War plc (Stephen Armstrong)

Discussion in 'The Book Club' started by SixBadges, Sep 28, 2008.

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  1. [​IMG]

    I have just finished this book and was not able to put it down - a thouroughly riveting read.

    War plc

    Armstrong starts by giving a history from the development of private security companies from the murky days of Bob Denard and David Stirling through to the Iran/Contra and Sandline affairs with a nod to Simon Mann.

    The bulk of the book is crammed full of personal stories from Iraq. The reader gets a pretty clear picture of who the proffesional players are, and who are the cowboys. The plot thickens with old tories such as Nicholas "Fatty" Soames and Sir Malcolm Rifkind playing a large role.

    The book tells of efforts to smarten up the industry, by bidding for contracts such as London 2012, and the specialisation into G2 (Diligence) and G4 (KBR) of some firms. The underlying feeling of the book, though, is the regret that there is no framework for the legal, contractual, or compensation side of this 'highly pervasive and rapidly expanding industry'. Hopefully, this G1 gap will be plugged by the BAPSC.

    Overall, a bloody good read for anyone interested in international security, and an essential read for anyone considering this line of work.
  2. I really liked it as well, balanced and with a realistic eye to the fact that for many future conflicts and humanitarian crisis’s PMC are the way forward.

    The only fault is that its not longer – another 100 pages please Mr Armstrong! I liked the fact that he covered the families when things went wrong, no other Journo has written about that to my knowledge.

    Well away from the usual ignorant leftie assessment.

    I'm with SixBadges when I say a must buy.
  3. I've bought this one but haven't got around to reading it beyond a very casual 'flip through' The initial pages explain the development of the UK agencies from KMS, Saladin, DSL (now Armour Gp) to Control Risks and the UK arm of Kroll. Most accurately described as well I would add.

    Should be read in conjunction with Bob Shepherd's 'The Circuit'
  4. Just finished 'The Circuit' now half way through War PLC. Both good reads thus far. Know a few lads from UK and South Africa working in Iraq at this time. Most reckon it is time to get out though. Iraq is going to the dogs. Could have predicted that a long time ago......

  5. Dear all
    Thank you for your comments on the book.
    It seems inappropriate to post here - being underqualified in very many ways. However.
    Following on from the book, I'm helping a TV crew look at how the companies treat wounded PSCs and the families of those unfortunate enough to be killed overseas.
    If anyone knew a friend or a family who have been shabbily treated and wanted to speak out I could leave you my contact details. I can also put you in touch with former PSCs from a number of regiments who can vouch for me.
    I know there's an understandable reluctance to talk to the media - I can only say that any anonymity will be respected. Some severe injustices have been done and people should know what's going on.
    Anyway, sorry for butting in. If you want to e-mail me at s-armstrong@btconnect.com it'll be treated in the strictest confidence.
    Thank you
  6. fek me a jorno with good manners, I think Mr Armstrong deserves me going to Waterstones this PM
  7. Indeed he does.

    Bought War PLC from Amazon a few weeks on the reviews there & its definetly worth a punt. Better, imo, than Blackwater in every way.

    Recommended for anyone with passing interest in PMC stuff.

  8. Very interesting now I've read it good read
  9. Mr Happy

    Mr Happy LE Moderator

    Good manners would have meant he'd have contacted me first before posting.. If we're being super strict here.

    Welcome Mr Armstrong, have a look around and don't believe half of what you read. There's more bull on this site than a years worth of red-tops..
  10. Biped

    Biped LE Book Reviewer

    :eek: tsk tsk - and you a boss and all! Fancy saying such a thing about your fellow ARRSE inmates!

    Going to get me this book and give it a read - was looking for something anyway having just read one stonking book on PMC's and one walt version. I've got Blackwater too, but it can wait.
  11. Nobody mention the plan to topple Brown...!
  12. Mr Happy

    Mr Happy LE Moderator

    i'VE JUST BE wading (sp?) through the bloody NAFFI bar, god that place..
  13. Sorry Mr H
    I contacted someone at the site - maybe you? - but not in good enough time. Thanks for keeping the post up there.
    And intrigued about the Brown plot - we've got our own one going in the media. Let's see who gets past the cenotaph first.