1 Apr 09

Buffalo Soldiers:

Black infantry units, lead by white officers, first saw the light of day during the American Civil War. When that War ended, the American Navy became fully integrated, with black and white sailors serving alongside each other!

The Army was not quite so enlightened, but black cavalry units, called “Buffalo Soldiers,” assigned to the remotest of western outposts, operated against Indians right up until the turn of the Century. “Buffalo Soldier” was a term bequeathed by Indians, who found the kinky hair of black troopers similar in appearance to that of American Bison. Buffalo Soldiers were familiar to westerners, but their very existence was scarcely know east of the Missouri.

The 9th, 10th, 24th, and 25th US Cavalry Regiments were Buffalo Soldiers. Troopers and NCOs were all black, but officers were white. One of those white officers was John J Pershing, of WWI fame, who has given the nickname “Blackjack Pershing” in view of his early command of a unit of Buffalo Soldiers. However, “Blackjack” was the “cleaned-up” version, hastily bestowed upon Pershing when he attained flag-grade rank. Prior to that, Pershing was know as “Nigger Jack!”

Being assigned to command black troopers was hardly considered a “promotion enhancer” for a white officer in those days. In fact, most such officers were so assigned as a form of punishment. Pershing was an exception, as most of his contemporaries rarely saw promotion, nor made a career of military service.

During the Cuban Campaign of the Spanish-American War, Buffalo Soldiers found themselves fighting alongside the rest of the Army on Cuban soil. In fact, during the assault of Kettle Hill and San Juan Hill, five black cavalrymen were awarded the Medal of Honor, and courageous black troopers, manning Gatling Guns, are credited with making both assaults even possible to begin with.

However, despite the bravery and audaciousness of black and white troopers alike, and despite the fact that the Army was comfortably integrated during the Cuban Campaign, both the Army and Navy would become immediately re-segregated in the first decade of the Twentieth Century, not to be re-integrated until the 1950s. A large and well-publicized riot among black troopers at Camp Logan in Houston (today a municipal park) in 1917 that left many dead greatly contributed to universal distrust of black servicemen.

In August of 1917, Houston police forcibly entered the home of a black woman and dragged her, only partially clad, outside, with her children watching. The incident attracted a crowd, and a black trooper from Camp Logan, in uniform, approached police officers and asked what was going on. He was immediately beaten and arrested!

When another black trooper, a corporal, went to the police station in an attempt to get his comrade released, he too was beaten and arrested. When word got back to Camp Logan, 156 armed, black troopers marched to the police station in question. They were intercepted by police officers and a group of armed citizens, frightened by rumors of an active mutiny. A race-riot erupted precipitously, resulting in shooting-deaths of soldiers, police, and citizens, twenty in all. Many more were injured.

Order was not restored until the next day. Black troopers were all immediately rounded up and shipped off to New Mexico, getting them out of the area. Thirteen black troopers were court-martialed, convicted, and sentenced to death. They were all hanged just weeks later, all at once, at night, in private, and the scaffold was immediately disassembled and removed. Other black participants were given prison terms. No police, nor citizens participants, were ever prosecuted.

Thus, between the beginning of WWI and the middle of WWII, it was nearly impossible for a black man to enlist in either the Navy or the Army and serve in uniform.

Until recently, little was written about Buffalo Soldiers. They were archetypical “unsung heroes.” Conversely, much was written about every other kind of soldier, cavalryman, and cowboy. No one expected black men to fight well, ride well, nor serve well. When they got their chance, they had to earn their reputation. It took a long time for these intrepid men to get even what little recognition they enjoy today.

“Fairness” is not a commodity of which history boasts!

“We must build on neither hopes nor fears, but only on the continued faithful discharge of our duty, wherein alone will be found safety and peace of mind”




3 Apr 09

Taurus Judge, revisited:

I had the opportunity to shoot my Judge Pistol, once more, this afternoon, in the company of my publisher and another writer. This time, I had some Winchester 000 Bk (three pellets) 410 shotgun rounds.

