Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Contractor deaths outnumber military for first time

All the following quotes come from Rod Nordland's interesting article, Risks of Afghan War shift from Soldiers to Contractors, published on 11 February by the New York Times.

"Last year, at least 430 employees of American contractors were reported killed in Afghanistan: 386 working for the Defense Department, 43 for the United States Agency for International Development and one for the State Department, according to data provided by the American Embassy in Kabul and publicly available in part from the United States Department of Labor."
By comparison, 418 American soldiers died in Afghanistan last year, according to Defense Department statistics compiled by, an independent organization that monitors war deaths."

"The biggest contractor in terms of war zone deaths is apparently the defense giant L-3 Communications. If L-3 were a country, it would have the third highest loss of life in Afghanistan as well as in Iraq; only the United States and Britain would exceed it in fatalities."

"Over the past 10 years, L-3 and its subsidiaries, including Titan Corporation and MPRI Inc., had at least 370 workers killed and 1,789 seriously wounded or injured through the end of 2011 in Iraq and Afghanistan, records show.
Other American companies with a high number of fatalities are Supreme Group, a catering company, with 241 dead through the end of 2011; Service Employees International, another catering company, with 125 dead; and security companies like DynCorps (101 dead), Aegis (86 dead) and Hart Group (63 dead). In all, according to Labor Department data, 64 American companies have lost more than seven employees each in the past 10 years."

"For every contractor who is killed, many more are seriously wounded. According to the Labor Department’s statistics, 1,777 American contractors in Afghanistan were injured or wounded seriously enough to miss more than four days of work last year."

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