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From Fiji to Fallujah: The war on Iraq and the privatisation of Pacific security

Volume 12, Issue 2

September, 2006

From page
47
to page
65
Maclellan, N. (2006). From Fiji to Fallujah: The war on Iraq and the privatisation of Pacific security. Pacific Journalism Review, 12(2): 47-65.
Author(s): Nic Maclellan
Publication date: 
September, 2006

Since the invasion of Iraq in 2003, private security companies from the United Kingdom and United States have been seeking personnel for their operations in the Middle East, and many hundreds of Fijians have signed up. The privatisation of security, a growing trend in the Middle East and Africa, has reached the shores of the South Pacific and governments have little control over former army personnel employed by private military contractors. This article documents the recruitment of Fijian military personnel for service in Iraq and Kuwait, and the casualties that they have faced. The engagement of former military personnel as private military contractors has spilt over into the Pacific as well—from the 1997 Sandline crisis to current events in Bougainville. Since November 2005, the governments of Fiji, Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands have tried to resolve a crisis caused by the presence of former Fijian soldiers in Bougainville.