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Monday, January 11, 2010

If Barack Obama is such a bleeding heart liberal, why is Blackwater about to get another contract?
Posted by Jill | 4:50 AM
Here's another reason we on the sane side of the political spectrum are exasperated with Barack Obama, and another reason we scratch our heads at this notion on the right that he's some kind of dirty fucking hippie pacifist:
Blackwater Worldwide's legal woes haven't dimmed the company's prospects in Afghanistan, where it's a contender for an important role in the U.S. strategy for stabilizing the country.

Now called Xe Services, the company is in the running for a Pentagon contract potentially worth $1 billion to train Afghanistan's troubled national police force. Xe has been shifting to training, aviation and logistics work after its security guards were accused of killing unarmed Iraqi civilians more than two years ago.

Yet even with a new name and focus, the expanded role would seem an unlikely one for Xe because Democrats have held such a negative opinion of the company following the Iraqi deaths.

During the White House campaign, then-Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, now President Barack Obama's secretary of state, backed legislation to ban Blackwater and other private security contractors from Iraq.

Xe eventually lost its license to operate as guardian of U.S. diplomats in Iraq. Clinton's State Department decided not to rehire the company when the contract expired in 2009. Delays in getting a new company in place led to a temporary extension of that contract.

A federal judge on New Year's Eve dismissed criminal charges against five of the Blackwater guards, citing repeated missteps by federal prosecutors. The Iraqi government has promised to pursue the case, a new strain on relations between the U.S. and Iraq.

Xe on Wednesday reached a settlement in a series of civil lawsuits in which dozens of Iraqis accused the company of cultivating a reckless culture that allowed innocent civilians to be killed. On Thursday, however, two former Blackwater contractors were arrested on murder charges in the shootings of two Afghans after a traffic accident last year.

Despite the scrutiny, the U.S. relies heavily on Xe (pronounced "zee") for support in Afghanistan; the workload may grow significantly.

STILL we're fighting wars with a largely mercenary army. STILL we're giving taxpayer money to the Christian Crusaders who run Blackwater/Xe. STILL we're trying to make war invisible to Americans by letting them keep their sons at home.

If Barack Obama thinks this is going to shut people like Rudy Giuliani and Dick Cheney up, he'd better guess again. What it WILL do is guarantee that the people who bought all that "hope and change" crap are going to sit on their hands when it comes time to decide to keep him in the White House.

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Anonymous vitamin d said...
Blackwater has been a contractor in the past with the department and could certainly be in the future," said the U.S.’s top-ranking military officer, General Peter Pace, at an afternoon press conference.

Blogger Barry said...
Near as I can tell, he's only liberal (even remotely) on the economic issues.