War Hero
You bite easy though mate!! "taking potshots from the rear of the pack" Nice!! Wasn't a REMF mate, As for gobbing off Re "the Stan" and North and South Iraq it doesn't give a very comprehensive answer to our man silver fox does it? OPSEC or no OPSEC!!


Lantern Swinger
Not suggesting you are a REMF, referring to you nipping in for a quick poke while you think a mans on the back foot.

As for the the rest thats all you'll get

If Silver fox requires anymore information I'm sure he doesn't require you nipping at my heels to get it

Right off for a nightcap



War Hero
Enjoy your nightcap!! Good skills "Grefs" like it!!
I'm sure Messr Fox can fight his own corner fine and dandy. However. Seeing as he is off fighting the fuzzy-wuzzies somewhere......."they dont like it up em Capt Manwaring" and your so bloody opinionated i thought i'd carry it on.


Broad brush people, there's still a lot of money sloshing around in the pot put aside for rebuilding the infrastructure, it filters down from Capitol Hill to the main players like The Washington Group (Black Water Etc) ending up at the sharp end sub-contractors, mainly U.S./Brit.

Yes of course you will get "undesirables" that slip through the net (look around you, are you "knobber free"?) no system is perfect and never will be)
There was a problem with a company called "Custer Battles" (with a name like that....'nuff said) and various other companies singing from the same hymn sheet, U.K. companies are run predominantly by ex brit forces (mainly the officer class) and as such will recruit accordingly ie U.K. operators (99.9% former servicemen) why? (look around you again) they are from the same known quality-tried and tested training grounds as themselves, so if anyone wants to discuss the reality of the place we all know as the pit, let's keep it truthful and balanced because we are all losing people (I include the non combatant Iraqi's in "all"-there are no winners) and the Grim Reaper does not recognise or distinguish one man, woman or child from another.

So the men that you were serving with in another time and place, those same men you drank with and ran'ashore with some how changed into people you don't know anymore?, changed their s.o.p's to suit the civi 4x4's, clothes and body armour? well believe it or not the very training/combat experience and scars earned for Queen and country are what makes it all work, it's just supply and demand, call them merc's if it makes you feel better, they get paid and are contracted/sub-contracted by Washington (even have D.O.D. cards)-same people folks.

As above, show me an organisation where rogue elements in a pretty much lawless state of anarchy don't exsist! look at the antics of various U.S. forces, I whitnessed first hand all of the things Mr Fox aludes to, they were perpetuated by elements of uncle Sam (2 wrongs don't make a right) 3 of our people did not walk away (1 killed-cut in half by 50 cal and 2 maimed)-unaccountable no U.S. charged not even an appology-this was and is not an isolated incident, erratic driving? time to get real here, it's called self preservation-I have worked for psd's where we drove our own vehicles- and psd's that used Iraqi nationals, we all do the same thing, drive the same way, it has to be erratic, it's not arrogance, it's just Iraq.

When we did what we did in that country on Telic war phase, I experienced (along with a great many of you lot) a sense of gratitude from everyone I met in the "liberated" southern sector (remember drinking that sweet chai with them?), in late 2003 I was back, working in Baghdad (orange C.P.A. pass-armed un-escorted, for those that remember) I did not like what I saw, I could see we were (even then, befor the various prisoner/inmates debacle) losing the initiative, care of an abusive/arrogant section of uncle Sam's finest doing their damndest to prove themselves as an occupying force (the famous Col Collins "We come as liberators" speach was an alien concept on the Humvee dwellers-never saw a full on foot patrol less than a few yards from wheeled armour), so for people who even think there is a "hearts and minds" concept, think again, it's long gone, (being among the first to discard my helmet and body armour and don my beret to persue that cause I do not say that lightly)

Later in 2004 I was back for the elections, the status quo on our presence was changing, the ripple effect from the north was tangible, we were now one step behind the north-tolerated but reasonably stable, 3 further tours down the road and we are in the same situ as our U.S. cousins-in a place that wishes we were'nt there but seeing us as the least worst option (for now)

Is there an element of envy? blokes doing a similar task for more money, out of uniform, no visible rank structure (did I mention more money?) well let's think about it, the average pay for a psd bod is around £275 a day (some on more some on less-many now taking cuts to around £225) that's a lot of money compared to a marine (£56ish), the human animal in us generally reacts, we all think of MP's and the wage rises they give themselves-gets you doesn't it? It's a life choice that people take, if you want to run up to Mosul from Basra in a soft skin with no chance of a QRF, cassivac, resupply or reinforcements to call on you have the choice, with the money comes a risk. (frankly both sums are not enough)

Remember this these blokes were pretty good at what they did when drawing the Queens shilling (R.M. S.B.S. Para, S.A.S. frontline infantry) if you think that because they wear civi clothes and work out of area in civi 4x4's they some how change their sop's (the very skills that keep them alive and at the top of the game) think again, change? what would be the point?

In the last three weeks Aegis have lost 3 people, HART Group have lost 7
(you will have to search hard and long to find psd casualty figures-it's one of the reasons the U.S. likes to use psd's-not so damaging to see civis in bodybags esp from another nation)

Think on lads, it's one of the oldest professions, alongside the prostitute (both similar in most repects!) the soldier of fortune will always ply his trade and be rewarded (to the chagrin of the regular soldier) substantially more for doing so, but do not tar him with such a broad brush-he's the same bloke you trained with, drank with and shared dits with, he earns his money and you are welcome to participate in that bounty, dig out, it's your choice.

Let's not make this a points scoring debate between psd's and mil.

This thread in memory of Seb and Mornay who were both killed this week in different contacts in the north and south of Iraq. (all the money in the world's no good if you can't go home to spend it)


War Hero
Point taken H.M
As you said, you can't tar everyone with the same grubby brush. As for self-preservation, i wouldn't do your job for any amount of money. Then again i do a job which entails poor pay, no body armour and abusive locals too!! S.O.P's include not getting out of my vehicle without my rather large maglight to fend off drunken knobbers!!
keep safe down there mucker.


War Hero
My point was about some, not all, companies. My limited experiences of dealing with the ex HMF personnel has always been excellent but unfortunately they tend to be in the minority round here as the South Americans, Lebanese, etc are far cheaper and yes, you do get what you pay for.