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Avant, Deborah: The market of force, The consequences of privatising security, Cambridge University Press, 2005, 320 p., ISBN: 0-521615356

'Deborah Avant has written a sensible corrective to the hype and hyperbole that has accompanied the study of 'mercenaries'. She shows how private military companies are a part of the everyday workings of national military establishments, and provides prescient warnings about the impact of excessive outsourcing in this area. Avant provides an alarming message that over-reliance on private forces undermines the spirit and commitment that make effective national militaries work. In doing so, Avant shows how a public ethic is an integral part of what makes national militaries successful and how this is missing in private military companies.' William S. Reno, Northwestern University 'Professor Avant gives us a comprehensive, balanced, yet ultimately disturbing look at the growing use of private security companies. Her cases cover the gamut of private security services and the widely varied circumstances of their use, while her theoretical framework links overarching trends to major concerns like military effectiveness, professional standards, and the control of force in the international system. Although she sees the good as well as the worrisome in the ever-widening use of such companies, overall her analysis raises serious questions about the wisdom of allowing market forces, as opposed to states and multi-national institutions, to shape the use and professional conduct of forces around the world.' Thomas L. McNaugher, Vice President for Army Studies, RAND Corporation 'Avant has performed a great service. There is much hype and hyperbole regarding the growth of private security forces, with many suggesting that these are warriors running wild. By sifting through the evidence and deploying a range of organizational theories, Avant generates develops a nuanced understanding of this sector, identifying how these forces are controlled and alerting us to when and where there remain legitimate concerns. Avant tackles the interesting development of the privatization of security. Over the last several decades privatization has moved into the security theater with substantial force. This is fascinating for theoretical, political, and normative reasons. The monopolization of the means of violence is a defining feature of the state and distinguishes the modern sovereign state from organizational rivals. Yet we find that states are knowingly and gladly devolving control. Why they should do this, and with what consequences, is important and fascinating. Avant wants to examine the consequences by examining the impact on state control. Toward that end, she unpacks the functional areas in which security is being privatized and considers different areas of state control. To illustrate these claims, she examines three cases of state privatization and non-state actors hiring private security forces to provide different functions. The implications of these developments for how politics is now being played out, who controls the means of force, and democratic accountability, are tremendous.' Review : Amazon / Michael N. Barnett, University of Minnesota.


Fainaru, Steve: Big Boys Rules, Da Capo Press, 2009, 288 p., ISBN: 0306818388

'For this mordant dispatch from one of the Iraq War's seamiest sides, Pulitzer Prize–winning Washington Post correspondent Fainaru embedded with some of the thousands of private security contractors who chauffeur officials, escort convoys and add their own touch of mayhem to the conflict. Exempt from Iraqi law and oversight by the U.S. government, which doesn't even record their casualties, the mercenaries, Fainaru writes, play by Big Boy Rules—which often means no rules at all as they barrel down highways in the wrong direction, firing on any vehicle in their path. (His report on the Blackwater company, infamous for killing Iraqi civilians and getting away with it, is meticulous and chilling.) Fainaru's depiction of the mercenaries' crassness and callousness is unsparing, but he sympathizes with these often inexperienced, badly equipped hired guns struggling to cope with a dirty war. Nor is he immune to the romance of the soldier of fortune, especially in his somewhat pathetic portrait of Jon Coté, Iraq War veteran and lost soul who joined the fly-by-night Crescent Security Group and was kidnapped by insurgents. Fainaru's vivid reportage makes the mercenary's dubious motives and chaotic methods a microcosm of a misbegotten war.' Review : Publishers Weekly (Copyrights: Reed Business Information).

Steve Fainaru about Blackwater


Drohan, Madelaine: How and why corporations used armed force to do business, The Lyons Press, 2004, 384 p., ISBN: 1592285775

Resource control is the core of Madelaine Drohan's book. Where the image of empire was once faceless armies, religious zealots or expanding trade, modern conditions have changed this view. Instead of governments launching empires, suit-clad businessmen now decide where the action lies. Decisions to exploit resource areas are not made in ministry offices, but in corporate boardrooms. Businessmen, "and they are almost always men", choose locations, make investments, recruit workers and begin operations. Until there is unrest. Then they call in governments to support their enterprise. If governments cannot or will not respond, the entrepreneur's answer is the "private army". Mercenary professional military men act as "security" teams, policemen or replacement armies. And they are accountable to no-one but the firm that has hired them. Drohan's account begins with the rule of Cecil Rhodes "who stands head and shoulders above" the ranks of those applying military solutions to "corporate problems". Rhodes built an immense resource empire in Southern Africa. He also set the standard for controlling workers as firmly as he did markets. By the expedient of raising a battalion of "pioneers" to deal with reluctant African peoples and recalcitrant workers, Rhodes expanded his holdings to an unprecedented degree. Attributing his goals to the furtherance of the British Empire, he also ensured the continuation of profits to his own pocket. Belgium's king Leopold followed Rhodes' example by keeping the Congo as a personal fief. The Belgian government was simply shunted aside on imperial affairs for decades. The rape of the Congo is a glaring example of imperialism run rampant, yet it set the stage for what followed. Drohan's narrative is dominated by personalities. Like a gaggle of rapacious ravens, men prominent in resource enterprise descended on Africa after Rhodes. Some of these were British, some Canadian, but others arose from among Africa's own peoples. These last were flexing political and economic muscle as former colonies became independent. These new nations, with their artificial boundaries laid down irrespective of tribal or ethnic limits, became caught up in internal regional disputes. Resource firms played off these rivalries to their advantage where possible. If contests for power became too heated, the companies had the option to withdraw or find ways of protecting their investments. Protection was provided by "security forces" available for hire. Among the most notorious of these was the South African firm, Executive Outcomes. Staffed by disaffected South African soldiers, it offered services directly or through hidden subsidiaries. Executive Outcomes emerges frequently, if often vaguely, as Drohan valiantly tries to unravel the machinations the firm and its customers perpetrated as gold, diamonds and other resources were sought and exploited. Legality is an elusive term in these activities. These are not distant and unrelated events. We tend to cling to the image of investment benefiting all - the theme of "globalisation". Drohan demonstrates how firms, pursuing resource wealth in Africa, have followed the Rhodes formula for success. Whether hiring private armies or simply requesting local government forces to act in their interests, resource firms are steadfastly ignoring the impact on local people and their economy. Of all Drohan's examples, the most glaring is the Talisman Energy story. Her chapter on this operation is at once the worst and the best example in the book. Talisman, a latecomer to Africa, seems to have learned nothing from previous resource history in the region. As Drohan describes it, Jim Buckee, Talisman's head, followed a sinuous path trying to keep his firm active in the resource field. With one eye open to profits and the other closed to government activities done in the name of "security" for his operations, Buckee brought his firm close to disaster. On the other hand, the case demonstrated the power of the public in bringing such firms to judgment. Various large stockholders, chastened at the thought of supporting a firm blind to the impact of its operations, withdrew investment. It's a fine example of what individuals can achieve in acting collectively. Drohan's book is a much needed exposure of business morals left unscrutinised. In her final chapter, "Perfectly Legal, Perfectly Immoral", she shows the path to justice for people under oppressive regimes shored up by rapacious businesses is long and difficult. Yet, if readers pay attention, she shows how they can be effective in making change. (...). Review : Amazon / Stephen A. Haines, Ottawa, Canada.


