Archive for category Nepal

Afghanistan: Four Nepalese Guards Killed While Defending UN Compound Against Taliban Manufactured Riot Attack

Thanks to Carmen for sending me this story. I call this a ‘riot attack’ because it is an excellent way of getting close to your target, and masking your movements within the sea of protesters. And as the protesters are angered and riled up by some key agent provocateurs in the crowd, the attack elements can do their thing. The added benefit is that the crowd will follow the attackers into the compound and help in the killing and destruction.  Which is exactly what happened with this protest/riot attack.

Might I add that the Terry Jones quran burning deal happened several weeks ago, and the UN had nothing to do with the act.  Why not attack the US bases or consulates, because Jones is an American? And why show anger over just this one idiot who burned a book?  There are plenty of religious nut jobs out there that have been burning Qurans left and right, to include even the Westboro Baptist Church.  I did a search on Youtube the other day and I was blown away by how many folks across the world were burning Qurans out of protest against these intolerant and extremist elements of Islam. Muslims could have a field day with protests, and yet Terry Jones is the dork they use? Like I said, this is manufactured.

I bet the imams in the mosques who are working for the Taliban, have been telling everyone that Jones is a huge religious leader in the US? That is just not the case in reality, and you will notice that the media purposely ignores Jones. And yet these religious leaders in Afghanistan think he is significant? These groups manufactured this protest, and played upon the ignorance of the Afghan people who naturally believed everything they had to say about the matter. Is there not a voice of reason to counter such things in these mosques and town squares? I would say not, which makes using crowds as a weapon feasible.

So what does that mean for security specialists working in the war zones? (I wrote about this last year) It is just one more attack to study and be aware of in your particular area of operations.  Now with uprising and protests popping up all over the middle east, the chances of this kind of attack will continue through the spring and summer. I would say that any protest that develops, will always have the enemy floating around in it and looking for ways of firing up the crowd.  The key here is to identify folks in your ranks that have experience with riot control, like law enforcement types, and draw upon their knowledge to formulate a plan in the defense. A good study would be this last attack, and the attack on Dyncorp contractors last year.

Another thing that I was thinking about the other day is crowd control measures that contractors could use in these types of scenarios. I asked one buddy of mine who was a cop if he had any ideas, and in prime ‘Gorilla Warfare'(Pete Blaber)/Building Snowmobiles (Boyd) fashion, he said use snakes. In India, the cops used non-poisonous snakes as a crowd dispersion tactic to clear out people, and he said it worked like a charm. No chemical agents, no physical baton use–just release hundreds of snakes into a crowd. The crowd quickly switched gears and decided that running away from snakes was far more important than protesting whatever it was they were protesting. So the lesson here is that any less than lethal method, no matter how crazy, should be looked at as a way of dispersing a crowd and defeating the riot attack.

It also takes planning and talking it up amongst each other at your particular job site. Get your QRF’s in order, and insure communications protocols and response protocols are all hammered out and working properly.  You want to make sure that when there is trouble, you can depend upon a ‘cavalry’.  But until that response force comes, you should have a defense and plan that can hold it’s own until they come.  You must have a good learning organization and a leadership that cares about doing things right in order to create a defensive plan that works. Also remember that if your guards are allowed to contribute ideas to the SOP’s, that they will be much more comfortable and supportive of implementing them. People will support what they help to create… I certainly hope the Nepalese were not just blindly following whatever plan they were given?

Another thing to think about is that you could also use the crowd as a means of attacking the enemy. The riot attack is not just a tool of the Taliban, and if the crowd is this easily manipulated in Afghanistan, then this could be one way of striking back. The key to success is to copy what it is they are doing in the various regions, and add one or two little things to the scheme that make it that much better. It is not good enough to just borrow the brilliance of your enemy, but to add to that scheme the things that will give you an edge over the enemy. Mimicry strategy, all the way…

Rest in peace to the fallen, and it sounds like these brave Nepalese guards had quite the fight on their hands. I do not know if their company is IDG Security Limited or not, but the UN does have a history of using Nepalese security contractors in Afghanistan. My heart goes out to the other fallen in this incident as well, and I certainly hope the UN will be steadfast in their mission in Afghanistan after this tragedy. The enemy wins, when groups like the UN give up and leave because of these attacks. -Matt

