Sunday, March 09, 2008

One Small Victory

[click banner]

I've revived the following report from last October since today there has been one small victory over the onslaught of Blackwater within our country.

In this report yesterday from Think Progress we find that the town of Potrereo, California has fought back against Blackwater and stopped the proposed construction of a Blackwater training camp in their community.
Military contractor Blackwater Worldwide has pulled plans to build a training facility near San Diego, CA, facing intense opposition by local activists. In December, “voters recalled five members of a local planning board who supported the project.” The proposal for “Blackwater West” included “11 firing ranges, a driving track and a helipad in a valley tucked into rocky desert mountains.”

When the city planning board voted in favor of the camp last year the community call for a recall election of those voting in favor of the camp. In that election those favoring the facility were soundly defeated as reported here at Crooks and Liars:
A tiny town called Potrero just north of the border in California, an area ravaged by the recent wildfires, just stood up and resoundingly said no to another impending disaster: Blackwater moving to town. It was the nation’s first ever electoral vote on Blackwater and it was a massive people-powered grassroots victory over the mercenaries. Every “stop Blackwater” candidate won by at least 63% (results here). It was an an enormous statement to Blackwater: stay out, you are not the kind of neighbors we want in our community. It is also a blistering statement by a very conservative town to reject the Bush world view. Our nation is not better served by having a privatized Army and there is nothing pro-troop about supporting Blackwater.

C&L also tells us of Blackwater's struggle to get the camp placed there:
Blackwater has been working this little town of 509 registered voters (which went for Bush over Kerry by 25.8%) hard. They deployed Brian Bonfiglio, a Vice-President at Blackwater out to San Diego County to regularly show up to town meetings in Potrero. They sent out propaganda mailers and generally tried to ingratiate themselves with residents of the community. In short, Blackwater has invested a great deal of resources into P.R. within Potrero and cares very much what the residents feel about the company. Naturally, Bonfiglio and Blackwater are trying to downplay this huge loss, even trying to claim that they couldn’t give a crap about the town.

Meet Carl Meyer, a farmer and life long Potrero resident who helped lead the “Save Potrero” slate. In the recall election he won 71.4% of the vote thus replacing Gordon Hammers, the chair of the Planning Group and most ardent supporter of the camp.

Following is the original report on Blackwater from last October:

Blackwater, one of the US mercenary private security forces in Iraq, is working beyond the law and immune from any responsibility or legal ramifications for its acts.

What is Blackwater?

When did this start?

Jeremy Scahill, author of Blackwater - The Rise of the World's Most Powerful Mercenary Army and National Institute Fellow, speaks about Blackwater and their lack of accountability.

Here Jeremy discusses Blackwater and the shadow armies we employ.

Blackwater employees caught smuggling weapons into Iraq.

Blackwater attacking innocent civilians.

In this video Bill Moyers interviews Jeremy Scahill regarding the use of Blackwater within the United States.

Potrereo California - Site of a new Blackwater mega training camp?
(It's all about the money!)

Congress gives Erik Prince the military's negative view of their work.

Bush, of course ducks and darts, thinking this situation is quite humorous. (It's how he works.)

No comments:

Post a Comment