Isenberg, David: Shadow Force, Private security contractors in Iraq, Praeger Security, 2008, 245 p., ISBN: 978-0-275-99633-8

Offers an examination of the role that private security and military contractors have played in Iraq since the fall of Saddam Hussein. From their limited use in China during World War II, for example, to their often clandestine use in Vietnam ferrying supplies before the war escalated in 1964 and 1965 when their role became more prominent, public-private military contractors (PMC's) have made essential contributions to the success and failures of the military and United States. Today, with an emphasis on force restructuring mandated by the Pentagon, the role of PMC's, and their impact on policy-making decisions is at an all time peak. This work analyzes that impact, focusing specifically on PMC's in Iraq since the fall of Saddam Hussein in 2003. The author dissects their responsibilities, the friction that exists between contractors and military commanders, problems of protocol and accountability, as well as the problems of regulation and control that PMC companies create for domestic politics. The author organizes his work thematically, addressing all facets of PMC's in the current conflict from identifying who the most influential companies are and how they got to that point, to the issues that the government, military, and contractors themselves face when they take the field. He also analyzes the problem of command, control, and accountability. It is no secret that PMC's have been the source of consternation and grief to American military commanders in the field. As they work to establish more routine protocols in the field, however, questions are also being raised about the role of the contractors here at home. The domestic political arena is perhaps the most crucial battleground on which the contractors must have success. After all, they make their corporate living from taxpayer dollars, and as such, calls for regulation have resonated throughout Washington, D.C., growing louder as the profile of PMC's increases during the current conflict. Review : Amazon.


Al Jazeera
"Companies Frauding and Overcharging"
Interview with David Isenberg

"David Isenberg about the
factors eading to Private Military growth in the 1990s"
In "Force Provision" by Allie Tyler

"David Isenberg about the
categories of Private Military Companies"
In "Force Provision" by Allie Tyler

Musah, Abdel-Fatau; Fayemi, Kayode: Mercenaries, An African Security Dilemma, Pluto Press, London, 2000, 334 p., ISBN: 0 7453 1476 7

Recent investigation into the activities of Sandline International in Sierra Leone has rekindled interest in the role of private armies in African conflicts. Sensational references in newspaper articles, however, run the risk of emphasizing the military aspect of security at the expense of a holistic approach to an emergent security conundrum.This fascinating book is a critique of mercenary involvement in post-Cold War African conflicts. It seeks to achieve a greater understanding of the mercenary-instability complex by examining the links between the rise in internal conflicts and the proliferation of mercenary activities in the 1990s. The distinction in the methods adopted by Cold War mercenaries and their contemporary counterparts, the convoluted network between private armies, business interests, sustained poverty in Africa's poorest countries as well as the connection between mercenary activities and arms proliferation. In exploring solutions to the upsurge of mercenaries on the continent, the book seeks a political and legal redefinition of the term "mercenaries," and calls for new international legislation.The book argues that unless there are complete solutions to the root causes of conflict in a region where poverty represents the greatest threat to democracy and development, legislation will provide only temporary, rather than permanent, mechanisms for stemming this disturbing trend. Review : Amazon.


Prince, Erik: Civilian Warriors, The true story of Blackwater and the Unsung Heroes of the War on Terror, First Edition, 2013, 416 p., ISBN: 1591847214

'Forget everything you think you know about Blackwater. And get ready for a thrilling, true story that will make you rethink who the good guys and bad guys have been since 9/11. No company in our time has been as mysterious or as controversial as Blackwater. Founded by former Navy SEAL Erik Prince in 1997, it recruited special forces veterans and others with the skills and courage to take on the riskiest security jobs in the world. As its reputation grew, government demand for its services escalated, and Blackwater’s men eventually completed nearly one hundred thousand missions in Iraq and Afghanistan. Both the Bush and Obama administrations found the company indispensible. It sounds like a classic startup success story, except for one problem: Blackwater has been demonized around the world. From uninformed news coverage to grossly distorted fictional portrayals, Blackwater employees have been smeared as mercenaries, profiteers, jackbooted thugs, and worse. Because of the secrecy requirements of Blackwater’s contracts with the Pentagon, the State Department, and the CIA, Prince was unable to speak out when his company’s opponents spread false information. But now he’s able to tell the full and often shocking story of Blackwater’s rise and fall. In Civilian Warriors, Prince pulls no punches and spares no details. He explains his original goal of building an elite center for military and law enforcement training. He recounts how the company shifted gears after 9/11. He honors our troops while challenging the Pentagon’s top leadership. And he reveals why highly efficient private military contractors have been essential to running our armed forces, since long before Blackwater came along. Above all, Prince debunks myths about Blackwater that spread while he was forced to remain silent—myths that tarnished the memory of men who gave their lives for their country but never got the recognition they deserved. He reveals new information about some of the biggest controversies of the War on Terror, including: The true story of the Nisour Square massacre in Baghdad; The actual details of Blackwater’s so-called impunity in Iraq; The events leading up to the televised deaths of Blackwater contractors in Fallujah. Prince doesn’t pretend to be perfect, and he doesn’t hide the sometimes painful details of his private life. But he has done a great public service by setting the record straight. His book reads like a thriller but is too improbable to be fiction.' Review : Editor/Amazon. 


