How and Why We Must Care About Regulation?

  • Jovana Jezdimirovic Ranito


This chapter offers a brief historical preview of the regulation of the contracted violence through history, demonstrating that it is not a new phenomenon. It covers US regulatory evolution and use of private violence both domestically and internationally. Then it presents an international normative framework, completing it with a network of recent national and international initiatives. Finally, it looks at how the USA currently regulates private security contractors, by addressing Congressional, Defense Department, and State Department structures and regulations.


  1. Abrahamsen, Rita, and Michael C. Williams. 2010. Security Beyond the State: Private Security in International Politics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Avant, Deborah. 2000. “From Mercenary to Citizen Armies: Explaining Change in the Practice of War.” International Organization 54 (1): 41–72.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Avant, Deborah. 2005. The Market for Force: The Consequences of Privatizing Security. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  4. Avant, Deborah. 2016. “Pragmatic Networks and Transnational Governance of Private Military and Security Services.” International Studies Quarterly 60 (2): 330–42.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Axelrod, Alan. 2014. Mercenaries: A Guide to Private Armies and Private Military Companies. Thousand Oaks, CA: CQ Press.Google Scholar
  6. Backman, Clifford. 2003. The Worlds of Medieval Europe. New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  7. Bakker, Christine. 2009. Obligations of States to Prosecute Employees of Private Military and Security Companies for Serious Human Rights Violations. EUI Working papers. Florence: European University Institute.Google Scholar
  8. Börzel, Tanja, and Jana Hoenke. 2010. “From Compliance to Practice: Mining Companies and the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights in the Democratic Republic of Congo.” In APSA 2010 Annual Meeting Paper.
  9. Botha, Christo. 1999. “From Mercenaries to ‘Private Military Companies’: The Collapse of the African State and the Outsourcing of State Security.” South African Yearbook of International Law 24: 133–48.Google Scholar
  10. Breuer, Lanny. 2011. “Statment of Lanny A. Breuer, Assistant Attorney General Criminal Division Department of Justice, Before the Committee on the Judiciary United States Senate for a Hearing Entitled ‘Holding Criminals Accountable: Extending Criminal Jurisdiction for Government Contractors and Employees Abroad.’” Department of Justice.
  11. Brickell, Myssie. 2010. “Obligations of States to Prosecute Employees of Private Military and Security Companies for Serious Human Rights Violations.” Legislation and Policy Brief 2 (2), Article 3.Google Scholar
  12. Brown, Kimberly N. 2013. “We the People, Constitutional Accountability, and Outsourcing Government.” Indiana Law Journal 88 (4): 1347–403.Google Scholar
  13. Bruneau, Thomas. 2011. Patriots for Profit: Contractors and the Military in the US National Security. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press.Google Scholar
  14. Buel Jr., Richard. 1984. “Samson Shorn: The Impact of The Revoluntionary War on the Estimates of the Republic’s Strength.” In Arms and Independence: The Military Character of the American Revolution, edited by Ronald Hoffman and Peter J. Albert, 141–65. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press.Google Scholar
  15. Churchill, Ward. 2004. “From the Pinkertons to the PATRIOT Act: The Trajectory of Political Policing in the United States, 1870 to the Present.” The New Centennial Review 4 (1): 1–72.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Cilliers, Jakkie, and Ian Douglas. 1999. “The Military as Business–Military Professional Resources, Incorporated.” In Peace, Profit or Plunder?: The Privatisation of Security in War-Torn African Societies, edited by Peggy Masson and Jakkie Cilliers, 111–22. Pretoria: Institute for Security Studies.Google Scholar
  17. Collins, John P. 1997. “Speaking in Code: Bernstein v. United States Department of State, 922 F. Supp. 1426 (N. D. Cal. 1996); Bernstein v. United States Department of State, 945 F. Supp. 1279 (N. D. Cal. 1996).” The Yale Law Journal 106 (8): 2691–96.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Committee on Armed Services United States Senate. 2010. Inquiry into the Role and Oversight of Private Security Contractors in Afghanistan. Washington, DC: United States Senate.
  19. CWC. 2011. Final Report to Congress: Transforming Wartime Contracting: Controlling Costs Reducing Risks. Washington, DC: Commission on Wartime Contracting in Iraq and Afghanistan.Google Scholar
  20. Deàk, Francis, and Philip Jessup. 1939. A Collection of Neutrality Laws, Regulation and Treaties of Various Countries. Washington, DC: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.Google Scholar
  21. DeWinter-Schmitt, Rebecca. 2016. “Congress Needs to Pass CEJA.” Human Analytics (Blog), February 5, 2016.
  22. ———. 2017. “The Value-Add of the ICoCA: A ‘Strong Sword.’” Human Analytics (Blog), November 13, 2017.
