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Friday, August 31, 2012

More Comments on Threat Groups

Thanks to PSYOP Soldier for letting us know the original post was blacked out.
Falcon15 has left a new comment on your post "Debate on Survival Threat Groups": Survival threat group: THEM. If you are not one of US you are one of THEM. In a full blown collapse, SHTF, etc. 1 year after the event or events, if you are not one of our group, I either want you dead or part of my group. As far as the period building up to the 1 year mark, for anyone to have found US, they needed to either know where we are, been looking specifically for us, or gone way out of their way looking. So unless you are exceptionally well known and can be positively identified, you may be asked, nicely at first, to leave. Failure to do so, and crossing a certain threshold brings you under Texas (thank God I live in the Great State) Castle Law. Just saying. Great post, keep them coming!

UrbanMan replies: Thanks Falcon 15 for your comments. Roger your comments on the US and THEM. I just had this conversation with a couple regarding the fact that in a collapse your neighbors and even friends will turn against you if it means their survival. That is the danger of exposing your survival preparatory lifestyle to the “Ostrich Heads” who think nothing will happen, hence no need to plan or prep. They are the “Hey lets go to the Burger King then to the movies!” as opposed to ”let’s go find some bargains at the local thrift mart or flea market and work off some items off our prep list.”

These people, the Ostrich Heads, who prefer to ignore the threat,…the impending economic – dollar – infrastructure collapse that so close upon us,….they will come to you if they know you are prepared. They will smooze you at first, then plea or beg, maybe want to be part of your group now that the necessity is upon them. They’ll maybe even threaten you and lastly will certainly have no qualms about going against you if it is a question of their survival or not.
Depending upon your location and nearest organized threat, you may not have much to fear, at least initially, from the really bad threat groups like street gangs and such, however it is phenomenal just how quickly a mob can be organized and feed off each other’s fears and hatred.  In fact, this country has bred an entitlement mentality which makes them believe they should be given everything  they need.   

If you are located on or near a likely mass migration route you could potentially see large groups of people moving through your neighborhood looting and running amok.  Barriers, fences, obstacles and even a show of an armed and organized force may not matter if these people are near starvation or their anger clouds their judgment. My survival group has discussed courses of action on what we do if we have to defend our site against any threat group, organized or not.

Many branches for planning here. What if you engage a group of armed thugs, kill several but some get away. Did you just teach them to go someplace else? Did you just create a group now solely focused on you?  What do they now know of your defenses and response? 

What do you do with the bodies? Our plan, if possible and as long as we have the capability, is that we’ll record on digital photos and from any documents taken off the dead for future identification, before we bury them.  We will also attempt to write a record of what happened – like an official statement  This is to support any legal efforts when and if society comes back on line.

We have talked about stragglers and even large groups of people moving through. To help all that appear in your area or on your “door step” obviously degrades you own supplies as well as poses an OPSEC risk. But how do you enforce your own security protocols on un-armed groups? These un-armed people still poses a threat to you.  Everything from attracting others, to stealing or looting, and even just as a source of information about your location and preps if they move on.     
SO, we get the “US” and “THEM” concept.  I think groups who do not war game what to plan for when faced with situations from massed refugees to well armed threat groups are just unprepared.     

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Urban Farming for Surviving the Collapse

With unpredecented rises in food prices many people, including urban dwellers, are trying to reduce costs by growing their own food and bartering services or goods for food, and vice versa.

The United States used to practically feed the world. Then we went from a agricultural society to a manufacturing society and now to an entitlement society and really to a "pre-collapse society", so the bits and pieces we can see of people learning to take care of themselves, especially through these urban farming co-operatives, are not only good news but gives examples for urban survivalists.

The below is from an article titled Farmscape Brings Urban Agriculture to Los Angeles

In a dry and sunny city like Los Angeles, planting grass is one of the more useless ways to use your property. It takes a lot of water to grow and it's expensive—but beyond that, what's the point when the climate supports much more interesting flora, like succulents, and delicious ones, like fruits and vegetables?

A company called Farmscape is proving that there's enough of an appetite for farming on residential land to turn the proposition into a high-growth business. The less-than-four-year-old company has 12 full-time employees—including seven farmers who receive a living wage plus healthcare—and is looking to keep growing. "One of the things that people don’t talk about when they talk about the food system is who is working," says Rachel Bailin, Farmscape's marketing manager. It's often poorly paid and vulnerable migrant workers.

But the company is changing that by bringing farm labor out into the open, into the yards of city-dwellers and businesses. So far they've installed more than 300 urban farms throughout the L.A. area and maintain 150 of them weekly. Projects range from a rooftop garden on a downtown Los Angeles highrise to small plots for families. An exciting project in the works is a three-quarter acre-sized farm for a restaurant in the West San Fernando Valley. And the diversity of the projects is echoed by the diversity of their clients. "When we first started, we expected that our clients would be of a higher income level and would be two-parent working families," says Bailin.

Instead, Farmscape has been delighted to build gardens for preschool teachers, single mothers, and institutions and businesses that want employee gardens as perks. Bailin says the challenges of farming in Los Angeles are manifold. "You have to account for spaces that haven't had life or biodiversity for decades and then you kind of have to bring it back." The company uses raised beds to avoid contaminated soil and drip irrigation systems to provide water. And their newest challenge? Running for office.