Newsmax TV
Erik Prince about his Book "Civilian Warriors"


ABC News
Blackwater Founder Fights for Reputation



Roberts, Adam: The Wonga Coup, Profile Books, 2006, 303 p., ISBN: 1 58648 371 5

The most terrifying thing about this chronicle of a failed coup attempt in Equatorial Guinea is that it's not a Graham Greene novel but a true story. Roberts, an Economist staffer, chronicles the plot by foreign mercenaries and merchants to topple the country's brutal dictatorship solely for the "wonga" (British slang for "money, usually a lot of it"). An irresistibly lurid tale is peopled with bellicose profiteers, particularly of the neocolonialist sort from Europe and South Africa, with long histories of investment in oil, diamonds and war-for-profit. Among these self-styled gentleman adventurers are Margaret Thatcher's son, Sir Mark Thatcher, and "rag-and-bone intelligence men" who linger in hotel bars, "picking up scraps of information... selling them on to willing buyers, whether corporate or government." The audacity of the coup's planners is almost admirable, though Roberts rightly chastises them for their oil-soaked greed. As he lifts the curtain to the backrooms of power in postcolonial Africa, the reader finds that not much has changed on the continent since 1618, when the "Company of Adventurers of London Trading to the Ports of Africa" became the first private company to colonize Africa for profit. Starred Review. Amazon / Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Once Upon a Coup

Al Jazeera
Simon Mann talks about Equitorial Guinea coup


Scahill, Jeremy: Blackwater, The rise of the world's most powerful mercenary army, B&T, 2007, 404 p., ISBN-10: 1560259795

Meet Blackwater USA, the powerful private army that the U. S. government has quietly hired to operate in international war zones and on American soil. With its own military base, a fleet of twenty aircraft, and twenty-thousand troops at the ready, Blackwater is the elite Praetorian Guard for the "global war on terror"-- yet most people have never heard of it. It was the moment the war turned: On March 31, 2004, four Americans were ambushed and burned near their jeeps by an angry mob in the Sunni stronghold of Falluja. Their charred corpses were hung from a bridge over the Euphrates River. The ensuing slaughter by U. S. troops would fuel the fierce Iraqi resistance that haunts occupation forces to this day. But these men were neither American military nor civilians. They were highly trained private soldiers sent to Iraq by a secretive mercenary company based in the wilderness of North Carolina. Blackwater: The Rise of the World's Most Powerful Mercenary Army is the unauthorized story of the epic rise of one of the most powerful and secretive forces to emerge from the U. S. military-industrial complex, hailed by the Bush administration as a revolution in military affairs, but considered by others as a dire threat to American democracy. Scahill, a regular contributor to the Nation, offers a hard-left perspective on Blackwater USA, the self-described private military contractor and security firm. It owes its existence, he shows, to the post–Cold War drawdown of U.S. armed forces, its prosperity to the post-9/11 overextension of those forces and its notoriety to a growing reputation as a mercenary outfit, willing to break the constraints on military systems responsible to state authority. Scahill describes Blackwater's expansion, from an early emphasis on administrative and training functions to what amounts to a combat role as an internal security force in Iraq. He cites company representatives who say Blackwater's capacities can readily be expanded to supplying brigade-sized forces for humanitarian purposes, peacekeeping and low-level conflict. While emphasizing the possibility of an "adventurous President" employing Blackwater's mercenaries covertly, Scahill underestimates the effect of publicity on the deniability he sees as central to such scenarios. Arguably, he also dismisses too lightly Blackwater's growing self-image as the respectable heir to a long and honorable tradition of contract soldiering. Ultimately, Blackwater and its less familiar counterparts thrive not because of a neoconservative conspiracy against democracy, as Scahill claims, but because they provide relatively low-cost alternatives in high-budget environments and flexibility at a time when war is increasingly protean. Review. Amazon / Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


Jeremy Scahill talks about Blackwater


Schumacher, Gerald: A bloody Business, America's war zone contractor and the occupation of Iraq, Zenith Press, St. Paul, 2006, 304 p., ISBN: 0 7603 2355 0

Retired army colonel Schumacher polishes the public image of private wartime contractors in this informative if relentlessly glowing account of these "unrecognized and unappreciated patriots" in Iraq and Kuwait. Schumacher gained access to employees from contracting firms MPRI and Crescent Security, and his perspective is one of deep affection and respect—for people who put themselves in harm's way to provide security for diplomats, to move convoys of precious materials and to rebuild the broken infrastructure of war-torn countries. Describing the day-to-day operations of the trucking, training and security contractors he interviewed in Kuwait and Iraq, Schumacher argues that they don't work for the money (MPRI workers' pay comes to under $20 an hour) but out of a sense of adventure, patriotism and expertise. The author's voice is unpretentious but swaggering, tough but sentimental; he's as critical of the Bush administration for its ill-conceived strategies as of the media for what he considers prejudice. There's not much in the way of subtle policy debate or comprehensive analysis ("Department of Defense outsourcing to civilian contractors is an efficient, short-term solution"), but Schumacher writes with a keen sense of justice and empathy as he recounts the harrowing tales of these contractors-for-hire. Review. Amazon / Publishers Weekly / Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


