February 24, 2006

Blackwater: Welcome to the machine

In a move right out of 1984, Blackwater USA, the security company that has been a major provider of “private contractor” troops and security experts for missions in Iraq, Afghanistan and most recently New Orleans, announced a new phase in their operation.

Starting in December, they will be providing remote controlled drone airships (see blimps) that will be outfitted with state of the art surveillance and detection technology. The airship will be able to hover for days at a time and furnish command centers with real time information about all activities on the ground.

A second generation of airships will follow that will have the capacity to carry tons of payload.




So it appears that in addition to being one of the world’s premier providers of private armies, Blackwater will be moving into the role of becoming the eyes and ears for big brother. This new capacity will allow them to monitor ground activity, direct their mercenaries, and possibly deliver ordinance, all from a remote, secure station.

And who will be looking after those, who will be looking in on us.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

January 10, 2006

BLACKWATER USA UNVEILS NEW SUBSIDIARY

Blackwater Airships, LLC Is The Newest Addition To The Firm's Security Portfolio

Moyock, NC - The national security of the United States depends upon innovative and flexible solutions in the global war on terror. Blackwater USA, the world's premier security, peace and stability operations firm recently unveiled its plans to create a new subsidiary; Blackwater Airships.

Blackwater Airship's initial focus will be the development and deployment of small remotely piloted airship vehicles (RPAVs) that can operate from 5,000 - 15,000 feet, move and hover, and stay aloft for up to four days. The airships will be equipped with state-of-the-art surveillance and detection equipment that can detect, record, and communicate in real time to friendly forces the movement and activities of terrorists.

Gary Jackson, president of Blackwater USA said, "This project is in keeping with Blackwater's support of peace and security throughout the world."

Follow-on phases of the project will include larger airships that will carry tons of payload in support of remote humanitarian and peacekeeping missions. Blackwater, who is already involved in stability operations throughout the world, continues to innovate in support of peace and security, and freedom and democracy everywhere.

The first Blackwater Airship will be available in December 2006.

Blackwater is committed to supporting national and international security policies that protect those who are defenseless and provide a free voice for all. Other Blackwater subsidiaries include: Blackwater Training Center, Blackwater Target Systems, Blackwater Security Consulting, Blackwater Canine, and Raven Development Group. For more information, please visit www.blackwaterusa.com.

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cross posted from Manning the Barricades


more on Blackwater:

Blackwater IraqFact Profile

Blackwater in New Orleans part I

Balckwater in New Orleans part II

Blackwater takes over Iraqi training

February 01, 2006

When is a hostage not a hostage?


A recently released military memo, dated June 10, 2004 revealed that US occupation forces in Iraq had detained the wives of "suspected terrorists" in order to pressure the suspects into giving themselves up.

The memo released Friday, written by an officer with the Defense Intelligence Agency, complained that on May 9, 2004, he witnessed a U.S. raid team detain a 28-year-old mother from Tamiya, northwest of Baghdad when U.S. forces raided her in-laws’ home. She had three young children, including one who was nursing.

According to the memo:

Her husband was the primary target of the raid, with other suspect personnel subject to detainment as well,"

"During the pre-operational brief, it was recommended by TF (task force) personnel that if the wife were present, she be detained and held in order to leverage the primary target's surrender."

“During my initial screening of the occupants at the target house, I determined that the wife could provide no actionable intelligence leading to the arrest of her husband,” the author of the memo wrote. “Despite my protest, the raid team leader detained her anyway.”

In a separate incident, an officer from the Stryker Brigade of the 2nd Infantry Division in northern Iraq discussed the detention of some Kurdish female prisoners in an e-mail exchange with his commanding officer. In it he mentioned that his commanding general "wants the husband."

The commanding officer reportedly replied back on June 17, 2004; "What are you guys doing to try to get the husband -- have you tacked a note on the door and challenged him to come get his wife?"

The first officer responded two days later that he was getting more information from the women that could “result in getting husband."

Hostage
1 a : a person held by one party in a conflict as a pledge that promises will be kept or terms met by the other party b : a person taken by force to secure the taker's demands
2 : one that is involuntarily controlled by an outside influence

What part of these two actions does not qualify as hostage taking?

When one's actions become indiscernible from those of his enemy, he is no better, and has become what he originally despised. We have become terrorist, and there is no way you could ever convince me to the contrary.


Sources:
Kansas City Star
ABC
Islam Online (Qatar)