08 September 2006

there are lives in the balance...join CAN...

that's the title track from the 1986 release from jackson browne (click here for full lyrics)...

i bring this up in relationship to the issue of torturing for profit and the outsourcing of work to private military contractors by the u.s. department of defense (et.al.)...which is primarily a recent phenomenon under secretary of defense donald rumsfeld...

here's what bennett freeman, a former u.s. state department official who has worked to help make american corporations more careful about human rights when they do business in places of violent conflict, has to say:

"Two years ago today, the US Army released the Fay/Jones report, which confirmed that prisoners at Abu Ghraib had been brutally abused by interrogators and translators working for private companies contracted by the US government and military. The report asked the Attorney General to look into the cases of abuse – yet two years later, most of these cases remain untouched. Victims and their relatives have had no access to justice, and private companies operating in zones of conflict are getting the message that torture is a part of business as usual."

fact is the u.s. government has outsourced billions of dollars in contracts to private companies, leaving to civilians some of the most essential and sensitive functions in the war, including providing security for u.s. government personnel and reconstruction projects, operating and maintaining weapons systems, translating during interrogations and conducting interrogations...despite weak reporting requirements placed on private security firms, allegations have surfaced implicating civilians working for the u.s. government in mistreatment of iraqi and afghan civilians...

learn more about amnesty international usa's efforts to hold private military contractors accountable for human rights violations in the "war on terror..."

join the corporate action network to find out more ways you can take action to ensure private military companies and other corporate actors are upholding human rights...

They sell us the President the same way
They sell us our clothes and our cars
They sell us every thing from youth to religion
The same time they sell us our wars
I want to know who the men in the shadows are
I want to hear somebody asking them why
They can be counted on to tell us who our enemies are
But they're never the ones to fight or to die

peace out <3

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