Contractors be­hav­ing badly mean headaches for United States

The Pak Banker - - International3 -

WASHINGTON: At two in the morn­ing on Sept. 9, 2005, five DynCorp In­ter­na­tional se­cu­rity guards as­signed to Afghan Pres­i­dent Hamid Karzai's pro­tec­tive de­tail re­turned to their com­pound drunk, with a pros­ti­tute in tow. Less than a week later, three of these same guards got drunk again, this time in the VIP lounge of the Kabul air­port while await­ing a flight to Thai­land.

"They had been in­tox­i­cated, loud and ob­nox­ious," ac­cord­ing to an in­ter­nal com­pany re­port of the in­ci­dent, which noted that Afghanistan's deputy di­rec­tor for elec­tions and a for­eign diplo­mat were also in the lounge. "Com­plaints were made re­gard­ing the sit­u­a­tion." DynCorp fired the three guards.

Such episodes rep­re­sent the headaches that U.S. contractors can cause in Afghanistan, Iraq and else­where. They are in­dis­pens­able to the State Depart­ment's mis­sion over­seas, han­dling se­cu­rity, trans­porta­tion, con­struc­tion, food ser­vice and more. But when hired hands be­have badly - or break the law - they cast a cloud over the Amer­i­can pres­ence.

Doc­u­ments ob­tained by The As­so­ci­ated Press un­der the Free­dom of In­for­ma­tion Act de­scribe pre­vi­ously undis­closed of­fenses com­mit­ted by more than 200 con­tract em­ploy­ees in Afghanistan, Iraq and other coun­tries be­tween 2004 and 2008. They were work­ing un­der a broad State Depart­ment se­cu­rity ser­vices con­tract shared by DynCorp of Falls Church, Va.; Triple Canopy of Re­ston, Va.; and the com­pany for­merly known as Black­wa­ter World­wide - Xe Ser­vices of Moy­ock, N.C.

Most of the in­frac­tions, which in­clude ex­ces­sive drink­ing, drug use, sex­ual mis­con­duct and mis­han­dling weapons, were vi­o­la­tions of cor­po­rate and U.S. poli­cies that prob­a­bly went un­no­ticed by or­di­nary Afghans and Iraqis. -Ap

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