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A Call To Speak, The Former Hostages

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  • alklloyd
    replied
    Re: A Call To Speak, The Former Hostages

    Ok, these guys just got home. How about we give them at least a year to get over their ordeal rather than inviting them to DC and putting them in the lockpicking village? Might prevent flashbacks.
    Just a thought.

    Al

    Leave a comment:


  • valanx
    replied
    Re: A Call To Speak, The Former Hostages

    I can see your view, I kind of took a little training as "dont eat that mushroom" rather than a timeframe.
    I've had a little training, like "learn to tread water".
    I'm not aware of any refresher training requirements for SERE, which I think would go a long way in knowledge retention. There could be, I just don't know.

    Either way, I'd go to see a speaker in another venue. I'm not sure about somewhere like defcon. Sobering talks don't mix with my schedule there.

    Leave a comment:


  • theprez98
    replied
    Re: A Call To Speak, The Former Hostages

    Originally posted by valanx View Post
    I'd consider SERE more than a little survival training. However, training works with conditioning, especially in a situation like that. Stressful situations have a great way of tossing all that training out of a window.
    SERE is great training, but it's only one week in the classroom and a second week outdoors. There is only so much time, and a hell of a lot of things to teach. I'd be hard-pressed to say I had "more than a little survival training."

    Leave a comment:


  • valanx
    replied
    Re: A Call To Speak, The Former Hostages

    Originally posted by barry99705 View Post
    Yea, if they were ex-military pilots, they should have had a little survival training.
    I'd consider SERE more than a little survival training. However, training works with conditioning, especially in a situation like that. Stressful situations have a great way of tossing all that training out of a window.

    I have known a few folks doing work in that region that are definitely not armed or remotely dangerous. Very intelligent, but not really a person you'd expect to go commando...
    er,not that commando.

    Leave a comment:


  • barry99705
    replied
    Re: A Call To Speak, The Former Hostages

    Originally posted by streaker69 View Post
    Hey, I saw Dr. Strangelove, them Airforce guys held off an entire division of Army Guys..
    I had more firearms training before middle school than I ever did in the AF.....

    Leave a comment:


  • streaker69
    replied
    Re: A Call To Speak, The Former Hostages

    Originally posted by barry99705 View Post
    Unless you're a cop in the AF you won't see a gun more than a few dozen times in your career. Even if deployed overseas to a place they don't like you that much you won't get a gun. The usual plan is to hand out guns if the base is getting over run(what's the chances of that working correctly). So basically your life is in the hands of the cops, most of whom went in open-general and who's test scores didn't show enough technical aptitude to get a maintenance or other technical aviation related job.
    Hey, I saw Dr. Strangelove, them Airforce guys held off an entire division of Army Guys..

    Leave a comment:


  • barry99705
    replied
    Re: A Call To Speak, The Former Hostages

    Originally posted by theprez98 View Post
    Your points are all well-taken, and I don't disagree with your comments in principle. However, assuming that all these types of guys are "professional soldiers" is a bit much--two were pilots, the third a former USAF imagery analyst. Sometimes contractors really are contractors, and not weapon-toting mercenaries. Heck, they were flying in a single-engine Cessna, hardly military hardware. That's not to say they're not doing "black" work, but it doesn't mean they're all Blackwater Rambo-types, either. I don't have access to any information that you don't--I'm just suggesting I think you may be over-glamorizing the nature of their work.

    To be relevant to the thread--I'd enjoy hearing them speak, but not at DEFCON. First, I don't think their talk would be all that relevant. Second, someone who was already accepted would risk being bumped. Third, I'm guessing there are a lot of people who wanted to speak but didn't get picked--it wouldn't be fair to people who spent a lot of time putting together a CFP to throw in marginally-relevant talks at the last minute, even considering their newsworthiness.
    Yea, if they were ex-military pilots, they should have had a little survival training. The AF imagery guy was screwed though. At the least he had his one day for M-16 training in basic, maybe a re-qual shoot every two years, depending on how long he was enlisted. I didn't read too much about this, so I don't know where the other guys were as far as military branches. Unless you're a cop in the AF you won't see a gun more than a few dozen times in your career. Even if deployed overseas to a place they don't like you that much you won't get a gun. The usual plan is to hand out guns if the base is getting over run(what's the chances of that working correctly). So basically your life is in the hands of the cops, most of whom went in open-general and who's test scores didn't show enough technical aptitude to get a maintenance or other technical aviation related job.

    Leave a comment:


  • jedi
    replied
    Re: A Call To Speak, The Former Hostages

    Originally posted by xor View Post
    I saw the CNN special presentation on the release of the former hostages.
    First I've heard this story. Link to the story for anyone else who missed it:

    http://mxp.blogs.cnn.com/2008/07/11/...ull-interview/


    Originally posted by theprez98 View Post
    To be relevant to the thread--I'd enjoy hearing them speak, but not at DEFCON. First, I don't think their talk would be all that relevant. Second, someone who was already accepted would risk being bumped. Third, I'm guessing there are a lot of people who wanted to speak but didn't get picked--it wouldn't be fair to people who spent a lot of time putting together a CFP to throw in marginally-relevant talks at the last minute, even considering their newsworthiness.
    Personally, I've got to agree. I'd love to buy these guys a beer and just talk to them about their experiences and the things they've missed out on in the last 5 years. But I think their experience and the story they can convey is a personal one. It's the kind of thing that you'd do in a one on one situation.

    Though if we could get them to vegas in time for defcon, I think they'd have a hell of a time.

