This of interest from John Farnam of Defense Training International
26 Aug 10
From critical incidents world-wide, it is painfully obvious that " hostage/kidnap incidents" seldom have happy endings!
Whether being held for ransom by local bandits/insurgents, being taken hostage by a desperado during a bank robbery, or any other scenario where your personal freedom is usurped, and you find yourself under the control of violent criminals, you will likely not live through it!
Hostages are rescued, unhurt, from such desperate circumstances only a small percentage of the time, and I suspect even fewer will survive in the future as the entire world situation continues to grow ever more dangerous and barbarous.
During kidnapings, even after ransom has been paid, hostages are almost always permanently maimed/mutilated/traumatized. Most don't live through it, and are never seen again.
And, when you're physically restrained, confined, blindfolded, isolated, and weakened through starvation, dehydration, and physical abuse, options incrementally evaporate.
How does one avoid becoming a hostage:
(1) Lower your personal profile. Don't appear to be "important." Don't hang around with "important" people. Don't stand next to "important" people when they're photographed.
Don't be interviewed on TV, don't give speeches to large groups, and don't get your photo published in newspapers/magazines. Having a face, physical appearance, and status that is well known and immediately recognizable carries with it enormous risk, especially now!
(2) Minimize your time in airports, banks, political events, and foreign countries.
(3) When entering any building or vehicle, immediately identify all exits and potential exits. Sit close to one. Always have an exit plan!
(4) Be alert and aware. Get out and away at the first sign of criminal activity. When told to "stay put" by "authorities," get out!
(5) Be self-contained. Always have cash, credit-cards, blades, and guns on your person. Have a rifle, magazines, and a trauma kit in your car.
(6) Be willing, and fully prepared, to shoot your way out, immediately! This may well be your only viable option, and, the longer you wait, the weaker you become. Options disappear rapidly the longer the event goes on.
(7) Don't wait to be rescued. Be constantly looking for opportunities to avoid/escape/evade. Act at the critical moment. Depending on circumstances, rescuers may not be on their way at all, and the ones who do show up may not be particularly helpful (as in Mumbai). In fact, they may even be in on it (as in Beslan), or just bungling buffoons (as in Manilla).
The entire System may be overwhelmed and paralyzed, and coldly indifferent political forces, even in this country, may well consider you "expendable" and may already have written you off.
(8) It can't be said too often: You're on your own!