Never pass up a chance to sit down or relieve yourself. -old Apache saying

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Blackwater = Murder

State-sponsored terrorism. That's what we in the U.S. are guilty of, by continually employing and protecting Blackwater, now re-branded as "Xe." Why do we need a "private army" like Xe with tanks, bazookas, helicopters and all kinds of weaponry? Are we planning on outsourcing war? Have we already done that?

We had Blackwater in Iraq protecting U.S. State Department officials. Why couldn't our own military do this? How many BILLIONS of dollars has this company skimmed off of the Pentagon budget?

And how can we in the U.S. be any kind of "beacon of liberty" when we allow thugs like Blackwater to operate with impunity? War has become simply a "cover" for all sorts of graft, greed, illegality and other nefarious deeds.

Jeremy Scahill has another explosive story, but I have a feeling that, even if true, and it likely is, this story will go absolutely nowhere. After all, like Obama says, "we need to look forward, not backward." So what if all sorts of bullshit has been perpetrated in our name? Who gives a shit?

Explosive Allegations: Blackwater Founder Implicated in Murder
By Jeremy Scahill, The Nation. Posted August 4, 2009.

Sworn statements filed in Federal Court also allege that Blackwater founder Erik Prince launched a "crusade" to eliminate Muslims and Islam.

A former Blackwater employee and an ex-U.S. Marine who has worked as a security operative for the company have made a series of explosive allegations in sworn statements filed on August 3 in federal court in Virginia. The two men claim that the company's owner, Erik Prince, may have murdered or facilitated the murder of individuals who were cooperating with federal authorities investigating the company. The former employee also alleges that Prince "views himself as a Christian crusader tasked with eliminating Muslims and the Islamic faith from the globe," and that Prince's companies "encouraged and rewarded the destruction of Iraqi life."

In their testimony, both men also allege that Blackwater was smuggling weapons into Iraq. One of the men alleges that Prince turned a profit by transporting "illegal" or "unlawful" weapons into the country on Prince's private planes. They also charge that Prince and other Blackwater executives destroyed incriminating videos, emails and other documents and have intentionally deceived the U.S. State Department and other federal agencies. The identities of the two individuals were sealed out of concerns for their safety.

These allegations, and a series of other charges, are contained in sworn affidavits, given under penalty of perjury, filed late at night on August 3 in the Eastern District of Virginia as part of a seventy-page motion by lawyers for Iraqi civilians suing Blackwater for alleged war crimes and other misconduct. Susan Burke, a private attorney working in conjunction with the Center for Constitutional Rights, is suing Blackwater in five separate civil cases filed in the Washington, DC, area. They were recently consolidated before Judge T.S. Ellis III of the Eastern District of Virginia for pretrial motions. Burke filed the August 3 motion in response to Blackwater's motion to dismiss the case. Blackwater asserts that Prince and the company are innocent of any wrongdoing and that they were professionally performing their duties on behalf of their employer, the U.S. State Department.

The former employee, identified in the court documents as "John Doe #2," is a former member of Blackwater's management team, according to a source close to the case. Doe #2 alleges in a sworn declaration that, based on information provided to him by former colleagues, "it appears that Mr. Prince and his employees murdered, or had murdered, one or more persons who have provided information, or who were planning to provide information, to the federal authorities about the ongoing criminal conduct." John Doe #2 says he worked at Blackwater for four years; his identity is concealed in the sworn declaration because he "fear[s] violence against me in retaliation for submitting this Declaration." He also alleges, "On several occasions after my departure from Mr. Prince's employ, Mr. Prince's management has personally threatened me with death and violence."

Read more about just another one of our national disgraces here.

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