As a veteran, specifically an Army veteran, I find that my view of survival is different from people who have never served in the armed forces. While my personal journey as a survivalist began before my time in the service; that just meant that my time in the Army became part of my survival education. As such, the two play off each other, with my military training altering my view on survival and my survival mindset affecting how I viewed military service.
In the military there are three categories of people: friendlies, foes and non-combatants. But non-combatants can’t be assumed to be friendly or safe. They may very well be agents provocaturs for the other side, helping the enemy, while remaining under the cover of not being seen as a threat. This was a serious problem during both Gulf Wars, so anyone who is not a friendly has to be looked at as a potential threat.
When it comes to survival, we’re dealing with two enemies at once: whatever nature has thrown at us and all the unprepared people out there. Not all of those people are going to turn into enemies, but the possibility exists that any of them can. That’s something that has to constantly be in the back of your mind.
A preemptive attack is not an option, as part of the military ethos is to protect the innocent and attacking might move them from the neutral column into the enemy column. At the same time, it is foolish to not recognize the danger that those people can become when they are desperate.
Location is Key
Being from the Army, I’m all but compelled to look at any survival situation as one in which I have to be able to defend myself. While I hope to avoid confrontation, I don’t really believe that is possible. Therefore, I see picking the right location as key to survival. I’m not talking about a survival retreat that I would bug out to; I’m talking about my primary residence, where I expect to be when the SHTF.
As far as I’m concerned, being in the city is a big mistake. There are just too many people for comfort.
Each of those people are a potential threat and developing a defensive plan that allows me to protect my family from all of them would require a company of infantry.
Following my military training, I’d set up my home camp in a small town, where there are many fewer threats, unless I can set up my home camp out in the boondocks, where nobody could find me.
Related: Home Security Tips From A Military Expert
If you have to live in the city, then go for a combination of low population density, while being on the high ground. The high ground is always an advantage, defensively speaking and a lower population density means a smaller attack force, should your compound come under attack.
Mobility provides certain advantages in a combat situation; but let’s be honest – who wants to live in the road?
I’ve been there and done that; and while I have to say it was an amazing experience, my wife and I don’t want to become nomads. That leaves us with turning our home into a defensible location and preparing to hunker down there. Generally speaking, defenders have a three-to-one advantage over attackers.
All Resources Inside the Perimeter
As part of my defensive strategy, I go back in history to the Middle Ages. The castles of that time period were amazing defensive weapons, designed and built to withstand long sieges. Historically, the longest of those sieges was the Siege of Candia, in modern day Crete, which lasted for 21 years. How could that be? They had a good defensive network and everything they needed was inside their perimeter.
As preppers, we talk about self-sufficiency all the time; but few of us have attained it yet.
However, if we want to be able to survive in a post-disaster world, we must prepare like we are preparing for a long siege. Everything we need must be within our perimeter.
More than anything, that includes the means to grow food and the ability to harvest water from nature. Having to go outside the perimeter for anything is risky, both to those going out and those staying behind.
Beef Up Your Team
There is strength in numbers, as long as they are the right numbers. I certainly don’t want any untrained members on my team and you shouldn’t want them either. Everyone should have basic survival skills and basic infantry skills, with outstanding marksmanship.
I like the Special Forces model of training, where everyone is cross-trained to do everyone else on the team’s job. While they have a medic, an armorer and a communications guy, everyone knows how to do those tasks. Not only that, but those specialists know how to do everyone else’s job.
There’s no place on a team for a communicator who doesn’t do anything but sit and listen to the radio. If he needs to listen to it, he should do that while doing other necessary tasks to help the team’s survival.
Related: Are you a Community Member or a Lone Wolf Survivalist?
The other thing about the Special Forces team is that they have backups for everything. There’s a senior medic and a junior one; a senior armorer and a junior ones; even a senior communicator and a junior one. Even the leadership consists of a senior and junior.
