Executive Outcomes (EO) has again come under attack despite the fact that the company’s doors have been closed for more than a decade and a half. The premise is the more you repeat a lie, despite it being easily disproved, the more people will want to believe it. This principle of successful disinformation is particularly true when it comes to Africa – and EO.
A piece recently written by Assistant Professor Chris Blattman (Columbia University, USA) stated that “Whatever acts EO have on the positive side of their ledger (there are several), there are a great many dodgy ones to balance it out. I might also mention they were outlawed and disbanded…” ( http://chrisblattman.com/2013/10/30/is-the-newyorker-publishing-puff-profiles-of-mercenaries-executive-outcomes-now-its-joseph-kony-related/)
Although Blattman gives EO some credit, he refers to a “great many dodgy” things EO did and also that the company was “outlawed” and “disbanded”. Why doesn’t he list these “great many” dodgy acts? And why does he not say when EO was “outlawed” – and by whom and for what reason? As for being “disbanded”, his inference is very clear. Sadly, he appears to have lost himself in his own plot as in two sentences, he lied three times – a disgraceful act for a so-called intellectual. Unless, of course, he knows something we don’t…
Neither EO - nor later STTEP - ever engaged in any criminal activities nor smuggled drugs to embassy personnel anywhere, sexually assaulted foreign nationals where we worked, simultaneously supported governments and those who oppose them, interfered in the internal politics of African governments, killed innocent civilians under the guise of “collateral damage” and invaded countries, to list but a few. We were invited by governments to assist them and those men of EO who broke the host government’s laws were swiftly dealt with when such knowledge came to our attention.
In terms of “dodgy acts” – this inference and innuendo was started by the old SA Military Intelligence and certain old-SA government officials and their advisors in an attempt to discredit EO whilst saving the rebel forces they were supporting. This was fed to and propagated by numerous now-exposed and discredited journalists who were working under control as agents and propagandists - and was later grasped by all who wanted EO stopped lest we expose their multiple agendas, duplicity and criminality.
If being contracted by legitimate African governments falls within the ambit of “dodgy acts” then EO must plead guilty and so too STTEP. If we ended the conflicts and wars decisively and as swiftly as possible then we are guilty of that too. If we saved thousands of innocent African lives and stabilised legitimate African governments whilst destroying or disrupting criminal, rebel and proxy forces then we are definitely guilty. However, does that make the African (and other) governments that contracted us equally complicit in these “dodgy” deeds?
Truth is, EO was never “outlawed” as the professor falsely claims. But we know the US DoS placed – and still places - enormous pressure on African governments not to speak to us as they remain very concerned that we might upset their agendas in Africa. Even African governments have now acknowledged this deception with some dismay – a deception that is aimed at ensuring that these conflicts simply continue.
Nevertheless, if Blattman has any proof of what he alleges to be true, why not list it? Why keep his readers in such suspense? If his intentions are honourable, why the concern about a company that no longer exists? And why purposely lie about it? Even more pertinent, why hide his deception behind the façade of being both intellectually concerned and principled?
Strangely enough, Blattman did not mention that EO warned Uganda in 1996 that the LRA would rise again – something western governments scoffed at. But, I forget, he studied this for six years – our lifetime on the continent has no measure against his studies. What did the six years of his study of Kony achieve and at what cost?
However, if the purpose is to mislead students, citizens and governments and discredit people and companies with false accusations, one must resort to innuendo and create false and misleading perceptions to appease your paymasters – especially if part of your covert aim is to discredit a defunct company. To work at achieving this aim, you need to exploit those journalists and their handlers who were and are too lazy to do research and intelligence gathering as they will believe and publish whatever rubbish is fed them.
Anyone who can expose this agenda must be discredited as rapidly as possible lest the truth be revealed. They must become “persons of interest” and be "blacklisted” to add credibility to the deception.
It is apparent that the truth about EO and STTEP must be prevented from becoming known at all costs. Apparently, deception and lies must prevail.
Ultimately though, it is about creating “bogeymen” and then acting according to the so-called Global War on Terror to neutralise these bogeymen – often creations of their own making and sponsorship.
I am truly grateful that I was never under the tutelage of Assistant Professor Blattman, a man who appears to have little to no clue on a subject he apparently considers himself to be quite knowledgeable on. Perhaps he would care to enlighten me on his “facts” and sources.
I look forward to his exposé on EO.
Note: I have emailed this posting directly to Assistant Professor Blattman and will publish his responses when I receive them.