Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Blackwater by the Numbers

Salon.com has the figures that show how much we’ve spent on the private contractor in Iraq.

In short, it ain’t been cheap: over $1 Billion since 2001.

You can read the whole memo here.

Josh Marshall has the background on the founder of Blackwater, Erik Prince. Would it surprise you to find out that Mr. Prince has been a major backer of right-wing causes, including the rabidly anti-gay Family Research Council, and has also been a major donor to the Republican Party — not to mention a familial connection with Dick DeVos, the president of Amway and ertswhile political candidate in Michigan? Didn’t think so. He’s so right-wing that at the age of 22 he bolted out of a two-year internship in the Bush I administration because they were “indifferent to a lot of conservative concerns.”

Strangely enough, there’s nothing in his background showing military service. But heck, when you can hire your own soldiers, rent them out to the government and make an outrageous fortune, why bother? Mr. Prince was a Navy SEAL. I stand corrected. But I wonder why the discipline he learned in the service seemed to be so lacking in the people he hired?