Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Home Defense: Shotguns and Very Bad Advice

I like shotguns. Shooting skeet with a 20 gauge gives me great pleasure. I love the smell, the kick, and the power I feel when shooting a 12 gauge. I can remember the silly statement made by our Vice President, Joe Biden, “Just get a shotgun.” His idea is that you can defend yourself effectively with a shotgun. The mere sound of wracking a pump action should be enough.
“If you want to protect yourself, get a double-barrel shotgun,” Biden said in an interview with Parents Magazine back in February 2013. “You don’t need an AR-15. It’s harder to aim, it’s harder to use, and in fact, you don’t need 30 rounds to protect yourself. Buy a shotgun. Buy a shotgun.”
In the magazine “Field and Stream” in 2013 he said:
“I said, ‘Well, you know, my shotgun will do better for you than your AR-15, because you want to keep someone away from your house, just fire the shotgun through the door.’ Most people can handle a shotgun a hell of a lot better than they can a semi-automatic weapon in terms of both their aim and in terms of their ability to deter people coming.”
I’m afraid that about 99% of instructors would have to disagree with the Vice President. I say he doesn’t have a clue about weapons. He may have shot an AR and a shotgun, but he doesn’t understand defending yourself with these weapons.
Using a shotgun effectively requires that you know how it works in all scenarios. Here is some practical applications of shotguns. Despite popular belief, shotguns should be treated as a precision tool at close ranges. At actual self-defense ranges of 3-7 yards where shotguns are used for home defense, shotguns need to be aimed like a rifle; the gun shop commando mythology of “point and pray” simply does not work. Shotguns must be aimed like a rifle.
Many feel that the “spread” of a shot means you don’t have to aim it. That would be false. Like most guns, if you want to hit something, you’d better aim. Most people do not own or shoot automatic weapons, but the misconception is that you can lay down effective fire with a spray. This, like a shotgun blast, is a myth. (This is why the Army infantry teaches 3 round bursts from modern fully automatic military weapons.)
Determine what your pattern is for your shotgun. Many, but not all, shotguns firing a specific 00 buckshot load at 3 yards creates a shot pattern roughly the size of a silver dollar. When the distance increases to 5 and 7 yards the pattern wasn’t much larger than the palm of your hand. Now that is a general statement. Your mileage may vary.
You’ll also see a large hole in the target that most people don’t think a great deal about, caused by the wadding/shot cup of the particular load. The wadding is typically made out of plastic these days, but has been made of cardboard or even wood. This is one thing you should consider, how wildly erratic and the inconsistent behavior of the wad/shot cup has from shot to shot. While it isn’t likely you’d ever be in a position where you might have to use a shotgun to “take out” a hostage taker, it’s a little disconcerting to think that you could put every pellet on the bad guy, but still seriously lacerate or even or blind a hostage with the wadding, which can leave a nasty shallow wound. Just remember the wad does come out of the muzzle at a fast velocity and is dangerous.
The problem with a shotgun, or really any weapon shot indoors, is that most wall board walls will not stop a round. You need to be aware of this and act and train accordingly. Shooting a shotgun at a threat at 10 yards with 00 buck shot could very well miss and go through a wall toward innocents on the other side. I know for a fact that a 9mm 115 grain FMJ round will go through ¾ in plywood AND a 2/4 piece of lumber from 400 yards. So you can imagine a 00 buckshot that misses the intended target at 10 yards. This is very important to remember.
Like I said before, I like shotguns. I don’t use one as a home defense weapon but there is always one handy around our front door. I do NOT advocate the Vice President’s advice about shooting through a door. I would really hate to deliver pizza to his house! Every home defense instructor will tell you that it’s imperative to have target identification when using a weapon. That’s why a good flash light is an important piece of gear for home defense. You would not want to shoot a family member would you? Maybe a drunk neighbor in the wrong back yard? Maybe a teenager coming home late, or early? You never know. Target identification could save you and someone else from a very bad experience! Don’t shoot through a door. Not only that, do you know that the person on the other side of the door is armed? You would never know what might be coming back at you. It’s nice to know that stupidity remains in politics.
When considering a shotgun for self-defense, do your homework. Research and get correct information. Get good training and then practice. Learning discretion would be smarter than listening to a Vice President of the United States!
Semper Paratus
Check 6
Burn

Situational Awareness: The OODA Loop in Action

This article is the perfect example of situational awareness. If you know anything about the OODA Loop you will see this as a great example. (see blog The OODA Loop: Combat Concept 3/20/14)
“Teens in a mob assault and rob Center City patrons
By Mike Newall
Philadelphia Inquirer Staff Writer
The two young women were sitting at a window table inside the Max Brenner restaurant on 15th Street, near Walnut, sharing chocolate fondue after some shopping. The streets were vibrant. The weather was nice. ”The city had a good vibe,” remembered one of the women, Maria, who requested her full name not be printed. But their night on the town was about to become frightening. Heading their way was a pack of teens roving through Center City after leaving a North Philadelphia music festival. They were part of about 100 or more young people who had left Saturday night’s event, police said, committing a series of violent assaults and robberies, including one against Maria, 25, of North Philadelphia, and her cousin Cecilia, 29, of Havertown….
…..Maria and Cecilia were enjoying their dessert at Max Brenner, with its large, open bay doors. Afterward, Maria, an interior and industrial designer, had planned to visit a Northern Liberties art exhibit. Cecilia was heading home. The women had spent the afternoon dress shopping. Maria is getting married soon. About 10 p.m., Maria said, she saw a shirtless teenager run past the restaurant. ”He was running in the middle of the street and looked like he was running away from someone,” she said. Maria tucked away her phone and wallet, which had been sitting on the table. She grew up in Brazil, she said, and was more street-smart than her cousin. Before she could tell Cecilia to put her cell phone away, another teen reached through the window and snatched it. Maria ran out after him. She was on the sidewalk, starting to scream “thief,” she said, when someone from behind punched her in the jaw. She said she turned, jaw throbbing, to see the girl who had hit her standing with five other teens. “What are you going to do?” she said the girl who had punched her yelled. The teens were laughing, she said. “They were fearless. It seemed like they weren’t taking anything serious.”…
See the OODA pattern? Maria’s OODA loop worked for her. Her cousin, not so much.
What was obvious to recognize is how quickly Maria observed the situation, oriented towards it, decided, and then acted to put her phone and wallet away. It’s impressive and uncommon in the US and it allowed her to protect her possessions.
How will you use situational awareness for your protection? Or maybe your families protection?
Implement the OODA Loop in your own life and teach it to your family. You and they will be better prepared.

Semper Paratus
Check 6
Burn

Monday, January 26, 2015

Preparedness: A Desperate Appeal

As one of the worst snow storms looms on the NE I have to ask, are you prepared? Media usually is no help here. From “Doomsday Preppers” to “Naked and Afraid” the people of North America are subject to watching those “nuts” on TV. That’s because if TV did a real show on preparedness it would do two things: 1. “Scare” people and 2. Be boring as heck. Preparing is not glamorous or exciting.
In a poll done by the Discovery channel in 2012 it was found that 85% of Americans were underprepared. When asked what they thought would happen in the U.S. in the next 25 years the top responses were significant earthquake, 64%, significant hurricane, 63%, and terrorist attack, 55%. When asked how many years from the time of the survey they thought this would happen the top response was 17% at less than a year, 17% 20 to 99 years, and 17% 10-19 years. 16% said never.
The Doomsday Preppers Survey was conducted by Kelton Research between January 3rd and January 10th, 2012 using an email invitation and an online survey. Quotas are set to ensure reliable and accurate representation of the total U.S. population ages 18 and over.
While millions may be preparing, and over half of Americans expect a major catastrophic natural or man-made event to occur in the course of their lifetimes, at least 25% of Americans – fully 80 million – have taken no active steps to prepare themselves for disaster because they simply don’t believe it’s a possibility.
My guess is that these overwhelmingly under-prepared individuals will be the first ones screaming for FEMA to give them food.
To give you an idea, in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy in 2012 within 3 days the system began to break down as transportation systems in large metro areas came to a halt. The only supplies available were being distributed by the National Guard and availability was so thin that FEMA had to place emergency orders for more food. There was no clean water, no gas, and grocery stores had been cleaned out to the point that people resorted to digging through the trash just to find a meal
The Congressional EMP Commission in 2012 estimates that, given the nation’s current unpreparedness, within one year of an EMP attack, (or a grid down situation) two-thirds of the U.S. population — 200 million Americans — would probably perish from starvation, disease and societal collapse.
As members of the Mormon Church, we have been warned about being prepared since the 1937 April Conference.
"Let every head of every household see to it that he has on hand enough food and clothing, and, where possible, fuel also, for at least a year ahead...." (President J. Reuben Clark, Jr., April 1937 General Conference)
Every prophet since 1937 has spoken about preparedness. Most recently, President Thomas S. Monson said:
“We should remember that the best storehouse system would be for every family in the Church to have a supply of food, clothing, and, where possible, other necessities of life.” Thomas S. Monson, 1st Presidency Message, September 2014
If you are not prepared and you are a member of the Church what’s your problem? I mean I don’t know how much clearer we as members need a warning! I want to be rude and say, “Are you stupid?” but I won’t.
Everyone has excuses. I’ve heard them all from real reasons to ridicules excuses. When we were first married, my wife had only been a member 5 years. When we moved into our first apartment she brought buckets of wheat. Little did she know that this was the beginning of her being an expert in cooking with food storage. We were in the military several years and we maintained a food storage. We have been through difficult and lean financial years, yet we still found the funds and the room for being prepared. There are very few reasons that I could accept for NOT working on preparedness. It can be done. It should be done. Have a plan and work your plan. I realize that plans will change with circumstances. We sent out a missionary and married off several kids while maintaining our preparedness. I know from personal experience it can be done. So what’s stopping you?
The opposite of fear is faith. What it takes is a small plan. Look at the basics (shelter, water, food, fire, security). Start small and build upon it. Find a place for your preparedness items. Take and maintain an inventory. Sacrifice for this and you will be blessed. Review your plan every 6 months to a year and adjust or expand it as necessary. Learn a new skill each year. Practice some of those skills. Involve your whole family and make it fun.
Every head of household in the Church should be ensuring the three P’s spoken of in The Proclamation. Preside, provide, and protect. Part of this responsibility is preparedness and self-sufficiency. I plead with you, do this. Start today and commit.

