Five Blackwater Worldwide security guards – Donald Ball, Dustin Heard, Evan Liberty, Nick Slatten and Paul Slough – working under Blackwater’s contract to protect State Department personnel in Iraq, are charged with spraying a busy intersection with machine-gun fire and grenades, killing at least 14 unarmed civilians and wounding 20 others. One man, prosecutors said Monday, was shot in the chest with his hands raised in submission.
Assistant Attorney General Patrick Rowan proclaims, those who engage “in unprovoked attacks will be held accountable.” But, is that true?
It appears more that our government is deflecting all scrutiny from the corporate higher-ups who employed the guards – to say nothing of the policymakers whose decisions made the shootings possible, if not inevitable.
Why are there no charges filed against the North Carolina-based Blackwater firm—the biggest U.S. security contractor in Iraq—or any of the company’s executives? Blackwater no doubt has rules and regulations about when and where its people can discharge their weapons. But were those rules enforced? Did the guards who were indicted have any reason to believe they would be punished for their rampage? Or were the shootings considered acceptable inside the Blackwater bunker?
Blackwater Company executives should have to answer these and other questions—under oath.