October 2016 Notes

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October FTX will begin at 1000 on the 29th and end at 1600 on the 30th.  Bring your own pumpkin and goblin costume.  Topics to discuss are IFAKs, Land-Nav, long-term food storage, and disaster-preparedness communications.




Much has been written recently on Syria, Russia, and the possibility of WWIII.  It does look like we have a foreign policy conflict where we are wanting one thing but doing another.  And not just in Syria.  There is a problem there that needs fixing there.  It makes little sense to bring the problem here, not wanting to fix it here, then saying the problem is fixed back there.  Russia has a foreign policy that recognizes the problem there in Syria and they know if it’s not fixed there, it will come to them directly and it will be much more difficult to solve that problem when that happens in the near future.  The big problem is it looks like we can’t agree on how that gets done.  And if you look at the track record of our State Department, well, it’s not exactly confidence inspiring.




This of course leads to a lot of posturing and policy speeches as an effort at warfare by other means.  One really blatant item on that list is the story about some B-2 bombers making practice runs with dummy bombs over the test range in Nevada recently.  This is not news mostly because the B-2’s are (very expensive) bombers, and we should expect them to practice bombing runs with (cheap) dummy bombs in Nevada.  From time to time.  What makes this news is the propaganda twist of saying the dummy bombs are specifically modeled after the B-61 Mod 11 Thermonuclear bombs.  Saber rattling  with 1200 pounds of plastic and steel dummy bombs is one thing, but the actual mention of a real B-61 is not meant for domestic consumption.  Next to nobody inside the U.S. knows anything about our nuclear arsenal, and the reason we don’t mention those kinds of details is because we want everybody to sleep at night.


If the U.S. government wants to whip their B-61’s out and wave them around, maybe we should take a little peek at the real destructive forces behind these little jewels.  Maybe you should develop a little respect for exactly what we may be in for once these things get hitched up and sent off for a short ride.  Having spent some time, way, way back around these sorts of things, here is the nickel tour.




The best look at the B-61 (all variants) is at nuclearweaponarchive.org.  Nothing classified here.  Not enough detail to make you a weapons expert with these things, but you’ll learn a smidgen about oralloy, Lithium-6, and IHE.  You’ll soon learn the B-61 Mod 11 is not just the run of the mill bunker buster, but a smallish hydrogen bomb (no such thing) that targets “things” that might be several hundred meters below the ground level,  horizontal or vertical , with an equivalent  yield of up to 340,000 tons of TNT all in one spot for just a few microseconds.  The yardstick for nuclear bombs is always, Hiroshima, and that was just a speck under 15,000 tons and that whopper weighed 10,000 pounds.  Our little B-61 is only 12 foot long and weighs in at 1200 pounds.  That silvery pick-nick basket sized thing in the middle is 500 pounds of pure meanness just waiting to leap out.  All those other parts are there just to make it easy to deliver.  Technology sure is great, isn’t it!


So now we have our B-2 loaded up with 16 of these little B-61 thingies in both the rotary bomb dispensers and we’re cruising to bust up somebody’s party in just a little while.  Exactly what can we expect from our little toys once the lights start changing color and our special delivery is on it’s way?




Well, as it turns out, yes, there’s an app for that.  More or less. You can spend several hours playing with this thing.  Here is an example how it works.  Remember, we’re not actually planning large-scale destruction and loss of life on U.S soil here, just putzing around with the theory behind it all.  First, you’ll see that the main map is just google maps and you can navigate to any spot in the whole world.  Let’s pick someplace familiar though, just to bring things home.  Greensboro Coliseum.  Seating capacity – 23,000. 





Today, we’ll say it’s empty, along with the parking lot and everyone in the neighborhood is enjoying the last 30 minutes of their ethereal existence.  Over on the right column, you’ll see there is a short list of options. For Option 1, we’ve selected our empty coliseum.  In Option 2, we’ve selected an off the shelf B-61 unit.  In Option 3, we want to hit the ground (real easy if you know anything about gravity) and then check both those little boxes to see how big our paychecks will be, if we worked on commission. All that’s left is Option 4.  Click the big red button to get that little taste of Global Thermonuclear War in your neighborhood.  It should look something like this:







But wait, there’s more.  Not only did we make a 200 foot deep hole a quarter of a mile wide, as a bonus, one that you always get with surface detonations (air burst works entirely different),  we just lofted highly contaminated dirt and debris, covering a 30 mile wide swath, all the way to Richmond, Virginia.  Woo Hoo!  That ought to clean out the kudzu for the next 10,000 years.  And we can do that 31 more times while we’re flying the afternoon away.  Isn’t war great!




