ATHENA FACTOR: THE BEST WEAPON IS HIDDEN UNTIL IT MAKES ITSELF KNOWN.
The worlds history is replete with fine examples of female protectors dating back to ancient Africa and China.
These females protectors have served their charge well and effectively. So when I was first asked by my friend Denida to write this article. I thought what an honor, but what could I say that has not already been said about my female colleagues. So I said well, I will just cull from my own personal experiences. Now I know that there are a lot of misconceptions out there concerning female bodyguards skillset. So lets try to educate and enlighten each other and at the same time quell ignorance as we find it, shall we. I have always thought that a female operative was vital to operations. I have had the good fortune of working alongside some of the best women in the business. With a female specialist you have the perfect mixture of really good subterfuge and efficiency. I don’t mean to sound sterile and technical in this writing. But what is better then having a bodyguard that you can’t determine who they are or what they are capable of? I also think crypto-sexism plays a part in this also because most attackers will look at a woman and think they detect weakness therefore a potential target(obviously they have never read anything by Deborah Tannen). There is nothing that makes me more happier than an attacker with a cognitive dissonance when faced with a female agent. Women are making inroads in this business and the demand is ever growing around the world . I just completed a deployment detail with a number of excellent female bodyguards and at 6ft 3(unless I am undercover) I look like security so I always marveled at the ability for these bodyguards to blend in. There is a myriad of thoughts (in most cases)going through a potential attackers mind when confronted with a possible female protector; ..is she the CEO,business executive, nanny, secretary,sister,girlfriend..who knows? It’s a great thing because in our business hardening the target is what we strive for and employing a female operative can do just that. The point being to keep an attacker psychologically off balance for a bit..now that’s not saying that it will prevent an attack per se. But if one does occur imagine the surprise on the faces of an attacker when he realizes how wrong they were.. In my experience I have learned that female operatives have a certain instinct or intuition that their male counterparts just do not possess and that can be a very instrumental tool in EP.
Now if there are any detractors out there who doubt the effectiveness and bravery just keep in mind that Qaddafi and the Brazilian president and lots of others, have a nice number of female guards. Now in Qaddafi’s case I think that his female bodyguards are also incidentally trained killers. There was an incident with Qaddafi’s female guard named (Aisha) when an AOP occurred she hurled herself on top of her charge and prevented him from getting shot. Now that’s dedication! Unfortunately this resulted in her body getting riddled with bullets and killing her. I have always thought it a great idea and necessary for female operatives in the field and I welcome them. The Secret Service is hiring female agents and there a lot female agents working Saudi details.
Anthony Burnside CPI
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