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  1. #1
    OSO Content Provider Commercial Member SHARKEY-IMAGES's Avatar
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    Jun 2001

    Thumbs up McGary911 Must be proud!!!

    A story on McGary911's dad on the front page of the paper today!

    [SIZE=4]Point Beach retiree proud to be part of historic mission[/SIZE]

    Published in the Asbury Park Press 02/11/05

    Ask retired Police Chief John H. McGary why he traded the comfort of his Point Pleasant Beach home for Baghdad's war zone, and he'll give you two answers: boredom and a yearning to be part of history.

    McGary, 58, one of 500 U.S. civilian police advisers in Iraq, goes to work each day in an armored convoy wearing body armor and a helmet. The Baghdad police academy where he trains has been hit by insurgent mortar fire. And he has even fallen victim to severe food poisoning caused by spoiled meals.

    But after 11 months in Iraq, McGary said he sees a country filled with more hope than terror and believes he is helping Iraqis regain control of their police force.

    "All these attacks you hear on the police stations and recruiting centers, if 10 of them get killed today, there will still be 100 more out there tomorrow looking to take their place," McGary said yesterday in a telephone interview from his hotel in Baghdad. "It really is quite amazing."
    When asked why they sign up for such a mission, McGary said the new recruits have just one message: "They say they are doing a job for their country."

    McGary, who retired in 2002 from the Point Pleasant Beach police department after nearly 34 years five as chief is not a U.S. Army or government employee. He is a civilian contractor hired through a $6 billion U.S. State Department civilian police program.

    In the last two weeks, McGary's employer, DynCorp International, based in Virginia, has begun a new recruiting campaign to entice retired and active duty police officers with more than eight years' experience to sign up as private police advisers for a nearly tax-free salary of $120,623, with all expenses paid. Fliers have been mailed to numerous officers in New Jersey.

    With the support of his wife, Barbara, McGary signed on with DynCorp last year after hearing about the company on a radio ad.

    A year into his retirement, McGary said, "I was getting bored. I didn't want to go out and get a run-of-the-mill job. I wanted something different. And I certainly got it."

    Mrs. McGary, who remains at home here, said her husband's deep sense of history drew him to the area and she did not try to dissuade him. "I didn't want to be the one to squash his dream," she said.

    McGary has trained Iraqi police in Karbala in central Iraq and was assigned to the K-9 unit in Baghdad in August.

    "The entire K-9 unit in the country consists of 14 dogs," McGary said. "It's in a part of the Baghdad police academy. We are just training bomb dogs. When we came in, the dogs weren't trained and the handlers weren't trained."

    Under former dictator Saddam Hussein, Iraq had no real police force, McGary said. It was a reactive tool that did whatever the ruling party ordered.

    During one training session at the academy, "we started to get mortared pretty good," McGary said. He and the other police advisers moved the 120 to 140 trainees into bomb shelters before entering themselves.

    One of the 10 interpeters on hand asked the Americans why they didn't go into the bunkers first.

    "We said we are responsible for them (the trainees) and we are responsible for you (the interpeters)," McGary said. "Why don't you get in?"

    The interpeter, speaking for the others, said, "If you won't go in and you die, we will die with you."

    "That is the mentality over there. They want to be like us back in the States. They want to raise a family and have a decent life. They know they can't have it until their defense forces get up and running."

    The hope is in the faces of the children, he said.

    "We go by in SUVs they all know what kind of vehicles we are in and the little kids wave and smile," McGary said. "It just isn't what we see on TV."
    Outsourcing training
    The State Department granted DynCorp a $50 million contract in 2003 to start the civilian police adviser program for Iraq, and last year granted it another contract that could pay the company $1.75 billion for its worldwide policing program, call CivPol for Civilian Police Program, according to its parent company, Computer Sciences Corp.

