Anh Security Chất Nhất Quả Đất

"There are a lot of assumptions about contractors, và a lot of the assumptions are wrong." Those are the words of a private contractor who asked to lớn be referred to lớn only as "Lloyd" for this story, because like most of his colleagues he is not authorized lớn speak lớn the media.

By Lloyd's count, he has spent some 1,000 days working in Afghanistan in the past four years. He, lượt thích many other well-trained military men, decided to lớn leave his position as a Navy SEAL & take his chances finding employment in one of the hot spots around the world where highly skilled contractors were well-paid, & in demand.

Bạn đang xem: Anh security chất nhất quả đất

Very few people outside the contracting industry really understood just what a private contractor did before March 31, 2004. That was the day four American contractors accompanying a shipment of kitchen equipment through Iraq were ambushed, killed, set on fire, dragged through the streets, & hung from a bridge before a cheering crowd in the thành phố of Fallujah.

As shock subsided, questions arose. Who were these American men? If they weren't members of the military, what were they doing in one of the most volatile regions of Iraq?

All four men were private contractors working for a company called Blackwater. At the time the company, lượt thích many others, was just getting on its feet as U.S. Demand for services skyrocketed. The government needed armed, well-trained personnel in hostile territories. The new push started when the United States went to war in a CIA-led operation in Afghanistan in 2001. E CIA's early advance teams were not fully prepared for the pace of their own success. They quickly needed makeshift facilities lớn hold hostile enemy combatants và establish secure operating bases. The military wasn't yet in a position khổng lồ help, so the CIA hired Blackwater.

It was a similar story when the U.S. Invaded Iraq in 2003. A heavy presence of diplomats & reconstruction experts working in a hostile area meant they needed lớn be protected. Blackwater won a part of the contract to lớn provide services in the country. But being a private contractor was a shady business, if not in the "legal" sense, in the "keeping off the radar" sense. Many of the contracts that were granted khổng lồ companies such as Blackwater included clauses that severely limited the companies' ability to talk lớn members of the media. Contracting was, by the design of the U.S. Government, secretive.


It was also designed to be nothing more than a cost-saving, stopgap measure. But as U.S. Troops leave Iraq, there is an army of contractors staying behind, và 5,000 of them will be providing services.

A contractor's experiences often don't draw a great khuyến mãi of attention, unless someone is kidnapped, or has done something wrong. As Congress began lớn investigate the government's use of contractors several years ago, the issues that drew the most attention were the lack of clear rules governing contractors, & just how much money they were being paid. While it's true that money has always been a big draw, there are other parts of the job & lifestyle that rarely get reported.

"I remember when I got out of the military & took my first job with Blackwater," says Lloyd, "I thought I was going lớn be a millionaire, but after working five years in contracting, I can tell you I was chasing a carrot the whole time."

At the height of the boom in the years following the start of the Iraq war, private contractors with military or law enforcement experience could make upwards of $750 a day. They would work for several months at a time & then come home before heading off on the next assignment. Many of the jobs didn't come with life insurance policies or medical coverage for their families back home.

Xem thêm: Anh Đẹp Trai Còn Em Thì Đẹp Gái, Lời Bài Hát Em Chưa 18

"Layoffs và breaks between deployments have all affected my financial progress," says Lloyd. "It's two steps forward and one step back." He has a wife back trang chủ who is awaiting the birth of the couple's first child and says he worries because he has no pension. He reports that he has $30,000 in a 401(k) & another $15,000 in A Roth IRA. It's nowhere near the million he thought he would earn.

Another contractor, who worked for two of the larger private companies before finding an office job back home, says it was a sense of duty after 9/11 that prompted him lớn leave his job as a SWAT team officer và go overseas. But the money wasn't bad, either.

"I got in so early that when I got into it the money was good," says Carter, who doesn't want to lớn use his real name out of fear that he will have trouble getting hired for another contract if anyone knows he's spoken with CNN. "We were making $700 – $750 a day regardless of the contract. Some paid higher, some paid lower, but over time the company started paying less. They diluted the pool of skills. They lowered the qualifications 'cause they needed people. Six hundred dollars a day - pay dramatically dropped, then new companies came in - $500 day và it went from there."

Was it worth the money? "I had spent five months not eating, not sleeping, because you'd have death missions, seeing people get blown up all around me, going on dangerous missions where I could have died," says Carter. "I had so many close calls when we should have been killed, dozens of times. Small arms fire, some RPGs (rocket-propelled grenades), some grenade attacks on the vehicles. It didn't happen daily, but it was dangerous."

"I have even had people tell me that I'm not like they are, because I'm a contractor," said Lloyd. "As if a rocket attack isn't just as stressful for me as it is for them, because I make "so much money."" As if (post-traumatic stress disorder) is only for soldiers và combat veterans, because I make so much money that I have nothing khổng lồ be stressed about."

lượt thích many private contractors working in Iraq and Afghanistan, Carter moved between contracts, sometimes working on CIA tasks & sometimes on DEA contracts. For a while, he provided base at one of the most sensitive CIA bases in the region. On other contracts, he often had to accompany reconstruction officials to meetings with Iraqi counterparts.

Carter recalls one night where he believed that there was a good chance that he wouldn't go home to his wife again.

"Here I am sweating bullets because I know the next day I have to lớn take someone lớn a dangerous neighborhood, and it's me và another guy protecting someone and I'm scared khổng lồ death."

"I had no benefits, no veterans services, no college fund, no disability insurance. There were some limited benefits from the company, but we got no veteran's credit. That was a big downside. We were getting murdered on medical insurance. Couldn't get any life insurance back then," recalls Carter.

There were contractors in the early days who saved up money, put their kids through college, or paid off the mortgage, và came home. It wasn't the kind of job that many people took on thinking they could vị it for 10 years. But there was another big drawback once they were home: finding a job to lớn match their skill mix wasn't easy.

"I didn't bring home one skill I could use," says Carter, who has been trang chủ for three years now but is thinking seriously about going back.

"I still stay in cảm ứng with all of my friends who are deployed. Every day they are a part of something that matters. Every day, I sit behind a desk & do nothing. I used to lớn be working along the border between Pakistan & Afghanistan doing operations that the military wouldn't bởi vì - và now I come trang chủ and I have lớn answer khổng lồ some boob about what I'm doing. It's such an emotional and mental letdown. I'm literally rotting," says Carter.

But if he went back now, depending on where he went, there could be even more dangers. The U.S. Is still negotiating with the Iraqi government about whether U.S. Contractors will be granted any diplomatic protections under Iraqi law. It's been a point of contention since Blackwater guards shot & killed 17 Iraqis in a Baghdad traffic circle in 2007. Given the unwelcoming position of the Iraqi government toward U.S. Contractors in light of that shooting, it's another risk worth weighing before packing the duffel bag.