  23. Dinstein, Yoram. 2010. The Conduct of Hostilities Under the Law of International Armed Conflict. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Diodorus. 1983. Diodorus of Sicily. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  25. DOD. 1999. Army Regulation 715–9: Contractors Accompanying the Force. Washington, DC: Department of Defense.
  26. ———. 2003. Field Manual 3-100.21 Contractors on the Battlefield. Washington, DC: Department of Defense.Google Scholar
  27. ———. 2005. “DODI 3020.41: Contractor Personnel Authorized to Accompany the U.S. Armed Forces.” Department of Defense.
  28. ———. 2009. “DoDI 3020.50: Private Security Contractors (PSCs) Operating in Contingency Operations, Humanitarian or Peace Operations, or Other Military Operations or Exercises.” Department of Defense.
  29. ———. 2010. “DODI 5128.34: Defense Materiel Readiness Board (DMRB).” Department of Defense.
  30. ———. 2011. “DoDI 3020.41: Operational Contract Support (OCS).” Department of Defense.
  31. ———. 2012. COR Handbook. Washington, DC: Department of Defense.Google Scholar
  32. ———. 2016. “Defense Contracting Management Agency.”
  33. DOD and DoS. 2007. “Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) Between the Department of Defense and the Department of State on USG Private Security Contractors.”
  34. DoS. 2013. “State Department to Incorporate International Code of Conduct into Worldwide Protective Services Contracts.” Press Release|Media Note. U.S. Department of State. August 16, 2013.
  35. DoS, DoD, and USAID. 2008. “Memorandum of Understanding Between the US Department of State and the US Department of Defense and the US Agency for International Development Relating to Contracting in Iraq and Afghanistan.”
  36. Elsea, J.K. 2010. Private Security Contractors in Iraq and Afghanistan: Legal Issues. Darby: DIANE Publishing.Google Scholar
  37. Enion, M. Rhead. 2009. “Constitutional Limits on Private Policing and the State’s Allocation of Force.” Duke Law Journal 59 (3): 519–53.Google Scholar
  38. Fainaru, Steve. 2008. Big Boy Rules: America’s Mercenaries Fighting in Iraq. Cambridge, MA and Philadelphia: Da Capo Press.Google Scholar
  39. Falk, Stanley L. 1964. “The National Security Council Under Truman, Eisenhower, and Kennedy.” Political Science Quarterly 79 (3): 403–34.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. FAR. 2015. Ending Trafficking in Persons. Washington, DC: Department of Defense.
  41. Fenwick, Charles G. 1913. The Neutrality Laws of the United States. Washington, DC: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.Google Scholar
  42. Fidell, Eugene R. 2008. “Criminal Prosecution of Civilian Contractors by Military Courts.” South Texas Law Review 50: 845.Google Scholar
  43. Freeman, Bennett, Maria B. Pica, and Christopher N. Camponovo. 2000. “New Approach to Corporate Responsibility: The Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights, A.” Hastings International and Comparative Law Review 24: 423.Google Scholar
  44. Frisk, Daniel. 2009. Contractors¿ Support of U.S. Operations in Iraq. Collingdale, PA: Diane Publishing.Google Scholar
  45. GAO. 2012. Management and Oversight Improvements Needed in Afghanistan. GAO-12-290. Washington, DC: United States Government Accountability Office.
  46. Garin, Eugenio, ed. 1997. Renaissance Characters. Translated by Lydia G. Cochrane. 1st ed. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  47. Gaston, E. L. 2008. “Mercenarism 2.0—The Rise of the Modern Private Security Industry and Its Implications for International Humanitarian Law Enforcement.” Harvard International Law Journal 49: 221.Google Scholar
  48. Gathii, James Thuo. 2009. “Commercializing War: Private Military and Security Companies, Mercenaries and International Law.” Legal Studies Research Papers Series.
  49. Gill, Martin, and Kateri Caramola, eds. 2014. “Private Military and Security Companies: Armed, Global, Regulated and Professional?” In The Handbook of Security, 747–66. London: Palgrave Macmillan.Google Scholar
  50. Globe News Wire. 2015. “ISO Publishes Security Operations Management System Standard Based on ANSI/ASIS.PSC.1:2012.” GlobeNewswire News Room, September 24, 2015.
