June 6, 2009 1:59 PM Subscribe
Jeremy Scahill talked with Bill Moyers recently
posted by ornate insect (10 comments total)
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about the continued role and increasing centrality of private military contractors in Afghanistan and Iraq, the use of military drones, and other issues related to these two ongoing wars.
According to Jeremy Scahill
, newly released Pentagon statistics show that in both Iraq and Afghanistan the number of armed contractors is rising
, and that contractors (armed and unarmed)* now make up approximately 50% [of the total force].
Yet, since these numbers relate explicitly to DoD security contractors, [and since] companies like Blackwater and its successor Triple Canopy
(more on them here
) work on State Department contracts...it is unclear if these contractors are included in the over-all statistics.
In other words, the numbers could be higher.
Questions of statistics aside, the larger questions--of whether the increasingly privatized US military could even function without contractors
, and the degree to which the systematic reliance on contractors
has become business as usual
--remain. The "complex" is alive and well
(*I'm not sure the significance of this distinction, since presumably even contractors not engaged in combat or security are also armed.)