Friday, August 7, 2009

Eric Prince's Blackwater: Christofascism At Work

“...encouraged and rewarded the destruction of Iraqi life"

It's a tale of power, deceit, murder of innocents, illegal arms smuggling, and religious intolerance. In other words, it's business as usual for Blackwater's Erik Prince. When you have a billionaire father who co-founded Family Research Council, you've just got to prove your worth by killing as many infidels as possible. But first you become: a volunteer firefighter, a pilot (at 17), a White House Intern (under George H.W. Bush), a Navy SEAL, a campaigner for Pat Buchanan BEFORE you inherit over a billion dollars and start a "man's man" mercenary army. (BTW: My own name, VOJIR, has a similar meaning in Czech, only my dad preferred to interpret it as "soldier of fortune.")

Last Monday, Erik Prince was named in two sworn affidavits as the enabler of Iraqi civilian deaths and the chief motivator for several murders of Blackwater employees.

The Nation: , Jeremy Scahill August 4, 2009

A former Blackwater employee and an ex-US Marine who has worked as a security operative for the company have made a series of explosive allegations in sworn statements filed on August 3 in federal court in Virginia. The two men claim that the company's owner, Erik Prince, may have murdered or facilitated the murder of individuals who were cooperating with federal authorities investigating the company. The former employee also alleges that Prince "views himself as a Christian crusader tasked with eliminating Muslims and the Islamic faith from the globe."

In their testimony, both men also allege that Blackwater was smuggling weapons into Iraq. One of the men alleges that Prince turned a profit by transporting "illegal" or "unlawful" weapons into the country on Prince's private planes.

The Times -London:
In one of the statements, John Doe 2, who worked for Blackwater for four years, alleged that Mr Prince “views himself as a Christian crusader tasked with eliminating Muslims and the Islamic faith from the globe” and that his companies “encouraged and rewarded the destruction of Iraqi life”.

Also in the Times article:

Several knowledgeable friends, who did not wish to be identified discussing private conversations, say Prince talked about his reverence for the continuity of the Catholic Church, his desire to go to mass every morning and his appreciation of confession.

From the testimony of a former employee:

"On several occasions after my departure from Mr. Prince’s employ," he says, "Mr. Prince’s management has personally threatened me with death and violence.
And on the persecution and targeting of Iraqis:

"To that end, Mr. Prince intentionally deployed to Iraq certain men who shared his vision of Christian supremacy, knowing and wanting these men to take every available opportunity to murder Iraqis. Many of these men used call signs based on the Knights of the Templar, the warriors who fought the Crusades."

Another article described Erik Prince succinctly:
"Theocon" with a Christian-supremacist agenda.
In the past, Prince has hired some heavy-duty defense lawyers, including former independent counsel Ken Starr. When he's not running a school for Christian Commandos, Prince's extra-curricular activities include:

Philanthropy: over $1.3 million to Family Research Council and Focus on the Family and undisclosed sums to the Alliance Defense Fund, an evangelical legal group founded (and staffed by) Pat Robertson.

Community Service: on the board of Christian Freedom International, a non-profit group with a mission of helping "Christians who are persecuted for their faith in Jesus Christ."

Politics: A major player among donors to the Republican Party.

Rep. Dennis Kucinich:
"Blackwater is a law unto itself, both internationally and domestically. The question is why they operated with impunity. In addition to Blackwater, we should be questioning their patrons in the previous administration who funded and employed this organization. Blackwater wouldn't exist without federal patronage; these allegations should be thoroughly investigated," Kucinich said.
Could that mean Dick you-know-who? Heavens!

Blackwater recently changed its name and logo to Xe. It's trying to distance itself from its image, but it still is the largest of the U.S. State Department's three private security contractors. At least 90 percent of the company's revenue comes from government contracts, of which two-thirds are no-bid contracts.

And Dick Cheney had a veritable love affair with companies and no bid contracts.