Blackwater aids US covert assassination, kidnapping ops

Jeremy Scahill

Jeremy Scahill

Private mercenary firm Blackwater (recently renamed Xe) is part of a covert US program in Pakistan that includes planned assassinations and kidnappings of Taliban and al-Qaeda suspects. Investigative journalist Jeremy Scahill published earlier this week in The Nation magazine an in-depth study of the controversial firm’s role in the outsourced operation, which was first revealed by The New York Times and The Washington Post last August (see previous intelNews commentary). The close operational association between US Special Forces, the CIA, and the private mercenary firm is well known, largely thanks to Scahill’s prior work. But the journalist now claims that Blackwater/Xe’s work in the covert operation in Pakistan is so secretive and compartmentalized that “senior figures within the Obama administration and the US military chain of command may not be aware of its existence”. Scahill’s article for The Nation is located here. The journalist also gave an extensive interview about the story to Democracy Now!, which can be watched here.

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Expert news and commentary on intelligence, espionage, spies and spying, by Dr. Joseph Fitsanakis and Ian Allen.

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