Semper Paratus
Check 6
Burn

Saturday, January 24, 2015

LDS Gunsite Turns 1!


January 27 marks a year that LDS Gunsite has been up and running. I started this site for several reasons. One is my own selfish need to communicate to someone things that I’ve learned. As I’ve said before, I looked for a site like this one. I’ve had the wonderful opportunity of knowing, training with, and learning from some of the most highly trained and experienced operators and specialists in the military and law enforcement worlds. Most of them happened to be members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, or Mormons. Mormons have a fascinating history that involve guns and defense. There are characters and events that are related to guns and defense that are in modern and ancient scripture and history of the Church. From Moroni to John Browning to Orrin Porter Rockwell. So I think that as LDS members we have a unique perspective of defense and preparedness. That is why I created this site.
I also wanted to address my thoughts about training and preparedness. As I’ve said many times before, and will again, training trumps gear.
I go to the range often. My favorite song is “Home on the Range.” Seriously I do have a crazy range thing that drives my wife nuts I think. I train a lot. I say a lot but if you talk to certain people they would scoff at twice a week. I will train in rain, cold, or blistering heat. We don’t get snow so I don’t have experience with training in snow. I also don’t train in dark as much as I’d like.
I go to the range to think, pick up brass, and just enjoy the “atmosphere”. I love the smell of spent ammo. The smell of gunpowder in the air. I love the sound of many different calibers being shot simultaneously. I love the unique differences between and AK and AR variant rifle. The range is a place where I can relax and get in touch with the outdoors. I used to do this camping but don’t have as much time to camp as I used to. I know, the above description of my love for a gun range is bordering on insane, but some men work with wood, some men hunt or fish, some men golf or get into sports, me, I love to hear the "ting" of a round hitting a steel target.
Take your loved ones to the range. Your kids will love it. Last Christmas my family was all together. We have a large family and I was amazed we could all work it out to spend Christmas together. We went to the range together and it was a lot of fun. Watching my adult kids shoot and put into practice what they were taught as young kids did my heart good! Everyone likes the gun range. Not many have a thing like I do for it, but most people will go shoot guns when given the chance. Use this opportunity with your friends and family to teach safety and good gun habits. Even though most of my kids don't see a gun range very often, they know what they've been taught about safety and shooting.
I hope this site has been a help and service to you. I hope you and others have learned something. My only regret is I haven't received a lot of feedback or ideas from you the readers. That may be my bad management of a blog, but I would like to learn from all of you out there. If you have any ideas for an article or something you would like to see please let me know. I say this for anyone, but especially for my LDS brothers and sisters out there. Maybe you would like to write an article yourself. That would be great too! And very welcome! Please maintain anonimity if you write, and know that I reserve the right to edit. I don't foresee a big problem with inappropriate things coming across my screen.
Thank you for your views and reading of this lame little blog. I hope to continue to serve.

Semper Paratus
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Friday, January 23, 2015

Happy Birthday John Boyd: The OODA Loop

Colonel John Richard Boyd was born on January 23, 1927. He was a United States Air Force fighter pilot and Pentagon consultant of the late 20th century, whose theories have been highly influential in the military, business, and many other areas.
During the 1950s, John Boyd dominated fighter aviation in the U.S. Air Force. His fame came on the wings of the quirky and treacherous F-100; the infamous "Hun." Boyd was known throughout the Air Force as "Forty-Second Boyd," because he had a standing offer to all pilots that if they could defeat them in simulated air-to-air combat in under 40 seconds, he would pay them $40. Like any gunslinger with a name and a reputation, he was called out many times. As an instructor at the Fighter Weapons School (FWS) at Nellis AFB, he fought students, cadre pilots, Marine and Navy pilots, and pilots from a dozen countries, who were attending the FWS as part of the Mutual Defense Assistance Pact.

He never lost.
America has dominated the skies for the past 30 years because of John Boyd.
Boyd developed his model after analyzing the success of the American F-86 fighter plane compared with that of the Soviet MIG-15. Although the MIG was faster and could turn better, the American plane won more battles because, according to Boyd, the pilot's field of vision was far superior.
This improved field of vision gave the pilot a clear competitive advantage, as it meant he could assess the situation better and faster than his opponent. As a result, he could out-maneuver the enemy pilot, who would be put off-balance, wouldn't know what to expect, and would start making mistakes.
Success often comes from being one step ahead of the competition and, at the same time, being prepared to react to what they do. With global, real-time communication, ongoing rapid improvements in information technology, and economic turbulence, we all need to keep updating and revising our strategies to keep pace with a changing environment.
Understanding the Tool
Called the OODA Loop, the model outlines a four-point decision loop that supports quick, effective and proactive decision-making. The four stages are:
1. Observe – collect current information from as many sources as practically possible.
2. Orient – analyze this information, and use it to update your current reality.
3. Decide – determine a course of action.
4. Act – follow through on your decision.
You continue to cycle through the OODA Loop by observing the results of your actions, seeing whether you've achieved the results you intended, reviewing and revising your initial decision, and moving to your next action.
Observing and orienting correctly are key to a successful decision. If these steps are flawed, they'll lead you to a flawed decision, and a flawed subsequent action. So while speed is important, so too is improving your analytical skills and being able to see what's really happening.
Let's look more closely at what each stage involves:
Stage 1. Observe
At this initial point in the loop, you should be on the look-out for new information, and need to be aware of unfolding circumstances. The more information you can take in here, the more accurate your perception will be. Like an F-86 pilot with a wide field of vision, you want to capture as much incoming data as possible. The kind of questions you need to be asking are:
• What's happening in the environment that directly affects me?
• What's happening that indirectly affects me?
• What's happening that may have residual affects later on?
• Were my predictions accurate?
• Are there any areas where prediction and reality differ significantly?
Stage 2. Orient
One of the main problems with decision-making comes at the Orient stage: we all view events in a way that's filtered through our own experiences and perceptions. Boyd identified five main influences:
• Cultural traditions.
• Genetic heritage.
• The ability to analyze and synthesize.
• Previous experience.
• New information coming in.
Orientation is essentially how you interpret a situation. This then leads directly to your decision.
The argument here is that by becoming more aware of your perceptions, and by speeding up your ability to orient to reality, you can move through the decision loop quickly and effectively. The quicker you understand what's going on, the better. And if you can make sense of the situation and the environment around you faster than your competition, you'll have an advantage.
And it's important to remember that you're constantly re-orienting. As new information comes in at the Observe stage, you need to process it quickly and revise your orientation accordingly.
Stage 3. Decide
Decisions are really your best guesses, based on the observations you've made and the orientation you're using. As such, they should be considered to be fluid works-in-progress. As you keep on cycling through the OODA Loop, and new suggestions keep arriving, these can trigger changes to your decisions and subsequent actions – essentially, you're learning as you continue to cycle through the steps. The results of your learning are brought in during the Orient phase, which in turn influences the rest of the decision making process.
Stage 4. Act
The Act stage is where you implement your decision. You then cycle back to the Observe stage, as you judge the effects of your action. This is where actions influence the rest of the cycle, and it's important to keep learning from what you, and your opponents, are doing.
Using the Model
The OODA Loop isn't meant to be a static, linear "do this, then this, then this" type model: it needs to be a smoother, more continual process. With this approach, the faster you can move through each stage the better. In fact, if you were to sit down and map out each step, your decisions would likely slow down instead of speed up.
The goal of the model is to increase the speed with which you orient and reorient based on new information coming in. You want to be able to make a smooth and direct transition between what you observe, how you interpret it, and what you do about it.
When you make these transitions rapidly, you're in a position to be proactive, and you can take advantage of opportunities your competition isn't even aware of yet. Boyd calls this "operating within your opponent's OODA Loop". Here, your competitor is moving too slowly and simply reacting to environmental changes. By contrast, you're working on the offensive, making strikes and forcing them to react to you.
This theory can be used in many situations. As you become more familiar with the stages you can recognize the changes you need to make faster and you can defeat your foe by being faster than they are.
This applies in a gunfight, a physical fight, or even in preparation and defense.
We celebrate the birthday of this great strategist and American. We should learn and live this information for better success in self-defense.
I usually review this information annually so you may see other articles on this.
Semper Paratus
Check 6
Burn

