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When a motorcade encounters an ambush, basic tactics can be summarized fairly succinctly. If possible, avoid the ambush by taking an alternate route. If the ambush cannot be avoided, drive through it at speed. If the ambush cannot be driven through, then back out of the ambush and retreat. However, those precepts will not always work. Sometimes an ambush is set so that the route is blocked and once the motorcade is in the kill zone, retreat is blocked. Alternatively, vehicles may be immobilized by IEDs or other methods and are thus stuck in the kill zone. If reinforcements are on the way in the form of helicopter gunships or a heavy rescue party is only minutes away, then the best tactic is to take cover and hold off the ambushers.

If help is not close or if the ambushers are so heavily armed that given time they will overwhelm the security team or destroy the vehicles—even if armored—with RPGs, mortars, etc., then the security team may have to fight through the ambush. Trained terrorists will have set their ambush with fields of fire that make staying in the kill zone virtual suicide. For a trained team, however, which has practiced immediate-action drills to deal with a static ambush, there are some advantages.

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