Singer, Peter, W.: The Rise of the privatized military industry, Cornell University Press, Ithaca and London, 2003, 326 p., ISBN: 0-8014-8915-6

Some have claimed that "War is too important to be left to the generals", but P.W. Singer asks "What about the business executives?". Breaking out of the guns-for-hire mould of traditional mercenaries, corporations now sell skills and services that until recently only state militaries possessed. Their products range from trained commando teams to strategic advice from generals. This new "privatized military industry" encompasses hundreds of companies, thousands of employees, and billions in revenue. Whether as proxies or suppliers, such firms have participated in wars in Africa, Asia, the Balkans and Latin America. More recently, they have become a key element in US military operations. Private corporations working for profit now sway the course of national and international conflict, but the consequences have been little explored. In this book, Singer provides an account of the military services industry and its broader implications. "Corporate Warriors" includes a description of how the business works, as well as portraits of each of the basic types of companies: military providers that offer troops for tactical operations; military consultants that supply expert advice and training; and military support companies that sell logistics, intelligence and engineering. The privatization of warfare allows startling new capabilities and efficiencies in the ways that war is carried out. At the same time, however, Singer finds that the entrance of the profit motive onto the battlefield raises a series of troubling questions - for democracy, for ethics, for management, for human rights and for national security. A security analyst at the Brookings Institution, Singer raises disturbing new issues in this comprehensive analysis of a post-Cold War phenomenon: private companies offering specialized military services for hire. These organizations are nothing like the mercenary formations that flourished in post-independence Africa, whose behavior there earned them the nickname les affreux: "the frightful ones." Today's corporate war-making agencies are bought and sold by Fortune 500 firms. Even some UN peacekeeping experts, Singer reports, advocate their use on grounds of economy and efficiency. Governments see in them a means of saving money-and sometimes a way to use low-profile force to solve awkward, potentially embarrassing situations that develop on the fringes of policy. Singer describes three categories of privatized military systems. "Provider firms" (the best known being the now reorganized Executive Outcomes) offer direct, tactical military assistance ranging from training programs and staff services to front-line combat. "Consulting firms," like the U.S.-based Military Professional Resources Inc., draw primarily on retired senior officers to provide strategic and administrative expertise on a contract basis. The ties of such groups to their country of origin, Singer finds, can be expected to weaken as markets become more cosmopolitan. Finally, the overlooked "support firms," like Brown & Root, provide logistic and maintenance services to armed forces preferring (or constrained by budgetary factors) to concentrate their own energies on combat. Singer takes pains to establish the improvements in capability and effectiveness privatization allows, ranging from saving money to reducing human suffering by ending small-scale conflicts. He is, however, far more concerned with privatization's negative implications. Technical issues, like contract problems, may lead to an operation ending without regard to a military rationale. A much bigger problem is the risk of states losing control of military policy to militaries outside the state systems, responsible only to their clients, managers, and stockholders, Singer emphasizes. So far, private military organizations have behaved cautiously, but there is no guarantee will continue. Nor can the moralities of business firms be necessarily expected to accommodate such niceties as the laws of war. Singer recommends increased oversight as a first step in regulation, an eminently reasonable response to a still imperfectly understood development in war making. Review. Amazon / Publishers Weekly / Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


Big Think
Peter W. Singer on Holding Private Military Companies Accountable



Venter, Al: War Dog: Fighting other people's wars, The modern mercenary in combat, Casemate Publishers and book Distributors LLC, 2005, 609 p., ISBN: 1932033092

Mercenaries have been around since the dawn of civilization, yet today they are little understood. While many modern freelance fighters provide support for larger military establishments, others wage war where the great powers refuse. In War Dog, Al Venter examines the latter, in the process he unveils a remarkable array of close-quarters combat action. Having personally visited everywhere he describes, Venter is the rare correspondent who had to carry an AK-47 in his research along with his notebook and camera. To him, covering mercenary actions meant accompanying the men into the thick of combat. During Sierra Leone's civil war, he flew in the government's lone Hind gun ship-piloted by the heroic chopper ace "Nellis"-as it flew daily missions to blast apart rebel positions. In this book Venter describes the battles of the South African mercenary company Executive Outcomes and after stemming the tide of Jonas Savimbi's UNITA army in Angola they headed north to hold back vicious rebels in West Africa. This book is not only about triumph against adversity but also losses, as Venter relates the death and subsequent cannibalistic fate of his American friend, Bob MacKenzie, in Sierra Leone. Here we see the plight of thousands of civilians fleeing from homicidal jungle warriors, as well as the professionalism of the mercenaries who fought back with one hand and attempted to train government troops with the other. The American public, as well as its military, largely sidestepped the horrific conflicts that embroiled Africa during the past two decades. But as Venter informs us, there were indeed small numbers of professional fighters on the ground, defending civilians and attempting to conjure order from chaos. In this book we gain an intimate glimpse of this modern breed of warrior in combat. Not laden with medals, or even guaranteed income, they have fought some of the toughest battles in the post- Cold War era. They simply are, and perhaps always will be, "War Dogs." Review. Amazon.


