However, some interesting points have come out of this story. One Western security source explained:
A source within the Palestinian Authority echoed these sentiments:Abbas likes the U.S. approach to VIP security,
which is unobtrusive, quiet and highly professional.
As it turns out, the United States already funds the training of the PA security detail. The World Tribune writes,Abu Mazen [Abbas] was very impressed by the security around President [George] Bush during his visit to Ramallah [in January 2008].... Abbas has already discussed this with senior U.S. officials.
The United States, as part of an $86 million program, has been financing the training and equipping of PA forces. In January, a battalion of PA National Security Force officers was sent for training to a U.S.-financed police center outside Amman. The center trained more than 30,000 Iraqi police officers from 2004 through 2007.Abbas is opposed by several members of his own Fatah movement and does not trust Force 17, one of the units responsible for his protection. One source said,
Force 17 has no loyalty to Abbas.... They are all Arafat's people and this makes Abbas uncomfortable. He does not feel they will protect him.Only time will tell if Blackwater gets a contract to train the PA guards. However, the US officials responsible for enhancing PA security are said to support Blackwater as a means of significantly bolstering PA capabilities.