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Are Private Military Companies Operating in Ukraine?

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On March 9th 202, BBC published an article titled; “Private military firms see demand in Ukraine war” following a job advert for “Extractive/ Protective Agents” circulating on social media. The job ad initially posted on a security industry job site called Silent Professionals offered a daily wage of $1000-2000 + bonuses for successful candidates, with application prerequisites being a minimum of a few years of military service, amongst other things. 

Though somewhat misleading in its title, the article is worth a read for anyone interested in the subject; however, let’s explore the subject subject of western “private military companies” in the post Executive Outcomes/ Sandline/ Blackwater era. THIS SHALL BE A TWO PART POST.

Executive Outcomes (EO) and Sandline International (SI) are two well known private military companies (PMCs) that operated in the 1990s. Though based out of South Africa, EO was owned and run by two former UK Special Forces operatives, one of whom was Simon Mann, who ended up spending 5yrs at Mugabe’s leisure in Zimbabwe’s Chikurubi Maximum Security after a botched coup attempt … not in Zimbabwe but New Guinea (an interesting story worth your research) EO was famed for its “offensive” approach (i.e. taking the fight to the “bad guys”) on behalf of the governments in Angola & Sierra Leone. SI also took the “offensive” approach as EO, operated around the same time, was based in London and operated in Papua New Guinea, Liberia & Sierra Leone. Blackwater (BW) came on the scene due to 9/11, years after the collapse of both EO & SI. BW, an American PMC and the last of its kind in the West, lead the private sector offensive in Afghan and Iraq. 

The common denominators between EO, SI & BW are (1) just how much money their owners made; amounts in the hundreds of millions, (2) their controversial approach and (3) their violations, (4) their downfall and dissolution.

[End of Part One]

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