A private military contractor which offered “Security management” and “full-service risk management consulting”. It operated during the 1990s and boasted 500 military advisers and over 3000 military personnel, largely drawn from the South African Civil Cooperation Bureau.
In 1988, Eeben Barlow, a former special forces Lt-Col and commander of South Africa’s Civil Cooperation Bureau (CCB) Europe Branch, was tasked by the apartheid regime’s superspy Major Craig Williamson to carry out the Lockerbie bombing on 21 December 1988 by targeting UN Assistant Secretary-General and Commissioner for Namibia, Bernt Carlsson, the most prominent of Pan Am Flight 103’s 270 victims.
The US and Britain were quick to blame Libya for the sabotage of Pan Am 103, but French President Mitterrand – who had refused permission in 1986 for British-based USAF F-111 aircraft to overfly France in a bombing raid on Tripoli and Benghazi – was not convinced.
By mid-September 1989, the shadowy CCB had morphed into the sinister Executive Outcomes (EO) which became the prototype for the sort of private military company (PMC) that would play such a big part in the conflicts at the end of the twentieth and the beginning of the 21st centuries.
Note: The public narrative concerning the Lockerbie bombing differs from those in the military and intelligence services.