By now I'm sure regular readers of this blog have some notion of the events that unfolded in Orlando early Sunday morning (6/12/16) in Orlando, but for those of you living under a rock or discovering the article in the future, here is a brief rundown:
At roughly 2 AM one Omar Mateen, 29, walked into a Orlando-based LGBT club known as Pulse and opened fired with an assault weapon. When the smoke cleared, nearly a third of the club goers (the venue could hold around 300 people) were wounded. At present (6/13/16) 50 are reported dead and another 53 were wounded. The shooter was allegedly killed by a SWAT team around 5 AM after it raided the club. Mr. Mateen had apparently been holed up in the club for several hours with dozens of hostages before the SWAT team intervened. It is at present unknown how this effected the situation.
Mr. Mateen claimed to be a member of ISIS, and the group claimed credit for the attack,but it is unknown at this point if he actually had contact with the terror network, or was merely a supporter. The FBI had apparently investigated Mr. Mateen for terrorist ties in both 2013 and 2014, but naturally found nothing. Mr. Mateen's parents were from Afghanistan though he was reportedly born in New York. Given his age, it is possible that his parents immigrated to the United States during the Soviet-Afghan War. This simply speculation on this researcher's part, however, as I have found nothing credible to confirm this.
"Omar Mateen, 29, a Florida resident and U.S. citizen who was the son of immigrants from Afghanistan, had worked for G4S since 2007, and was employed at a gated retirement community in South Florida, the company said in a statement late on Sunday.
"He underwent two instances of company screening and background checks – once when he was hired in 2007, and again in 2013.
"In 2013, the company learned that Mateen had been questioned by the FBI but that the inquiries were then closed...
"G4S, which employs 620,000 people and operates in more than 110 countries, provides security services to a slew of U.S. government agencies, including the State Department, Justice Department, U.S. Army and Air Force, and Department of Homeland Security, according to a brochure on its U.S. website.
"Mateen was an armed security officer for G4S, and the company was trying to ascertain whether any guns used in the attack were related to Mateen’s work, said a spokesman who declined to be named...
"The company is no stranger to controversy. It has come under fire from rights advocates for providing services to Israeli prisons holding Palestinian detainees, and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation said in 2014 it sold its stake in G4S.
"Three of the firm’s security guards were acquitted of manslaughter charges in 2014 in the cardiac arrest death of an Angolan aboard a flight from London whom they were repatriating to his native country."
This is only scratching the surface and does not even address the controversy surrounding a subsidiary of GS4, the infamous Wackenhut security firm. Wackenhut was one of the trailblazers of the private security racket and has been a lightening rod for controversy decades before it became a part of G4S in 2004. It was originally founded in 1954 in Coral Gables, FL, by George Wackenhut, a former FBI man. While Wackenhut seems to have originally been founded as a private detective agency, it soon added guard services to its wares and soon thereafter its profile began to skyrocket.
Unsurprisingly, there have long been allegations that Wackenhut had ties to the US intelligence community:
"Of all the articles written about Wackenhut Corporation, probably the most provocative was written by John Connolly for SPY magazine, published in September 1992, pp. 46-54. Connolly, a former New York police officer turned writer, began his story with the following introduction 'What? A big private company – one with a board of former CIA, FBI and Pentagon official; one in charge of protecting nuclear-weapons facilities, nuclear reactors, the Alaskan oil pipeline and more than a dozen American embassies abroad; one with long-standing ties to a radical right-wing organization; one with 30,000 men and women underarms – secretly helped Iraq in its effort to obtain sophisticated weapons? And fueled unrest in Venezuela? This is all the plot of a new best-selling thriller, right? Or The ravings of some overheated conspiracy buff, right? Right? wrong'.
"Connolly highlighted George Wackenhut as a 'hard-line right-winger' who was able to profit from his beliefs by building dossiers on Americans suspected of being Communists or left-leaning 'subversives and synthesizers' and selling the information to interested parties. By 1965, Wackenhut was boasting to potential investors that the company maintained files on 2.5 million suspected dissidents – one and 46 American adults then living.
"In 1966, after acquiring the private files of Karl Barslaag, a former staff member of the House Committee on Un-American Activities, Wackenhut could confidently maintain that with more than 4 million names, it had the largest privately held file on suspected dissidents in America.
"Connolly wrote that it was not possible to overstate the special relationship that Wackenhut enjoys with the federal government. Richard Babayan, claiming to be a CIA contract employee, told SPY that 'Wackenhut has been used by the CIA and other intelligence agencies for years. When they [the CIA] needed cover, Wackenhut is there to provide it for them.'
"Another CIA agent, Bruce Berckmans, who was assigned to the CIA station in Mexico City, but left the agency in January 1975 (putatively) to become a Wackenhut international-operations vice president, told SPY that he had seen a formal proposal submitted by George Wackenhut to the CIA offering Wackenhut offices throughout the world as fronts for CIA activities. In 1981 Berckmans joined with other senior Wackenhut executives to form the company's Special Projects Division...
"SPY also printed testimony from William Corbett, a terrorism expert who spent 18 years as a CIA analyst and is now an ABC news consultant in Europe. Said Corbett, 'For years Wackenhut has been involved with the CIA and other intelligence organizations, including the DEA. Wackenhut would allow the CIA to occupy positions within the company [in order to carry out] clandestine operations. Additionally, Corbett said that Wackenhut supplied intelligence agencies with information, and it was compensated for this – 'in a quid pro quo arrangement' – with government contracts worth billions of dollars over the years."
(The Last Circle, Cheri Seymour, pgs. 46-47)
Even more ominous are the ties Wackenhut had to the Westland New Post, a Belgian neo-fascist paramilitary outfit that has long been linked to the Brabant massacres that rocked Belgium during the 1980s.
"... Wackenhut also drew for some of its employees on the Westland New Post paramilitaries. One of these was a known bomber and hitman, the Frenchman Jean-Francois Calmette, a notorious veteran of the OAS rebellion against de Gaulle and a close conspirator of Yves Guerin-Serac. He was director of the Belgian division of Wackenhut up until 1981, while doubling as a senior Westland New Post commander. These were curious relationships for such a prominent businessman in the security business...
"In 1982, Barbier was assigned as a Wackenhut security guard to the synagogue on the Rue de la Regence in Brussels. During his watch, it mysteriously blew up. The plans of the building were later found in Barbier's home. This same Marcel Barbier was later discovered to be a close personal associate Paul Latinus, effectively his deputy. The plot thickened. Security duties agreed with the Belgian Army involved the strange melting away of Wackenhut security patrols during a number of incidents in which these bases were supposedly attacked by revolutionary forces. In every case, the Strategy of Tension assaults were mounted by paramilitary units, with Westland New Post to the fore...
"In the mid-1980s, Wackenhut closed down in Belgium, amid reports of marching orders from the Ministry of Defense. It may have been that things got too hot for comfort, and the chief clients wanted the show out of town. Judged in the light of later events, Wackenhut's activities in Belgium anticipated mercenary activities by trigger-happy private security contractors of several decades later, notably the infamous Blackwater outfit."
(Gladio: NATO's Dagger at the Heart of Europe, Richard Cottrell, pgs. 306-307)
At this point I would like to stress that all of this is highly speculative and many facts are still coming in regarding the Orlando Massacre. But this researcher believes that Wackenhut's history in Belgium is highly suggestive of how deep intrigues may have played a part in the Orlando Massacre. Obviously Wackenhut is no more and now a part of G4S. But clearly G4S has its own deep intrigues as well and it is certainly possible that it may provide similar services to the CIA or other American and/or Europe intelligence agencies.