Well now, wasn’t that fun?  Let’s try something else.  It’s not that we don’t like having 1350 of these B-61′ sitting around, each waiting for their own “special day”.  Deterrence is a great thing.  A reminder that “Strength Thru Superior Firepower” is just the shadow of “Strength Thru Superior Diplomacy”.  And we can drop diplomats on your little foreign capital all day long.


Operation Plumbbob, Stokes test, 19 kt, August 1957

Operation Plumbbob, Stokes test, 19 kt, August 1957







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September 29th thru October 2nd was this fall’s PATCON in Tarboro.  The program was on various methods of communications and map reading and covered a lot of material.  The map and compass class was based on the story “The Patrol”, by Dan Morgan, and those nine chapters contain a lot of information on small team patrolling techniques and methods that make for good reading for everybody.   During the  demonstration on low power HF radio communication, by NC Scout,  we made contact with a local ARES network that was practicing emergency communications during and after a hurricane.  The demonstration on using as SDR radio showed how monitoring such transmissions could be done with minimal equipment.  Later on we had a brief demonstration of the use of a small Yagi antenna for direction finding and for directing your radio transmissions to a certain location.  The traditional B-B-Q luncheon was served right after another detailed demonstration of proper application of the CAT tourniquet.  The round table discussion covered other forms of communications and also what it takes to be properly prepared to live for the first 90 days after a disaster, where all help is cut off.  And one of the items won at the raffle was a backpack filled with food, water and survival equipment for 5 days.  Another was a Henry AR-7 .22 caliber survival rifle.  All very good and timely with Hurricane Matthew aiming straight for the coast of North Carolina.  Thanks to everyone that came and participated this fall, and to those that gave the presentations and made the event a success.  And special thanks to Brock for pulling it all together for the tenth time and hosting the PATCONS at such a great location as Dixieland.  Next spring, PATCON will again be the first weekend in June, so mark your calendars and start planning to attend.

September 2016 Notes

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September FTX will commence at 1000 on the 24th and run thru 1500 on the 25th. Topics to discuss are water purification methods and useful knot tying. This will be the weekend before NC PATCON. Anyone planning on attending needs to send Brock your monies today or sooner.

Hurricane activity has increased this month, so it would be a good time to review your emergency plans for your families. The Emergency Plan forms can be had from FEMA.  It’s a good thing to plan ahead.  Make a plan, and then practice that plan to make sure it works for you.






Just last month, Germany’s Defense Minister called upon all Germans to stockpile food and water in case of an attack or catastrophe. “The population will be obliged to hold an individual supply of food for ten days.”   A Concept for Civil Defense.  Great that things are going so remarkably well here that our government actually discourages anyone from keeping a supply of food and water.   Just a thought.




Germany Tells Citizens: Stockpile Food and Water


If you need some help figuring your way thru short-term preparedness, there is a good reference recently from George Patton.






If you think your best option is to just get as far away as possible from your part of the world that may be headed  into the mud, Matt Bracken wrote several years ago about why these times are the best ever to find you a good used sailboat and spend some time exploring your options on the water.  Potentially less stressful and no lawn to mow.  


Here’s a good place to start if you already have some skills.  40 footer, already in Florida.  $50,000.  Not perfect but good enough to get underway.



Morgan Out Island 41 foot




An important piece of gear to consider, if you’re about to go wandering about, is an upgrade to your precious and indispensable little smart phone.  Planning ahead dictates you take a look at a SatPhone.  Lots of uses and no roaming charges in the whole world.  A little iffy os signal as you travel nearer the poles.  You weren’t planning on camping out near McMurdo Bay anyway. A pdf put out for First Responders outlining the capabilities and sensibilities of carrying one of these little gems is worth the read.  Voice, text, and your own wi-fi hotspot when you’re in a tight spot.  They call them “Instant Infrastructure” for a reason, and well worth the small price as insurance against the unexpected.






Just remember that events can unfold quickly and change for the worse, or the better, in a big way.



