No, that wasn’t a typo. A Greek crew took their attack helicopter surfing. (NSFW warning: an obscenity, if you happen to know modern Greek).
The pilots both survived, although their military careers might not. (Russia Today says that the Greek military claimed the aircraft had engine failure. We note that the Apache is a twin-engine helicopter, and even on a hot day has no trouble flying on one engine at sea level.
Below sea level? That’s a problem.
Remember, pilots: you can never beat the World Low Flying Record. You can only tie.
Now this is a clever thing, and a brilliant use of 3D Printing in combination with over-the-counter materials (in this case, carbon fiber tubes). Result: an ultralight carbon fiber and printed plastic bipod.
It’s from our dude, Guy in a Garage, and unlike some of his designs, you can build it yourself, or he’ll build one for you; you can email him at email@example.com. The files are here:
The ridiculously light weight (1.5 ounce) comes by sacrificing some of the adjustability of the common Harris bipod, requiring the legs to be individually removed from the bipod position and placed in the storage/traveling position, and using ultralight carbon fiber for the legs. By contrast this example of a Harris “ultra-light” bipod gives you much more flexibility in how to deploy it, and is more convenient to use, but adds 13 ounces to your firearm — 867% of the weight of the carbon-and-print rig.
The ultralight weight of this bipod allows it to be positioned much closer to the muzzle with much less effect on balance. Lots of Harrises are set fairly far back, just to keep the weapon closer its design balance point.
You know, a bayonet catch would make this a perfect thing. Otherwise, we’d fear the legs would, in time, wear away at the printed plastic of the adapter.
Well here it is. Took a couple hours to make but I think it turned out well. Let me know what the group thinks. Also if you guys want to check out more, hit me on Instagram @av12g
Hmm. Our Spectre was FDE. Other that that, it’s about perfect.
Ian Struggles with an RSC-1917
Ian finally came to grips with the early French semiauto rifle, the only semi widely used in WWI. The RSC-1917 was about 20 years ahead of its time, a baroque gas-operated design that was not only ahead of its time but also ahead of the ammunition consistency of the era. He found that it didn’t quite work.
We note that he’s firing it right-handed (he’s a lefty), probably to avoid the gentle caress of the operating handle on that bolt carrier. Note also the M1-style operating rod below the ejection port; that’s what makes the action move.
Turns out it’s short-stroking. I suspect there is some gunk in the gas system that needs to be cleaned out, and I will be working on that later today. However, I’m quite happy to have this type of problem, and not one of it being overused and liable to damage itself. I’ve got plenty of time to get it working right while I dig up some of its proprietary and extremely scarce clips, anyway.
And, being Ian, he did troubleshoot the ancient thing successfully:
Disassembled rifle; found the front couple inches of the gas piston gummed up with old hardened grease. I had to pry the piston out, and I have little doubt that’s the cause of the problems
This is what 100 years of sitting still, even in controlled storage, does for a firearm and its lubricants:
He’s got a cleaning job ahead … and then, he’s gotta find some clips if he wants to run it in a 2-gun match.
Frenchmen weren’t stupid… and postwar, they converted these things to repeaters. Just sayin’.
5th Circuit Panel Lets Defense Distributed Injunction Stand
In a procedural ruling on the ongoing Def Dist v US Department of State, a three-judge panel of the 5th Circuit Court let a preliminary injunction stand. Contrary to some of the half-assed reporting in the press (Popular Science, we’re lookin’ at you), this was not a ruling on the merits and it is not final or particularly precendential. (There is some better journalism on the ruling out there). Not surprisingly, a national socialist judge found that a bare assertion of “national security” by the State Department negates the 1st and 2nd Amendments; also, not surprisingly, said judge seemed to draw his reasoning and verbiage from the Brady gun-ban group’s amicus brief (which may be why some are freakin out). Yes, it is a profoundly anti-gun ruling but it’s a procedural ruling relative to a temporary injunnction, and it doesn’t change anything (except, perhaps, to stress the importance of removing domestic small arms and technical data appurtenant thereto, from the purview of the would-be UN-subordinates in the State Department).
