Fourteen Other Incidences of Blackwater Firing on Iraqi Civilians

The Bureau of Investigative Journalism says there are 14 incidences recorded in today’s Wikileaks dump alleging that Blackwater fired on Iraqi citizens (their site appears to be overloaded, so be persistent).

Two years before Nisour Square, on May 14 2005, the logs allege that Blackwater shot at a civilian car. The shooting reportedly killed the driver, but also injured his wife and child. According to the logs, the Blackwater guards drove on.

A year later, on May 2 2006, the logs claim that Blackwater guards opened fire on an ambulance attending the scene of an IED (Improvised Explosive Device) attack. Again, a civilian – the ambulance driver – was killed.

There are other cases where Blackwater guards were alleged to have shown disregard even for their own lives. On one occasion, US troops set up a road block after a car was seen dropping what looked like an IED. A Blackwater convoy ignored them, rushing past and detonating the bomb.

Feb 26 2007

While setting up the northern cordon site a Blackwater convoy bypassed heading south disregarding annihilator ed 3’ vehicle that was in the way. Convoy was struck by IED and did not appear to take any or significant damage.

Protests over Blackwater

In Iraq, outrage at Blackwater’s methods grew. A report dated February 2006 alleges that a Blackwater vehicle escorting US diplomats through Kirkuk had broken down and that guards opened fire on an approaching taxi, killing both civilian occupants.

The US Army report details how residents took to the streets in protest. Only after discussions with Iraqi security forces and local politicians, and the promise of a US State Department investigation, did the crowds disperse.

This last bit–the promises made in 2006, a year and a half before the Nissour Square incident, that State would conduct an investigation–are particularly troubling. Yes, I realize State was not going to stop using Blackwater in any case. But it’d be nice if we just fulfilled the promises we made to the Iraqis.

  1. harpie says:

    Iraq War LogsWikileaks

    [The connection to the actual logs isn’t working for me]

    The War LogsNYT

    Iraq War LogsDer Spiegel</i. [English],1518,724845,00.html

    Wikileaks IraqThe Guardian

    Irak: l’horreur ordinaire revelee par Wikilieaksle Monde [French]

    Iraq War LogsBureau of Investigative Journalism

  2. Jeff Kaye says:

    Not in the Wikileaks docs (to my knowledge) but of similar importance is H.P. Albarelli’s article today in Truthout documenting the killings by the contractors Unity Resources Group, which among other jobs has been a sub-contractor to RTI International in Iraq.

    The article is chilling journalism, and good to remember that Blackwater is not the only such agency, and that some (as URG above) are tied to monies from the USAID.

    The suit goes on to state: “This is not the first time URG employees have killed defenseless people in Baghdad. Last year, URG employees killed 72-year old Kays Juma when he failed to stop at a security checkpoint. On or about June 24, 2007, Defendant’s [URG] agents shot another civilian in the Karada neighborhood.” Kays Juma was an Australian and college professor who had lived in Baghdad for 25 years, and drove his vehicle on the same route nearly everyday for all of those years.

    Finally, Wolf’s suit alleges, “Defendants [URG] have acted with evil and malicious intents in promoting their business interests at the expense of innocent human life. Defendants have earned, and continue to earn, huge profits for their work in Iraq.”

  3. 1der says:

    Killing the defenseless doesn’t matter if you’re an American doing the killing because, if you’re Blackwater you know who has your back:

    The first battle for Fallujah (the second, in November 2004, resulted in the city’s capture by occupation forces) began when images circulated of four contractors being lynched from a bridge in the city. This new document confirms that the attack on Fallujah was designed to crush a symbol of resistance to the US occupation of Iraq:

    “On 31 March 2004, four American Blackwater contractors were killed and images of their bodies being burned and mutilated were broadcast on television around the world. Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld, CENTCOM

    Commander GEN Abizaid, and Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA) Ambassador Bremer decided a military response was needed immediately. Fallujah had become a symbol of resistance that dominated international headlines.”

    I remember reading on some left wing “propaganda” blog that all male residents of the city were turned back when they tried to evacuate on US military orders. Also remember some reports that quite possibly chemical weapons were used and that US wouldn’t let inspectors in. And Juan Williams wonders why they want to hurt him. Forever War, booyah. We are led by psychopaths. Also Riverbend.

    • bobschacht says:

      Also remember some reports that quite possibly chemical weapons were used and that US wouldn’t let inspectors in.

      “Chemical weapons” included phosphorus bombs, which have been outlawed for use by international agreement. In many cases, those bombs don’t kill you; they just make you wish you were dead.

      Bob in AZ

  4. Nell says:

    Even in the public record, there were a pile of ugly and lethal incidents of assaults and “incidental” violence against Iraqi civilians by Blackwater mercs. At the time of the Nisour Square massacre I posted a collection covering only the preceding year. It’s not hard to imagine there were many others that didn’t get reported on.

  5. Nell says:

    Jeanne d’Arc of the lamentably departed and archive-less Body and Soul blog was one of the first and most conscientious writers following the private armies of mercs in Iraq and Afghanistan. To reinforce Jeff’s point, there were and are many Blackwaters.

  6. bailey2739 says:

    It would be “nice” if Democrats would hold the Ligislators we elected accountable. Isn’t THAT enough to focus on? Is there one Democratic Senator up for reelection this year who deserves reelection? This election is NOT about how bad Republicand may be, it’s about sending a message to the Democratic Party that WE, not the Corporations they cater to, are the ONLY reason they are there.

  7. newz4all says:

    in the nyt just last night

    we were soooooooooooooooo surprised by this report ( well, okay, we weren’t really, not in the least. the usa / dod needs its dirty filthy scum mercenaries to do really evil sheet that is deniable )

    Efforts to Prosecute Blackwater Are Collapsing

    Nearly four years after the federal government began a string of investigations and criminal prosecutions against Blackwater personnel accused of murder and other violent crimes in Iraq and Afghanistan, the cases are beginning to fall apart, burdened by a legal obstacle of the government’s own making.

  8. rosalind says:

    (ot-ish: bmaz latest twitter: “MLB umpires throwing game to Yankees; ought to be a criminal investigation of this crap.” hmmm, if only there was somewhere for ew’s sports fans to commune with one another…hint…hint…rhymes with “crash balk”)