In Code Name Phantom, we look at security at military installations and the state of the military ordnance kept there. There are shocking statistics highlighted in this book and this is the state of affairs everywhere where the military are to be found, not only here. In 2010, in South Africa, there was 78,000 tons of immediate use ordnance available, 67% of these are in need of immediate destruction, that is 52,260 tons, for reasons given in the book. In simple terms, the old ordnance may explode at any time and the problem getting worse since they are unsafe to move. They should have been used already in exercises, shot out or destroyed. However, it will take 34 years to destroy the existing unstable ordnance using normal methods which are burning or blowing. Dumping them into the oceans, the traditional way is forbidden by international treaties and will not happen.
These are mindboggling figures and it should worry you if close to any military ordnance depot anywhere in the world. But, it gets worse. It is also known that Special Forces, all of them - from the Russian Spetsnatz to the American Green Berets are designated first base hitters. When a conventional war breaks out, they are already in place to pounce on ammunition depots, air bases, fuel tanks etc. A war machine runs on logistics, end of story, no ammunition, fuel, and food and the surrendering start. What is worse though is that ammunition depots are prime targets for terrorists even when not in a war situation, obviously, terrorists need explosives, weapons and since smuggling it in is hard, raiding an ammunition depo is the answer. Accordingly, you would think such places are well defended, the threat is known. They are not. Traditionally, the attacking forces always succeed in penetrating unobserved, shockingly so.
In the US Military, the penetration exercises to test security became known as “Red Cell Operations.” The time of a military depot also being a fort, able to defend itself against a determined attack, is long gone. What is not perhaps so well-known is the way how secret agents, spies, work with Special Forces to test the depot security. However, the question arises: What if such weapons can be channelled towards resistance movements, unofficially so? What if discarded but still usable ordnance can be somehow seized and used for covert operations? The problem with the Iran / Contra Scandal was money trails, easily investigated. A better way had to be found and was found by Angelique Dawson in 2010.
Description: Spymaster extraordinaire, Angelique Dawson and her team are testing military installations against enemy attack, officially assuming the role of “terrorists” or so she explains to her bodyguard and later husband, Major Geoffrey Foxtrot, the former Police Special Forces Company Commander assisting her in operations. However, being the local head of counter-terrorism and “otherwise” at the best of times, she has her own reasons for launching Code Name Phantom. She is planning on waylaying hundreds of tons of discarded ordnance to supply it to dissidents in Zimbabwe under cover of a “Red Cell” operation. If caught, the consequences will be dire, she is operating under a cloak of total deniability. Foxtrot has his hands full to protect her from her many enemies. She also enters into a demolition’s bet with Geelslang Peter Ndebele on who can use the least explosives to destroy a ton of discarded ammunition, a further worry for Foxtrot as Angelique is not about to lose the bet and will break every safety rule to win. The hundreds of tons of mislaid ordnance must also be smuggled out of the country, another logistical nightmare for Foxtrot. If you wish to read about Covert and Special Forces Operations in sub-Saharan Africa, the GMJ Books are the place to start. You will learn about covert operations, Special Forces techniques and military history not known outside the select few. Code Name Phantom is the twenty-fourth book of the popular GMJ Series.