War Hero
Private security firms operating in Iraq are committing human rights abuses, a charity has claimed.

This one is an interesting read. I can state from personal experience that many of these guys are a [email protected] nuisance - they drive around in heavily up-armoured vehicles with large calibre weapons mounted fore and aft and will drive right at you if you don't get out of the way quickly. I've nearly been run over once and was in a car driven by a Commander who had to reverse about 200m at speed to get out of their way because they decided to drive the wrong way up a one way system.

If they are willing to behave like this with Coalition Forces then God only knows how they behave with the locals. I have also heard stories of them ramming vehicles and pushing them out of the way without provocation - simply because the drivers do not give them right of way.

Because we're so short-handed these firms are a necessity. What I hadn't realised is that a large part of them work for the military and act as perimeter security, search teams, etc. I do not doubt their ability or trustworthiness; however their methods are sometimes very questionable. This behaviour makes our job much more difficult. How we can ever win over the Iraqi people whilst these guys are allowed to carry on without redress for their actions.



Lantern Swinger

He comes out with some pretty strong statements such as

"I can state from personal experience that many of these guys are a [email protected] nuisance "

His only "experience" appears to be a half arrsed dit, in which makes little sense and basically adds up to a minor traffic violation


"I have also heard stories of them ramming vehicles and pushing them out of the way without provocation - simply because the drivers do not give them right of way."

actually admits to hearing stories

Being "in the sand" or "In a very hot place" does not give one carte blanche to make sweeping, generalised BS statements

Especially when what triggers such statements is a story harvested from a report presented by an organisation with such a highly political agenda

Do not make the mistake of believing geographical location = Indepth knowledge of situation

Galley queue warriors and passengers are far and wide in all theatres

I flamed this BS last night but after a good scran I felt better about the world and edited it out of existence

Your are currently receiving a toned down version.



War Hero
Gimp, me ould flower. Sadly the answer is yes I do know what I am talking about. I considered writing a long winded response which would be mildly patronising to you but had a re-think because at the end of the day that would probably be counter productive. Then again, here it is anyway.

I believed that the news article, complemented by my own words, would be clear enough. Indeed this appears to be the case from reading the few comments (other than your own) that have been made. My intention was to stimulate debate and it appears that I have been successful. Well done and thank you.

Whilst I don’t normally like to hide behind the heading of OPSEC, I will necessarily have to use it to a certain degree here. I am one of a small contingent of UK servicemen posted well outside the Green (International) Zone of Baghdad. It’s a wonderful place and the locals try to keep us in their thoughts on a daily (twice at weekends) basis which is a lot of fun as you can imagine … or can you? I also get to make the trip to Disneyland, er ... I mean Baghdad Central, on a regular basis to conduct a little business and see how the other half live.

I have daily first hand experience of Private Security Firms operating on this site and I have the opportunity to see many other firms at work in the Baghdad area during my visits. On top of this we get a lot of Iraqi / CF Military visitors & ViPs to our little piece of paradise who come mob-handed in terms of PSD’s and other dodgy looking bandit types. I see how they operate and can easily compare them and, whilst not all companies are poor operators, too many are and I witness their actions regularly. The “traffic incident†as you call it is just one example but there are plenty of others which involve the very minor to the very serious where hundreds of rounds were expended in the general direction of where some bad guys might have been 10 minutes before. Again, my own personal experience!!

I suppose it is appropriate to mention that I have over 20 years in and, whilst this is my first OPTOUR, I have gained enough experience through it to last me a lifetime; I certainly will not be volunteering for another. Whilst I can’t begin to compare my own experiences to the boys and girls fighting the Taliban in Afghanistan or in the south of this blessed place, I can confirm that I have been under direct and indirect fire more times than you have probably wipe your rear end in the last four months.

The example given earlier was my own but I have many other shared experiences with my fellow servicemen here. However the real issue for debate is the accountability of private security firms. As I said not all companies are behaving badly, but enough of them are and every time they shunt a civilian car out of the way, drive at speed towards some lady with her shopping because she is too slow to cross the road or force a UK Mil vehicle to reverse at speed to avoid head on collision does absolutely nothing to endear them to the wider population or the foreign military personnel serving out here. Frankly it is amazing that rival firms have avoided shooting it out with each other over right of way. Yet the Iraqi Police, Military, Government AND other foreign authorities can’t or won’t do much to call them to account.

I repeat my earlier comment that these guys ARE a ******* nuisance. They are funded by governments to make up for the lack of professional soldiers on the ground and whilst there are guidelines for their behaviour, they are not always brought to account from their infringements. This is something which needs to be reviewed and remedied.

Being accused of being a “Galley Queue Warrior†was amusing. We don’t get many laughs out here so thanks. The other guys here laughed too … at first, but then they actually wanted to kill you … imagine that! No need to worry though, as a member of RR I stood up for your right to make these comments. Incidentally I have never claimed the status of warrior – I am simply not that brave.

Regrettably I was unable to come to the phone when you made your [now edited] posting so I can’t comment on what was included in it. The fact that you edited & rehashed it has denied me an opportunity to respond to whatever has been removed so any character aspersions, etc will have to go unanswered. In fairness though, I probably couldn’t be bothered to do this again, but next time? – don’t be so shy! Stand by whatever your comments are. I am thick-skinned enough to bear it – honest.

What is interesting about all of this is that you haven’t clarified your own interest in the subject. To me it appears that you have a little beef with it. Are you serving? Have you been in theatre? Do you have personal experience of the insurgency, PDS’s etc. Perhaps you are a PSD yourself and don’t like the thought that someone thinks bad of you or maybe you have yet to make the grade of “Galley Queue Warrior†yourself? I’ve declared my interest. Honestly mate it seems only fair that you do likewise.

To the other members of RR – my apologies for taking up air time. Normal service should be resumed once the gimp rejoins us.



War Hero
Would say that our man S.F does indeed know what he's talking about. Insecurity is a terrible thing isn't it? Keep your head down over there today mucker as i'm interested in the reply from Gimp-boy!!


Lantern Swinger
Excellent post

You've stated your position on the subject and backed it up with some decent information

As opposed to blarting off a load of half arrsed bollocks,

all very well playing to the cheapseats and civvies and dumbing it down but it annoys the feck out of me (can't talk for anyone else)

undoubtably you will argue that due to operational tempo you don't have the time to get on the internet and knock out a thesis per post.

Opsec permitting I'm sure the forum would appreciate and be interested in your experiences, as opposed to the "one day in band camp" style of your initial post

I visit RR occasionally and alway leave dissapointed with the content of the forum I still live in hope

As for

your incoming:my arrse wiping ratio

Yep I've had a quiet four months, however I've cracked three Iraq holidays North and south and an excellent stint in the stan with the UN (deep joy)

I am aquainted with the two way range (including some from our colonial cousins) and the thump whoosh disco beat of IDF.

Keep posting the good stuff,


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