19 December 2007

Blackwater shoots NY Times Dog... Wait, what?!

Blackwater, the cavalier, we-answer-to-no-one security firm/mercenary army/Gung-ho cowboys you know and love, has been involved in yet another shocking display of intrepid gunplay in Iraq.

Just months after brass Blackwater guards shot 17 civilians in cold blood on the streets of Baghdad, they shot The Times' dog. The what? The Times' what?

Wait, The New York Times has "a dog"? Like a mascot? And, uh, Blackwater shot it?! What the FUCK are you talking about?!

From Reuters, with Love:

“The U.S. embassy in Iraq is investigating another deadly shooting incident involving its Blackwater bodyguards - this time of the New York Times's dog.

Staff at the newspaper's Baghdad bureau said Blackwater bodyguards shot Hentish dead last week before a visit by a U.S. diplomat to the Times compound.

Blackwater spokeswoman Anne Tyrrell said the dog had attacked one of Blackwater's bomb-sniffer dogs while a security team was sweeping the compound for explosives.

"The K-9 handler made several unsuccessful attempts to get the dog to retreat, including placing himself between the dogs. When those efforts failed, the K-9 handler unfortunately was forced to use a pistol to protect the company's K-9 and himself," she said in an e-mail to Reuters.

The U.S. embassy employs about 1,000 armed Blackwater staff to protect American diplomats in Baghdad.

State Department investigators have made two follow-up visits to the Times compound to investigate the shooting of Hentish, correspondent Alissa Rubin said.

"They were very solicitous and I thought took the incident very seriously," Rubin said. "It's not a dog that everyone's close to in the compound. But it's a dog that's been around a long time. It lived its whole life there." ”

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