Blog Ave Atque Vale, I
Some time ago, Mike Vanderboegh of the influential Sipsey Street Irregulars blog passed away. Mike was one of the two bloggers that helped ATF whistleblowers expose wrongdoing at the agency (the other was David Codrea). After Mike lost his last long fight, with cancer, his son continued the blog for a time, but has now closed it down.
Mike reminded everyone that a gun in your hand is a preferable option to a life on your knees…. Keep it legal. Keep it local…. And if the government is going to make of you a criminal, be the best one you can be.
We think we understand why he pulled the plug. Best of luck to him, and may his father rest forever in free soil.
Blog Ave Atque Vale, II
For quite a while, a gun blog we always enjoyed, Alphecca, has been on hiatus. Jeff Soyer, whose take on guns and libertarian politics was always entertaining, has said he plans it back, but we can relate to anyone getting worn down by daily blogging, with other things to do.
Usage and Employment
The hardware takes you only half way. The wetware in your brain housing group is what makes your weapons work.
Home Invaders become Out-vaders Under Fire
This video illustrates several points. First, three Black Lives Matter activists invade a home in Gwinnett County, GA (metro Atlanta area), working on two stereotypes of Asian businesspeople: (1) they keep lots of cash, and (2) they’re pushovers for violent crime. They kick the door and all three come in holding handguns in the movie-ready position, and spend the next two minutes in a disorganized search for something to steal. At about 2:04, everything changes.
By 2:11 in the video, it’s basically all over. The three first try shooting back, but quickly give it up as a losing proposition and flee in well-deserved terror. One of them (the creep in the dark jacket and the wig), career criminal Antonio Leeks, is dying, outside and off camera; Black Criminal Lives may Matter, but they sure are short (Leeks was 28). By the time the cops were on scene, he was assuming ambient temperature, and no one misses him except the mama that raised him wrong.
The third guy, who comes from inside on the right, passes in front of the firing woman in bug-eyed painic, and flees stage left and out the back door, once again proves the old adage that it is better to be lucky than to be good. He went through at such speed that, when the lady was on the phone to 911, she insisted that there were only two home invaders, the guys that went out the front door.
Unknown, left, and the late, unlamented Antonio Leeks (right). Bad cess to him.
When the woman comes on the scene, firing, she’s using appalling technique, one-handed, not particularly aiming, but she still won the gunfight, and there are several lessons there. An imperfect defense, aggressively applied — and, not to stereotype too much, but she came on in full Tiger Mother mode — is better than a perfect defense, deferred.
Also, criminals like these expect to use their guns for intimidation. Ask any homicide detective how many times he’s heard something like “I didn’t plan to shoot him,” or “I was only going to rob the guy!” from some crestfallen scumbag whose IQ 70 master plan for a $100-score robbery to buy some weed or oxys turned into life in prison with the stroke of a finger. Criminals are not expecting armed resistance, and, as you can see, it scares the crap out of them.
The other would-be criminal mastermind.
Consider what would have happened if that had been one criminal coming out against three cops. The criminal would be the one wearing the toe-tag; same when one hadji pops up shooting in front of a stick of our soldiers. These robbers were 3-to-1; they were the aggressors; they were presumably alert; they had every advantage, except mindset. They had the mindset of criminals, bullies. Their world is always shattered by effective resistance.
The good news is that one of these guys, Leeks, bled out in the driveway. (Leeks had leaks. Heh). The bad news is that, despite the other two nogoodniks being more recognizable in this camera than in their drivers’ license pictures, the cops still don’t have their cuffs on the other two skunks.
Finally, the lady did two things in this video that you should never do. She got away with them, but you might not:
She didn’t have good situational awareness and let a robber get behind her. Only his advanced state of HP saved her; if he had kept a cool head, he could have just shot her from his position in that side corridor, not fled past her and out the back door. You can’t count on getting a coward as a home invader, although the odds run that way.