Happy Birthday John Browning

John Moses Browning was born on January 23, 1855 in Ogden, Utah. When he was 24 on
Oct 7, 1879 the U.S. government granted the first patent to John for a rifle. Two years after that invention is marketed as Winchester Single shot rifle of 1885, Browning becomes a full-time missionary. He served faithfully and honorably then returned home to invent. Among later inventions of this "father of modern firearms," are Winchester Repeating Rifle of 1886, Winchester Leer Action Shotgun Model of 1887, Winchester Pump-action Shotgun of 1890, Winchester .22-caliber Single Shot Rifle of 1900, Cold .45-caliber semiautomatic pistol (standard U.S. military sidearm since 1911), .30-caliber machine gun used in World War I and his Browning automatic rifle (BAR) is later used in World War II.
None of Browning’s success is due to chance—like all of the American pioneers, he turned luck to his advantage only through an enormous amount of hard work. His strength of character and the steadfastness of his principles were out of the ordinary. Thus it was that, toward the end of his life, when offered an honorary title by a university, he refused it for the simple reason that “he had made it a rule never to accept anything that he had not gained as a result of his own work.”
John Moses Browning was always an active member of the LDS Church, including serving a mission to Georgia beginning March 28th 1887. John was baptized into the Church 18 September 1867. He died November 25th 1926 Liège, Belgium. He is remembered for his work in inventing weapons, but was a family man, a honest businessman, and a man of God.

I hope we can remember the wonderful accomplishments of this great brother every time we admire a 1911, or shoot a pump action shotgun.

Semper Paratus
Check 6
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Father Of Delta Force Charles Beckwith

Col. Charles A. Beckwith, known as “Chargin’ Charlie,” was born Jan. 22, 1929 in
Atlanta, Ga. He played football for the University of Georgia and was drafted by the Green
Bay Packers; however, he turned down their offer to serve in the U.S. Army, and was
commissioned as a second lieutenant in 1952.
In 1958, Beckwith volunteered for Special Forces and was assigned to the 7th Special
Forces Group (Airborne) at Fort Bragg, N.C. In 1960.
After a distinguished career Beckwith was chosen to form the SAS- type unit he had promoted for several years. As the threat of international terrorism increased, 1st Special Forces Operational Detachment-Delta was founded in November 1977 as a counterterrorist unit whose main missions were hostage rescue and specialized reconnaissance. As the ground force
commander, Col. Beckwith led Delta on its first mission to Iran to rescue 54 American
hostages. Later, the Joint Special Operations Command was formed, directly based on
Beckwith’s recommendations during Senate investigations on the failed Iran mission to
rescue hostages. Col. Beckwith retired in 1981 and formed a consulting agency based in
Austin, Texas.

Beckwith is considered the Father of Delta Force.

Semper Paratus
Check 6
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Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Review: Goal Zero Nomad 7 Solar charger

I’ve tested the Goal Zero Nomad 7 portable solar charger and am impressed with its performance. If you have the need, you should seek out this item.
I tested this during the winter time and was able to charge NiCad batteries I have and my I-pad. Of course, sun is needed. Here in the southwest we have plenty of that but I noticed it did pretty well on a cloudy day too. The manual says it recharges batteries in 3 to 6 hours. I found it closer to 3 hours. My I-pad was a little longer and it was in the 50% range of charge when I started the recharge. That was charging the pad directly with the panels. I think it would be faster through the battery pack.
The Switch 8 and Guide 10 Plus are battery pack accessories you can get with the Nomad. The panel I bought was from a Bass Pro shop and all these items came as a package. They are sold separately. I wouldn’t want just the panel although it would be better than nothing. Actually I wanted the panels as a charger for batteries more than devices but that is a bonus. Apart from being able to charge from the solar panel, the Guide 10 can also charge four AA batteries from a USB port.
It’s possible to connect the panels to a backpack and let things charge while walking or biking. The panel’s case has loops and the battery pack has one also, to secure it to whatever you need. I did not test it this way but I’ve seen others reviews of this. I tested a similar system and found it lacking. I think if you walked with the sun at your back all day it would work better. It works at about 50% on a backpack but your mileage may vary.
Many people spend time in the outdoors to get away from technology for a while. But if you want to stay connected, this is the system for you. I got one to use in emergency situations and everyday use where I wanted to save some electricity. I just like the idea of being a little more self-sufficient.
I think having the panel stationary in direct sun is much better than moving around. Although if you had to move, it’s good to know that it still works albeit at about half strength. If you end up somewhere remote than I know from past experiences how good it is to have power.
When I think portable I think of size, bulk, and weight (SBW). This fits the Goal 0 to a T. The panel folds into a package the same size as my I-pad mini. The weight is only a little less than a pound. The panels are sturdy and the case protects and hold everything you need.
The Nomad does need direct sunlight, incidental light doesn’t work very well like most solar panels. I like the battery pack because it gives me options. Even if I have regular batteries I could use them to charge a device. Or the rechargeable batteries will work. Or you can charge directly from the panels. I like options. The Guide 10 battery pack also has a USB port on it which gives other options.
If you look you may find the same deal I did $79.99 for the Nomadm 7 (for 7 watts of power) and Guide 10 battery pack. I looked on Amazon and found only the Nomad for $79.99. The Guide 10 is listed at $44.95.
I was very happy with the performance of this item. For my needs, it fit very nicely!
Semper Paratus
Burn

Monday, January 19, 2015

Gear Review: The Versatile Shemagh

I’d like to review a piece of gear that I particularly like although I haven’t owned or worn one in some time. I call it a Shemagh. Although there are many different styles and names from India to the Middle East. I just picked one up and want some more.
The keffiyeh, especially the all-white keffiyeh, is also known as the ghutrah. This is particularly common in the Arab Peninsula where the skullcap is called a keffiyeh. Roughly speaking:
Ordinary keffiyeh [kuh-fee-uh]
A piece of white/orange/black cloth made from wool and cotton, worn primarily by Palestinians.
Shemagh [sh-mawg]
A piece of cloth, usually made of cotton or flax and decorated with many colors, but usually red and white; worn primarily by Jordanians.
Ghutrah [goo-tra]
A piece of white cloth made of cotton mild, worn in western Iraq and by the Arabs of the Persian Gulf states.

I’m not real sure of all the history or cultural tradition in this item so I asked my friend Mac about it. Mac served in Special Ops for 22 years and now serves in the Diplomatic Security service. He has been to just about every middle eastern, and far eastern country there is. Not to mention his South American and Asian exploits. He sent me these tid-bits of information.

“As far as the symbolization of the colors, I used to a have a few Palestinian friends, and they told me black checkering: Fatah, red checkering: Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine ( a pro-Syrian group), green checkering: Hamas/Muslim fundamentalists.
When I was in the West Bank and Gaza in 1989, red and black were popular, but green wasn't.
So red and white checkered is used by sunni (one example being the Jordanian military), a green and white one by shia, and black and white is traditionally worn by lower/working classes (was worn by Arafat as a symbol of his connection to working class palestinians). There are several weights but the most common are lightweight cotton. The OD/black, and tan/black are to the best of my knowledge the colors that were issued to the SAS in the World War II.
Another part of why you see them being worn by various troops (especially special operations units) in an effort to forge bonds with the local people. This is part of why they were often seen on SF/Spec Ops troops in the early days of the war in Afganistan. Many of them were working to blend in with and had to work closely with local forces. Dressing similar to the local troops helped them forge bonds with these local units.
It also helps you blend in if you must egress.”
This my favorite way to wear the Shemagh but there are many different ways.

1. Fold the shemagh into a triangle. With the shemagh completely open, match one corner with the corner diagonally opposite from it, folding the square in half and into a triangle.This particular tying method is a good option if you want to use the shemagh to protect your head and face from cold winds or hot sun.