The company has thrown its hat into the ring for the office of mayor of Los Angeles in the 2013 election, running on the platform of bringing back farms into the city. Bailin says it's an ironic way of questioning the bounds of "corporate personhood," extended to a corporation's right to free speech by the Supreme Court's ruling on Citizens United in 2010. "We’re testing the limit of what it is. If corporations are already deciding our politics by giving a bunch of money and lobbying, why not see if we can take out the middleman that would be the politician and make corporations the politician?" It's a joke, of course, and the company will presumably never make it onto the ballot, but it's a clever way to get the word out about the company while making a statement. And perhaps this corporate candidate wouldn't be so bad anyway.

Urban Farming Sources

Another article: 
Five Innovative Urban Gardening Programs in Los Angeles
This is bad news. Here is some good news: “Let’s Hear It for Urban Agriculture,” “Mayor’s Agriculture
Plan Soon to Bear Fruit,” and “Planners Recommend New Zoning, Lower Tax for Urban Farms.” These
are just a few of the headlines that pop up from a Google search for current news on urban agriculture.

The idea is not new, but it’s being resurrected in cities throughout the country (and, for that matter, the
world), in part because it’s one way of fighting childhood obesity, which, along with diabetes, is a
serious health concern for children of all ages. The number of urban gardens in the United States has
grown dramatically in such cities as Los Angeles, Detroit, Milwaukee, and San Francisco, where local
governments and residents agree that these gardens are an important way to give children and
residents access to healthy food like locally grown fresh produce. Below is a list of innovative
programs and initiatives emerging in the Los Angeles area.

Urban Farming Food Chain Project
A partnership between Green Living Technologies and Emslie Osler Architects, this organization
constructs “edible” food-producing wall panels and mounts them on buildings. The people who tend
these vertical gardens use them for their own purposes (meaning produce is not sold commercially),
but they currently have four locations in and around downtown Los Angeles.

Silver Lake Farms
Launched in 2004, Silver Lake Farms just began a Community Supported Agriculture program offering
subscribers a weekly box of fresh produce, grown locally in Silver Lake. They also hold workshops on
how to start your own vegetable garden, and sponsor a volunteer program that connects urban
residents with local farms, community gardens, and homesteads to help out with some of the work.

Market Makeovers
Responding to poor access to fresh fruits and vegetables in their communities, South Los Angeles’s
Healthy Eating, Active Communities initiative and Public Matters have teamed up to engage young
people and convert corner stores into sources of healthy foods via an online toolkit.

Urban Homestead, Pasadena
An advocacy group for self-sufficient city living via farming and homesteading, this family-owned
operation was started in the mid-1980s on a one tenth of an acre backyard plot. Most of the produce is
sold to local restaurants and caterers.

Urban Farming Advocates
Formed in June 2009, Urban Farming Advocates is a group of individuals, small business owners, and
organizations seeking to legalize urban farming in the City of Los Angeles. Their goal is to revise
outdated ordinances that restrict people's freedom to use residential land for urban agriculture.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Is The Army Preparing for an Internal Conspiracy?

I think I am at least on the fringe of Govenment Conspriacy thinking - meaning I am not pre-disposed to see conspiracies in every shadow.  While many of my friends read "Malicious Government intent" into about any news report, I tend to think that most of the information needed to make a proper analysis is missing in most cases, other words, we are only seeing one side of the story.   Having said that, the story below, sent to me by a friend, worries me.

Army colonel ignites firestorm with article on crushing a 'tea party insurgency'


A retired U.S. Army colonel who now teaches modern warfare to soldiers at the University of Foreign Military and Cultural Studies at Fort Leavenworth, Kan. has co-written an article with a Civil War expert that has ignited a firestorm today among those increasingly concerned about what some say is a distinct anti-civilian tone that has infected much of the military and Homeland Security since 2009.

Retired Col. Kevin Benson and Jennifer Weber, Associate Professor of History at the University of Kansas, co-wrote an article for Small Wars Journal on a 2010 Army report titled, "U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command, The Army Operating Concept 2016 - 2028." The report describes how the Army will respond to threats "at home and abroad" in the coming two decades and in doing so has made clear that a monumental cultural shift has occurred in the thinking of those at the top levels of military command.

This shift has some government watchdogs worried, particularly given that Benson is using the platform provided at Fort Leavenworth to educate military personnel in his vision of the nature of modern warfare in America.

According to the vision articulated by Benson, future warfare will be conducted on our own soil. The military will use its full force against our own citizens. The enemy will be average citizens whose values resonate with those articulated by the tea party.

The fictitious scenario used in the Army report as a teaching tool is a future insurrection of "tea party activists" in South Carolina.

As the scenario goes, the tea party group stages a takeover of the town of Darlington, S.C. The mayor is placed under house arrest and prevented from exercising his duties. The police chief, the county sheriff, and other law enforcement officials are removed from office and told not to interfere. The city council is dissolved.

The governor of the state, who had previously expressed solidarity with tea party goals, does little to address the situation. A news conference is called by the new town leaders, all tea party activists, who tell the media that due to the failure of central government to address the concerns of the citizens, the Declaration of Independence has been re-imposed and the local government has been declared null and void.

From the report: When the leaders of the group hold a press conference to announce their goals, they invoke the Declaration of Independence and argue that the current form of the federal government is not deriving its “just powers from the consent of the governed” but is actually “destructive to these ends.”

Therefore, they say, the people can alter or abolish the existing government and replace it with another that, in the words of the Declaration, “shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness.” While mainstream politicians and citizens react with alarm, the “tea party” insurrectionists in South Carolina enjoy a groundswell of support from other tea party groups, militias, racist organizations such as the Ku Klux Klan, anti-immigrant associations such as the Minutemen, and other right-wing groups.

Several items of interest are to be noted in the scenario the Army uses to describe the tea party activists -- "right wing," "extremists," "insurrectionists," all of whom are lumped together with militias and organizations that are considered "racist" and "anti-immigration."

