The good news is, the usual suspects have missed this thread and we have been spared their inanities.
The bad news is, this thread is dead.
Don’t know if I can revive it or not, but I will make some observations.
I’m not anti-Blackwater. I’m not one that calls people who work for Private Military Corporations “mercenaries”. I spent 29 months down range as a contractor. Never had any dealings with Blackwater people, but did have occasion to observe DynCorp, ArmorGroup, USPI, SOC-SMG, EODT, Wolfpack, and Enrys. I got no beef with any of them.
Blackwater gets lots of hate directed their way, most of it undeserved, most of it from anti-war, anti-American, anti-capitalist propagandists.
Having said all that, I’m pondering the implications for the Counter Insurgent Supportive blogosphere of Tier I milbloggers involving themselves in the public relations campaigns of for-profit Private Military Corporations. Pondering, not criticizing. I’m not sure I’m against the idea enough to criticize anything.
When a blog or group of blogs and contributors and commenters acts as a People’s Information Support Team on behalf of elements of the United States Armed Forces who, for a variety of legal and political reasons, are not free to engage the domestic target audience, that can be construed by people like me as Civilian Irregular Information Operators exercising their unencumbered First Amendment rights to persuade, change, and influence. The intended beneficiaries of such efforts are usually the troops, sometimes their leaders, and occasionally the C-in-C. Everybody who participates in such efforts, either as blogger, commenter or lurker, has their own motivations. I think it is safe to assert that patriotism, nationalism, respect for our warriors, disdain for internal oppositional elements and apprehension that domestic enemies, if left uncountered, will combine with foreign enemies to hurt our favorite Westphalian nation state all help motivate participants.
Does a for-profit Private Military Corporation with a robust public relations effort and free access to the domestic target audience need a Paramilitary Information Support Team?
Does a for-profit Private Military Corporation deserve the same respect, good will, and positive affirmation usually afforded by milbloggers to the military?
This comment is long enough already and its getting late. If anybody reads this and wishes to continue the discussion I’ll have it up over at my place.
As you can see, my comment above is less about Blackwater than it is about the gray areas between civilian and military, for-profit and inherently governmental, public relations and psychological operations, Irregulars and Regulars.