I was pleased on two points, (1) recoil is much milder than when shooting 410 slugs, and (2) the buckshot pellets spread after exit at the rate of three centimeters, per meter in range; faster than 000 Bk out of most shotguns. At five meters in range, the three 000 Bk pellets consistently made a triangle fifteen centimeters (six inches) in diameter. This makes 410 Bk from the Judge Pistol eminently suitable for defense of the home. I suspect a single, center hit will stop most fights pretty fast!

Between slugs and 000 Bk, the later has real advantages, and that is what I would routinely carry in it.

However, there is another choice, and I’m going to test it as soon as I can: Cor-Bon makes a 45LC round in DPX. It is a hot load, and the DPX bullet is, of course, legendary. When I get my hands on some of this stuff, I’ll run it through my copy of the Judge for comparative purposes.

When new products rear their heads, I’m typically skeptical. Only saints live in excess of a half-century without inheriting a heavy dose of cynicism. However, even the humble Judge Pistol may have a place. I like it a lot more now than when I first saw it!



8 Apr 09

NY Incident, from a friend close to the investigation:

“Without getting into data that is not yet in public view, I believe we can take two key learning points from this terrible incident:

(1) This VCA scored an impressive KIA/WIA ratio. When handguns are involved, the ratio is usually 1/20, or even less. When heaver weapons are involved, and, as with the Columbine Incident in CO, police do not respond aggressively, the ratio is much higher, as we see! Responding officers did not make entry for forty-five minutes. That is a long time in a one-way fight!

(2) However, even with the best of tactical plans, we police are rarely in a position to save anyone from violent criminals. We are oh-so good at chalking out bodies and collecting evidence. We positively excel at figuring out precisely what happened, and who did what. All of which is cold comfort for those at the pointy end of the spear, in the present tense!”

Lesson: Be in a position to defend yourself with lethal force, or suffer the consequences. It’s that simple!

Don’t wait to be rescued, and don’t worry about someone else’s rules. There are no “degrees of dead,” and you won’t get to change channels nor go back to the beginning and reboot!

We’re going to see this again!



8 Apr 09

Effective disengagement, from a friend in Western Europe:

“Last week, I was targeted, and actively probed, by a ‘street-person’ while perusing inside a crystal shop in the ‘high-rent’ district.

The shop’s clueless proprietor didn’t notice that there was a predator on the prowl in his establishment, but I did! The sleeze-bag identified me as a foreign tourist, and started circling, trying to stay behind me. I recognized immediately that I was the object of an active stalk.

He was apparently not prepared to confront me directly. Rather, I got the impression he intended to get behind me and go for a quick, hit-and-run job, snatching my wallet and whatever else he could get.

I made eye-contact and maneuvered to prevent him from accessing my flank. That apparently disrupted his plan, and he left the shop, but lingered outside.

Upon my exit twenty minutes later, he tried to take advantage of my parting conversation with
the proprietor and made a rapid approach, again trying to get behind me. I stepped rapidly through his spiral, thwarting his approach and orienting my body toward him, as I deployed a blade covertly behind my right thigh and assumed the interview stance. I was prepared to slash whatever limb he used to grab me.

Abruptly, his countenance fell! He precipitously changed direction, and, at all but a run, departed rapidly, venting his frustration on a nearby dumpster before disappearing all together.

Some might suggest that I should have left the area when I first noticed this creep, but, at least in this part of the world, when one adopts that SOP, getting any business conducted becomes just about impossible! As you’ve noted, there are no ‘safe’ neighborhoods.’”

Lesson: All of us need to hone our decision-making routine with regard to when to
break “stealth mode” and challenge overtly. It’s your call, recalling that “tactics” is just “the best of the worst.”

Disengagement can usually be accomplished successfully through movement, posturing, and verbalization. Higher levels of force are seldom necessary, but you need to always keep yourself in a position to escalate instantly when required. This response potential includes, of course, lethal force.

When your adversary elects to go “all the way,” you can never hesitate!



9 Apr 09

Update from SA:

“The inevitable has happened: Our National Prosecuting Authority here has withdrawn
all corruption, fraud, and money-laundering charges against Jacob Zuma. The disgusting cowards have predictably caved-in to political pressure from the Ruling Party (ANC). The politicization of our Justice System is now complete.

