Blackwater Founder Erik Prince: War on Terror Has Become Too Big

Post Date: May 30, 2015 | Category: Around the World

Erik Prince

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When the war on terror has lost the founder of Blackwater, counterterrorism efforts could be in real trouble. Why Erik Prince thinks the national security state has become too big. Erik Prince is not the kind of man one expects to make the case for slashing U.S. intelligence and military budgets. After 9-11, his company, Blackwater, expanded exponentially, winning contracts to protect diplomats and politicians in Iraq and to train and work with CIA paramilitary teams hunting terrorists.

In an interview, Prince said the national security state he once served has grown too large.

“America is way too quick to trade freedom for the illusion of security,” he told The Daily Beast. “Whether it’s allowing the NSA to go way too far in what it intercepts of our personal data, to our government monitoring of everything domestically and spending way more than we should. I don’t know if I want to live in a country where lone wolf and random terror attacks are impossible ‘cause that country would look more like North Korea than America.”

Today Prince is out of the contracting business and is promoting a book telling his side of the Blackwater story. To be sure, he accuses Democrats of abusing state power to wage a political war on him and the media of aiding and abetting that campaign.

Prince’s new book, Civilian Warriors, recounts in detail the battles Prince waged in the last decade over his company. He writes, for example, about a conversation at one point with his accountant, who claimed an IRS auditor told him that he was never under such pressure to get someone as he was in the case of Prince. He takes shots at the left-wing lawyers who brought civil suits related to the incident at Nisour Square, a traffic circle in Baghdad where Blackwater contractors killed 11 Iraqis. Prince says the evidence shows the incident was a firefight and not, as his critics alleged at the time, a massacre of an unarmed crowd. And he complains that the media coverage of Blackwater was biased and often wrong.

But despite attacking Blackwater’s many critics in the book, Prince also sounds a bit like them when discussing what he considers President Obama’s counterterrorism policies.

“I am all in favor of killing terrorists,” Prince said. “But the fact that [Anwar] al-Awlaki was killed and his 16-year-old son, born in Colorado, was killed with no due process other than that he got on the ‘kill list’ is troubling to me.” The Obama administration has claimed that Awlaki, an American citizen who was killed in a drone strike in 2011, was an operational leader of al Qaeda’s affiliate in Yemen.

Prince said he believes al-Awlaki’s son was deliberately targeted in a second strike after the one that killed Awlaki. The Obama administration has said that strike was not targeting Awlaki’s son, but someone else.

Prince also said the over-reliance on drone warfare in the Middle East and South Asia would likely reap “a bitter harvest,” because of the scale of collateral damage from drone strikes. He said it was wiser to send in small teams to such denied areas to find and target terrorists, or outsource this kind of work to local surrogates.

Prince was most animated on the subject of the military and intelligence budgets.

“The left wants to protect social programs, the right wants to protect defense and intelligence spending and all the rest. I say the defense and intelligence world will be better off with a smaller budget. They would be less encumbered by bloat and able to maneuver the way they used to be able and not trip over themselves,” he said.

Prince said the case of Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, a Nigerian national who nearly blew up an airplane full of passengers on Christmas Day in 2009, illustrated this case. “If it wasn’t for a sweaty groin, that airplane would have blown up,” Prince said. “His father warned the CIA station in Abuja, they ignored intercepts, State Department never did a thing with his visa.” Prince said that despite $80 billion a year in spending, U.S. intelligence had nothing to do with thwarting the Nigerian national.

Today, Prince said, he is focusing his business on expanding markets in Africa. He said he will never work for the U.S. government again. When asked if he would run for president, Prince said there was no chance that he would. For now he is not that focused on presidential politics at all. But when that election cycle does roll around, Prince said, “I will support vigorously whoever commits to reduce the size of government the most.”