By contrast, those who oppose the tea party are referred to as "mainstream." The obvious question that arises is why would this sort of scenario, with its obviously biased and skewed portrayals, be presented as a teaching tool to military personnel? Why would the U.S. military consider the tea party to be "extremist" or "insurrectionist?" And why would the tea party be classified together with groups that are "racist, "anti-immigration," and "extremist right wing?"

In the numerous tea party rallies that have occurred across the nation no racism was noted by any observer. Speakers included persons of all races and ethnic backgrounds. No sentiment was expressed against legal immigration but outrage was directed toward those break the law and enter the country by illegal means.

And the charge that the tea party is extremist right wing is difficult to justify given that the main thrust of the movement is the protest against runaway government spending that has placed the nation on the brink of economic ruin due to its enormous and unsustainable debt.

Yet repeatedly since the election of Barack Obama in 2009, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has referred to the tea party as "potential homegrown terrorists." Why? Not a shred of evidence remotely suggests that the tea party has any connection whatsoever with terrorists.

Yet some of President Obama's closet longtime friends have not only been associated with terrorism but actively participated in it, such as Bill Ayers and Bernadine Dohrn, who as members of the Weathermen from the 1960s and 70s bombed federal buildings that resulted in the deaths of police officers. But if one listens to the rhetoric emanating from the White House, DHS, and now the U.S. military, one gets the impression that none of the president's friends ever posed a threat to the country but hundreds of thousands of tea party activists are ticking time bombs lying in wait to unleash a nuke on an American city at the drop of a hat.

The brainwashing against conservatives by this administration has had a definite impact on the military. One analyst who works for retired U.S. Maj. Gen. Paul E. Vallely told this reporter that now over half of Pentagon personnel are solidly in Obama's corner and share his values and world view. And with the publication of the Benson and Weber article, it is now clear that the U.S. Army considers it a valid proposition to assume that a future civil war will be sparked not by extremist Islamists with dirty bombs or left wing insurrectionists inspired by Alinsky or Ayers but by the tea party and the conservatives who participate in it.

UrbanMan's comments:  I'm sorry if the political bent in the last part of the article offends any readers.   I did reach out of a few people I know within DoD and DHS and ask them their opinions.  Some of the opinions I am not going to post due to their velmency, however there was a general consensus that while none of them had direct knowledge of the Army preparing for internal insurgencies, several expressed opinions that this train of thought (and preparation) was plausible within today's Army leadership.  

One opinion, in particulary, said that this scenario would most likely pit the National Guard against the regular Army as the National Guard is geographical oriented and therefore loyal to a population center and would have very little patience for martial law effecting their families.  And that for this reason the regular Army would be the action arm for any operations within the U.S. with the National Guard deployed far from their local areas.  But he also said that the National Guard is pretty worn out from continued combat deployments. He continued that indicators of Army intentions would be a reduction of the National Guard's combat capabilities (read funding) and changes in the chains of command.

I sincerely hope this Examiner article is just a case of an Army Officer thinking way outside the box, but then again why does anyone think there is a chance of an American insurgency?  What would spark this?  Why would anyone even think the Army could be used against other Americans?

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

EMP Threat in the News


With the surge in popularity of the book "One Second After", more and more news and dicussion can be found in all media concerning electromagnetic pulse (EMP) and the threat of EMP being the catalyst for our coming collapse.

The following information was released by the Heritage Foundation: By Michaela Bendikova and Jessica Zuckerman

An electromagnetic pulse (EMP) attack on the U.S. would have devastating effects. On August 15, 2003, a major blackout occurred throughout the northeastern U.S. and Canada, offering a glimpse of what life would be like after an EMP attack. More than 55 million people were affected, but most services were restored within a day.

That would not be the case after an EMP. Damage to lives and property would be immense, and the ensuing devastation would continue for years, if not decades. Yet despite this substantial threat, the U.S. remains largely vulnerable to such an attack.

In order to raise recognition of the threat and begin a national dialogue, Congress should establish August 15 as National EMP Awareness Day.

When the Lights Go Out

A successful EMP attack-a high-intensity burst of electromagnetic energy caused by a rapid acceleration of charged particles-would fundamentally change the world: Airplanes would fall from the sky; Most cars would be inoperable; Electrical devices would fail; Water, sewer, and electrical networks would fail simultaneously; and Systems of banking, energy, transportation, food production and delivery, water, emergency services, and even cyberspace would collapse.

UrbanMan's comment:  Take a minute to think about what those changes would mean - total infrastructure collapse - The End Of The World As We Know It.  Do you have a plan for what you are doing to do (immediate steps) with EMP hitting when you are at work?,..out shopping?,...or other normal life events?   

It would take years-possibly decades-to restore the U.S. electricity supply. Recovery abilities would be critically limited, and the country would be challenged to support current population levels. Millions would likely die.

Launching an Attack

One of the most effective means of delivering an EMP attack is detonating nuclear weapons at a high altitude. Energetic particles released during the explosion would disable, damage, or destroy all unhardened electronic devices within the line of sight of the detonation.

A rogue state would not need a long-range ballistic missile to deliver a nuclear warhead. Even short-range ballistic missiles carrying an EMP device or a nuclear warhead launched from a ship off the U.S. coast could impact millions. Today, over 30 countries, including Iran and North Korea, possess ballistic missile capabilities.

An EMP can also be created by a radio-frequency weapon. While comparatively easier and cheaper than a nuclear weapon mounted on a missile, a radio-frequency device must be detonated close to the target and does not produce as much damage.

