The government doesn’t give an account of their deaths, so Obama uses mercenaries to disguise what he is doing.
While he ramps up in Syria and Iraq, it is important to remember that Barack Obama uses mercenaries.
How mercenaries complicate this escalation and what Americans know about it was recently addressed in Foreign Policy.
Moreover, the role, scope, and size of military contractors are never mentioned when there is a new announcement of a U.S. troop deployment to Iraq or Syria. Journalists rarely ask Pentagon spokespersons or military commanders how many contractors will be deployed alongside the troops. On the rare occasions they do, the military representative never has any estimates available. In February 2015, when asked whether outside companies were involved in screening Syrian opposition fighters, the response of Rear Adm. John Kirby, then spokesman for the Department of Defense, neatly encapsulated this utter lack of transparency: “Whether there’s contractors involved, I just couldn’t say.”
Not only is it impossible to get reliable, cumulative numbers for contractors deployed or killed, but there are no available government estimates for how many of the deceased war-zone contractors were U.S. citizens. According to one estimate by the Professional Services Council, an industry trade group, only about 32 percent of contractor fatalities between 2001 and 2010 were citizens. The remaining 68 percent are non-Americans who are hired by U.S. or non-U.S. firms that have won a military contract.
Remember the controversy during the Bush Administration over Blackwater? According to Foreign Policy, Obama’s use of privately contracted mercenaries is “unprecedented.” He has surpassed his rival.
Mercenaries are convenient because their deaths can be ignored and easily left out of the body count. If the public never knows about them the public really has no idea how brutal the conflict is becoming.
For example, “Under Obama, more private military contractors have died in Iraq and Afghanistan than all the U.S. troops [who died while] deployed to those countries.” That means, when people wonder about the lives lost, the number is kept deceptively low.
This is a man who was given a Nobel Peace Prize!