Like Tojo in Japan in the 1930’s, Zuma now has the official green light to continue to terrorize and murder his way into power.

His guilt or innocence were, of course, irrelevant. Communist thugs in the ANC, who think they want Zuma as president, couldn’t care less about the Rule of Law. They just want unlimited ability to lord it over people forever, and be free to violently oppress all the freedom-loving who dare oppose them.

So arrogant is Zuma, that he has already named his cabinet ministers! Not surprisingly, they are sleazy criminals, political hacks, and ANC groupies, most of whom have been previously declared ineligible for public office because of their criminal records.

We are about to witness in SA a replay of events that took place in Zimbabwe just a short time ago. And, as in Zimbabwe, ANC-enfranchised gangsters will, now with impunity, continue to terrorize, threaten, and murder all who represent a threat to their absolute power.

When the ANC wins the general election in two weeks, they will say, ‘…the people have spoken.’ In the unlikely event that they lose, they will declare the election invalid, and demand a new one, repeating the process until they win, much like the Bolsheviks and your Democrats.

It should come as no surprise that ammunition is at the top of our shopping lists!

Wow, that sounds familiar!”

Comment: The lust for absolute power is endemic to the human species! The world’s brief and disappointing flirtation with enlightened, representative government is apparently coming to an end!

Totalitarians everywhere are insisting everyone fall prostrate in unconditional, worshipful devotion, all in exchange for a pathetic handout!

Usurpation of power is always one-way. Once citizen/idiots belatedly discover their mistake, it is invariably too late for sorrowful repentance. They are swept into the sewer with everyone else, damning and disenfranchising themselves and generations of their children.

They have eyes, but can they see?



14 Apr 09

Gas-Piston Stoner Rifles:

I just completed an Urban Rifle Course in UT. Students brought the usual assortment of AR-15s and Kalashnikovs. We also had one RA/XCR (mine) and one DSA/FAL. All ran fine for the duration, except for one of the AR-15s, which was a gas-piston model. All the other ARs were conventional Stoner System (pressurized receiver) models, and all experienced no more than the usual number of hiccups.

However, the one gas-piston ARs displayed many unscheduled interruptions, mostly failures to eject. We all made a mental note that this is not a rifle any of us would want!

Unhappily, this experience has been typical at our UR Courses. As a rule, gas-piston ARs do not hold up nearly as well as conventional ARs. To add insult to injury, gas-piston ARs are a good deal more expensive than are standard models!

It strikes me that, in their enthusiasm to maintain the classic AR-15 profile, designers attempting to equip this rifle with a gas-piston have produced both a piston and op-rod that are tiny when compared with those found on the XCR, SIG/556, and other military rifles in the same 223 caliber. Apparently, a gas-piston system that small is below the reliability threshold, because we can’t seem to keep them running satisfactorily.

The original Stoner System (pressurized receiver) has had a disappointing tenure. Compared with gas-piston systems, like the Kalashnikov, it has been excessively maintenance-dependant, because so much garbage ends up in the receiver. Gas-piston rifles don’t get nearly as dirty, nearly as fast.

However, in my opinion, gas-pistons and op-rods must be substantial, even on rifles chambered for 223. Tiny parts and tiny systems do not reliable rifles make!



15 Apr 09


Around the Horn or Africa, piracy is far from a “new” phenomenon, having been a scourge in the area for millennia. It is only in the age of “learned helplessness” that the international maritime community interminably agonizes over the prospect of offering even the slightest resistance, the minutest inconvenience, to pirates.

Pirates, no matter where they find employment, are vicious cutthroats, and always have been. Among less confused civilizations in the Nineteenth Century, the brutal truth of pirates and piracy was well known and honestly confronted. When encountered or captured, pirates were executed immediately. They were never afforded clemency nor consideration, nor should they have been.

Today, of course, with confusion and institutionalized stupidity the prevailing philosophy, we, as a civilization, endlessly seek ways to become victims and foist forced-victimhood upon our citizens!

