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I saw active service in conventional, clandestine and covert units of the South African Defence Force. I was the founder of the Private Military Company (PMC) Executive Outcomes in 1989 and its chairman until I left in 1997. Until its closure in 1998, EO operated primarily in Africa helping African governments that had been abandoned by the West and were facing threats from insurgencies, terrorism and organised crime. EO also operated in South America and the Far East. I believe that only Africans (Black and White) can truly solve Africa’s problems. I was appointed Chairman of STTEP International in 2009 and also lecture at military colleges and universities in Africa on defence, intelligence and security issues. Prior to the STTEP International appointment, I served as an independent politico-military advisor to several African governments. I am a contributor to The Counter Terrorist magazine. All comments in line with the topics on this blog are welcome. As I consider this to be a serious look at military and security matters, foul language and political or religious debates will not be entertained on this blog.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

NEW YORK TIMES PEDDLES LIES IN ARTICLE

They say if you tell a lie enough times, it eventually becomes “the truth”.

The New York Times have certainly tried to keep up with that adage, prompting me to write to them a few minutes ago.

My letter read as follows:

Pretoria,

South Africa

15th May 2011

Dear Editor,

It was with interest that I read your article headlined Secret Desert Force Set Up by Blackwater’s Founder dated 14 May 2011 by your journalists Mark Mazzetti and Emily B Hager.

As the founder and chairman of the now defunct Executive Outcomes, I found it of even greater interest that they state in their article as fact that Executive Outcomes was “a South African company notorious for staging coup attempts...in Africa”.

Indeed, the only fact in their reference to Executive Outcomes is that it was a South African company.

Had your journalists done even the most basic of research, they would have discovered that:

1. Executive Outcomes was intimately involved in drafting the South African government’s legislation on foreign military companies

2. Executive Outcomes had a licence from the South African government to conduct its business

3. Executive Outcomes only accepted contracts from legitimate, internationally recognised governments. This included South Africa, Angola, Botswana, Sierra Leone and Indonesia to name a few

4. The South African media apologised to me for allowing themselves to be used to perpetuate disinformation on both myself and my company.

The book Executive Outcomes: Against all Odds, was written by myself and published in 2007 by Galago Publishing, detailing the company’s origins, contracts and activities. To date, no information I gave in the book has been refuted by any party.

I personally remain opposed to coups and I also run a blog where I have written, warned against and prevented coups in Africa (http://eebenbarlowsmilitaryandsecurityblog.blogspot.com/2011/02/warning-against-joining-planned-coup.html)

However, as your paper accepted and published a factually incorrect comment on Executive Outcomes, despite it being libellous, I reserve the right to take legal action. Meanwhile I demand that your journalists furnish me with proof of any coup attempts planned or staged by the defunct Executive Outcomes. Should your journalists argue that the failed coup attempt in Equatorial Guinea is an example of such an action, may I point out that Executive Outcomes closed its doors in January 1998. It therefore cannot, in any way, be linked to a coup attempt several years later. If any ex-Executive Outcomes men were recruited by the planners of such a coup, Executive Outcomes can still not be linked to the attempt.

I look forward to your comments.

Sincerely,

EEBEN BARLOW

(Signed)

I received a reply back that read:

THANK YOU for writing The New York Times. We are grateful to readers who take the time to help us report thoroughly and accurately. Your message will reach the appropriate editor or reporter promptly.

I will keep you all informed of their actions and responses as I in particular want to know when EO acted in the manner they claim it did.

49 comments:

John said...

Good Morning Eeben,

Excellent response to the "paper of mis-record, lies, and tall tales in support of their masters" - there is a reason the NYT readership is going down the toilet.

I'll pass this on to whomever will read it as well - the bedrock of our freedoms here in the US are two basic, and first amendments of the Constitution, the First and the Second Amendment. When the media fails utterly in their constitutionally protected, and thus given by their Creator, rights to report the truth we all suffer greatly. I beleive Dante talked about betraying ones benefactor.
Part of the greater War against freedom being waged on all fronts by the progressive movement - sapping the poltical will to vote with full knowledge of the facts. Quite important - and something I believe you have been closely involved with in your country as well. Hard to believe an apology from a media outlet 8 years after the fact - post fatal damage to an organization/country/people etc.