2. Drape the shemagh over your forehead. Pull the folded edge of the shemagh over your forehead, positioning it somewhere between your hairline and your eyebrows.
The excess material should drape over the top of your head and down the back, not in front of your face.
If you have tied a bandana in the past, then a good way to think of this initial position would be to act as though you are preparing to tie a really large bandana.
The two ends of the shemagh should be about equal for this style, so position the folded edge with the middle resting on your head.
3. Wrap the right side under your chin. Pull the right side around to the left so that it wraps completely under your chin. Pull the end over your shoulder and toward the back of your head.
Hold this end in place with your left hand while working with the left side to prevent it from loosening. A shemagh needs to be fairly tight in order to be effective.
4. Wrap the left side over your face. Grab the leading or folded edge of the left side with your right hand and pull it all the way across your face, toward your right side. Unlike the right side of the shemagh, this left side should drape across your nose and mouth, not under your chin.
Pull the right end over your shoulder and toward the back of your head, as well.
5. Tie the two ends at the back of your head. Use a tight overhand or double knot to secure the shemagh in place. This knot should be at the back of your head, roughly around the back center, and it must be tight enough to keep the shemagh on your face.
Do not tie the knot so tightly that you make it difficult to breathe or turn your head, but make sure that the material is taut against all parts of your neck, face, and head.
6. Adjust as needed. Adjust the shemagh as needed so that the material covers the top of your head and lower half of your face without covering your eyes. After this step, the shemagh is complete.
One major advantage of this wrapping style is its versatility. You can pull the bottom off your face to create a simple headwrap, or you can pull both the bottom and top portions down so that they sit around your neck, creating a scarf.

The time I have spent in the Southwest has taught me that removing clothing is not the way to go in extreme heat. Loose clothing that breaths is what will keep you coolest. The Shemagh does this very well. But in cold, wrapped tightly, it can keep out cold and keep you warm. The Shemagh can be worn with a Tuk, a beanie or skullcap, or other hats. I’ve worn one with a baseball hat underneath.
The Shemagh has many other uses. Besides keeping you cool and warm it can be used to wrap up a bundle of items and tied to a stick like the old hobos. It can be used as a bandage in a pinch or a tourniquet. I’ve used one as an arm sling or in tying a leg to a pole or stick to immobilize the limb. It can be wrapped around a foot to support a sprain or worse.
It can be used as a wash cloth or towel. It can be used as a pot holder too. Also it can be used as a water filter. I’ve used one more than once as a pillow.
I’m sure you can find other uses I haven’t mentioned or thought of.

Often this piece of clothing is sometimes referred to as a tactical scarf. I’m not sure why. The word “tactical” is sometimes thrown around a lot. I think too much. As I’ve said before, I tease my wife by adding paracord to everything and then calling it “tactical”.
I like items that have multi uses. I also like the fact that it is light weight and not bulky. It’s easily slipped into a bug out bag,back pack or “C” bag.
I highly recommend them.

Semper Paratus
Check 6
Burn




Friday, January 16, 2015

Concealed Carry: Reasons To Carry


About predicting the future. These quotes epitomize why we should not try and guess the future.
“It is impossible for men in the future to fly like birds. Flying is reserved for the angels.” —Milton Wright, Bishop , 1870, father of Orville and Wilbur Wright
“This ‘telephone’ has too many shortcomings to be seriously considered as a means of communication. The device is inherently of no value to us.” — Western Union internal memo 1876
“I think there is a world market for maybe five computers.” — Thomas Watson, chairman of IBM 1943
No one can tell you what will or will not happen in the future. We can, however, do our best to prepare for what we think will happen.
Here are some facts.
Carrying a concealed handgun in public is permitted in all 50 states as of 2013, when Illinois became the last state to enact concealed carry legislation.
42 states have "shall-issue" laws where police do not have discretion in issuing concealed weapon permits as long as individuals meet minimum requirements, such as a minimum age, no prior felony conviction, and no recent commitments to a mental institution (as of Mar. 14, 2014). Eight states have "may issue" laws where concealed weapon permits are approved based on the discretion of local police departments or governments.
The National Rifle Association (NRA) gave presidential candidate Barack Obama an "F" rating based on his voting record on guns. The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence also gave President Obama an "F," in part because he signed the Credit Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure Act of 2009 which included an amendment to allow the carrying of firearms in national parks.
Between May 2007 and Mar. 11, 2014, at least 14 law enforcement officers and 622 other people were killed nationally by private individuals legally allowed to carry concealed handguns.
Seven states allow carrying a concealed weapon on public college or university campuses, 21 states ban concealed weapons on campus, and 22 leave the decision up to the individual college or university.
Carrying a gun is not being pessimistic. On the contrary, I think it is being positive. Being positive that you are prepared for anything. You’re not betting the worst will happen, but you’re prepared if it does.
The following reason to carry comes from a woman’s concealed carry site called “The Cornered Cat” corneredcat.com
“Although the stereotype is that gun owners are after some sort of a “power rush,” I never have felt super-powerful or invincible when carrying a gun, nor anything remotely like that. Instead, in a low-key sort of way, I simply feel confident that I am equipped to handle an unpleasant or even deadly situation if I really need to do so. Because I know I could cope with the worst that could happen, I am free to go about my regular business without a lot of that low-level, back-of-the-mind feeling of vulnerability that most women experience on some level in their daily lives (especially when traveling though big cities, or in deserted areas after dark). When I first began carrying, I really liked having that feeling of calm confidence which came from being prepared to cope with the worst life could possibly throw at me, and I wanted to keep feeling it.
And that is why I carry a gun all the time.”
Rachel Chumita
http://www.corneredcat.com/article/why-a-gun/why-i-carry-a-gun/
Here’s some truth about gun owners and gun toters.
We Just Want to be Safe
That’s all it is, really… we want to remain secure against those who may seek to do us harm, and a convenient gun is a great tool to help achieve that. And get this: those who carry guns help to protect those who do not carry guns, even when gun-toters are not around, because criminals don’t know who’s armed and who isn’t, which makes them a lot more hesitant to victimize people. Think about it: if everyone were armed, many types of crime would almost cease to exist, because an armed citizen is not a victim.
Vigilance, not Paranoia
People who choose to carry guns do so not because they live in fear, but because they want to take responsibility for their own safety and that of other innocents. History has shown that nothing short of enduring vigilance can keep us safe in an unsafe world. After all, many notorious mass murders have been committed in “safe” places such as restaurants, movie theaters, schools, etc. Keeping such places free of lawful guns is an open invitation to criminals, but the presence of responsible, law-abiding citizens with guns offers a feasible deterrent to mass murder.
We Don’t Want to Shoot Anyone
It’s true; we do not want to have to drop the hammer on anyone. I can’t think of a much more traumatic experience than having to take a life, unless it’s suffering as a helpless victim under the cruel attentions of a criminal such as a rapist or murderer. No, I don’t ever want to pull a trigger in anger, but if it comes down to a choice between me and a bad guy, I’ll do everything I can to ensure that the bad guy loses.
It’s a Dangerous World
If this world wasn’t dangerous, we wouldn’t have any debate about guns. But it most certainly is, and one must choose whether to live in denial that anything bad can happen, or accept reality and prepare oneself as best you can to protect yourself and your loved ones from whatever threat may arise.
Armed Citizens Make Unarmed People Safer
Any portion of armed, non-criminal citizenry creates a measure of security for everyone else. When the bad guys have to guess at who does or doesn’t have a gun, it makes crime a less attractive career choice. On the other hand, in areas where the law-abiding can’t arm themselves (such as in schools or big cities with strict anti-gun laws), criminals can and do operate boldly.
Use Your Rights – or Lose Them
Like many, I believe it’s wrong to have to beg permission, submit to scrutiny, and/or bribe the government in order to exercise a right that is not granted by government. That said, I have done so, and I hope that every able-bodied adult will do the same. Because the more of us there are who exercise these civil rights, the harder it will be for the government to steal these and other rights in the future.
Carrying a Gun is Inconvenient and Uncomfortable
It’s true – toting a gun is a pain. A gun can poke, dig, gouge, protrude, aggravate, and otherwise just be a hassle to keep on your person – especially when you are legally obligated to keep it hidden at all times. But that’s something I’m willing to put up with, just in case someone ever points a gun at me and my family again. Yes, I did say, “again.” It happens, on public streets in broad daylight. One must choose whether to be prepared to resist, or to submit as a lamb to the slaughter.

In 1929, the Soviet Union established gun control. From 1929 to 1953, about 20 million dissidents, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.

In 1911, Turkey established gun control. From 1915 to 1917, 1.5 million Armenians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.
Germany established gun control in 1938 and from 1939 to 1945, a total of 13 million peaceful citizens who were unable to defend themselves were rounded up and exterminated.

