So far, two PA battalions from the National Security Forces and the
Presidential Guard have been training in the desert outside Amman. The
DynCorp course has also been short of radios, vehicles, batons and mock weapons.
The Washington Post reported that Jordanian instructors bought cigarette
lighters in an effort to simulate pistols. The newspaper quoted DynCorp
instructors as saying that the Palestinians were provided two working
"[The State Department's] INL was supposed to have all lesson plans
completed and prepared for these battalion sized classes from the
Palestinian Authority," a DynCorp administrator said in an e-mail sent to
the Post on Feb. 28. "Unfortunately, INL was WAY behind when our guys hit
DynCorp has been conducting a 16-week course for 600 members of the
National Security Forces, the largest security agency in the PA. Some 425
members of the Presidential Guard were undergoing an eight-week course,
DynCorp was contracted to help train battalion-sized forces in anti-riot
techniques and counter-insurgency. The first PA battalion arrived in Amman
in January 2008 as part of a U.S. Congress allocation of $28 million in
The delays in training PA forces have hampered plans to deploy troops
throughout the West Bank.
Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak has pledged to
transfer security control of West Bank cities to the PA when its security
forces were deemed ready for deployment in such cities as Jenin and
Bethlehem. Barak said he would allow 600 PA troops trained in Jordan to
deploy in Jenin in April 2008.
Another shortage was in vehicles required for training PA forces to man
checkpoints. As a result, driver training was canceled from the Amman
The U.S. training mission has been expecting the arrival of body armor
and light armored personnel carriers from Saudi Arabia. The sources said
Israel opposed the equipment on grounds that this would grant military
capability to the PA.