Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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January 3, 2007
By: Kevin Drum

CRACKING DOWN ON CONTRACTORS....Over at Defense Tech, P.W. Singer makes an interesting observation:

Not one contractor of the entire military industry in Iraq has been charged with any crime over the last 3 and a half years, let alone prosecuted or punished. Given the raw numbers of contractors, let alone the incidents we know about, it boggles the mind.

The problem, Singer says, is that contractors are the human equivalent of Guantanamo Bay: they aren't subject to the Uniform Code of Military Justice, but prosecutors back in the states aren't really interested in spending time bringing civilian cases against them. So they fall between the cracks, able to do just about anything without fear of being held to account.

But that's all about to change:

Amidst all the add-ins, pork spending, and excitement of the budget process, it has now come out that a tiny clause was slipped into the Pentagon's fiscal year 2007 budget legislation. The one sentence section...[states that the UCMJ] "is amended by striking 'war' and inserting 'declared war or a contingency operation'." The measure passed without much notice or any debate.

....With the addition of just five words in the law, contractors now can fall under the purview of the military justice system. This means that if contractors violate the rules of engagement in a warzone or commit crimes during a contingency operation like Iraq, they can now be court-martialed.

As Singer says, this change is long overdue. Like it or not, Congress doesn't formally declare war anymore, and recognizing that contractors should be subject to the UCMJ even in the non-wars we fight nowadays is just common sense. The vast majority of military contractors may be honest and hardworking, but the military needs a fair and consistent way of dealing with the ones who aren't.

Kevin Drum 8:54 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (61)

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Comments

What's stopping the military from throwing them into Gitmo right now?

Posted by: Boronx on January 3, 2007 at 9:48 PM | PERMALINK

QWSQQWD

New Secretary-General to Fill 2 U.N. Posts This Week, Could Bring Controversy

Posted by: SXQS on January 3, 2007 at 9:49 PM | PERMALINK

With the addition of just five words in the law, contractors now can fall under the purview of the military justice system.

Which is completely irrelevent. The Military Commissions Act of 2006 repealed the right of habeas corpus and limited the right of individuals claiming victimhood to sue in court under the Uniform Code of Military Justice. So even if someone claims he was "wrongfully" killed or harmed by a contractor, the amended Uniform Code of Military Justice gives him no rights to sue the military or the contractor in court.

Al

Posted by: The Real Al on January 3, 2007 at 9:56 PM | PERMALINK

Now, that takes one hell of a plaintiff - One who will stand up in a court of law and aver "I was 'wrongfully' killed".

Real Al, ever hear of the word, heirs?

Posted by: thethirdPaul on January 3, 2007 at 10:05 PM | PERMALINK

Interestingly, it DOES give the administration the power to "disappear" contractors for pretty much ANY reason.

Say, if they're about to blow the whistle on cronyism, kickbacks, and war profiteering?

Just a thought...

Posted by: bleh on January 3, 2007 at 10:10 PM | PERMALINK

Hundreds, if not thousands, of millions of dollars have lined the pockets of defense contractors. They use that money to run their own political machine.

Posted by: Brojo on January 3, 2007 at 10:10 PM | PERMALINK

Wow, Abe Lincoln, representing himself, sure would have torn up that Booth guy in the witness chair.

Posted by: stupid git on January 3, 2007 at 10:11 PM | PERMALINK

If the "clause was slipped into the Pentagon's fiscal year 2007 budget legislation," it pretty much had to be a Republican doing it. Democrats didn't have the power to do something like that. I wonder who it was? I wonder who did it and didn't want it known too publicly?

Posted by: anandine on January 3, 2007 at 10:15 PM | PERMALINK

Looks like Lindsey Graham did it. He's a former JAG and is on the Budget and Armed Services Committee.

Posted by: EJW on January 3, 2007 at 10:20 PM | PERMALINK

My money would be on Graham as the one who slipped it into the legislation. Jag officer, concerned bout contractor abuses on the record, member of Armed Services committee, already has expressed misgivings concerning the prosecution of the war...

