Does anyone have an experience working in the middle east?

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James_0011
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Does anyone have an experience working in the middle east?

Post by James_0011 » Sat Dec 31, 2016 7:20 pm

I've been doing some research about working for a military contractor in the middle east, and it seems like salaries of 200k+ are not uncommon. Best of all, its tax free.

Has anyone taken advantage of this to quickly save for ere? If so, what job did you do and where did you work? Thanks

The Old Man
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Re: Does anyone have an experience working in the middle east?

Post by The Old Man » Sat Dec 31, 2016 8:01 pm

I did two 1-year tours in Afghanistan and Iraq as an Engineer. Which country are you talking about? Is their war/unrest in the area? Is this security or technical services? $200+K is easily obtainable.

James_0011
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Re: Does anyone have an experience working in the middle east?

Post by James_0011 » Sat Dec 31, 2016 8:24 pm

Technical services. I'll go to any area as long as the pay is good. What type of jobs are available?

It seems difficult to find info about this online. It seems like they are mostly looking for engineers?

Also, what was the food like? Can you request any type of basic items you want? Meat, dairy, fruit, etc...

If 200k is possible, it seems like one would only have to work a few years to ere...

James_0011
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Re: Does anyone have an experience working in the middle east?

Post by James_0011 » Sun Jan 01, 2017 12:30 pm

I can't believe that no on else wants to do this or has??

It seems too good to be true, just grind it out for 3 years and you're at 600,000 usd or so....

jacob
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Re: Does anyone have an experience working in the middle east?

Post by jacob » Sun Jan 01, 2017 12:43 pm

Once you add in the risk of death or injury, the going rates look more reasonable, see e.g.

http://www.payscale.com/career-news/200 ... alary__1-2

James_0011
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Re: Does anyone have an experience working in the middle east?

Post by James_0011 » Sun Jan 01, 2017 1:18 pm

@jacob,

I see your point with driving a truck or a similar job where you must leave a protected area, but IT?

I assume you would be inside of a heavily guarded base?

TopHatFox
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Re: Does anyone have an experience working in the middle east?

Post by TopHatFox » Sun Jan 01, 2017 3:02 pm

This does seem fairly lucrative, especially if protected in a highly guarded base. Let us know what you find out.

Are there any business, non-technical roles available? :geek:

haha, I can see it now: "ERE convoy bombed to smithereens while on way for bagged lunch in local town"

James_0011
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Re: Does anyone have an experience working in the middle east?

Post by James_0011 » Sun Jan 01, 2017 6:43 pm

Yeah there are all kinds of jobs available. Here are a list of companies I found that hire for this sort of thing:

P.S aren't you studying geology? I'm sure you could find something with an oil company in the middle east and make bank.

