Sunday, December 30, 2007

NGO Security Scenario #12

You are in New York City; in town to visit the headquarters of another humanitarian organization. You have a morning meeting to discuss security coordination efforts in Darfur. As a taxi drops you off in front of the office, you hear a loud explosion. You look down the street towards the sound. Press the play button to find out what you see.

What would you do? How far away from this incident would you feel safe? Once you reached safety, what would you do? Share your thoughts by clicking on COMMENTS below.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Security Tidbits

Various humanitarian security topics of note, as the year wraps up...

A Chad court convicted six French aid workers (Zoe's Ark) of kidnapping and has sentenced them to eight years of hard labor. While it seems likely international pressure will either reduce the sentences or transfer imprisonment to France, the court ruling does send a strong accountability message to the humanitarian community.

Chrispin writes in with a link to a nice security manual published by the New Zealand government. Entitled Security in Government Sectors, even though the manual isn't NGO-specific, it's quite comprehensive and has a lot of good information that can be applied outside government circles. Definitely worth a bookmark.

A belated pointer to humanitarian adviser (and frequent commenter to NGO Security Scenario posts) Kevin Toomer's blog. His Web site and blog have been up and running for awhile now, and feature a variety of humanitarian-security content.


Sunday, December 23, 2007

NGO Security Scenario #11

You are taking a well deserved Christmas holiday in Le Fornet, France. After a hard day of skiing, you're ready to relax. Your friend is a few minutes behind when you finish your last run. As you take off your skis, you hear a loud rumbling sound and look over your shoulder. Click the play button below to see what happens next.

What actions would you immediately take? Does the fact the people around you are joking make the situation safe? What will you do after the initial threat has passed? Share your thoughts by clicking on COMMENTS below.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

NGO Security Scenario #10

You are working in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. A national staff driver is taking you and a program manager to a meeting with a government official to discuss security issues with food distribution. You are in an older car, marked with your organization's name and logo. As you head into the city, you encounter a protest and are surrounded by people. They slash the car's tires and break a window. Your driver talks to them, calming the situation down, and they leave. The driver says the police and military are coming, and that the car is in the middle of what looks like will be a violent confrontation. The car can't be driven, and you make the decision to leave the area on foot. The driver is only vaguely familiar with the neighborhood. Press the play button below to see and hear what you encounter.

What is your plan? How will you accomplish it? What are the primary threats? What are you carrying with you that will be of assistance? Share your thoughts by clicking on COMMENTS below.

Terrorist Baseball Cards

Collecting baseball cards used to be a popular pastime of boys growing up in the United States. And in keeping with that tradition, the U.S. Department of Defense has issued a collection of Terrorist Recognition Cards. Click on a region to see who's who (complete with stats) and who's wanted.


Friday, December 14, 2007

World's Most Dangerous Roads

A nice Google Map of the most dangerous roads on the planet (in terms of fatality accidents) according to the Association for Safe International Road Travel.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Algeria U.N. Bombings

Has your organization done a good job in mitigating the threats of car bombs in high-risk locations?

Does your organization have effective response plans in place for all offices that detail how to handle the aftermath of a car bombing or explosion?

Condolences to family, friends and colleagues of U.N. staff members who lost their lives in today's bombings in Algeria.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Hostage Incident Management Seminar

InterAction is hosting a Hostage Incident Management seminar on January 15, 2008 in Washington D.C. This topic usually doesn't get a lot of coverage in typical humanitarian security training offerings, and it's nice to see InterAction stepping up to the plate to share information. Seating is limited. For more information, contact John Schafer at:

Sunday, December 09, 2007

NGO Security Scenario #9

The country you are working in has erupted into civil war. All humanitarian organizations are suspending operations and evacuating international staff. Due to the lack of overland evacuation routes, the United Nations and other military forces will be transporting humanitarian workers to safety by air. You are assigned as liaison to the military and will handle logistics issues. You are to meet an officer arriving by helicopter, and then coordinate staff evacuation on that aircraft. You and the staff members to be evacuated are waiting in a field for the helicopter to land. Press the play button below to see what happens next.

What are your first actions following the incident? What are your priorities? Did you take any measures prior to the helicopter's arrival to enhance staff's ground safety? Share your thoughts by clicking on COMMENTS below.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

NGO Security Scenario #8

You are performing a security audit for your organization in Kenya. On your itinerary is a trip to the Kenya-Sudan border to observe a small food distribution program. After a several hour journey with a staff member, you arrive. An excited group of people has been waiting for the truck and the staff member begins distributing the food. Press the play button below to see what happens.

What potential threats do you recognize? What questions do you have for the staff member after you leave the distribution site? What recommendations will you make to senior management based on what you encountered? Share your thoughts by clicking on COMMENTS below.