Posted by: Global Citizen on January 3, 2007 at 10:24 PM | PERMALINK

Kevin - I'm all for ensuring the contractors are supervised and all the funds are audited and accounted for.

But is this the MOST IMPORTANT ISSUE we face in Iraq?

Posted by: Frequency Kenneth on January 3, 2007 at 10:26 PM | PERMALINK

Apologies - EJW said it forst.

Posted by: Global Citizen on January 3, 2007 at 10:31 PM | PERMALINK

Great minds think alike

Posted by: EJW on January 3, 2007 at 10:33 PM | PERMALINK

"But is this the MOST IMPORTANT ISSUE we face in Iraq?"

Well, If American contractors are committing crimes against Iraqis and getting away with it, it could go partway toward explaining why don't like Americans.

Posted by: cactus on January 3, 2007 at 10:38 PM | PERMALINK

As Singer says, this change is long overdue.

Is this a good deed for which the Republicans should get credit?

Posted by: calibantwo on January 3, 2007 at 10:55 PM | PERMALINK
calibantwo: Is this a good deed for which the Republicans should get credit?
Since it is unlikely that any Democrat would have been allowed to insert anything a Republican bill, it is logical that one anonymous Republican should get moral credit. Posted by: Mike on January 3, 2007 at 10:59 PM | PERMALINK

If only there were some kind of mutual fund that would let me invest in Iraq war profiteering, I'd be on board with it.

Posted by: craigie on January 3, 2007 at 11:22 PM | PERMALINK

"...even in the non-wars we fight nowadays..."

That's pretty funny, Kevin, in an Orwellian way.

Posted by: george hoffman on January 3, 2007 at 11:26 PM | PERMALINK

Ah!
Summertime in Leavenworth!

Posted by: Extradite Rumsfeld on January 3, 2007 at 11:30 PM | PERMALINK

But is this the MOST IMPORTANT ISSUE we face in Iraq?
Posted by: Frequency Kenneth on January 3, 2007 at 10:26 PM | PERMALINK

Yes, you drooling baboon.

The most important issue we face in Iraq, is establishing justice, security, and order. From that, follows peace. From that, follows a return to civility, and even, maybe, people thinking about things other than killing eachother. Things like; Freedom, Democracy, Prosperity.

But if we can't establish justice, (for terrorists, for contractors, for corrupt dictators), then there's really nothing that can be established other than more killing and violence.

And if you cant see that, then I suggest your head is shoved way too far up your ass.

it is logical that one anonymous Republican should get moral credit. Posted by: Mike on January 3, 2007 at 10:59 PM | PERMALINK

and it's incredibly IRONIC that he or she would want to be anonymous for such an honor.

Posted by: Extradite Rumsfeld on January 3, 2007 at 11:36 PM | PERMALINK

Summertime in Leavenworth!

Busting rocks in the noonday sun! A hundred degrees with a heat index of 117 when you figure in the killer humidity.

Posted by: Professor Chaos Switched the Soup on January 3, 2007 at 11:47 PM | PERMALINK

"But is this the MOST IMPORTANT ISSUE we face in Iraq?"

If the greedy hands siphoning out the money to rebuild Iraq had not done so from day one, energy provided, services restored, security enhanced, this war could be in a very different place now. It may not be the most important issue to discuss now, but it is a very important factor in this war and how we got where we are.

Or did you say that to imply that we must identify a singular important topic and discuss that? Because that's inane.

Posted by: BY on January 3, 2007 at 11:50 PM | PERMALINK

Kevin,

Does this mean I can look forward to the court martial of my plumber?

There is still hope for justice in this country.

Posted by: bobbyp on January 4, 2007 at 12:04 AM | PERMALINK

Don't forget that oil companies working in Iraq are immune to prosecution.

No, that's not a joke. Executive order 13303, quietly passed in May 2003, exempts from all prosecution of any sort (1) The Development fund for Iraq and (2) Anyone doing anything related to oil. Look it up. The order itself is short and easy to read.

Posted by: IdahoEv on January 4, 2007 at 12:54 AM | PERMALINK

Like it or not, Congress doesn't formally declare war anymore

This tone is precisely why we are in the mess we are in. Why shouldn't we forbid this kind of pseudo-war in the future? Either Congress declares it, or the C-in-C is responding to an imminent (not possible) attack, or it isn't war.