Best of success on hammering them in the courtroom - the more money removed from the coffers of these common criminal/terrorist organizations the better. Knock out a leg of that trinity.

Regards,
John

P.S - Much apologies on the botched thoughts earlier on you consulting/teaching/lecturing to the various military acadamies - that is exactly what is in you intro.

P.P.S - a good number of blogs have lost their postings over the latest couple of days. I do not know what to think of that yet as they are mostly conservative blogs in nature.

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

I am really just tired of the perpetual lies, John. I also gave an undertaking to many who served in EO that I would not sit by idly while others tarnished their good name. I hope the NYT will have the common decency to give clarity on their lies.

Misreporting causes massive damage. Not only can it destroy entire companies, it can also create mistrust, anger and division between people. Having “been there, done that” I truly hope that all those who have been subject to media lies and disinformation will start making their voices heard.

No apology necessary – I was just surprised when I got onto my blog a couple of minutes ago and found your comment removed. I hope those who have suffered from their blogs disappearing can get things sorted and their blogs back again. Perhaps I was just lucky to get mine back more or less intact.

Rgds,

Eeben

John said...

Good Morning Eeben,

Another interesting post - I am sending this one over blind so I think some salt may be in order here.

http://patdollard.com/2011/05/blackwater-founder-building-secret-desert-army/

Regards,
John

P.S. PDollards site has been whacked many times by hackers - his place is pretty nasty towards the current political class so it is not surprising. Interesting reads at times but not as classy as your site.

John said...

Good Morning Eeben,

Sorry about that -sheesh-the link I just sent was the article you ripped into the NYT on.

Many apologies.

John

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

Thanks for the link John but I had already seen it. Yes, bags of salt were required after reading their scurrilous article. One would think that they had journalists that understood the word “research”. Sadly, they appear not to have them.

I don’t know why I often lose comments but I will try to find out. It is very frustrating though.

Rgds,

Eeben

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

Thanks John but no apologies needed. What if it was one I had not seen? Then I would have missed it.

Rgds,

Eeben

reflexivefire.com said...

I also wrote a brief reaction to the NYT piece, having a similar reaction to the bit about EO.

"http://reflexivefire.com/2011/05/15/blackwater-sets-up-mercenary-army-in-the-uae/"

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

I saw your comment at http://reflexivefire.com/2011/05/15/blackwater-sets-up-mercenary-army-in-the-uae/ and appreciate your coming up for EO, Jack.

I also enjoy your blog – keep up the good work – and keep your head down.

Rgds,

Eeben

matt said...

Hey Eeben, I made an edit on my post to reflect this matter. Shameful to say the least. It is amazing to me that reporters would say such things without first checking their facts? It makes me wonder what else is factually incorrect in the article? I was hoping that someone from R2 would come up to correct the record, as opposed to letting the media control the information outflow or filling in the blanks with whatever supports an agenda.

Gatvol said...

Most of the folks I know regard the NY Times in the same light as another famous piece of journalism in the states. "The Enquirer". Would love to see them in court, but I would bet the offer of Go Away Money would be the first thing on the table from their side.

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

Thanks Matt, I saw the edit to your post as well as the one you posted on Dangerroom.

It seems as though they (NYT) have taken it upon themselves to make new claims about EO. As I wrote them, I reserve the right to take legal action for this shameful comment.

Fact checking seems to be something they are unaware of. Instead, they will dominate the information flow by a lie.

Rgds,

Eeben

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

I will have to see if they have common decency to even respond, let alone apologise, Gatvol.

By the way, have you figured out dates yet?

Rgds,

Eeben

Joe1172 said...

Hi Eeben,
it's been a while since I have visited your blog. Due to weak internet access in AFG, I just didn't have the opportunity.

I have read the Eric Prince article yesterday as well and found it quite interesting, as some of my mates are working on this contract. Just met 2 of them here in Dubai.