By Eli Lake of The Daily Beast


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2 Responses to “Blackwater Founder Erik Prince: War on Terror Has Become Too Big”

  1. Avatar

    Comment made by Carlos Dyer on May 31st 2015 at 9:38 AM:

    Erik Prince still the best at what he does
    he has accomplish more than others in his time rather than those who take centuries to do what he has done he is a very unique man regardless what his critics have to say

  2. Avatar

    Comment made by ukrainegirlslut on Sep 10th 2019 at 9:58 PM:

    Foreign governing bodies gave millions to foundation while Clinton was at State Dept

    The Clinton Foundation accepted vast amounts from seven foreign governments during Hillary Rodham [url=https://www.bitchute.com/channel/ukrainianwomen/]ukraine wife[/url] Clinton’s tenure as secretary of state, Including one donation that violated its ethics agreement with the national government, basis officials disclosed Wednesday.

    Most of the positive effects were possible because of exceptions written into the foundation’s 2008 agreement, which included limits on foreign government donations.

    The offer, Reached before Clinton’s nomination amid concerns that countries could use platform donations to gain favor with a Clinton led State Department, Allowed governments that had previously donated money to continue making positive factors at similar levels. Government from giving money to the charity closely from the secretary of state.

    In one situation, Foundation officials credited they should have sought approval in 2010 from the State Department ethics office, As required by the agreement for new government donors, Before processing a $500,000 donation from the Algerian feds.

    The money was given to assistance with earthquake relief in Haiti, the inspiration said. back then, Algeria, Which has sought a closer partnership with Washington, Was spending heavily to lobby the State agency on human rights issues.

    While the cornerstone has disclosed foreign government donors for years, It has not during the past detailed the donations that were accepted during Clinton’s four year stint at the State Department.

    A foundation spokesman said Wednesday that the donations all went to fund the organization’s philanthropic work almost. for certain products, the walls said, Foreign government donations were part of multiyear grants that had been awarded before Clinton’s appointment to pay for particular charitable efforts, Such as incentives to lower the costs of HIV and AIDs drugs and curb greenhouse gas emissions.

    “As with other global charities, We rely on the support of folks, organisations, firms and governments who have the shared goal of addressing critical global challenges in a meaningful way, Said the spokesperson, Craig Minassian. federal, for example Kuwait, Qatar but also Oman.

    Other nations that donated included quarterly report, Norway and trinidad.

    the basis presents a unique political challenge for Clinton, And one that has recently become a cause of concern among Democrats as she prepares to launch an almost certain second bid for the presidency.

    nearly, if ever, Has a potential commander in chief been so closely included in an organization that has solicited financial support from foreign governments. The Post found that the inspiration, Begun by former leader Bill Clinton, Has raised nearly $2billion since its birth in 2001. Political contenders, steer clear of outside influence over national leaders. But the foundation has given donors a way to potentially gain favor with the Clintons outside the standard political limits.

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    A review of foundation disclosures shows that at least two foreign governments Germany and the United Arab Emirates began giving in 2013 after the funding restrictions lapsed when Clinton left the obama administration. Some foreign governments that had been supporting the muse before Clinton was appointed, which include Saudi Arabia, Did not give while she was in office and have since resumed donating.

    footings officials said last week that if Clinton runs, They will consider doing their best to address concerns over the role of foreign donors.

    “We will continue to ensure the Foundation’s policies and practices regarding support from international partners are appropriate, Just as we did when she served as admin of State, the walls said in a statement.

    Foreign governments had been major donors to the foundation before barak nominated Clinton to become secretary of state in 2009. When the foundation released a list of its donors responsible for in 2008, As a result of the agreement with the obama administration, It shared, as, That Saudi Arabia had given through $10million and $25million.

    in most cases, the cornerstone said, governing bodies that continued to donate while Clinton was at the State Department did so at lower levels than before her appointment.

    Foundation officials said Wednesday that the ethics review process required under the 2008 agreement for new donors or for existing foreign government donors desperate to “Materially climb” Their support was never initiated during Clinton’s State dept,system years.

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