- 21.01.10 10:44
A just-released US State Department Inspector General's report [PDF] on Blackwater's work in Afghanistan reveals that Blackwater is proposing increasing its private armed forces in Afghanistan, particularly in Mazar-e-Sharif and Herat where the US is opening consulates. Blackwater is currently in the running for a $1 billion contract to train Afghanistan's national police force.
In general, the report praises Blackwater's work in protecting US diplomats and aid officials, saying its "personal protective services have been effective in ensuring the safety of chief of mission personnel in Afghanistan's volatile and ever-changing security environment." The Inspector General, however, criticized Blackwater for providing "inappropriate" training for its Afghanistan personnel pre-deployment, saying "before arriving in the country, personal security specialists did not receive a speciﬁc type of security training unique to operating in the Afghanistan environment," saying that "rather than taking courses in cultural awareness for Afghanistan, the specialists had been trained in Iraq cultural awareness."
The IG's report, which was completed in August, makes no mention of the May 2009 incident where Blackwater operatives allegedly killed two Afghan civilians sparking their arrest in the US on murder charges. That could be because those men worked on a Department of Defense training contract (not a State Department diplomatic security contract) for Blackwater subsidiary Paravant. Blackwater works for multiple federal agencies in Afghanistan. The IG's report focuses on the work of Blackwater's recently renamed US Training Center (USTC). "No one under U.S. Training Center's protection has been injured or killed, and there have been no incidents involving the use of deadly force," according to the report. The report was released before the December 30 suicide bombing of the CIA station in Khost, Afghanistan where at least two Blackwater operatives were killed while reportedly doing security for the CIA.
Les mer hos CommonDreams.org