Government officials said the shooting occurred when security guards fired in response to gunfire by other members of their unit in the mistaken belief that they were under attack. One official said, "I wouldn't call it a massacre, but to say it was unwarranted is an understatement."
I wonder what you would call it, then? F.B.I. Says Guards Killed 14 Iraqis Without Cause' in Nisour square on September 16.
That is the tragic part of the tragic comic opera of Blackwater. The comic part was today in another massacre of sorts on Capitol Hill.
At the beginning of today's House oversight committee hearing on State Department Inspector General Howard "Cookie" Krongard, Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA) dropped a bombshell: Krongard's brother, former CIA Executive Director A.B. "Buzzy" Krongard, sits on Blackwater's advisory board. Blackwater, of course, is a State Department contractor.
Krongard at first denied it. He called it 'an ugly rumor' Watch it
I can tell you very frankly, I am not aware of any financial interest or position he has with respect to Blackwater. It couldn't possibly have affected anything I've done, because I don't believe it. And when these 'ugly rumors' started recently, I specifically asked him. I do not believe it is true that he is a member of the advisory board, as you stated, and that is something I think I need to say.
"During a break in today's hearing, Krongard called his brother and confirmed that the "ugly rumor" was in fact true, and promised to recuse himself from any Blackwater investigations".
That shouldn't be too much of a problem since he was accused by Waxman in a Committee September 18 letter of "halting investigations, censoring reports and refusing to cooperate with law enforcement agencies," concerning Blackwater, the new American embassy in Baghdad, and many other issues connected with his office "a dysfunctional office environment in which you routinely belitte and berate office personnel".
If it wasn't for Waxman and his oversight committee, Krongard wouldn't even have known that his only brother sits on Blackwater's advisory board... if we can believe him? It turns out that his brother has probably been on that board since July and the board met again earlier today.
With Blackwater and their overseerers, it is hard to know whether to laugh or cry. To cry certainly in Iraq is the appropriate response, but I don't know if laughter is the best response inside the beltway, but Krongard was all smiles, at the end of the hearing, when he received a personal guest invitation to a White House Christmas party, and a chance to have his picture taken with the President, as a reward for his 'service'.
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