In the early days of ‘private contractor’ work in Iraq following the end of the war in 2003, medics were generally unregulated and unregistered, most being ex RMAs (now CMT1s) who had left the military and qualified as HSE Offshore Medics. Some had not done any ‘civilian’ courses but were hired on the strength of their military qualifications and experience; the guys would generally operate as firstly a PSD team member/operator, and secondly as a team medic. In those days the drugs and equipment carried by the medics was very limited; generally, FFDs, quick clot, blast bandages and if you were lucky some morphine auto injectors, Paracetamol and Ibuprofen.
I was a seventeen-year old military recruit when I was issued my first rifle. That marked the beginning of what would amount to nearly forty years of carrying firearms professionally. Twenty-three of those were in the military, including nearly twenty years with the SAS, followed by almost seventeen years of commercial security work.
You might be forgiven for thinking that a life on the frontline is exciting, even glamorous. And on occasion, it is. But for the most part, my job is nothing of the sort. It’s dangerous, it’s far from well paid, and it’s stressful. And I mean, stressful. Nothing focuses the mind more than the sight and sound of a guerrilla army and its arsenal of fully-automatic weapons. And nothing destroys the mind more than the sight of women, children and innocent civilians lying dead or dying at one’s feet.
Bodyguards at Australia’s embassy in Baghdad were told not to speculate about what occurred in a room where their colleague Chris Betts was fatally shot in 2016.
US foreign policy has been a dismal failure in the Region of today’s Greater Middle East. It has really had no end game at all, when we look at Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and now Syria.
The real subject matter experts in this field come from the military. Soldiers deployed to war & conflict zones are dealing with this threat on a daily basis. However, for the purpose of this article, let’s view the subject from the point view of an executive protection team. The knowledge gained through the examination of this threat will be particularly useful to RST teams (Residential Security Team), those charged with the guarding of critical infrastructure, and event security personnel.
My job is to look after my media team first and foremost. With the right mindset and approach, most of the time, this can be communicated to the military in a way that not only will they understand but also gets them onside.
It was mid December. Christmas decorations sparkled annoyingly in every shop window and on every street corner. Stupid looking Santas stood in shopping malls and on high streets ringing their irritating bells demanding money for some good cause or other, probably pocketing half of it themselves and spending the rest in the pub at the end of their shift.
Shiite extremists remaining in Baghdad have added a relatively new weapon to their arsenal in the fight against U.S. forces, one with more destructive power than most of the usual improvised explosive devices planted along city thoroughfares – the improvised rocket-assisted mortar.
On May 29, 2007, IT consultant Peter Moore and four bodyguards, all British ex-servicemen, were kidnapped in Iraq. During his years of imprisonment, Moore endured solitary confinement, mock executions, and the loss of his four colleagues. He was eventually freed in return for, and after, the release of two senior leaders of the Shia paramilitary group Asaib Ahl al-Haq, the brothers Qais and Laith al-Khazali.