Sunday, 24 November 2013

US PMSC Operatives Observed at Boston Marathon Incident

Although published in April of this year, I have wanted to publish my thoughts on this for a while.
On line media websites have published articles and photographs showing what appears to be PMSCs from Craft International working alongside the Boston Marathon event organisers, local police as well as the FBI Bomb Squad.  Individuals in PMSC style clothing and wearing baseball caps and clothing showing the Craft International Ltd Logo of a skull, are shown observing the crowd as well as carrying what appears to be hand held radiation level detector.
However this story is being reported from a number of differing angles, ranging from the PMSCs were hired by the City of Boston as Private Security in support of local law enforcement; to the conspiracy theory of Hired Mercenaries being seen at the scene of the Boston Bombing, carrying backpacks just like the alleged bombers, and being seen to be standing near the location of the bomb moments before the explosion.
After reading some of these articles and trying to make a logical and balance decision from information available in the press and on line, I came to the following conclusions:
1.       I do not think there is anything wrong with PMSCs working alongside event organisers and local police units, as long as their staff are trained and competent. PMSCs offer experienced Operatives trained in specialist skills including emergency response teams, which local forces cannot afford to maintain in house due to financial and personnel constraints.
2.       If PMSCs wanted to plant a bomb at the Boston Marathon do you think that they would plant the bomb wearing clothing which has their company logo displayed?
It is good to see that American city officials are showing the insight to strengthen the abilities of the police and event organisers with PMSCs, which enable skilled personnel provide specialist skills to be utilised on an as and when basis to help control risks and protect civilians.  Thus ensuring that ex service personnel have the ability to develop a second career based on their skills they have learnt in the service of their country.
One observation which should be brought on board, especially for UK PMSCs, is the importance of company logos.  Having a skull or similar images for your company logo does not necessarily portray the right image to enhance public confidence or support for the company especially when working in environments which PMSCs do.
Please keep the ego of the US Military and Special Forces out of the industry.  Take a leaf out of the UK Military and UK Special Forces Community, learnt from years of experience – ‘low profile is best’.


Wednesday, 6 November 2013

Remembrance 2013

This is the time of year where we remember the sacfrices made by the UK Armed Forces within conflicts past and present.
This is the time to stop, reflect and remember those who have served and who are currently serving, the injured, the fallen and the familes of all these personnel.
As poppies fall and buglers play the Last Post and Reveille over different time zones, let us fall silent and pay our respects to the UK Armed Forces past and present.

"They shall not grow old, as we that are left grow old.  Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.  At the going do of the sun, and in the morning We will remember them."

November 2013 - Those who have served.
While attending and particpating in a Remembrance Service this morning, my thoughts also went to the Men and Women who have left the UK Armed Forces and who are now serving in PMSC's in countries world wide, away from their families, providing services which include the protection of members of Governments, NGOs, Aid Agency's etc.  These men and women are being alienated as 'Mercenaries' which I believe is fastly inaccurate and undermines the importance of the work that they provide as well as how vital their services are to Governments, NGOs and their infrastructure.

Thus the challenge has been laid down to PMSC Top Management, who I believe have a responsibility to ensure effective management controls for the protection of their personnel but also that these controls are proactively managed to help ensure that their personnel are trained, competent and act in such a manner as to strengthen the reputation of this fastly growing industry. A growth that will enable us, one day, to remember the sacrifices of PMSC Personnel, ex-service personnel, who although being paid, are still contributing to help, build, deliver, protect and guard world wide. 

"Teach us all good Lord to serve thee as thou deservest; to give and not to count the cost, to fight and not to heed the wounds; to toil and not to seek for rest; to labour and not to seek reward, save that of knowing we do Thy will; through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen."