Patriots for Profit: Contractors and the Military in U.S. National Security

By Thomas C. Bruneau | Go to book overview

6
AN ASSESSMENT OF THE PERFORMANCE OF
THE PRIVATE SECURITY CONTRACTORS

This chapter analyzes the results of outsourcing security to private security contractors (PSCs) by applying the three-part framework developed in Chapter 2 and applied to the uniformed military in Chapter 3. While Chapter 3 presented the framework’s components in the order of control, efficiency, and effectiveness, however, this analysis will begin with efficiency, a more logical sequence in this case because much of the material for this section is from congressional guidance on oversight and auditing, which is all about efficiency. Furthermore, as some of the factors that influence effectiveness also affect matters of control, it makes sense to discuss effectiveness next, before assessing control.

Using this framework to analyze the PSCs has two major values. First, it allows us to compare and contrast the activities of the uniformed military and the contractors according to those three critical dimensions of performance, which has become increasingly important now that contractors are part of the “total force,” have taken on some of the missions that were previously the monopoly of the military, and, as a whole, even outnumber the uniformed military in Iraq and Afghanistan. The resulting analysis will allow us to systematically identify problems in control and effectiveness that have been touched on in other studies of security contracting. The comparisons will be displayed in Chapter 7 in Table 7.1, and the remedies to the challenges will be evaluated in the Conclusion. The second value of this method is that it organizes the prodigious and potentially overwhelming amount of data from government reports and audits in a logical and coherent, and thus more useful, manner.

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