When did contempt for the Constitution become conventional wisdom? And who benefits? Certainly, not the people.

Posted by: jim p on January 4, 2007 at 1:28 AM | PERMALINK

Off Topic -

But Right On.

One generation is all they need

http://www.thestar.com/sciencetech/article/136744

Posted by: sigh on January 4, 2007 at 2:43 AM | PERMALINK

This should be a national scandal and the average American, including many who post here, act like they know nothing about it. 40 cents of every dollar flowing to Iraq is going to contractors. There are over 100,000 contractors working in Iraq, Kuwait and the surrounding area. Names like Parsons, DynCorp, Custer-Battles and Blackwater should be as infamous as Bonnie and Clyde, since they are by and large, criminal operations, set up to milk and bilk the American taxpayer. Oh, I'm sure many of the people that work for these companies are honest and hardworking, but the owners are friends of the GOP, who see government as just one big cash cow to milk.

To learn more, click here.

Posted by: The Conservative Deflator on January 4, 2007 at 5:54 AM | PERMALINK

But is this the MOST IMPORTANT ISSUE we face in Iraq?

It's amazing how a few mercenaries working for an occupying army engaging in theft, murder, and rape can sour an occupied people against their occupiers.

No point, just sayin'.

Posted by: NBarnes on January 4, 2007 at 6:46 AM | PERMALINK

By the way, Michelle Malkin is in Iraq right now. She is blogging from there and has some interesting things to say.

Posted by: Frequency Kenneth on January 4, 2007 at 8:58 AM | PERMALINK

If only there were some kind of mutual fund that would let me invest in Iraq war profiteering, I'd be on board with it.
Posted by: craigie

That's actually an interesting idea. It would definitely get press.

Posted by: Red State Mike on January 4, 2007 at 10:06 AM | PERMALINK

Now Craigie, let's be serious here.
War profiteering is not, and never has been, intended to benefit the general public.
If you can get an invitation to invest in the Carlyle Group, you can profit. Otherwise you're going to have to pick and choose individual stocks (for those companies publicly traded) like the rest of the middle class schmucks.

Posted by: kenga on January 4, 2007 at 10:20 AM | PERMALINK

Also - something that hasn't been discussed: if military contactors in a foreign country are not subject to UCMJ - ie, they do not fall under the legitimate chain of command - their protections under the Geneva Convention is not clear.

A captured guy in civilian clothes, with a weapon, operating outside of any law? Some might say he's a bandit or looter or maybe a spy - put him against a wall and shoot him. I'm surprised they took so long to clean this up - I was in a conference in 2003 when the US Army was discussing how contractors would be protected.

Posted by: Wapiti on January 4, 2007 at 10:27 AM | PERMALINK

What's the punishment, in the military justice system, for the middle and upper management who cook the books?

Posted by: rewolfrats on January 4, 2007 at 10:29 AM | PERMALINK

What's the punishment, in the military justice system, for the middle and upper management who cook the books?

Promotion to colonel and, if that fails, to general.

Posted by: D'oh Jones on January 4, 2007 at 10:33 AM | PERMALINK

prosecutors back in the states aren't really interested in spending time bringing civilian cases against them.

Actually, no: a case against Custer Battles (I believe) was dropped because a court in the US lacked jurisdiction under the complex legal framework drawn up for the Iraqi transitional authority.

Posted by: ahem on January 4, 2007 at 10:33 AM | PERMALINK

The taxpayer costs of this deficit-financed war, and its continuation are essentially unknown--zillions of dollars? How much lost in graft, deceit, corruption, over-runs, profiteering, lack of oversight and widespread incompetence? Too little too late finally holding individuals accountable. Millions of dollars in Halliburton overcharges hidden from international auditors by the Pentagon, billions for which the Coalition Provisional Authority could not account in Iraq reconstruction funds...the American people deserve the truth.