Additionally, an EMP can be generated during a Carrington event, or space weather. In 1859, British astronomer Richard Carrington observed an unusually large solar flare. It reached earth minutes later and had a significant impact on telegraphs, which shocked their operators unconscious. A solar flare of this magnitude today would have a much more devastating impact, as modern society depends heavily on electronic devices.

Rejected Warnings and Failures in Preparedness

While the U.S. government has been aware of the threat of an EMP effect since its 1962 Starfish Prime nuclear weapons test, little has been done to harden civilian infrastructure. Key military systems were hardened during the Cold War, but interest in the EMP threat dropped precipitously after the collapse of the Soviet Union.

Recommendations of various congressionally mandated commissions, such as the EMP Commission and the Quadrennial Defense Review Panel, have not fully materialized, despite increasing U.S. civilian and military reliance on electronic devices.

Today, comprehensive threat assessments and scenario planning for EMP attacks remain underdeveloped. At the federal level, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) continues to lack a national recovery plan in the event of an EMP attack. Similarly, an EMP event has not been included within the National Planning Scenarios.

These high-consequence scenarios form the basis of federal, state, and local disaster response exercises that are intended to help determine response and recovery capabilities and needs and address problems before a disaster occurs. Given the potentially catastrophic consequences of an EMP attack and the unique nature of the threat, an EMP event should be added to the list of scenarios.

At the same time, state and local governments also remain poorly prepared for an EMP attack. These vulnerabilities are magnified by the fact that the federal government also remains unprepared and would likely be unable to render assistance in the event of an EMP attack.

Take Action Now

Bringing attention to the threat with a National EMP Awareness Day would help, but awareness should be joined with action. In order to prevent and mitigate the effects of a potential EMP attack, the U.S. government should: Improve and restructure U.S. missile defense programs.

Improved command-and-control features and interceptors tied to forward-deployed radar would give the Standard Missile-3 (SM-3) interceptor the ability to counter long-range ballistic missiles in the late midcourse stage of flight.

Additionally, the government should improve the SM-3's ability to intercept short-range ballistic missiles in the ascent phase of flight. Ultimately, the U.S. should develop and deploy space-based missile defense, the best way to protect the U.S. and allies from a ballistic missile threat.

Demand that the Administration develop a National Recovery Plan.

The EMP Commission emphasized that the nation should first improve the infrastructure on which all other sectors are dependent, specifically citing electrical power and telecommunications. This risk-based approach recognizes that certain infrastructure is key to post-EMP attack recovery. EMP should also be added to the list of 15 National Disaster Scenarios.

Determine which countries could attack.

The U.S. should produce a national intelligence estimate on which countries are pursuing EMP weapons and associated delivery systems and platforms or are already capable of launching an EMP attack. Preparing for an attack means understanding one's opponents and how they are incorporating EMP weapons into their strategic postures.

It is essential that policymakers have the most recent intelligence at their hands so that they can determine how best to respond to EMP threats as they arise.

Prepare and protect the nation's cyber infrastructure.

Cyber infrastructure is dependent on the power grid-which makes it a unique challenge in an EMP scenario. Thus, contingency planning should explore ways to keep the cyber system functioning without primary power; it should also explore ways to protect cyber circuit boards from the deleterious effects of a large burst of energy in the network.

As such, Congress should direct the Department of Defense and DHS to review their cyber systems, incorporating the recommendations of the EMP Commission, including identification of the most critical elements of the cyber system that must be hardened against an EMP attack.

The commission also recommends that preparedness planning account for the interdependency between the nation's cyber infrastructure and other elements of the broader infrastructure. Overall, the key to countering an EMP is to put barriers in place to prevent cascading failures in the nation's infrastructure.

Require more research.

In addition to raising national awareness, more research is needed on the risk associated with an EMP attack to ensure that the nation understands the full scope of the threat and how to close critical vulnerability gaps.

Protect the Nation

The U.S. has the technology to protect itself from the effects of a deliberate attack or space weather. It is a no-brainer that the government should pursue these options and "provide for the common defense." The nation should not continue to underestimate the threat of an EMP attack.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Questions on SHTF Bug Out

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post Urban Survival Planning – Reconnaissance and Security: "I live in Arizona and will be here another three years. If/when SHTF, I plan to be prepared. Got a decent amount of stuff and will be fairly good soon. However, my buddy has family on the east coast which would be a good getaway, but that distance seems rather daunting in most situations. I guess you never know what the situation at hand will be, but I'm trying to figure out do I invest in the more costly items for survival such as a $1,000 generator, etc., or sort of do what I gotta do for 3-6 month span and then take it from there? Living in the city is the worst part. I think that is what my biggest concern is. Aside from gun and ammo, there's not a whole lot else one can do for safety. Any other ideas for safety? Thought about a camera for outside monitoring."  

UrbanMan's reply:  Good questions. A long journey from Arizona to the East Coast is possible, but  improbable depending upon the collapse situation. Best case is that you see the collapse coming and complete your journey afbefore the worst of it hits. Given that this would be a 4 day trip, minimum at best, the situation - especially the security situation - could deteriorate during the middle of your trip forcing you to stop at a time and place detrimental to your safety. This would, of course, have to be considered before leaving. Everything from mass migration of refugees, to government martial law, and expected travel restrictions could strand you. In a total collapse I would envision bands of armed gangs, or at least desperate individuals, conducting ambushes on likely transit routes.  I would expect smaller communities would probably man road blocks for their own security forcing traffic to take different routes.

