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Private Military Ecology Blog
last updated 27-Mar-2016
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At Private Military Ecology we explore unfolding trends and alternative futures for the use and understanding of Private Military and/or Security Companies and services. Late in 2013, we opened shop at WordPress: --a nicer, cleaner and more elegant experience. At WordPress, we discuss the changing 21st century security environment in addition to private military and security issues. Private Military Ecology @Blogger, however, is our oldest blogging space and you might find many posts there not available here or at WordPress.
Do not forget the Missing Five
missing five This week marks six months five British hostages have been held in captivity in Iraq, possibly Iran.

At noon on 29 May 2007, five British security guards from GardaWorld, a Canadian-owned security company, and a computer specialist working for BearingPoint, the US-based management consultancy firm, were kidnapped at gunpoint in Iraq. The kidnap occurred in broad daylight in central Baghdad. Dozens of men in police uniform seized them from a Finance Ministry building off Palestine Street. Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair then said, “We will do everything we possibly can to help.” A month later, there were signs of activity aimed at recovering the hostages. Subsequently news went cold. Early in September the story resurfaced, when on the eve of their 100th day in captivity Lt. Gen. Raymond T. Odierno, commander of Multi-National Corps - Iraq, was quoted saying, “We track every day where we think they might be. We have reason to think they are still alive.” This was more of a reply to a join-plea by the families of the victims than a periodic update on their faith. ‘They are sons, fathers and brothers who were working to support us’, the families’ plea stated. The Foreign Office went on to remind the media ‘not to publish the names or personal details of those who have been kidnapped. The situation remains that all information can potentially be of use to their abductors and endanger the captives.’ The opposite, i.e. the lack of information, however, also works to the kidnapers’ advantage, as the hostages loose negotiation value. Upon the release of a video of the men a few days ago, the Foreign Office was reported noting that “although there is much going on behind the scenes, it is extremely sensitive and we can’t go into details about it.” For this reason, we shall say no more and hope that indeed, the British authorities are working frantically on a swift and positive outcome. Where there is a political will, often there is a way. Their safe release will not turn around the approval ratings of Prime Minister Gordon Brown in areas of defense. It would neither be a story sexy enough to spin as yet another set of freshly released humanitarian tourists. However, it would give their life back to families paralyzed by the crisis, perhaps on time for Christmas. Please do not forget the Missing Five.

If you live in the UK, contact your MP and express your concern about the faith of the Missing Five British contractors. Members of parliament are bound to be aware of the sensitivity of public information concerning this issue as well as the confidentiality of your personal communications. If in doubt, raise the issue and note that you do not want to endanger their life by registering your concern for their plight: click here

If you live in Canada, contact your MP and express your concern about five missing British workers employed by a Canadian-owned firm. Same observations as above apply: click here

If you live in the US, contact your Congressperson and express your concern about five missing British contractors who were assisting in the reconstruction of Iraq. Same observations as above apply: click here

November 25, 2007





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