Posted by: consider wisely always on January 4, 2007 at 10:42 AM | PERMALINK

Trying to define what "profiteering" might be, when a free market based on profit seeking has been basically the driving force behind 90% of all human progress in living standards, becomes a semantic, undisguisedly political exercize.

Take my local gas stations, which raised their prices dramatically a couple years ago when oil prices were steeply climbing. A really obnoxious headline writer could charge them with profiteering because their normal pricing would only allow them one or two cents profit on all the gas on hand in their underground tanks, but some stations raised the price enough to make 75 cents on each gallon.

Is that "gouging?" Not necessarily. It could be that the small owner has been steadily losing money and is unable to sell a money-losing business, so he or she plan to recoup a bunch of their loss in one fell swoop and close up the outlet when the tanks are dry. To me, that is a morally legitimate thing to do. If consumers don't like it they must think that the gods gave them at birth some type of natural right to consume all the petroleum product they want at the price that they want to pay. That's not only socialist thinking, it reflects a sense of entitlement bordering on nasty thievery.

But suppose the gas station does not want to go out of business? Then it has to replace its fuel inventory with a load that may actually cost a lot more per gallon than what the station just charged for the fuel it has just sold. Yes, this happens all the time. Society could dictate that bankers go rich giving gas station interim loans until they sell their recently purchased product at a new price level, but that just adds a structurally inefficient step by creating employment for bankers.

Countries like Venezuela and Iran operate rather like small gas stations, in that they have to replace what they sell today with new production. Unless they invest in oil field infrastructure, however, their daily production just won't last very long. A very good friend of mine (who was a country preacher in Oklahoma for many years) was also a master at maintaining stripper oil wells, which typically produce less than 100 barrels a day. There is an amazing amount of finesse involved in doing this profitably, but socialist governments often have a "rape and run" agenda as bad or worse than the worst of capitalists.

Now, trying to manage an oil field for long-term production in the midst of a two-or-three way war for who will control the profits is about the hardest environment I can imagine in which to make a sane business decision. My gut feeling is that I would rather have any or all Halliburton employees as next door neighbors with their kids going to the same schools as my kids, then have my kids mix with the children of screaming leftist headline writers.

Probably all the contractors in Iraq have made windfall profits on several aspects of their deals. Probably all have lost bundles trying to fulfill other aspects. If they are evil people who belong in prison, well, my feeling is that the Clintons were always evil people financially who avoided prison only by the sharpest of lawyer-neering and courtesy of a dominant media that always stonewalled and apologized for them, when not pre-emptively smearing their critics.

Posted by: mike cook on January 4, 2007 at 10:52 AM | PERMALINK

Geez, can't the liberals simply understand the concepts of "free market capitalism" and that of "caveat solidarius".

It's the 'Merican way - Why good old J. P. Morgan bought defective rifles from an armory for $3.50 and later sold them to the US military for 22 bucks a pop. Many blew fingers off the hands of Northern soldiers, thereby prompting the "soldier beware" concept. A US Judge dismissed charges against Morgan on the grounds of "free market capitalism". However, it was Morgan who later stepped in to personally save our nation's treasury.

So, perhaps Halliburton one day will save us once again.

Posted by: stupid git on January 4, 2007 at 10:57 AM | PERMALINK

Trying to define what "profiteering" might be, when a free market based on profit seeking has been basically the driving force behind 90% of all human progress in living standards, becomes a semantic, undisguisedly political exercize.

Defining "profiteering" is simple -- just look for waste, fraud, corruption, bribery, double-dipping, self-dealing, sweetheart deals. In other words, typical Republican business practices.

Posted by: william cobham on January 4, 2007 at 10:58 AM | PERMALINK

Mike--sorry, but you sound like an apologist for profiteering at taxpayers expense, and just a slight reminder--Bill Clinton hasn't been in office for over 6 years. George W Bush is responsible now.

Posted by: consider wisely always on January 4, 2007 at 11:00 AM | PERMALINK

IIRC, and I don't have the cases handy, the decisions on the applicability of the UCMJ to civilians that prompted the adoption of the Military Extraterritorial Jurisdiction Act of 2000 that (together with scandalous contractor behavior in, particularly, the Balkans) established jurisdiction for federal courts over civilian contractors operating with the military outside of the US rested on both the interpretation of "war" as "declared war" in the statute and independent Constitutional grounds limiting the applicability of the UCMJ to civilians. Changing the statute will not remove any Constitutional bar to military jurisdiction.

