Saturday, April 05, 2008

Iraqi government not happy with Blackwater staying

The US does not appear to respect the feelings of some of those in the Iraqi government when it comes to The U.S. State Department's renewal of Blackwater's contract to provide security. What's at issue here is the investigation into Blackwater killing 17 people, including women and children, last September which has not been finished. Some believe that considering the FBI investigation is still pending that the contract should not have been awarded until answers were given.

In 2007 after the shooting incident, the Iraqi government stated they revoked Blackwater's license to operate in Iraq, but the US State Department stated they received no such notification.

Questions raised in this Time piece still linger:
For Iraqis this is all infuriatingly irrelevant. They look at Blackwater as trigger-happy mercenaries, and Iraqis don't want any armed foreign security contractors in their country. Do we let Iraqi embassy private security contractors race around Washington or New York, machine guns sticking out the window, to prevent carjackings?

Granted, Washington and New York aren't Baghdad. Still, the fact is security contractors are a daily reminder for Iraqis that their country is occupied, and they are second-class citizens. The insult is not just that security contractors are allowed to use lethal force and not worry about going to jail; a Western security contractor will make in a week what an Iraqi might make in a year. Private security contractors are a humiliation equal to the humiliations that provoked the Boxer Rebellion in China or drove Iranians to overthrow the Shah. Security contractors may be keeping our officials alive, but they are not winning the hearts and minds of the Iraqis.

It's evident that feeling still exists...

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