  51. Gomez del Prado, José. 2011. “A United Nations Instrument to Regulate and Monitor Private Military and Security Contractors.” Notre Dame Journal of International, Comparative, & Human Rights Law 1 (1): 1–79.Google Scholar
  52. Government and Contract Bid. 2015. “Procurement Task Order Fr Department of Satte WPS 2015 Contract.”
  53. Hackman, Gable F. 2007. “Slipping Through the Cracks: Can We Hold Private Security Contractors Accountable for Their Actions Abroad.” Loyola Journal of Public Interest Law 9: 251.Google Scholar
  54. Hall, William. 1874. The Rights and Duties of Neutrals. London: Longmans Green & Co.Google Scholar
  55. Hedahl, Marcus. 2009. “Blood and Blackwaters: A Call to Arms for the Profession of Arms.” Journal of Military Ethics 8 (1): 19–33.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Heddell, Gordon. 2011. “DoDig Prepared Statement on ‘Mechanisms Currently in Place to Oversee the Billions of Taxpayer Dollars Spent in Afghanistan and Iraq.’” Presented at the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee on National Security, Homeland Defense, and Foreign Operations, Washington, DC, December 7.
  57. Herbst, Jefferey. 1997. “The Regulation of Private Security Forces.” In The Privatisation of Security in Africa, edited by Mills and John Stremlau. Pretoria: South African Institute of International Affairs.Google Scholar
  58. Holmqvist, Caroline. 2005. “Engaging Armed Non-State Actors in Post-Conflict Settings.” In Security Governance in Post-Conflict Peacebuilding, edited by Alan Bryden and Heiner Hänggi, 45–68. Munster: Lit Verlag.Google Scholar
  59. House of Representatives. 2007. “National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2008.” US Congress.
  60. Hurst, Stephanie. 2011. “‘Trade in Force’: The Need for Effective Regulation of Private Military and Security Companies.” Southern California Review 84: 447–86.Google Scholar
  61. Hughes, Geraint. 2014. “Soldiers of Misfortune: The Angolan Civil War, the British Mercenary Intervention, and UK Policy Towards Southern Africa, 1975–6.” The International History Review 36 (3): 493–512.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  62. Isaac, Larry W., and Daniel M. Harrison. 2006. “Corporate Warriors: The State and Changing Forms of Private Armed Force in America.” In Globalization Between the Cold War and Neo-Imperialism, 153–88. Bingley: Emerald Group Publishing Limited.Google Scholar
  63. Isenberg, David. 2008. Shadow Force: Private Security Contractors in Iraq. New York: Praeger.Google Scholar
  64. ———. 2012. “Servicing the State Department.” The Huffington Post, February 8, 2012.
  65. Jackson, Katherine. 2007. “Not Quite a Civilian, Not Quite a Soldier: How Five Words Could Subject Civilian Contractors in Iraq and Afghanistan to Military Jurisdiction.” Journal of the National Association of Administrative Law Judiciary 27: 255.Google Scholar
  66. Joh, Elizabeth E. 2006. “The Forgotten Threat: Private Policing and the State.” Global Legal Studies 13 (2): 357–89.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  67. Jones, Oliver. 2009. “Implausible Deniability: State Responsibility for the Actions of Private Military Firms.” Connecticut Journal of International Law 34: 239.Google Scholar
  68. Juma, Laurence. 2011. “Privatisation, Human Rights and Security: Reflections on the Draft International Convention on Regulation, Oversight and Monitoring of Private Military and Security Companies.” Law, Democracy & Development 15 (1).Google Scholar
  69. Kees, Alexander. 2011. “Regulation of Private Military Companies.” Goettingen Journal of International Law 3 (1): 199–216.Google Scholar
  70. Keohane, Robert, and Joseph Nye. 1977. “Realism and Complex Interdependence.” In Power and Interdependence: World Politics in Transition. Boston: Little, Brown.Google Scholar
  71. Kidwell, Deborah C. 2005. Public War, Private Fight? The United States and Private Military Companies: The United States and Private Military Companies. Fort Leavenworth: Combat Studies Institute Press.Google Scholar
  72. Kinsey, Christopher. 2005. “Challenging International Law: A Dilemma of Private Security Companies.” Conflict, Security & Development 5 (3): 269–93. Scholar
  73. ———. 2008. “International Law and the Control of Mercenaries and Private Military Companies.” Cultures & Conflicts,
  74. Krause, Keith. 2011. “Leashing the Dogs of War: Arms Control from Sovereignty to Governmentality.” Contemporary Security Policy 32 (1): 20–39.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  75. Kritsiotis, Dino. 1998. “Mercenaries and the 1 Privatization of Warfare.” The Fletcher Forum of World Affairs 22: 11.Google Scholar
  76. Langley, Lester D., and Thomas David Schoonover. 1995. The Banana Men: American Mercenaries and Entrepreneurs in Central America, 1880–1930. Kentucky: University Press of Kentucky.Google Scholar
  77. Lanning, Michael. 2007. Mercenaries: Soldiers of Fortune, from Ancient Greece to Today’s Private Military Companies. New York: Random House Publishing.Google Scholar
