Barnes Law Firm, LTD. LLP - Where the Old West Meets the New Frontier
Call for FREE consultation
Phone 713-652-4002
Available 24/7 Se Habla EspaƱol
Serving clients in Texas and nationwide
Practice Areas

A U.S. military tradition: private security contractors

The American public might wish that U.S. involvement in Iraq was over, but the reality is that we have been returning troops to that war-torn nation since 2014. Early last year, we had sent 3,000 troops to Iraq with about an equal number of civilian contractors

The contractors essentially run the bases used by U.S. personnel, according to a recent report. Most are in services and supplies, while some are private security contractors (PSC). 

Back when the U.S. invaded Iraq and Afghanistan, wide use was made of security contractors. The high point in PSC deployment was in 2009, when there were more than 15,000 at work in those two volatile nations.

By 2013, U.S. troops had been nearly entirely brought back from Iraq. A contingent of more than PSC remained, however, assigned to embassy personnel protection. A similarly sized contingent of non-combat PSC remained as well.

Other than criticism, the presence of PSC gets little media attention, a recent article states. Even less attention was paid to the fact that militaries around the world have made use of private contractors for centuries. They are not a new invention or PR device, the article in a publication called Professional Overseas Contractors states.

In fact, it is pointed out that in the Viet Nam war, contractors represented about 16 percent of the entire force. Prior to that, more than one quarter of all personnel in the Korean War were civilians.

Other conflicts in which civilian contractors were a significant portion of the entire force included the U.S. Civil War (17 percent), World War II (12 percent) and the Revolutionary War (18 percent).

The figures make it clear that civilians are important to our military efforts. Unfortunately, civilians sustain casualties, too: injuries in their work and injuries caused by enemy fire.

Contractor injuries can be covered by what are essentially workers' compensation benefits under the Defense Base Act.

If you have any questions about the Defense Base Act and how this can affect you or a loved one, please contact the Barnes Law Firm at 713-652-4002 for a confidential consultation.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information