Each team has a pre-planned breakdown, with each specialty represented in each sub-team, in case they need to temporarily break down into two smaller teams. That’s ideal if a hunting party needs to go out, while keeping the home fires burning. Everyone is a fighter, able to handle their weapons well and help defend the team.
Most of the Army’s time is taken up in training. Soldiers train for the inevitable war, hoping it will never come. But as we’ve seen over the course of the last few decades, wars do come, validating the need to keep on training.
The Roman historian, Josephus, wrote “Their drills are bloodless battles, their battles are bloody drills” speaking about the Roman Army.
The idea is to train so hard, that the only difference between training and the real thing is whether there is blood or not.
By comparison, the training that most preppers put themselves and their families through is more like a classroom familiarity course than real training.
I’m not into making my family go through unnecessary hardship, but at the same time I want them to be prepared. Therefore I take every opportunity I have to make them do things as if they didn’t have all the modern resources of home.
That doesn’t mean I won’t allow them to use the washing machine or force them to wash the dishes with soap made from the wood ashes, but if we have to start a fire we do it as if we were doing a survival campfire. We look to use our survival skills whenever possible.
Related: What’s the Most Important Thing a Senior Brings to a Survival Group?
In addition to that, I plan weekend backpacking outings which are basically a bug out without the urgency. We only take the gear we would use on a bug out and eat the same type of food.
By using our actual bug out bags, we make sure we’re familiar with the equipment and that it all works as it should. Then, when we get home, we restock it with anything we used on the trip.
An Exit Strategy
Regardless of how good a home is as a survival retreat and fortress, there are some things that can’t be survived. I sure wouldn’t want to stay in my home if a nuclear power plant melted down 20 miles away. I wouldn’t even wait for the evacuation order. I’d be trying to beat everyone out of town, at least until I heard the “all clear” from competent authority.
As a commander, part of my work, every time we went on field maneuvers was to develop my exit strategy, along with a rally point, route and secondary location. This was usually the first thing I’d do, as soon as we settled into a location. When I could, I’d start that work while scouting the location we were going to, so as to be able to have the exit strategy in place as quickly as possible. Should my unit come under attack and have to withdraw, I had to be ready.
This is really no different than a bug out plan, although more formalized than most of the bug out plans I’ve seen. The two key ingredients in it were always the rally point and the destination. The route wasn’t as important, as it was assumed that the unit could end up breaking up as we withdrew. If that happened, we would regroup at the rally point and move from there to the secondary location.
In the military we carried everything with us, when on the move. Specialized logistical units existed, which would take care of resupply. That’s something that we don’t have available to us as preppers. Our only option is to set up supply caches, making sure that they are in locations where we can both get to them and where others won’t.
By and large, the preppers I’ve seen don’t prepare enough supply caches or large enough ones. A single five-gallon pail might be a good enough supply cache to get you down the road to the next one; but that’s about it. What I’m talking about is enough food and other critical supplies to last for months.
If any of us are going to have to bug out and abandon our homes, along with our gardens and other means of growing food, we’re going to need a whole lot more supplies than if we had stayed home.
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My question would be….. why i am storing food all over a property to get to some other place…. I am not bugging out and don’t see a point in the death choice of leaving. Granted yeah if we have a “massive thing like a comet hitting the house. We would need to leave but there isn’t going to be a way to move what we need to survive.
Curious what entails you to be a “army vet ” the cold war types who never deployed.or seen somethings.
i do agree with the training aspect of it and sharing tasks…
If a “massive thing like a comet hitting the house” you wouldn’t have to leave, you’d already be gone.
Any person who makes it through boot camp or officer training and served at least 180 days by federal law is a veteran of the service they were in. As a cold war veteran, I got to serve in Granada and 1st Gulf War. There were others who served in Panama, Lebanon, Kosovo, Sebia, Somalia, and more during my time in. So, saying that “Cold War Era” veterans are not worthy of being call vets is not just wrong it is against the law.