Original Assault Rifle



Even if you’re heading for other parts on a boat, it’s still a good idea to have a good pack to have your gear organized for that occasional overnight excursion ashore.  The current Gear Tasting video at ITS Tactical has a short review on the  LBT 1476A-V2 pack with a detachable sustainment pack  from London Bridge Trading.  A great place to shop when you have an unlimited budget.  




screenshot-lbtinc.com 2016-09-04 14-05-34


For comparison, the new standard issue backpack that lets you carry even more of your stuff deep into third world hell-holes is the Improved Load Bearing Equipment backpack.    Might make surplus MOLLE equipment a little cheaper if everyone starts buying these new style packs.  Looks like it goes against current wisdom of packing less and gaining some mobility.  How much stuff do you really want to lug around for the next 20 km and then have to actually do something that requires your brain when you get there?



Speaking of training, our buddy Max is finally leveraging his extensive professional training and experience into  a premium, subscriber service on the web.  Pontificating  (for free) on the web takes a lot of his time that would be better spent training  at his camp.  Low level basic stuff can be had from a lot of good sources (for free).  We’ve done that here for years.  The premium, hands-on, and you might actually get dirty and sweaty and not get to play with your phone every ten minutes sort of stuff isn’t available just anywhere, anytime, for everybody with a RealTree camo hat.  Rural  Buddy Team training at Mason Dixon Tactical and Combat Team Tactics and Combat Patrol training from Max are pretty much the “Gold Standard”, short of going back to Fort Benning for a couple months.  Maybe not for everybody, but for those serious about their training, make this a priority while it’s still available.





Not an Assault Rifle

August 2016 Supplemental

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It’s  a bit hypnotizing to watch another big American city burn for three nights with race riots, and Europe implode under the pressure of the invading horde of Muslims, and the MSM totally spewing propaganda over the Presidential election.  This has all been in the making for quite some time.  The reason for Community Preparedness Teams, Mutual Assistance Groups, and Militias incredible growth over the past couple of decades has been because many people can see where this road leads  and want to be ahead of the curve of this country’s  disintegration.   The time to kick back and enjoy the ‘bread and circuses’ is long gone.  You probably will admit you don’t have enough ammo or supplies to get thru the next 10 years of revolution.  You can make the most of what you have by working on increasing your INTEL base and making good plans.


In William Lind’s 4th Generation Warfare Handbook, there is a short chapter called  “Light Infantry Training Objectives”.  The differences between standard Army Line Infantry and 4GW Light Infantry is described as mostly one of pacing.


Patience:  The need for patience is, perhaps, the greatest difference between light infantry and line infantry.  Light infantry operations proceed much more slowly, primarily due to the requirement for light infantry to operate stealthily.  It takes time to discover targets, reconnoiter suitable ambush sites, and move covertly.  Training must reflect this.


Speed:  While setting up a light infantry action requires patience, when action occurs, it must be over fast, before the enemy can react. The light infantry then normally goes covert again.  Decision-making in the light infantry is also characterized by speed.  Light infantry leaders must be prepared to react immediately to unforeseen situations with changes in their plans.  They seldom have the luxury of other forces coming to their rescue.  They cannot afford to be pinned down physically or mentally.  Snap decisions often mean the difference between success and failure.  Delaying a decision once action commences is usually dangerous.


“Jager” mindset:  Light infantrymen are hunters on the battlefield and every effort should be made to impress this upon new members of the unit.  All hunters require fieldcraft of a high order.  Light infantry should hunt enemies the same way they hunt game.


In a later chapter, Lind lists these light infantry training objectives as flexibility, weapons proficiency, learning to operate patiently, stealth and stalking, survival training, and physical fitness.  And also sections of land-nav, surveillance, and medical training.  Starting to sound familiar?




Russia is once again moving along the Ukrainian border and into Crimea.  Map and details over at Institute for the Study of War.  There is still the rumblings around Donbass area and separatists that Russia could care less about if they weren’t operating too closely to their important Black Sea bases in Crimea.   There is a whole lot of movement of men and equipment by air, land and sea.  Worked pretty well last time.   And when you get a look at the local militias, they are doing the same dumb things we see with militias here.  They make radio pouches for a reason.





And not too far away from the Black Sea region, Russia recently made some arrangement with Iran for  temporary forward staging at the airfield in Hamadan.  From there the Tu-22M3 bombers fly less than 1000 km to get to Syria, flying straight over Iraq.  Round trip —  about an hour.  The Tu-22 is a little bigger than our old F-111 and a bit smaller than our old B-1B, that we still fly over there regularly.  Round trip — about 15 hours.






