WASHINGTON, August 21 (Sputnik) – Founder of the war contractor formerly known as Blackwater, Erik Prince, during an interview said he hopes White House National Security Adviser John Bolton will be open to considering his plan for privatizing the war in Afghanistan.
Over the weekend, Bolton told ABC News that he was willing to mull new ideas on the war in Afghanistan including replacing US forces with private military contractors.
“With John Bolton there now, I don’t know that he’s vested in a very conventional Pentagon approach,” Prince told The Hill on Monday. “Maybe he’s willing… to exploring options for a solution in Afghanistan.”
In an interview with NBC News last week Prince said his proposal would reduce US troop levels in Afghanistan from 45,000 to 8,000. The current footprint of 15,000 regular US troops and 30,000 contractors would be replaced by 2,000 special forces personnel and 6,000 contractors.
Prince said his plan would represent a substantial cost reduction from the $62 billion the United States plans to spend in Afghanistan in 2019.
Media reported last week that US President Donald Trump might reconsider Prince’s proposal as he was dissatisfied with the troops’ performance in the crisis-torn country. However, a National Security Council spokesperson told the CBS broadcaster on Friday that such a proposition was not under consideration.
Last summer Prince met with White House officials to push his strategy to unleash an army of private contractors overseen by a viceroy to replace US government troops in Afghanistan. Prince said his idea was based on the British East India Company model, a reference to the days of UK colonial rule.