Training exercise BSB (Brigade Speciale Beveiligingsopdrachten)Featured

Training exercise BSB (Brigade Speciale Beveiligingsopdrachten)


Dog interception of ‘lone wolf’

Bagdad scenario: VIP visit to an outdoor public reception

The recon vehicle preliminary team enters the location in an armored car equipped with the heaviest grade of protection. The team’s initial assessment detects no visible threats in the operational zone. Next comes a vehicle team of armored cars containing the principle, her close protection and back up team. They deploy for a meet and greet with the local dignitaries. After the meet and greet few minutes as the principle is leaving a single male approaches her aggressively. The close protection team takes defensive action. From the back-up armored car, a SWAT dog-team deploys and intercepts the ‘loner’. The VIP is withdrawn from the area and taken to a safe house.

Exercise phase 2: VIP ambush

The recon vehicle checks the area and gives the green light for the VIP vehicles to enter the zone. VIP car and back up car enters and are intercepted by a VBIED. There is an explosion and the VIP vehicle is disabled. Enemy fighters (tangos) open fire. Back up car moves into position and the VIP is extracted to the backup car. CPT provides cover fire, as the VIP is taken out of the danger zone and back to a safe house.

Hard arrest in Rotterdam

After police intelligence revealed that a dangerous and armed suspect was barricaded in a Rotterdam house, the BSB were deployed to solve the situation. Lt Colonel Hardenbol, the unit’s commanding officer at that time tells how the arrest team entered the building and was confronted with the suspect pointing a handgun at them. From behind protective ballistic shields the BSB operator ordered the suspect to drop the weapon and get down on the ground. The suspect ignored the commands, but also held his fire. After the suspect ignored more commands, the operator decided to stop the threat.


He shot the suspect twice in the arm with his Glock. The injuries prevented the suspect’s finger from pulling the trigger, but did not kill him. The BSB were then able to quickly overpower the man and arrested him. Another option for the operator would have been to kill the suspect, but this was a less than desirable option for the team according to Lt Col Hardenbol.

The BSB is a special unit of the Koninklijke Marechaussee and is loosely based on the structure of the German special federal police special unit GSG 9. The unit is located at a former airbase, behind multiple layers of ultra high security. It comprises of roughly 400 personnel consisting of four teams.

VIP protection

Protecting high value principles, such as embassy personnel in volatile environments, military-NATO staff and individuals at high risk. Often the BSB work with the Dienst Koninklijke en Diplomatiek Beveiliging, which is specifically tasked for protecting royals and diplomats.


Observation of suspects inside and outside the Netherlands. Reconnaissance of locations for future deployment and evaluating potential threats.


  • Assisting local police in hi-risk operations and arrests
  • Contributing to the Dienst Speciale Interventie (DSI) a unit formed under the umbrella of the Ministry of home affairs to tackle large-scale terrorist threats and incidences of violence. The DSI is also formed from units of the Unit Interventie Mariniers (UIM) a and police arrest teams

Special tasks

  • Protecting witnesses and convicted criminals under threat
  • Money transport protection for the Dutch Bank
  • Customs service support
  • Border protection (boarding ships, airport deployments and aircraft operations)
  • Protecting sensitive buildings and important structures during periods of vulnerability or threat
  • Covert operations that are mostly classified such as working for the Ministry of Justice, security services and the National Coordinator of Counter Terrorism (NCTb)
  • Mentoring and instruction


One of the team leaders, sergeant Major (Ed): “ultra flexibility is a requirement of all BSB operators.” Operators are drawn from the Koninklijke Marechaussee (KMar), the Royal Military Police, also from the 11 Airmobile (Air Assault) Brigade, the Marines Unit Interventie Mariniers (UIM), a navy Counter Terrorism unit and the Korps Commandotroepen KCT (the army Special Forces). Regular police SWAT officers, observation teams or close protection teams of the Dutch police force can also apply to the unit. This provides the BSB with a good mix of specialties, for example if operating in urban, jungle, arid or maritime environments. Selection begins with an interview with a psychiatrist. If the candidate is suitable to go further, they enter a three-day training. The team members evaluate if the candidate will fit into the unit. If he is successful, the candidate will enter 25 weeks of training.

This training consists of:

  • CQB
  • Shooting
  • Vehicle and boat driving
  • Observation techniques
  • Martial arts Krav Maga (developed in Israel) based on boxing and street fighting and Systema fighting developed in Russia (hand to hand, grappling, using knives and firearms).
  • OT and AOE

To be an effective operator in the BSB:

Individuals must be an expert in vehicle driving on land and water, weapons handling and fighting, but also be able to be invisible such as in a restaurant when guarding a VIP. Operators must be able to work and communicate with diplomats. They must recon countries in a state of anarchy and act without any backup to evaluate hospitals and other key locations.

Weapons used

Glock 26 and 17

FN P90



HK 53

HK 416

Diemaco C7 & C8

40mm under slung grenade launcher

FN Minimi


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  1. Laurens
    19 augustus 2012 at 19:42

    Heel interessant stuk over de BSB!
    Helaas hoor je er niet zo veel over terwijl het toch een prachtig onderdeel is van onze strijdkrachten.

    Hopelijk komen er af en toe wat meer stukken over.

    Gr. Laurens

  2. Gian Diego Comunello
    12 april 2013 at 00:06

    About training of that Special Unit what’s the meaning of the acronims OT and AOE?

  3. Radja
    5 mei 2013 at 13:44

    The meanings of those acronims are,
    OT: Observatieteam AOE: Aanhoudings en ondersteuningseenheid.
    So OT means observation team and AOE or simpely AT what stands for Arrestatieteam is hard arrest team who can operate in mutch of special situation in the Netherlands such as resceu hostages arrest someone who wanna commit suicide or secure some one who is in live danger, also they can be a advisor for other special police units.

  4. Franko
    22 juni 2013 at 10:16

    De BSB

    Bsbers zijn vakmensen en de beste in hun werk, dat zijn professionals.

    Ik wens ze alle succes met wat ze doen. zet hem op jongens , klasse.

    Gr ,


  5. Jan
    8 april 2015 at 21:34

    Ik word volgend jaar 60. Dit had ik eerder moeten weten om kinderen en kleinkind te beschermen. Prima job. Ga zo door.

  6. Martijn
    8 augustus 2015 at 18:47

    Ik heb bijna 6 jaar bij de pantserinfanterie gewerkt en ben in verschillende functies tweemaal op uitzending geweest. Nu sinds enige jaren werkzaam bij de landmacht al algemeen militair verpleegkundige. Mij lijkt BSB heel interessant werk. Is de overstap goed te maken? Of heeft de BSB het liefst alleen mensen die alleen maar bij een gevechtseenheid hebben gewerkt?

  7. Daan
    27 september 2015 at 19:03

    Ze zoeken niet perse militairen in gevechtsfunctie,
    je hebt alleen wel een FPS aanstelling nodig en een functie binnen Defensie, ik denk dat de overstap wel te maken is maar de opleiding tot is fysiek zwaar en mentaal nog zwaarder. Er is nog wel een vacature vrij op -> vacatures -> medewerker BSB.
    Ik hoop dat je hier wat aan hebt!

    7 november 2016 at 20:01

    Hoeveel x per jaar is de bsb opleiding en welke datums gaan die van start?

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