12 killed in Afghanistan amid protests over reported Quran burning
April 1, 2011
Twelve people were killed Friday in an attack on a U.N. compound in northern Afghanistan that followed a demonstration against the reported burning last month of a Quran in Florida, authorities said.
The fatalities comprised seven U.N. workers and five demonstrators, officials said.
Another 24 people were wounded, said Abdul Rauof Taj, security director of Balkh province.
Lal Mohammad Ahmadzai, a spokesman for the police in Mazar-e-Sharif, told reporters that a number of suspects “who might be the main organizers” had been arrested. Read the rest of this entry »

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India: India’s Maoist Menace

“We do not have the forces to move into areas occupied by the rebels,” Home Secretary Gopal K. Pillai told India’s Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses in March, according to media reports. “We have a long, bloody war ahead. It is going to be a long haul, and I see violence going to go up.” Pillai declined to comment for this story.

Home Minister Palaniappan Chidambaram told chief ministers of Maoist-hit states on July 14 that the federal government will strengthen security forces and provide better roads, schools and health care in areas where Maoists operate. Maoists have some degree of influence in 220 of the nation’s 626 districts, the government estimates.

India’s failure to defuse the conflict is another setback as it struggles to become a Western-style power. The nation must spend $1 trillion to improve living standards and infrastructure from 2012 to 2017 for its $1.2 trillion economy to grow at close to 10 percent, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said on March 23. Growth has averaged 8.5 percent a year in the past five years. 

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     I want to thank one of my readers for sending me some scoop on the situation in India. He had sent me an article from the Economist originally, and I went into research mode due to how interesting this conflict was.  This article from Bloomberg was a little better, and very extensive, so I will put this one up.  Both articles cover the same subject.

     The areas that I like to look at with conflicts, is the position of the insurgency and what economic forces are at play.  Specifically, resources that are at stake which could significantly help out a country.  Especially if that country’s success will positively help out the free world, and help to provide some balance in the global economy (China needs more competition to keep it in check). India is a democracy, and I sure would like to see it succeed as a democracy. I am no fan of Maoists and the communist game plan, and what they are doing in India and places like Nepal are troubling.

    The other thing my reader mentioned, which kind of falls in line with the market of force principles I was talking about earlier, is why do we continue to send money to countries and not offer the services of PMC’s?  If India does not have the manpower or COIN capability, then why are we sending money to them so they can somehow ‘re-invent the wheel’ of counter-insurgency?  Why not tell them ‘hey, we will help you out, but because we do not have troops to spare, we will send PMC’s’? At least with that arrangement, the money we give to India would instead be going into the pockets of our own companies who would be assisting India in their fight against Maoists.

    The best analogy I have for this, is that if you see a homeless man on the street, is it smarter to give them money, or give them an assistant who can clean them up and teach them to fend for themselves? Feed a man a fish, and you feed them for a day, teach them how to fish, and you feed them for life. So the saying goes.

    We could be sending companies who can teach the latest counter-insurgency methods and strategies, or even tap into our market of force that is certainly experienced in dealing with insurgents in today’s wars. Companies could be contracted to clear, hold, and build districts that India has lost or is losing too the Maoists. The return on investment in contracting the services of a company to do this for India, would be far better than just throwing money at the ‘homeless man’. Isn’t India’s success within the free world’s best interest?

     Because as it stands now, the way the west throws around aid to places like Pakistan or even India seems to never offer a good return on investment. It’s as if we are giving money to that ‘homeless man’ so he can go buy booze with it. lol Besides, wouldn’t it be nice to actually put that money back into the pockets of those who would go back the US or UK, and spend it at home?  Is it better to feed them a fish, or teach these countries how to fish?

    I also look at how a vibrant steel/mining industry could actually help a government to help it’s citizens. From the jobs it would produce, to the infrastructure the government can improve on, to invigorating the pride of a nation because it is actually doing well. All of this is important for a country to evolve and do well, and especially during a global recession.  It does not evolve or do well, when a country is limited by an ideology that a few seem to think is the path. Might I also add that the drug cartels, al qaeda, the taliban, al shabab are all using guerrilla warfare/modern insurgency/4th gen. warfare methods (which relies on much of what Mao thought up), and certainly these groups do not have any kind of moral superiority or world wide support for their cause. I mean who supports the Maoists in India or Nepal? lol

     Although I will put this out there for thought.  A government, no matter it’s design, must always seem like a good idea to it’s citizenry. If it is thought of as corrupt or ineffective, or they are not able to show progress and true security for the people, then they will be fighting an insurgency (whatever that might be) that will only increase in size and influence, and possibly become victorious. -Matt

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India’s Maoist Menace

By Mehul Srivastava

Jul 29, 2010

Armed rebels hold the Red Corridor, a region the size of Portugal, in their grip. The nation’s mineral wealth and 8.5 percent annual growth are at stake.

