William Arkin has a post on the proliferation of what he calls the “counter-everything” trend–organizations targeting transnational organizations that sell drugs or people or whatever. He ends it by wondering why this is all getting worse–why borders are more porous after 10 years of purportedly combating transnational whatevers.
Finally, one has to ask, with all of the enhanced intelligence collection and sharing and border control that is part of the post 9/11 world, why is this problem getting worse? How is that possible, that borders are more porous? So much for the war against terrorism.
You might start with the fact that in response to a threat posed by unprivileged enemy combatants (AKA terrorists) we sent out a bunch of men, not wearing uniforms, to engage in warfare that mirrors those other unprivileged combatants.
But the problem becomes even more apparent when you read Arkin’s list of contractors getting rich of the pursuit of transnational criminal organizations.
Other contractors providing intelligence support to the trafficking empire include: BAE Systems, Celestar, Delex Systems, Duer Advanced Technology & Aerospace (DATA), FedSys, Inc., General Dynamics Information Technology, L-3 STRATIS, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, Prosync Technology Group, and SAIC. Parsons Corporation is working on the methamphetamine/precursor chemicals problem set for the DIA.
My favorite among these is BAE, which almost caught money laundering to set up a slush fund for covert ops, until the Saudis threatened to stop partnering with us to combat the terrorism that Saudis citizens were then and probably are still funding.
I guess DOD wanted to bring in experts on transnational crime.
Then Tim Shorrock got into the laugh, and pointed out that SAIC recently got caught running a giant kickback scheme to defraud NYC. Lucky for SAIC the Obama Administration hasn’t ended the fetish for Deferred Prosecution Agreements that let companies like this continue chasing transnational thieves.
And then there’s the really seedy pick: of Parsons Corporation–they were literally deemed the “most wasteful” Iraq contractor, making them a bit of a poster child for corruption–“working on the methamphetamine/precursor chemicals problem set for the DIA.” Mind you, when Parsons was last robbing federal taxpayers and even now, they billed themselves primarily as a construction company (they’re famous for schools in Iraq that started crumbling before they were finished)–though they have branched out into the spook business. And yet they’ve sold themselves as drug experts to the Defense Intelligence Agency.
I simply can’t imagine why the transnational crime problem continues to grow.