    If all options are exercised, DynCorp's payment for its work in Iraq could reach to $800 million, according to a State Department spokesman. Moving such military functions to civilian contractors has become a hallmark of the Iraqi war, said Eric Davis, professor of political science at Rutgers University, New Brunswick, and author of "Memories of State: Politics, History and Collective Identity in Modern Iraq."

    "The downsizing of the Army has necessitated the bringing in of private contractors," said Davis, a former director of Rutgers' Center for Middle Eastern Studies. But, the move is costly, with sometimes deadly results for private contractors.

    Four contractors for Blackwater Security Consulting were murdered last year in Fallujah and their burned bodies hanged from a bridge.

    It may cost four times as much to bring in a private contractor to replace a sewer system than to have the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers do the work under military protection, Davis said. The military still has to protect the contractors, he said.

    "The U.S. government right now doesn't want to be criticized for increasing the size of the military," Davis said. "But in effect they are increasing the size of the military. What they are doing is increasing it within the private sector rather than the public sector."
    Weighing the risks
    DynCorp's latest promotion a glossy color brochure with the salary of "$120,632" in large type on its cover hasn't appealed to several officers interviewed in Dover Township. Not every department or officer in the area receive the solicitation, but DynCorp regularly advertises on police Web sites.

    "You have to be concerned about your safety," said Dover Lt. Michael Dorick, who is not signing up. "Everyone watches the news."

    Lt. Kent A. Shuebrook, also a Dover officer, said the salary is not that much higher than what senior police officers are paid in large departments. Shuebrook's salary is $114,000.

    "I'm a Vietnam veteran," he said. "I spent 13 months in sunny Southeast Asia. I make almost that much money they are offering to go over, and I wouldn't live to spend it. Iraqi police are very, very serious targets."

    McGary said working in Iraq is not about the money.

    Many of the 500 DynCorp advisers are like him, retired officers with pensions, he said.

    "They are trying to do some good," he said. "I didn't want to have this opportunity and when I'm 70 years old, sitting back in the chair, and have to say, 'I wish I had.' I will never have to say that. That is not a bad way to go out."

    When you see your Dad, Tell him I said THANKS for his service.
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  2. #2
    Platinum Member Platinum Member CAP071's Avatar
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    Jul 2001

    Re: McGary911 Must be proud!!!

    Yep My father was offered that . I'm glad he turned it down.

  3. #3
    Registered McGary911's Avatar
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    May 2002
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    Thumbs up Re: McGary911 Must be proud!!!

    Thanks for posting Sharkey. I've had a bunch of people mention that article to me. He comes home for good in a month. I'll be glad he's back. I get to talk to him most days on IM. He feels they are accomplishing something over there, but will be glad to be home.

    For anyone that didn't know, which I'm sure is most people....Tim Sharkey grew up across the street from my dad's office, the police station in Pt pleasant Beach, NJ.....

    I picked up a bunch of copies of the paper yesterday

  4. #4
    Enjoy the show VIP Member Ron P's Avatar
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    Feb 2001
    The Joisey Shore

    Re: McGary911 Must be proud!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by McGary911
    For anyone that didn't know, which I'm sure is most people....Tim Sharkey grew up in the cell behind my dad's desk, the police station in Pt pleasant Beach, NJ.....

  5. #5
    OSO Content Provider Commercial Member SHARKEY-IMAGES's Avatar
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    Jun 2001

    Re: McGary911 Must be proud!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by McGary911
    Thanks for posting Sharkey.
    Now let's get him home safe!

    Digital Photography & Video one BYTE at a time !

  6. #6
    Registered RollWithIt's Avatar
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    Jun 2003

    Re: McGary911 Must be proud!!!

    As a former LEO I understand what it is that has driven him to go over there in all that turmoil. I applaud his efforts to make things better. By the sounds of it he must have been a good Chief to work for. Good luck to him and may he have a safe return.

  7. #7
    Registered Pantera1's Avatar
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    Mar 2002

    Re: McGary911 Must be proud!!!

    Yes nice job ..thanks
    I would have sent my dad but I dont think they would have listened to him after he called them all Towel heads

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