I was also a “Cold War” vet. I was commissioned in 1974 at the end of Viet Nam. Some of the training I did in Germany and Korea was as realistic as it could be. When the siren went off at 0400 in the morning at Camp Casey, you never knew if it was actual or a drill. My unit supported Rangers deploying from Fort Lewis for Grenada. I trained soldiers deploying for Desert Storm. I deployed myself at 55 for OIF. Don’t look down on the dedication and service of fellow Cold War Vets. Ever.
Oh, Ron has a new screen name. Or maybe his lover?
How about something USEFUL to the Article oh YELLER Of Opinions?
Or are you limited to spilling your bile all over someone?
Garbage comments like this really do nothing to help folks going to “Ask A Prepper” for advice and help.
At least Raven actually said something useful and discission worthy.
@Raven Prepper. I would encourage you to read some SHTF fictional books. They give you a pretty idea of what could happen. For instance that neighbor knows you’re a prepper and is able to steal your food supply. Food and other necessities stored in multiple locations may save your life. (ya know…don’t put eggs in 1 basket). For widescale and long term scenarios people will panic and loot. Although you may plan to bug in (like me), a comet doesn’t have to come to make you bug out. Reasons for bugging out (water supply, looters, exodus of people from the city, etc.) Perhaps do more reading and research to better understand why these experts provide this advice.
yeah…. i read most of the prepper books thats around…. most of it has a few good ideas but the majority are dumb and focos on filler garbage.
no bugging out is a death sentence so good luck with that one .
Another great article. Military training and expertise can certainly help guide one though the Ultimate SHTF. If you can not build a functional military operation like the one presented here, simply knowing your risks and weaknesses can help you put plans in place that can work for you. Location is key. Resupply is critical. Chose wisely.
there is no resupply ….
Well if you don’t have a food source like garden …. all your food stores are nothing but a ticking time bomb to starvation
“Re-supply” is the 120,000 CALORIES in every person that died trying to kill my family.
Dress them and cook them like a fatty deer.
You all need to get real serious.
Best Wishes and carry On,
oh sorry i found things with your article that i disagree with. I guess i assumed you as a vet… might not be a little snowflake.
Raven please don’t drop down to the poo flingers level. Ron is being Ron.
You brought up 2 good points that badly needed discussion.
A few comments, I’ll try to be positive 🙂
First, it’s a pretty bad idea to lead off with a title “Ultimate SHTF Plan from anybody”
Sets the Bar way too high. That level of information could take several books starting with an overview book and followed by a book about knowing your AO Area of Operation for example.
Yours is at best a glossary of such a series of books. You’ve made several good points, some (MOST) need a paragraph or three EACH to expand. It’s a good start to begin thinking and planning.
I could address each section, but I’ll just go for the worst one.
Bugging out, WITHOUT a pre-planned and prepared place to retreat to makes you a Refugee. Subject to the “Tender Mercies” of whoever you meet. That or MAYBE a Refugee Band of Armed Thugs taking from others. Both are poor life choices.
Retreating to a TRUSTED Ally is the only realistic choice. AND BTW be prepared for THEM to retreat to your place if they were overrun or subject to that nuclear reactor meltdown situation.
Looking forward to older wiser heads to discuss this and expand it a lot.
Prepping for a disaster is a personal choice that you and your team needs to be in agreement on. First in all situations you need an escape route and potential safe location to bug out to, but that location will vary by the type of disaster. Every prepper has their home base where they store their their bulk items and of course have the highest potential to survive there! I will bug out only after every other option is exhausted! My team knows the area, can secure and defend it and have the ability to replenish supplies here. Bugging out takes away almost all of your security and now you have to dodge other groups or hopefully find one that wants you to merge or you try to build a defensible position where you finally either run out of options or are far enough in the wilderness that other groups don’t bug out there! If you are within 50 miles of a major city you will deal with folks that have been forced to scrounge for food, shelter and medicine! Will they attack you to get those things? Most likely because they now believe they are out of options? At this time you either defend your position to the death or join the on the road crowd! As time goes on you hope the stragglers die from the event or from thirst, hunger or injury so your group can have a little solace. Suddenly your new world is very small and that’s the new world of a prepper that survived! Let’s hope we end with family, friends and folks we cherish surrounding us!
