Amid reports that President Donald Trump is "showing renewed interest" in Blackwater founder Erik Prince's plan to hand the war in Afghanistan over to a private army led by an "American viceroy," MSNBC on Friday happily gave the notorious war profiteer a cushy platform to make his nonsensical and dangerous pitch to the president almost entirely unchallenged.
"Trumponomics: What’s better than an unwinnable war? An unwinnable war your political cronies can profit from on the taxpayer's dime."
—David Rothkopf"Shame on MSNBC for giving Erik Prince a megaphone," Stephen Miles, director of Win Without War, wrote on Twitter following Prince's interview with MSNBC's Andrea Mitchell. "He belongs in The Hague, not spewing his warmongering for profit filth on television."
Highlighting the failure of both the deadly "conventional" approach the U.S. has taken in Afghanistan over the past 16 years and Prince's plan to continue the war for profit, Miles went on to suggest an option that—for obvious reasons—Mitchell and Prince both ignored, one that is virtually never aired on corporate media networks like MSNBC.
"What if—hear me out—instead of privatizing the war in #Afghanistan, we ended it," Miles wrote. "Crazy, I know."
— Stephen Miles (@SPMiles42) August 17, 2018
Prince's appearance on MSNBC came shortly after NBC News reported that Trump is growing increasingly impatient with his own administration's strategy and looking toward Prince—the brother of billionaire Education Secretary Betsy DeVos—for possible alternatives.
"The fact that Reality Winner is going to be sent to prison for 5 years and Erik Prince is still walking free and poised to send his murderous mercenaries into Afghanistan pretty much sums up where we come to as a country."
—Jeffrey St. Clair, CounterPunch
"When Prince's plan had Trump's attention in 2017, it had the backing of his former strategist Steve Bannon and the president's son-in-law and senior adviser, Jared Kushner," NBC reported.
In recent meetings, Trump "has pressed his advisers about Afghanistan progress" and expressed interest in Prince's plan to privatize the war, NBC noted, citing anonymous administration officials.
As usually happens when Prince makes his periodic appearances on corporate news shows to tout his opportunistic, for-profit war plan, critics were quick to highlight his horrendous track-record and argue that his plan to privatize the war in Afghanistan would lead to even less oversight and more bloodshed.
As head of Blackwater, Erik Prince’s mercenaries committed multiple war crimes in Iraq and were convicted for their involvement in the Nissour Square massacre that killed 17 civilians. He deserves an investigation, not contracts to wage a private war in Afghanistan. https://t.co/fiWy1HYTIW
— Rep. Ro Khanna (@RepRoKhanna) August 17, 2018
Cronyism on the battlefield. This is a prescription for endless war.https://t.co/0SpdXsMX5y
— Ron Wyden (@RonWyden) August 17, 2018
Trumponomics: What’s better than an unwinnable war? An unwinnable war your political cronies can profit from on the taxpayer’s dime. https://t.co/KL3Ueud8vk
— David Rothkopf (@djrothkopf) August 17, 2018
The fact that Reality Winner is going to be sent to prison for 5 years and Erik Prince is still walking free & poised to send his murderous mercenaries into Afghanistan pretty much sums up where we come to as a country...https://t.co/yLcBbhlNbB
— Jeffrey St. Clair (@JSCCounterPunch) August 17, 2018