible example of how intelligence collection is now among the responsibilities handled by a network of private security companies that work in the shadows of the U.S. military.
|IRAQ: U.S. Security Contractors Open Fire in Baghdad|
by Steve Fainaru and Saad al-Izzi, The Washington Post
May 27th, 2007
Employees of Blackwater USA, a private security firm under contract to the State Department, opened fire on the streets of Baghdad twice in two days last week, and one of the incidents provoked a standoff between the security contractors and Iraqi forces, U.S. and Iraqi officials said.
|IRAQ: Death Toll for Contractors Reaches New High in Iraq|
by John M. Broder and James Risen, New York Times
May 19th, 2007
Casualties among private contractors in Iraq have soared to record levels this year, setting a pace that seems certain to turn 2007 into the bloodiest year yet for the civilians who work alongside the American military in the war zone, according to new government numbers.
|AFGHANISTAN: The Reach of War; U.S. Report Finds Dismal Training of Afghan Police|
by James Glantz and David Rohde; Carlotta Gall, The New York Times
December 4th, 2006
Five years after the fall of the Taliban, a joint report by the Pentagon and the State Department has found that the American-trained police force in Afghanistan is largely incapable of carrying out routine law enforcement work, and that managers of the $1.1 billion training program cannot say how many officers are actually on duty or where thousands of trucks and other equipment issued to police units have gone.
|US: Border Security Contract Goes To Boeing |
September 22nd, 2006
Boeing Co. has been chosen to build a "virtual fence" using sensors and cameras along the U.S. border with Mexico and Canada to help control illegal immigration in a contract projected to be worth up to $2 billion.
|SOMALIA: US accused of covert operations in Somalia
by Antony Barnett and Patrick Smith, The Observer (UK)
September 10th, 2006
Dramatic evidence that America is involved in illegal mercenary operations in east Africa has emerged in a string of confidential emails seen by The Observer. The leaked communications between US private military companies suggest the CIA had knowledge of the plans to run covert military operations inside Somalia - against UN rulings - and they hint at involvement of British security firms.
|US: The Rise and Fall of a War Profiteer|
by Sarah Anderson, AlterNet
July 13th, 2006
Bulletproof vest maker David H. Brooks' reign as America’s most ostentatious war profiteer does appear to be over. On July 10, the DHB Board of Directors issued a terse statement to the effect that Brooks had been put on indefinite “administrative leave” pending the outcome of unspecified investigations.
|IRAQ: Army Cancels Contract for Iraqi Prison|
by James Glanz, The New York Times
June 20th, 2006
The Army Corps of Engineers said Monday that it had canceled a $99.1 million contract with Parsons, one of the largest companies working in Iraq, to build a prison north of Baghdad after the firm fell more than two years behind schedule, threatened to go millions of dollars over budget and essentially abandoned the construction site.
|These Guns for Hire
by Ted Koppel, The New York Times
May 22nd, 2006
Ted Koppel says "There is something terribly seductive about the notion of a mercenary army. Perhaps it is the inevitable response of a market economy to a host of seemingly intractable public policy and security problems."
|IRAQ: Blood is Thicker Than Blackwater|
by Jeremy Scahill, The Nation
May 1st, 2006
For most people, the gruesome killings of four private security contractors were the first they had ever heard of Blackwater USA, a small, North Carolina-based private security company. Since the Falluja incident, and also because of it, Blackwater has emerged as one of the most successful and profitable security contractors operating in Iraq.
|AFGHANISTAN: Blackwater Broke Rules, Report Says|
by Griff Witte, The Washington Post
October 5th, 2005
A private contracting firm flying in Afghanistan for the U.S. military was in violation of numerous government regulations and contract requirements when one of its planes crashed into a mountainside in November 2004, killing all six on board, according to an Army report made public yesterday.
|US: Lockheed Martin Is Hired to Bolster Transit Security in N.Y.|
by Sewell Chan and Shadi Rahimi, The New York Times
August 23rd, 2005
A new world of transit security in New York City began to take form this morning, as officials disclosed plans to saturate the transit system with 1,000 video cameras, 3,000 motion detectors and a wide array of sophisticated gadgets, all intended to buffer the city's subways, bridges and tunnels from a terror attack.
