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Failure is not an option

Sykes Group Protective Services Bulletin
March 2013
In The News
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Learn Your Weak Skill, Then Fix It

One of the best personality-based questions to ask an officer hoping to promote to the next rank is, "What is your greatest weakness as a law enforcement officer?" The follow-up question is, "What are you doing to address this?"

At promotional tests, this question is asked to see if you have the ability to know your weakness and the courage to admit to it. After this, what are you doing to prevent this from harming your performance? Some of the quick-witted ones will say that more

Fire: The Overlooked Threat

People sometimes obsess over the potential threat posed by terrorist attacks that use things such as chemical weapons, electromagnetic pulses or dirty bombs. Yet they tend to discount the less exciting but very real threat posed by fire, even though fire kills thousands of people every year. The World Health Organization estimates that 195,000 people die each year from fire, while according to the Global Terrorism Database an average of 7,258 people die annually from terrorism, and that includes deaths in conflict zones such as Afghanistan and Iraq.

There are also instances in which fire more

You Want ME to Search for a Bomb?

The policy of many organizations, in response to a bomb threat call, is immediate evacuation, especially in a location that is open to the general public. There may be instances where evacuation is the best decision, but in the majority of cases, an emergency evacuation may actually put untrained personnel and visitors at greater risk.

Consider the facts regarding bomb threats, actual detonations, and injuries. Almost never are actual bomb detonations preceded by an alert; wherein the bomber gives advance notice.

Weighed against the actual statistics of injuries suffered during chaotic evacuations, more often, the safest option more

You Said What?

One of the first things that becomes apparent when I review dash cam footage of incidents is how much vulgarity spurts out of our little brains under stress. It has long been said the last two words on the black box recorder from crashed aircraft are "Oh shit!" and after observing hundreds of high stress moments on video, I know crime fighters blurt out their fair share of expletives. Why? I mean, we know it looks bad, is often against policy, and can certainly make the courtroom an embarrassing place to testify, so why do we do it?

According to Harvard's Dr. Steven Pinker, taboo words are linked deep inside our brains, closer to our emotional centers than to our rational language centers. Therefore these words have remarkable emotional power in conversation. You can't read or hear one of these words—usually related to bodily functions, or religious images or figures—without an emotional response of some kind, whether negative or just intense.

The existence of taboo words is universal, but ironically the words themselves more

20 Things You Need to Know About Night Vision

Night vision has become an essential tool for the U.S. military. Pilots fly fighter planes and helicopters with night vision devices. Soldiers on the ground in Afghanistan use night vision goggles to spot and eliminate Taliban insurgents. Even unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) have the latest thermal cameras.

Such tools are less ubiquitous in law enforcement, but as prices fall, they are becoming more common. Yet many law enforcement officers are still confused about what night vision can and can't do and what they need to know before buying it.

1. What Should I Call It?

One of the most confusing things about night vision is what to call the stuff. There are two primary types: more

Lebanon: Lessons from Two Assassinations

On Oct. 19, Lebanese Brig. Gen. Wissam al-Hassan was assassinated on a narrow side street near Sassine Square in downtown Beirut. The attack involved the detonation of a moderately sized vehicle-borne improvised explosive device as al-Hassan's car passed by the vehicle in which the device was hidden. The explosion killed not only al-Hassan and his driver but also six other people and wounded about 90 more.

Al-Hassan, the intelligence chief for Lebanon's Internal Security Forces, had been a marked man for some time prior to his death. He was the security chief for former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik al-Hariri, who was assassinated in February 2005 in an attack that most believe was conducted by the Syrian regime and its allies in Lebanon.

But more recently, as Stratfor noted in February 2012, al-Hassan played a critical role channeling support from the Gulf states and the West to the Syrian rebels through Lebanon. This involved smuggling arms from Lebanon to Syria destined for opposition forces, providing a haven for Syrian defectors in Lebanon and allowing Syrian rebels to use Lebanese territory as a staging ground for attacks in Syria. His part in the Syrian opposition movement clearly made him a prime target for Syrian intelligence and indeed the Syrian regime had previously attempted to assassinate al-Hassan -- one such plot was thwarted in early 2012 by Jordanian intelligence, which caught wind of the plot and passed a warning to Lebanese authorities.

Al-Hassan was doing dangerous work in a dangerous place, and he knew he was a marked man. His former boss had been assassinated and there were plots afoot to kill him, too. Due to the manner in which al-Hariri was assassinated, al-Hassan decided to employ a very different style of security -- low-profile security instead of the high-profile measures employed by al-Hariri -- and yet he was killed despite his different approach.

This failure does not mean more

Sykes Group Training

"You are not paid for what you do, you are paid for what you may have to do, and when that time comes, you will be highly underpaid." - Unknown

See course schedule here

We sleep safely in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would harm us. - George Orwell

1 Day High Risk Building Entry & Search Techniques course
in New York City, Saturday, March 23, 2013

Next 5 day Executive/VIP Protection course
in New York City starts April 22, 2013

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Failure is not an option!

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M3 Report

The National Association of Former Border Patrol Officers (NAFBPO) extracts and condenses the material that follows from Mexican and Central and South American on-line media sources on a daily basis. You are free to disseminate this information, but we request that you credit NAFBPO as being the provider....learn more

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Sykes Group LLC
Sykes Group LLC
Law Enforcement/Security Training & Consulting
P.O. BOX 50309
S.I., NY 10305 – USA

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