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So Thomas sends us this “Close Protection Operative” everyday carry line-up courtesy of Everyday Carry.  Supposedly this comes from the Middle East and represents his “non-working” load-out.

He explains:

My absolute minimum EDC as a Close Protection Operative (not during mission). Depending on the mission I beef it up with gear like multi tool, medical gear, more ammo, radio equipment, Leatherman Raptor, assault rifle and my covert plate carrier

Personally, I can’t imagine working “downrange” without a potent light at my disposal.  Then again, I’m not an operator.   But c’mon, it’s not like he’s got a pair of night vision goggles stuffed into his back pocket.  A Streamlight Protac 1-AAA light?

I will say that Italian Salvatore Ferragamo Bifold Calf Skin Wallet looks both new and pricey.  So too does the $4,000ish La Chaux de Fonds, Switzerland-made Marathon CSAR watch.

He carries a GLOCK 19 in a TXC X1 inside-the-waistband rig.  No big surprise there.  GLOCKS are everywhere you want to be.  Kind of surprised he’s not toting spare magazines.  After all, the Middle East is about as dangerous as many neighborhoods in Chicago’s South and West sides.

Anyone else want to chime in on their thoughts about what Thomas is carrying?





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  1. Close protection operative? Is this new asinine lingo from the military or is it a poor attempt to sound cool. When I was in it was referred to as PSD or Personnel security detail. Seems a bit lacking for that part of the world unless that is his inside the wire carry. However even I carried a surefire 6P while I was in South Central Baghdad. That light just seems anemic to me for the location/duty. Different strokes for different folks but PSD requires protecting more than your own ass. The high end glitter sure as hell won’t get it done. Bad guy bullets don’t care how much your watch and wallet costs.

    • Maybe he’s not military? Maybe some one like Black Water? Is that the right name, Black Water?

      • Is Black Water even still a thing? I guess I’ve probably been out of the game too long. 😔

        • After a quick Google search it seems they are indeed Academi. That’s actually a little surprising to me that they are still operating after the the shooting and backlash that happened afterwards. I don’t remember all the details but I remember it was big news for quite a while.

        • No One Special:

          There will always be private sector. Always. When one company draws too much attention, they sell it and become another.

          • True but I wouldn’t have thought a name change would have been enough for Blackwater. That was pretty scandalous from what I remember.

        • Going purely from memory here:

          Blackwater changed their name to Xe (not Xi, my bad) after a well publicized incident in Iraq where they shot a bunch of civilians. This was linked to the situation that led to some of their contractors being killed, dragged through the streets, lit on fire and hung from a bridge in Fallujah. That’s, in part, what kicked off the first Battle of Fallujah.

          There was, IIRC, some serious controversy about the whole thing where Blackwater was alleged to have shot at civilians and killed them basically in cold blood but then it turns out that they were under attack and had just realized that their Iraqi counterparts were the ones who led them into an ambush (an accusation that later appears to be true) while the BGs were not in uniforms and some of the guys in “friendly” uniforms were actually hostile and actively shooting at the contractors… so it was a huge mess where BGs in “friendly” uniforms got zapped for being BGs and then the Iraqis cried “murder” and tried to make it as if the “friendlies” were shooting at insurgents and got stitched up by Blackwater guys as some sort of racist “kill all the Hajis” type of thing. As I recall it was never really clear if the contractors were carefully shooting legit targets or just blasting anyone who happened to be in the area or if, under the circumstances, they could tell the difference anyway. “Clusterfuck” is probably the most appropriate word I can think of for that situation. I honestly didn’t follow that investigation to it’s conclusion if indeed a conclusion was ever truly reached.

          Xe changes to Academi a few years later (~2009/10?) and, again purely from memory, I believe this name change was due to bad press and government pressure after Xe got caught having a bunch of NFA toys in their armory that they hadn’t properly declared. Again, IIRC, that was some MGs, RPGs and some explosives. Some of those, yet again IIRC, were imported from overseas without proper paperwork and State Department approval. Contractors like this can get all sorts of licenses to import/export/use/possess all sorts of goodies and they have the budgets to do so but there’s a Olympus Mons sized pile of paperwork to do it. Again, I didn’t follow this one all the way to it’s conclusion but it sounded to me at the time like they probably just goofed on technicalities of paperwork, particularly in importing/re-importing Soviet(esque) weapons for use in places like Africa, the ME and Afghanistan and that the Obama administration put them through the ringer for it.

          • Sounds about right as far as Blackwater goes. I would agree with the cluterfuck assertion as well. Did I think Blackwater was wrong? Not on its face I didn’t. Only because I know how people in that particular country operate and Backwaters explanation as to what happened sounded legitimately possible. Nationals that worked with coalition forces were always to be considered suspect. You never knew if they were wolves in sheep’s clothing or if they would decide to go native all of a sudden. The name/changing hands or why I knew very little about.

