Iraq's Minister for National Security says charges will be laid against Blackwater personnel in connection with the recent shooting deaths of eight or more civilians in Baghdad.
According to a report in the New York Times: a preliminary report of findings by the Interior Ministry, the National Security Ministry and the Defense Ministry stated that “the murder of citizens in cold blood in the Nisour area by Blackwater is considered a terrorist action against civilians just like any other terrorist operation.”
My question is just who is going to round up these suspects and bring them before an Iraqi court? Blackwater's mercenary army in Iraq is unquestionably as powerful as any Iraqi armed force, save perhaps for the country's militias. I suppose the US military could take them into custody but, no, I've heard reliable reports that Dick Cheney isn't dead yet. Maybe Blackwater will just surrender these guys. What are the chances?
Nouri al-Maliki has taken a stab at banning Blackwater outright but it wasn't much of a stab and it missed. Blackwater remains very much on the job on America's payroll. So much for Iraqi sovereignty.
Maliki has picked a fight he may not be able to win but may not survive if he loses.