It’s the “little” things that will cause problems if not attended to. Like the food planting inside that defensive perimeter. The “gardens” need to be positioned out of sight from outside the perimeter to help insure security of that supply. Attention needs to paid to the perimeter structure. See out Vs see in. Ease of penetration must also be thought of. Has anyone thought about the penetration seurity of a vinyl covered home Vs a brick home. I haven’t seen that addressed anywhere. Maybe the primary vinyl covered home should be a place to be bugged out from. Long screws in door hardware would be useless if the walls can be penetrated with small calber ammo
Brick doesn’t stop small arms fire very well. You stand a better chance with stone or log walls. -just my opinion
Texas Troy no American home is a good defense against 7.62 X 51 military ball. Brick helps don’t get me wrong, but I know that even my soft tip deer hunting ammo can blow through trees larger than used in Log Homes.
Never defend from your home, just takes one sneaky soul while your decoyed by a noisy halfhearted attack over there to burn you out. Most homes have very POOR 360-degree visibility.
Plan on fighting from fighting positions around your home.
the key would be not ot have a fight from your house…… Who the hell wants the place they live shot up…. Take the fight to them or a different location.
Sand bags or trash cans filled with sand or dirt will do just as well as stone or log walls. Plastic trash bags can take the place of formal sand bags. Any kind of container that won’t shatter with an impact and that will enable one to build a protective wall will work satisfactorily.
It doesn’t have to be head high. As long as you can move comfortably below cover that is high enough.
We covered window protection in an earlier discussion. You can get plastic that will make your windows shatter resistant. They can still be penetrated by a bullet but you won’t get sprayed with sharp glass particles.
Clear packing tape can be cross-crossed on the glass to provide a similar protection from flying glass. In my view, plastic on the window gives you the best of both worlds. You can see out an important consideration yet you have protection from forced entry and flying glass. And it is unobtrusive to neighbors before things break down. If you add UV protection film it will actually add value to your house if you move before the end of the world.
right and then its has to be in the sun and near water and near the home…. who the heck wants to walk 3 miles to tend to the garden.
I get a kick out of the common notions about how protective walls, vehicles and other everyday “cover” items actually give. Not much! Unless someone has had opportunity to experiment, experience or observe effects of different calibers,projectiles and charges upon walls and vehicles and other “obscurements”, then many put confidence in these barriers. Not I. In the interest of bugging in, I have given house hardening much thought. Steel plate can be placed inside the exterior walls at the corners and bonded to some nice tile and some kevlar sheeting behind that to catch any spall. Wouldn’t need to be full height, just a good crouch level to keep cost down. Sandbags available and the dirt to fill them would be a huge plus also to bolster the armor and to have a protected semicircle at your back. A couple of hardened corners with interlocking fields of fire and a decent, not outwardly noticeable fortress is born. Have stuff for fire repelling and extinguishing along with masks and other basic hunkering gear and supplies.
Eric while that sounds good Mr. Molotov is still a major threat. One Molotov inside the home and not even the Fire Department RIGHT THERE on the spot can do much.
Look up Flashover Fire for examples.
Fight away from your house. Shovels and Sandbags OUTSIDE friend.
Can cannon makes a excellent product ….. lauches a 12oz can about 100 to 150 meters on one 556 blank.
A little poem to get the day started:
It’s not my job to drive the train, the whistle I cant blow.
It’s not my job to say how far this trains allowed to go.
It’s not my job to let off steam, nor even clang the bell,
but let the damn thing jump the tracks and see who catches hell!
The article, like most articles on this site, is a good basis to start with for your specific needs, and like most articles, fails to encompass ALL scenarios. I don’t live in a big city, so the writer’s suggestion does not apply to me. Does that make it a bad suggestion? NO! Do I need to know whether the writer served as a grunt in Vietnam or a supply clerk in peace time 1980? It would give credence to some of the suggestions, but, him having served in the Army means that he had a different, more robust training than I had in the Navy. He stated he was a commander of his field unit; I am assuming that he may have been an officer, but I may be wrong. As a commander, his team looked to him to make plans and to have them executed properly. If he was a bad planner/leader, his team may have let him “catch hell” in life threatening ways.