In the wake of last week’s daring rescue of an American ship’s captain by the US Navy, airwaves are predictably brimming with pundits and “study groups,” all regurgitating the same sorry dogma:

“Never offer any species of resistance to violent criminals. Never fight back. Freely allow yourself to be maimed, raped, and murdered. Such a fate is surely better by far than being guilty displaying even the slightest personal initiative!”

Their pitiable rationalizations we’ve all heard before:

(1) “It will escalate violence” … Well, I sure hope so!

(2) “It will start an arms race” … There is no “race” when only one side is racing!

(3) “Sailors are too stupid to use guns effectively” … Oh, please!

(4) “Pirates are so clever, so superior in every way, that we can never win. Resistance is futile!” … For these pathetic losers, everything is impossible, and therefore nothing, no matter how promising, should ever be attempted.

If these people are Americans, then I’m ashamed to call myself one!



21 Apr 09

ILEETA, 2009

Vicki and I are attending this year’s ILEETA Conference, again in Wheeling, IL. The vendor display area is huge, and we spent this day going through all the new stuff.

Some highlights:

Kahr’s P380 pistol, in utility, shoot-ability, and function, is superior to the LCP and the Kel-Tec. Thinner, and with more functional grip than either, the Kahr also has useable sights, and a nice trigger. I am making a point a acquiring a copy. My friend and colleague, Mas Ayoob, has had his copy for several months and loves it!

Glock’s new “RTF” (Rough-Textured Frame) finish is now becoming standard. It is similar to “cat’s tongue” and makes for a secure grip.

A company called Vir-Tra is now marketing a video-simulator with an IMAX format. When you “step into it,” you are surrounded by five screens. Projection is from the back, so, no matter where you step, you don’t have to worry about getting in front of a projector. I found myself moving my head with great enthusiasm in order to see what was behind me!

The goal with all manufacturers of video simulators is “suspension of disbelief.” That is, they are doing their best to make the training experience sharply realistic, in order to draw out of the student delineative responses to threatening circumstances. Much progress has been made since these simulators first made their appearance.

More later!



23 Apr 09

More on ILEETA Conference in Wheeling, IL.

Our conference this year is wonderful, as always. Lots to report. All PD/SO Training Officers need to be here! This is where we all get updated, and cross-pollinate!

Today, we had the Panel Discussion, moderated by Mas Ayoob.

Our friend and colleague, Ron Borsch from OH, made us all aware of current research on active shooters/murderers:

1) The active murderer is acting alone 98% of the time.

2) He is suicidal 90% of the time, usually on-site.

3) He almost never takes hostages, nor has any interest in “negotiating.”

4) He is preoccupied with a high body-count. Indeed, that is almost always his one and only goal. Active-murderers race to murder everybody they reach in an effort to avoid contact with police. In fact, most such events are over within four minutes!

5) He bursts upon the scene with multiple weapons and an ability to reload his weapons several times. Longarms are involved 80% of the time. He predictably cuts a bloody swath through the innocent and unarmed!

6) At least 50% of the time, where such bloody rampages are stopped, the person doing the stopping is a single citizen (non-police). Most are unarmed!

Ron’s conclusions are difficult to challenge:

1) By far, the least effective police response to “active-murderer” calls is for responding units to arrive, indecisively dither about on the perimeter, finally entering the critical area long after it is all a moot point!

2) Teachers, administrators, and others most likely to confront active-murderers first, need to be armed, trained, and courageously willing to defend themselves and other innocents with precision gunfire.

3) Patrol officers first arriving at the scene must be willing to enter the critical area immediately, not waiting for backup nor SWAT Teams, and straightaway seek out and confront active-murderer(s).

4) All patrol-cars need to be equipped with military rifles, and competent, aggressive rifle acumen needs to be part of every patrolman’s skill-set.

5) We all need to know and understand that there is no “tactically sound” way to execute the foregoing. There is no “safe way” to enter a building and precipitously initiate contact with murderous sociopaths. There will be multiple, bloody casualties, no matter what we police do, or don’t do!