At the heart of the Bailadila Hills in central India lie 1.1 billion tons of raw ore so pure and plentiful that half a century after miners first hacked at it with pickaxes, it remains the richest, and one of the largest, iron deposits on the planet.

Essar Steel Ltd. built a plant near the hills in 2005 to turn the ore into a liquid. The Mumbai-based company, controlled by billionaire brothers Ravi and Shashi Ruia, added a 267- kilometer pipeline to pump the slurry to the east coast, where Essar makes steel.

Yet on this quiet June day, cobwebs hang on rusted pipes in the all-but-abandoned facility, Bloomberg Markets magazine reports in its September 2010 issue. Caretakers prepare to switch truck-size rock crushers out of their coma, rousing the machines for five minutes a month to ensure they still work.

Maoist rebels from the surrounding Dandakaranya forest armed with guns and explosives — and some wielding axes and bows and arrows — attacked the facility four times in little more than a year, officials at the now-mothballed plant say. They burned 54 trucks waiting at factory gates in April 2008 and damaged part of the slurry pipeline, the world’s second longest, in June 2009. Essar idled the plant that month.

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Afghanistan: U.N. Embraces Private Military Contractors

   Oh say it isn’t so? An actual article about the U.N. embracing Private Military Contractors? lol.  All I have to say is that I am flabbergasted.

   Now the rule of thumb here, is don’t be the typical customer and not care about what goes on with your contract or how it is written.  If you actually care about the quality of the product, then hold the company you are contracting with to the standard written in the contract.  It takes leadership, and I highly suggest using your powers of firing people or defaulting the contract, and get the service you want.  Don’t do like the State Department, and look the other way while a company does a completely crappy job or embarrasses them.  And don’t go cheap, because you get what you pay for in this industry–learn from everyone else’s mistakes and you will do well.

   As to the companies involved with providing these security services to the U.N., all eyes are on you. The media and myself will be all over you, if you screw it up.  If you apply Jundism to your contract, and just ensure that the U.N. gets good quality customer service and satisfaction, then you will do just fine.

  By the way, I hope the author of this article, and the U.N. for that matter, understands that more than likely they are not getting all Royal Gurkha Rifles.  They are probably getting Nepalese guards(former army and police), with maybe a few RGR’s mixed in. It would be like calling a bunch of U.S. mall guards, Green Berets. The Gurkha or RGR’s are Nepalese/British special forces, and it is disrespectful to those who really are Gurkha to confuse them with the regular guards. It’s a pet peeve of mine, because everyone that talks about the Gurkha usually have in mind the kick ass dudes that protect Madonna or the Sultan of Brunei, and that just isn’t the case. -Matt

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Lil John

U.N. embraces private military contractors

By Colum Lynch

Sunday, January 17, 2010

For years, the U.N.’s top peacekeepers have been among the world’s staunchest critics of private security contractors, often portraying them as unaccountable mercenaries.

Now they are clients.

As the U.N. prepares to expand its operations in Afghanistan, it is in talks with a British security firm to send in scores of additional Nepalese Gurkhas to the country to protect them.

The U.N.’s top security official, Gregory Starr, the former head of U.S. State Department Security, has also been advocating an increase in the use of private security firms in Pakistan, where U.N. relief workers have been the target of kidnappings and killings, according to U.N. officials.

The embrace of a private security contractor marks a shift for the United Nations, which has relied on governments to supply peacekeepers to protect U.N. staff. In Iraq, the U.N. used a contingent of Fijian peacekeepers for protection. But it has accelerated its move toward hired guns in Pakistan since the Taliban launched an October attack against a U.N. residence, killing five U.N. employees, including two Afghan security guards, and triggered the withdrawal of U.N. personnel from the country.

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