|US: Judge rules in Iraq Whistle-Blower Case|
by Sue Pleming, Reuters
July 11th, 2005
A U.S. judge ruled on Monday that a whistle-blower case alleging fraud against Custer Battles, a U.S. security contractor employed in Iraq could go ahead, but excluded any work paid for with Iraqi oil money.
|US: Whistleblower suit against Custer Battles can proceed|
by Matthew Barakat, Associated Press State & Local Wire
July 11th, 2005
Two whistleblowers who allege that a Fairfax-based contractor cheated taxpayers out of tens of millions of dollars on reconstruction projects in Iraq can proceed with their lawsuit, a judge has ruled. But parts of the ruling could have negative consequences for those who file similar claims against other contractors, according to a lawyer for the whistleblowers.
|Iraq: No Guns for Contractors, Pentagon is Proposing|
by Seth Borenstein, Philadelphia Inquirer
April 29th, 2004
As the insurgency in Iraq remains strong, the Department of Defense has proposed a new rule for most of the estimated 70,000 civilian contractors working in the region: They cannot carry guns.
|IRAQ: 10 US Contractors Penalized
by Matt Kelley, Associated Press
April 26th, 2004
Ten companies with billions of dollars in U.S. contracts for Iraq reconstruction have paid more than $300 million in penalties since 2000 to resolve allegations of bid rigging, fraud, delivery of faulty military parts and environmental damage.
|Iraq: Security Firm Will Hire a Nightclub Bouncer|
by Bernard Ginns and John Bynorth, Mail on Sunday, London
April 18th, 2004
The lives of contractors in Iraq are being put at risk by security firms prepared to employ untrained staff, a Mail on Sunday investigation reveals.
|Iraq: More Limits Sought for Private Security Teams |
by Mary Pat Flaherty and Dana Priest, Washington Post
April 13th, 2004
With an estimated 20,000 private security workers on the ground, the Coalition Provisional Authority is increasingly concerned about the quality of the security teams, the weapons they use and the rules that will govern them after June 30, when the authority transfers political power to an interim Iraqi government.
|Iraq: Security Firms Form World's Largest Private 'Army' |
by Dana Priest and Mary Pat Flaherty, Washington Post
April 8th, 2004
Under assault by insurgents and unable to rely on U.S. and coalition troops for intelligence or help under duress, private security firms in Iraq have begun to band together in the past 48 hours, organizing what may effectively be the largest private army in the world, with its own rescue teams and pooled, sensitive intelligence.
|US: Blackwater Mercenaries Take Risks for Right Price|
by James Dao, Eric Schmitt, and John F. Burns, New York Times
April 2nd, 2004
Here, at the 6,000-acre training ground of Blackwater U.S.A., scores of former military commandos, police officers and civilians are prepared each month to join the lucrative but often deadly work of providing security for corporations and governments in the toughest corners of the globe. On Wednesday, four employees of a Blackwater unit -- most of them former American military Special Operations personnel -- were killed in an ambush in the central Iraqi city of Fallujah, their bodies mutilated and dragged through the streets by chanting crowds.
|Iraq: Trade Fair Postponed Over Security Fears|
by Joshua Chaffin and Salamander Davoudi, Financial Times
April 1st, 2004
The deteriorating security situation in Iraq has prompted the postponement of a US-led trade fair aimed at accelerating reconstruction in the country amid heightening concerns about the safety of foreign civilians working there. Organisers of Destination Baghdad Expo, that was due to begin on Monday, postponed the event following the gruesome killings on Wednesday of four western contract workers in the city of Falluja.
|Iraq: Soldiers of Fortune Rush to Cash in on Unrest
by James Hider, Times (London)
April 1st, 2004
In Iraq, the postwar business boom is not oil. It is security. In a country shaken by guerrilla warfare, crime and terrorism, where the United States is handing out almost $ 20 billion (£11 billion) in reconstruction contracts, thousands of well-armed private security contractors are making a fortune.
