Corporate Armies

Yesterday, in The New York Times, it was revealed that the UAE (the United Arab Emirates) have hired the services of a private army, run by Erik Prince, a Christian Fundamentalist and the billionaire founder of Blackwater, a private military corporation. The Emiratis have paid $529 million dollars for this secret army, apparently to respond to terrorist attacks, uprisings amongst the countries largely foreign workforce and to defend themselves against Iran.

 and  write: “The force is intended to conduct special operations missions inside and outside the country, defend oil pipelines and skyscrapers from terrorist attacks and put down internal revolts, the documents show. Such troops could be deployed if the Emirates faced unrest in their crowded labor camps or were challenged by pro-democracy protests like those sweeping the Arab world this year.”

You can read the full article on this in the New York Times here.

Blackwater Mercenaries in New Orleans

Mercenaries are not a new phenomenon, their use is as old as war itself. Neither is American security investment in the Oil states or wartime contracting. But something really troubled me about this news, particularly in the wake of watching The Corporation, a documentary on the psychopathic nature of big businesses, and their pathological pursuit of profit and power (see Matt Jones’s article on this here). It may seem like the dystopic fantasy of a science fiction geek, but we may only be a few years away from the corporations tooling up. Currently the military-industrial complex is armed by the state, governments are in the hands of big business, and corporations can get governments to do their dirty work – those caught in the crossfire are considered ‘externalities’. But what if this was to change? The corporations would seek to defend themselves without the aid of powerful western governments. Companies akin to Blackwater could provide the firepower, and war itself could be privatized. This may not be that dissimilar to what is happening on the ground as we speak – in exactly whose interests is it that we have troops across the Middle East – who benefits from this? The difference is, our governments are supposedly still accountable.

As our precious fossil fuels gradually run out, the scrabble for the last remains of these dwindling resources is bound to get messy. And if corporations can fight these “resource wars” without the armed support of national governments, it removes any accountability for that military action – you can’t vote a CEO out of office  – who would be liable? I realise that a lot of this is conjecture, but we need to look into these sorts of possibilities now, to prevent them from happening, especially in the light of this latest development, as it appears these sorts of deals are already going on behind closed doors.

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3 Comments

  1. Blackwater were resposible for atrocities in Iraq: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blackwater_Worldwide

    More here:
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/7000645.stm

    http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=6849

    This shit is well publicised… why is there not a public outcry???
    Private armies like this could sound a death knell for freedom and civilization.

  2. I was surprised when I found out Private Military Corps. were rea lwhen I heard about them getting injured, attacked, etc in news reports pretty early on in the Iraq war. It’s a pretty crazy concept like a hyped up version of a security guard, you think something can be done to combat it?

    You might wanna poop yourself when ads like these start appearing on TVs


  3. Yeah, Blackwater and private armies such as Blackwater are a scary, freakish development. Especially the prospect of them coupled with corporations whose (ha, is a corporation a “who”?) primary concern is profit and expansion.


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