She kept shooting from the doorway at the fleeing robbers. Don’t do that. Many cops and prosecutors will interpret this as a change of your status from defender to aggressor, with devastating consequences for your self-defense claim. As this is a legal issue and we are not lawyers (and definitely not your lawyers), we strongly urge you to read The Law of Self-Defense by Andrew Branca and attend one (or more!) of his LOSD seminars. In criminal-hostile, defender-friendly Gwinnett County you might get away with what this woman did; in criminal-cuddly Boston she’d be held without bail on murder charges.
Cops ‘n’ Crims
Cops bein’ cops, crims bein’ crims. The endless Tom and Jerry show of crime and (sometimes instantaneous) punishment.
He admitted that he made the stunning find when he peeked inside three old wooden boxes that had been left on a pile of rubbish outside J. Birnbach Inc.’s office Nov. 24, 2015.
Some workers were helping the company move to a new floor in the Diamond District building on Fifth Avenue near 47 Street and absentmindedly tossed the weathered boxes, authorities said.
Martinez pocketed the pricey stones, including one worth $3.2 million, court papers show.
He sold some of the diamonds to a jeweler in the same building where he found them for $74,000, according to the criminal complaint. He turned over the rest of the stones — including the priciest bauble — to authorities ….
So why is Martinez in trouble, and Birnbach’s isn’t trying to take it out of the hide of their own incompetent workers? Simple. Birnbach’s owners are connected. Martinez is nobody.
Pointing a Gun at Cops is Dumb, II
Yeah, we had this same headline last week, but another guy did it this week, in Charlotte, NC, with predictable first- and second-order results.
First-order result: a Charlotte-Mecklenburg cop shot him dead. Good. And predictable.
Second-order result: Black Criminals Lives Matter organized riots and looting in the city. Also predictable. Like a GEICO ad, “it’s what they do.”
Third-order result: the DOJ sent a crack team to the city. No, not Federal agants to restore order, the notorious “Community Relations Service” to help organize the riots. In retrospect, this too was predictable.
No word on whether the Feds get to keep some of the looted cash, hair weaves, and consumer electronics.
The Charlottesville cops have learned something interesting: 70% of the violent rioters and riot organizers were from out of state, and someone (the DOJ? International ANSWER? The SEIU? All have profited from Black Criminals’ Lives Matter) has been busing them in.
Awww Poor Bwadwey Manning Again
His fans, who call the poor, confused thing Chelsea, are whining again (they have to whine for him, because in the jug no one can hear you whine, except the other cons). Why? Because he’s tried to kill himself, can’t color between the lines of prison life, and is locked up in solitary. Call that con a Waaahmbulance!
Here’s the charge sheet[.pdf]. Basically, they’re going to punish him because his self-centered (as usual) suicide attempt forced a lockdown and Force Cell Move Team activation (the FCMT picks up and moves prisoners who won’t or can’t, in this case because of the suicide attempt, cooperate in their own transfer).
The Perils of Kathleen: You’re Kidding, She’s Still in the News? Edition
Here’s where we chronicle ongoing meltdown of the paranoid, vengeful and extremely anti-gun now-former Pennsylvania attorney general, Kathleen Kane. It’s almost over at long last.
21 Sep: The Two Faces of Kane. Brad Bumsted, who has written at book length on the Keystone State’s culture of corruption (everyone thinks his own state’s political elite is the crooked one, which ought to tell us something), writes about Kane.
The state’s chief law enforcement officer was convicted of multiple counts of perjury, obstruction of justice and official oppression. To smear a fellow prosecutor, Kane leaked secret grand jury material that ended up humiliating and embarrassing a third party, Philadelphia NAACP president J. Whyatt Mondesire. She orchestrated a “cloak and dagger” cover-up to obstruct the investigation….
Bumsted thinks her mob lawyers blew it by not putting her on the stand. In retrospect, that seems sensible, but we have the hindsight of knowing that their gamble failed utterly. Bumsted, who sat through the trial, came away convinced that she was guilty of at least some of the charges.
