Also on list: Royal Caribbean, Deutsche Bank, Chevron
The company, long in the public eye, has been known for brutal tactics and as a mercenary for the US State Department in countries where the US has boots on the ground. What hasn't been known, however, is that the same company was handling intelligence ops for publicly-traded US companies.
Atop the list is Monsanto, the biotech giant, who The Nation's Jeremy Scahill revealed Wednesday accepted a proposal through a Blackwater subsidiary which
Monsanto doesn't stand alone. Through a network of 30 subsidiaries and shell corporations, Blackwater-linked entities provided "intelligence, training and security services" to a cache of major multinational firms, including: Monsanto, Chevron, the Walt Disney Company, Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines, Deutsche Bank and Barclays, according to documents Scahill obtained.
Blackwater's owner and founder, Erik Prince -- who has himself been linked to the CIA -- helped train companies through two other firms he controlled: Total Intelligence Solutions and the Terrorism Research Center.
Not surprisingly, no one responded to requests for comment.
Monsanto topped the list of firms using Prince's services, Scahill writes.
....In an... e-mail to The Nation, Wilson confirmed he met Black in Zurich and that Monsanto hired Total Intelligence in 2008 and worked with the company until early 2010. He denied that he and Black discussed infiltrating animal rights groups, stating "there was no such discussion." He claimed that Total Intelligence only provided Monsanto "with reports about the activities of groups or individuals that could pose a risk to company personnel or operations around the world which were developed by monitoring local media reports and other publicly available information. The subject matter ranged from information regarding terrorist incidents in Asia or kidnappings in Central America to scanning the content of activist blogs and websites." Wilson asserted that Black told him Total Intelligence was "a completely separate entity from Blackwater."
The Walt Disney Company hired Total Intelligence and TRC to do a "threat assessment" for potential film shoot locations in Morocco, with former CIA officials Black and Richer reaching out to their former Moroccan intel counterparts for information. The job provided a "good chance to impress Disney," one company executive wrote. How impressed Disney was is not clear; in 2009 the company paid Total Intelligence just $24,000.
Total Intelligence and TRC also provided intelligence assessments on China to Deutsche Bank.
Prince, now the owner of Blackwater successor Xe Services, now has his eyes on another target: the Democrats.
He's now writing a book alleging that officials in the Clinton and Obama administrations "approved of his most sensitive and controversial operations," according to a report by veteran intel reporter Jeff Stein published in The Washington Post earlier this month.
The Post's Jeff Stein cited two unnamed sources who say Erik Prince, the founder of Blackwater, is hurrying to sell his company before he can go public with a book that takes aim at the Democratic Party. One of the sources told Stein that Prince and his friends "think this will destroy the Democratic Party in the elections."
The source, who is described as having a "business relationship with Xe," said Prince had "given his people three weeks to complete the sale of the company and the book will be released then," in time for the November elections.
To read about the firm's work for Barclay's, and the companies network of "black op" subsidiaries, click here to read Scahill's full report.