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The Whistleblower: Sex Trafficking, Military Contractors, and One Woman's Fight for Justice Kindle Edition

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Length: 257 pages

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Bolkovac, who worked as part of the UN peacekeeping mission in Bosnia in the late 1990s, provides yet another perspective on why private military contracting has encroached on U.S. foreign policy, threatening our image, national security, and the lives of those we are supposed to be protecting. A police officer turned human rights investigator, she worked at uncovering international sex trafficking and cover-ups by her bosses at DynCorp International, which led to her firing, a mad rush across the border, and a subsequent wrongful termination lawsuit in which she was victorious and became the self-described poster girl for everything wrong about security-for-hire. Most galling is the sad truth that DynCorp answered to no law, nor to the military, the U.S., or the Bosnians. The criminality, including rape and murder, committed by corporate military contractors has proliferated in the past decade, and Bolkovac’s cautionary tale ends on the sourest of notes. DynCorp won another federal contract on the heels of her lawsuit, and no one was prosecuted for crimes against the women whose lives she struggled to save. Infuriating and heartbreaking. --Colleen Mondor


“Kathy is a remarkable woman who had the courage to tell the truth and stand up for the victims of sex trafficking, putting her own life on the line. I was deeply moved by her story and hope her voice will be heard, raising awareness about the tragic consequences of war.”--Rachel Weisz

“Women and girls trafficked into Bosnia and Herzegovina's brothels endured debt bondage, rape, and beatings.  International police and peacekeeping forces should have protected these victims.  Instead, some committed trafficking crimes.  Kathy Bolkovac bravely blew the whistle on them.  She paid a high price in her career, but had the integrity to take a stand against grave human rights abuses.”-- Janet Walsh, Deputy Director, Women’s Rights Division of Human Rights Watch

"Rape and forced prostitution perpetrated on a pervasive, ongoing scale by police, military, and other groups protected by regional and even national governments continue to occur into the 21st century.   Regrettably, and quite amazingly, these violent and degrading events do not receive the attention and universal condemnation that a civilized society should demand.   Kathryn Bolkovac and Cari Lynn have demonstrated great personal courage and admirable moral strength in addressing such egregious conduct in The Whistleblower.   A highly disturbing and fascinating expose based upon frightening real life experiences."--Dr. Cyril Wecht, nationally acclaimed forensic pathologist and author of Mortal Evidence

Product Details

  • File Size: 1255 KB
  • Print Length: 257 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0230108024
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press (January 4, 2011)
  • Publication Date: January 4, 2011
  • Sold by: Macmillan
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004CYERM2
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #313,989 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

58 of 63 people found the following review helpful By Been there. A lot. on January 6, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Gotopinions, your response kinda gives you away: you are one of the people involved in booting her out! Only one of them would actually be dumb enough to still call her a liar!
Hell, you might as well go ahead and call the Tribunal that heard her case a bunch of liars! Explain to me: why was the appeal dropped? I bet because DynCorp didn't wanna have the pot stirred any more then it already was.
I've been deployed a lot: people are getting called in to fix errors in their time sheets all the time! Nobody gets fired over that.
Except the woman who `coincidently' also blew the whistle... THAT, we can't have...!

It was about time that someone opened up this sh.. pit! Don't get me wrong: there is a whole lot of good people working for these contractors, but man, accountability when someone seriously screws up (as in: involved in real criminal activities!!) is far fetched! They might get sent home, yes. They might get fired, yes. But I have yet to hear of a case where people like that actually get prosecuted and sentenced for crimes committed abroad while working as a contractor. THAT, Ladies and Gentleman, is the real underlying problem!
Gotopinions, open your eyes and go home, before you get caught...

I suggest making this book mandatory reading for all of Capitol Hill, both sides of the aisle, and FIX IT!
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24 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Harrison Koehli on October 12, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Corruption isn't a unique or uncommon thing. It's the same in any country, whether war-torn and chaotic or nominally democratic. It's just easier in some places than others. But you can count on the corruptible to try, no matter what the conditions. It just so happened that the conditions in Bosnia, where ex-police-officer-then-DynCorp-contractor Kathryn Bolkovac was stationed in 1999. Not only was the country a mess, both socially and physically, but by the very nature of DynCorp's organization and function, chaos reigned supreme. Bolkovac, in telling the story of how she uncovered rampant crime, mismanagement, and arrogance among her fellow UN and DynCorp workers, only to be fired on non-existent evidence and then win a lawsuit for it, becoming a whistleblower in the process, gives some hints as to why this was the case.

Bolkovac is clear in thought that the very idea of corporations providing 'policing' is downright stupid. Corporations exist to make a profit, so if cutting corners and cooking the books will work, you can bet it'll be done. With DynCorp, it's no different. After 'winning the bid' to manage personnel in Bosnia after the war, they did everything they could to make money. That meant, skimping on transportation and services offered to their employees, delivering less than they advertised, overstaffing, taking payment on half-finished or never started projects, offering the barest of training. Basically one big racketeering operation. (There's also the speculation, pretty thinly veiled, that they were/are basically a front for covert military ops.)

Worst of all, this 'cost-benefit' approach to 'nation-building' meant that certain requirements were waived when hiring new recruits.
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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Voracious Reader on January 5, 2011
Format: Hardcover
This book is a real eye-opener. The amazing lack of accountability provides opportunistic private contractors with a well-paid position and access to illegal and unconscionable "perks." The vivid descriptions put the reader right in the middle of the action and reveals how difficult it is to try to do the right thing in a very bad situation. I can't wait to see the movie!
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Mansfield on January 4, 2011
Format: Hardcover
The private military contractor world is larger than the U.S. military and you don't have to look beyond major news headlines to know that there are serious problems. This book shines a light on what goes on behind the scenes and how some contractors view their missions as nothing more than Spring break with the highest paycheck they've ever seen.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Dawn on April 26, 2011
Format: Hardcover
The Whistleblower is one of those books. Once you start, you have to find out how it ends. The book starts with the comic entry of a Nebraska mom into the world of security contracting. Bolkovac reveals her Croatian heritage and how that inspires her to join an international police force through DynCorp, a major corporation whose loose employment procedures are coupled with even looser morals on the ground. DynCorp contracts with the State Department to do national police training in war torn countries, and the more we read the harder it is to understand the U.S. Government's reasons for the partnership.

While Bolkovac naturally finds herself drawn to human rights investigations, she irks her male colleagues by uncovering their complicit behavior in feeding mafia trafficking of underaged women as sex slaves to international forces. The details are disturbing, and the lackadaisical attitude of men charged with keeping peace and security within the UN are even more so. The book could do more to delve into the reasons why international men so readily pay for forced sex and overlook the crime.

Throughout her assignment in Bosnia, Bolkovac is reassigned and demoted for her dogged pursuit of internal investigations. She is eventually fired, and pursues legal action against the company. The justice she receives in her case pales in comparison to the legacy she leaves behind in Bosnia - a cadre of national police and human rights investigators equipped to challenge traffickers in court and free young women. When the movie comes out, it will be a call to conscience for all who see it.
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