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· 1:6 Noob
64 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)

Often lost in the Global War on Terror are the counter-terrorism efforts in Africa. US service members conduct training missions with the military forces of numerous African nations in order to help them combat terrorism within their own borders. Formerly under CENTCOM, missions in the Horn of Africa will now fall under the newly formed AFRICOM in addition to missions all over the continent.

The CJTF-HOA mission is focused on detecting, disrupting, and ultimately defeating transnational terrorist groups operating in the region - denying safe havens, external support, and material assistance for terrorist activity. Additionally, CJTF-HOA will counter the re-emergence of transnational terrorism in the region through civil-military operations and support of non-governmental organization operations - enhancing the long-term stability of the region. Its area of responsibility includes the total airspace and land areas of Kenya, Somalia, Sudan, Eritrea, Djibouti and Ethiopia in Africa, and Yemen on the Arabian Peninsula.

CJTF-HOA is comprised of Soldiers, Marines, Sailors, Airmen, civilians and partner nations. In addtion to Civil Affairs missions (drilling wells, medical care, renovation of schools and clinics, etc.), CJTF-HOA also conducts military-to-military training, which includes counterterrorism training

This is sort of my conceit project. The Marine is modeled after myself with as close approximations of the gear I actually wore when I was in Africa serving as a weapons trainer. I've included some reference pictures below. This is still a work in progress, I eventually intend to do some repainting, and add some minor details like patches etc. The African soldier is modeled closely off of a Djiboutian, however, I kept him pretty generic so he could be from anywhere. Also so he would be cheap, since he's really just a prop. Fortunately, African militaries aren't terribly well funded so he's actually pretty accurate. I got a chance to meet and work with military personnel from several countries. I've tried to make the poses as authentic as plastic would allow since I do this stuff for a living.

As they sit on the dresser

Observing and demonstrating the combat, or speed, reload.

The speed reload up closer.

Observing pistol handling with a demonstration with an M9. A big problem we often had was safe handling of pistols. Scary stuff, heh.

Close up of the proper combat draw technique. Didn't realize this one was blurry and I had already reposed the figures.

Observing shot groups on a target.

Figure breakdown:

Marine Trainer

Body - TS Jeff Gregorec
Boots - ACE Seal Team 10
Interceptor - Dragon
Uniform - ST
M16A4 - Dragon
M9 w/ lanyard - HT Moutain Ops
Pistol Holster - ACE SFOD
Shemagh - BS PMC Machine Gunner
Admin Pouch - HT II MEF
Grenade Pouch - HT II MEF
Drop Leg Panel- TS SEAL
Drop leg Pouch - SS ACU SAW Gunner
M16/M9 Ammo Pouches - TS
African market Oakley Knock-offs - BBi
Watch - HT MCCUU USMC Sniper
Caribiner - HT MCCUU USMC Sniper
Binos - Dragon
Flashlight - Dragon

African soldier

Body - TS Howard Max Mullen
BDU - Dragon Jamie
Belt - Dragon
Boots - TS Howard Max Mullen
AK-47 - Dragon
Beret - Dragon

Can't say I'm too enthusiastic about the Toy Soldier bodies. Their posability is frustratingly limited and their joints are loose. But the price was right since both of them cost me about as much as a single HT TrueType would have run me on EBay. Fortunately the "diorama" pose I had already picked out works perfectly. Eventually going to eliminate the bendy glove hands in favor of a pair of bendies with cloth gloves. Poor African guy ended up with a purple beret because I misinterpreted the color which I thought was going to be a dark red, heh. I also dislike the color and fit of the Dragon Coyote Interceptor OTV, but it was all I could find to work with. ST MARPAT isn't too bad. A little too much dark brown.

Hope you all enjoy these.

I'm also more than happy to provide any reference information people want as far as weapons and the Marine Corps for their own figures to the best of my knowledge. These are probably the only two I will ever do (famous last words, I know) since I'm not a "toy" guy. But I really enjoy looking at the various projects people create.

All Marines are myself except where faces are blurred out or not visible.

Reference photos:

Hard at work training:

· 1:6 Nam Nut
862 Posts
cool stuff and thanks for the reference pics. i spent some time in that part of the world, aint like home, thanks for your service. haha and thers nothing wrong with being a "toy guy", as long as when you meet her you dont tell her for a few months.

· wave man TDY staff
41,730 Posts
Perhaps the coolest thread of the year so far, and that's saying something. Much obliged for the nice bashes and inside look at a job most people know little about..

· 1:6 Noob
64 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks guys.

And I didn't mean anything negative by "toy guy". I just meant I don't collect things. Except books I guess, and they dominate all my shelf space, heh. I've been pretty impressed by the work I've seen here. There's some real artists. And I found a lot of help here identifying sources for parts, etc.

· 1:6 Noob
64 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks for the great feedback everyone. I added some extra information about the HOA mission up above.

A few more of the Marine figure by itself showing the individual details a bit better. Had to slit the stitching on the Saturday Toys sleeves to cuff them inside like that. The open cuff allowed better airflow through the uniform while protecting the skin which was important because in parts of the African desert it would get into the 130 range. And closer to the ocean it could be that hot and 100% humidity. Cuffing it inside is a cleaner look than rolling or folding them up outside and kept the sleeve off the hands.

Calling in "Range cold."

Firing stance.

Same stance from the other side

The firing stance is bladed more than it should be (angled), but that was the best I could do with the plastic body. I may have to suck it up and buy one of those TrueType re-releases this summer.

And because someone asked:

· Mandoll withdrawl
8,475 Posts
Great work, on EVERY count, JTAR. I remember looking at and saving a multitude of pictures from CJTF-HOA a few months ago, I wonder if I ever saw you in one of them.

Great work on the trainer and the allied trainee, and that last picture is a riot. Thanks for your service, and also the cool pictures.
I've been wondering about your avatar since you started posting so its nice to see it in a higher res so I don't have to squint anymore lol.
Man, I'm almost afraid to post now, but I will definitely be needing some pointers from you.

· 1:6 Noob
64 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Great work, on EVERY count, JTAR. I remember looking at and saving a multitude of pictures from CJTF-HOA a few months ago, I wonder if I ever saw you in one of them.
Possibly. Depends on when they were taken. I'm actually seen briefly a few times at the beginning of Dr. Danger's Djibouti episode, but the Dr. himself was late arriving, so we had only taken out a camera crew and a producer. So a few hours of sweating and hiking was reduced to a thirty second segment that didn't show hardly anything of our mission but handing out boxes of bottled water to local children, heh. The whole episode could be interesting to people looking for more information on the mundane activities of CJTF-HOA like civil affairs and humanitarian projects. The CJTF-HOA or Camp Lemonier websites are also good locations.

Though, I can imagine the draw of doing bashes on CJTF-HOA is somewhat low. ;)

I just happened to get picked for duty there. Not by choice, honestly. I had actually been looking to go to Iraq with one of the MiTTs. Three time volunteer for Iraq, volunteered for Katrina relief, volunteered during the San Diego fires last year. And the one time I said "No thanks", I got sent anyway. Haha. But I got to do and see some stuff that most people, Marines or otherwise, don't get to. Swam in the Indian Ocean, taught English to little kids at nights on my free time, worked on many humanitarian projects, drank Kenyan beer, ate camel and goat out of pink plastic bags, learned to speak some Somali, among other things. I figured I could bash something up outside the "norm" for 1/6th while having a fun little diorama to go on my Marine Corps shelf.

Glad some people found it interesting.
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