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12/11/2009

Comments

Rick Parris

i'm sorry. is the obama administration still contracting with blackwater (now Xe) ?

just because there are maladjusted, wrongheaded americans does that make america evil?

the bush administration made some bad, stupid, maybe criminal moves... but even they were not exactly evil. they had good intentions (which the road to hell is paved with so they say) and their motives were, generally, pure.

americans were stupid to elect GWB, stupider for re-electing him (though the real fears of 9/11 still hung around their necks), this is true. but once he was elected and his administration took action, it became a part of american history. it became a part of our national heritage. like it or not. we elected him. he's our president.

it may have been possible for a new president to immediately reverse every bad decision the previous administration made... but i doubt it is likely, nor is it wise in every case. obama has to play the hand the american people dealt him. he's got to maintain continuity and iron out the wrinkles left by his predecessor.

to do otherwise would make america look as unpredictable as a pinball careening from the left to the right every 4-8 years.

but to conflate obama's handling of inherited wars and the perversions of blackwater is a weird intellectual leap.

dvalentino

I am not now, nor have I ever been, a fan of either Erik Prince or Blackwater. I find private armies abhorrent. Therefore I read, or actually I tried to read Scahill's book. I couldn't couldn't finish it. I found it to be a biased piece of crap written by a pathological hater of Erik Prince and Blackwater. He certainly set honest reporting back a few decades.

Joe Ermigiotti

At what point do you stop getting a free pass for (supposedly) pure motives?

Joe Ermigiotti

I have no problem with your assessment of Blackwater at all. I would just point out that technically regular US soldiers go to war for money and have also been accused of murder and torture and have obviously caused large numbers of civilian deaths. I agree that there's some distinction between the contractors and the regular military; I'm just not sure how much of one.

Rick Parris

who gets a free pass for pure motives? who says that they should? not me. if behavior is criminal it should be prosecuted. if, or when, the world court decides to grab a former president (or a current one) and they can convict, they should. i don't think any serious person believes GWB or any of his administration's acts rise to that level.

and it doesn't matter, america rejected that administration and it's party. we elected a new guy who, while he has to offer respect to his predecessors, has been actively showing the world that we're not on that same path.

markbolton

"i’m sorry. is the obama administration still contracting with blackwater (now Xe)?"

YES! http://www.thenation.com/directory/bios/jeremy_scahill
Sadly, Scahill is the only one paying attention to this horror.

Rick Parris

where in your link is there any evidence that the obama administration is contracting with Xe?

Joe Ermigiotti

You’re attempting to downplay the Bush administration’s criminal behavior by saying that their motives were pure. When your actions result in the deaths of thousands of innocent people, I don’t think it matters much what your intentions were. Plenty of serious people believe the Cheney-Bush administration’s acts rise to that level; they’re just not naïve enough to think that the world court would ever attempt to prosecute them. The only people who get prosecuted by the world court are leaders of third-world regimes that the U.S. considers illegitimate. The idea that international law applies equally to everyone is a joke.

And it doesn’t matter that America “rejected” the Bushites and their party; U.S. foreign policy is the same no matter which half of the duopoly happens to be running the country at any given time. You can’t be serious that Obama is showing the world that we’re not on the same path. How, by sending 30,000 more troops to Afghanistan? This just proves my point.

bobshanbrom

How is Blackwater any different from the death squads that (we) used to operate in El Salvador and Guatemala?
And as to Christianity vs. Islam, a Libyan friend tells me that anyone who doesn't love Jesus cannot consider themselves a Muslim. I think you should drop the capital C when referring to those who hijack Jesus' message of alternatives to violence, universal love and forgiveness. Try "christianity" or "C/christianity". Perhaps "Hijackers" is the better term.

Rick in VA

turns out the CIA IS still contracting with Xe. No one replying to this post found it but i ran across it on BBC yesterday. here's the link...

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/8409358.stm

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