China established gun control in 1935. From 1948 to 1952, 20 million political dissidents, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.

Guatemala established gun control in 1964. From 1964 to 1981, 100,000 Mayan Indians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.

Uganda established gun control in 1970. From 1971 to 1979, 300,000 innocents, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.

Cambodia established gun control in 1956. From 1975 to 1977, one million educated people, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.

Defenseless people rounded up and exterminated in the 20th Century because of gun control: 56 million.

During WWII the Japanese decided not to invade America because they knew most Americans were ARMED! Now, because the U.S. government and DHS are so fearful
of 90-million, well-armed, law-abiding American citizens, they haven't declared martial law.

Switzerland issues a gun to every household and provides training. They are neutral and have no standing Army. Their citizens are all they have. Switzerland has the lowest gun-related crime rate of any civilized country in the world.

I did not mean for this to be a political article. But when you talk about gun rights, concealed carry rights, and the reasons behind them, you will end up with something opinionated and potentially political.
I carry because I agree with the reasons given here. I also like the idea of being self-sufficient in all things.
It’s interesting to me that people who have no problems with having life, car, and home owners insurance give up their safety and security to the chance of crime not happening to them and theirs. They rely on “rule of law” to keep them safe. The fact that laws against violence, robbery, and murder are enough to keep us safe is so very foolish. I love rule of law. Most of the time it protects me to a certain degree. But if I rely on the law or the police I’m taking a chance. Like going without insurance. I don’t know why a regular person can’t see that.
My reasons to carry don’t stop there. I took an oath having to do with this country to “protect against all enemies, foreign and domestic.” I take that oath seriously. I know some people feel I’ve done my duty and am no longer required to keep that oath. Well even the Lamanites knew the importance of keeping an oath. At one time they were blood thirsty but would not take an oath they knew they would break. It didn’t matter that they were probably not quite “law abiding”. Their oath, their word, was everything to them and to the righteous Nephites.
The last reason is not really a reason. More of a perk. I’m a gun guy. I’ve shot, collected, hunted with, competed with, instructed about, fought with, and admired guns since I was 8 years old. Without blurting out my age, it’s been some time since I was 38. So I have been around them for a while. I get great pleasure from them. I love to shoot but I even enjoy going to the range and smelling the gun powder and recognizing the different sounds of the different calibers and actions (they all have a different sound you know…) of various guns. Some people recognize bird chirps of different species. I enjoy recognizing the difference between a striker fired weapon from a hammer fired one. I love the report of a Kalashnikov AK as opposed to a DPMS AR report. It just makes me smile. Anyway, I digress. What would make most people’s eyes glaze over (ballistics reports) I pore through with enthusiasm. I am not an expert, I just love it. So carrying my friend that will also protect myself and others, is a natural thing for me.
These are some of my reasons to carry. I hope you will find your own reasons. Don’t just buy a gun and start carrying. Get trained. Find the gun and holster that is right for you. Consider the legal, emotional, and moral ramifications of carrying a lethal means of self-defense. Then practice so you won’t be a menace out there. After you have gone through this expensive, sometimes difficult and trying process, carry legally every day, everywhere. You, and I, will be glad you did.
Semper Paratus
Check 6
Burn

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Concealed Carry: Carrying In The Winter Cold

I am from the South. I grew up in the Southwest and still live in the Southwest. Southern California, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas… these are the climates I love. I love Southern Utah for the same reasons. I thrive in the “desert”.
I served my mission in Eastern Canada. That was the coldest I have ever been in. I don’t know how you people in the North do it, but I’m glad I don’t have to.
I spent some of this Winter in a cold Northern climate. I carried a weapon the whole time I was up there but had to reevaluate the way I carried. For instance, if you carry inside the waistband then you might want a T shirt to keep the gun away from your skin. Even bundled up that gun against your skin will be cold. With a T shirt it will put a barrier between you and your gun.
Cold weather means dressing in layers. This can be a real problem if you carry inside the waistband. You can keep everything open, but then that would freeze me. I would opt for a different mode of carrying. A pocket pistol might be in order. When carry all the time. You have to be versatile in your carry mode. Don’t restrict yourself by being “married” to a mode of carry. Whatever you decide, practice your draw stroke with that mode.
Gloves are another consideration. If it’s cold enough you will need some sort of glove. Thick gloves make it impossible to draw the gun, leave alone actually shooting it. I would wear some tactical gloves (which I train in) and a thicker mitten over the tac gloves. It took some getting used to, but practice pulling off the big glove to draw and shoot. You can opt for no gloves, but depending on the temperature, you won’t feel your hands to draw and shoot. Gloves take some getting used to, so let yourself get used to them and pulling the thicker ones off.
Make sure your head gear won’t impede your shooting. You may need to practice a little with that too. If you are going into a place where you think you’ll need your weapon, prepare ahead by removing gloves, hoods, or hats if needed.
Cold weather has many challenges, especially for a Southern boy like me. Plan a little and you won’t have a problem. But it takes preparation and forethought. It may take a little practice too. Stay warm my friends!
Semper Paratus
Check 6
Burn



French Terrorism Analysis

This a great analysis of the terrorist event in France. Read and heed.