    • Sounds like contractor. Could be BTDT guy or could be some paper-pusher that poses, impossible to tell…

    • Yes but not sure what you think of it but seems a little anemic to me especially for the location/duty.

      • Can’t tell what is. Not a Surefire and that’s all I’ve used for years. Some of those small lights will suprise you. The one cell Backup is one of my favorites.

  2. It’s his bare minimum EDC… (NON-MISSION)..
    That probably explains why it’s light on tacti-cool and high in fashion…

  3. “Mom! When we’re in the Walmart together, you’re supposed to call me a Close Protection Operative! You promised!”

    • CPO – there’s a flashback to 45 – 50 years ago…made me think of the old Customs Patrol Officers working the Anapra area of New Mexico (just west of El Paso). Used to see them napping in their rigs when I took home leave to visit my parents.

      Thanks for kickstarting an old set of memories.

  4. meh…

    Who knows. You can be anything online. I’m not doubting this carry though. Just no spare mag or two? Especially for such a detail?

    I could care less how much your gear costs. We have no idea how much this guy makes, and it’s not like he’s got 4k invested in the Glock mods.

    Doesn’t matter where you are in the world. Some places are dangerous, then you drive 50 miles and it’s paradise. Unless it’s Russia, or France….

    • The vast majority of everyone who comments here frequently would qualify as a Walter Mitty as far as Im concerned. The most commented upon articles are always the ones that give geezers here the slightest excuse to spout off about how theyre chomping at the bit to go play back yard commando in some sort of fantasy Cormac Macarthy novel they believe the country is on the verge of becoming. It’s ridiculous, but mostly just repetitive at this point.

      • wouldn’t you like to be a prepper too?
        look, pal, if you’ve never had veins in your teef you probably shouldn’t be here.
        now, back to my vigilante fantasy.

      • I have never understood why some people feel the need to show the world what they have on their person even if they aren’t playing Walter Mitty. It’s as if they want to show how badass they are. I almost fell into it once and took a picture of my EDC and the couple small multitools I carry and then said to myself who GAF and deleted it.

  5. Nothing wrong with the kit, I suppose.

    Some pricey accoutrements and he is missing a grenade launcher and a bunch of ammo if he is in the middle east.

    • lol. The middle east is a big place. Best to go unnoticed in some spots. I knew guys who could grow a beard and dress up to fit right in. Or… wear a derka…. I mean ninja suit… I mean…

      • I remember seeing a female goat herder that looked exactly like a damn ninja. Not the usual black nightgown they usually wear but what looked like a black ninja suit. Looked like she wanted to eat someone’s heart from their chest. Crazy shit man!

    • Friend of mine was w CIA guy in Yemen after the Cole bombing. He went armed with a bag of Snickers. It got him in everywhere. Dudes walk around Sana’a with AKs. He figured his Glock was useless so he left it in the embassy safe.

  6. Come on….at least one 17rnd spare mag, not that tough to conceal In a branded knife pouch.
    Hell It’s how I carry a spare mag.

  7. Middle East , were We at? Indiana or Kentucky? We can’t be in Missouri, Missouri is the far East Midwest just North or South down or up a block from that other state on Route 66.. . . So you see, just because your from the Mid East don’t make you all bad and sht. It just means your lost. Fancy watch or not.

  8. WWIC… “Non mission” gear seems a bit light (no pun) but maybe he just stays in the good part of town. I am surprised by the lack of a second magazine, good for malfunction clearing even if the extra rounds aren’t a priority.

  9. OK. My 2 cents; Dump the spidy knife. Always been high $$ junk. Way too many GOOD knives out there.

    • What don’t you like about Spyderco knives? I agree that the Paramilitary 2 pictured is more expensive than necessary. But this EDC’er apparently likes some manly bling. Check out his wallet and watch. I think Spyderco’s niche is the <$100 market. I have several examples that take and hold an edge very well. And I think the trademark Spyderco hole is the best non flipper/assisted opening mechanism I’ve tried.

      • Had a few when they first came out. One felt like sandpaper when opening and closing. Sent it back, was returned and broke at the pivot in less than a month. The second , at that time, had such poor tempering that it couldn’t hold an edge.
        I think this was about the time that a lot of US companies were out sourcing to China.
        I also thought the hole was grossly over sized. Still do.
        I had switched from an original Buck 110 and went back to it.
        I know a lot of the bugs were worked out, and today they are usable blades, even if overpriced, but the old saw about first impressions holds true.

  10. Another example of how “prepping” and “EDC” has become about how much you can spend on this stuff.

    In other words, it’s the usual “dick measuring contest.” Waste of everyone’s time.

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