The section about EO being notorious for plots in Africa annoyed me as well. But I guess one reason for the claim is, as you mentioned, that the legend of Simon Mann as ex senior manager of EO is still in circulation. It's been a while since I read your book and I might not remember every detail, but as far as I know, he was never ever part of EO's management, correct? I remember that you wrote in the chapter about the Soyo mission that he wanted to be the ops officer in charge and you didn't agree with it, to say the least.

I recently saw a documentary on You tube (links follow below, in which they claim again that Mann was a senior manager of EO. And so half informed or ideology driven journalists might just use the wrong sources. (willingly or not)

If you search the internet for EO you find the wrong facts again and again. E.g. Mann as manager of EO, AEGIS being the new EO, Tim Spicer as memeber of EO, EO operations after 1999, EO behind the Equatorial Guinea plot, etc, etc. I am not talking about old articles from the days, but recent publishing about the PMC business.

Even though it is very annoying, I doubt that it will ever stop.

Have a nice day, Greets from Dubai!
Joe

P.S.: Video about the Plot, with Simon Mann claiming he was EO:


Black Beach - Simon Mann's African Oil Coup

Teil 1
[url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d2Icz5uD10s&feature=related[/url]

Teil 2
[url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=neuKa1w1tXU&feature=related[/url]

Teil 3
[url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zGbA9TR1rdA&feature=related[/url]

Teil 4
[url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=khIW2Iz5rLY&feature=related[/url]

Teil 5
[url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HZ_9EL2mJrM&feature=related[/url]

Teil 6
[url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zjzQ_kDSwWg&feature=related[/url]

mandy said...

it seems you just cant shake these idiots and paprazzi who actually refer to themselves as journalists.
whenever they need a "scoop" they seem to drag EO into it. isnt it time they went after someone else?
mike.

Wayne said...

Mr. Barlow
I am always impressed of how no matter what lies or insults you get thrown at you, you always keep your good manners. That apart from your clear answers is an inspiration to us all. Or it should be.
Regards
Wayne

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

They obviously believe that they are above the law, Mike and are therefore allowed to publish whatever they want. However, to accuse EO of a very serious crime – that is what a coup is – I believe that they must provide their “evidence”.

It is a pity that those who have a responsibility to inform choose to rather misinform.

Rgds,

Eeben

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

Thanks for the compliment Wayne but when steam starts blowing out of my ears, my wife tells me to sit down and take a deep breath.

It is not easy to be accused of crimes and have to sit back and watch when a paper such as the NYT is spreading their lie across the world. But I was fortunately brought up to respect the truth and have manners.

Rgds,

Eeben

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

I hope all is well with you in Afghanistan, Joe.

NYT have as yet not responded to my letter. I hope they have the decency and manners to do so soon.

Part of the problem some of these so-called journalists face is that much of the disinformation on the internet originated with them in the first place. Now they simply need to regurgitate their own rubbish and believe they have saved the world. It is ironic that many of them would be without a job if we lived in paradise. Sadly, we are far from paradise and they appear to thrive on chaos – that gives them a job – and to think they are proud of making their living by not only lying but also by trying to stop those who want the wars and conflicts to end. I think they not only give dedicated journalists a bad name, they are also a disgrace to the human race.

Thanks for the links. I hope one day that Simon Mann will show the world proof of his role in creating EO - maybe he should also at that time pay the men he hoodwinked into working with him and that he undertook to pay but never did.

Take care and rgds,

Eeben

Robert said...

Eeben

Having found myself on the front page of the NYTimes and having the minor satisfaction of a full retraction after the fact, I share your enthusiasm for the truth. The conflation of EO and "coups" must be a Logo Logistics/SImon Mann/EG slip.

I have to say that article contains a lot of mean spirited assumption, use of unnamed sources a general sense of evil doing, when in fact there seems to be security training and capacity building at work in one of the more advanced arab nations. Since when did the UAE (and other oil rich nations) NOT seek skill sets off the top shelf?

