'Controversial founder and ex-CEO of the private security firm Blackwater, Erik Prince told Fox Business this week that private military contractors could replace the U.S. troops that are withdrawing from Syria.
Following a similar failed proposal Prince reportedly made through White House channels in 2017 to privatize the fight against the Taliban in Afghanistan — which some contractor industry analysts have suggested Trump was "sympathetic" to — it appeared Prince was attempting to pitch both Washington and the American public in the Fox interview on the "alternate" plan. “The United States doesn’t have a long-term strategic obligation to stay in Syria. But, I also think it’s not a good idea to abandon our allies,” he told Fox Business.
Prince offered the plan as a solution to the administration's current stated dilemma of withdrawing troops in such a way that both protects the US-backed Kurdish SDF and prevents Iran from becoming more entrenched in the region. This way, according to Prince, private contractors could fill the void while allowing Trump to stand behind his repeat promises to end "forever wars".
“American history is filled with public and private partnerships, of places that the private sector can fill those gaps, where a very expensive military probably shouldn’t be,” Prince said. “If there is not some kind of robust capability to defend from a ground invasions from the very conventional power that the Iranians and the Syrians have, our allies will be smashed,” he continued.'
Read more: Blackwater Founder Says US Troops In Syria Could Be Replaced By Private Contractors
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