Hold your breath. John Ashcroft–George W. Bush’s first attorney general and champion of the Patriot Act–has just taken an ethical advisory position with Xe Services, the military contractor formerly known as Blackwater Worldwide.

Blackwater has employed tens of thousands of private mercenaries in the Middle East since the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan, some of whom were shown slaughtering Iraqi civilians in the WikiLeaks-released Iraq war logs. –ARK


Ashcroft, who became a controversial figure while serving as George W. Bush’s attorney general from 2001 to 2005, will head the company’s subcommittee on governance, which “will focus on the company’s efforts to maximize governance, compliance and accountability, continuing to build and promote the highest degrees of ethics and professionalism within the private security industry.”

… In a company statement, the chairman of the Xe’s board, Red McCombs, said Ashcroft’s “experience, unparalleled reputation for integrity and personal commitment to ethics, transparency, and excellence” made him a good pick for the job, bringing big-name legal clout to the company.

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