Fuel would be problematic. Two years ago, while a friend of mine was overseas, I was “on-call” to travel 860 miles (one way) to pickup his family and transport them to my Bug In location....hopefully before the collapse hit hard.  I figured I would have to have a full tank of fuel plus eighteen 5 gallon fuel cans to make the trip. If I could get fuel on the way, great,....if not, then I could make it there and back, barring accidents, road blocks, gangs, etc. My point being if you were planning on a long distance trip, I would want to begin that trip with enough on board fuel to make it to where I was heading without relying on luck or someone else’s kindness to sell or barter the fuel to me.

As far as the generator goes, those are great assets when or if you have the fuel to run it.  I have a hoard of empty fuel cans which I will fill as indicators start indicating the need.  I always maintain a small amount of fuel which I routinely change out.   But stored fuel will eventually run out.  I personally have solar panels. I use both small, portable solar panels to re-charge 12v vehicle batteries and chargers for AAA and AA re-chargeable batteries for my lanterns, flashlights, weapons lights, and radios. I have a larger solar power generator that can be easily loaded into a vehicle and taken with us when/if we bug out. I am just not going to depend upon being able to find fuel, either at the beginning of the collapse or several months into it. Plus fuel breaks down, so these movies and books where the hero finds a vehicle that was abandoned years before and he siphons the fuel and uses it, it is a little farfetched. Check out the Power Source 1800 Solar Generator.

As far as security, nothing works like physical barriers and active armed (and trained) observers.  Technology neeeds to be exploited to make life easier for us and to cover any operational requirements we may have. A game camera or home security camera that detects or senses movement then sends that photo to an e-mail or as picture mail to your cell phone is a fairly cheap and easy solution. Solar powered motion detection flood lights work good as also. Be sure to mount these so you can easily dismount and take with you when/if you have to bug out.

Good luck,..plan and prepare well. 

Friday, August 17, 2012

Defensive Positions for Movement during SHTF

Many of us have a hard time with watching military related movies and television shows. You see all the bad habits and out right crappy tactics, techniques and procedures where all the guy congregated together, point their weapons at each other, talk loud, have no idea of what conceal or concealment is,…and,…… try as you might to realize that this is a movie or television show, where they all have to fit into the camera frame, it still ruins it for me.

I was watching “Falling Skies” – okay I’m an alien movie junkie, but you have to admit that this story line is the ultimate collapse scenario,….Invasion by scary aliens,…….anyway back to my point. In one scene the human resistance group was running a small unit patrol. They were bunched together, talking out loud,…nobody watching their assigned area of responsibility,…about everything you can do wrong, they did.

I can only imagine how they ran their hasty defensive positions. So I offer this basic article on conduct hasty halts and maintaining security with an integral perimeter. This could be for a short term halt or for remaining through a period of darkness or daylight. The two hasty defensive position formations described below use blue circles to denote people and arrows to denote assigned areas of responsibility/fields of fire.

Small Circle Hasty Defensive Perimeter. Used with two or more personnel in the patrol. This is performed with all patrol members sitting with their backs (rucksacks or Bug Out bags) towards each other and their bodies/legs facing out. This is a very tight position which allows for very good noise discipline as each patrol member can communicate to the other on his Left and Right through whisper. Arm and hands signals can be used, preceded by a squeeze on the other patrol members leg or arm.

This formation allows for all patrol members to observe and protect an arc of responsibility to their direct front. A suitable location with concealment, usually through vegetation, must be present unless this position is used at night. Some small units use this position in the sparse desert environment, but usually during periods of minimal lunar illumination where the threat ability to see if reduced and friendlies can exploit night vision devices and thermal imagers.

Again, this is a hasty defensive position providing a small signature. An implied task with this position is that team members should be able to shoot from the seated position or on their backs. The prone position, while providing stability and comfort, does not provide for the best ability to observe, especially to your sides and rear.

Triangle or Strong Point Hasty Defensive Perimeter. This is best used when terrain and vegetation best presents the ability to provide covered and/or concealed positions. One mistake teams make in establishing a triangle defensive position is that the distance between positions is too great to communicate or move undetected to. For small units/patrols, the distance between positions for a triangle defensive position may be as short as 10-20 feet. If the environment or situation is risky enough requiring additional security, the triangle position is beneficial to keeping 50% security – one man at each position always on security watching a combined area of responsibility.

One of the strong point positions is going to be tasked with looking, observing and defending the most likely line of approach into the defensive position – this could be an existing trail or natural line of drift.

Common Techniques for Hasty Defensive Perimeters

Work priorities. As soon as a defensive position is selected, priorities of work are directed. Work is accomplished usually in buddy teams – one person accomplishes the work task, while the other provides security. An example of work priorities would be weapons maintenance, foot maintenance, water and chow, then, rest. Again, one person breaks down and cleans their weapons, whatever level is necessary, while the buddy provides security. Then roles are reversed. Each work priority is accomplished in this manner. The leader of the patrol may have additional leader tasks such as reviewing a map and determining exact location, planning the next route and developing a contingency plan in case of any attack on the defensive position makes it necessary to Bug Out.

Security Procedures. Security is accomplished through many ways.

1 – making sure that the position is not on a trail or natural line of drift. In fact, one good tactic is to button hook back off your route so that if you have anyone tracking your team, you could observe and/or ambush them if necessary.

2 - using light, noise and litter discipline effectively as to not give away your position or provide evidence that you were there.

3 – ensuring that at least one patrol member is awake and alert at all times, but sometimes you would want more people awake. When the position is established the position would go to a security percentage based on the number of people on the team. 20% security means one person awake and on guard for a 5 person patrol.

4 - usually hasty defensive positions would not entail establishing mechanical early warning devices, but these could certainly be incorporated. Even something as simple as a trip wire with a noise maker like a tin can with rocks in it. However if a threat group discovered that, they would know immediately what it’s use it and the team may be compromised.

