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Democrats: Unprepared Blackwater team provoked Fallujah battle

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WASHINGTON (AP) -- A U.S. House committee says North Carolina-based Blackwater USA didn't adequately prepare or supply its contractors before sending them on a fatal mission through Iraq in 2004.

The Committee on Oversight and Government Reform says the incident raises "serious questions" about using private contractors in a war zone.

The March 2004 incident involving Blackwater was widely viewed as a turning point in the Iraq war after images of the mutilated bodies of the four guards were seen around the world. Four days after the Blackwater guards were killed, the U.S. military launched a major siege against the city of Fallujah.

Blackwater spokeswoman Anne Tyrrell says the report is a "one-sided version" of a tragic incident.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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