chapter  3
Martial Races and Enforcement Masculinities of the Global South: Weaponising Fijian, Chilean, and Salvadoran Postcoloniality in the Mercenary Sector
ByPaul Higate
Pages 18

ABSTRACT Set against the backdrop of the occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan, the private

militarised security industry has grown rapidly over the last decade. Its growth into a multi-

billion dollar enterprise has attracted the interest of scholars in international relations, legal

studies, political science, and security studies who have debated questions of regulation and

accountability, alongside the state’s control on the monopoly of violence. While these

contributions are to be welcomed, the absence of critical sociological approaches to the

industry and its predominantly male security contracting workforce has served to occlude the

gendered and racialised face of the private security sphere. These dimensions are important

since the industry has come increasingly to rely on masculine bodies from the global South in

the form of so-called third country and local national men. The involvement of these men is

constituted in and through the articulation of historical, neocolonial, neoliberal, and

militarising processes. These processes represent the focus of the current article in respect of

Fijian and Latin American security contractors. Their trajectories into the industry are

considered in respect of both ‘push’ and ‘pull’ factors, the likes of which differ in marked

ways for each group. Specifically, states and social groups in Fiji, Chile, and El Salvador are

appropriating what is described in the article as an ethnic bargain as one way in which to

make a contribution to the global security sector, or-in direct regard to the Latin American

context-to banish its more dangerous legacies from the domestic space. In conclusion, it is

argued that the use of these contractors by the industry represents a hitherto unacknowledged

gendered and racialised instance of the contemporary imperial moment.