6) We’re going to see a lot of this, within CONUS, sooner than most of us think. We need to be ready!

More later!



24 Apr 09

More from the ILEETA Conference in IL:

I attended both the Glock and SIG/250 Armorer’s Courses yesterday.

One interesting fact I learned from my old friend, Dennis Tueller, who taught the Glock Armorer’s Course:

Glock users sometimes complain about Glock locking-block pins (1) coming loose and falling out, because the frame-holes in which they sit have become oval, (2) breaking and then falling out, and (3) becoming bent into a “U-shape” (prior to breaking).

I have see all of the above on Glock pistols brought to our Courses by students, both in and out of law enforcement.

The source of these symptoms, in nearly every case, is a worn-out recoil spring! Depending upon how much the pistol is shot, all autoloading-pistol recoil springs, no matter what brand, should be changed-out regularly. Police departments should routinely change them all out once a year.

Worn recoil springs lead directly to (1) excessive rearward slide velocity and (2) insufficient forward slide velocity. The result is bent pins and oval pin-holes, as noted above, and also failures to feed.

My friend and renowned pistol-smith, Jim Garthwaite, once advised me to treat pistol recoil-springs “like an oil-change.” As always, he was right! Dennis Tueller confirmed that touchstone to me yesterday!

More later!



24 Apr 09

More from ILEETA:

New Products:

Diamondback Tactical is producing a IIIA vest that is thinner and lighter than many IIA vests. I was amazed! Many officers now think IIA is inherently inadequate.

Safe Direction, in the latest variation of the theme, is now producing the “High-Security Pistol Case.” It combines a lockable, kevlar pistol case with an integral eye-ring that permits one to lock his pistol(s) in the case, then lock the case itself to something in his car, making it difficult for someone to steal, or even see, the gun(s). When he returns to his car, he can use the case itself as a safe-direction in which to point his pistol for the purpose of loading and/or preforming a chamber-check. The High-Security Case can be locked in place via a cable lock or a set of handcuffs. Another innovative idea from Safe Direction!

Among various video simulators, is a company called TI Training. Their video simulator projects in 3D! The shooter wears special glasses, and the effect is startling indeed! In one scenario, a person was shot, and his blood spattered everywhere, including on me! I took the glasses off expecting to find blood spatter on my shirt! Talk about “suspension of disbelief!”

FAAC demonstrated how their pursuit-driving simulator can be combined with a video simulator to make a complete adventure. First, the student climbs into to driving simulator and becomes involved in a high-speed chase. When the offending vehicle finally stops, the officer climbs out of the driving simulator and walks over to the video simulator to confront the angry, drunken driver as he falls out of his vehicle and stumbles about, verbalizing threats and ultimately threatening the officer with a gun. None of it requires a range nor any special facility. Excellent training for patrol officers!

More to come!



24 Apr 09

More from ILEETA:

Rick Miller presented us with a fascinating lecture on the subject of officer deaths, all the more relevant in light of recent events!

He pointed out that there are close to four-hundred potentially injurious assaults on police in America every day, and that Saturday night is the most dangerous time for patrol officers. Officers most at risk have ten years on the job, just long enough to be well experienced but sometimes overconfident, prone to short-cuts, and increasingly complacent. We need to be careful not to become victims of our own good luck!

The “Deadly Mix” then, is (1) the confident, but naive and unfocused, officer, (2) the pernicious offender with well-camouflaged, deadly intent, and (3) circumstances which being the two together, where the offender has much more to lose than does the officer.

To address this deadly mix, Rick suggests (1) Awareness, (2) Image, and (3) Mind-set.

There is no substitute for alertness. You are either alert, or you’re not!

The best way to win a war is by reputation! A sharp, imposing personal image stops many attacks before they ever start.

Officers need to constantly distinguish the significant from the insignificant! During our Panel Discussion, Vicki pointed out that, during our range-training exercises, she has never heard an officer say that he was concerned with being maimed or murdered on the job. But we’re heard many express fearful concern about getting fired, disciplined, or passed-over for the next promotion!

Again, these are examples of priority misplacement. Your next promotion will be of scant consolation when it is awarded posthumously!