http://www.activeresponsetraining.net/active-killers-in-paris
Written by Greg Ellifritz
On Wednesday, January 7, 2014 three masked Islamic terrorists entered the offices of a satire magazine in Paris, France. They used AK-47 rifles and an RPG to kill 10 journalists and two police officers before making their escape. Ten more people were wounded in the attack. According to news sources, the terrorists were seeking revenge against the magazine’s editor for printing a cartoon critical of the Islamic religion. The men asked for the editor by name and went straight to a conference room where he was holding a meeting. From Law Officer Magazine:
“The staff was in an editorial meeting and the gunmen headed straight for the paper’s editor, Stephane Charbonnier — widely known by his pen name Charb — killing him and his police bodyguard first, said Christophe Crepin, a police union spokesman.”
“Hey! We avenged the Prophet Muhammad! We killed Charlie Hebdo,” one of the men shouted in French, according to a video shot from a nearby building and broadcast on French TV. Other video showed two gunmen in black at a crossroads who appeared to fire down one of the streets. A cry of “Allahu akbar!” — Arabic for “God is great”— could be heard among the gunshots.”
After killing 11 people, the terrorists shot another policeman on their way out of the building and then made their escape in a car parked outside. A short while later they car-jacked a man and switched cars for their escape. As they drove to the northern suburbs of Paris, they stole one more car, robbed a gas station, and created a hostage standoff at a printing plant. Police eventually raided the printing facility, freeing the hostage and killing the two terrorists.
Although details about the events are still being released, there are a few obvious take-home points to consider in the event a similar attack occurs here:
1) Don’t depend on passive security measures to keep you safe. The doors to the magazine’s office were locked. That didn’t matter to the terrorists. They just waited for an employee, held her hostage and told her they would kill her unless she let them in. From the Daily Mail:
“‘I had gone to pick up my daughter at day care, arriving in front of the magazine building, where two masked and armed men brutally threatened us,’ said Ms Rey….’They said they wanted to go up to the offices, so I tapped in the code,’ said Ms Rey, referring to the digi-code security system on the inter-phone.”
What would you do in that situation? I bet most of you would let the terrorists inside in order to prevent them from killing you and your child. Just like locked doors did not stop the killer at Sandy Hook Elementary (he shot a hole through a window and entered), locked doors didn’t stop the attack here. All locations can be penetrated by criminals if they are properly motivated. Don’t think you are safe because you live or work in a “secure” building.
2) Evacuation sites need to be considered beforehand. There were photographs in the Daily Mail that showed victims evacuating to the roof of the building to avoid the gunfire. That’s not a good choice. Never lock down in or evacuate to an area that has no alternate escape routes. If the gunmen would have pressed the assault instead of leaving, all the people stranded on the roof would have been dead…caught there without a means to escape.
Pre-plan evacuation routes for any public buildings where you spend time. Think about work, school, shopping, the gym, day care centers, business offices and any other place where you spend significant amounts of time. Plan at least two escape routes for each location. Don’t evacuate to an area without escape routes. Avoid evacuating into a parking lot as well. The terrorist could easily plant a car bomb in the parking lot to target fleeing victims. Look for multiple avenues of escape, wide open fields of fire, and preferably some type of cover that will stop rifle bullets.
3) Don’t bet your life on unarmed police and security guards. Do you think that a fireman without a hose line or fire extinguisher would provide adequate service in the event of a fire? Then why do you think cops and security guards without guns can save you from armed terrorists? One of the first people killed in the attack was the magazine editor’s (likely unarmed) police bodyguard. An unarmed responding police bike patrol officer was killed as the terrorists left the building.
Furthermore the Daily Caller reported that several additional responding police officers had to flee the scene because they too were unarmed.
“Several Paris police officers who came into contact with the armed terrorists who slaughtered 10 journalists at the headquarters of Charlie Hebdo, a satirical magazine, retreated from the gunmen because they were unarmed, according to an eyewitness. “Three policemen had arrived on bikes but had to leave because the men were armed, obviously,” Benoit Bringer, who works on the same floor as Charlie Hebdo’s offices”
You may be surprised to note that not all cops in the USA carry guns as you might assume. Many police departments (including my own) have no directive requiring either on-duty or off duty-officers to carry firearms. Plainclothes officers and administrators regularly walk around unarmed in lots of police agencies. This is unacceptable in an age of terrorism and mass killings. If you are a police officer reading this article, I urge you to carry a quality sidearm with you at all times. Otherwise, you quite likely will end up as dead as these French cops when the next terrorist attack happens here.
Likewise, if you have a concealed carry license and are truly concerned about your safety, you need to be carrying your pistol as well. No excuses! Carry your piece! Look at all the folks who took video of this attack. If those same folks used their hands to steady a firearm and shoot these monsters instead of holding up their phones, fewer people would be dead.
Don’t rely on the police and security, even here in America. You must, as my friend Dave Spaulding suggests, “Become an active participant in your own rescue.”
4) Weapons and tactics- These killers weren’t amateurs. Watch the video on Youtube. The shooters were calm, utilized cover well, ran their weapons effectively, and were well versed in team tactics. The bullet hole grouping on the responding police cruiser tells us that these terrorists weren’t just utilizing “spray and pray” tactics. the New York Times reports that one of the suspect had spent at least “a few months” in an Al Qaeda terrorist training camp in Yemen.
Are you prepared to deal with attackers like this? You will be outnumbered, outgunned, and facing skilled and motivated adversaries. This isn’t your standard CCW shooting of a cracked out robber armed with a knife. You’re going to need to think about the dangers involved. The safest course of action for you is likely to be to escape rather than to engage. If the entire French national police force couldn’t kill these guys for three days, what are your chances?
If you do choose to engage, what is your maximum effective range with your carry weapon? You might have to close the distance to guarantee making your hits rather than standing off 100 yards and trying to cap the terrorists with your .38 snub, Remember, you will be fighting rifles (and in this case an RPG) with your concealed carry piece. Do you still feel “comfortable” with that .380 auto (with no spare ammo) in your back pocket? You don’t want to be spraying rounds without getting hits at long range with your carry pistol. You may not be able to hit at 100 yards, but those guys with rifles you are shooting at sure can.
When is the last time you’ve practiced extremely long range shooting with your pistol? Have you practiced using cover to close the distance on a rifle armed attacker in order to make your hits? What about ambushes? Do you know how to set up an ambush against the terrorists so that the short range and maneuverability of your handgun can be used to exploit the more cumbersome nature of the rifles and RPG? These are all things to think about if you want to be a player in this game.
5) Mobile Killers- I’ve written extensively about the trend of active killers becoming mobile in order to evade the police response. The terrorists in France employed the tactic with textbook precision. According to Russia Today:
“The attackers got into a getaway car and set off in the direction of Porte de Pantin in northeast Paris, according to police. Abandoning the first car, they hijacked a second turning the driver out on to the road. “
Changing cars throws a huge wrench in the police response. The cops are looking for a vehicle that the terrorists are no longer driving. It’s critically important that any witnesses should be providing good vehicle descriptions to police. The officers and dispatchers should be trained to recognize that reports of car crashes, car jackings and vehicle thefts contemporaneous with an active shooter event may be the killers’ attempts to stay mobile. These crimes should be given a priority response.
Even crimes occurring a significant time after the initial attack may be related. The BBC reported that the same Paris terror suspects robbed a gas station in Northern France approximately 24 hours after the shootings. They used AKs and RPGs to steal food and gas. That’s not your average robbery. Police need to be extra alert when responding to any call contemporaneous with an active killer attack.
6) We need to be alert for copycat style attacks, both here in the USA and abroad. Events like this embolden other terrorists. Many terrorists who previously lacked the will to conduct an attack will become inspired to act out as well. One such copycat terrorist attack already occurred in Paris just one day after the shooting. A French police woman was killed and a street sweeper was seriously injured after another terrorist opened fire with an assault rifle. The terrorist had been involved in a traffic accident and immediately attacked the responding officer. An earlier car bombing outside a Paris mosque may have been a copycat attack as well.
The copycat terrorists who killed the police woman have been tied to the same terrorist cell as the Charlie Hebdo shooters. These copycats went on to steal another car in the north of France before attacking a Kosher Deli and market. The Times of Israel reported that the attack on the deli involved the terrorists firing AK-47 gunfire into the store for approximately 20 seconds before taking several people hostage. The terrorists killed four hostages and seriously injured four more in the initial takeover. They then called police and stated that they would not release the hostages until the terrorists who shot up the magazine office were freed. After one telephone communication, one of the terrorists left his phone turned on. When police heard his death prayers and preparation to kill the remaining hostages, they stormed the deli. One of the terrorists was killed by police. His female accomplice escaped.
The copycat terrorists have long worried me. They are apparently worrying the intelligence community as well. RT reports that Britains MI-5 is actively investigating an Al Qaeda group planning “mass casualty attacks in the West.” Just take a look at the success that these two teams of terrorist had. They killed numerous people and escaped for several days all while 90,000 French police officers and military personnel were hunting them. From the Al Qaeda standpoint the deaths of the four terrorists allowed them to achieve martyrdom status and bring tremendous publicity to the cause. Three dead terrorists versus 17 dead citizens. Do the math. That’s a great return on investment from the terrorist perspective. That will encourage similar attacks in the west.
Think how it would go down here….What if Al Qaeda had 10 pairs or terrorists working together all in different parts of the country. On the first day of the attack, each pair of terrorists enters a fast food restaurant at the same time and fires a couple of magazines of AK-47 ammunition. They are in and out in less than a minute. The vast majority of these teams would not be immediately caught by police or killed by citizens on scene. They would escape.
On the following day, the teams all hit Wal-Mart stores in different parts of the country with the same results. Get in, fire a bunch of rounds, get out. The next day they do the same thing at a gas station and then continue hitting random coordinated targets throughout the country. What do you think would happen after the second or third day? The American economy would grind to a halt. No one would leave their house. No one would go to work or school out of fears of being killed. The terrorist network could cripple out entire country with just 20 bold active killers.
It’s only a matter of time before it happens here. French security forces have already detailed the fact that numerous sleeper cells in France and in the West have been activated. We simply have no idea how many Islamist terrorists are currently located in America just waiting for the “go” signal. The events over the past few days in France might just be the signal they are awaiting. We all need to be prepared for the possibility that we will suffer a similar or greater attack than what we saw last week in Paris.
7) We must be prepared to exploit terrorist weakness whenever possible during the attack. Take a look at The Daily Mail’s report of the copycat killing of the police woman. Take special note of the picture of the live round (appears to be Russian steel case 7.62 x 39 mm) on the ground.
How would a live round get on the ground? Only a few shots fired so it wasn’t off the top of a magazine on a flubbed reload. It was either a malfunction or the shooter jacked out a live round because he wasn’t familiar enough with his weapon system. In any event, there was a point in the fight where the shooter was operating the charging handle rather than shooting. We need to train to recognize and exploit moments of opportunity like this. It is extraordinarily common that killers will have to reload or will have a weapons malfunction during an active shooter attack. Everyone needs to understand what those moments look like and be prepared to attack, even empty handed if necessary, when the killer’s gun is inoperable.
These are just a few points from two very complex terrorist acts.