    Leave a comment:


  • theprez98
    replied
    Re: A Call To Speak, The Former Hostages

    Originally posted by Deviant Ollam View Post
    while this is likely to be dangerously close to the political line, it may have relevance here on the forums, given that many of us are in a field where we may find job offers for contractor work in a very wide range of locales...

    it's important to always remember that when you hear the words "contractor" and "Columbia" in the same sentence, you shouldn't think of people whose mundane job merely took them to a troubled region of the world. "contractor in Columbia" is the media code-word for "narcotics paramilitary operative" and that changes matters a good deal.

    these individuals are, for all intents and purposes, professional soldiers engaged in conflict in a theater of war. a great percentage of the time they are ex-US-military, they are often armed, and they are utilizing military hardware and aircraft under the direct or indirect command of US and/or Columbian military brass.

    while it would be fascinating to hear their stories, i find it a bit extreme to when people casually throw around words like "heroes" or "hostages" or other such over-inflated terms. these are military operatives who were captured in enemy territory and held as prisoners of war. granted, the fact that neither side in this conflict recognizes each others' legitimacy or obeys the Geneva Conventions concerning prisoners, etc. makes matters even more confusing. these individuals were held in deplorable conditions that violate all proper standards and were (more than likely) treated by their captors as bargaining chips, etc.

    it's nasty business all around... but painting an inaccurate picture, particularly to people who may know some actual contractors in hot zones, doesn't help to clarify matters.
    Your points are all well-taken, and I don't disagree with your comments in principle. However, assuming that all these types of guys are "professional soldiers" is a bit much--two were pilots, the third a former USAF imagery analyst. Sometimes contractors really are contractors, and not weapon-toting mercenaries. Heck, they were flying in a single-engine Cessna, hardly military hardware. That's not to say they're not doing "black" work, but it doesn't mean they're all Blackwater Rambo-types, either. I don't have access to any information that you don't--I'm just suggesting I think you may be over-glamorizing the nature of their work.

    To be relevant to the thread--I'd enjoy hearing them speak, but not at DEFCON. First, I don't think their talk would be all that relevant. Second, someone who was already accepted would risk being bumped. Third, I'm guessing there are a lot of people who wanted to speak but didn't get picked--it wouldn't be fair to people who spent a lot of time putting together a CFP to throw in marginally-relevant talks at the last minute, even considering their newsworthiness.

    Leave a comment:


  • xor
    replied
    Re: A Call To Speak, The Former Hostages

    This rocks!!!!, but I guess I have to report myself. Any ideas folks. Don't want to crash the Defcon site.

    xor

    Sorry run away format violation. Had to be there.
    Last edited by xor; July 14, 2008, 20:30.

    Leave a comment:


  • xor
    replied
    Re: A Call To Speak, The Former Hostages

    Ahhh, this is so cool(and unintentional) it just keeps growing and growing. Question is will I get a buffer overflow or not.

    xor

    Sorry run away format violation. Had to be there.
    Last edited by xor; July 14, 2008, 20:29.

    Leave a comment:


  • Deviant Ollam
    replied
    Re: A Call To Speak, The Former Hostages

    Originally posted by theprez98 View Post
    three American contractors who were recently rescued
    while this is likely to be dangerously close to the political line, it may have relevance here on the forums, given that many of us are in a field where we may find job offers for contractor work in a very wide range of locales...

    it's important to always remember that when you hear the words "contractor" and "Columbia" in the same sentence, you shouldn't think of people whose mundane job merely took them to a troubled region of the world. "contractor in Columbia" is the media code-word for "narcotics paramilitary operative" and that changes matters a good deal.

    these individuals are, for all intents and purposes, professional soldiers engaged in conflict in a theater of war. a great percentage of the time they are ex-US-military, they are often armed, and they are utilizing military hardware and aircraft under the direct or indirect command of US and/or Columbian military brass.

    while it would be fascinating to hear their stories, i find it a bit extreme to when people casually throw around words like "heroes" or "hostages" or other such over-inflated terms. these are military operatives who were captured in enemy territory and held as prisoners of war. granted, the fact that neither side in this conflict recognizes each others' legitimacy or obeys the Geneva Conventions concerning prisoners, etc. makes matters even more confusing. these individuals were held in deplorable conditions that violate all proper standards and were (more than likely) treated by their captors as bargaining chips, etc.

    it's nasty business all around... but painting an inaccurate picture, particularly to people who may know some actual contractors in hot zones, doesn't help to clarify matters.

    Leave a comment:


  • xor
    replied
    Re: A Call To Speak, The Former Hostages

    Originally posted by Agent X View Post
    Would you elaborate on which hostages these are? Iranian Embassy?
    Living under a rock huh?

    Yes, the FARC hostages.

    The interview was very compelling. Being technical people who went from working with state of the art intelligence gathering equipment to the stone age in a matter of minutes. They related coming across an ad for Dell computers while in captivity and using it to dream about the systems they would find when they were finally rescued. It was this and other things that helped sustain them through their ordeal.

    It kind of annoys me how poorly they were trained knowing fully that they would be kidnapped if they were caught. We all think about what we would do in those situations. Try to escape and brave the deep dark jungle. Or wait it out and hope to be rescued. Could you survive in the jungle living off the land? Man, questions and experiences I hope I never have to face.

    xor

    Leave a comment:


  • theprez98
    replied
    Re: A Call To Speak, The Former Hostages

    Originally posted by Agent X View Post
    Would you elaborate on which hostages these are? Iranian Embassy?
    I think he's talking about the three American contractors who were recently rescued in Colombia after being held by FARC for 5+ years.

    Leave a comment:


  • Agent X
    replied
    Re: A Call To Speak, The Former Hostages

    Would you elaborate on which hostages these are? Iranian Embassy?

    Leave a comment:

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