Costa Rica Receives Virtual Shooting Ranges from the United States

first_imgBy Julieta Pelcastre/Diálogo August 18, 2017 The U.S. Department of State donated six virtual shooting ranges to the Costa Rican Ministry of Public Security (MSP, per its Spanish acronym). The technology will contribute to the training and professional development of the various public security bodies for the improvement of their emergency response capability. The donation, valued at almost $800,000, was made by the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs through the U.S. Embassy in Costa Rica, as part of the cooperation agreements between the two countries. The new equipment was presented to Costa Rica on July 7th at a ceremony at the National Police Academy in San José. The gathering was attended by Costa Rican Minister of Public Security Gustavo Mata, and the then U.S. ambassador, Stafford Fitzgerald Haney. “By [the third week of August] at the latest, we will begin officially training the first units,” Commissioner Erick Lacayo Rojas, the director of the Costa Rican National Police Academy, told Diálogo. “With this virtual system we will improve our systems for officer education, training, and specialization,” he said. “We don’t intend for this to replace firearms practice. Nevertheless, the technology will help improve the instruction of officers in stressful and delicate situations, with the goal of improving their response capacity.” Cutting edge technology Every virtual simulator includes software and three screens that recreate various 180-degree scenarios. It allows for the inclusion of outdoor conditions such as lighting, the wind, weather, distance, physical spaces, and ammunition trajectory. The personnel doing the security work will put operational protocols into practice, and reinforce their legal knowledge as well as their knowledge on the use of force and of human rights, which is required when using tools employed by police and military agencies throughout the world. “This type of technology will give them the opportunity to not only fire at different distances but also know when they don’t have to fire,” Minister Mata stated. “Using a firearm is indispensable for a police officer.” The simulation systems will provide the instructor with a detailed report on the performance of the police officer, including the number of shots fired and response time. Each trainee will also learn how they react when confronted with a dangerous situation or a criminal act. The U.S. government support will also include training on the use of the virtual shooting ranges for 10 representatives from each of the police departments comprising MSP. Personnel from the National Police Academy, the Police Force, the Air Surveillance Service, the National Coast Guard Service, the Border Police, and the Correctional Officer Force will serve as certified instructors for other officers in their respective institutions. New scenarios will also be designed relating to criminal activity facing the country, such as clandestine airstrip use, gender violence, assault, kidnapping, hostage taking, kidnapping, and carjacking. Better preparation at a lower cost The donation will contribute to the reduction of costs in the teaching and evaluation of officers. “It is easier to create a virtual reality prototype, in which different Police Force teams can participate than to create a realistic scenario. That is more costly for the training process,” Luis Álvarez, director of Álvarez Integrated Systems, a security training company collaborating with the Costa Rican MSP, told Diálogo. “The use of virtual shooting ranges results in high costs savings. In Costa Rica, a 50-round box of nine-millimeter ammunition costs around $25,” Álvarez said. “In a virtual system, 50 shots can be fired in less than 10 minutes. In a real shooting range, you need to supply the ammunition on a regular basis.” “With one dollar they can acquire the resources to operate the virtual simulator and use it 500 times,” Commissioner Lacayo said. “This way we can integrate real practice while staying under budget, and get better results in real-time decision making.” The V-180 simulator is more valuable for training than a firearms simulator with only one screen. The realistic training platform produces better decision-making in life-or-death situations, saving the lives of civilians and officers, according to information from Virtra, the company responsible for maintaining the shooting ranges. “We should use the tool in a logical, academic manner; we have had an important preview of its implementation, how evaluations will be done, and how we’ll measure the impact of our scenarios,” Commissioner Lacayo stated. “It’s not just about coming to the shooting range and firing. The trainees must go through an academic and practical training process. The more training the better the teacher,” Álvarez added. According to MSP, in addition to the six virtual shooting ranges, other equipment is scheduled to come from the U.S. government. The equipment that will arrive in November includes two 110-foot vessels, two Sky Troop airplanes, three helicopters and three tactical vehicles. “All this equipment will improve the skills, capacities, and the professionalism of our officers who look after the security of this country, day in and day out,” concluded Minister Mata.last_img read more