Did I learn from this article? Yes! Do I think the writer honestly tried to impart knowledge, suggestions, or ideas for the benefit of others not so highly skilled or trained? YES! I know that my hidden stashes on my own land are for my security in case my main store is destroyed, robbed, or confiscated. They are not for a bug out scenario. I am not planning on bugging out, but I do have a small bug out bag each, for me and my family members, but I do not have caches hidden in various areas in case I do have to bug out. I am in a area that is not prone to volcanoes, flooding, earthquakes, or hopefully nuclear war; so any bug out plan that I have considered has always been dependent on the event that would create that need.
I apologize that I cannot give pearls of wisdom from my past experiences, but I feel it is better to not muddy the water by giving suggestions that will not apply to everyone. My experiences are mine, and I have learned from them. Other commenter experiences are theirs, and unfortunately, some commenters believe that only their experiences should be learned from and applied in your situation.
What makes someone qualified to make suggestions? Life experiences. What makes someone qualified to dictate how I address an experience? NOTHING! If I can learn from someone else’s experience, then that is a wheel I don’t have to create, but if I can’t learn from the experience because it doesn’t apply to me, then I will not trash the lesson.
As far as the poem at the beginning of my post? I have people that look to me to perform specific tasks. Some of those tasks will be dictated by future events, and I am taking every opportunity I can to learn and be prepared. My name Prepper In Training does not mean I am a newbie.. it means that without constant training, I am setting myself up to fail, and FAILURE IS NOT AN OPTION!!
Good post Prepper in training.
Can I suggest that all of us need also to have Spiritual Preparation also in progress?
Sadly Failure IS an Option. Mr Murphy is alive and well, accidents happen and people being people Will Fail you.
Sickness, death, and other problems will come so having a Relationship with your Creator is more than a backup.
I’ve comforted the dying often enough to know the real need for that relationship.
History shows people of faith survive better when things look impossible.
Your last sentence here, Michael, speaks volumes.
We train regularly and then we pray that we trained enough and correctly.
I was thinking about this article last week. More and more I am thinking that cohesive groups have more credence. I think this will happen anyway.. by necessity. But being not prepared as a group is the key. Tough call because needy groups will have divisions?
Skip I am confused by this post.
Please explain your thoughts.
If your group isn’t strong enough to work and train together in “Good Times ” what pray tell will be the glue keeping them from failing when things get “BAD “?
Well said. I am not even going to spill a lot of verbs here. Each post in this thread has value to me. Like Prepper In Training, I am not new at this but I keep an open mind to lessens offered by those whose experience warrants the respect. BTW, thank you, (All Veterans) for you have protected my way of living. And thanks to the rest,(Michael, Rodger, Don, etc) for you have offered like minded ideas and solutions with positive intent. Carry On.
Liked the article as it was thought provoke. Having read most of this type of literature no one really addressed the fact of a lead up to these type of scenarios. What about the slow bleed out of resources before the shtf . Maybe a great reset scenarios.
Whatever oh most POWERFUL ONE (Do I need to ass a sarcasm tag here?)
There are a LOT of Veterans on this site. Most are smart enough not to make it a Big Deal.
Grateful you are not in my MAG.
Bug out articles are a joke. Traveling and highways would be suicide. In a grid down situation the locals will not be taking kindly to outsiders. If you live in a stick built home like I do then even a pistol caliber round will more than likely penetrate the wall and remain lethal besides the fact that it’s combustible and a couple of tracers would burn it down. LARPing around with civilians or family members as if you’re going to turn into the A-team is a joke. I was in the regular army Infantry and knew guys that trained at that level for years and were complete liabilities, completely unreliable under stress. Get a gun that you can shoot accurately, buy ammo until you think you have enough then get more. But most importantly, IMO, don’t sugar coat it. Tell whoever us in your area of operations that there will be NO surrender, NO retreat and that you will fight and you will fight to the death and die in place if necessary. Not die without purpose but die knowing you have undermined the enemy’s ability to attack the next innocent victim. If everyone acted accordingly a month into a SHTF situation there wouldn’t be any bad guys left, at least not out roaming.
