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July 2014

‘You go for a man hard enough and fast enough, he don't have time to think about how many's with him; he thinks about himself, and how he might get clear of that wrath that's about to set down on him’ -Rooster Cogburn One of the most important concepts and skills that I have acquired from time spent training in combatives (and in my particular case – Krav Maga) and also participating in Force on Force training, is not any particular technique, but the continual reinforcement and practice of an aggressive, explosive and brutal response. In both combatives and in Force on Force, the faster and more aggressive I move from a ‘defensive’ posture to one of ‘aggressor’, the faster I can inflict damage and disorient the bad guys thinking process – he is not looking for a fight, but a victim. In combatives, we continually practice explosive action, be it defending against a choke, a strike or presentation of a weapon - we move from the defender to attacker with brutal aggression. This action, designed to inflict injury, also... Read more →

We have been working for a while now with the M4 PDW Concept. I knew it would be a controversial weapon, but unlike the adoption of a red dot on the pistol, it seems to have gained a strong foothold early on, and from certain sectors I had not considered. Regardless, I find it an extremely useful weapon, and is my main "work gun" these days. The advantages are many, and with a weapon assembled from the best of the best parts available (mil-Spec is where you find yourself at the bottom here), you can have a weapon system well capable of near MOA out to 300 yards. And before anyone claims I am stretching the truth, that is exactly what I can do with my 10.5" White Oak Barreled Upper with a Timney Trigger and Match Ammo. The main attribut e of this platform is that it is light and compact. Broken down it is smaller than many folding stocked SBRs, and fits neatly into a day pack, or small duffle bag. Light and compact is a theme we... Read more →

Two Days With Tony Nester In Flagstaff AZ.

Its Sunday at 1800 HRS. I have a nice glass of Apothic Red as I left foot is in ice (that the one with the plantar fascia tear from last month) . My son is crashed on the couch...he needs a shower...bad. Even the dog didn't want to say hello when we got home Mine shower is done...hence the red and the post. We spent two days in Primitive Living, Knife-Only Survival, Tracking/Stalking, and Countering it all...and all while carrying the kit needed to put a serious hurt on anyone we wanted to (full LBEs, Rucksacks, etc.). Along the line we enjoyed a late night lighting strike, followed by a cold driving monsoon rain to test the construction of our hours old hasty shelter. Yeah...I am smoked. More to follow this week. Read more →

As a followup to the Gunfighting Fundamentals article, I wanted to examine how the fundamentals of marksmanship are applied, or not, along the entire spectrum of combat shooting. Most of the Suarez International tribe will, no doubt, identify with these concepts as they are taught in the Close Range Gunfighting series, as well as fought in the Force on Force classes. For those that are new to the tribe, I hope that this article, as well as the first, gives insight into why we do what we do. Its common knowledge that we can put gunfights into two categories: 1)Proactive and 2) Reactive. The proactive gunfight is one that we know is going to happen and/or that we ourselves initiate. Some examples of proactive gunfights include law enforcement officers or a SWAT team kicking a door going after a dope dealer or the home defender lying in wait to ambush the invader. Suffice it to say, we are the ones initiating the contact. The reactive gunfight, on the other hand, is one that we did not know was going to... Read more →

I first wrote about the “Fighting Shotgun” back in 2005 as an answer to a student’s question on my forum. I always hesitate to make definitive answers because things do evolve and a valid solution to a problem in 2005 is changed with the development of a new technology or product, nearly a decade later in 2014. Think of a man writing about the best methods of transcontinental travel in 1896. His world view will not be valid today because things have changed. And thus it is with the shotgun. First I will limit the discussion to pump action and semi-automatic weapons of modern construction. Yes, I know Bill Jordan used a side-by-side, but all nostalgic feelings aside, unless one is so strapped that he cannot even pay attention, there is no reason to select it over a more modern design. We can look at this weapon from two points of view. One is that of the limited use, behind the bedroom door, weapon that needs little and is probably “good enough” as it came from the factory. The other... Read more →

When the Glock first arrived on the scene, I remember hearing many deride this new “plastic gun” as “not worthy” when compared to its most successful and widely used predecessor the 1911. Many believe that the 1911 is “the” pistol, the standard to which all other pistols must be compared, and to be fair, the 1911 is a great gun with a great reputation and its role in combat experience does back up those claims. As with all things, change is inevitable and just as the 1911 replaced the revolver, so has the "plastic gun", specifically the Glock, replaced the 1911. I own a 1911, it is a very nice gun, it shoots well and I am glad to own it however, when I get dressed in the morning, it is not part of my wardrobe. What I do carry is a Glock 19. I prefer the 19 because of its size, capacity and reliability. Actually I carry two, set up in left and right abdominal holsters, plus a spare magazine and a fixed blade knife. I find this setup... Read more →

In the second part of this series on breaching we will discuss the ever popular “Ballistic” or Shotgun breach, as well as some techniques for breaching windows. If you happen to miss part one please take the time to have a look at it as well. Ballistic breaching This is the technique that everyone is always so keen to learn about, because let’s be honest it’s damn sexy and just plain cool to shoot open a door with a shotgun. But we need to understand that ballistic breaching is not without hazards and thus is a technique where its risk to benefit must be weighed heavily. Let’s start by looking at some of the potential risks and relative benefits of this technique. 1) Over penetration – This is something that depending on the situation is going to potentially have a profound impact. Specifically if there are friendlies or non-combatants on the other side of the door. However this is a risk that by technique and munition selection can be mitigated but not eliminated. 2) Secondary fragmentation – What I’m... Read more →

Home Alone – The Minimalist Approach to Getting in Shape

If you have finally decided to take Gabe’s advice and start working out but are not sure what gym to join or when you’ll find time to hit the gym, let me offer some advice. Forget the gym. At least postpone it until you get in better shape and can maximize the benefit of a membership. There are advantages to a club; however, the travel time cuts into workouts. My hectic schedule and rural location convinced me to go it alone. If you want to give it a try, here is how to start. Schedule a regular time. I find that before dinner works. Lethargy sets in if you wait too late. Strive for intensity. Use a watch and clip through the workouts. Much of what we want in self-defense is explosiveness. Concentrate on that. Set goals and change things up. Nothing will destroy your efforts like boredom or a sense of futility. If you can identify progress and you are enjoying yourself, you will succeed. I will talk about changing workouts up in a future post. Work on lifting... Read more →