Go for a retraction because you do have the NYTimes caught in a lie. I will send you the email for the writer.

RYP

Herbert said...

Mr Barlow,

Your experience with the NY Times is unfortunately indicative of what they have become. As I expect you know, the "Grey Lady" as it used to be respectfully known when it was held up as the paragon of good journalism has squandered its good reputation and has been hemorrhaging money and readers for a good while now. I used to subscribe--I no longer do.

They let their political bias lead them, fact checking is a laugh (one of their reporters a few years ago got caught actually making up stories), and they are very predictable.

They are so badly in debt that in 2009 they borrowed $250 million at 14% from a Mexican billionaire in order to stay afloat. Shows you how US banks felt about their future.

Good on you for standing on principle and truth.

Regards,
Herbert

Herbert said...

Mr. Barlow,

Please allow me a second posting regarding the New York Times mendacity. In my enthusiasm to point out NYT problems and shortcomings I overlooked the point that applies to you.

You may know that in the United States it is very difficult to get a libel finding against a media outlet if the the victim is deemed a public person. The definition of a public person is broad--you would probably be so deemed. That means that the onus shifts to the victim to show that the media outlet actually intended to commit libel, i.e., malice aforethought--very difficult to do.

Short of the court you might extract an apology of sorts (a victory for sure). And of course they might settle for some smaller amount to avoid larger legal fees. (Unlikely but another victory)

Having said that, I fully realize that money has no place in your thinking on this issue. Holding the media to a standard of truth is little to ask. It's hats off to you for your loyalty, principle, and honor in taking a stand.

Regards,
Herbert

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

I read that you got a retraction from them Robert but by then some damage had already been done to both your name and your reputation. Good for you!

In EO’s case, for NYT to actually falsely accuse EO of serious crime – that is what a coup is – would surely need some very powerful proof. Furthermore, regarding the article, it appears as though the 2 writers are incredibly envious of what Eric Prince has achieved.

I believe any government has the right to chose who they want to use to assist them with their own national security objectives. This is not something the media can or even ought to decide on. If UAE decided to use Eric Prince, that was their decision and good for him and his company. For people who seemingly have no apparent desire to see Eric giving that help, their loyalties are very clear.

Thanks for the email address. I shall wait to see what they do before taking this further.

Rgds,

Eeben

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

That is very interesting, Herbert. I found a few journalists in SA and beyond making up stories about EO – some even claiming that we were resorting to cannibalism! The problem is these stories made front page news and we had no recourse on the media.

For the NYT to need to loan funds to stay afloat to continue with their deception mission (a bit mercenary, don’t you think?) is rather telling.

What I also find telling is that NYT have as yet not responded to my letter. It just shows their arrogance and lack of integrity when it comes to righting a wrong. After all, falsely accusing a company of committing serious crimes (that is what coups are) is really criminal to say the least.

May they continue to experience a deserting readership.

Rgds,

Eeben

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

As you correctly assumed, this has nothing to do with money, Herbert. This had to do with accusing EO of committing serious crimes.

Despite the closing down of EO, which had nothing to do with SA govt legislation, I still have a responsibility towards the men who served the company with honour and who stopped criminals and insurgents from continuing their wave of destruction.

Rgds,

Eeben

matt said...

On a side note Eeben, I was curious about what you thought of the contract itself? The article had a link to a PDF of the contract that R2 signed with the UAE. Is it a good contract, or is it missing anything that you would have demanded to be in there. Here is a link:

http://graphics8.nytimes.com/packages/pdf/CONTRACT.pdf?ref=middleeast

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

I thought it was quite comprehensive Matt. I am sure that the legal teams from both sides would have scrutinised it very well before signature.

Did you find any grey areas?

Rgds,

Eeben

matt said...

I really liked the Interim Program Revue (IPR) process and the Performance Bond. The bond concept has always made sense to me. Basically, R2 has incentive to perform and there is a process to ensure that the UAE get's their money's worth.