24 Apr 09

News from London, from a friend who just returned:

“Handguns are banned, although they are in common possession by Third-World residents who are almost never prosecuted for having them.

Knives over three-inches are banned. Soon, virtually all knives will be banned. Again, Third-World residents are exempt.

Self-defense is a crime. You will be viciously prosecuted for defending yourself and family. Conversely, the criminal attacker will be treated with meticulous leniency. Third-World VCAs are not prosecuted at all!

Politicians are corrupt, self serving, and career-oriented, caring only about Third-World votes.

The Royalty are unavailable, aloof, and utterly detached, but well protected by heavily-armed guards.

Judeo/Christian values and morality are dead.

The UK is becoming a dark place!”

Comment: Sounds familiar!



24 Apr 09

We recently completed another Urban Rifle Course, this time in WA.

Comments on equipment and attitude from students and instructors:

*22LR/conversion training is highly beneficial and worth the investment in gear. Prior to the Class, I was withholding judgment. Financial considerations may force us all to look into it!

*Forward/vertical grips are inferior to standard forends. Too bulky, and too prone to interfere with reloading.

*Anything screwed or glued to rifles and shotguns will come loose and fall off! Additions need to be staked, welded, secured to a rail, anchored within a cross-cut dovetail slot, or eliminated! For example, shotgun sights need to be robust and installed by a competent gunsmith. Otherwise, they’ll fly off, or fly apart, with monotonous regularity!

*The Stoner System is not the hopeless, failure-prone device many claim. Maintain them. Replace worn parts as necessary, and keep them lubricated. Keep the dust-cover closed and keep a magazine always inserted in the magazine well, in order to keep airborne grit out of the receiver. Ignore the hype. They are maintenance-sensitive, but they run!

*By the same token, Kalashnikovs are not the heaven-sent panacea many imagine them to be! Not as maintenance-sensitive as ARs, Kalashnikovs will still go down due to insufficient maintenance. However, they are robust, terrific rifles!

*DSA/FALs rock! But I pray that I never need to shoot any 308 rifle in a protracted engagement, without sufficient Advil!

*XCRs rock! But, 7.62X39 magazines are in short supply.

* “Bird-cage” flash-hiders should be not be called “flash-hiders.” The Vortex proved, once again, to be a superior in every way.

*The Aimpoint T1 (Micro) is small, handy, and out of the way. They just run and run, without drama. LaRue mounts are best, by far!

*The extended, “hunting” forend on Remington 870 shotguns is a abomination! When retracted, it half-covers the loading port! They should be banned from the face of the Earth!

*Shotgun ammunition carriers that mount to the stock are less than ideal! Ammunition is difficult to access, and shooting from the support-side shoulder is nearly impossible. Receiver-mounted side-saddles are better, but they add bulk, complicating speed-loading and handling.

*Coaxial flashlights on longarms are best attached at the 6:00 position on the rail. The 3:00 and 9:00 rail position force you to move way outside cover in order to clear the light. Otherwise, the light is still behind cover, and, when activated, you illuminate nothing but yourself!

*No one needs a brass-catcher on a serious rifle, even in training. They get in the way and do nothing but add complexity to an already stressful situation. Brass catchers are for game-guns and hobby-shooters. They interrupt training!

*I saw the Redi-Mag device inadvertently drop magazines once too often. I do not want one on any serious rifle!

*There are currently three AUG-makers:


The first two are American. MSAR made theirs originally for their proprietary mags alone; they wised up and later made them to accept Steyr magazines also. They and AXT are also making versions that accept AR magazines.

*Self defeating thoughts can kill you! When you miss, or when something else does not go as planned, your ability to accept, adapt, and drive on is the key to victory. Stay in motion, use cover, and press carefully. Hits, fast and sure, stop fights quicker than anything else!



26 Apr 09

Polite Society Event, 2009:

I’m down here in Tulsa, OK where the 2009 “Polite Society” Event has just been completed. Tom Givens, of Rangemaster in Memphis, TN, once again put on a wonderful learning program.