Imagine you live on the east side of a Nuclear Power Plant that just sprung a leak. (Born and raised there myself) Prevailing winds with fallout would be my number one reason to bug out. The risk is real for Points East of Perry, Ohio. Here again it’s all about “Risk Assessment” and planning your own likely emergency. Not every emergency will require a “fight to the death”. Many things to plan for, start small. Consider your probable risks and plan accordingly.
I’ll listen to any tips that someone has that I may be able to use in my particular situation! My question is this: How far away from a larger city do you need to be to feel a little safer than “in a city”? We bought our homestead 30 years ago about 20 miles outside of a mid-size metro area. Since then the sprawl has creeped towards us and we’re on the verge of becoming a suburb, with an interstate exit built around 12-15 miles away. For now it’s no longer rural farmland but still “small town” living. (I realize there’s no really safe place in a SHTF scenario) How far of a drive from an urban area (350k) do true preppers start feeling a bit relaxed?
I don’t think you can get away from the refugees if urban areas collapse. Desperate people can walk hundreds of miles with nothing, this has occurred throughout history. Refugees by the thousands have arrived in Europe from the Mid East and Africa as starving dehydrated skeletons. And even in the worst case grid down EMP scenario I know for a fact that, at least in Texas, there will be thousands of old vehicles still running and plenty of hungry people riding around in them. Security in small towns and out in the country is going to mean having good neighbors, good friends, lots of dogs, and lots of guns. Fact is, it’s pretty much that way nowadays with all the meth heads cruising the county roads looking for anything they can steal and sell.
When I moved to this house about half a dozen years ago, much of surrounding land was farmland. I used to have a problem with the high level of dirt that would blow off the fields into my rain gutters and create a bunch of mud. Now, my gutters are mostly mud free because there is less farmland because there are so many houses around and even some townhouses being built close by! Traffic is so noisy now. I am spending a lot less time in my yard. It is getting to be harder and harder to get away from the crowds even now, let alone when things go off the rails.
If I said “Robin Sage” would that mean anything to you?
18th ABC / 1st COSCOM / 4/403rd
It is so ironic how I used to feel that prepping for the Zombie Apocalypse was a ridiculous waste of time. That was until I met my first Meth-Head extremely low on “TWEEEEEK”? That was a real eye-opener. That’s a Zombie folks. Plane and simple. He may have friends who need Heroin, That might be worse,I don’t know but those are Zombies too. Prepare for your reality. Here is a very specific “doomsday scenario” if you need to label it just for MY Reality (Your’s may vary):
1. Living on the East Side of a Nuclear Power Plant
2. North East Ohio where lake effect snow and prolonged frigid temperatures are common
3. Hot Humid Summers with Power outages semi-regular
4. History of Hoarding and panic buying
5. And the occasional Drug Addict(s)
1. Bug out plan with team members South and West of Danger Zones (including Cleveland)
2. Two vehicles for capable transportation with two alternate heat sources and Food and Water Cache on-site and two South and one West each with 72-hour freeze dried stash.
3. On site and mobile Solar Power, Generator back-up and a new wind turbine in the plan (not finished, won’t be mobile)
4. Full Stock 60 days of Food, Water, Fuel, Power, Seeds, with a way to grow my own in my greenhouse.
5. Hand shake and a kind word. Directions to the Food Bank. And my Glock.
These preps my not work for you. That’s the point isn’t it? Consider your risks and plan accordingly. Feedback welcome to make improvements. Carry On.
