Al Jazeera English - News: "Violence has continued in Mogadishu, the Somali capital, for a third day, in what the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has called 'the worst fighting in more than 15 years'."
No one knows for sure, but it's believed that as much as 40% of the military budget goes to private contractors including private armies.
There are thousands of private mercenaries operating on behalf of the US in Iraq and elsewhere around the world. Nearly 1,000 have been killed in Iraq alone, but their casualties are not counted. Nor has Congress been able to discover exactly how many mercenaries the US employs there.
One of these firms, Blackwater USA, a big supporter of George Bush, is now deploying in the US. They were present in New Orleans after the levee collapses. "
A sacred right: "Why should I, a Jew from north London, be permitted to take up Israeli citizenship, when that right is denied to a Palestinian who languishes in a refugee camp in Lebanon? Especially when I acknowledge that a large majority of those that left in 1948 were ethnically cleansed by Israeli forces."