  78. Leahy, Patrick. 2010. Civilian Extraterritorial Jurisdiction Act (CEJA) of 2010 (2010–S. 2979).
  79. ———. 2015. Leahy Introduces Legislation To Hold American Contractors Overseas Accountable Under U.S. Law | U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy of Vermont. Washington, DC: US Senate.
  80. ———. 2014. “Leahy, Price Introduce Legislation to Hold American Contractors Overseas Accountable Under U.S. Law | U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy of Vermont.”
  81. Leander, Anna. 2010. “The Paradoxical Impunity of Private Military Companies: Authority and the Limits to Legal Accountability.” Security Dialogue 41 (5): 467–90.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  82. Mallet, Michael. 2009. Mercenaries and their Masters: Warfare in Renaissance Italy. Barnsley: Pen and Sword.Google Scholar
  83. Mayer, Christopher. 2015. “The U.S. Government’s Support and Involvement in the Development of Auditable Standards for Security Operations and Their Incorporation into DoD Operations and Procurement Policies.” Presented at the ISO 18788: The New Standard for Responsible Security Operations Seminar, American University Washington College of Law, Washington, DC, November 20.
  84. McFate, Sean. 2015. The Modern Mercenary: Private Armies and What They Mean for World Order. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  85. McMahon, Lucas. 2014. The Foederati, the Phoideratoi, and the Symmachoi of the Late Antique East (ca. A.D. 400–650). Ottawa: University of Ottawa.Google Scholar
  86. Mehra, Amol. 2009. “Bridging Accountability Gaps—The Proliferation of Private Military and Security Companies and Ensuring Accountability for Human Rights Violations.” Pacific McGeorge Global Business & Development Law Journal 22 (2): 323–32.Google Scholar
  87. Michaels, Jon D. 2004. “Beyond Accountability: The Constitutional, Democratic, and Strategic Problems with Privatizing War.” Washington University Law Review 82 (3): 1001–127.Google Scholar
  88. Middlekauff, Robert. 1982. The Glorious Cause: The American Revolution, 1763–1789. New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  89. Mockler, Anthony. 1969. The Mercenaries. London: Macmillan.Google Scholar
  90. NDAA. 2011. “National Defense Authorization Act Fiscal Year 2011.” US Congress.Google Scholar
  91. Obama, Barak. 2007. Security Contractor Accountability Act of 2007 (2007–S. 2147).
  92. Oppenheim, Lassa. 1957. International Law. Edited by Hersch Lauterpacht. 7th ed. London: Longmans Green & Co.Google Scholar
  93. Østensen, Åse Gilje. 2011. “UN Use of Private Military and Security Companies: Practices and Policies.” The Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces.
  94. Percy, Sarah. 2007. “Mercenaries: Strong Norm, Weak Law.” International Organization 61 (2): 367–97.Google Scholar
  95. ———. 2013. Regulating The Private Security Industry. London: International Institute for Strategic Studies.Google Scholar
  96. Pope, Amy. 2015. Combating Human Trafficking in Supply Chains. Washington, DC: The White House.
  97. Price, David. 2007. MEJA Expansion and Enforcement Act of 2007 (2007–H.R. 2740).
  98. ———. 2010. Civilian Extraterritorial Jurisdiction Act (CEJA) of 2010 (2010–H.R. 4567).
  99. Rarick, Carissa A. 2015. “Fighting War and Furthering Slavery: The Alarming Truth About Private Military Firms and the Solutions to End Their Involvement in Human Sex Trafficking.” Journal of Global Justice and Public Policy 2: 65.Google Scholar
  100. Scahill, Jeremy. 2008. Blackwater: The Rise of the World’s Most Powerful Mercenary Army: Revised and Updated. New York, NY: MJF.Google Scholar
  101. Schwartz, Moche. 2010. “The Department of Defense’s Use of Private Security Contractors in Iraq and Afghanistan: Background, Analysis, and Options for Congress.” CRS Report for Congress R40835. Washington, DC: Congressional Research Service.