Thank you Greg for that in depth analysis. When I reprint something written by someone else it will usually mirror my own views, as does this. If I don’t feel I can say it better, I’ll reprint someone else’s work.
We must learn from this horrible experience in France. It will more than likely be repeated in other places, possibly the U.S. To be better prepared we should review these incidents and plan accordingly.
Semper Paratus
Check 6
Burn

Monday, January 12, 2015

LDS Gunsite Index 2014

LDS Gunsite Blog Index 2014
Jan 2014 (4)
1. Why this website exists 1/27/2014
2. How do I love gunbot.net? Let me count the ways 1/28/2014
3. Protection in the church 1/29/2014
4. Avenging Angel 1/30/2014
Feb 2014 (4)
5. Storing Ammo 2/6/2014
6. The Ruger 10-22 2/6/2014
7. The 200th Hour 2/15/2014
8. Less Than Lethal 2/15/2014
Mar 2014 (8)
9. Threat Cons and Training 3/4/2014
10. Should You Carry? 3/4/2014
11. Yellow to Orange 3/8/2014
12. The OODA Loop-Combat Concept 3/20/2014
13. Pick a source, any source-Myth of MSM 3/20/2014
14. HiHo HiHo it’s off to the range we go 3/21/2014
15. How comfortable is your loadout? 3/21/2014
16. Shooting from cover 3/26/2014
Apr 2014 (7)
17. Kids and Guns: A good combo? 4/1/2014
18. Cleanliness next to godliness, clean guns 4/1/2014
19. Making someone 4/4/2014
20. Remember Chris 4/4/2014
21. OPR OP Rockwell philosophy 4/9/2014
22. Risk: Crowd Safety 4/27/2014
23. The right and responsibility of Self-defense 4/29/2014
May 2014 (16)
24. Flashlight Illumination 5/1/2014
25. Improv weapons 5/6/2014
26. Stop the threat 5/7/2014
27. Mormon Self-defense 5/13/2014
28. Benghazi 5/15/2014
29. Personal and family security 5/15/2014
30. Remember Jeff and White Feather 5/16/2014
31. Security in an LDS church 5/19/2014
32. The road to concealed carry 5/19/2014
33. Concealed Carry Myths 5/21/2014
34. More than just a day off 5/25/2014
35. Active shooter response 5/28/2014
36. Avoiding a carjacking 5/28/2014
37. Home security while you are away 5/29/2014
38. Toy guns and training 5/29/2014
Jun 2014 (15)
39. Concealed Carry Responsibility 6/3/2014
40. Concealed Carry: Distance is your friend 6/4/2014
41. What cover is and is not, don’t die 6/6/2014
42. CC Participant, OP Rockwells guns 6/9/2014
43. Cost effective training 6/10/2014
44. Tactical knives for everyday use 6/12/2014
45. Fathers call to action! 6/15/2014
46. Myth of gun studies and surveys 6/16/2014
47. When is a safety, not? 6/20/2014
48. Defense in the home: home invasion 6/23/2014
49. The 10 commandments of CC 6/25/2014
50. Ruger Mark2 review 6/25/2014
51. Joseph’s Pepperbox 6/26/2014
52. Porter’s Loyalty 6/29/2014
53. Tactical Pens for EDC 6/30/2014
Jul 2014 (20)
54. Self defense and 4th, 24th of Jul 7/3/2014
55. CC Responsibilities 7 points of CC Law 7/3/2014
56. Unarmed and Paranoid 7/7/2014
57. One Handed Fire 7/8/2014
58. Training-X marks the spot 7/11/2014
59. Gun care-Taking care of magazines 7/15/2014
60. EDC-What’s in your wallet? 7/16/2014
61. Family Security-Talkin Trash 7/17/2014
62. Tactical Doctrine 7/17/2014
63. Training-200th hour, plan to train 7/22/2014
64. EDC Series-Air, Shelter 1 7/23/2014
65. CC Aftermath of shooting 1 7/24/3014
66. Remember- Happy 24th 7/24/2014
69. EDC Series-Water 2 7/25/2014
70. CC Aftermath of shooting 2 7/25/2014
71. Taking a girl to the range 7/28/2014
72. MSM will mislead you 7/29/2014
73. EDC Series-Food 3 7/29/2014
74. Mormon Urban Survival 7/30/2014
Aug 2014 (20)
75. EDC Series: Fire (Part 4 of 5) 8/1/2014
76. Mormons: Low standards of sec 8/4/2014
77. Immigration and Threat 8/7/2014
78. Mormons: Low standard 2 8/11/2014
79. Mormons: Low standard 3 8/11/2014
80. Less than lethal: defensive baton 8/12/2014
81. EDC Series: Security (Part 5 of 5) 8/13/2014
82. Remembering Annie Oakley 8/14/2014
83. Gun terms for the intelligent 8/15/2014
84. Gun Storage 8/15/2014
85. Concealed carry and sacred honor 8/17/2014
86. Concealed Carry: OBC 8/18/2014
87. CC: Choosing a gun 8/18/2014
88. Defending Others: Be Careful 8/20/2014
89. Concealed Carry: Defense In A Vehicle 8/21/2014
90. Preparedness: State Of The World 8/21/2014
91. Magazines: To Keep Loaded or To Not Keep Loaded 8/25/2014
92. Escape and Evade 8/27/2014
93. Training: Shoot like SWAT (Part 1 of 2) 8/28/2014
94. Training: Shoot like SWAT (Part 2 of 2) 8/29/2014
Sep 2014 (21)
95. Concealed Carry: Always, Everywhere 9/2/2014
96. Training: Dry Fire 9/4/2014
97. Nine One One: Situational Awareness 9/4/2014
98. Being Gear Reliant 9/8/2014
99. Happy Birthday Master Jerry Miculek 9/9/2014
100. Family Security (Post 100!) 9/9/2014
101. Family Security Plan Part 1: Home security 9/10/2014
102. 9-11 And Your Family 9/11/2014
103. Family Security Plan Part 2: Property Security 9/11/2014
104. Concealed Carry: Fear and Combat 9/12/2014
105. Family Security Plan Part 3: Family Code 9/12/2014
106. Family Security Plan Part 4: Personal Security 9/15/2014
107. Ammunition Storage: If you have to ask, buy more! 9/17/2014
108. Family Security Plan Part 5: Extreme Security 9/18/2014
109. Ammo Storage: Keep You Powder Dry! 9/19/2014
110. Choosing a Knife 9/22/2014
111. Family Security Plan Part 6: Portable Security 9/24/2014
112. Concealed Carry: Ideas For The Newbie 9/25/2014
113. Family Practice Drills 9/26/2014
114. Preparedness, Security, and Moroni 9/29/2014
115. Riot Security 9/30/2014
Oct 2014 (12)
116. Trigger Check 10/2/2014
117. Happiness is Zero at 50 10/3/2014
118. Evacuation, Bugout, or Get Out of Dodge 10/3/2014
119. Family Communications Code 10/7/2014
120. Vehicle Security: Situtional Awareness 10/8/2014
121. Security: Determining Your Own Threat Matrix 10/8/2014
122. Pocket Survival 10/10/2014
123. Moroni's Training and You 10/14/2014
124. Being Followed in a Car 10/15/2014
125. 5 Weapons Everyone should have 10/17/2014
126. CC-Non permissive environments 10/21/2014
127. CC-Practice Perfectly 10/23/2014
Nov 2014 (21)
128. Security is never convenient 11/4/2014
129. CC-Final word on Caliber 11/6/2014
130. Hard or Soft target, don’t be a victim 11/7/2014
131. A Short Veteran Thanks 11/10/2014
132. Fundamentals of Home Defense 11/13/2014
133. How safe is your family when you are away? 11/18/2014
134. Preparation and others 11/19/2014
135. CC: Be polite, but have a plan to kill everyone you meet 11/19/2014
136. A Reverence for shooting 11/20/2014
137. Ed’s Red bore cleaner 11/20/2014
138. Knife blade steel 11/20/2014
139. Protecting your spouse, working together 11/21/2014
140. Walk softly, carry a big stick 11/21/2014
141. Skills emergency comm 11/24/2014
142. CC and terrorism, indirect threat 11/24/2014
143. CC the perfect gun 11/24/2014
144. Time of thanks time of vililance 11/26/2014
145. CC Pocket pistols 11/26/2014
146. Be "Sharp", Sharpening Your Knives 11/26/2014
147. Phone numbers you should consider in your phone 11/26/2014
148. Concealed Carry: Does Self-Defense Really Happen? 11/30/2014
DEC 2014 (15)
149. Concealed Carry: Carry Gun Care 12/3/2014
150. CC: Trust God to Defend Your Family... After All You Can Do 12/5/2014
151. Concealed Carry and Social Life 12/5/2014
152. Porter Rockwell's Hair 12/5/2014
153. Day of Infamy and Your Security 12/7/2014
154. Gun Safety In The Church, 1868 12/9/2014
155. The Rifle of The Mormon Battalion 12/9/2014
156. Concealed Carry: Carry Ammo 12/10/2014
157. What Is Your Major Malfunction? or Clearing Your Gun 12/10/2014
158. Everyday Carry: A Notebook 12/12/2014
159. Another Call to Action: Revisted 12/12/2014
160. Stopping The Threat And Self Care 12/15/2014
161. Law Enforcement and Armchair Quarterbacking 12/17/2014
162. CIA Moscow Rules 12/18/2014
163. Peace of Mind From A Room: Safe Room 12/18/2014
164. Everyday Carry (EDC) Cleaning 12/19/2014
165. Security and Christmas 12/19/2014

