>Pelton’s "Licensed to Kill"

>A cherished piece of dogma in Patriot circles is fueled by the oath taken by all .mil folks to “protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.”

According to the belief, this oath will cause many US military personnel to act in accordance with their allegiance to the Constitution and thwart tyrannical acts by a future government.

For all I know, that’s exactly what will happen.

It sure would be nice to have friends with neat toys and experience in running same.

But what happens if the shooters in the employ of the .gov are not military, but contractors?

Robert Young Pelton’s Licensed to Kill: Hired Guns in the War on Terror is a must for anyone trying to answer that question. The author takes us inside companies such as Blackwater and Triple Canopy, and outlines why private contractors have such an appeal to bureaucrats like the State Department and the CIA.

I’ll bet you won’t like your conclusions about the future of such operations very much.

UPDATE: Thanks to Wayne, who pointed out the following video clips for your consideration and analysis.

9 responses to “>Pelton’s "Licensed to Kill"

  1. >Given that most American security contractors are former military folks, I don’t think it really makes that much of a difference. These are good, patriotic Americans who have served their country well.

  2. >If you’re suggesting that a mercenary force similar to Blackwater could suppress a legitimate revolution within US borders, I’d only point out that, barring information demonstrating otherwise, the well-established rules and history of COIN warfare apply. If they don’t, I’d certainly like to hear the reasoning behind it.

  3. >It would seem this makes Posse Comitatus a moot point. ( “moot” in the more modern useage)TC

  4. >Agreed, here is a link to some videos of “mercenaries”, they love their work.http://www.wtprn.com/Blackwater.html

  5. >Great linkage. Will amend post later to include this as a hotlink in the main text body.

  6. >I am all for former .mils using their skills and getting well-compensated for the risks inherent in same.I also am not sure that any group (.gov, .mil, or .com) could, over the very long term, suppress a broad-based legitimate insurrection.But I do know that there are people who would want to try to do so.And I also know that there are folks who will choose the silver over the principles.

  7. >Ah, Wayne’s link to videos…I should lend credence to this Scahill guy because…????? It doesn’t take him 30 seconds to describe the head of Blackwater as a “right-wing Christian”. If he’s not idealogically driven, he’s just another “mercenary” himself, of the FUD/hysteria type, who’ve have been around as long as I’ve been alive. If anybody reading this is too young to know, be advised that there’s a profit-driven core of anti-government activism, who’ll go on and on about Praetorian Guards, concentration camps, yadda, strictly for personal gain. Before the Bush Family Evil Empire and Halliburton were building secret concentration camps…Clinton was doing it with the UN. Long before _that_, the threat was guys like Cobray and the gang at Soldier of Fortune, and their ‘secret’ mercenary training camps. And there’s always the “ongoing state of emergency” and “secret Executive Orders” to fall back on if there’s nothing real going on in the world.Sometimes the threats _are_ real (see the FSU and basement bomb shelter kits in the 50’s), but these rah-rah types just change their tune to fit the current administration. One example is a handful of otherwise excellent writers on Waco and Ruby Ridge…who are now full-blown 9/11 conspiracy theorists. Why? On either side of the political spectrum, there’s a core of fanatics who’ll lap up the most outlandish theories and provide a comfy income to anybody willing to pander to their thinking.Anyway, if you find something that isn’t intended for the “God told Bush to invade Iraq” and “Falwell is a bigger threat to America than bin Laden” crowd, hook me up, thanks.

  8. >An addendum to my previous comments:I note with interest that the host site Wayne linked to is We The People radio – I used to listen to them _all_ the time; they used to be pretty conservative. AFter they dropped Johnny Roland and started carrying waaaay too many ads for wierd patent medicines, I just eventually quit listening. But, judging by the ads on the site, they’ve no problem being associated with some seriously out-there 9/11 nuts.And more on Scahill – the ‘fellow traveler’ principle. Chris Hedges sings Scahill’s praises over on TruthOut (radical leftists if there ever were any).Interestingly he uses two of my ‘key’ terms used to spot frothing lunatics: Praetorian Guard (along with a lurid comparison of Blackwater with the real Roman deal) and the ever-popular Radical Christian Right. You know, the ones who’ve been letting the Klan get away with dragging black people to death behind their redneck pickup trucks. (Never mind that the perps actually got the hot-shot on Texas’s Death Row).Anywaaaaay, a direct quote:”He has close ties with the radical Christian Right and the Bush White House.” OMG! Run for the hills! And interestingly, he makes this observation, which may assuage CabinBoy’s original concerns somewhat:”His employees, in an act as cynical as it is dishonest, take an oath of loyalty to the Constitution.” Hhrrrm. Dunno what to make of that. Here’s the link:http://www.truthout.org/docs_2006/060407J.shtmlOh, TruthOut’s been wildly popular over at DemocraticUnderground in the past, but lost some of that sheen when they disappointed too many people with wild predictions of “Fitzmas”, that happy day when the Administration gets frog-marched out of the White House in handcuffs.

  9. >Methinks Scahill protesteth too much. He reminds me of “Mark from Michigan” who warned of black helicopters full of UN troops and internment camps back in the 90’s.Scahill said the leader of Blackwater was “only 37”, and expressed how he thought that was too young to be in charge of an effort this large. How old is Scahill, 25?Does anyone have a link to validate his claim that there is nearly a 1:1 ratio in Mil to Contractors?I personally know a guy who is driving a truck for KBH in Iraq, and he bemoans the fact that “Everyone in this country has a gun, except us”. Weapons are off limits.