by ROBERT BECKHUSEN This is the end for Jonathan Keith “Jack” Idema. The vigilante adventurer and terrorist hunter once jailed in Afghanistan for running a private prison and torture shop has reportedly died in Mexico. According to local press reports first spotted by Robert Young Pelton, an emergency call placed Saturday led to the discovery of Idema’s [...]
Archived posts with tag ‘mercenaries’
Robert’s Latin America Round-Up
by ROBERT BECKHUSEN Central America Rains and mudslides created by a tropical depression swept into the region last week, killing 81 people from Nicaragua to southeastern Mexico. “The situation has got even worse, it’s still raining heavily in various parts of the country,” Salvadoran President Mauricio Funes said. El Salvador bore the brunt of the [...]
In two years of operations, a Virginia-based maritime security company has escorted commercial vessels through pirate-infested East African waters 300 times without incident. Nexus Consulting Group of Alexandria’s impressive record is the latest evidence of a surprising turn in the five-year-old international war on Somali pirates. More and more, for-profit security guards are taking over from the world’s navies on the maritime front lines.
If you thought it was bad that Washington is paying a shady French mercenary to do its dirty work in Somalia, you ain’t seen nothing yet. Just wait to you see our latest ally: an admirer of Osama bin Laden with a gory past.
A French-born mercenary with a criminal record and possible ties to several African coups and at least one murder is the latest agent of the U.S. government’s out-sourced war in Somalia, according to The New York Times‘ ace Africa reporter Jeffrey Gettleman and others.
The January hijackings underscored this reality and perhaps represented a tipping point for shipping companies. “Initially ship owners seemed to concur that they would do what they’ve always done and have navies patrol the region,” Claude Berube, a professor at the U.S. Naval Academy, told World Politics Review. “I think we’re on the cusp of the next threshold, in which privately owned escort vessels are more acceptable.”
by DAVID AXE To protect its vessels transiting the Indian Ocean from increasingly aggressive Somali pirates, in 2008 shipping firm Maersk hired a Tanzanian navy patrol boat and its crew. (Kenyan patrol boat pictured.) That move was only recently reported. “It’s a temporary solution that a shipper has hired a warship from another country, but [...]
Guinea Tribe Arms as War Fears Grow
by DAVID AXE In a bloodless coup in Guinea a year ago, Captain Moussa Dadis Camara seized power following the death of strongman Lansana Conte. But many in Guinea never accepted Camara’s rule. Three weeks ago, Camara’s former aide Aboubacar Diakite shot and wounded Camara. Since then, Camara has been recovering in Morocco while his [...]