Blackwater has new names and a quarter billion from its current US sugar daddy
By Brenda Norrell
The Obama Administration has granted a quarter billion dollars in new contracts to Blackwater, whose operatives committed murder in Iraq. Blackwater renamed itself XE and is now also working under the names of US Training Center and Greystone LTD.
US Training Center is now recruiting online for military and law enforcement to serve as "mentors" to the Afghanistan Border Police, Afghan Police, Afghan Preventive Medicine and other positions, according to the XE website.
"We are seeking senior military and law enforcement professionals to provide individual mentoring services to the executive leadership of various government department heads of the Government of Afghanistan."
Along with mentor positions, XE is seeking contractors for hire as "Narcotics Interdiction Unit/ Operational Support Team Medic."
Jeremy Scahill exposes Blackwater's new contracts in the article, "Blackwater's New Sugar Daddy: The Obama Administration," in The Nation.
"Over the past two weeks, the Administration has awarded nearly a quarter billion dollars in new US government contracts to Blackwater to work for the State Department and CIA in Afghanistan and other hot zones globally," Scahill said.
Scahill names the lobbyist.
"No one is paying any attention to what should be a major part of the story of Blackwater's thriving second marriage to the current Administration: the money trail. Blackwater has spent heavily this year on lobbyists—particularly Democratic ones. In the first quarter of 2010, the company spent more than $500,000 for the services of Stuart Eizenstat, a well-connected Democratic lobbyist who served in the Clinton and Carter administrations. Eizenstat heads the international practice for the powerhouse law and lobbying firm Covington and Burling."
The London Guardian today reports the concern of Congress.
Congressman Jan Schakowsky said: "I'm mystified why any branch of the government would decide to hire Blackwater, such a repeat offender. We're talking about murder … a company with a horrible reputation that really jeopardises our mission in so many different ways."
XE's Greystone security company states it is located in Nairobi, Kenya, Abu Dhabi UAE, Bridgetown, Barbados and Moyock, North Carolina.
Scahill writes that Blackwater owners Erik Prince also owns a private intelligence company, Total Intelligence Solutions. Writing in the The Nation article, "Blackwater for Sale," Scahill said Greystone is an offshore mercenary operation. Prince also owns a construction company, Raven Development and Paravant, which has been used as a shell company to win training contracts in Afghanistan.
The murders committed by Blackwater were documented in Iraq. After Hurricane Katrina, the Bush Administration sent Blackwater into New Orleans.