The Ugandan Guards

 The security force used for most of the routine, boring security jobs on base is the Ugandan Guards. These are contract employees from Uganda. They are young folks who all formerly served in the Ugandan Army at some point. In order to make more money, they sign up to do security work for a contractor, and they come here to Iraq. The average pay is about $600 to $1,000 a month, which is a very good income considering the alternatives in employment in Africa. When it was more dangerous in Iraq, they were paid more, nearly double their current pay. They are not mercenaries, and are never sent out on missions: That is the job for US Military personnel.


So you will see Ugandan Guards at the entrance to every DFAC (dining facility), the PX’s (shopping), the rec centers and gyms, and anyplace else where there is likely to be a gathering of personnel. They also sit in the towers that line the perimeter of the base, keeping watch at all hours. They are easy to notice in their tan uniforms. Here is a picture of two guys guarding the front entrance to the big DFAC #1:


The Ugandans are very friendly people. I’ve come to know several and we greet each other by name and chat. They are always ready with a greeting when you pass them at a guard post. They speak English quite well, and it’s always interesting to talk with a guard and find out what sort of plans he or she has in life. The Ugandans are also interested about life in America. Here is my friend Kelvin. He and I go have dinner once in a while, then visit the rec center to play a game:



The Ugandans are allowed to use the internet at the East Side rec center, and you’ll always see dozens here, keeping in touch with home:


Or playing pool:


One interesting thing is that many Ugandan Guards are Christian. You will often see them in church or in Bible studies, right alongside us. You never see the other TCN’s, like the Nepali’s, at such gatherings. Here in Balad they have several gospel services, primarily this is for the black soldiers (of course anyone else is welcome). The Ugandans attend this service often, which is interesting because Ugandan Christians have very little in common with African-American Baptist Gospel service. But they all have a good time together, and I’ve even seen a Ugandan group do song and dance performances at these services, which is always very well received.


The Ugandan Guards are cool. They are the only other people besides US Military who carry weapons here on base, and for that reason I feel affinity towards them. And they will use those weapons to fight if need be. There have been no base incursions for years, anywhere in Iraq, but the Ugandans will, and have, put their military training and weapons to good use when needed. So it’s good to know that they are on our side, protecting us. I’m glad to have friends here in Iraq among the Ugandan Guards.


23 Responses

  1. Interesting about the Ugandans. I would figure they wouldn’t have anything in common with African-Americans but the color of skin. Anyhoo…good to read your blog. I’ll let Bill know. Blessings

  2. Brian – you telling me troops are no longer in the guard towers? That was the worst part of our tour. The Ugandans were just showing up as we were leaving, and we were wondering whether guard duty for troops had become a thing of the past.

  3. Ugandans you are doing a good job keep it up

  4. Its intresting to work in an environment where ya understood , bravo to all the troops ! Troops are doing a great job we hope the insegences will have to get down soon in Iraq , we ensure that soldirs go back home alive and see their families and also enjoy the hard earned dime.

  5. Thanks for keeping our brothers and sisters save .may god bless u americans.

  6. To day is a good day God has blesed us with rain in iraq Q-west for 8 hours. what a good day!

  7. The Ugandans do not know how to use their weapons they suck at their jobs. They run during attacks. They sleep on posts when the Americans aren’t looking. If you have Ugandans gurding you you had better watch out because its more or less like having noone guard you at all.

    • When I came to Iraq,the first day on duty I worked with an American soldier at ECP1 INBOUND,but honestly I had a very terrible night since my partner(the American soldier) was bussy sleeping all night long…!
      Don’r make it sound like its only ugandan guards who sleep on duty,American soldiers too sleep on duty.

    • tell me,is this person calling him self sergeant,is he well trained or a the people who they pick from prisons in USA to come and serve their punishments in Iraq and else where,my friend let me tell you one thing every body in IRAQ-WIDE BASES they know that Ugandans know what their doing.first of all Americans were being killed on posts in the base but the moment they brought Ugandans these people disappeared.BUT WE KNOW YOU/SOME AMERICANS YOU DON’T APPRECIATE UGANDANS THAT’S WHY YOUR PAYING US 400 DOLLARS,NO MEDICAL TREATMENT,so you people!!!!!!!OK.UGANDANS BE COOL WE DO OUR JOB.

  8. God bless Uganda & America”
    we shall work together in all

  9. Sergeant, its nice to feel appriciated, true some suck, but a tinny fraction, ask yourself why the Us militaly had to be relieved of this boring task? U too would sleep if you stood the same post, for 12hrs everyday for a year. Please sergeant grow a brain and use it.

    BRIAN, thanx a million, it feels wornderful to know some appriciates.

    • I think almost everyone appreciates the Ugandan guards. You guys (and some gals) are great, and we enjoy working with you. God bless you, and have a safe time in Iraq until you can return to Uganda….

  10. sergeant u suck if ugandans sleep on post why americans are still work with them?since 20005 tell people the truth ok 4me ithink ugandans are more fit than u guyz dont put resthium in the war ok bullshit fuck sergeant

  11. No one likes to sleep on duty but it s natural to sleep .We should not blame each other but lets work as a team to accomplish our mision in iraq

  12. guys lets not quarrel. lets blame no seargent nor him to blame the ugandans .i think we all sleep at posts but the truth remains,americans sleep more.i thank u Brian for the appretiation towards the ugandans coz some like sgt still suck.

  13. lets stop pointing fingers on one another” to me i know we all did a good job, and it was a Teamwork, that is how we managed to achive more.
    we should not use our own streaghth again to be our weakness.

  14. God bless ugandan 4 good job there doing. And great thanks for American who can really appreacite our job, God bless u all. Retired gurd, all along in Uganda.

  15. Julius Amuka Ugandan veteran,
    Despite of all the bad weather and the stressful working environment,I loved working with the USFORCES at the south ECP Balad! I stil miss u guys,God bless u!

  16. at camp taqadum dfac 2 near greenfield an american army solder fell down while sleeping on duty and was saved by ugandan gaurds from his superiors who were hulling alot of F*** insults on him

  17. this is george from q-west base,God bless us ugandans en give us more blessings

  18. The fact of the matter is we were Exploited by the United States, fighting Fighting the war which was not ours, the United States used their power to exploit the poor Ugandans, because they knew we wanted a job, we wanted the money, this is the United States foreign policy.

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