The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

CCR Urges Support of Stop Outsourcing Security Legislation Introduced Today

Group Representing Victims of Private Military Contractors Calls on Congress to End the Use of Unaccountable Shadow Armies


Today, the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR)
issued the following statement in response to the introduction in
Congress of the Stop Outsourcing Security legislation by Rep. Jan
Schakowsky (IL) in the House and the companion bill by Sen. Bernie
Sanders (VT) in the Senate:

Military contracting is out of control. Contractors far outnumber
the U.S. military in Afghanistan, making it the most contracted out war
in US history. Poor oversight of contracts has led to billions of
taxpayer dollars being wasted in what Congress's own Commission on
Wartime Contracting has called "fiscal hemorrhaging." It is also
extremely difficult to hold these shadow armies accountable for serious
abuses committed.

CCR has been representing Iraqi plaintiffs in litigation against U.S.
contractors since 2004. Despite allegations of grave human rights
abuses at the hands of U.S. private military contractors in Iraq,
former Iraqi detainees who have been tortured or otherwise abused have
yet to have their day in court. Over the last five years, contractors'
arguments that they should be granted immunity or that lawsuits brought
against them are somehow improper have stalled efforts by CCR and
co-counsel to hold these contractors accountable.

Every member of Congress should support this legislation to defend the
human rights of all people from contractors, to protect taxpayer money
from fraud and waste, and return core governmental functions to the

CCR has represented victims against the private military contractors
CACI and Titan/L-3 for their alleged role in the torture and other
abuse of more than 250 Iraqi plaintiffs at Abu Ghraib and other
detention centers throughout Iraq, and victims of Blackwater shootings
in Iraq. For information on the cases, visit our CACI case page and our Blackwater case page. For information on our campaign to end the use of private military contractors, visit the Stand Down page.

The Center for Constitutional Rights is dedicated to advancing and protecting the rights guaranteed by the United States Constitution and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. CCR is committed to the creative use of law as a positive force for social change.

(212) 614-6464