State Dept. Outsourcing $10 Billion Air War against Drugs
The State Department has quietly been operating its own air war on drugs, and plans to spend upwards of $10 billion on counternarcotics operations with the help of security contractors.
In a notice to industry, the State Department recently solicited bids from companies to help the agency operate its fleet of more than 400 aircraft.
Among the duties that a contractor will have to perform are providing pilots and support “for drug interdiction missions such as crop spraying, and the transport of personnel and cargo,” according to the State Department’s announcement.
The work will be managed from Patrick Air Force Base in Florida, out of which the State Department conducts its anti-drug air war. Many of the helicopters and planes operate in foreign countries that export illegal narcotics, including Colombia, Bolivia, Peru, Pakistan, and Guatemala.
To date the State Department’s outsourcing has been fulfilled by DynCorp, one of the nation’s largest security contractors. A company spokesman would not reveal to Wired whether DynCorp planned to bid for the $10 billion deal.
To Learn More:
U.S. Ready to Offer Mercenaries $10 Billion for a Drug-War Air Force (by Spencer Ackerman, Wired)
Billions More Wasted on Anti-Drug Contracts in Latin America (by Noel Brinkerhoff and David Wallechinsky, AllGov)
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