Furthermore, I'm not particularly convinced that the right remedy to the Attorney-General and his subordinates not doing their job to prosecute crimes by civilians that are within the jurisdiction of the regular courts of the United States is to transfer jurisdiction over those civilian offenses to military courts. It seems the right remedy for that is to fire—or impeach—the Attorney-General if he can't or won't fulfill the obligations of his office in a satisfactory manner.

Posted by: cmdicely on January 4, 2007 at 11:12 AM | PERMALINK

The attorney general-- this being the man confirmed 2/4/05 "With stronger than expected 'protest vote' for role in torture memos: "Opposition grew over what (senators) considered evasive and equivocal answers to questions about his role in administration memorandums that appeared to condone some types of torture for prisoners held in the campaign against terrorism." From think.progress.org

Posted by: consider wisely on January 4, 2007 at 11:31 AM | PERMALINK

The war profiteers are going to use the untold billions of dollars they 'earned' to keep control of the government. The amount of money they have been able to accumulate will allow them to fund neo-conservative, evangelical political campaigns, manipulate mainstreammedia into only broadcasting propaganda themes that favor their agenda, and bribe or intimidate any politician they want. What needs to be done is investigations, trials, seizure of assets and incarceration, otherwise, expect more war, more civil authority and more defense spending. Always expect more defesnse spending.

Posted by: Brojo on January 4, 2007 at 12:12 PM | PERMALINK

Also - something that hasn't been discussed: if military contactors in a foreign country are not subject to UCMJ - ie, they do not fall under the legitimate chain of command - their protections under the Geneva Convention is not clear. A captured guy in civilian clothes, with a weapon, operating outside of any law? Some might say he's a bandit or looter or maybe a spy - put him against a wall and shoot him. I'm surprised they took so long to clean this up - I was in a conference in 2003 when the US Army was discussing how contractors would be protected.

I believe the going definition for such people should be "illegal combatants."

Posted by: william cobham on January 4, 2007 at 12:38 PM | PERMALINK

wapiti:

There have been scores of contractors killed in Iraq and they are conveniently not included in the 3,000+ tally of dead you read about in the newpapers. Most notably, you may recall the 4 Americans who were burned to a crisp and then strung up on a bridge outside Falluja? They were civilian contrators from a company called Blackwater.

mike cook:

So let me get this straight - you see no problem with contractors like Parsons and KBR ripping off the American taxpayer for literally BILLIONS of dollars, because you consider the Clintons to be "evil financially", whatever that means? I have to say that this is some of the most fuzzy-brained, illogical thinking I have ever encountered. You may recall that every aspect of Bill and Hillary Clinton's lives were examined under a microscope for over eight years by Ken Starr and an army of FBI agents - every check they ever wrote, every credit card receipt, every phone call they ever made, at a cost to all of us of over $100 million and all they could prove was that Bill cheated on his wife and lied about it. If you have some new evidence of financial wrongdoing, I am sure the FBI would love to see it. If not, I suggest you shut the fuck up and stop demonstrating on an internationally read blog, how fucking dumb you are. Thank you.

TCD

Posted by: The Conservative Deflator on January 4, 2007 at 12:45 PM | PERMALINK
Also - something that hasn't been discussed: if military contactors in a foreign country are not subject to UCMJ - ie, they do not fall under the legitimate chain of command - their protections under the Geneva Convention is not clear.

I'm not sure that's as unclear as you make it sound, Geneva Convention (III), Article 4:

A. Prisoners of war, in the sense of the present Convention, are persons belonging to one of the following categories, who have fallen into the power of the enemy:

[...]

4. Persons who accompany the armed forces without actually being members thereof, such as civilian members of military aircraft crews, war correspondents, supply contractors, members of labour units or of services responsible for the welfare of the armed forces, provided that they have received authorization from the armed forces which they accompany, who shall provide them for that purpose with an identity card similar to the annexed model.

