Friday, February 26, 2010

Rep. Alan Grayson Rescued by Military Contractor, Blackwater Xe

by Maggie at Maggie's Notebook

Rep. Alan Grayson was in Niger with a science and technology congressional delegation when the Niger military decided to have a coup. Grayson was hustled of the country on a flight believed to be that of a military contractor.

Alan Grayson

Daniel Schulman, writing for Mother Jones Online on Alternet reports:
Rep. Alan Grayson (D-FL) who made his substantial fortune by suing military contractors and later lambasted them as a lawmaker, was indeed evacuated from Niger by personnel working for Xe Services (the private security empire formally known as Blackwater), his spokesman confirms.
 From CNN:
He heard gunshots in a building next door on the day military leaders stormed the nation's presidential palace and suspended its constitution.

He was taken to the U.S. embassy and put under guard -- it's not clear by whom -- and then flown to Brukina Faso, according to CNN.
 More from Daniel Schulman:
...a Blackwater executive testifying before Congress today said, in an apparent reference to Grayson: "Xe Services, through its subsidiary Presidential Airways, provides aviation support and medevac services to Defense Department personnel in Africa. Just last week, our personnel evacuated a congressman from Niger during civil unrest."
Grayson, a razor-tongued trash talking attack dog sued an American security firm operating in Iraq, Custer Battles LLC ,for "false claims," and won the case. His fees for the case exceeded $4 million. At the time this case was settled in 2006, the Wall Street Journal described Grayson this way:
A fierce critic of the war in Iraq, Mr. Grayson drives an aging Cadillac emblazoned with anti-administration bumper stickers such as "Bush Lied, People Died." ...
Here's some insight into Alan Grayson from his constitutents. The important part of the  video below starts about 1 minute 40 seconds in.

Alan Grayson and the First Amendment

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