I mentioned this on the blog, and I think it would be pretty funny if today's modern military forces actually had to deal with same kind of contract mechanisms. To actually produce results and win the war or lose money and the contract to be that nation's military. It kind of reminds me of how you talked about EO being cost effective and winning wars 'on time and under budget'. Government forces really don't have that kind of mindset, pretty much because there is no one to compete with and no one willing to challenge the status quo of war fighting and military force.

Which also brings to mind the ideas of Prince. He talked about the 'Fedex versus the Post Office' dynamic, and how private industry could do the same thing for today's military forces. The whole public/private competition thing, and a true 'private military company'.

Perhaps his vision for private force will materialize in the UAE? Who knows, but this is a very interesting chapter in this industry, and he definitely has everyone's attention.

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

Performance is what it all ought to be about Matt. Some PMCs sadly seem to regard performance as something that should never even be considered. As long as the clock ticks and the money comes in, all is accepted as okay.

No matter what people may think of Eric Prince, one must admit that he has carried on with his dreams despite massive attempts to stop him. The continued references to religion in articles re his latest contract are apparently only aimed at sowing distrust with his client. In actual fact, religion has nothing to do with this. I see it as a form of petty jealousy by those who do feel threatened and do not wish for the sun to shine on anyone. Ironically, some of those seem to pose as “journalists”. I also find it strange that these so-called journalists feel that they must be given a say in who a country may appoint to train their armed forces. That is a government decision and not a media one.

As you rightly point out, this is a very interesting chapter and it will be interesting to see where it leads to.

As a side note, the New York Times have not yet had the courtesy to even acknowledge receipt of my letter. It is interesting to see on my blog stats that there have been some searches for “Executive Outcomes coups”...I wonder if they are now trying to find something to back their lies?

Rgds,

Eeben

reflexivefire.com said...

I've been getting hits on my site for "executive outcomes coup" as well. The NYT article certainly roused some interest in EO's activities. I've also gotten hits for "thor global enterprises, tortola" which was also mentioned in the article. Does anyone have any information on Tor? I attempted some research on my own as well and failed to turn up anything substantial.

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

Very interesting Jack. It seems as though there are some out there trying to now find proof other than the “cut-and-paste jobs” they apparently thrive on.

I saw Matt had something of Thor on his site (feraljundi) – he might be able to shed more light on this.

Rgds,

Eeben

ateasemap said...

Do you know if there are plans to publish your book "EXECUTIVE OUTCOMES – AGAINST ALL ODDS" in Germany? And if so, which is the publishing company?

sir 47 said...

hello sir barlow
Sorry for my english im french i read your book and BloodSong(Jim Hooper)
i look for books on the CCB and the Barnacle project but impossible to find.Do you know books about the subject and Ivan the terrible Athol visser,not Devil Incarnate,i deja read.
Thanks
sir 47

John said...

Good Evening Eeben,

Interesting thread when I go further down into the contract that Matt referenced. I gravitated towards the "equipment" portions of the SOW. Looks to be tight enough to keep control of the contractor - control the equipment, control the job. Of course if the client gets desperate an unscrupulous contractor could hide any number of niceties within the equipment requests to set-up a little fiefdom (I know, I sound like I am believing the corrupt media story).

In regards to that do you feel that if the client is in control of the contractors equipment that the future of the PMC will be limited? Without an indigenous equipment source a company is always beholden to their host - which looks to be a very good control damper on any type of major coup activities. Of course I don't believe there is any lack of weaponry around so it all comes back to the men running the contractors business. Will they follow the EO model or will they mimic what the NYT thinks all PMC are?

Regards,

John

P.S. it is fascinating that there are multiple EO coup searches growing. Some may be allies though building cases in your support as various readers of your blog start spreading the word.

matt said...

Hey guys, I am pretty much in the dark on Thor or R2. So whatever is opensource right now, is all I know. I do know that I am getting a lot of readers coming out of the UAE, so if anyone at those companies wanted to make any statements, they are more than welcome to do so. I would have thought Prince would at least have made a public statement that would have corrected the record...seeing how the NYT's is in the game of publishing factually incorrect articles.

