Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Hillary Clinton's Statement on the Use of Blackwater

It's been months since I've spoken about our dear friends at Blackwater Worldwide (formerly Blackwater USA). So it's high time to rectify that oversight.

Last week author Jeremy Schahill wrote an article, "Obama's Mercenary Position"
for TheNation.com, which reported "A senior foreign policy adviser to leading Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama has told The Nation that if elected Obama will not 'rule out' using private security companies like Blackwater Worldwide in Iraq."

It further states: " The adviser also said that Obama does not plan to sign on to legislation that seeks to ban the use of these forces in US war zones by January 2009, when a new President will be sworn in. Obama's campaign says that instead he will focus on bringing accountability to these forces while increasing funding for the State Department's Bureau of Diplomatic Security, the agency that employs Blackwater and other private security contractors."

Mr. Schahill states that at the time that his article was initially published he had not received an update from Senator Clinton's office. However, he has now added the following update to the article:

Update from Jeremy Scahill: A day after this story went live on TheNation.com, Senator Hillary Clinton, whose staff refused for a week to answer my questions about her position on private security forces, released a statement announcing that Clinton is now co-sponsoring legislation to "ban the use of Blackwater and other private mercenary firms in Iraq," saying, "The time to show these contractors the door is long past due." Read her full statement here.

Amazingly I don't recall hearing one mention of this story during any of the primary coverage that I watched. Of course, I don't watch Fox News and due to the repetitiveness of much of the other coverage I've started to tune out. But I'm sure that my ears would have perked up if I had heard a mention of "Blackwater". And I'm sure that my ears wouldn't have been the only ones.


It probably wouldn't have mattered to voters in Texas, Ohio, Vermont or Rhode Island. And, the State Department will probably be able to control Blackwater.

What do you think?

Related posts:

Immunity for Blackwater

If The Iraqis Hate Them & The Troops Don't Like Them, Why Are They There?

Why Would Blackwater Need Silencers to Protect Diplomats?

Use of Contractors by the US State Department Has Soared

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