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Swiss Guards

Private Security

The prime requisite of good governance in any society is the safety and well-being of its citizens but peace and harmony cannot be imposed in isolation by law enforcement agencies alone. A sound economy, an equitable system of justice, affordable utilities, employment opportunities etc are only some of the factors directly contributing to good law and order. The security of the individual may be the general responsibility of the regime in power, personal security whether by guards or by electronic means, remains the responsibility of the individual, group, corporate body, establishment, etc in any country of the world. Increasingly government departments are turning to private security as a cost-effective means in the same manner as individuals and entities. In a historical sense, private security has come a full circle. In a feudal society the concept of private security has not changed in thousands of years, in today’s modern world the same principles apply. Tribal, clan chiefs, etc had private bodyguards paid out of their own pockets, it is the same today. The Swiss Guards at the Vatican were formerly called “mercenaries”, in fact they exist as a living model for private security through the ages. Most monarchs and absolute rulers preferred “mercenaries” from other countries to protect them against their own people. These mercenaries sometimes took control of the State itself, e.g. as recently as in Comoros Island in the Indian Ocean. To distinguish between private security and private armies, that fine line may be blurred. It is therefore understandable why any government would like to regulate the private security services industry, in the wrong hands a weapon designed for personal protection could well become a weapon for coercion or destruction. This business can be a double-edged sword for some entrepreneurs, more often than not those who have reasons to be afraid and/or jealous of will move Heaven and Earth to damage the success of the enterprise as well as the individual himself. Merit will always remain a disqualification in the eyes of the inferior and the incompetent.

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