So the evil empire known around the world as the United States has hired contractors to kill our enemies? And that this was kept secret?!? These guys were hired to collect intelligence and to kill people?!?!?
What evil Bush era mastermind came up with this idea?!?! What an outrage!!
Look folks, the media gets this "Jason Bourne" stuff stuck in their craw from time to time, and you can feel their seething anger in these sniping articles about how awful contractors are; how getting paid to go to war is somehow immoral; how their is no oversight, blah blah blah blah blah.
Paid contractors have been used in every war that mankind has ever waged; this is not something George Bush or any of his staffers came up with. The same goes for Gitmo. Military leaders have constructed prisoner camps outside of their countries before in order to keep their enemies far from their people. That is a part of war.
I am getting tired of hearing left wing reporters, journalists, and writers going on and on about evil contractors on the battlefield, and smearing them left and right. The over use of the words "mercenary," "money," "special operations," "mercenary," "covert," "mercenary" - all in the same sentence together is the vehicle for this task. I once tried reading the book Blackwater: The Rise of the World's Most Powerful Mercenary Army by Jeremy Scahill once, but couldn't get past the third chapter for all the use of the word mercenary; he used it like 300 times in the first two chapters alone.
The thought of making war free from profit is a main tenet of leftist war-making ideology, as with any venture they come up with. The thing is, war is always profitable for somebody, in some way shape or form, otherwise there would be no reason for it. There are things that have to be done, or objectives that have to be met, that conventional troops just cannot be used for. This will never change, and can be expected in wars far into the future.
I found it ridiculous that Scahill noted Blackwater's contract with the State Dept. on providing armed security for diplomats, as that is their bread and butter, and that is something you don't want federal troops doing, and then turn right around and call them mercenaries. The argument was that the Blackwater employees, working in Private Security Details, which amounted to like 98% of what they did, made them outlawish cowboys just itching for a fight; then topping that off with noting how successful they were at the task. It doesn't take a security specialist to notice that if you have an immaculate reputation for PSD, then you're definitely not getting into firefights every day, as that would mean that you actually suck at PSD. Would you want an organization providing security for you if they're shooting all the time? No, right? What made them so successful was that they weren't shooting all the time, and that means that they weren't mercenaries, as mercenaries are specifically hired to shoot people.
We saw this in the movie The Hurt Locker, where some private contractors had captured some dude and, after a sniper starts shooting at them, decide to gun down the the captured dude because they would get money for him dead or alive. This part of warfare somehow amounted to cold blood. Just preposterous.
Jumping back into the article, I found this gem:
Instead, Mr. Pelton said, millions of dollars that were supposed to go to the Web site were redirected by Mr. Furlong toward intelligence gathering for the purpose of attacking militants.The purpose of the web site was to gather intelligence for attacking militants, no? So instead of pissing away millions on the web site, they went ahead and blew up a group of scumbags carrying rockets on a donkey. I see that as a far better use of capital then just letting them wander over into Pakistan where US troops can't do anything about it three days later when they get the intelligence from the website. Of course this is speculation; my point being that just because it's not federal troops doing the killing does not make it immoral. A bomb dropped from a US aircraft while guided by guys who are paid more than an Sergeant is just as ethical as a bomb guided by that Sergeant.
There are tens of thousands of armed civilians on the battlefield on any given day. I would say that all but a handful are the cowboy type, and all of them are necessary.