Young Pelton, Robert: Licenced to kill, the Privatisation of the war on terror, Crown Publishers, 2006, 288 p., ISBN: 1400097819

Robert Young Pelton first became aware of the phenomenon of hired guns in the War on Terror when he met a covert team of contractors on the Afghanistan/Pakistan border in the fall of 2003. Pelton soon embarked on a globe-spanning odyssey to penetrate and understand this shadowy world, ultimately delivering stunning insights into the way private soldiers are used. Enter a blood-soaked world of South African mercenaries and tribal fighters backed by ruthless financiers. Drop into Baghdad’s Green Zone, strap on body armor, and take a daily high-speed ride with a doomed crew of security contractors who dodge car bombs and snipers just to get their charges to the airport. Share a drink in a chic hotel bar with wealthy owners of private armies who debate the best way to stay alive in war zones. Licensed to Kill spans four continents and three years, taking us inside the CIA’s dirty wars; the brutal contractor murders in Fallujah and the Alamo-like sieges in Najaf and Al Kut; the Deep South contractor training camps where ex–Special Operations soldiers and even small town cops learn the ropes; the contractor conventions where macho attendees swap bullet-punctuated tales and discuss upcoming gigs; and the grim Central African prison where contractors turned failed mercenaries pay a steep price. The United States has encouraged the use of the private sector in all facets of the War on Terror, placing contractors outside the bounds of functional legal constraints. With the shocking clarity that can come only from firsthand observation, Licensed to Kill painstakingly deconstructs the most controversial events and introduces the pivotal players. Most disturbingly, it shows that there are indeed thousands of contractors—with hundreds more being produced every month—who’ve been given a license to kill, their services available to the highest bidder. Review: Amazon / Backcover.






Azzellini, Dario; Kanzleiter, Boris: Das Unternehmen Krieg, Paramilitärs, Warlords und Privatarmeen als Akteure der Neuen Kriegsordnung, Assoziation A, 2003, 215 p., ISBN: 3935936176

Dass eine neue Weltordnung auch eine neue Kriegsordnung impliziere, darauf wird emblematisch bereits im Untertitel des Sammelbands hingewiesen. Das bedeutet nun aber nicht, dass die Autoren die neuen Kriege, die ja zuallererst singuläre Erscheinungen sind, bloß über einen historisch-materialistisch aktualisierten Interpretationskamm scheren würden. Vielmehr wird unterschiedlichsten Vorort-Verhältnissen in Fallstudien nachgegangen und dabei auch überwiegend auf unabhängige und einheimische Informationen zurückgegriffen. Vorangeschickt ist zwar ein die politisch-theoretische Ausrichtung klärender Aufsatz, dem dann aber Untersuchungen zu Kolumbien, der Türkei, Mexiko, Guatemala, dem ehemaligen Jugoslawien, Afghanistan, Indonesien, dem Kongo und Angola folgen. Die hier versammelten Untersuchungen zeigen an Beispielen buchstäblich aus aller Welt, dass die Trennung zwischen staatlicher und privater Gewaltausübung, zwischen militärischen und ökonomischen Interessen, zwischen organisierter Kriminalität und dem Weltmarkt, zwischen 1. und 3. Welt und zu guter Letzt und ganz zentral eben die Unterscheidung zwischen Krieg und Normalzustand immer poröser wird. Review : Amazon / Deutschlandfunk.



Uesseler, Rolf: Krieg als Dienstleistung, Private Militärfirmen zerstören die Demokratie, Ch. Links Verlag, 2006, 240 p., ISBN: 3 86153 385 5