French Terrorism and Your Response To Threat

Most of us have watched a drama played out in Paris, France. A French newspaper made light of jihadists and their religion and apparently the jihadists were not amused. They put a bounty on the head of the editor and others. The extremists were then taunted and paid a price. 2 Terrorists killed 12 people including the editor. He said this when threatened: “…I prefer to die standing…” Editor Stéphane “Charb” Charbonnier. I hope he got his wish. Extremism should be met with courage and vigilance. But being stupid by taunting your enemy is not advisable. I’m not saying that the newspaper should change it’s view or opinion, but to ask for an attack is foolish. From what I’ve read, the French police gave the magazine security by putting 2 police officers in a marked car out in front of their building. As in any bank robbery, they took out the armed security first. Then, because of French gun control laws, the terrorists knew there was no one armed in the building. They were then able to kill 10 more people without too much resistance.
There are many things I could address here including how “well” gun control works. But what I’d like to address is the threat response and what we should do in a similar situation.
First is the threat assessment. Is the threat credible? Sometimes threats on the internet are just that, threats. Is the threat from an individual or an organization? Is it from an ex-spouse? You would know if the threat came from someone you know if it were credible.
Once you decide the threat is credible there are some basic things you should do.
As with every day, you should maintain situational awareness. Watch what is going on around you and what others are doing. Most people will hardly look at you. They are about their own business and unless you look different or are acting different, they will hardly notice you. You should not be this way. You should notice those around you. If you were to take a class on surveillance, you would learn to not look constantly at your target. Criminals who are intent on robbing or doing harm to someone will usually be staring at their target. If someone is noticing you, they should be watched.
Use locks and alarms. If you have locks on doors and home or business alarms, use them, always. Yes it’s a hassle. But it’s worth the peace of mind of everything being locked up all the time. Don’t forget looking up. Access to the attics, crawl spaces, and the roof should be secured. Gates should also be locked. Lock up your breaker and telephone boxes too if they are outside.
Vary your traveling. Change the route and if possible, the time that you go to work or home. Be especially alert at stop signs or lights. Know who is behind you. Have an escape route if possible. Don’t be predictable. Keep doors locked and windows up.
Tell others of the threat. Let those at work or close friends know what is going on. They can be an asset to you.
Arm yourself. Unlike the unfortunate French, here in the USA we can arm ourselves. Learn how to shoot. Become well trained. Practice and be legal. Seek out and find other weapons systems. There alternatives to a gun. I believe in redundancy. Be trained in a variety of defense weapons and disciplines.
If you are afraid for your life, involve the police.
We have covered personal and family security on this website extensively and with many focuses. Check out the following entries to start, then move to the labels PERSSEC and FAMSEC. This should give you a good idea of places to start.
Family Security Plan, Parts 1 through 6, 9/10, 11, 12, 15, 18/2014
Security: Determining Your Own Threat Matrix 10/8/2014
Hard or Soft Target, Don’t Be A Victim 11/7/2014
Semper Paratus
Check 6
Burn

Thursday, January 8, 2015

The "Editor" Vetting Process

I am obviously a blogger. Now ask me if I like bloggers… The answer would be yes and no. The bloggers I like give their opinion as an opinion and leave the reader with the impression that they, the reader, need to research and decide what is truth. I hope that I will always leave you the impression that although I have opinions, sometimes strong ones, but that it is subject to change. I also have a problem with people on the internet who pass themselves off as something they are not. I hope that I never do that either. I am not a professional gunfighter, or an operator, or a gunsmith. I hope I’ve never put off the wrong impression.
The internet is a wonderful place. I love the amazing things that it has done for the world. I am old enough to remember a world without the internet. Libraries, books, TV, magazines, and newspapers were the place for information. Communication was slower and so were the basketball scores. The internet, cell phones, and other technologies have truly changed the world. The problem can be when we believe whatever we read. That has always been a problem but it has exploded with the internet.
I love a State Farm Insurance commercial. You may have seen it. We see a guy with his car who has had an accident. He’s talking to his friend, a blonde girl, about his ap to help him with his insurance claim. She got her insurance on the internet. The friend asks her if she trusts her company, and she says “They can’t put anything on the internet unless its true.” Where’d you hear that?” They both say at the same time “The internet!” Most things on the internet are opinion. There is some fact, and a lot of fiction! If you think about it, in heyday of the newspaper, wasn’t everything up to an editor? They would try to put out the news. But in reality, if the owner or publisher of the newspaper did not want a story in their newspaper, it wouldn’t happen! The internet has just made us all “editors”. The thing is, editors are not only experienced writers, they are usually experienced in fields of writing. They would approve everything in an article so there was a process of an article being published rather than a “post” button.
There was a time in the gun writing world that those who wrote about guns were either in the military, law enforcement, or shooting competitively. Now I know that everyone in these three areas are not all gun experts, but it was a starting place.
Now days there is not a process where someone will look critically at your writing. For every “bad” comment, there are usually 20 “good” comments. I think that is because when I read something that I know is baloney, I won’t always take the time to write and call the guy a carpetbagger. Some of it is laziness and some is not wanting to deal with this guy.
At the risk of this article turning into a rant, I will say that I have very few sites, blogs, or forums that I follow. The ones that I do follow have been vetted by me and many, sometimes thousands, of others. Most of them I have watched and read for many years. I’m pretty confident in their opinions and abilities. One day I think I will name them and recommend them.
I will encourage you to do the same. If you don’t agree with something I’ve put on here make a constructive comment. I am not a gun or Mormon church expert.
I served in the military for several years and was a weapons instructor for 5 years there. I have shot my whole life and have loved shooting my whole life. I have been around the special operations world for some time. Many of my friends are operators or are in law enforcement. I have been a “prepper” (whatever that is…) all my life, but my whole 30 some odd married life. None of these things qualifies me as an expert. Do your own research. Get out to the range and get some experience. Talk to trusted friends and family that may have some gun or security experience. Then decide what is right for you and your family. If you have ideas or opinions I would welcome them here!

Semper Paratus
Burn

Monday, January 5, 2015

A New Year: Planning Like Moroni

Over the Christmas holiday I had a busy time. All my children, their spouses and children descended on my home. It was a wonderful and glorious reunion. The fun and noise never ended. As I was thinking of more spiritual things I was reading today in Alma. I love the war chapters. I think we can learn much about personal and family security from Moroni.

I’d like to review for you Alma 48:11-16 and see how it relates to us today. Let’s go a verse at a time.

11 And Moroni was a strong and a mighty man; he was a man of a perfect understanding; yea, a man that did not delight in bloodshed; a man whose soul did joy in the liberty and the freedom of his country, and his brethren from bondage and slavery;

Most of us joy in liberty and freedom. We should not “delight in bloodshed” but regret having to defend ourselves with lethal force.

12 Yea, a man whose heart did swell with thanksgiving to his God, for the many privileges and blessings which he bestowed upon his people; a man who did labor exceedingly for the welfare and safety of his people.
We should always be grateful to our Heavenly Father for the freedom and liberty we have. We should do our best to be involved in peacefully keeping our country free. We should work within the law to keep our gun rights as much as possible. In my opinion joining the NRA is the least we can do.

13 Yea, and he was a man who was firm in the faith of Christ, and he had sworn with an oath to defend his people, his rights, and his country, and his religion, even to the loss of his blood.
Those of us who have taken an oath to defend our country should abide by that oath whether you are serving active duty, reserve, or civilian. We should remain firm in our faith because the safety we enjoy from no war or crime in our lives comes from our Heavenly Father.

14 Now the Nephites were taught to defend themselves against their enemies, even to the shedding of blood if it were necessary; yea, and they were also taught never to give an offense, yea, and never to raise the sword except it were against an enemy, except it were to preserve their lives.
Next time a pacifist tells you it isn’t necessary to defend yourself, tell them the Nephites were taught that they should. Never start it but you can finish it.

15 And this was their faith, that by so doing God would prosper them in the land, or in other words, if they were faithful in keeping the commandments of God that he would prosper them in the land; yea, warn them to flee, or to prepare for war, according to their danger;

If you live worthy of the Spirit you will know what to do to defend yourself or your family. God will help you after all you can do.

16 And also, that God would make it known unto them whither they should go to defend themselves against their enemies, and by so doing, the Lord would deliver them; and this was the faith of Moroni, and his heart did glory in it; not in the shedding of blood but in doing good, in preserving his people, yea, in keeping the commandments of God, yea, and resisting iniquity.
This last verse summarizes all the rest. God may not miraculously fight your battles, but by following the Spirit in your family security plan, in essence God is delivering you and your family.

This time of year we usually think about goals and plans. If you do not have a preparation plan for your family, commit to doing that now. I would encourage the following plans:

Security plan
Food and water plan
Light/Heat/Cooking plan
Communications plan
Bug out plan
Medical/First Aid plan
Training plan

When we make these plans start out simple with small goals. As we become better prepared and better trained, our plans will grow.

Let us be as Moroni of old. Delight in doing good.

Semper Paratus
Check 6
Burn