There was a big article in a German paper that highlighted these new mercenaries that were in a certain way different and not different from mercenaries we know, like Schrappe and company, a German guy by the name of Congo Muller in the sixties, who was quite famous for the atrocities he committed there, and Bob Dinard, another guy who was basically causing mayhem in the newly independent states.
These guys were doing it in a sort of different way. They were hired as an army and not as individuals, and they were interestingly hired by governments, or at least on the demand of Governments. The first Government that hired this Executive Outcomes group was Angola.
These mercenaries were former soldiers in the apartheid battalions that invaded the newly independent states of Angola and Mozambique, and their motto was shoot to kill and no prisoners.
So they was certainly one of the most feared groups, one of the most ruthless groups, and they were fighting for the wrong cause, to basically invade and destabilise the newly independent countries, because the newly independent countries were also harbouring the liberation movements for Namibia and South Africa, the ANC and the SWAPO.
As I said, there was a big article that appeared in 1997, that showed who is actually behind this Executive Outcomes. One leading figure was Tony Buckingham, he was owner of a small oil company, and he hired two people who were formerly in the British armed forces, by the name of Tim Spicer and Simon Mann, and they together formed a trio together with an accountant who was fallen out of favour in one of the big British accounting practices, his name was Michael Grunberg. [This was the nucleus of Sandline International, rather than Executive Outcomes, which Buckingham had earlier helped bring into Angola. – Green Ribbon]
I gave a talk in our Rotary Club in Bulawayo, about this mercenary company, and this article highlighted quite well not only the players in it, but the dangers these mercenaries were posing because they didn’t come on a charity mission. They wanted to be paid, and the payment was in the mining licenses, diamond mines, titanium mines, especially in Sierra Leone, later on they got huge diamond mines in Angola, concessions for diamond mines and for oil.
The countries that hired Executive Outcomes were mortgaging their own mineral wealth, that is there to support the population, to improve the health system, to basically sort out clean water. They were mortgaging them to these mercenaries, who certainly were only there to make profit and to take the wealth out of the country afterwards.