Alex said...

Hello Eeben,

It's amazing (or perhaps not) how much false and contradictory information there is on EO when you start digging around. I just finished a research paper on EO and trying to reconcile all the 'facts' from different sources to create a coherent picture of events is nigh on impossible.

I too have read accusations of EO's involvement in coups (specifically in Sierra Leone), both EO supposedly allowing them to occur, and conversely preventing them. However, while I did find these facts in academic works rather than newspapers the referencing for the evidence was either non-existent or, in one intriguing example, stated as 'Confidential interviews, Spring 2001'. Seems that someone at least has no problem telling researchers that EO was indeed involved in these sorts of activities. I don't know if that's where your NYT hacks got their 'info', but it could be.

I also found interesting but seemingly self-defeating references to EO having stakes in the diamond mines etc (those fun old claims that never seem to go away) and yet also being paid several months in arrears by the SL government, and going unpaid for one month (April 1996 if memory serves); all this in different works by the same academic. Why the company would go to war to secure resources upon which its payment was supposedly contingent and then not mind when it wasn't paid at all some of the time was never explained.

Good luck with the NYT, but in my experience with research people only seem to go to much trouble on their main topic, and when it comes to subsidiary topics, such as EO's mention in the article on Prince, they're happy to stick in any convenient information. Hence what began as disinformation or just a good story to sell papers becomes self-replicating 'fact'. Sad but true.

Hope you're keeping well (this whole affair aside).

Regards,

Alex

michael b said...

totally off topic. just wanted to compliment you on hitting the 70000 views on your counter. thats quite an achievement. hell, i am still in my first millennium with 1500 or so. then again your posts are meatier and less erratic than my mental masturbation. way to go! now the bar is set at 100k.
many thanks for a good quality level headed blog.
mike THE DA SILVA CODE

graycladunits said...

Dear Eeben:

Do you suspect that some of your former employees joined in the coup attempt in Equatorial Guinea? If you know for sure that some did, does knowing this disappoint you in any way? I am just curious and thought I would ask. I understand if you do not feel comfortable answering this question.

Sincerely, GCU

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

Thank you for your interest in the book but I do not think that my publisher plans to publish it in Germany, ateasemap.

If you are interested in getting a copy, I would suggest you contact the publisher directly at http://www.galago.co.za/orders.htm

Rgds,

Eeben

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

There is no need to apologise sir 47. If I had to write in French, it would be a complete disaster so I admire your determination. Besides, unlike my French, I can understand your English.

You will find a lot of books on
http://www.galago.co.za/ and http://www.30degreessouth.co.za/. Not much has been written on the CCB – I started writing one but abandoned it for fear of compromising agents who worked for me. Some books give some information on the CCB but there is also a lot of speculation.

Rgds,

Eeben

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

It is all about control, John. Equipment is very costly and as the client purchases it, it should be controlled by him. This will not limit the future of the PMC but rather make it easier in terms of equipment control. It also gives less ammunition to those in the media who use their writing as an outlet for their conspiracy theories whilst desperately trying to champion the human rights of rebels, thugs and murderers.

I believe that the PMC is there to fulfil a contract given it by the host government. They remain accountable to that government. If they fail, the prerogative to get rid of them lies with the host government.

I note that the NYT story – along with my letter – has spread far and wide and I have had many emails supporting my actions. As you know, they did publish an apology but failed to apologise for accusing EO of very serious crimes.

Rgds,

Eeben

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

I must confess that5 I don’t follow too many companies in terms of their work or backgrounds, Matt. Thus, I too am in the dark on Thor and R2. I hope someone associated with them reads your willingness to put their side of the story out there.

Most timers it is better to ignore the media’s stories – except of course if they accuse you of committing crimes. I would replace your very diplomatic terms “factually incorrect” with “downright lies”.