21: Sep: A Kane Coatholder Returns. In one of those cases that makes Pennsylvanians think that they do have a uniquely incestuous and corrupt political culture, former Kane Chief of Staff Blake Rutherford will be back as a “Special Advisor” to temporary AG Bruce Beemer. Rutherford will draw no pay from the AG’s office, instead living off his position as a partner in the “connected” Philadelphia law firm, Cozen O’Connor. Rutherford’s connections also include Clinton loyalist Mack McLarty, and this may be a play to land Beemer (and Rutherford) gigs in a future Clinton administration.
One day, Kane will be out of the headlines, and in prison. Roll on sentencing, 24 October.
Unconventional (and current) Warfare
What goes on in the battlezones of the world — and preparation of the future battlefields.
There are No Lone Wolves
Andrew McCarthy (the prosecutor who jailed the 1993 WTC bombers), building on work by Patrick Poole, notes that:
the actor initially portrayed as a solo plotter lurking under the government’s radar turns out to be — after not much digging – an alreadyknown (sometimes even, notorious) Islamic extremist.
As amply demonstrated by Poole’s reporting, catalogued here by PJ Media, “lone wolves” –virtually every single one — end up having actually had extensive connections to other Islamic extremists, radical mosques, and (on not rare occasions) jihadist training facilities.
The overarching point I have been trying to make is fortified by Pat’s factual reporting. It is this: There are, and can be, no lone wolves.
The very concept is inane, and only stems from a willfully blind aversion to the ideological foundation of jihadist terror: Islamic supremacism.
If “Because they are Arabs,” is too much of a tautology for you, this excellent old (1999) essay by Norvell deAtkine explains just what it is about Arabs that makes them completely third-rate at the Art of War. This is true even when they can be, man for man and, sometimes, small-unit-for-small-unit, born warriors.
Is it time to disband this thing yet, and letting all its bloatoverhead seek its own level in the Dreaded Private Sector™?
[S]even in ten employees felt “moderately informed” at best on the differences between service animals, therapy animals, and emotional support animals. That number includes 23 percent who said they are “not informed at all.”
Personally, we think just about any dog benefits just about any human (ditto horses, if you can afford them), and getting a dog has been a self-prescribed therapy for vets since long before a soldier-hating psychologist coined the term “PTSD” during the Vietnam War in an attempt to brand all veterans as unstable and dangerous.
Personally, we think that “service animals” are service animals, and we’ve yet to see a “therapy” or “emotional support” animal that was anything but some attention-craving Unique and Special Snowflake’s® pet. Vets with actual survivors’ guilt or other psychological stresses related to combat, all of which are lumped into the loosely defined and recklessly diagnosed “PTSD” by the quacks of the mental health industrial complex, tend to be the polar opposite of attention-craving. But what do we know about vets and combat? We never went to Harvard or Yale.
“Gross Mismanagement” in Denver
Well, that’s what we’ve come to expect from the DVA. Mismanagement. (Is “gross mismanagement” mismanagement x 144?. It seems that way). In this case, it’s the more-than-double-the-cost overruns of the already gold plated Denver VAMC in Aurora, CO. And there’s this little detail from ABC:
A report from the department’s internal watchdog also said a former senior VA official, Glenn Haggstrom, knew the project was veering toward huge cost overruns but didn’t tell lawmakers that when he testified before Congress in 2013 and 2014.
And, as always, there has been no accountability:
Sloan Gibson, deputy secretary of veterans affairs, has said that everyone involved in the cost overruns has either retired or was transferred or demoted. No one has been fired or criminally charged.
Hey, a .gov job is an entitlement, and that’s ironclad. Taking care of veterans was a promise, and those come with an expiration date, in Washington.
Not surprisingly, Congress want Haggstrom, VA official Stella Fiotes, and other officials who lied to them investigated for perjury (Denver Post / The Coloradoan), but that’s not going to happen; the DOJ has the corrupt officials’ back.
After the DVA’s profound failure to manage the construction, it has been transferred to the Army Corps of Engineers, which has tried to cut some of the pricey artistic touches (like $8 million extra in ornamental landscaping) but the Corps managers say that contracts committed to by the DVA limit how much they can cut.
