Sunday, July 26, 2009

Knock, Knock

Is this a joke?

U.S. Could Hire Private Guards for Bases in Afghanistan

WASHINGTON -- U.S. military authorities in Afghanistan may hire a private contractor to provide around-the-clock security at dozens of bases and protect vehicle convoys moving throughout the country.

The possibility of awarding a security contract comes as the Obama administration is sending thousands of more troops into Afghanistan to quell rising violence fueled by a resurgent Taliban. As the number of American forces grow over the next several months, so too does the demand to guard their outposts.

Defense Secretary Robert Gates has said he wants to cut back on the use of contractors that now provide a wide range services to American troops in war zones, including transportation, communications, food service, construction, and maintenance. As recently as February, however, Gates called the use of private security contractors in certain parts of Afghanistan "vital" to supporting U.S. bases. A contract for the work also creates job opportunities for Afghans, he said.

But the use of private contractors in Iraq has been highly contentious. Since a September 2007 shooting of Iraqi civilians in Baghdad by guards employed by Blackwater (now Xe Services), critics have urged U.S. officials to maintain much tighter controls over hired guards.

The Washington Post reported Saturday that the Army published a notice July 10 informing interested contractors it was contemplating a contract for "theater-wide" armed security.

"The contract would provide for a variety of security services, to include the static security of compounds on which U.S. and coalition forces reside, and for the protection of mission essential convoys in and around forward operating bases located throughout Afghanistan," the notice states.

No formal request for proposals has been issued. If the military decides to move ahead, a contract could be awarded by Dec. 1.


AP-FOX News

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Explain this to me, please! Our soldiers are to be protected by civilians? Does something appear a$$-backwards, or is it just me? Why aren't we building up our military, instead of bringing in civilian contractors? I have no doubt bottom line is the dollar. Short term answer to a big problem? It's one thing to have civilians cooking for our soldiers, so our GI's can take care of their missions. All of our military branches, put our soldiers through rigorous training; bottom line...they become warriors. Now, I have no doubt...there will be some ex-servicemen stepping into these positions, but c'mon folks. Will they hold the same dedication as our military, or will there come a moment when they feel the money is not worth it and they bail? Can they be trusted, can this result in more breeches of security?

I was going to save this for Talking Tuesday, but decided to post a Stumped Sunday instead.

Your turn......

28 comments:

coffeypot said...

Protecting you own is a much greater incentive for security than guard for bucks. Why do they put people in positions to effect our troops who have never had military experience? Not only is Obama-Lama a joke, but his cabinet has much to be desired, too.

Ky Woman said...

AM,
Gotta agree with you on this one. I read this yesterday and thought WTF? How is this going to help our guys in A'stan? I think they would much rather know one of their brothers in arms was watching their back than some unknown civilian. Mr. O certainly has been sending conflicting signals on "supporting our troops, and giving them everything they need to do their job." Makes you want to grab him and say....

"WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU DOING???"

christian soldier said...

It is up to us in the U.S. to get behind people who love this country -the Constitution-and respect the BEST who protect both--
Until we do- we will have those who "...'loathe' the military" (B.Clinton's words) ...

and military cuts:
http://carolmsblog.blogspot.com/2009/07/bho-and-anti-american-royals-priorities.html
C-CS

AirmanMom said...

coffeypot...I believe our nation needs to come together in prayer, and in action to protect those who protect us!

AirmanMom said...

ky...it is a brotherhood, they take care of each other. The cost is the other's life. Will this contract go to the lowest bidder or the most qualified?

AirmanMom said...

c-cs...your words are perfect! Thank you!

Utah Savage said...

I'd like to see private contractors out of business entirely. The military worked very well in past wars without contractors making billions making soldiers less safe. Electrocutions in the showers? $7 sodas? Murdering civilians? All I see contractors doing is making money for people like Dick Cheney. And making us seem like a nation of war profiteers.

AirmanMom said...

utah...I thank you for stopping by, I knnow you have lots on your plate these days. Stay well, my friend!

Strawberry Girl said...

I too am baffled, it is a shame a real shame that those in leadership positions like this abuse their power at the peril of our troups. God Bless our Troups!

Donna said...

This sounds really backwards! I don't get it!

Chuck said...

Agreed, I don't care for this at all.

The irony is that we have been spending money on a swamp rat in Pelosi's district, tatoo removal, Obama's various restaurant and weekend whims, yet we scrimp on protecting our troops?

Mary said...

AM,

This absolutely frightens me. I hope they decide against it. Soldiers should be guarding soldiers in my opinion. I agree that if in a tight spot, these people may just bail.

God Bless our Troops and watch over them.

Blessings,
Mary

MightyMom said...

well, when you have Nobama saying he's gonna cut the military by 25%...and Clinttwit saying we're gonna protect the middle east with a "defense umbrella" these two agendas are mutually exclusive...therefore they have to find a way to actually DO SOMETHING without looking like they're SUPPORTING OR INCREASING the Military....hence the use of civy's . it's a baaaad idea no doubt...but I can see how it comes about...oh and then there's my step-son...who has signed up for the Army....and then was told "sorry, we've met quota...we might call you later"...(back to that reducing the military crap).

AirmanMom said...

mightymom...as always, I do appreciate your visit!

Bag Blog said...

I agree that civilians should not be guarding military - very a$$-backwards.

I do wonder about the comment on Dick Cheney. I would like to point out that building contractors have been used in war zones since the Vietnam War, but not as guards. Brown & Root were very much in the pocket of LBJ and the Democrats. Later as KBR, they were used by Clinton in the Balkans. These civilians provided builders, food, and laundry services - just as civilians have done since WWII. According to wiki, 81 KBR employees have been killed in Iraq and 380 wounded. KBR was not part of Blackwater. Cheney cut his ties to Halliburton in 2000. Halliburton cut their ties to KBR in 2006.

Deb K said...

Did I read that right - "it will provide job opportunities for AFGHANS"????? What are they thinking? I can understand (maybe) having these guys doing the cooking, etc., but do we want to trust them with security for our soldiers?

Tami said...

Are you kidding me? They can not afford to pay our service members what they are worth but yet can afford to hire security forces? That is a slap in the face towards our Heroes.
Honestly I believe this administration is going to make me loss my mind.

aam

AirmanMom said...

bag blog...I thank you for sharing your knowledge! Your visits are always appreciated.

AirmanMom said...

sg...we need to pray for those make these decisions!

AirmanMom said...

donna...I had to read the article several times, I felt as though I wasn't getting it. Looks as though I am not alone!

AirmanMom said...

chuck...our troops deserve the utmost support in both money and appreciation!

AirmanMom said...

mary...you are correct, it is frightening!

AirmanMom said...

deb...from what I have read, soldiers are willing to help the Afghans rebuild, this is a wee bit different!

AirmanMom said...

aam...you make an excellent point! Thank you for stopping by!

CI-Roller Dude said...

Getting stuck on "Gate Guard" is almost as bad as "Mess Hall" guard. It sucks....every soldier hates it....(I only had to do it in another lifetime when I was 19) They used civilains in Bosnia and it saved us having to do it at most of the camps.
The problem that came in in Bosnia later is there were reports that the contractor didn't actually have people in all the guard post, but billed the Army for the ghoast guards anyway.
The other thing is, you can pay Private Snuffy E3 pay to guard a gate, or hire a contractor who's going to get at least 10 Grand a month for doing the same thing.

AirmanMom said...

ci...I thank you for stopping by and posting a comment...your words are always so insightful. thanks again!

imbeingheldhostage said...

spitting nails right beside you.

AirmanMom said...

ibhh...thank you for being a friend!