This year, instead of in Memphis, the Event was held in Tulsa and hosted by the expansive USSA Range Complex. It is the biggest, and most well laid-out series of ranges I’ve ever trained on!

The Conference consisted of a series of classes, taught by Mas Ayoob, Skip Gochenour, Bill April, John Hearn, several others, and me. The shooting events were a live-fire shoot-house, and several “standard” exercises. The shoot-house was the main event, and we all found it challenging and a significant learning experience.

You find yourself in the lobby of a luxury hotel, when a Mumbai-style commences. Since the entrance through which you came is blocked, you are compelled to make your way through darkened hallways to the back exit. On the way, you encounter many bystanders and a few terrorists. Halfway through the exercise, a bomb goes off which nearly knocked me on my fanny!

Targets, dressed mannequins, were armed with AKs and RPGs. Bystanders, also dressed mannequins, were attired from high-style to low-style, but did not appear to represent a threat. Ranges were two to eight meters, and all shooting was in poor light. When struck, targets collapsed.

I shot the event with my SIG/250 (9mm) and my Kahr PM45 as a backup. Both pistols were loaded with Cor-Bon DPX, high-performance ammunition.

You had to move quickly through the maze of rooms and hallways, but not so quickly that you failed to take notice of threats. Again, you have to concentrate when shooting, but diffuse the rest of the time, keeping your head up and moving.

I ran out of ammunition for my SIG and had to default to my BUG. Both guns ran fine.

I thought about using my flashlight, but there was no time. I had to move, and move fast!

Some targets required multiple hits, and some were holding hostages and had to be hit in the brainstem.

It was an intense and exhausting exercise!

Lessons confirmed:

(1) There is no substitute for competent gun-handling and deadly-precision shooting. You can’t afford to squander a limited supply of ammunition with careless shooting. You must be adept at first-round hits!

(2) You must keep moving! When they know where you are, and you stay there, you’ll be quickly surrounded and finished off. You have to move gingerly, using available cover as best you can, and you must be decisive. Dithering, even for a second or two, is fatal!

(3) Don’t relax too soon! You don’t get to know when it is “over.” You must stay in the game and finish the fight. You don’t get to unwind!

Once again, Tom’s devotion to this Event has made it a valuable learning experience for us all.

Competent gunmen only need apply. Not to be missed!

Get hold of Tom Givens at givenst@rangemaster.com



27 Apr 09

These comments on ABC’s recent anti-gun piece, “If I Only Had a Gun,” from a friend who works there:

“When I told the producers that I personally believe in citizens successfully fighting back against violent criminals, they instantly lost interest and declined all further discussion.

As you say, producers of this Show got their conclusions mixed in with their assumptions, right from the beginning. Non-negotiable assumptions were (as always):

(1) Americans are too stupid to own guns

(2) When armed you’ll be always be murdered during a violent incident. There is no chance an idiot like you will ever be able to successfully defend yourself with gunfire.

(3) Only police (and media bodyguards) are ‘good enough’ bear arms

(4) When you cannot escape from an active-murderer, you should meekly submit to being murdered/maimed, because ‘being-a-good-victim’ is your civic duty.

Like other anti-gun productions by the mainstream media, the Program was twisted to fit the Marxist agenda of the anti-gun, anti-freedom crowd. Active-murderer simulations were deliberately skewed, so all participants would fail, every time. Facts from real, successful incidents were conveniently omitted.

In their typical Marxist paranoia, media people regard decent , armed, and trained citizens as a direct threat to them, as they are personally none of those three.

Good and decent people are never be portrayed as winning. They are only portrayed as victims.

You can depend on it, and nothing else, from these media stooges.”

Comment: To the left-wing media, we Americans make good slaves, but never good citizens!



28 Apr 09

On police/VCA interaction, from a friend in the Phillippines:

“Here, when an off-duty cop courageously engages armed-robbery suspects with gunfire (which he is expected to do) there is a good chance he will get a promotion, cash reward, and the obligatory fifteen minutes of fame on TV. Quite a contrast with what an American cop faces in similar circumstances.