"Private Militärfirmen verdienen nicht am Frieden, sondern am Krieg und Konflikten." (Rolf Uesseler) Das Eingangszitat und der Untertitel "Private Militärfirmen zerstören die Demokratie" unterstreichen die Zielrichtung des kritischen Sachbuches, das im März 2008 bereits in seiner aktualisierten, um das Kapitel "Blackwater" erweiterten, 3. Auflage erschienen ist. Der freie Publizist und Wissenschaftler bringt hierbei seine Erfahrungen ein, die er schon zuvor im Zusammenhang mit den Themenfeldern Illegale Trends der Weltwirtschaft, Organisierte Kriminalität und Schattenökonomie gemacht hat. Mit dem Ende des Ost-West-Konflikts und dem Fall des Eisernen Vorhangs wurde der Weltmarkt mit Waffen geradezu überschwemmt. Von der Öffentlichkeit weitgehend unbemerkt sind seit über einem Jahrzehnt Private Militärfirmen (PMF) in aller Welt tätig. Neben einem Merkblatt für die Anwerbung eines Privatsoldaten (Seite 13) schildert der Autor einige typische Söldnerkarrieren. Ihre Existenz wurde kaum wahrgenommen und nur selten thematisiert. Es bedurfte erst einiger Skandale und des Irak-Krieges, damit die Öffentlichkeit auf dieses Phänomen aufmerksam wurde. So stand beipielsweise hinter dem Folterskandal im Gefängnis von Abu Ghraib mit Steve Stefanowicz ein Verhörspezialist der privaten PMF "CACI International" mit Sitz in Arlington/Virginia (S. 34). Oder wenn es z. B. Hackern gelungen war, in das Sicherheitssystem des US-Präsidenten einzudringen. So wurde bekannt, dass die Hälfte des 40 Milliarden Dollar Budgets für die verschiedenen US-Geheimdienste mittlerweile an verschiedene PMF gezahlt wird. Im Bereich Logistik haben die PMF in den angelsächsischen Ländern nahezu eine Monopolstellung erlangt. Während der Branchenumsatz im Jahr 2005 bei ca. 200 Milliarden Euro lag, findet man die umsatzstärksten Firmen mit ihren Stammhäusern unter den ersten 100 der am höchsten notierten Aktiengesellschaften der jeweiligen Länder. Ganz klar, denn PMF gehorchen ausschließlich den Marktregeln, das heißt dem Gesetz von Angebot und Nachfrage. Sie verfahren nicht anders als anderen privaten Wirtschaftsbetrieben. Die wahrgenommenen Aufgaben, die auch als Dienstleistungspakete angeboten werden gliedern sich in die Bereiche Sicherheit, Ausbildung, Intelligence und Logistik. Ihre Dienstleistungen sind jedoch als schnelle und effiziente Lösungen, langfristig gesehen gewissermaßen Wegwerfprodukte. Einmal benutzt sind sie auch verbraucht. Mit "Write a cheque and end a war" , à la Präsident der IPOA, Doug Brooks, ist es nicht weit her... Der Autor liefert eine scharfe und gründliche Analyse der Gefahren, die sich aus dem Engagement der PMF ergeben. Hierzu gibt er nicht nur abstrakte Beispiele, sondern nennt stets Ross und Reiter. Er unterscheidet zwischen sogenannten "starken" Staaten, deren transnationalen Konzerne in einer Verteidigungsschlacht um die ökonomischen Ressourcen der "schwachen, verfallenden" Staaten kämpfen. Die Grenzen zwischen wirtschaftlichem, politischen und humanitärem Gründen in der Zusammenarbeit mit Wirtschaftsunternehmen, Staaten, Regierungen, Hilfs- und Friedensorganisation, sogar die UNU wird durch die PMF nicht nur verwischt. Bei einigen Ländern ist kaum noch festzustellen, wo das nationale Interesse aufhört und das Konzerninteresse anfängt. Mit Blick auf die angelsächsischen Länder muss gar der Eindruck entstehen, dass von diesen nur dort militärisch interveniert wird, wo "etwas zu holen" ist. So wurde die neue nationale Energiepolitik Georges W. Bush ungewollt oder gewollt mit dem globalen "Krieg gegen den Terror" verwoben. Eine Verflechtung zwischen staatlichen und privaten Akteure ist vornehmlich in den USA zu finden. Während sich auch Defensiv- und Offensivcharakter verwischen können, kann eine ursprünglich von politischer Ethik getragene Friedensmissionen fraglich werden. Uesseler gibt zahlreiche Beispiele für Macht und Möglichkeiten der PMF. Während die Gesamte US-Mission im Kosovo und ihr Gelingen von den Kapazitäten der Firma KBR abhing, verfügt "Executive Outcomes" (EO) über eine komplette Armee mit einem Stammpersonal von 2000 hochspezialisierten Soldaten, Schützen- und Transportpanzern, sieben Kampfhubschrauber und acht Flugzeugen der Typen MiG 23, MiG 27 und SU 25. (Das ganze Firmenimperium wird in einer Übersicht auf Seite 80 dargestellt.) Das vom Ex-Navy Seal Eric Prince 1997 Blackwater Worlwide rekrutiert Privatsoldaten vornehmlich aus Ländern der 3. Welt. Neben Philippinos zählen hierzu auch Spezialisten aus der ehemaligen Junta Pinochets. Nachdem am 16. September 2007 am Nisour Platz in Bagdad 17 irakische Zivilisten von einem Blackwater-Spezialisten grundlos erschossen worden waren, konnte der diplomatische Konflikt konnte nur durch das persönliche Eingreifen von US-Außenministerin Rice beigelegt werden. Insgesamt gab es 63 Vorfälle bei denen Blackwater-Mitarbeiter als zuerst schossen. Angestellte, die durch den Abschluss verbindlicher Verträge mit völkerrechtlich anerkannten Regierungen gegenüber der Justiz abgesichert sind, unterliegen keiner staatlichen Kontrolle und erzeugen daher so gut wie keine "Overhead-Kosten". Dennoch ist die Behauptung, dass ein Outsourcing für den Auftragsstaat Staat billiger sei ein gravierender Irrtum! Während für einen Sergeant 140 - 190 Dollar pro Tag zu veranschlagen sind, Ein kostet ein neuer ca.1222 Dollar. Daneben liegen Exportproduktionszonen der sog. Maquiladora Industrien in nahezu exterritorialen Produktionszonen. In diesen rechtsfreien Räumen sind nicht nur Lohndumping keine Grenzen gesetzt. Verbrecher kommen straffrei davon. Als Beispiele dienen Kolumbien (S. 139) und afrikanische Staaten (S. 166), wo es auch zu Straftaten und Menschenrechtsverletzungen gegen Arbeiter und Gewerkschafter kam. Ab Seite 89 gibt es einen Abriss über "Die Geschichte der Kriegswirtschaft", die beim biblischen David beginnt und über Hopliten der griechischen Poleis, den Seldschuken und Condottieri, den Landsknechten und Schweizer Garden der Ostindischen Kompanie und an England verkaufte Hessische Untertanen bis zum Eisernen Kreuz Träger Siegfried "Kongo" Müller reicht. Die Warnung vor dem beschleunigten Niedergang des Nationalstaates, einer Erosion des Gewaltmonopols, der schwindenden Souveränität und die allmähliche Auflösung des Staates dargelegt. Als eklatantes Beispiel nennt er die Privatisierung von Gefängnissen. (S. 195) Glücklicherweise gab es bereits Reaktionen in der Politik. Im Herbst 2004 brachte die CDU/CSU Fraktion einen Antrag in den Bundestag ein, in dem es hieß, dass die Privatisierung langfristig zu einem fundamentalen Wandel zwischen Militär und Nationalstaat führen kann. Über alle Parteigrenzen hinweg war man sich einig, dass Militärfirmen zu einem Staat im Staate werden und dessen Existenz gefährden können Das EU-Parlament griff die mangelnde Kontrolle und Verantwortlichkeit auf, indem es eine Entschließung verabschiedete, die eine Finanzierung von Todesschwadronen durch die British Patrol scharf verurteilte. UNO beauftragte einen "Sonderberichterstatter für das Söldnerwesen",denn das Völkerrecht kennt für den Kriegsfall nur Kombattanten und Zivilbevölkerung. Die neuen Söldner sind jedoch weder das Eine noch das Andere. In seinen Schlussbemerkungen stellt der Autor einen Forderungskatalog für das Engagement deutscher Firmen auf. 17 Seiten Anmerkungen (Fussnoten & Quellen) und ein Pro und Contra PMF für die Bereiche Wirtschaftlichkeit, Militär, Peacekeeping und humanitäre Einsätze, Internationale Krisen, Technologie, Politik und Recht sind abschließende Belege dafür, dass sich Uesseler durchaus differenziert mit der Thematik auseinander gesetzt hat. Das Buch ist zuerst sicherlich keine Lektüre für militärische Abenteurer, Hightechwaffen-Freaks, die gerne Einsatzberichte und technische Details wissen wollen oder Lobbyisten der Branche. Sie dennoch auf ihre Kosten, den im Anhang gibt es neben einem fünfseitigen Verzeichnis weiterführender Literatur auch eine alphabetische Auflistung der wichtigsten PMF im Internet mit deren Firmensitz und Arbeitsschwerpunkten. Den Abschluss bildet ein Personen- und Firmenregister. Review Amazon / Timediver – Ronald Funck.


