Two more security firms have won contracts worth hundreds of millions of dollars to build the State Department a private army in Iraq, according to a report from Wired's 'Danger Room'.
Contractors Triple Canopy and newcomer Global Strategies Group will contribute to the State Department’s planned protection force of 5,500 contractors.
In September, the State Department announced that eight security firms would share in a $10 billion contract to guard diplomats. Both Triple Canopy and Global were among those firms, which have the right to bid on so-called “task orders” for protecting specific department operations around the world.
One of the first task orders awarded was to SOC, to safeguard the Baghdad embassy, a deal that would net the company up to $973 million over five years.
At the time, that looked like a slap to Triple Canopy, which has provided security forces for the massive compound since 2005, earning itself $438 million in the process.
But while SOC will guard the embassy itself, in what’s called “static security,” Triple Canopy will perform “protective security services” for its residents; When diplomats travel around the Iraqi capital, it’ll be guards for Triple Canopy who’ll protect them.
Triple Canopy has been doing that work since Iraq kicked Blackwater out in 2009 and the State Department (briefly) ended its contract with the firm. It’s more lucrative than guarding a building. Triple Canopy will earn $1.53 billion if the contract runs for the full five-year span of the task order.