The sanitized version of American foreign policy asserts that the United States is hard at work promoting democratic values around the world in the face of attacks from totalitarian ideologies ranging from communism during the Cold War to Islamic fundamentalism today. Every once in a while an incident occurs that contradicts this reassuring rhetoric by revealing the secret underside of American policy, which is far more concerned with propping up pliable regimes that serve the interests of U.S. multinational corporations than it is with any meaningful notion of democracy. The November 13, 1995 bombing of the Saudi Arabian National Guard (SANG) headquarters and an adjacent building housing a U.S. military training mission is one such incident.

"We are not mercenaries because we are not pulling the triggers. We train people to pull the triggers. Maybe that makes us executive mercenaries." - one of Vinnell's men



Salary comparisons for
US soldiers
private security firms

in Iraq

Today, there are tens of thousands of men and women who were called away from their jobs and families - they had entered the National Guard, which requires under most circumstances a six month training period and then just two weeks of active service each year - because their nation required them to serve in the deserts of Iraq and in the treacherous streets of cities deeply angry with the US occupation.

According to figures current during the active war a year ago, the salary of a soldier in the lowest rank who has one year's service was $15,480 a year - only a thousand dollars more than the average pay for an usher in a movie theatre in the USA. The pay for an experienced corporal of three years of service was $19,980 a year.

For this, US soldiers are on the frontlines in Iraq, risking their lives; with over 700 dead, and many more returning home amputees and permanently impaired, they have much at risk, yet their nation recompenses them with minimal pay.

Meanwhile, the government pays private firms between $500 and $1,500 a day for the experienced military personnel they supply in Iraq. That works out to mercenaries who often earn between $150,000 and $250,000 a year.

In stark terms, a mercenary works in a less risky position, providing support to fighting men or guarding oil wells instead of going on patrols in hostile territory under enemy fire and assault - and makes 10 or 20 times as much money as a soldier who serves his country instead of a corporation.

There are mercenaries making more than General Tommy Franks, who commanded the US armed forces in last year's war in Iraq. With more than 36 years of service, Franks' annual base pay was $153,948.

Is it possible to sustain an army when mercenaries for private contractors take less risks and earn 10 times as much as soldiers? Is it possible to delude Iraqis and Americans alike that a reconstruction budget is for reconstruction, when a quarter of it pays for private military forces? Is it possible to successfully change the color of the corpses in Iraq? Is this sort of warfare sustainable, and more tellingly, is it by any measure ethical? Time will tell.

The author, Huck Gutman, a former Fulbright Visiting Professor at Calcutta University, is Professor of English at the University of Vermont. 

I'm betting that this is the info. that will turn the military families against this war!



visit the websites of:

a NORTHRUP company
For more than a quarter century, Vinnell has been an innovative leader in the training and support of international military forces. We provide the full spectrum of developmental services—from training of the individual soldier to the command and staff training of senior military officers. We also provide logistical and maintenance support from unit to depot level and have a proven record of fielding and supporting major weapon systems. Our training activities cover everything from squad- to brigade-level tactical training. We conduct force-on-force exercises using the latest in training technology, including the Multiple Integrated Laser Engagement System (MILES).

The Steele Foundation is strategically located throughout the Middle East to provide your organization with real-time intelligence, a quick response anywhere in Iraq, and local insight. In order to achieve these objectives, The Steele Foundation provides 24/7 operations in Iraq coordinated and supported by four interlinked offices located in Kuwait City, Baghdad, Amman, and Riyadh - which in turn are supported by Steele Foundation offices on five continents.
The Steele Foundation

the Steele Foundation  has 15,000 'agants' on the streets of Iraq. you can imagine how many mercenaries it has on the 'streets' of many many other countries in the world. this is just the tip of the ice


Executive Outcomes
coupla pages of hisory

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