Contingency Plan. Everyone should be briefed on a contingency plan in case the defensive position is attacked and the patrol is forced to evacuate. The contingency plan should include two routes out of the position – these routes should not be in the same general direction but best case 180 degrees apart to support withdrawal away from attacks; identify where the rally point is; how long to stay at the rally point to linkup with late arriving other patrol members; and, visual and verbal signals to identify patrol members to reduce shooting the wrong people.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Question on 511 Tactical Pants

XSFC has left a new comment on your post Urban Survival Gear - 5.11 Tactical Pants: "Hey, I can't find the link for these specific pants. Not sure which one to choose. Do you have the exact link for this pair of jeans? I like that color and cut."  

UrbanMan's reply: Hey Combatives, click on this link below. In the article, I write about both the Tac-Lite (Tactical) and the TDU pants. 511's titles - not mine. But I think you are referring to the 511 Tactical Pants (Tac-Lite). On you click on the link below You should see a link for the Tac-Lite pants. These are also referred to as the pants made famous by the FBI. The Tactical duty Uniform (TDU) pants is significantly heavier, almost like Judo Gi pants. Anyway, this link should work for you. Again click on the "Tac-Lite Pants" or the "Tactical Pants".

Shop 5.11 Tactical Online Today

Desert Survival Example

I received this e-mail from William R. "Hey Buddy, Saw this article that may interest you about a guy surviving in the Utah desert for three weeks. Don't know if you saw it, but it was about a retarded fellow who walked about a hundred miles before a helicopter saw him just before he would have died. I was wondering about any comments you have."

UrbanMan replies: William, I found that article here:

Autistic man survives 3-week ordeal in Utah desert

In short the article says a 28-year-old autistic, not retarded,  man barely survived three weeks in remote southern Utah. While he was an experienced mountaineer, he was out of his element in the harsh desert. The man, William LaFever, set off for a 150-mile journey along the wild Escalante River without food or equipment because it was was apparently stolen just before he started his trip.

He was found, clad only in hbis underwear, by a Search and Rescue helicopter, reportedly just in the nick of time.

Desert Survival Do's and Don'ts

Ration Your Sweat and Not Your Water. People have been found dead with water still in their canteens.
If I only had 2 quarts of water with me and I had to walk for consecutive days to find help, I would be drinking 3/4 of that water throughout that first day/nights movement, knowing that I could go a day without water without too badly diminishing my capabilities,...but into the second day on little or no water, then my body would just quit working.  You can last about 48 hours without water,..maybe just a little longer, but that second 24 hour period will bring about a severe degradation of your physical capabilities.  Ration your sweat and not your water also means to conduct most, if not all, of your survival/movement tasks out of the direct exposure to the Sun.  That means moving and doing surrvival tasks at early morning, late evening and at night, holeing up during the day to conserve your energy and bodies water. 
Protect Exposed Parts of the Skin from the Sun.  He made a mistake in not wearing any clothing. When a person is hot, the instinct is to take off clothes, but this increases the evaporation effect, furthering the  dehydration process of that person. Better to wear enough clothes to protect exposed skin from the Sun which rapidly evaporate body moisture and damage the skin (sun burn) further requiring water. The body will send water to the skin, the body's largest organ, to protect and repair the skin leaving less water for maintaining blood volume and major organ function.   The Arab's are not known for their,....well let's just say "sophisication", but they have lived in the desert for hundreds of years and dress in layers of clothing, protecting their skin from the onslaught of the Sun.

Be Prepared with (at least) minimal Kit.  This man's gear was stolen. I get that. But he did not have any kit on his body? No knife, Fire starting items,....canteen or Camel-Bak or anything at all? No poncho?  No survival cords or string?  Speaking of string, I was showing someone the other day the uses of those parachute braided survival bracelets with fastex buckles....they can be used a snap links, hold gear onto your Bug Out Bag, then taken apart and gutted for the white 55 lb test line line of the green nylon outer cord, if/when the need for cordage.  Can be used for fishing line, building survival shelters or traps and snares and many other uses. 

Water before Food.  This individual (William LaFever) lost about 100 lbs in almost three weeks, demonstrating that you can go along way or a starvation diet but you'll be dead in 48 hours or so without water. 

Friday, August 10, 2012

Global Economic Collapse Predicted

Nouriel Roubini, the economist whose dire warnings earned him the nickname “Dr. Doom,” said two weeks ago that the recent slowdowns in the U.S., Europe, and China is proof that the global “perfect storm” scenario he predicted is on its way.

“(The) 2013 perfect storm scenario I wrote on months ago is unfolding,”  say's Roubini.  He is predicting  four specific elements would come together to create the perfect global economic crisis: a stalled U.S. economy, the EU debt crisis, a slowdown in emerging markets (China), and conflict in Iran.

Roubini further declares that this crisis will be far worse than the financial crisis of 2008.  A U.S. recovery is not going to happen at least for many years to, according to Roubini.   The problems in Europe, an economic slowdown in China and oil prices that will rise sharply, due to the fall of the dolar and the crisis in the Middle East, particulary with Iran, will all make a America's economy much worse, say's Roubini. 

Author and Economist James Howard Kunstler claims that we are past the point where solutions
to our economic problems are possible.  He has long been a voice of society's waste of resources and
now that he basically say's there is no hope to correct the course taking us to a brutal collapse, we now
need a response plan to help us best brace for the impact of the coming consequences. And, as Kunstler
advocates, we need it fast.

Europe is taking a turn for the worst as the new French Socialist President Fran├žois Hollande is driving
captial and businesses out of France with his "tax the rich policy" and Greece just declared that they are
in a Great Depression.  

