Snip from New York Times story:
The fact that the C.I.A. used an outside company for the program was a major reason that Leon E. Panetta, the C.I.A.'s director, became alarmed and called an emergency meeting in June to tell Congress that the agency had withheld details of the program for seven years, the officials said.C.I.A. Sought Blackwater's Help to Kill Jihadists (NYT via Mitch Kapor)
It is unclear whether the C.I.A. had planned to use the contractors to actually capture or kill Qaeda operatives, or just to help with training and surveillance in the program. American spy agencies have in recent years outsourced some highly controversial work, including the interrogation of prisoners. But government officials said that bringing outsiders into a program with lethal authority raised deep concerns about accountability in covert operations.
A related news article, just out today: The Rise and Fall of the Mercenary Formerly Known as Blackwater (Newsweek)
Oh, and by the way, Blackwater has changed its name to "Xe," which I'm none too happy about for personal reasons (cough).
Boing Boing editor/partner and tech culture journalist Xeni Jardin hosts and produces Boing Boing's in-flight TV channel on Virgin America airlines (#10 on the dial), and writes about living with breast cancer. Diagnosed in 2011. @xeni on Twitter. email: email@example.com.