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【每日晨读】经济学人GRE双语阅读 雇佣兵集团黑水公司转型

2017年12月01日17:22 来源:互联网
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【每日晨读】经济学人GRE双语阅读 雇佣兵集团黑水公司转型图1

Private military contractors——Beyond Blackwater

雇佣兵:黑水公司之后

An industry reinvents itself after the demise of its most controversial firm

有争议公司倒闭后重新兴起的一种产业

WE WERE selling 1m a year in merchandise with the company logo on it, says Erik Prince with a mixture of nostalgia and defiance.

带着缅怀又不屑情绪的Erik Prince说:过去我们一年能卖掉100万美元带公司商标的产品。

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Blackwater, the company in question, rose to worldwide prominence as an outsourced branch of the American army during the occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan.

尚存争议的黑水公司因参与了伊拉克战争和阿富汗战争作了美国的分支而引起世界范围的关注。

It had plenty of admirers for the way it had pioneered a new branch of the defence industry, earning a total of around 2 billion from Uncle Sam for providing armed personnel to the Pentagon, the State Department and, secretly, the CIA.

它因秘密给美国五角大楼、国务院和中情局提供武装保镖年入20亿美元而成为国防行业的新分支,引来了无数的追随者。

But the firm was overwhelmed by its more numerous critics, who said it was an undisciplined, unaccountable bunch of mercenaries.

然而它却受不起更多数量抨击者的轰击,说他们是一群无组织无纪律无责任感的雇佣兵。

In 2010 Mr Prince gave up the fight.

2010年普林斯先生放弃了这场争斗。

He sold the firm, which he had founded in 1997 and which got its first big break by teaching police to handle school shootings after the 1999 Columbine massacre.

他卖掉了自己1997年创立的公司,该公司因1999年科仑拜校园事件后教授警察处理校园枪击事件而迎来首次重大突破。

It is smaller now and mostly does less controversial work such as guarding diplomats and providing training.

现在它的规模变小了,通常做诸如保护外交官和提供培训这些较少有争议的事宜。

Its new name, Academi, could scarcely sound less agGREssive.

它的新名字Academi听起来也不那么富有攻击性。

Mr Prince has started talking, after a long silence, to promote his book, Civilian Warriors, in which he mounts a defence of his firm as unyielding as a Blackwater contractor under enemy fire.

一段时间的沉默之后,普林斯先生已经开始发话了,来促销他的书作《Civilian Warriors》。在书中他给自己的公司套上了不屈的盾牌,就像敌军战火下的黑水公司。

Mr Prince says he never intended to build a new sort of defence firm.

普林斯先生说他从没有想过要建立一个新型的防卫公司。

But he stumbled on a huge opportunity to fill gaps in military capacity cost-effectively.

但是他偶然发现了一个巨大的机遇,来填补军事规模成本问题上的空缺。

Blackwater provided security to government officials such as Paul Bremer, the head of the transitional authority after the invasion of Iraq, and after that, senior State Department employees in Iraq and Afghanistan.

黑水公司在伊拉克遭侵略后为过渡政府首领Paul Bremer这样的政府官员提供庇佑,在这之后为在伊拉克和阿富汗的美国国务院高级雇员提供庇佑。

He says he got his entrepreneurial instinct from his father, who built a successful motor-industry supplier and taught him that the best way to win and keep a customer is always to say yes, then overdeliver—a formula that worked spectacularly well for Blackwater until the deadly nature of its overdelivery became so controversial.

他说他从他的父亲那里得到了企业家的天性,他的父亲是个成功的汽车工业供应商,教会他赢得和保持一位客户的最有效的方法就是常说yes,然后为之付出。这也是黑水公司因这种付出遭来非议而自然死亡前一直运行异常顺利的准则。

Now he is glad to be out of the industry he helped build. With the winding down of America's military campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan, it has become a very crowded field; too many firms competing for a shrinking pie. But Blackwater's demise created space for two rivals: DynCorp International, a 60-year-old firm that diversified into military security, and Triple Canopy, founded in 2003 with a similar business model to Blackwater's.

现在他很高兴自己不在自己帮助创立的产业里。借着美国入侵伊拉克和阿富汗的东风,它成为非常拥挤的领域;太多的公司去争一块正在萎缩的馅饼。但是黑水公司的倒闭创造了两个竞争对手:有着60多年历史的在军事安全方面多样化的DynCorp International和2003年建立的与黑水公司有着类似贸易的Triple Canopy。

【每日晨读】经济学人GRE双语阅读 雇佣兵集团黑水公司转型图2

Groups such as Human Rights First campaign against governments' use of private military contractors, and Barack Obama attacked Blackwater in his first presidential campaign.

类似于人权至上的组织游行抗议政府雇佣私人雇佣兵,巴拉克奥巴马在他的第一次总统大选中就抨击了黑水公司。

George Bush responded by modestly tightening the rules on its deployment.

乔治布什的回应则更谨慎些,就是扣紧了调度的规章制度。

But there has been no change of course since Mr Obama took office.

但是显然在奥巴马上任后情况没有任何变化。

There is no going back, we just need to figure out the new rules for when private military firms should be used and when they should not, says Sean McFate, an academic at Georgetown University who previously worked for DynCorp.

乔治城大学的一位曾替DynCorp 工作过的学者Sean McFate 表示:事情没有任何好转,我们得出台新的条例,规定私人雇佣兵何时可用,何时不可。

Post-Blackwater, two trends have dominated the new industry, says Mr McFate: globalisation and indigenisation.

在黑水公司之后,这个全新的产业被两种趋势所左右,McFate先生说:那就是全球化和本土化。

On the supply side, there are a growing number of private military firms, and not all of the new ones were formed by former special forces from Western powers, such as Aegis and Blue Mountain, two British firms.

在供给方,私人军事公司数量日渐增多,而且不是所有的新公司都是由像英国Aegis和Blue Mountain这样的西方强者的前特种部队组成的。

Warlords in places such as Afghanistan and Somalia are creating contracting firms that they staff with local talent.

阿富汗和索马里这样的军阀正创立提供本地人才的合同公司。

Their embattled national governments are seeing the merits in contracting out security.

各国政府都严阵以待,观察合同外包安保的优势。

So America is no longer the only big buyer of private force, notes Mr McFate.

McFate先生表示因此美国不再是唯一的私人雇佣兵的大买家了。

One thing that would greatly improve the industry's prospects is if the United Nations began using private contractors for peacekeeping missions, as it is said to be considering.

但是有件事可以大大改善该产业前景,那就是如果联合国为维护和平开始雇佣私人军队,当然只是如果。

Today, such missions are staffed by soldiers from poorer countries, who are often badly trained.

如今,这样的任务交给了相对贫困国家经过刻苦训练的士兵去完成。

Mr Prince thinks that private contracting would make the UN more effective, but he has no intention of going after that business.

普林斯先生认为私人雇佣兵可以使联合国办事效率更高,但是他并不打算追求那样的生意。

For him, the new promised land is Africa, where he is investing in firms providing services to the oil and gas industry, in places where he thinks his expertise in providing logistics and security can give him a competitive edge.

对他来说,新的乐土在非洲,在他认为他提供后勤和安保的专门技术有相当竞争优势的地方,为石油和天然气产业提供服务。

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