  102. Seavey, James. 1939. Neutrality Legislation in the United States. Washington, DC: Georgetown University.Google Scholar
  103. Simmons, Ric. 2007. “Private Criminal Justice.” Wake Forest Law Review 42: 911.Google Scholar
  104. Singer, Peter Warren. 2010. “The Regulation of New Warfare.” The Politic, February 2010.
  105. Singer, Peter Warren. 2003. Corporate Warriors: The Rise of the Privatized Military Industry. New York: Cornell University Press.Google Scholar
  106. Smith, Thomas. 2008. “Protecting Civilians…or Soldiers? Humanitarian Law and the Economy of Risk in Iraq.” International Studies Perspectives 9: 144–64.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  107. Snell, Angela. 2011. “The Absence of Justice: Private Military Contractors, Sexual Assault, and the US Government’s Policy of Indifference.” University of Illinois Law Review 3: 1125–64.Google Scholar
  108. Solis, William L. 2009. Rebuilding Iraq: DoD and State Department Have Improved Oversight and Coordination of Private Security Contractors in Iraq, But Further Actions are Needed. Washington, DC: GAO.Google Scholar
  109. Stein, Mark S. 2005. “Security Council, the International Criminal Court, and the Crime of Aggression: How Exclusive Is the Security Council’s Power to Determine Aggression.” The Indiana International & Comparative Law Review 16: 1.Google Scholar
  110. Swiss Government. 2010. International Code of Conduct for Private Security Service Providers. Geneve: Swiss Government.Google Scholar
  111. Teichert, Erica. 2014. “Blackwater Case Tests DOJ Authority Over Contractors Abroad.” Crime Prevention & Community Safety (Blog).
  112. Thompson, Janice. 1994. Mercenaries, Pirates and Sovereigns. New Jersey: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  113. Tiefer, Charles. 2009. “No More Nisour Squares: Legal Control of Private Security Contractors in Iraq and After.” Oregon Law Review 88 (3): 745–75.Google Scholar
  114. Trim, D.J.B. 2002. The Chivalric Ethos and the Development of Military Professionalism. Leiden and Boston: Brill.Google Scholar
  115. Trundle, Matthew. 1996. The Classical Greek Mercenary and His Relationship to the Polis. Hamilton, ON: McMaster University.Google Scholar
  116. ———. 2008. Greek Mercenaries: From the Late Archaic Period to Alexander. London and New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  117. UN. 1989. “International Convention Against the Recruitment, Use, Financing and Training of Mercenaries.” United Nations.
  118. Underwood, Matthew. 2012. “Jealousies of a Standing Army: The Use of Mercenaries in the American Revolution and Its Implications for Congress’s Role in Regulating Private Military Firms.” Northwestern University Law Review 102: 317–49.Google Scholar
  119. United Nations. 2010. Draft International Convention on the Regulation, Oversight and Monitoring Of Private Military and Security Companies. New York: UN Human Rights Council.Google Scholar
  120. ———. 2000. “Military Extraterritorial Jurisdiction Act (MEJA).”
  121. Van De Mieroop, Marc. 2011. A History of Ancient Egypt. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.Google Scholar
  122. Waley, Daniel. 1976. Condotte and ‘Condottieri’ in the Thirteenth Century. London: British Academy.
  123. Washington, George. 1776. “The George Washington Papers.”
  124. Waxman, Henry. 2007. Private Military Contractors in Iraq: An Examination of Blackwater’s Actions in Fallujah. Washington, DC: Committee on Oversight and Governmental Affairs.Google Scholar
  125. Weiss, Robert. 1978. “The Emergence and Transformation of Private Detective Industrial Policing in the United States, 1850–1940.” Crime and Social Justice 9: 35–48.Google Scholar
  126. White, Nigel D. 2014. “Peacekeeping, Private Security and International Human Rights Law.” International Community Law Review 16 (4): 443–60.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  127. Xenophon. 1998. Anabasis. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  128. Zenko, Mikah. 2015. “The New Unknown Soldiers of Afghanistan and Iraq.” Foreign Policy, May 29, 2015.

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jovana Jezdimirovic Ranito
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of History and International RelationsUniversity of PortoPortoPortugal

Personalised recommendations