An armed bank-guard here recently successfully engaged five robbers. All five were DRT! Vice President Estrada (who later became President) presented this guard with a cash award, as well as a new Mossberg 590 Shotgun!”

Comment: Can you imagine that happening here?

Here, the officer would be fired, and then castigated in the liberal press for shooting members of the leftist mayor’s voting base!

Media reports on the event would consist most of tear-jerking interviews with the dead suspects’ mothers!



29 Apr 09

School Shootings and Fire-Doors, from a LEO friend:

“We made an interesting, and inadvertent, discovery during our last department-wide school-shooting drill at our local high school:

When school fire-alarms go off, fire-doors close automatically and allow only one-way traffic. They allow people to exit, but not enter. Of course, we knew this, but we never thought about it critically. When the fire-alarm was accidentally set off, our arriving officers were unable to enter the building when confronted with locked fire-doors!

As a solution, our beat-cars now have knock-box keys for all schools. The key can be used to access individual school knock-boxes, which contain master keys to all school doors. The master keys are on elastic bracelets that arriving officers can put around their wrists. That way, they can gain entry to virtually any door in the building as they conduct tactical operations.”

Comment: The foregoing is just one example of the importance of regular dress-rehearsals of police tactical operations! Many annoying, even fatal, difficulties will not make themselves known until we fully immerse ourselves in the operation.

School-shootings and other acts of terrorism are on their way here. We have to prepare now, while we still have time!

Willingness is a state of mind. Readiness is a statement of fact! We neglect readiness at our peril!



30 Apr 09

Uniform change, from a suburban police chief:

I talked with a long-time friend at the ILEETA Conference last week. He is chief of police for a suburban police department in the Chicago area.

Like many of us, he is concerned about domestic police officers waxing in the direction of an overtly “military” appearance. However, he has nonetheless been compelled to move his patrol officers away from traditional dress trousers and into BDUs (military battle-dress uniform) trousers.

The reason is trauma gear! He has decided that every patrol officer should carry an IBD (Israeli Battle Dressing) and a tourniquet on their person, all the time. This life-saving gear needs to be within hand’s reach of every patrol officer, so there is no delay in retrieving it during an emergency.

Since there is no more spare space on the typical duty belt, not with pistols, magazines, Tasers, batons, flashlights, cuffs, et al, IBDs and tourniquets must go in the side-pockets found on BDUs.
Without this gear readily at hand, along with competent training in its use, lives may well be lost needlessly. Some wounds are non-survivable to be sure, but most wounded officers can be successfully stabilized, in the field, by follow officers, or themselves, provided necessary trauma gear is always within arm’s reach.

Once again, with the harsh turn in world history that we are all witnessing in our lifetimes, upgrades like the foregoing are acutely necessary.

This chief is leading the way. The rest of us dare not delay!



30 Apr 09

When “routine” becomes routine, from a friend and student on the West Coast:

“Today, I woke up, showered, got dressed, brushed my teeth, et al, just like every morning.

I scooped-up my pistol, performed a chamber-check, system-check, retrieved my spare magazine and put it in its belt-holder, donned my CCW Vest, and out the door I went, intent on the check-list of things I had to get done today.

Two miles down the road, I casually felt with my right elbow for the butt of my holstered XD, but felt nothing. I reached for the pistol, only to discover an empty holster!

While angrily turning the air blue, I turned around, went back to my house, only to discover my XD, still sitting on my bedside table, right where I left it!

My mind must have been in divide-overflow!”

Comment: Operators, even chiefs-of-police, sometimes inadvertently leave loaded pistols on top of toilet tanks in public bathrooms, on tables at ranges, and other in other public places. It is embarrassing, to say the least!

The problem is “routine.” All our check-lists are too long, but, when it comes to carry-guns, we have to establish an iron-clad modus operandi and execute it, from start to finish, without interruption.

Women seldom leave their purses behind. Likewise, men rarely leave wallets laying around as they walk away. Guns need to hold the same, prime position in our consciousness as these other items we consider critical to our continued existence.

You can’t be nonchalant. Get serious about your carry-weapons, or go back to eating grass!