Wulf, Herbert: Internationalisierung und Privatisierung von Krieg und Frieden, Nomos Verlag, 2005, 258 p., ISBN: 3-8329-1375-0

»Die Welt ist wohl nicht bereit, den Frieden zu privatisieren«, sagte Kofi Annan 1996 als sich in Ruanda abermals ein Flüchtlingsdrama anbahnte. Der UN Sicherheitsrat konnte sich weder dazu entschließen Friedenstruppen zu entsenden, noch das Angebot einer privaten Militärfirma anzunehmen, die binnen sechs Wochen ein Kontingent von 1500 Firmensoldaten zum Schutz der Flüchtlinge einsetzen wollte. Für die Privatisierung des Krieges scheint die Welt aber reif zu sein. Heute kommt auf 8 US-Soldaten im Irak mindestens 1 Angestellter einer Militärfirma, die Militär- und Polizeiaufgaben wahrnehmen. Immer häufiger verlässt sich das Militär auf diese neuen privaten Militärdienstleister. Internationale militärische Interventionen und die Privatisierung des Militärs stehen im Mittelpunkt der Veröffentlichung. Anhand verschiedener Fallstudien (UN-Friedensmissionen, Krisenreaktionskräfte der EU, Peacekeeping Südafrikas, Konkurrenz und Kooperation zwischen Militär und Hilfsorganisationen in Nachkriegswiederaufbauprogrammen, Privatisierung des Militärs in Großbritannien und USA, militärische Einsätze gegen Terroristen) zeigt der Autor zwei problematische Tendenzen auf: die Internationalisierung und die Privatisierung des Militärs und deren negative Auswirkungen für die Aufrechterhaltung des staatlichen Gewaltmonopols. Review : Verlagsinformation.






Cécile, Jean-Jacques: Chiens de Guerre de l’Amérique, Nouveau Monde Éditions, 2008, 298 p., ISBN: 978-2-84736-372-2

16 septembre 2007. Dans le square Nisour, à Bagdad, des hommes de la société militaire privée Blackwater dégainent leur arme et tirent. Bilan: 17 morts, 24 blessés. Des civils. Face au carnage, le Premier ministre irakien, Nouri al-Maliki, exige le bannissement de l'entreprise. Demande bien inutile, pense ce diplomate américain qui affirme: "Nous révoquerons la licence d'al-Maliki avant qu'il ne révoque celle de Blackwater." Ces sociétés sont de vrais empires, économiques, avec des milliers d'employés, des chiffres d'affaires astronomiques, le tout bâti en quelques années, par la grâce de liens étroits et nébuleux avec les responsables de l'administration Bush. Si ces entreprises sont apparues dans les années 1970, recrutant anciens des forces spéciales et des services action, leur nombre ne cesse de se multiplier depuis une dizaine d'années. Voici pour la première fois en France une enquête sans concession sur leurs ramifications, leurs pratiques et leurs dangers. Review: Amazon.


Cécile, Jean-Jacques: Espionnage business, Ellipses Marketing, 2005, 269 p., ISBN: 2729822860

Hier chasse gardée des Etats, le renseignement est aujourd'hui une marchandise comme une autre. Tendance lourde des sociétés démocratiques et libérales et venue du monde anglosaxon, la privatisation de l'espionnage a pour effet de radicaliser les pratiques politiques, économiques et médiatiques. Dans ce nouveau marché privé mais peuplé de talents formés dans les organismes étatiques, le client paie pour connaître en profondeur son adversaire, le déstabiliser et même le salir : tous les coups sont permis. La France elle-même est prise dans le phénomène. A-t-elle le choix quand ses entreprises subissent une déstabilisation croissante venue d'Outre-Atlantique ? Preuves et exemples à l'appui, Jean-Jacques Cécile démonte ici les rouages de la collusion croissante entre gouvernements, services secrets et sociétés commerciales au mépris de toute déontologie, jusqu'à inquiéter le lecteur quant à l'évolution des démocraties. Review: Amazon.


Chapleau, Philippe: Les mercenaires de l’Antiquité à nos jours, Edition Ouest-France, 2006, 127 p., ISBN: 2 7373 3778 X

Le mercenariat n'est pas moribond. L'extinction des " Affreux ", ces mercenaires à la réputation sulfureuse des années de la décolonisation, n'a constitué qu'une étape dans une histoire séculaire. Depuis l'époque des pharaons égyptiens, des hommes de guerre ont monnayé leur expérience militaire et ont combattu pour des rois, des cités ou des Etats qui n'étaient pas les leurs. Aujourd'hui, alors que la privatisation de la défense s'accélère, les mercenaires travaillent pour des sociétés militaires privées. Soldats sans armée, ils sont présents sur les champs de bataille d'Afrique, du Moyen-Orient et d'Amérique latine. Ils gèrent des bases militaires, assurent la logistique des unités en opérations extérieures, entraînent les forces spéciales et les pilotes de nombreuses armées... Ils assurent aussi la protection des ONG et des missions diplomatiques. Peut-être serviront-ils bientôt les Nations unies sous le casque bleu ? A l'heure d'une inquiétante abdication régalienne et où tout, même la sécurité, devient une marchandise, l'avenir du mercenariat n'a jamais semblé aussi prometteur. Déjà auteur de deux ouvrages sur le mercenariat et la privatisation de la guerre, Philippe Chapleau retrace ici l'histoire des guerriers antiques, des condottieri, des corsaires, des soldats de fortune, des " chiens de guerre " et des volontaires étrangers..., qui ont fait commerce de leurs armes et de leurs compétences militaires au cours des trente derniers siècles. Review: Amazon.


