Monday, June 11
Jeremy Scahill: Dems Disingenuous in Iraq Withdrawal Plan
Jeremy Scahill is an investigative journalist at The Nation and correspondent for Democracy Now!. In May, The Nation Institute published his book Blackwater: The Rise of the World's Most Powerful Mercenary Army, a dark parable on the Defense Department's burgeoning three-quarters of a billion dollar mercenary army effectively exempt from congressional oversight or compliance with the Uniform Code of Military Justice.
During Scahill's publicity tour to promote the book, he appeared on Comedy Central's Daily Show with Jon Stewart, dropping some zingers on Blackwater and the missing oversight by the Democrat-controlled congress.
- While Chile refused to join the White House's "coalition of the willing" to wage a war of aggression on an Iraq decimated by twelve years (1991-2003) of US-led economic sanctions, 750 Chilean mercenaries--some who served under General Augusto Pinochet to prop up his dictatorship--are Blackwater mercenaries.
- In Iraq, Blackwater mercs make $30,000 a month--roughly the annual pay of a U.S. soldier on the ground in the war zone.
- House Democrats, empowered by running anti-war campaigns to garner votes from the American majority opposing the war that has doubled since the March 2003 invasion, purposely omitted contract soldiers from negotiations with the White House on troop withdrawal from Iraq.
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