GABE SUAREZ ARTICLES Feed

We recall the drill. The kill-house instructor briefed you on the radio call. "Shots fired, homicide in progress in a home, multiple victims down, suspect is a male white - 40 - wearing a red hoodie, white pants and sunglasses. Armed with a handgun" Then he said, "Hurry - back up is thirty minutes out", as he tapped you on the back. Then as you go into the kill-house (oh wait...never mind, they renamed it a few years earlier to "shoot house"...cant be training killers dontchaknow)...then as you move into the "shoot" house you are met with a myriad of no-shoot targets depicting children, nuns, and women with terrified looks positioned as if fleeing the evil man whom you were told was in the process of killing everyone. Then as you clear a corner you see the red hoodie, and the man fitting the description in the purposely dimmed (but not too dim) light, holding his hand outstretched with something metallic in it - as if holding a firearm. He is pointing it at your face and you realize the... Read more →


When Suarez International began the study of the Red Dot Pistol in 2009 I had no idea that it would become such a popular and mainstream idea. And yet today, almost a decade later, we are seeing more pistols with red dots than pistols without them. I predict that it will be a rare thing to see a pistol in a combatant’s holster that does not have a red dot as a sighting system. However what invariably happens is a desire to shortcut the system, and to get the benefits on the cheap. With that we see the proliferation of low quality red dot sights mounted on pistols. And by “low quality” I mean sights whose greatest attribute is that they are cheap. But “cheap” never brings quality. Now I understand very well that not everybody can drop $500 on an optic but an optic on a handgun that will be carried 24-7 in a holster is vastly different than an optic on a rifle that will sit in the safe until the weekend. Weapons meant for fighting (or “self-defense”... Read more →


I hated the pistol. The agency had decided, that for our own good, and because some "upwardly promotable" officer had dropped her Browning Hi Power and it somehow "went off", we would all be using the new generation S&W 5906. When I got my issued weapon, I think I threw up a little. This was NOT a pistol for killing. It was designed to make even the thought of using it difficult. After all...a dead cop was far better for the chief than a dead blood or crip gang member. I drove to Long Beach Uniform after a 12 hour shift to buy my own 5906 and have the legend himself...the patron saint of Smith and Wesson, Steve Deladio work it over for me. The trigger needed to be, in the words of one of my mentors, one officer CD Smith...."hostage rescue accurate". Steve smoothed out the DA so a Colt Python would be jealous of it, and the SA was what you would think just right on a tuned 1911. And Steve managed to "malfunction" the magazine safety disconnect... Read more →


So I received many emails about the last piece. Here is more on the discussion. An NPE pistol MUST be DA, or have a heavy trigger, because an NPE pistol will be carried without a holster. NPE, by the way, stands for NON-PERMISSIVE ENVIRONMENT. I would never carry a striker fired pistol that way for reasons mentioned. Specifically, the deeper the concealment...in pocket...in jock strap...without something protecting that short light trigger, you will in fact at some point, touch the trigger while accessing. And if the "touch" is during a time of duress, you will shoot yourself. It is not a training issue...it is a life and circumstance issue. Do it if you wish, but you will one day remember what I wrote here. Thus a Glock 42, 43, Shield and any SIG based on the 320 trigger - including the P365, is a Social Compromise Pistol and NOT an Non Permissive Environment Pistol. I will clarify the three basic carry categories below. They are based on the environment you will carry in and the legal/social/physical repercussions if discovered. Standard... Read more →


Here is the article mentioning the report - Final Police Report On Las Vegas My Thoughts - Rationality and morality are not the same. All rationality requires is a reason and a motivation. I have fought evil much of my adult life and even the worst had a reason that made sense to them...and even though we would not have considered action like theirs, one could connect the thinking. On motive for the LV shooting...does it matter? I don't think so. I have always avoided boxed in areas that were difficult to enter and leave. And even more so in our Age of War. Will I miss some over paid oversized court jesters throwing a stupid ball? Maybe...but I have no interest in such things...nor in any similar events. A man in a hotel room shooting people is what it is...an opportunity for me to express who I am by kicking in his door and killing him. There really are no other options are there? If you are in the kill zone...well...nothing to do but run, duck and cover and... Read more →


