About Me

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I saw active service in conventional, clandestine and covert units of the South African Defence Force. I was the founder of the Private Military Company (PMC) Executive Outcomes in 1989 and its chairman until I left in 1997. Until its closure in 1998, EO operated primarily in Africa helping African governments that had been abandoned by the West and were facing threats from insurgencies, terrorism and organised crime. EO also operated in South America and the Far East. I believe that only Africans (Black and White) can truly solve Africa’s problems. I was appointed Chairman of STTEP International in 2009 and also lecture at military colleges and universities in Africa on defence, intelligence and security issues. Prior to the STTEP International appointment, I served as an independent politico-military advisor to several African governments. Until recently, I was a contributing editor to The Counter Terrorist magazine. All comments in line with the topics on this blog are welcome. As I consider this to be a serious look at military and security matters, foul language and political or religious debates will not be entertained on this blog.

Friday, December 20, 2013

LAST POST FOR 2013


2013 was a year filled with adrenalin rushes, expectations, waiting, laughter, happiness, satisfaction, highs and lows, cheap airlines, rundown airports, meetings, proposals, headshaking, briefings, presentations, bad food, terrible water, long hours, little sleep and some blood, sweat and tears is nearing its end.

Like so many people, I also had my share of sadness this past year. Fortunately, I have also been able to meet with some really good folks north of our border and I truly enjoy that part of my work.

There has been much to laugh about and equally much to shake our heads about as well. Unfortunately, some not-so-good folks have been disrupting both my blog and my LinkedIn Account. As they say – small things amuse small minds. Sadly though, there are no tablets for stupidity. Trials and tribulations will always be there but it is not the fire we walk through that counts but rather how we walk through it.

Thank you to everyone who read and contributed to the blog throughout the year. Your comments are always appreciated and highly valued as they give me insight and allow me to broaden my own knowledge base.

To everyone who is far from home at this time, and to those who are deployed in the conflict zones around the world, beit as soldiers, sailors, airmen, law enforcement officers, spooks or PMC contractors, keep your heads down, your eyes peeled, your weapons close at hand, stay safe and be ready to do what needs to be done.

Let us also remember those who will not be able to be share this time with those they hold dear as well as those who have lost friends and loved ones. They should never be forgotten. Nor should the sacrifices they have made ever be forgotten.

I would also like to wish each and every visitor to the blog a blessed festive season. To those who celebrate the meaning of Christmas, I wish you and your families a blessed, happy and joyous festive season.

To those who do not celebrate Christmas for whatever reason – along with my Muslim friends - I wish you all a time of happiness and peace with your families and friends.

I would also like to wish each and every one of you – and your loved ones - a great 2014. May the coming year be filled with good health, happiness and safety.

‘Till next year.

17 comments:

Herbert said...

Eeben,

Your post is a good message. Our blessings are abundant if we take the time to see them--as you imply. As for the small people with small minds pursuing small endeavors, better that than their doing harm in something really important.

Bless you for always remembering those who have departed before us.

Merry Christmas to you and yours and may you have a very happy and prosperous New Year.

Rgds,
Herbert

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

Thank you Herbert.

I always believe it is because of those who departed before us that we are able to do many of the things we take for granted.

Merry Christmas to you and yours and I likewise wish you and yours a very happy and prosperous 2014.

Rgds,

Eeben

jobcompany said...

Eeben ... I wish you a happy festive season, that 2014 brings you joy and happiness for you and your family ... I am happy to correspond with you, I have many regard for your career. greetings from France Merry Christmas Eeben and family......Erick Müller.

Daniel Bilbao said...

Hi Eeben,

I would like to express my admiration for your whole career, especially for your awesome company "Executive Outcomes". Right now I am reading your magnificent book.

I am about to embark working for a spanish MarSec company, in order to protect oil tankers through the Indian Ocean and the Red Sea.

Merry Christmas to you and yours and you have a happy New Year.