VA Stage-Manages Bogus “Reform” Legislation
VA officials, resistant as always to firing the crooks, thieves, patient-abusers and incompetents on their rolls, have thrown their weight behind a a bogus “reform” bill called the “Veterans First Act” which doesn’t actually do anything, but preserves all the protections bad workers have: “Veterans First” actually puts veterans last, behind the bad workers. The VA managers and bad employees want to substitute this toothless bill for a toothsome one that has already passed the House with strong bipartisan majorities. Dan Caldwell of Concerned Veterans of America explains what’s wrong with this Veterans Last Bill at USA Today.
We disagree with Dan, though, and think the real question is this:
Isn’t it time to disband this thing?
Lord Love a Duck!
The weird and wonderful (or creepy) that we didn’t otherwise get to.
A Twitter Alternative?
Twitter’s gone round the bend, banning wrongthink — most recently Tennessee Law professor Glenn Reynolds, whom they unbanned later, after applying their point-of-view (in this case, in favor of Black Criminals’ Lives Matter rioters) censorship to his account.
We’ve heard rumblings that gab.ai is a potential alternative that will not have Twitter’s Owellian Trust and Safety Commissariat enforcing modern collegiate-style censorship. Instead, the perpetually offended can censor what they themselves see, and not impose their opinions on others. We signed up, and we’re in for the waiting list:
Although we’re on the list, we don’t think #64,999 is anywhere near the head of the line. And if it’s anywhere near the end, Gab is going to be struggling for a time.
One of these guns is not like the others;
One of these guns just doesn’t belong.
Can you guess which gun is not like the others,
Before I finish my song?
(Puzzled international readers, that’s from a long-running and hell-for-saccharine TV kids’ “educational” show which everybody’s mother made him watch at least a few times). Now that we’ve had our sing-along, here’s the photo. Which one doesn’t belong?
And all of the pistol-things on the table are, indeed, the sort of thing you’d expect from Ghanaian village blacksmiths — except the Luger P.08 that’s the second one back on the right.
Wonder what its story is? Unfortunately, some Ghanaian copper has probably already either thrown it into a smelter, or sold it back onto the black market.
The constant panoply of odd creations that turn up on Impro Guns illustrate many things, but one of the major ones is, “What a simple machine a gun is to build,” and another, “How universal the desire for firearms is,” Most of these improvised guns are made where strict gun control reigns, or tries to. A great many of them are made by criminals and terrorists. Others, however, seem to be the product of hobbyists, and still others, made by or for people who simply feel a need for self-defense, a need that is never met perfectly by The State.
Indeed, in most strict gun control jurisdictions, the state makes nearly no effort to step in and defend its disarmed populace. Look at LA or Chicago, with hundreds and thousands of murders respectively, most of which go unsolved even though none of them seem to be committed by criminal masterminds. So at some point, the peaceable and formerly law-abiding person breaks out and builds himself, or has built for himself, a tool of self defense.
The criminal element, meanwhile, skips simple defensive handguns and long guns, and goes right to making suppressed automatic weapons, as the police in Australia have discovered. The Australian gun ban (semi-autos and pump and lever shotguns) has not seriously inconvenienced the criminal element, which is well armed with auto weapons on the conceptual level of the Sten or Mac-10. Criminals used to avoid these weapons because of the disparity in consequences for getting caught with one, vis-a-vis a revolver. Now, a criminal is as well hung for a sheep as a lamb, and goes direct to St. Valentine’s Massacre capability.
The only consequences you can always count on are unintended consequences.
Note: we’re still running late here, over 12 hours behind schedule, for which we beg your forbearance. Your Humble Blogger has been a bit under the weather, and dealing with it by drinking plenty of fluids, skipping PT (unfortunately) and spending plenty of time snoring in the recliner with Small Dog Mk II. These are wondrous and joyful activities indeed, but they don’t get the blog written on schedule. Bear with us — Ed.
Sepsis develops when the body mounts an overwhelming attack against an infection that can cause inflammation in the entire body. When that happens, the body undergoes a cascade of changes, including blood clots and leaky blood vessels that impede blood flow to organs. Blood pressure drops, multiple organs can fail, the heart is affected, and death can result.
