Erik Prince’s Training Bases in China

Wednesday, March 8th, 2017

I remember being shocked when I first learned that Erik Prince was able to start a mercenary company in the US. (Blackwater was originally just a tactical training facility before it started hiring out private military contractors.)

He has since moved on to providing logistics in dangerous places via his Frontier Services Group, but they’re not just helping Chinese mining interests in Africa. They’re now setting up Blackwater-style training camps in Chinese provinces:

In December, Frontier Services Group, of which Prince is chairman, issued a press release that outlined plans to open “a forward operating base in China’s Yunnan province” and another in the troubled Xinjiang region, home to the mostly Muslim Uighur minority.

“He’s been working very, very hard to get China to buy into a new Blackwater,” said one former associate. “He’s hell bent on reclaiming his position as the world’s preeminent private military provider.”

In an email to BuzzFeed News, a spokesperson for Frontier Services Group provided a statement and strongly disputed that the company was going to become a new Blackwater, insisting that all of its security services were unarmed and therefore not regulated. “FSG’s services do not involve armed personnel or training armed personnel.” The training at the Chinese bases would “help non-military personnel provide close protection security, without the use of arms.”

Amateurs talk abouts tactics; professionals study logistics. I guess the true professional provides logistics without dirtying his hands doing anything explicitly tactical at all.

By the way, Erik Prince is Betsy DeVos’s brother. I’m surprised that doesn’t come up more often.


  1. Wieland says:

    Fascinating guy, is Erik.

    “Erik Prince is Betsy DeVos’s brother.”

    That I did not know.

    But I do know that a picture of Peter Thiel, Erik Prince, and Donald Trump next to each other exists. But not on the internet.

  2. Adar says:

    Lieutenants think tactics; generals think logistics.

  3. Bob Sykes says:

    Prince will be useful in reforming the Department of Education.

  4. Heath Clyde says:

    Prince will be useful in reforming the State Department.

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