But before you get too worried about the #2 competitor for the Super Power of the World title, there is this quick summary, from Russia, about how they’re not interested in risking their new-found successes in capitalism by starting any large-scale wars with the West.  Business is good when you’re swimming in a glut of oil.


And this is where this long-winded lecture is going:  our country has been sputtering around with an overall strategy plan from George Kennan based on a post WWII world view.  The military has castrated anyone that could clearly espouse the role of the U.S. military on the world stage.  What that has left is short termed political/special interest efforts to steer the small twists and turns of foreign policy and trade agreements that are not built with the purpose of positioning the U.S. on solid ground internationally.  Domestically, those same political/special interest efforts are working to dumb down the populace through a culture war.  This is the biggest threat to anyone wanting to preserve  American ideals.    What are we doing to stop that?   This is the time for 4th Generation Warfare and  we need to choose our battles wisely.  As Regan  pointed out back in the spring of 1961,



“Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children’s children what it was once like in the United States where men were free.” 



August 2016 Notes

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August FTX will commence at 1000 on the 20th at OP1, Training Area North.  We have some new maps to work with for Land-Nav and also will be continuing the FBI Pistol Qualification Drill that we started last month.  The FTX date has been moved up to accommodate those wanting to go Prepper Camp in Saluda on 16-18 SEPT, and NC Patcon 28 SEPT – 3 OCT, and feel it’s just too many weekends with meetings around Labor Day weekend.

Depending on how this years Presidential Election goes, it might be wise to enjoy one last holiday that celebrates the “workingman’s holiday”, as an American.  That still has to mean something.



The funeral for Mike Vanderboegh was held on Saturday, 13 August, down in Leeds, AL.  Mike finally succumbed to cancer on the 10th.  He was a good friend and a Patriot.  The family requests in lieu of flowers donations be made to the American Cancer Society.



MV at Gravelly Point RTC Rally






There is a short article on a configurable water filter,  via KitUp, from Recoil Mag.  A little more complicated than your regular Survival Straw, the MUV Adaptable Water Filter from Renovo  would be useful when working in certain conditions.  Like Rio.







And to carry your Survival Straw, and some other gear, discretely,  there is a very nice looking and functional bag from Grey Ghost Gear.  The Wanderer Bag.  From those  little guys at BreachBangClear.







That Wanderer Bag would make a good component in your Emergency Plans  for dealing with threats you might face in public places.  Lots of crazy things going on in the bigger cities these days, especially in those with lots of crazy rules “intended to reduce gun violence”.    A few good recommendations from ITS Tactical on the subject.  Think of it as  your most important  Personal Protection Detail.



Part of any PPD is most likely your favorite AR style rifle, which is really handy if you’ve trained with it a lot and know how to zero it for optimum use.  This story, also from ITS Tactical, tells you how to figure that out.  All without mentioning “maximum point blank range” is  almost 280 yards for XM855.  And in practice, anything over about 250 yards goes to OverWatch anyway.  Just to make sure.  Good stuff starts 7:00 minutes in to that video.







Been re-reading “Brave New War” by John Robb here lately.  That book was written in 2006 and looks back on the  second Iraq War  in the Persian Gulf and Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan.  Goes into a lot of depth describing the evolution of wars leading up to the current  proxy wars with insurgents and the basics of 4th Generation Warfare.  A more specific study comes from The Intercept, where a new batch of SIDToday were published.  This batch is from late 2003 and detail the struggle of the NSA and the military to understand and cope with Iraqi insurgent communications and deployment of IEDs.  The high-tech equipment and strategy of the West was initially a hindrance  and took quite a while to shift gears to deal with low tech.  A lot of those techniques developed by the NSA back then are still in use today and in use everywhere.  Can you say, “Utah Data Center”?







And finally, from NCScout,  a story with local flavourBrocken Specter, II.  Quite likely a conversation we all will be having soon enough.







brushbeater brocken spectre, II

July 2016 Notes

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July FTX will commence at 1000 hours on the 30th at Training Area North.  Come up early friday night if you can.  Subjects to be covered are IFAKs/Med Kits,  how to pack for a three-day security patrol, and recon techniques.  This will be our first shooting exercise in a while.  We will have a few NRA Certified instructors on hand and will be practicing the timed FBI  qualification shoot.  Review video at the middle of the training video list.  So bring your pistol bag, and bring a friend and their pistol bag, and we’ll see how this goes.  And yes, there will be a range safety briefing beforehand, thanks for asking.


