Decline and Fall
As if having them run around Iraq like loose cannons wasn't bad enough, Blackwater is building an Air Force. Via Scholars & Rogues:
Security company Blackwater U.S.A. is buying Super Tucano light combat aircraft from the Brazilian manufacturer Embraer. These five ton, single engine, single seat aircraft are built for pilot training, but also perform quite well for counter-insurgency work.... The bubble canopy provides excellent visibility. This, coupled with its slow speed (versus jets), makes it an excellent ground attack aircraft.
Blackwater's been in negotiations with several state governments in the United States. Blackwater met recently with California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger about doing disaster response in California. They're opening up a new private military base in San Diego. Another one is in Mount Carroll, Illinois. They have applied for operating licenses in every coastal U.S. state.
That's right, folks: the U.S. military whose expenditures are almost half of the total military spending worldwide needs private military bases in the United States for some reason.
What might that reason be? Perhaps it has something to do with National Security Presidential Directive NSPD-51, which lays out exactly how the Executive Branch would run the entire government in the event of a "Catastrophic Emergency," which could be anything from a terrorist attack to the next Katrina, as far as the ambiguous wording of the directive is concerned:
Does the presently-scheduled '08 presidential election count as a "Catastrophic Emergency"?
[...] I just can't help but see a mercenary force of palace guards looming in the not-too-distant future.
Go read the rest and the comments. Tinfoil hat recommended. Also see:
sapper - a Viet Cong or NVA commando, usually armed with explosives
If there's going to be a domestic civilian mercenary force in this country, there's going to have to be a civilian insurgency to deal with it. This time, we get to be the Viet Cong. Whoopee.