|Afghanistan/Iraq: Weary Special Forces Quit for Security Jobs|
by David Rennie and Michael Smith, Daily Telegraph (London)
March 31st, 2004
Exhausted American and British special forces troopers, the West's front line in the war on terrorism, are resigning in record numbers and taking highly-paid jobs as private security guards in Iraq and Afghanistan. Senior US commanders are so alarmed that they have held emergency meetings to agree new deals on pay and conditions for the men.
|Iraq: Parsons Corp. Wins $900 Million Contract|
March 30th, 2004
California's Parsons Corp., one of the most active U.S. companies in Iraq, said on Tuesday it won a contract worth up to $900 million from the U.S. military for security and justice work in Iraq. The privately-owned engineering and construction company said the latest deal includes the restoration and construction of bases for the Iraqi security forces, police stations, border control stations, fire stations, courthouses and prisons.
|Iraq: Global Security Firms Fill in as Private Armies |
by Robert Collier, San Francisco Chronicle
March 28th, 2004
The shootout was just one more example of the behind-the-scenes role played in Iraq by an estimated 15,000 private security agents from the United States, Britain and countries as varied as Nepal, Chile, Ukraine, Israel, South Africa and Fiji. They are employed by about 25 different firms that are playing their part in Iraq's highly dangerous postwar environment by performing tasks ranging from training the country's new police and army to protecting government leaders to providing logistics for the U.S. military. 15,000 agents patrol the violent streets of Iraq.
|Equatorial Guinea: Mercenary Tells How Coup Went Wrong
by Tom Walker, Sunday Times (London)
March 28th, 2004
A former SAS soldier languishing in a Zimbabwean jail has confessed to numerous failures in his attempt to lead a group of mercenaries in overthrowing the president of Equatorial Guinea. In a 13-page handwritten statement, Simon Mann describes how he hoped to convince the Harare authorities to let him and his men pass through Zimbabwe.
|US: Carlyle Stands to Profit from Disaster|
by David Lazarus, San Francisco Chronicle
March 21st, 2004
The Washington investment firm, run by a who's who of Republican heavyweights, including former Secretary of State James Baker and former Defense Secretary Frank Carlucci, has put money into about 300 different companies and properties.
Those investments include United Defense Industries, a maker of combat vehicles, naval guns and missile launchers; and Sippican, a maker of submarine systems and countermeasures to protect warships
|Ivory Coast: British Mercenaries Follow Diamond Money|
by James Astill, Guardian (London)
February 22nd, 2004
Executive Outcomes drew international attention to the industry, worth an estimated £30bn a year in the late 90s, by fighting for the besieged governments of Angola and Sierra Leone. In Sierra Leone the British mercenary company Sandline International broke a UN arms embargo, allegedly with British government approval.
|USA: Spying for Fun and Profit|
by Kari Lydersen, Alternet
May 28th, 2003
Survelliance technologies raise serious questions about invasions of privacy and violations of civil liberties. They also cost a lot of money. Taxpayers fund this massively beefed up security. Private corporations and even individuals are also paying large amounts to boost their own security procedures in light of the war on terrorism. Naturally, someone is also profiting off this boom.
|ECUADOR: Farmers Fight DynCorp's Chemwar on the Amazon|
by Jeffrey St. Clair and Alexander Cockburn, Counterpunch
February 27th, 2002
The International Labor Rights Fund has filed suit in US federal court on behalf of 10,000 Ecuadorian peasant farmers and Amazonian Indians charging DynCorp with torture, infanticide and wrongful death for its role in the aerial spraying of highly toxic pesticides in the Amazonian jungle, along the border of Ecuador and Colombia.
|US: Bush Bans Unions at Justice Department|
by Steven Greenhouse, The New York Times
January 16th, 2002
Invoking security concerns, President Bush has issued an executive order barring union representation at United States attorneys' offices and at four other agencies in the Justice Department.
|US: 'New War' May Shift Defense Spending|
by Gary Gentile, Associated Press
October 1st, 2001
In the nation's "new kind of war" on terrorism, defense spending is likely to focus as much on information and surveillance as bombs and bullets.