Even Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner say's that "a wave of tax increases and billions of dollars in
automatic spending cuts will cause a lot of damage to the fragile economy" and this is coming from a
guy who has been all rosy and who has an interest in making the Country believe that things are not as
bad as they really are.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Ammunition Re-Call

We just received word that Federal Law Enforcement Agencies are working with Winchester on a potentially serious production error that may effect all recently Winchester produced .40 S&W, 180 grain, bonded service ammunition.   Although the most predominate use of this cartridge is within Federal Law Enforcement, we all have seen sales of ammunition marked "Law Enforcement Only"

Some of the cartridge casings were produced without a flash hole. The lack of a primer flash hole eliminates the ability of this Service cartridge to fire – this cannot be detected as no visual inspection by anyone can detect this manufacturing defect and it would only be known at the time the person attempted to fire their handgun.

Affected ammunition will have a four character “day code”, two letters, two numbers, i.e., FA42. All Q4355 with day codes beginning with the letter F and any Q4355 with the two letter combination of EN are included in this recall. See picture below.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

More Gun Control Commentary

HalfElf has left a new comment on your post "Gun Control Looming": "Saw on google search yesterday that the ATT (UN Arms Treaty) has been rejected by the US. Somebody must had told his nibbs that maybe pissing off 1/3 of the voting population might not be a good idea less than 4 months before the election."

UrbanMan's reply:  I listened to an interview with noted second amendment author John Lott yesterday. I'll paraphrase what he had to say: The U.S. did not reject the treaty. Repeat. The U.S. did not reject the treaty. Secretary Clinton just did not go to the UN meeting to vote on it........because, you see, she does not have to in order for it to be placed into effect.

If two thirds of the U.N. main body (general membership - not the security council) votes for this treaty, then this treaty becomes defacto law for at least four years unless rejected by the President or the Senate. If this treaty goes into effect it will have the effect of a Constitutional Amendment. Supreme Court precedence is that International Treaties, that the U.S. is a signature to, trumps U.S. Law. And again, the U.S. will be de facto signatures unless either the President or the Senate reject it.

Figure the odds on a newly re-elected Barack Obama rejecting this Treaty. Figure the odds on Sen Harry Reid allowing a vote on this in the Senate. And what is scary is that only a reported 51 Senators were against the original treaty. The treaty would require nations to register guns and their owners. Certain types of guns will be outlawed. And the subsequent U.S. Government performance in the treaty provisions will most assuredly require no notice inspections of those people considered to own "arsenals". There would be no other way to determine extnet of the export of firearms.

This is bad news not only Survivalists and Gun Owners but for the American people as well. If you think 16,000 new IRS agents to enforce Obamacare is a large step towards massive Government control,.....imagine how many new hires in the BATF or maybe a newly created organization would do. On related news, there will be several attempts to limit internet access to ammunition especially if the current administration wins another term.

This is not intended to be a political article, just stating the facts as the Liberal and/or Progressive section of American politics has always been for gun control measures. Whether or not you believe the goal is some sort or "we know what is better for the American peope and their safety", or, if it is some evil plan for a massive government controlled socialist society doesn't change the facts. Many other people think this way as well, since in the days following the Colorado Theatre shooting, gun sales in Colorado sky rocketed.

It's going to be much harder for people embracing some sort of preparedness posture to secure firearms and adequate ammunition for their security. The recent theater shooting in Colorado, of all things, recently pushed a couple that I have been dripping Survival and Preparedness to, to purchase a couple of additional firearms. I had previously helped this new to firearms couple select a couple of handguns, one a Glock 19 and the other a Taurus .38 special revolver. Last week they purchased a Ruger 10-22 carbine and a Mossberg 12 gauge shotgun.  They now feel much better about having to drive a few hundred miles east to get to their son's property in New Mexico in case the collapse situation warrants it.

Before any of you chastize me for the selection of these guns not being a couple of black rifles,....well, this is what the couple is comfortable with......and remember the first rule of a gun fight,...have a gun...if the government allows it.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Forecasted Drought and Food Shortages Will Make the Collapse Much Worse

So what's new with a drought? Haven't we always had some sort of drought warning? Aren't we big enough as a country to mitigate drought effects? The answers Drought Forecasted

A double-barreled dose of bad news came out Thursday: Not only did the drought worsen over the last week, but it's likely to widen and intensify through the end of October, according to the seasonal outlook prepared by government forecasters.

"Unfortunately, all indicators (short and medium-term, August, and August-October) favor above normal temperatures," the National Weather Service's Climate Prediction Center said in its Seasonal Drought report."We don't see a reason to say it will improve," Kelly Helm Smith, a specialist at the National Drought Mitigation Center, told reporters. "I'm in the Midwest," she said, referring to her office at the University of Nebraska in Lincoln, "it's really unpleasant."

The outlook noted that "a dramatic shift in the weather pattern" would be required "to provide significant relief to this drought, and most tools and models do not forecast this." Drought could take hold in the northern plains by October, the Climate Prediction Center added Moreover, last week saw a continued "downward spiral of drought conditions," according to the weekly report.

Adding to the drought concerns is Lester R. Brown, author of an article titled:  "The world is closer to a food crisis than most people realise".  He is the president of the Earth Policy Institute and also the author of Full Planet, Empty Plates: The New Geopolitics of Food Scarcity, due to be published in October

In the early spring this year, US farmers were on their way to planting some 96millon acres in corn, the most in 75 years. A warm early spring got the crop off to a great start. Analysts were predicting the largest corn harvest on record.

