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General News    H3'ed 4/25/13

Hired guns at the Marathon: Why Such Secrecy about Private Military Contractor's Men Working the Event?

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(Article changed on April 25, 2013 at 16:04)

(Article changed on April 25, 2013 at 15:47)

(Article changed on April 25, 2013 at 15:44)

(Article changed on April 25, 2013 at 15:42)

By Dave Lindorff

Seven Craft Intl. mercenaries near a communications van post-bombing
Seven Craft Intl. mercenaries near a communications van post-bombing
(Image by ThisCantBeHappening))
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Speaking as an investigative reporter with almost 40 years's experience, I can say that when government officials won't talk, they're generally hiding something embarrassing or worse.


And nobody will talk about those Craft International Services private security personnel who were widely observed and photographed near the finish line of the Boston Marathon, wearing security ear-pieces, hats and T-shirts bearing the company's skull logo, and all wearing the same dark coats, khaki pants and combat boots, some carrying what appear to have been radiation detectors.


I first contacted a man identifying himself as Jack Fleming, a public affairs person with the Boston Athletic Assn., sponsor of the marathon. Fleming advised me that "If you want to ask about that you should contact the Commonwealth (of Massachusetts) Executive Office of Public Safety."


I called that agency and spoke with the public information office there, a man named Terrell Fleming. He first said, "Did you call the Marathon organizers?" When I replied that I had, and that they had said to call his office, he replied, "They did?" Then he said, "You should call the City of Boston Police Department. They released a security plan to some media organizations."  


Indeed they had released that plan to the  Boston Globe . Based upon the information it got from the police  the article the Globe ran , did report that the Police had deployed "air patrols, K9 units, and more than 1,000 uniformed officers and soldiers along the 26-mile course and the finish line," but it made no mention of the private contracting of soldiers-for-hire, which is what Craft International does (see the  Craft website ).  News agency Reuters  reported, meanwhile, that a top official for the Massachusetts state Homeland Security Department, Undersecretary Kurt Schwartz, told a group at Harvard U. that his agency had "planned" for a possible bombing attack on the marathon, even running a "table-top" exercise about such an event a week before the race.


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Dave Lindorff, winner of a 2019 "Izzy" Award for Outstanding Independent Journalism from the Park Center for Independent Media in Ithaca, is a founding member of the collectively-owned, journalist-run online newspaper (more...)
 

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