Embassy Scandal: Eight Guards Fired

Provided by the Project on Government Oversight.

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The US embassy in Kabul has fired eight ArmorGroup guards, all of whom appeared in a series of pictures showing the firm’s employees partying half-naked and engaging in lewd acts. The AP reports:

The embassy said Friday the management team of the private contractor that provides the guards is also “being replaced immediately.”

An embassy statement said the guards who were dismissed left the country Friday. Two other guards resigned and also left.

Over at the Washigton Independent, Spencer Ackerman says this move seems a bit too little, too late. “This smells more like crisis management than accountability.” Further, on her Twitter feed, the Project on Government Oversight’s Danielle Brian questions whether the embassy may have sacked some of the wrong guys: “mass firings of Kabul Embassy guards overnight bad guys out, but maybe a few good guys too?”

The men who were fired all appeared in the infamous pics. Is it possible that the embassy axed some of the victims of what POGO described as a culture of “near-weekly deviant hazing and humiliation of subordinates”? Some of the guys shown whooping it up in the pics may look like they’re having a good time, but the guy captured mid-butt shot is being held down by another man. And, perhaps I’m a prude, but I can’t imagine participating in this willingly. I have a message in to Brian seeking clarification on her Tweet. I’m told that POGO is following up and may be releasing additional information. I’ll update when I know more.

UPDATE: Brian is indeed concerned that “unwilling participants” were fired. See here for here full statement.

UPDATE 2: The news POGO is getting from Afghanistan suggests that the “right people are being fired.”

Follow Daniel Schulman on Twitter.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

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Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

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Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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