I’m writing calmly, but I am on the verge of a mental breakdown. I silently cried on my way to the terminal today and once our drivers brought me back to our campus, I went in my room and cried harder swallowed a Valium and went to bed. I only felt the relaxing effects of this medication, but I never really slept as the day was packed with issues.
I wish I had dozed off into oblivion last night or this morning. Maybe it’s the reason for my distress or a year of breaking doors and creating opportunities just to find out I am back to negative one hundred did me in. The badging process in this country is ridiculous. I can’t stand it. I can’t stand the Vetting Bureau I can’t stand Mitch. Yeah, I named that douche. Makes no sense to hide Satan’s best friend’s identity.
Have you ever watched the animated movie Asterix & Obélix? Precisely, Les 12 travaux d’Astérix when he tries to retrieve le laissez-passer A-38 in an office that drives people crazy. It’s a parody on bureaucratic organizations such as ministries, permit offices, clinics, where obtaining any support or documents is nearly impossible. It’s like trying to apply for a handicapped sign for your car. There are so many documents to fill, you have to go from one office to another, receive approval from one department and then go downstairs to another to receive a new form, get a stamp, give blood, become an organ donor, give an organ, sell your first born, mortgage your house and maybe they will put you on a waiting list but all the while they know you are a handicapped person. They know your require special attention and needs. Do they care? No. Does it drive you crazy? Certainly.
Well, Astérix and Obélix seek le laissez-passer A-38, were the office personnel along with a bunch of crazies redirects them to multiple offices where they have to apply for other laissez-passer to obtain the coveted A-38. After Astérix hands are full of passes and they are nowhere near obtaining A-38, he loses it and nearly falls into folie. But instead of following suit he decides to fuck with their minds and invent an inexistent laissez-passer, drives all the bureaucrats into frenzy where suddenly a man who wants to restore order from chaos gives him what he’s been requesting from the get go. It was in HIS pocket. The whole time an easy solution, but no they had to create this drama while it was in his pocket. Mind boggling.
Astérix and Obélix both leave with their sanity. Lucky them.
I fear I might not. Working with military factions and their subsidiaries mirrors this cartoon. I’ve been fighting for a year to create an easier process to obtain badges for our South African crew that I don’t even like. I succeeded, but after a year these nutters have brought the process to the most ridiculous level. It’s harder than ever.
You must fill a form in Word and save it, not just with the current version but 97-2003.
If it is not saved as such your application is rejected.
You have to send an email to the Pass Office who saves your docs (not docx) in a classified folder where The Vetting Bureau can retrieve the information. One of the applications must be signed by a Sponsor who lives on the military camp you wish to enter. Can’t just be anyone it has to be an OF-4- Colonel. Basically, you have to chase a very important man just to sign a stupid piece of paper, so I can present that document only twice a week between 10-11am to this douche bag who will then announce whether he has seen your sent forms in the system.
If not your application is rejected.
You cannot resend your documents to them directly, no that’s comment sense. Why use that? You have to send it to another department. Plus, you have to wait for the next meeting which is usually at intervals of 3-4 days and receive another verdict.
Other rejection reasons are:
You didn’t place a dot at the right place the computer cannot read this application.
You wrote n/a or no instead of none on the application.
They don’t like you.
They don’t like your company.
He hates all nationalities.
This can last for weeks until they decide the application has been filled correctly, just so they can give you an interview date 5 weeks later to which the Pilot’s rotation is already over and you have to start the process once he returns. Their rotations are 6 weeks. Do the math.
It doesn’t end there, even if you have an interview scheduled and confirmed they will switch the dates with no notice and for some kind of reason it’s our staff’s fault for missing their interviews. Sometimes they say they arrived late, all kinds of excuses just to fuck with you.
The vetting interview is futile. They need to identify if you are part or have ties with the Talibans, ex-militia or terrorist groups. Please, most Afghans have ties with the Talibans. They are trying to catch the liars who will blow us up, but really they allow the ANA with weapons and can’t even find sleeper agents through their ranks where incidents such as American Advisors get shot or ISAF soldiers are murdered by Afghans.
I had found a way to bypass all this nonsense and go through a simple 24 hour process. Too easy. Well, they have just drafted an anti-Beige Burka SOP (Standing Orders Procedures) against all logic. TCNs (Third Country Nationals) are not allowed to receive ISAF Badges because they are not part of NATO.
I hear racism too. I hear you. It’s outrageous.
I’m exhausted and that’s not even the tip of the iceberg of my distress.
I’m taking a break.
Hmmm. Did I mention I was only trying to have I.D. cards issued for our staff?