Range work played a large part in our training in Afghanistan, with each team attending ranges on a regular basis. Our Afghan Close Protection Team also had the opportunity to shoot, alongside their British and Commonwealth partners.
Shooting is definitely a skill which can be honed through practice. The more you shoot, quite simply the better you become. Well, with good coaching too. You could liken the role of a Close Protection Operator to an Olympic Sprinter. 4 years in the preparation, then the event, when it comes, lasts only 10 seconds... but you have to put in the 4 years of work up to make it count. You could stretch that analogy too far. At least the Olympic Sprinter knows when his event is. Our team lived their live on the starting blocks, and there are no Silver Medals in a gunfight.
Fortunately, throughout my time here, none of our CPO's were put to this test. We did have incidents, and very nasty ones too, and the response of our Afghan and Gurkha Guard Force was a testament to the selection and training of our staff; British Council Attack