US Admits Idema Contact

by Nathan Hamm on 8/26/2004

I am so coolRemember Jack Idema? He’s the American bounty hunter who was recently arrested in Afghanistan for kidnapping and torturing Afghans. His defense all along has been that he was working for the US government despite said government’s denials of having anything to do with him at all. His story, which is essentially that he worked for the US Army and had frequent contact with high-level Pentagon officials, seems a little hard to buy.

The Pentagon has made a small concession and admitted that they had contact with Idema but rejected his offers. The AP reports that Idema was able to enter Afghanistan with a letter from a US embassy official in Uzbekistan that identified him as a Department of Defense contractor. The State Department says the letter is authentic, but is looking into why it was ever written. The AP also mentions that an unnamed source told the Fayetteville Observer that Idema had signed a contractor agreement under the terms of which Idema would not be allowed to go galavanting about in military gear.

UPDATE: It just occurred to me that, minus the fatigues, I maintained a similar look in Central Asia.


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Nathan is the founder and Principal Analyst for Registan, which he launched in 2003. He was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Uzbekistan 2000-2001 and received his MA in Central Asian Studies from the University of Washington in 2007. Since 2007, he has worked full-time as an analyst, consulting with private and government clients on Central Asian affairs, specializing in how socio-cultural and political factors shape risks and opportunities and how organizations can adjust their strategic and operational plans to account for these variables. More information on Registan's services can be found here, and Nathan can be contacted via Twitter or email.

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