“Your body has an army to fight infections,” said Dr. Jim O’Brien, the chairman of Sepsis Alliance. “With sepsis, your body starts suffering from friendly fire.”
Yeah, but we never heard of it! It can’t be that big a deal, can it?
Sepsis appears to be rising. The rate of hospitalizations that listed sepsis as the primary illness more than doubled between 2000 and 2008, according to a 2011 C.D.C. study, which attributed the increase to factors like the aging of the population, a rise in antibiotic resistance and, to some extent, better diagnosis.
Sepsis is a contributing factor in up to half of all hospital deaths, but it’s often not listed as the cause of death because it often develops as a complication of another serious underlying disease like cancer. So although death certificates list sepsis as a cause in 146,000 to 159,000 deaths a year, a recent report estimated that it could play a role in as many as 381,000.
Kind of puts all the media hysteria about guns in perspective, doesn’t it?
Abandoned Russian or Warsaw Pact MRL, beneficiary of African maintenance, recently captured by UN forces.
There’s a rumble of undernews out of the UN’s various missions in Mali, and — fans of giant international NGOs should probably sit down for this — it does not seem like the Blue Helmets (and their camp followers, the Armies of Overpaid Asshats in White SUVs) have ushered the poor Saharan country into the bright sunlit uplands of civilized states yet.
Instead, it looks like the mission might be failing, unless the mission is to spend lots of money and let white people from New York and Geneva feel important. (That box has been checked).
A year after a peace document, the Agreement for Peace and Reconciliation in Mali, was signed with great fanfare, and immediately after its one-year anniversary was feted by UN diplomats, the signatories continue merrily blowing hell out of each other, and, from time to time, their would-be UN masters. Twelve peacekeepers found the peace of the grave in May, and more in June.
The big dog — the “peacekeepers,” if there were any peace for them to keep — has the soporific title: United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission. (Numberless Powerpoint decks were sacrificed in the deveopment of those buzzwords).
UNMISM — the opposite of ORGASM?
It’s also known as MINUSMA, which is (we believe) the Francophone version of the acronym. French is widely spoken in Mali, a former French colony.
Thee are several other UN missions in country, including a countermining element, the UN Mine Action Service (UNMAS).
Most of the UN Peacekeepers are from small and poor countries’ small and poor armies (it’s actually a profit center for these nations’ leaders, just like it was for Landgraf Friedrich II of Hesse-Kassel). The real teeth of UNMISM are Dutch attack helicopters (highly capable Apaches) and UNMISM’s cooperative relationship with French troops also supporting Malian sovereignty. (The French have sensibly kept their troops under their own command).
And of course, it wouldn’t be the UN without a “No $#!+ Sherlock,” moment:
The UN Security Council, in a press statement, reaffirmed that all forms and manifestations of terrorism represent a serious threats to international peace and security.
Terrorism is a threat to peace. Really? How many >100 IQs in >$1000 suits worked on that statement for how many hours?
But They’re Still Trying
UNMISM (aka MINUSMA) does have a website where they issue press releases. Most recent good news is the seizure and destruction of a large cache of weapons including grenades and a lot of crew-served and artillery ammunition.
Des actions terrestres, aériennes et héliportées de la Force de la MINUSMA ont permis d’identifier le 21 septembre une importante cache d’armes dans les environs de In Tachdait, localité située à 80 km au Nord de Kidal.
Cette cache d’armes abritait également un important stock de munitions, dont des roquettes de 107 mm et 122 mm, utilisées lors d’attaques indirectes de villes, ou la fabrication d’IED.
Le stock a été neutralisé sur place.
Actions by the land, air and heliborne forces of UNMISM made possible on 21 September the identification of an important arms cache in the vicinity of Tachdait, a village located about 80km north of Kidal.
This arms cache also comprised an important ammunition dump, of 107 mm and 122 mm rockets, used in indirect-fire attacks on towns or for the manufacture of IEDs.
The dump was neutralized in place.
Prepared for FOOM:
These particular rockets are not going to hurt anybody. But finding enough weapons never seems to be a problem in Africa. No matter how little food, water, and education is available, there’s always rifles, rockets, and artillery.
