Friday, July 25, 2008

Did Blackwater Protect Obama? Slate Reports No

Did Blackwater protect Senator Barack Obama during his trip to Afghanistan and Iraq? I don't see why anyone would have a problem with it if they wanted to protect the life of a US senator and top presidential candidate. Blackwater has a PERFECT track record protecting American government officials in the world's nastiest war zones.

And Blackwater has protected almost every single US senator and congressman who has visited Afghanistan and Iraq over the past few years - even when Obama visited Iraq in 2006.

Neither the Obama campaign nor Blackwater is saying anything, though, and the Secret Service is implying strongly that the answer is no.

Blogger Christopher Beam saw my question on July 19 and, without attribution, reported on Slate:
But Obama isn't just any globetrotting senator. He's a presidential nominee, which means all his security arrangements at home and abroad are made not by the State Department but by the Secret Service. The Obama campaign refused to discuss his security detail, but a spokesman for the Secret Service told me that private contractors were not accompanying Obama in Iraq or Afghanistan. "We don't utilize contractors," said spokesman Ed Donovan. "We use military law enforcement and Secret Service."


Oveja Negra said...

Obama in Afghanistan, I doubt that his security team bring their own armored SUVs with them, they are contractors from WPPS.

Obama in Afghanistan.

Standish said...

Yes, I agree. It seems unnecessarily costly to fly armored SUVs to the other side of the world, when the US Embassy has plenty available in-country for visiting VIPs. In the exhaustive press reports covering the Obama trip, I saw no mention of any vehicles being flown in. Now that the dangerous part of the senator's travel is over, the Obama campaign can't say "no comment" based on security concerns. Senators Hagel and Reed were also on the trip. I wonder what their offices would say if a reporter asked them.