Climate change coming — corporate coppers are getting ready

❝ …Their statistical and tactical approaches (are) fundamentally connected. All businesses exposed themselves to risk, which had to be mitigated, insured or, more relevantly, defended against. Even if the Pinkertons couldn’t predict the specific risks of the future, they had a general sense of what it might look like — and what opportunities they might avail themselves of as it materialized.

According to the World Bank, by 2050 some 140 million people may be displaced by sea-level rise and extreme weather, driving escalations in crime, political unrest and resource conflict. Even if the most conservative predictions about our climate future prove overstated, a 1.5-degree Celsius rise in temperature during the next century will almost certainly provoke chaos, in what experts call climate change’s “threat multiplier”: Displacement begets desperation begets disorder. Reading these projections from the relative comforts of the C-suite, it wasn’t difficult to see why a company might consider enhancing its security protocols.

❝ For Pinkerton, the bet is twofold: first, that there’s no real material difference between climate change and any other conflict — as the world grows more predictably dangerous, tactical know-how will simply be more in demand than ever. And second, that by adding data analytics, Pinkerton stands to compete more directly with traditional consulting firms like Deloitte, which offer pre- and postdisaster services (supply-chain monitoring, damage documentation, etc.), but which cannot, say, dispatch a helicopter full of armed guards to Guatemala in an afternoon. In theory, Pinkerton can do both — a fully militarized managerial class at corporate disposal.

Better read this, folks! Our Fake President and the Republican Party of Pimps for corporate America have their side of this question already picked out. To them, mitigating the effects of climate change – much less reversal – aren’t especially critical to the class of profiteers who will own the cool breezes of mountaintop sanctuaries and any other calm, cool, company command posts (golf course included) they require. Folks who need jobs that pay well for ignoring who you kill and maim will not be in short supply.

American mercenaries get serious prison sentences for Iraq murders


The youngest victim — 9-year-old Ali Kinani

Rejecting pleas for mercy, a federal judge on Monday sentenced former Blackwater security guard Nicholas Slatten to life in prison and three others to 30-year terms for their roles in a 2007 shooting that killed 14 Iraqi civilians and wounded 17 others.

The carnage in Baghdad’s Nisoor Square, a crowded traffic circle, caused an international uproar over the use of private security guards in a war zone and remains one of the low points of the war in Iraq.

U.S. District Judge Royce Lamberth sentenced Slatten, who witnesses said was the first to fire shots in the melee, to life on a charge of first-degree murder. The three other guards – Paul Slough, Evan Liberty and Dustin Heard – were each sentenced to 30 years and one day in prison for charges that included manslaughter, attempted manslaughter and using firearms while committing a felony…

Prosecutors described the shooting as an unprovoked ambush of civilians and said the men haven’t shown remorse or taken responsibility. Defense lawyers countered that the men were targeted with gunfire and shot back in self-defense.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Patrick Martin urged the court to consider the gravity of the crime as well as the sheer number of dead and wounded and “count every victim.”

“These four men have refused to accept virtually any responsibility for their crimes and the blood they shed that day,” Martin said…

Mohammad Kinani Al-Razzaq spoke in halting English about the death of his 9-year-old son as a picture of the smiling boy, Ali Mohammed Hafedh Abdul Razzaq, was shown on courtroom monitors. He demanded the court show Blackwater “what the law is” and claimed many American soldiers died “because of what Blackwater did.”

“What’s the difference between these criminals and terrorists?” Razzaq said.

And that, my friends, has always been the difference between fighting for national liberation, fighting for freedom against a foreign power occupying your nation – and terrorists willing to murder civilians regardless of what kind of freedom they say they’re fighting for.

It started with the brutal bombing of civilians in Madrid by Hitler’s Condor Legion during the Spanish Civil War – and was carried on with glorious abandon and self-justification by the US Air Force carpet-bombing, dropping napalm on civilians in VietNam. Contemporary examples include scum from AlQaeda and ISIS – and hired gunslingers like these convicted thugs.

You can actually get down to pretty fine points arguing military history. This ain’t one of them.

12% of US funds for Iraqi police actually gets to policing


Directing traffic in Baghdad

A US government watchdog has criticised a programme to train Iraqi police, saying it could become a “bottomless pit” for American money.