Note that only accompanying the regular forces with authorization from those forces is required, not being subject to the military chain of command or military justice. Their status would seem quite clear.

OTOH,

Posted by: cmdicely on January 4, 2007 at 12:49 PM | PERMALINK

TCD,

Please give the boy some slack - He has nowhere else to go - He spent the months of September and October standing on the pedestrian walkway across I-5 at Federal Way, holding signs aloft trying to get his "message" out to the voters of the 33rd District. Rather intelligent group, they.

Posted by: thethirdPaul on January 4, 2007 at 12:51 PM | PERMALINK

There have been scores of contractors killed in Iraq

Contractors' employees have been killed in Iraq. No owners or CEO's of contractors have been killed in Iraq. I notice no generals or politicians have been killed in Iraq either. Only those who serve authority die in Iraq. Those who serve capital do not seem to find themselves in harm's way.

Posted by: Brojo on January 4, 2007 at 1:08 PM | PERMALINK

I doubt many share holders of defense contractors have died in Iraq.

Posted by: Brojo on January 4, 2007 at 2:24 PM | PERMALINK

To The Conservative Deflator for the posting on January 4, 2007 at 12:45 PM

Dood, you are my hero for a day!

All I humbly ask now is PLEASE let the Democrats do what they promise and PLEASE let them keep their own noses clean doing it.


Posted by: Zit on January 4, 2007 at 3:35 PM | PERMALINK

Is this a good deed for which the Republicans should get credit?
Posted by: calibantwo

It is a good thing and Graham should get credit for it (assuming he did it). The fact that as a member of the majority party he had to sneak it in does not reflect well at all on Republicans as a party.

Posted by: cyntax on January 4, 2007 at 4:11 PM | PERMALINK

Bush is on tv saying he'll be ready to outline the Iraq strategy next week.
They expect us to believe he hasn't viewed the cellphone video of Saddam's demise, according to Tony Snow-job...as obsessed as Bush was with Saddam? I bet that is a lie and a big misrepresentation, especially with the indication he discussed the execution with Maliki.

Posted by: consider wisely on January 4, 2007 at 7:11 PM | PERMALINK

Mike--sorry, but you sound like an apologist for profiteering at taxpayers expense, and just a slight reminder--Bill Clinton hasn't been in office for over 6 years. George W Bush is responsible now.

Posted by: consider wisely always on January 4, 2007 at 11:00 AM | PERMALINK
*************************************************
True but KBR was given their sole-source contract for military operations support by the Clinton Administration to support the intervention in Kosovo back in the 90s

Posted by: Campesino on January 4, 2007 at 7:19 PM | PERMALINK

His post was full of circuitous statements about the ambiguity of "profiteering," and all of a sudden had the Clinton crescendo, referencing the Clintons as "evil people financially."

Posted by: consider wisely on January 4, 2007 at 7:28 PM | PERMALINK

Dear 3rd Paul. Congratulations that you know so much about me. It is rather comforting to know that someone was paying attention. Did you catch on to the subtlety that I ran a rather left-of-center campaign, hoping to shame my richer Repub friends into actually caring about what happens to high school drop-outs? I understood from the git-go that the rich do not care about drop-outs, but I also understood that Gov. Christitine Gregoire might bump up education spending by 25% and still not accomplish a damn thing socially if she does not criminalize dropping out so as to put real heat on lazy and confused teens. I wanted to tie education spending increases to a longer school day and a longer school year so that more intellectual work would get done on school premises. My feeling is that once the unsupervised children of single moms and 2Xincome homes arrive home at a house with no adult supervision nothing is going to happen there except sex and empty time wasting.

But maybe I'm an idiot, because as you very well know I buy into the thing about ONLY promoting monogamous, heterosexual relationships in public institutions. That's because I believe most people could swing either way--it's all about social brainwashing and I want traditional and even heroic nationalistic social indoctrination to re-surge in the very face of the tremendous social leftist tilt of recent societal evolution.

Why? I balanced all, brought all to mind, and considered it was best that it be so.