AAR
AASKI Technology
ABM
Academi
Accent Controls
ATS - Acclaim Technical Services
ACCL
AEGIS (Garda)
Agility Logistics (PWC)
AECOM
AICI
Agile Defense
Akima (NANA)
Alion Science and Technology
ALC (AllWorld Language Consultants)
Alutiiq Corp (OCONUS)
AMEC Foster Wheeler
AMECO
American K-9 Detection Services
American Systems
ARINC now Rockwell Collins IM Services
ARKEL International
ARMA (GDIT)
ARTEL
ASRC Federal
ATCO Frontec
ATLAS Advisors
Avenge
BAE Systems
Baker Hughes
Barbaricum
B L Harbert
Battlespace Flight Services
Bear Defense Services
Bechtel
Bell Helicopter
Black & Veatch
Blue Force
Blue Hackle
Booz Allen Hamilton
Bravura
BRTRC
Buffalo Group
CACI
Caddell
CALIBRE
CALNET
Camber
Camp Dresser & McKee (CDM Smith)
Centerra Group (former G4S GS)
Central Asia Dev Group
Centurum
CGI
Chenega Corp
CH2M Hill
CHS (Comprehensive Health Services)
Chugach
Civilian Police Intl
Circinus
CLGT Solutions
Claxton Logistics
Coastal Intl Security
Cochise MTS
Cohort International
COI
Computer Sciences Corp (CSC)
Concurrent Technologies (CTC)
Constellis
Contrack Watts
Control Risks
Covenant Services Worldwide
Critical Intervention Services (CIS)
CSMI
CSRA
Cubic Corp
CWU (oconus)
Cyberspace Solutions
DECO
DAMCO (Maersk)
DAV Force
DFS Middle East
Downrange Operations & Training
DRS Technologies
DST
DTI (Drop Test Intl)
DUCOM
Dynamic Aviation
DynCorp International
Eagle Systems
ECC
Edinburgh Itnl
ELG FZE
EMW
Engility
EODT/Sterling Global (now Janus)
EOIR
EPS
Erinys International
Erikson Aviation
Espada Logistics & Security
Exelis (Harris)
ExLog Global
EXP
FAM International
FedSys Secure
Firebird AST
Firstar
FlightWorks
Fluor Corp
Four Horsemen Intl
Framaco
Frontier Services Group
FRS (Five River Services - NANA)
Fulcrum IT
Garda Security
General Atomics
General Dynamics
General Dynamics Information Technology
General Dynamics Land Systems
Gilbane Federal
Global Executive Management
Global Aerospace Logistics
Global Medical Guardians
Global Professional Solutions
Harris Corp
Hart International
Hawker Beechcraft - Cessna
HDR Inc
Heston Group
Hill Intl
Honeywell
Intecon
IAP Worldwide Services
ICS SERKA
Ideal Innovations
IDS International
Inmarsat Government (keyword: Afghanistan)
Infinite Solutions
InCadence Strategic Solutions
Inglett & Stubbs Intl
Information Systems Solutions
Insitu (keyword deployed)
Intelitrac
Intelligent Waves
International Management Services
International Medical Group
International SOS
IP Network Solutions
IPA
Jacobs
K2SI
K3 Enterprises
Kaseman (Michael Baker Intl)
Kay & Associates
KBR
Ke'aki Technologies
KGS
Kingfisher Systems
Kratos Defense & Security Solutions
Kwajalein Range Services
L-3 Communications
Leidos
Leonie Industries
Lockheed Martin
Logos Technologies
Louis Berger Services
MacAulay-Brown (MacB)
MAG Aerospace
Maginot Support Services
ManTech International
Markon Solutions
Marshal Group
M.C. Dean
McLane Advanced Technologies
Merlin Global Services
Mission 1st Group
Mission Essential
Mitre
MSA Security
MSI (Management Systems Intl)
MWH Global
MVM
NAVMAR Applied Sciences Corporation (NASC)
NCI Information Systems type Oconus
New Century
Northrop Grumman
NVE
Oak Grove Technologies
Obsidian Solutions Group
O'Gara (Training & Services)
Olgoonik Global Security
Olive Group Constellis
Osen-Hunter Group
OT Training Solutions
PAE Group
PAR Government
Parsons Corp
Patriot Group Intl
Pax Mondial
PD Systems
Pernix Group
PKL
Planate Management Group
Praemittias Group
Praescient Analytics
Praetorian Standard
ProSol Associates
Protection Strategies
QinetiQ North America
Quick Services
RA International Services
Radiance Technologies
Randstad (type MENA)
Ranger Land Systems
Raytheon
RDR
Resicum International
Recon International
Reed, Inc
Relyant
Remote Medical
Remote Project Services Group
Remote Site Jobs
Rockwell Collins
RPC Recruitment (Vacancies)
S & K Aerospace
Sabre Intl
SAIC
Salient CRGT
Sallyport Global (Michael Baker Intl)
San Juan Construction
Scientific Research Corp
SENTEL
SERCO
SGI Global
Skybridge Tactical
Sierra Nevada
Silverback7
Six 3 Systems (CACI)
SOC
SOS Intl
Sotera Defense Solutions
SRI
Streamline Defense
STG, Inc
STS Intl
Tapestry Solutions (Boeing)
TCOM
Team Crucible
TECHMIS
Telos Corp
Telum Protection Corp
Tetra Tech
Textron Aviation
TigerSwan
TII (Tactical Intelligence Intl)
Torres AES
Trace Systems
TransQuest
TribalCo
Triple Canopy
United Technologies
Unity LSS
Unity Resources Group
USA Environmental
USFalcon
Xator Corp
Vanquish Worldwide
Vectrus
Venatore
Vencore
Versar
Vetted Intl
ViaSat (location: OTHER)
Vigilant Canine Services
Vighter Medical Group
Vinnell Arabia
VSE Corp
VSC Security
VT Group
Walsingham Group
Wiser Company
Wyle Labs

The Old Man
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Re: Does anyone have an experience working in the middle east?

Post by The Old Man » Sun Jan 01, 2017 6:51 pm

James_0011 wrote:I see your point with driving a truck or a similar job where you must leave a protected area, but IT?
I assume you would be inside of a heavily guarded base?
@James_0011: If this is how you think, then you should reconsider the idea of war-zone jobs.

Remember that the insurgents have rockets and mortars and they use them, so protected zones are not 100% safe. Additionally, it is not uncommon for IT support to go to outlying posts to provide on-site support. That means they would be traveling outside the wire either by ground or air - which increases their vulnerability. They would have either a military escort or personal security, but the risk would not be eliminated.

