Your fascination with the stealthy but deadly efficient women and men whose work involves blowing up stuff sending folks up to the pearly gates gets fed here.

Who is a mercenary?

A mercenary is a career military person contracted to serve in a foreign military outfit. This person is driven purely by monetary gain.

Mercenaries are now known as private military contractors (PMCs) or private security contractors (PSCs); very non-threatening titles. Their job description is a danger, just so you know.

Legalities?

  • It is not clear if this work is entirely legal. The UN technically distances itself from anything to do with bankrolling mercenary activities, or training and use of them. The 2001 UN Mercenary Convention outlaws mercenary activities and is supported by 35 states.
  • Countries with vast military outfits are quiet on this. They neither support nor are they bound by the convention.
  • Mercenaries are not used openly. Their identity has morphed to PMCs and PSCs who carry out activities that were the preserve of mercenaries.
  • The argument is that no convention is quite clear on the legalities surrounding the use of mercenaries.

Why this career?

For the money, obviously! Putting your life on the line constantly with no promise of backup pays quite a lot. $10000 per month is no small change considering that a regular soldier earns almost as much in a year!

Then there is the thrill of laughing in the face of danger, as Mufasa’s son would say.

What are the intrigues of the job?

  • The danger is the main theme here. You face it constantly, personally and at close range.
  • You are on your own. There is no backup should you find yourself besieged. Every assignment is quite candidly a death mission. You get to watch people die around you and the knowledge that you could be next is bone jarring.
  • There is basically no country that will claim you if you are captured. Repeat: you are on your own.

How to qualify for mercenary jobs?

You certainly don’t get enrolled in college to be taught how to be a mercenary with exams and grades, but you can:

  • Get fit –You are going to be lugging deadly weapons, running, rolling and leaping for a living. Your body had better be in a position to take the heat.
  • Get some experience –If you have military or law enforcement experience, you are as good as in. If not, you can sign up for a training programme.
  • Learn a foreign language…or three –You are going to be working in foreign countries with foreign militaries. Spruce up your language skills by adding a few. Consider the languages in the hotspots, like Somali, Kurdish, Spanish or Arabic.
  • Revamp your resume – Highlight any relevant skills, experience and qualifications you have for this line of work.

Where to look

Seeing as this is not the kind of work you find in the classifieds, you will need to look elsewhere. Security companies are a good lead. There are many where you can make discreet inquiries.

You are now set to get some excitement.

Published by Lucy Jones