For those of you using Signal for secure texting and phone calls, there is a story at The Intercept covering a few extra steps you should consider, just to ensure your OPSEC is as complete as you know it should be.


Although Signal is well-designed, there are extra steps you must take if you want to maximize the security for your most sensitive conversations — the ones that could be misinterpreted by an employer, client, or airport security screener; might be of interest to a snooping government, whether at home or abroad; or could allow a thief or hacker to blackmail you or steal your identity.



In the July 8th edition of the Appalachian Messenger, there is a story that was a guest post by John Meyers, also found at ZeroGov, about planning your training for less of the extreme SHTF scenarios and on more of the common everyday scenarios that you will be regularly experiencing when you’re not out fighting that Zombie Horde.



What this community needs is an accurate threat analysis.  Threats need to be defined and essentially listed out from the most likely to the least likely to occur. One is more likely to encounter a crime on the street, before ISIS shows up in your bedroom. You are going to encounter a home invasion or an active shooter before an insurgency against the United States or Mad Max II.



Our buddy Max also has a few words on how his training curricula fits in to this way of thinking.



So I think with some individuals out there, the training progression is misunderstood. I don’t expect the Chinese to be parachuting in over my house tonight. But I want to prepare you for threats with a holistic approach to training. Because the flip side of this is that if you don’t consider it possible that there is a chance of a collapse in some form, that may result in anything from Balkanization, Rhodesia, or a total zombie apocalypse, then you are living in a sad state of normalcy bias. The list of potential threats is a continuum, from what may happen exiting the movie theater tonight, to when that cyber attack turns the lights off. If you are armed with a handgun or rifle, and find yourself in an active shooter terrorist situation, which appear to be becoming more common, why would you not think that the lessons from CTT on cover and concealment, fire and movement, individual movement techniques, awareness, scanning etc are not relevant to you and your family having a chance of surviving?



These two stories should set you on the right path to think about another story by Justin King over at ZeroHedge on the 5 stages of an insurgency, and who says now, after the police shootings in Dallas, we are in stage four.  According to that story, every revolution that has progressed to stage 4 has gone on to stage 5, which is widespread rebellion and insurrection.




The timing of all these events just happen to be leading up to the political party conventions next week in Cleveland and Philadelphia.  For the background preparations for the Cleveland convention, there is a good ORGCHART from our buddies at NORTHCOM available at Public IntelligenceThis is planning on a scale that makes FEMA proud.






Also, over at NC Renegade’s site, you’ll find this video from SouthernPrepper1.  Not so much a discussion of the FBI’s recommendation not to press charges for security breaches over her email scandal, but more to the point about the implications on the loss of governmental accountability and the further slide into WROL conditions.







Speaking of prepping, we just missed the  Survival Expo in Raleigh this past weekend.    This is part of a country-wide series of expos so you have a chance to catch the next one at Columbia at the end of this month.

Raleigh, North Carolina

Columbia, South Carolina



And one last thing.  Something on the humorous and maybe a little ridiculous side is this article from Radio Master Reports.  Ignore the frequency charts, but maybe after looking at twenty pictures of all those militia types, you can tell me what they’re all doing wrong.



Yeah.  Don’t be “that guy“!





June 2016 Notes

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June FTF will begin at 1400 on the 26th . Location: Training Area West.  Items to discuss are PatCon 9,  Land-Nav, and upcoming July FTX.  Weather should be about perfect for this time of the year.


A story to read this month is over at ITS Tactical on the subject of medkits and medical training.  Not so much on what stuff to get but more how to think about the why you’re going to need medkits and training, and how you’re going to use them, then figuring out what stuff will work best to get that done.  Some things are just mission specific.  This is another one.





PatCon 9 was a little different this time.  Only had about a quarter of the usual suspects show up.  But we still had a really good round table discussion and several  good equipment demos.  And the raffle included a couple great items like a Ruger 10-22 TacStar and a Uniden BCD436HP Home Patrol portable scanner.  Start planning now for PatCon 10 in the fall.  Most likely the weekend of 1-2 OCT.


Not the usual 100 person Big Top.



The Small Awning


The 100 meter walk for figuring pace count for the map and compass training.  Mine was 70, there and back both.  But that’s without any gear.



Hundred Meter Walk


And the family dog.  Real friendly, too.



The Pooch


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