December 10, 2008 |
The traffic circle hums on a cool and sunny afternoon, as motorists round the center median with its fake orange palm tree that sparkles at night, blooming flower beds and chunky sculpture. On such a calm day in Baghdad, it is hard to imagine the carnage that erupted here in Nisoor Square in September 2007, when Blackwater Worldwide security guards killed at least 17 Iraqis in a hail of machine-gun bullets and grenades, but the evidence remains.
February 10, 2010 |
Iraq has given hundreds of guards linked to the private security company formerly known as Blackwater a week to leave the country or face arrest, Interior Ministry officials said Wednesday. The order follows the dismissal in December by a U.S. federal judge of murder charges against five Blackwater guards accused of killing Iraqi civilians in a 2007 shooting incident on Baghdad's Nisoor Square. The Iraqi government said that 17 people died in the shooting, in which Blackwater guards opened fire on the busy square after they said they had come under attack, though an FBI investigation found only 14 deaths.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 2, 2009 |
A fourth lawsuit has been filed in federal court against the former Blackwater Worldwide security firm on behalf of family members of Iraqis allegedly killed by Blackwater guards. The lawsuit alleges that three Blackwater guards on a rooftop killed three guards for the Iraqi Media Network and that 20 other Blackwater employees refused to cooperate with Iraqi officials investigating the Feb. 7, 2007, shooting. North Carolina-based Blackwater has changed its name to Xe. The lawsuit was filed in San Diego because Xe operates two training facilities there, lawyers said.
December 12, 2008
Re "Guards defied orders, U.S. says," Dec. 9 The defense attorneys for the Blackwater guards accused of killing unarmed civilians in Baghdad contend that the Justice Department does not have the proper jurisdiction to try them. They're probably right. The five men should be sent back to Iraq, where the incident took place, to be tried. I'm sure they'll be able to get the fair trial they want and deserve there. Tom Ogden Hollywood
October 2, 2007 |
washington -- Blackwater USA, the private security contractor under scrutiny for its role in a deadly Baghdad shootout last month, has fired 122 of its armed guards in Iraq since it started protecting U.S. diplomats there three years ago, congressional investigators said Monday. The firings, most frequently for weapons-related incidents, amount to about 15% of Blackwater's current workforce in Iraq.
October 8, 2007 |
The young biology student pulled his car to the side of the busy traffic circle when he saw a fast-moving line of SUVs approaching from behind. As they flew past, he recalls, the lead vehicle appeared to intentionally smash into his sedan. But the worst was yet to come. As the convoy sped off, a gunner inside the last sport utility vehicle sprayed the traffic circle with bullets. Pedestrians ran for cover.