Remember, that while the chance of death/injury is low. It is not zero. Protective measures can only make you a hard target, not completely eliminate the risk. Many civilians bailed rather than complete their tour. Military personnel, obviously, do not have that option. It is a VERY high stress environment.

While the pay is good, you need another reason to seek one of these jobs. Otherwise, you will bail.

I have not kept up to date on war zone jobs. These days the military presence is a shadow of its former self.

It is likely there are military contractor jobs in non-warzone areas. I am not up to date on these contractors.

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Stahlmann
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Re: Does anyone have an experience working in the middle east?

Post by Stahlmann » Sun Apr 01, 2018 2:54 am

I think google-fu for this query so...

As linking to the Wikipedia is pretty popular here:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pippa_Bacca

Not especially about working classical sense, but in ERE - surely.

If somebody inofoanarchised movie mentioned in footnotes, please contact. English verison/subtitles would be welcome.

Jason
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Re: Does anyone have an experience working in the middle east?

Post by Jason » Fri Apr 06, 2018 2:23 pm

My father-in-law did a lot a work in the Middle-east on water purification projects. It was not military based but for the public sector. I think it was primarily Saudi Arabia.

I recently came to understand why. Due to the current state of anti-intellectualism in the Muslim world: https://www.amazon.com/Closing-Muslim-M ... 1610170024, they have no local technological or manufacturing community to rely on. Even the pumping of their own oil. Everything is imported from the West.

Personally speaking, I wouldn't go work in a part of the world where you could wind up walking around with your own head in your hands for merely stating you believe in gravity.

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Stahlmann
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Re: Does anyone have an experience working in the middle east?

Post by Stahlmann » Wed Aug 07, 2019 4:55 pm

is some paper pushing jobs here (or in remote locations) available for not elite expat (in comparison to guys from this forum or MMM)?
or is it like slick guy "delegates" tasks from HVACed (?), comfy HQ in USA, Norway, Germany etc?
and the rest tears their butt off in Middle East?

Yes, I know about rigger and other really heavy physical jobs in oil, but it's not even about my "sissyness". I think they would simply filter out me at beginning of recruitment process based on my face :lol:

Tbh, I haven't read Oil101 so sorry for treating this topic as know it all oracle.
Yes, I see, USA (and their friends, so somehow "we" or our one unit :lol:) haven't invaded recently so it seems infrastructe got rebuilded (after stalking experience of few guys on LI).

BMF1102
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Re: Does anyone have an experience working in the middle east?

Post by BMF1102 » Wed Aug 07, 2019 5:39 pm

My BIL works in Afghanistan, for a private contractor. He is like a locksmith (all digital) for the base. He was in the Navy and his company only hires vets. He makes like $2500 take home a week when on the job and slightly less when home on break. His base/situation seems safe but he just told me last week some Afghani soldiers decided to shoot up the base (they were stationed on base) I think 3 or 4 people were killed. So keep in mind any area like that always has the possibility of violence. Luckily he is currently home on disability getting a knee fixed.
Just a real world example to ponder

white belt
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Re: Does anyone have an experience working in the middle east?

Post by white belt » Wed Aug 07, 2019 9:30 pm

I recently spent a month in Afghanistan on the military side and worked with a lot of contractors. I will provide you with my perspective.

First and most importantly, from now on think of working as a contractor as a lifestyle decision, more than just a job. The reason why will become apparent below.

Here are some details about the lifestyle:
1. You will work 12 hours a day, 7 days a week. You may get a day off every 2 weeks or so, or you may work everyday for 6 months straight. Things can get very monotonous.
2. If you are in a combat zone (Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan), your base will receive rocket and mortar fire pretty regularly, at a minimum a few times a week. This may mean you are locked down in your office, your room, or you have to wear body armor and helmet at certain times.
3. You will share communal bathroom with lots of other people and it may be located hundreds of feet from your room. You may have a roommate, although most of the contractors I knew had their own rooms. The building you live in may not be reinforced, which means you will have to run to a bunker outside if your base takes fire when you are in your room.
4. You will eat all of your meals at a government dining hall, unless you want to pay out of pocket for local food and risk the stomach upset. Although you will have a variety of meat, vegetable, fruit, and dessert options, the quality of food will generally be lower than what you are used to getting at a restaurant in the USA.
5. Most of your coworkers will be either military or other contractors (many of whom are former military). If you are used to white collar jobs or academia you may have a hard time relating to these people.
6. You will have access to a gym/fitness facilities, however it will be difficult or impossible to do any exercise outside.
7. There is no alcohol, no women, and on a smaller base no restaurants. Even the largest base in Afghanistan has maybe 3 restaurants on the entire base, 2 of which are Pizza Hut and Subway.
8. Entertainment is virtually non-existent, so you will have to come up with ways to use your time (hobbies, studying, watching Netflix, exercise). You will have to pay for your own wifi/data which will be more expensive and slower than anywhere in the USA.
9. You will get R and R, typically at a rate of 2 weeks off every 6 months (varies based on your contract).
10. All government bases get regular mail, which means you can order stuff from Amazon, but it will take 2-4 weeks to arrive.