The report said only some 12% of the money spent in 2011 would be spent directly helping Iraq’s police. It also pointed out that the programme had yet to gain the support of the Iraqi government…

The programme for police training is run by the Department of State, which took over the role from the Department of Defense this month.

The report by the US Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction (SIGIR) said the Department of State had failed to put a plan in place for assessing the current and future capabilities of the Iraqi police…

“What tangible benefit will Iraqis see from this police training program? With most of the money spent on lodging, security, support, all the MOI [Iraqi Ministry of the Interior] gets is a little expertise, and that is if the program materialises,” Iraqi Deputy Interior Minister Adnan al-Assadi was cited as telling the report’s authors…

SIGIR’s inspector general said the state department did not fully co-operate with the report… Har!

According to the SIGIR report [.pdf], the US has spent about $8 billion on training Iraq’s police force since the US-led invasion in 2003, which by 2010 included 412,000 officers.

There was a great quote on Tom Keene’s mid-day TV show, today, when an economics professor was asked [in a different context] about changes in governance between George W. Bush and Barack Obama: “We were promised change and what we got was continuity.”

The incompetence and inefficiencies of outsourcing military tasks to mercenaries is consistent throughout post-invasion responsibilities in Iraq. Crap building of infrastructure is matched by crap governance, crap security and policing.

Brits remove the last of their troops from Iraq – All the United States has left is 47,000 troops and 63,000 civilian contractors

British troops leave Iraq

Britain is withdrawing its troops Sunday from Iraq, ending a role that began with the 2003 U.S.-led invasion to topple Saddam Hussein, British defense officials said…

“We now look forward to a strong, long-term defense relationship with Iraq,” Fox told the House of Commons when he announced Wednesday that British troops would leave the country.

The announcement effectively ended Britain’s role in Iraq, a role that was widely unpopular in the United Kingdom. About 179 British troops were killed during operations in Iraq.

Hundreds of thousands took to the streets in Britain when the war began, protesting the deployment of British troops to join then-President George Bush’s “Coalition of the Willing.” At the height of the war, more than 46,000 British troops were deployed primarily in and around the southern port city of Basra.

In 2009, Prime Minister Gordon Brown ordered an inquiry into the UK’s participation in the war.

Former Prime Minister Tony Blair testified during the inquiry that Iraq needed to be confronted over its ambitions to develop weapons of mass destruction… Supreme liar and flunky.

Britain ended its combat operations in Iraq in 2009 but maintained a small contingent, primarily members of the Royal Navy, to train Iraqi sailors and marines at the southern Iraqi port city of Umm Qasr…

Britain will leave behind a small contingent to protect its personnel at its embassy in Baghdad…

The legacy of the Brits in Iraq will always be colored by their colonial history.

The legacy of the United States? Most Iraqis will remember how many family members died to make the world safe for the Coalition of the Willing. They number in the hundreds of thousands.

Why should anyone remember us with more fondness than, say, a Ukrainian remembers the Germans?

Mercenaries who killed for hire in the Balkans captured in Bolivia


On their way to prison
Reuters

Two members of a mercenary gang said to have plotted to kill Bolivian President Evo Morales were veterans of the Balkan wars of the 1990s, reports say.

Three died and two were arrested in the eastern city of Santa Cruz after police fought a gunbattle with the group.

Bolivian police officials said two of the five fought for Croatian independence. The three others are said to be Irish, Romanian and Hungarian.

Chief among the suspected targets was Bolivian President Evo Morales, but Vice-President Alvaro Garcia Linera and Santa Cruz Governor Ruben Costas, a bitter opponent of Mr Morales, were also targeted, police said.

There has been no immediate explanation of why the alleged plotters would target government and opposition targets alike…

The group, suspected by authorities of being behind a dynamite attack on the home of a Catholic cardinal earlier in the week, was tracked down on Thursday to a hotel in Santa Cruz, some 900km (620 miles) east of the capital, La Paz.

This kind of crap should have disappeared back in the day of Oliver North. It will be interesting to see who the survivors turn over when their trial and sentencing roll around. Perhaps they will turn their paymasters over even sooner.

Like mercenaries in general, they have no reason for loyalty to a cause or standard. Their apparent link is to the 3rd Position Anarchist/Fascistgang.