The Japanese 3D Printed gun inventor was arrested in May 2014 and sentenced to two years in prison in October of that same year, for posting a video on YouTube which showed him firing a 3D printed gun of his own design. This is that video.
Imura’s Zig Zag revolver (he named it so, because of the similarity of its lockwork to the 19th Century Mauser Zig Zag revolver) was only designed and manufactured to shoot blanks, and that’s all it ever did, but that didn’t stop Japanese officialdom landing on him with both tabi.
Prosecutors for the case argued that Imura could have caused major damage to society as he had made data for the 3D models of his firearms easily available on the internet.
Imura-san’s sentence seems to be up, a little bit ahead of time. Or, at least, someone claiming to be him is tweeting up a storm in both English and (mildly broken, probably robotranslated) Japanese using the handle Yoshitomo Imura. (Hmmm. Wouldn’t a Japanese say he is Imura Yoshitomo?) The bulk of his tweets stake out a principled and absolute position in favor of a borderless, international and unalienable natural right to bear arms.
We need international organizations to apply pressure to the gun control countries beyond the borders to protect the rights of gun
No one patrol consists of a straight-ahead walk with no pauses or stops. Sometimes the stop is momentary, to organize a crossing of a danger area or mount a leaders’ recon. (A well trained unit has these procedures embedded in SOP and there’s no thinking, planning, or orders required, while the patrol is underway). Sometimes the stop is more deliberate — you are nearing an objective, or stopping to rest, or reorganize, or stopping overnight.
If you are stopping deliberately, by US doctrine you are “establishing a patrol base.” This PB can be simple and momentary, or it can endure for some time and evolve into a mission support site, advanced operations base, combat outpost, or forward operations base. (Although doctrine says it’s not a patrol base if you hold it more than 24 hours). But we’ll confine ourselves to the initial establishment of the patrol in the halt as a patrol base.
Selecting the Patrol Base
There’s no way to learn to select a patrol base from a book, or a blog post. You need to think about a position that is at once defensible, but at the same time not so obvious as to beg for recon by fire. It should provide observation and fields of fire back in the direction you came from (in case you’re being tracked), and in the most probable direction of the enemy. It should not be athwart or adjacent to a high-speed avenue of approach.
It should be as concealed from the likely enemy observation means as possible, with enough room in concealment for everybody in the patrol, but they should still be very compact. (Again, how much you tighten up in the patrol base depends on the threat posture. Big danger is enemy recon seeing you? Get small. Big danger is enemy artillery or air? Get some space between your guys).
In short, the patrol base location is any place where your patrol can hide for a bit, without it being obvious or logical to an enemy that someone might be hiding there.
Occupying the Patrol Base
Book doctrine conflicts, at times, with practical doctrine on this. The book says you always secure the patrol base prior to occupying it, for example, by observing it and covering it with fire, and conducting a recon around the area. With small patrols, it may be most practical to secure the base by occupation — in other words, walk right in. Then conduct your perimeter recon.
Pass by the tentative patrol base location and hook back into it. Some call this a fishook or buttonhook maneuver. Why do you do this? If an enemy is following you, you want to drag him past your PB’s fields of observation and fire, mentioned above, which are set up to ambush your own backtrail. When you branch off to go into the patrol base location, at least temporarily place a listening post/observation post at the branch post (you will likely reposition the LP/OP later).
As the point man moves into the base, direction of movement is called 12 o’clock. The patrol leader drops off at 6 and then describes where in the patrol base perimeter each subordinate element (each guy, in a squad patrol; each platoon, in a company patrol) will be positioned. Each crew-served weapon is positioned individually. (Crew-served weapons guard the most probable and fastest routes of enemy approach). The PL walks (or crawls) the perimeter and assigns sectors to crew-serveds and subordinate leaders, who assign sectors to their subordinates in turn. The PL also assigns an initial rally point. Initially, the patrol remains on 100% security and treats the PB as a listening/security halt.
The headquarters of the patrol (in a small patrol base, this may just be one or two men) is positioned at the geometric center of the patrol base, which is usually circular or elliptic (it may resemble a football, in planform).