But of course the voters did not agree, in this election. Oh, did you note I also had a little social justice for poor males lullaby refrain in my campaign repertoire? That's because the femi-nazis routinely trash every hallowed notion of procedural justice ever conceived in my old Washington state. You can be so, so convicted of wife beating or baby raping here on such slender grounds, in fact, on invisible grounds, doomed by accusation unsuppported by any physical fact whatsoever!

Not only that, I witness such travesties happen all the damn time, thirdpaul. I appreciate that you bought my book and actually read part of it at least (WHY THE INNOCENT PLEAD GUILTY AND THE GUILTY GO FREE) but you did quickly decide on my idiocy--I don't know exactly why. I can tell you that all the realistic fiction is very realistic indeed, and that all the legal principles unfold in real courtrooms exactly as I say they unfold, so what is so idiotic? Enlighten me please...

Posted by: mike cook on January 5, 2007 at 12:47 AM | PERMALINK

cactus,

Well, If American contractors are committing crimes against Iraqis and getting away with it, it could go partway toward explaining why don't like Americans.

Well there is that, but I think there is also this:

http://minor-ripper.blogspot.com/2006/12/winning-hearts-and-minds-part-three.html

Posted by: Tripp on January 5, 2007 at 11:11 AM | PERMALINK

mike cook,

That's because I believe most people could swing either way--it's all about social brainwashing

Wow. Speak for yourself, dude. No amount of 'social brainwashing' will change my sexual orientation. That's probably why gays don't bother me. That is definitely why I advocate NOT trying to change anyone else.

Posted by: Tripp on January 5, 2007 at 11:21 AM | PERMALINK

That's because I believe most people could swing either way--it's all about social brainwashing

You must be one miserable son-of-a-bitch. I pity you.

Posted by: Mooser on January 5, 2007 at 3:37 PM | PERMALINK

Here's a conspiracy theory: Has anyone thought that maybe all these contracting companies may be working both sides ( US and Insurgency) to keep the war going so that they can keep filling their pockets? Scary....

Posted by: Chicho on January 5, 2007 at 4:49 PM | PERMALINK

So, does that mean contractors are now in the chain of command? Does it mean that contractors can now be prosecuted under Article 88 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice if they refer to our current President as corrupt incompetent? How about conduct unbecoming?

I think this will be used as a tool to keep whistleblowers quiet more than anything else.

If they really wanted to solve this problem, they could have created a federal prosecutor office solely to investigate crimes by civilians in Iraq, without establishing a troubling precedent of placing civilians under the Uniform Code of Military Justice.

Posted by: Nemo Ignotus on January 6, 2007 at 10:06 AM | PERMALINK

Dear Tripp and Chico, all primates are born rather blank on what to do to satisfy the sexual urge. That's why apes born in captivity have to be shown sexual content movies and surrounded with apes of the opposite gender who know what to do in order to get reproduction. For the most of our civilization's history the standard social norm was to indoctrinate all children very thoroughly in monogamous heterosexual relationships only. That did not always bring individual happiness, but it did work to continue a society that was remarkably adept at increasing the general prosperity and even elevating a conception of human freedom that may be, ultimately, too grandiose to survive in the real world.

Children and young adults must be brainwashed (and subsidized) in monogamous heterosexuality by all the official sources, which is precisely why my evangelical church will only elevate persons to highly prominent and paid positions who perfectly model the ideal of 50-year monogamous heterosexual, traditional family relationships in which all of the children turn out well. I do expect that at some near time the great leftist culture dictators will step in and force the turn-over of all our church assets to sexual leftists who profess a few of the forms of our faith, but otherwise are eager to recruit children into the anything-goes maze of lifestyle choices for the miserable.

BTW, I am not miserable myself at all. Only objective and with about a hundred year's experience of watching how people really get recruited into any lifetyle, from smoking to methamphetamine addiction. Heck, if people really had either perfect free will or perfect predestination, Madison Avenue would not have a multi-billion dollar business convincing us what to consume and how to live. So do all other seductive liars, who desperately want company in their particular unhealthy misery.

Posted by: mike cook on January 7, 2007 at 1:06 AM | PERMALINK




 

 

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