I do have a coffee habit. It has gotten better over the years but I still enjoy a couple of cups in the morning and at least one before my workout in the afternoon. So I stopped at Starbucks. I go there for the coffee because I don't do doughnuts and I could not care less the political leanings of the CEO nor the sexual leaning of the barista that makes my special Espresso. Like I said...I go there for the coffee. And I listen while they are making it. I look around, not only in the event a bad guy chooses that place, but also because it is what predators do...be watchful...listen...hear and see. No...I did not shoot a terrorist but here is an example of reading people and listening and making judgements based on what information is presented. The lady in front of me is talking on the phone. She has a northeastern accent...perhaps NY. I look at her clothing. She is dressed well, but trying a little too hard to look "southwestern". The Cartier on her wrist... Read more →


JULY 25 - SAINT JAMES DAY On the death of King Alfonso, the Moors (That era's ISIS and Al Queda) demanded the reinstation of the Tribute of 100 Virgins (fifty noble and fifty common), which Alfonso had defied. The new king, Ramiro, denied them the tribute and prepared for battle. On the night before the Battle of Clavijo he dreamt of St. James, who told him that God had chosen James as the patron for the Spanish kingdoms. According to the legend, during the battle Saint James appeared as a warrior on his white horse with a white banner to help Christian armies of king Ramiro I of Asturias in battle against the Moors. The Christians marched on the cry of "¡Dios ayuda a Santiago!" (God save St. James!). They soundly defeated the Moors, and James became known as "Matamoros". On July 25th, we celebrate the feast day of Santiago Matamoros. The faithful are admonished to train with weapons and educate themselves on the habits of their adversaries. Read more →


It was July, 1992, right after the Rodney King Race Riots in Los Angeles. My partner Al Acosta and I were assigned to a perimeter surveillance point in Los Angeles on what I recall was a bank robbery take-down. We were both Gang Officers and sported the shaved head, steroided-out looking Gold's Gym physiques and Fu Manchu facial hair. The surveillance was likely going to turn into a gunfight so while attempting to fit into our environs, we were armed to the teeth. Hour after hour we waited with our team, posted in various locations, for the target to arrive. It was hot and staying hydrated meant drinking water. As as many of us know...what is taken in, must go out as well. We were parked in an alley and needing to check my hydration levels, I got out of the Mustang and walked over to a dumpster to check for color of stream. Apparently my cover shirt had ridden over my belt pistol (strong side carry back in the old days) and someone happened to be looking out the... Read more →


Your claim of justified self defense...or defense of others, must fit inside the justification window. Thus your actions must be contemporaneous to the event...to the assault, attack, etc. Contemporaneous means "close to" in terms of timing. So using our framework of decision-making, you can't justify shooting a prospective and potential attacker because you thought, one day, he might seek to harm you. Similarly, you can't justify seeking a subsequent contact with a past aggressor and claim retro-active self defense. This is a point that is so internalized for many of us who've lead a violent lifestyle that we take it for granted, but it bears repeating since so many questions have been raised recently in this theme. The case was a thread on a sexual assault suspect in a bar. At first sight I would question the judgement of going to a loud and boisterous bar where this sort of thing might happen. Having been in a couple of bar fights in my younger years, I'd rather not get into another one. But in truth, this event could happen anywhere,... Read more →


Any gun will hit COM at ten yards...but our goal is retinal shots at that distance. Nuances in grip, how you sights, what portion of the eye you use to see the sights/dot, visual acuity, all contribute in the same way that a rifle zeroed for one man will not be perfectly zeroed for the next man. The iron sights do in fact have to be zeroed if you want something more than point shooting at an auto shop restroom. In class I have seen new pistols with the sights off for anything more than 10 yard COM shooting. Zeroing involves adjusting them for windage and elevation with YOUR MEAT AMMO at a given distance. Most important is windage. That can be done by drifting the rear sight. Elevation is not as crucial, but that can be done by shaving small amounts off the front sight or replacing the front sight. The zero will not be the same with Tula or WWB. I tell guys - zero for killing ammo, but note where your training ammo hits. Zeroing for training... Read more →