Humility and Witness

first_img 28 Views   no discussions Tweet Share Photo credit: katenasser.comThis weekend I would like to explore two qualities in John the Baptist that are worth noting, namely, his humility and his witness. I am not the one, he made it clear; that someone is coming after me. He is greater than I. I am not worthy to untie his sandal straps, He will do things I cannot do.John was not tempted to detract in any way from the significance of Jesus. He wasn’t the real thing, he insisted; he was just a forerunner — and he was fully content with that. And there you have the first and perhaps the most important element in humility. Humility is standing in the truth. It is being just what you are, and only that, without falsification or distortion. Another way of putting this is to say that humility means a just estimate of oneself. If you were Picasso, for example, it would not a mark of humility to say: “I can just about hold a paint brush.” On the other hand, it would be a mark of humility to say: “I know a few things about painting.” Not ‘everything,’ you note. Who knows everything?The people who enshrine humility and disclose it for the rest of us are people who are really good at what they do (about goodness itself, too) and say ‘all I know is a little about this or a little about that,’ where a little is a great deal. Humility is seeing oneself or evaluating oneself “in the broad scheme of things.” You can see how far removed it is from putting yourself down or making yourself a doormat and letting people walk all over you.John was a humble man. He was also a witness, that is, he publicly attested to what he believed. Witness is a public activity or a public stance. Jesus was therefore a witness. Indeed, from the point of view of faith, he was the primary witness. He who sees me, he said openly, sees the Father. The thief on the cross and the centurion on the ground also gave witness — public testimony — to Jesus crucified.Public witness may or may not involve speech. It does not mean that all you talk about all the time is what you believe. If you did that, people would soon avoid being where you were. They would walk away from the water-cooler when they saw you coming.On the other hand, witness is not silence. It is a public attestation. Thus, I cannot prefer silence to being public. That is close to being ashamed of bearing witness. I must have the courage to speak when speech is required or when speech is necessary.I have always admired street preachers. What they do takes a great deal of courage, considering how easily they are dismissed and how indifferently the public usually treats them.The best witness, of course, is public example. If your public self is genuinely your real self, your witness has integrity. The real self need not be perfect, of course. What matters is approximation. The closer you approximate to your ideals, the more influential your witness becomes.The martyr has always been considered the ideal witness – understandably, of course. When I give my life for what I believe, I give my all. I have nothing left to give.Many people do that too without dying, which is perhaps more routinely difficult witness — the daily witness, one day after another, in public and in private, That is both rare and special, and I am sure we know many people like that. They resemble John the Baptist in that their lives point beyond themselves. They go before the One they serve, and they do so without fuss, in fidelity and humility.By: Father Henry Charles PhD Sharing is caring!center_img Share Share FaithLifestyleLocalNews Humility and Witness by: – December 12, 2011last_img read more

Amazing Maria chasing Group One hat-trick in Matron Stakes

first_img David O’Meara’s filly has proved beyond doubt there was no fluke about her shock victory in the Duke of Cambridge Stakes at Royal Ascot by securing back-to-back top-level triumphs in the Falmouth Stakes at Newmarket and the Prix Rothschild at Deauville. Amazing Maria is joined on the trip from Britain by the Marco Botti-trained Euro Charline, last seen finishing fourth when defending her crown in the Beverly D. Stakes at Arlington Park in Chicago. Press Association Amazing Maria is set to face nine rivals when she bids to complete a Group One hat-trick in Saturday’s Coolmore Fastnet Rock Matron Stakes at Leopardstown.center_img The home team is headed by 1000 Guineas and Nassau Stakes heroine Legatissimo. David Wachman’s stable star had the option of taking on the boys in the Qipco Irish Champion Stakes on the same card, but instead sticks to her own sex and drops back in distance to the mile. The supplemented Ainippe is an interesting contender for Ger Lyons, stepping up in class following a couple of Group Three successes this summer. Brooch, Iveagh Gardens, Military Angel, Raydara and Steip Amach complete the Irish contingent, with Alain de Royer-Dupre’s French raider Cladocera rounding off the field. last_img read more

Relive your Childhood: Diecast and Model Show coming to Letterkenny

first_imgExcitement is building for the inaugural Diecast and Model Show coming to Letterkenny next month.The event will see working models of miniature tractors, cars, lorries and other machinery running through parts of the Radisson Blu Hotel on Sunday the 8th of October 2017.Farm model enthusiasts are all welcome to admire the top-quality displays in operation. Traders from all over Ireland, and as far away as Cork, are coming to Donegal for the show.All proceeds after expenses will be donated to the NCBI, Ireland’s national sight loss agency. Admission for adults is €5, children under 14 go free.Co-organiser Raymond Holmes of Ideal Farm Models told Donegal Daily that there are already huge levels of interest in the event. “This will not only be for children, adults especially are reliving their childhood again and seeing the models they used to have or have always wanted.“Maybe they are farmers who have a real model in the yard and want a smaller version. There will be something for everyone,” he said.Raymond said there is a large catchment area in Donegal where people have an interest in diecast models.“This is something that will attract a big crowd,” he said, adding that craftspeople are welcome to get in touch to inquire about setting up stalls.The event is sponsored by Ideal Farm Models, Linton Film Productions and Breffni Crafts.For updates follow the Facebook page:… Relive your Childhood: Diecast and Model Show coming to Letterkenny was last modified: September 4th, 2017 by Rachel McLaughlinShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:Diecast and Model showeventsfarmingfundraisingncbilast_img read more