Rgds,

Eeben

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

It is amazing Alex. Of course, these so-called researchers hide their lies with references such as “confidential interviews” or “classified sources” – this gives them free rein to lie as much as they want. But, the start of this all began with SA’s Mil Int clowns and then to the UN who saw EO as a massive threat to their money-making schemes in Africa. Also, the UN had fairly cosy relationship with the rebels in Angola and SL, so their reaction was not unexpected. One need only look at the performance of the UN in Africa and realise that a peaceful Africa does not suit their financial purposes.

Of course, claims that EO had been paid in resources made for much more interesting reading than the facts. I will gladly give anyone who can deliver such proof 90% of the mine(s) that was given to me – I will only keep 10% of it and share it with the ex-EO men. I am sure this ought to motivate them to find the proof they so easily lie about.

As for the NYT, they did publish a correction but it has not satisfied me at all. Given that we apparently committed crimes (that’s what coups are) I want more than just a simple correction from them.

I am always well thank you.

Rgds,

Eeben

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

Many thanks Mike. Your good wishes are much appreciated.

I am sure that your blog will soon explode and surpass mine.

Rgds,

Eeben

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

Yes, some did partake in it, GCU. In fact, I was contacted by several ex-EO men who were told that it was an “EO mission” and they wanted confirmation thereof. When I told them that it was definitely not EO and warned them of the consequences, they never accepted the offer to join. Others who did take part have told me how they were lied to and some never even paid.

Was I disappointed in their actions for taking part? Yes, I was disappointed but also sorry for them as I knew they had been lied to. EO became the scapegoat of the media, despite the fact that there were men involved from other companies as well – and EO had long ceased to exist.

Rgds,

Eeben

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

There were many forces behind the Ivory Coast regime change Private but I am sure we will not know the real facts for a long time to come.

I am not really the master of my own diary as I do a lot of travelling and work. I sometimes think that I will be around for a few days and all that changes rather suddenly when a government calls me and I have to go. Nothing to do with “chilling” at all – simply work.

As you may have seen, the NYT did a “correction”.

Rgds,

Eeben

mike da silva said...

thanks for the vote in confidence, however my blog is just ramblings and silly inane crap that fumbles around in my head. you have become the voice of reason in this crazy pmc world. every "dude" and his dog believes themselves to be decendant of rambo. the reality of it all is a tad different. the fact that the press constantly badger you is testament to the fact that there are idiots out there mouthing off and "writing cheques" with their mouths and signing them with your signature. i suppose you have learned to ignore most of them but i am sure there are the few who are supposedly associated with "serious" news papers that must rile you and get your blood boiling? NYT maybe?
i am buying your book and would be super stoked if you would perhaps sign it for me? could i be so bold as to request you sign my copy?
mike.

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

All blogs include an amount of ramblings, Mike. After all, we use our blogs as our soapboxes, so don’t despair.

You will be surprised at how many times I am contacted by governments asking if I am associated with so-and-so PMC.

I would be honoured to sign your book.

Rgds,

Eeben

mike da silva said...

are you still in contact with simon mann in any way? i met simon mann once in cabo ledo, he was there to meet with pine pienaar and the brig. we were taking him back to the airfield to fly back to south africa?. he sat on the back of the chevy cheyenne and scoffed in a condescending manner that we were the only "mercs" with a padre.(quote unquote), i felt he disapproved of the fact that a chapelain was there. i am not a fantastically religious person but i felt ok with the presence of a "minister". to me it showed that the company were really worried or at least concerned about the guys "spiritual" side and it showed that we had structure and werent just a bunch of thugs. i felt that was what seperated us from others. this has been bugging me for years. i never forgot the tone in which he said it. we arrived at the flight line, i went about refuelling the king air and was glad to see it leave.
mike EO`s airwing petrol jockey.

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

I last saw him in 1997, Mike and have no desire to see him again. I suspect the feeling is mutual.

However, he did tend to look down on us from South Africa and imagined he was far smarter than anyone of us could ever hope to be. But, to each their own. You can put those bugs to bed now as he is not worth the worry. Besides, I think he may be sleeping with one eye open as there are many who want to have a quiet word with him after he left them in the lurch.

The padre was there because the men asked for him. No one asked his opinion.

Rgds,

Eeben