Vi ricordate la Blackwater, che in un precedente articolo avevamo menzionato per le azioni non troppo pulite nei paesi occupati dagli Usa? Bene, il Guardian riferisce che il dipartimento di stato dell’attuale amministrazione ha offerto l’immunità per la società di mercenari, colpevole della morte di 17 persone uccise a Bagdad. Come ha affermato un membro del comitato giudiziario del Senato, “In quest’amministrazione la credibilità ha superato ogni limite”. Nello stesso articolo del Guardian, si fa riferimento ad un report che parla di 27 miliardi di dollari stanziati in Iraq, per riparare la diga di Mosul, che ancora attende miglioramenti significativi. In pratica, ancora niente dei famigerati aiuti.
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To see this story with its related links on the Guardian Unlimited site, go toImmunity offer to Blackwater security guards causes outrage Ewen MacAskill in Washington Wednesday October 31 2007 The Guardian
The Bush administration faced intense criticism yesterday after it emerged that the state department had offered immunity to Blackwater security guards allegedly involved in a shooting spree in Baghdad that left 17 dead.
The immunity offer was made by state department investigators in return for information about the September 16 killings. The offer does not mean a trial cannot be mounted but it would compromise any prosecution case and practically ensure there would be no convictions.
Blackwater, a Virginia-based company employed by the state department, was guarding a diplomatic convoy outside the relative safety of Baghdad’s Green Zone when it said it came under fire from insurgents. But the Iraqi government says the security guards opened fire without provocation.
Private security firms have until now occupied a legal limbo, operating free from Iraqi and US law. The Iraqi cabinet yesterday approved draft legislation to end such impunity. But the US has no obligation to adhere to Iraqi law.
The state department initially carried out the investigation into the killings but, because of its involvement, passed responsibility to the FBI and the US justice department.
The state department spokesman, Sean McCormack, yesterday insisted that the secretary of state, Condoleezza Rice, still believed anyone responsible should be prosecuted. Her view was: “If the facts lead us to the conclusion that there are those who broke rules, laws or
regulations, they must be held to account.”
He sought to make a distinction between “limited” immunity offered in this case and “blanket” immunity. But the difference is probably academic because even limited immunity could complicate any evidence presented by a prosecution.
Henry Waxman, the Democratic chairman of the House oversight committee which has been investigating Blackwater, wrote to Ms Rice yesterday asking for details of the immunity offer, including who decided to grant it and whether she had known about it. He said: “This rash grant of immunity was an egregious misjudgment.”
Patrick Leahy, the Democratic chairman of the Senate judiciary committee, said: “In this administration, accountability goes by the boards.”
In a separate development, the US congressional investigator into billions of dollars allocated for Iraq reconstruction, Stuart Bowen, yesterday published a report that said a $27m US effort to help Iraq repair the Mosul dam, “has yet to yield significant improvements”. There was a danger, he said, that the dam could burst, flooding large parts of Iraq.
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