The United States is the leading producer and exporter of corn, the world's feedgrain. At home, corn accounts for four-fifths of the US grain harvest. Internationally, the US corn crop exceeds China's rice and wheat harvests combined. Among the big three grains – corn, wheat, and rice – corn is now the leader, with production well above that of wheat and nearly double that of rice.

The corn plant is as sensitive as it is productive. Thirsty and fast-growing, it is vulnerable to both extreme heat and drought. At elevated temperatures, the corn plant, which is normally so productive, goes into thermal shock.

As spring turned into summer, the thermometer began to rise across the corn belt. In St Louis, Missouri, in the southern corn belt, the temperature in late June and early July climbed to 100F or higher 10 days in a row. For the past several weeks, the corn belt has been blanketed with dehydrating heat.

Weekly drought maps published by the University of Nebraska show the drought-stricken area spreading across more and more of the country until, by mid-July, it engulfed virtually the entire corn belt. Soil moisture readings in the corn belt are now among the lowest ever recorded.

While temperature, rainfall, and drought serve as indirect indicators of crop growing conditions, each week the US Department of Agriculture releases a report on the actual state of the corn crop. This year the early reports were promising. On 21 May, 77% of the US corn crop was rated as good to excellent. The following week the share of the crop in this category dropped to 72%. Over the next eight weeks, it dropped to 26%, one of the lowest ratings on record. The other 74% is rated very poor to fair. And the crop is still deteriorating.

Over a span of weeks, we have seen how the more extreme weather events that come with climate change can affect food security. Since the beginning of June, corn prices have increased by nearly one half, reaching an all-time high on 19 July.

Although the world was hoping for a good US harvest to replenish dangerously low grain stocks, this is no longer on the cards. World carryover stocks of grain will fall further at the end of this crop year, making the food situation even more precarious. Food prices, already elevated, will follow the price of corn upward, quite possibly to record highs.

Not only is the current food situation deteriorating, but so is the global food system itself. We saw early signs of the unraveling in 2008 following an abrupt doubling of world grain prices. As world food prices climbed, exporting countries began restricting grain exports to keep their domestic food prices down. In response, governments of importing countries panicked. Some of them turned to buying or leasing land in other countries on which to produce food for themselves.

Welcome to the new geopolitics of food scarcity. As food supplies tighten, we are moving into a new food era, one in which it is every country for itself.

The world is in serious trouble on the food front. But there is little evidence that political leaders have yet grasped the magnitude of what is happening. The progress in reducing hunger in recent decades has been reversed. Unless we move quickly to adopt new population, energy, and water policies, the goal of eradicating hunger will remain just that.

Time is running out. The world may be much closer to an unmanageable food shortage – replete with soaring food prices, spreading food unrest, and ultimately political instability– than most people realise.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Gun Control Looming

I think I am less inclined then all of my friends and people I have worked with to buy into "conspiracy theories". A change of a few words,...a misperception,....or only hearing one side of the story or issue helps facilitate conspiracy stories. However, what was forwarded to me concerning our current adminstration's seeming dalliance with a concept called World Law really concerns me.

Most of us believe in three things:  1 - That we should not trust a government that does not trust us to own guns, and 2 - The U.S. constitution guarantees the right to own and bear guns. 

This right is necessary and central to the plans of all survivalists preparing for SHTF be it an economic collapse, total infrastructure failure or whatever label someone wants to put on The End Of The World As We Know It. 

A person I know who doesn't even own a gun sent me a link to a Lew Rockwell site referencing an article from Mac Slavo of SHTF Plan, a name all preppers and survivalists should recognize.

Five Words For the United Nations: FROM MY COLD DEAD HANDS by Mac Slavo, SHTF Plan

In January of this year reports began surfacing that members of the United Nations were conspiring with American politicians to further erode the Second Amendment rights of the people of these United States: “In New York, right here on our own shores, we’ve got a Trojan horse. They won’t accept U.S. firearms policy. They want to take the decision away from the U.S. electorate and undermine our Constitution.” ~Ambassador Faith Whittlesey, US Delegate to UN Small Arms Conference, January 2012

While actions at the UN posed a serious threat to our right to bear arms, few acknowledged the legitimacy of the issue and fewer still had even heard anything about it. The Obama administration is now just a matter of weeks away from joining other foreign powers in the signing of the Arms Trade Treaty at United Nations.

While many will argue that the new treaty will not restrict gun ownership in America, 2nd Amendment proponents disagree and maintain that the new treaty could pave the way for an eventual nationwide gun grab. Dick Morris, who is spearheading a petition to stop Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, and the United States from signing the treaty, explains the inherent dangers within: …Obama is planning, with Hillary, a backdoor move to impose gun control on the United States. It’s totally outrageous.

You know, Obama has not pushed gun control during his administration – a notable absence for a liberal. But it’s because he was saving the best for last. Hillary is now negotiating a small arms treaty in the United Nations… The purpose of the small arms treaty is to stop small arms, which they define as pistols, handguns, rifles, assault weapons, even machine guns from being exported to other countries. … What Obama is doing with Hillary is to negotiate a treaty that would allegedly stop individual citizens and businesses from selling their arms overseas.

To do that each country would be obliged to set up its own system of registration, and controls, and inventory controls… It’s entirely a backdoor effort to force gun registration and eventually bans and restrictions with the act of the United States Congress – to do it with international treaty. One of the deadly parts about this is that when a treaty is signed and made binding in the United States it acquires the force of a Constitutional Amendment. Under the Supremacy Clause, every Congress and every state legislature has to honor that treaty, unless a Constitutional Amendment is passed to the contrary or unless all the other signatories let the U.S. out of the treaty.