The perimeter recon ensures that you didn’t put your six-man recon element downhill from a sleeping enemy regiment (laugh if you want, it has really happened!) and ensures there isn’t some threat, obstacle, or high-speed avenue of approach that was just out of sight prior to occupation. The PL needs to be ready to pack up (figuratively; no one unpacks, and the team remains at 100% security, while the recon is out) and move if the recon brings back bad news.
Ensconcing these procedures in a set of SOPs known to all hands has many benefits, including prevented wasted time standing around disseminating orders, increasing the speed of execution, and enabling rehearsed, building-block activities when the men are tired and fearful. (A little fear is a good thing, forward of friendly lines. Not enough to paralyze; just enough to heighten perceptions and put you on edge).
Patrol Base Activities
The most important patrol base activity is security. After an initial period of 100% security, the PL may allow a reduction in security. While this is usually expressed as a percentage, it’s really a fraction. Normally, forward of friendly lines, security levels below 50% must be approached with caution. Very small units in a clandestine patrol base (4-6 men, see below) can go to just one man on watch, once security is assured, because that one man can rouse the others rapidly and silently.
Apart from security, always priority one, the PL assigns priorities of work. The usual priority is:
Mission planning (selected personnel)
Water (the recon teams may have found a source)
Food & sanitation
These priorities are not always addressed in every patrol base. They can also be addressed in depth in standard operating procedures, which minimizes time spent giving, receiving and reading back orders that are already understood.
When anyone is outside the perimeter, whether it’s your initial recon team or Joe Tentpeg seeking a tree to hang from whilst relieving himself, everyone in the perimeter must know who is out and where he is expected to be. Failure on this measure gets friendlies shot.
Sanitizing and Clearing the Patrol Base
When the patrol departs, nothing should be left behind — no equipment, no trash, no disturbance of the vegetation — to indicate that it was ever there.
Before you leave the patrol base, set a new rally point by map recon and confirm it as you move. Leave the patrol base directly, do not return on your backtrail at all. Once you have left the patrol base, never return to it. A well-resourced enemy, having discovered that you used the site, will place human or technical surveillance on the site.
Patrol Base Variations
Very small units on longer missions can set up a clandestine patrol base. In this case, a small element — a recon patrol or a very small special-purpose combat patrol like a sniper team plus security — can establish a clandestine or passive patrol base, in which all the men are tightly together, within touch, and only one remains on watch. The goal is to minimize movement and size and therefore the signature of the bedded-down patrol.
While Army doctrine sometimes teaches a different approach to the last hole-up before a combat patrol hits its objective, we have found that treating this halt, called an Objective Rally Point in Army doctrinal terminology, just like a patrol base simplifies training without compromising security.
For More Information
Here’s a link to one of the many editions of the Ranger Handbook, a generally good source of patrolling doctrine.
Father of the Year contender, here, one Ryan Lawrence of New York. His daughter survived cancer, but the kid didn’t even make it to two years old before he beat her to death with a baseball bat.
Apparently, it’s cruel and unusual not to let this guy live and maybe release him to do it again, but then, he’s in New York, where crime not only pays, it runs the jeezly place.
Twenty-five-year-old Ryan Lawrence pleaded guilty Thursday to first-degree murder in a plea deal with Onondaga County prosecutors.
Lawrence admitted beating to death his 21-month-old daughter Maddox outside Syracuse in February. Authorities say he burned the girl’s body in a fire pit, then tied the remains to a cinder block that he dumped in Onondaga Creek in Syracuse.
The child’s body was found by police divers about 36 hours after an Amber Alert was issued for the missing child.
As a result of his plea deal, Lawrence will be sentenced to 25 years to life. In New York, murder is considered a non-violent offense (!), (See Legal Aid .pdf p.4) and, unless he’s a complete monster in prison, what this means is that he’ll get 1/6 of his minimum sentence off and be out no later than 2036, age 45. He can get an additional six months off for every “significant programmatic achievement” he does inside (same doc, p. 3), such as for every two years of undergraduate or graduate college credit, or working as an “inmate program associate,” whatever that is, for a couple of years.