Blackwater Tried to Out-Pirate the Somali Pirates

Unaccountable mercenary firm Blackwater had a big plan to get into the Somali pirate-fighting business a couple of years ago, according to a newly released Wikileaks document. The problem: Blackwater actually sounded worse than the Somali pirates.

The NYT reports that Blackwater's business never really got off the ground because the US government was understandably reluctant to help the company drum up business. For one thing, Blackwater said it wouldn't take any pirates into custody, but it would happily "use lethal force against pirates if necessary," because dead bodies are much easier to handle than prisoners. Also turns out Blackwater was acting like, you know, Blackwater:

One former crew member said, according to legal documents, that the ship's captain, who had been drinking during a port call in Jordan, ordered him "placed in irons" (handcuffed to a towel rack) after he was accused of giving an unauthorized interview to his hometown newspaper in Minnesota. The captain, according to the lawsuit, also threatened to place the sailor in a straitjacket. Another crew member, who is black, claimed in court documents that he was repeatedly subjected to racial epithets.

Don't worry, they have lots of other U.S. government contracts to fall back on!

[NYT
. Photo: AP]