Operational Implications of Private Military Companies in the Global War on Terror   [open pdf - 426KB]

"This monograph discusses the implications of private military companies (PMCs) in the global war on terror (GWOT). The recent upsurge in the use of PMCs to support the prosecution of the GWOT has impinged increasingly on what is traditionally seen as the state monopoly on violence. PMCs as entities on the stage of conflict are widely misunderstood and as a result, often operate in an area of scant regulation, limited oversight, and ineffective control. As PMCs become increasingly involved in operations, the implications for the military are wide ranging and planners and commanders need to be aware of the capabilities and limitations of PMCs. Currently, little doctrine and guidance exists on PMCs. Specifically, this monograph examines the myriad factors concerned with PMCs, their benefits and disadvantages. The monograph concludes that the considerable utility of PMCs should not be overlooked and that they can be valuable contributors and partners in the GWOT. Several areas regarding PMCs need attention. The study suggests that the rapid growth of the use of PMCs is largely unregulated and not under proper control. With over 15,000 PMC employees in Iraq, too little is known about them and the implications of their presence. A distinct lack of joint and single service doctrine on the subject is further exacerbating the problem. Until there is regulation, control, oversight, and a formal doctrinal framework regarding PMCs, they will not be able to be harnessed effectively to become a fully-fledged partner in the joint fight."

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