Greetings from the Basque Country, Spain. If you come to Spain ever, let me know, you have a home over here.

Daniel.

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

Many thanks for your kind wishes, Erick.

I wish you and your family a very Merry and Blessed Christmas and a very prosperous New Year. May everything that is good line your path.

Rgds,

Eeben

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

Many thanks for taking the time to read the book, Daniel.

I am sure that you will do a great job with your task at hand and that you and your team will give your client the best protection possible.

We loved Spain when we visited as we have friends there so many thanks for your kind invitation. It is very much appreciated.

Take care, stay safe and my family and I wish you a very Merry and blessed Christmas and a great 2014.

Rgds,

Eeben

Feral Jundi said...

Eeben,

Merry Christmas to you, your family and readership! Man, you have been writing some excellent stuff on the blog this last year and I look forward to the new year and the discussion about this industry.

Also, I got a chance to read through Prince's new book and in one of his chapters he discussed and praised the cost effectiveness and successes of EO in Sierra Leone. Pretty cool.

Take care. -Matt

graycladunits said...

Dear Eeben:

Did you get the email I sent you? You mentioned some folks causing you trouble on LinkedIn and I have had a gmail hacker lately myself. I thought I would check and see if it got through. The email just wished you a Merry Xmas etc. Perhaps you could do a post on how the intelligence community makes use of hacking/hackers' capabilities?

Thanks, GCU

C Rehill said...

The Umma would recognise Jesus (the Prophet Isa QSSL) so Happy Xmas is not going to annoy any Muslims. Happy New Year 2014/

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

Thanks for the kind wishes, Matt.

I must admit I continue to enjoy your blog and admire the hard work you put into it. Please keep it up

May 2014 be good for you.

Rgds,

Eeben

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

My problems continue to persist, GCU. Between a very inefficient national telecoms provider and those trying to block my site, I have my work cut out for me.

I didn’t receive your email so it must have got “lost” on someone else’s computer.

Many thanks for your kind wishes and may 2014 bring you much happiness.

Rgds,

Eeben

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

I know the Ummah recognise Jesus as a prophet, C Rehill. My message was not to not annoy any Muslims but merely to give good wishes to those who do not believe in Christmas as others do.

A Happy New Year to you as well.

Rgds,

Eeben

Bret said...

Sorry to bug, but do you expect the book to be published out in 2014 (if so, when)? Will it be accessible outside of SA?

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

You are certainly not bugging me, Bret and thank you for the interest.

The book has been written and is currently being proof read. I have however been approached by 2 African armies that want to use it as a text book along with one army from the East. If their wishes are turned into actions, then it will not be published at all but rather be sold to them for exclusive use.

Should they decide against the book, then I hope to have it out by end of the year. I know I have said this before but time and work distracted me from getting it done.

Rgds,

Eeben

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

I have been following your success with your novels on and off, Dan. Well done!!
Time has sadly been somewhat of an enemy to me as I have been otherwise engaged but hopefully I will have some time the coming weeks.
Keep up your good work and don’t stop writing.
Rgds,
Eeben

Mike h said...

I am truly impressed with the EO and their accomplishments. I guess I tend to be a bit right wing. I work with Veterans in the US daily. This is in a clinical setting and have told them about the documentary on the amazing work done in Sierra Leone in 1995. There are many that would like to see it but I can not find a complete version online. Any ideas?

Eeben Barlow's Milsec Blog said...

Thanks for your compliment Mike h.
Thank you too for the work you do with veterans. I am sure they are immensely appreciative as too often governments forget that their actions resulted in many mental and physical scars – and then forgot that the veterans were doing their bidding.
I am sorry but I am unaware of a comprehensive overview on EO’s work in either Sierra Leone or Angola. I am aware of some bits on YouTube but that is about it.
Sorry I cannot be of more help.
Good luck with your work.
Rgds,
Eeben