If you think you can live with the above conditions for 6-12 months at a time, then the lifestyle may be a fit for you. Many contractors are veterans, but certainly not all of them. There are some contractors that have worked in the Middle East for 10+ years, so it's certainly possible to do this long term. A encourage you to take a long look at how this fits into your Web of Goals because it will be difficult to maintain stateside networks and relationships while you are over there.

Now let's get into the job specifics:

First off, what do you mean when you say technical services? Are we talking working IT/helpdesk, systems engineer, network engineer, fiber technician? These are all very different jobs and mean different things. A lot of this will depend on what skills you currently possess.

Understand that many contracting jobs require a security clearance. Do you have anything that would preclude you from getting a clearance such as previous drug use, legal issues, extensive foreign interests or contacts, and so on?

Your risk of death significantly increases if your job requires you to leave the wire. Ditto if you are working day to day with local nationals. Keep in mind US military are heavily armed when they leave compounds for a reason and you will probably not be able to carry a weapon as a contractor unless working in security. In the case of Afghanistan, we're talking about a place where telecommunications companies pay off the Taliban to not blow up their infrastructure. Outside the wire is a dangerous world and I would seriously do some thinking before accepting a position that requires you to regularly go outside base or into towns in a warzone. Traveling from base to base by helicopter or plane is relatively safe and the most common way that government personnel are transported at least in Afghanistan. To be honest, I'm unsure how many jobs these days require you to leave the wire in Afghanistan. In a country without active armed conflict (Kuwait, Qatar, UAE), your risk of death is significantly less and you probably will even be able to go into local towns and cities without any issues.

EDIT: I didn't realize this thread was so old, but hopefully the above information is useful to someone

Seppia
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Re: Does anyone have an experience working in the middle east?

Post by Seppia » Thu Aug 08, 2019 12:46 am

Fascinating post, thanks for sharing.

Jason
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Re: Does anyone have an experience working in the middle east?

Post by Jason » Thu Aug 08, 2019 4:08 pm

What is the pay? I'm trying to figure out why someone would do something like this. Outside "Pizza Hut" I couldn't find any legitimate reason. And the way it's described, by the time you run back zig zagging from live ammo with that shit, the cheese is going to be all over the place.

anesde
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Re: Does anyone have an experience working in the middle east?

Post by anesde » Thu Aug 08, 2019 5:48 pm

I’m not sure it has to be as bleak as that. There are finance and engineering jobs in the UAE or Qatar (read: not war zones) that pay very well. There’s no income tax there which is great if you’re anything other than an American. For US Citizens the first c. $90K of income can be tax free but you need to pay Uncle Sam for taxes above that.

Abu Dhabi and Dubai are two particular examples of where you can live very well and earn a lot, for certain white collar industries. They’re both suffering from excessive residential apartment supply so the cost of a great apartment is comparatively little.

Drawbacks are the location and the culture. From what I’m told it’s a pretty harsh distinction between western expats living a luxury lifestyle and Asian/Indian immigrants living in tough conditions.

For a non-US Citizen who can get the white collar job and live an ERE lifestyle it can be a fast way to a large stash. I have some European colleagues who worked in the UAE for a few years and they made out really well.

Campitor
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Re: Does anyone have an experience working in the middle east?

Post by Campitor » Thu Aug 08, 2019 6:43 pm

My Palestinian friend worked in Dubai for 3 years as a database administrator. He said the most frustrating part of the job was being sidelined whenever a Emirati suggested an idea regardless how bad it was. The best jobs and positions are given to Emiratis even if they are underqualified. He returned to the US after being told he would never advanced further up the ladder because he was a palestinian and not from the Emirates. Sad. He's a very smart guy and a huge bonus to any company that hires him.

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Lemur
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Re: Does anyone have an experience working in the middle east?

Post by Lemur » Wed Aug 14, 2019 8:33 am

Deployed in Afghanistan when I was in the military.

@White Belt

Post is pretty much spot on on what to expect.

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