Chapleau, Philippe: Société Militaire Privées, Edition du Rocher, 2005, 305 p., ISBN: 2268054292

Le monde est entré dans une ère où la force militaire a cessé d'être la prérogative exclusive des armées nationales. Désormais, des sociétés militaires privées jouent un rôle essentiel, voire légitime, dans les domaines de la défense et de la politique étrangère. Des Etats cèdent même à la tentation d'opérations militaires livrées clefs en main par des entrepreneurs de guerre. Les hommes et les femmes qui travaillent pour ces prestataires de services militaires ne ressemblent guère aux mercenaires individuels de l'après Seconde Guerre mondiale. Les guerriers privés de ce début du XXIe siècle ne sont plus seulement d'anciens soldats des unités d'élite. Ils sont aussi pilotes d'hélicoptères, instructeurs, logisticiens, informaticiens, analystes. Leurs employeurs ont pignon sur rue. Les entreprises de ces condottieri modernes sont cotées en bourse ; leurs sites Internet vantent la qualité de leurs services et le large éventail de leurs prestations (formation, conseil, logistique, protection, renseignement, communications, soutien tactique). Parmi leurs clients, des ministères de la Défense, de l'Intérieur et des Affaires étrangères, des forces de police, des collectivités, des multinationales, des gouvernements étrangers décidés, eux aussi, à privatiser une partie de leurs pouvoirs régaliens. Ce livre est une enquête sur la stratégie de délégation adoptée par de nombreux États et sur les entreprises, principalement anglo-saxonnes, qui ont repris à leur compte des missions traditionnellement effectuées par les armées nationales et désormais confiées aux soldats sans armées des sociétés militaires privées. La collection L'Art de la Guerre publie les textes essentiels des cultures stratégiques de tous les continents. Review: Amazon.


Hubac, Olivier: Mercenaires et polices privées – La privatisation de la violence armée, Universalis, 2005, 192 p., ISBN: 2-85229-790-6

Deuxième force d'occupation armée en Irak, les mercenaires sont désormais organisés en véritables sociétés militaires privées. Sur fond de réduction des budgets militaires, d'une technicisation de la guerre et de l'émergence de la doctrine du " zéro mort ", les successeurs de Bob Denard exploitent désormais un véritable marché qui, avec celui de la sécurité privée, pèse plus de 100 milliards de dollars par an. L'activité croissante de ces sociétés remet en cause le monopole de la violence légitime exercée par les Etats. Doit-on y voir une nouvelle privatisation ou bien la mise en place d'une délégation de service public ? Ce livre confronte, sur le plan du droit comme sur le plan des pratiques, les modèles anglo-saxon et français, sur trois terrains d'observation : les interventions militaires, les opérations de police et la gestion des centres pénitentiaires. Review: Amazon.


Renou, Xavier: La privatisation de la violence?, Mercenaire et sociétés militaires privées au service du marché, Agone, 2005, 488 p., ISBN: 2-7489-0059-62717849920

La marchandisation s'étend désormais au domaine de la " violence légitime ", un secteur en plein essor qui représenterait déjà un bénéfice annuel de plus de 100 milliards de dollars. Les mercenaires de jadis sont aujourd'hui les employés de " sociétés militaires privées " parfaitement légales qui, renvoyant à un passé révolu l'image sulfureuse des " chiens de guerre ", tentent de se construire un rôle respectable dans la fiction d'un marché dispensateur de paix et de démocratie. Elles proposent pourtant à leurs clients (États, firmes multinationales, mouvements armés divers) les habituelles prestations d'ordre militaire : opérations de déstabilisation, combat, conseil en stratégie, logistique, etc. C'est ainsi, par exemple, qu'une firme dont la mission officielle de " formation à la transition démocratique" conduit au bombardement de civils recevra la bénédiction aussi bien de son client que des instances de contrôle. Parce qu'elles font pleinement jouer le mécanisme de circulation entre les secteurs militaires privé et public - l'une d'elles a recruté successivement l'ancien secrétaire à la Défense de Ronald Reagan, l'ancien secrétaire d'État lames Baker et l'ancien président des États-Unis George Bush père -, les sociétés mercenaires influent de plus en plus sur les politiques de " défense ". Parce qu'elles se mettent au service des multinationales qui exploitent les pays du Sud dotés en ressources minières, ces sociétés agissent comme les gardiens d'un ordre économique qui maintient dans la plus grande dépendance des pays en principe libérés depuis plusieurs décennies du joug colonial. Les sociétés militaires privées seraient-elles l'instrument privilégié du retour de l'impérialisme ? Review: Amazon.


Roche, Jean-Jacques: Insécurités publiques, sécurité privée?, Essais sur les nouveaux mercenaires, Economica, 2005, 420 p., ISBN-10: 2717849920

La privatisation de la sécurité signifie-t-elle le retour des Grandes Compagnies, aussi peu fiables sur le champ de bataille que dangereuses en dehors ? Au-delà des craintes légitimes que suscite cette évolution, le présent ouvrage analyse la privatisation de la sécurité à la fois comme la conséquence de la professionnalisation des armées et comme la résultante de la transformation des conflits. Review: Economica.



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