Prince: It’s Everyone’s Fault But Mine

Erik Prince, founder of Blackwater (which has now been sold and gone through at least two name changes), has a new book out in which he blames everyone but himself for his company’s well-earned bad reputation. And he seems to think that it was outrageous for the government to mistreat him so:

Blackwater founder Erik Prince gives his loudest rebuke yet of a government he says threw him under the bus in a new book, “Civilian Warriors: The Inside Story of Blackwater and the Unsung Heroes of the War on Terror.”

“If I could send a message back to my younger self, it would be: Do not work for the State Department at all,” he told Bloomberg Businessweek on his recent press circuit.

Really, Erik? That’s the lesson you’ve learned? Maybe instead you should go back and tell your younger self not to have your company violate federal law by exporting illegal weapons and not to have your workers open fire and kill innocent people on a regular basis. You had to pay $42 million to the State Department because you intentionally broke the law. They didn’t throw you under the bus, you threw yourself under the bus.

18 comments on this post.
  1. Reginald Selkirk:

    Prince was interviewed on NPR recently. He shouldn’t have done it, he does not come across as very sympathetic.

  2. Hairy Chris, blah blah blah etc:

    Not a nice man. Seems to want to be another Oliver North. Great.

  3. dingojack:

    Not to be confused with the artist formerly known as,,,,

    It seems to me that the mantra here is ‘mistakes were made but not by me
    Dingo

  4. marcus:

    We just got his book in our store (I am not the store buyer). I read the section on the Nisour Square killings. the short version as I read it:

    “Sure we fucked up, but it wasn’t our fault!!! Reasons! Stop picking on us we’re heroes. It was dangerous there! Waaaaaahh! :( “

    What an asshole.

  5. Michael Heath:

    As a taxpayer, I’m still angry the State Dept. outsources services like this. Such costs are outrageous relative to having the military do it.

    I wonder if outsourcing these services also increases the volume of misdeeds like those practiced by Mr. Prince and his companies.

  6. troll:

    Ed, I’m just surprised you expect anything better from merc scum.

  7. arakasi:

    I’m fine with his conclusion, though. I would be happier if his merry band of mercs never got involved with the State Department.

  8. D. C. Sessions:

    As a taxpayer, I’m still angry the State Dept. outsources services like this. Such costs are outrageous relative to having the military do it.

    Don’t be silly. Private industry will always do a better job than the Government can. Just look at schools, prisons, law enforcement, and the courts. Why should we settle for less than the best when it’s time to kill people?

  9. trucreep:

    This guy is a scumbag. That being said, I can see why he feels like he was “thrown under the bus.” The fucked up shit our government does is right up there with the disgusting shit Blackwater was up to. The difference being that a private entity can be a scapegoat when needed, especially to distract from the government’s own actions.

    This obviously doesn’t excuse anything Blackwater is responsible for. But with the mentality of a guy like Prince, I can see where his bitterness comes from.

  10. colnago80:

    This murdering rapist now lives in Abu Dhabi where he can escape being indited for his criminal activities.

  11. caseloweraz:

    Ha! I wonder if anyone else here is old enough to remember the Steve Allen Show in which “Steverino” pioneered the “camera on the street outside the studio” schtick. Steve had a sidekick who, whenever the camera caught a young man frowning, would say “Sure, sure; give everybody else a break but me, sure, sure.” I think it was a line from some film, but I have no idea which film.

    Erik Prince reminds me of that.

  12. colnago80:

    Re Michael Heath @ #5

    No different from privatizing schools, law enforcement and prisons. This is the Rethuglican shtick. This quaint notion began under the Michigan momzer’s hero, Ronnie the rat.

  13. freehand:

    Michael Heath: As a taxpayer, I’m still angry the State Dept. outsources services like this. Such costs are outrageous relative to having the military do it.

    Yes. The neocons and the Tea Party lunatics neglect to mention when they claim “private companies are more efficient” that the purpose of private companies is to make money. Not for the customer (or citizens) or even the company (country), but for the upper management (politicians).

    Michael: I wonder if outsourcing these services also increases the volume of misdeeds like those practiced by Mr. Prince and his companies.

    Yes, for at least two reasons:
    1. Many laws, particularly the Military Code of Justice, do not apply to civilians, even civilians subcontracting to the military. A woman employee of Haliburton a couple of years ago was raped multiple times in their overseas facility; the men were barely reprimanded. It’s not against American law to rape a woman overseas. If they had been soldiers they’d be in jail.

    2. Transparency. There are many laws requiring an accounting of behavior or finances of government personnel and facilities which do not apply to subcontractors.

    The GOP especially love to outsource for these reasons. Secret, criminal, behavior, plus bigger bribes. What’s not to like? And when companies are charged with crimes, what happens to the executives? Usually, they are interviewed on NPR and sell badly written books. Soldiers, even very high ranking ones, are held responsible.

  14. laurentweppe:

    Well of course he’s pissed: once upon a time, armed thugs who sold their capacity to cause harm to the highest bidder were eventuall rewarded whith riches, lands, and subjects to be disposed of at their whim. Now they get punished if their war crimes are too obvious to be plausibly denied.

  15. D. C. Sessions:

    Soldiers, even very high ranking ones, are held responsible.

    Well, yes, but that’s why so few of them report assaults. Bad enough to be raped, but to get a dishonorable discharge for it is enough to make most women keep quiet. As, of course, they well should.

  16. naturalcynic:

    @13 freehand:

    Many laws, particularly the Military Code of Justice, do not apply to civilians, even civilians subcontracting to the military. A woman employee of Haliburton a couple of years ago was raped multiple times in their overseas facility; the men were barely reprimanded. It’s not against American law to rape a woman overseas. If they had been soldiers they’d be in jail l.

    Maybe. But not if the rapist is a good buddy of the commander.

  17. D. C. Sessions:

    But not if the rapist is a good buddy of the commander.

    They don’t all have to be. One or two will do.

  18. freehand:

    Yeah, I know that our military often get away with outrageous behavior. But they don’t always; the legal mechanisms are there to seek justice, even if the good ole’ boy network doesn’t always follow through. Sometimes they do.

    But this is why the top brass who are corrupt and the politicians who have certain lobbyists on speed dial like to work with civilian contractors. It makes all of that so much easier. In the army, the top brass would have had to deny that the woman had been raped, or pressure her into refraining from accusations. But with civilians – no problem. Read and gnash yer teeth:

    http://abcnews.go.com/Blotter/story?id=3977702

    Also, it’s hard to give an old senator a cushy job in the army. Do a big enough favor for Haliburton, and there’s a key to the executive washroom waiting for you.

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