Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Outsourcing in Iraq

Today the House Government Reform Committee heard testimony from family members of the four Blackwater contractors killed in Fallujah in 2004. Also testifying today were officials from the Department of Defense and representatives of the various private security firms (including Blackwater). Tonight the PBS Newshour ran a very good segment on the use of private military firms in Iraq. The transcript is available here.

Perhaps the most interesting point in Gwen Ifill's conversation with Robert Young Pelton, author of Licensed to Kill: Hired Guns in the War on Terror, and Doug Brooks, president of the International Peace Operations Association, was Brooks' admission that private security contractors face very little accountability for their actions in Iraq and that better means for ensuring accountability are needed.

Maybe. Or maybe we just shouldn't be relying so heavily on private military firms.