The pretty little hill country town of Glen Rose is a 100 miles north of me, beautiful river running through the middle of town with large, well cared for parks, quaint little old fashioned downtown, close enough to Dallas to commute to work on the south side, but it’s about the only place in Texas not overwhelmed with growth. Because it’s 20 miles from Comanche Peak Nuclear Project and its 2 nukes putting out a combined 2500 MegaWatts of ‘carbon free’ energy and everywhere you go there are signs posted by the NRC detailing what all the warning siren tones mean and when to shelter and when to haul butt and in what direction if the whole thing starts to sizzle and glow.
I served for 8 years in the Army. During the so called Cold War. No,I never saw combat because they weren’t sending females to Granada. Otherwise, I served mainly in (West) Germany. Unknown to most ,outside the military, we were constant under threat from such groups as the Baader-Meinhof terror group,. It was known that we would come under fire when deploying to FTX’s. Then there soldiers who were shot,an officer kidnapped and killed that never made it to the news. No, I am NOT comparing my experiences to combat, HOWEVER, I gave Uncle Sam a blank check to be cashed in at a place and time of his choosing, for 8 years of my life. Let’s not not divide ourselves, we all served.
Arizona, One of my good friends in the neighborhood was a JAG officer. She has a high level of determination and is always focused on following through, whatever the task at hand. She always has a solid set of goals in mind.
Anyone who has been in the military has had to give up personal freedoms and learn to work within a group in a way that we, who have never been in the military, have a hard time with.
Regularly, I read the commenters on this forum talking about positive aspects of being married. Today, I was pondering what it would be like to be married again and that someone in my age group would most likely be an old cranky codger. Lol. Now, after reading the above range of comments, my questions were answered.
I have to agree, Arizona. I served four years active duty in the Marine Corps. Most of that four years was overseas in the Far East. Got sent to Taiwan to defend the MAAG group there during the 1958 Taiwan Straits crisis. Lot of good one Marine air group and reinforced Marine rifle company would have done against a quarter million Chinese soldiers if they had been able to force the straits and land on the island.
I then served four years in the active Marine Reserve and when my eight year obligation was up I said goodby. I stack my service against anyone with the exception of those who have actually seen the elephant. If you served two years in the green zone as a REMF, big deal. So the slop chute didn’t carry your special micro brewery beer. Oh sob. In my time guys turning 18 faced the draft. Anyone drafted dodnt get a choice. You got stuck where some branch needed you. It might have been Hawaii or Adak, Alaska. I consider my military service a big plus in my life. For one thing, had I not joined the Marines I would not have met and married my darling wife and that might have sent me in a totally different direction without her gentle guiding hand showing me the path.
I found my service highly educational. I grew up while in the service. I like to think that I wasn’t nearly the ignorant jerk when I got out as I was when I went in. Although I always gave what I thought was a 100% effort, I can honestly say that the Marines gave me more in return.
A lot of the posts to this article were full of vulgarity. I am certainly no stranger to rough language. The Marines at that time were not the enlightened politically correct namby-pambies they are trying to make out of warriors today. But since I have matured slightly, I consider vulgar and abusive language a sign of diminished intellect and most assuredly a limited vocabulary. You don’t build yourself up by putting others down. You certainly don’t impress anyone by vulgar or abusive language. One of the bright spots of this list is that there isnt all the abuse that seems to exist on other sites. Nothing wrong with pointing out an error in someone’s post. Nothing wrong with stating an opposing opinion. If we all held the same opinion there would be no need for this list.
A lot of people on this list really like Vienna sausages. I secretly believe they have some kind of taste disability which allows them to eat Vienna Sausage. I cannot decide which I would pick first if my only choices were possum or Vienna Sausage. So reasonable minds can differ but do it respectfully.
I will take SPAM every day of the week.
Spam and Eggs, Spam and Rice, Spam Sandwiches.
When my SPAM runs out, I will dress and cook every fool who tried to hurt my family.
I will not let 120,000 calories go to waste.
Humans are like a fatty deer when you cook em.
Right because you’re well versed in cooking humans…..
Raven let’s do some math for “Der Gunny”.
Claims to be a Vietnam Veteran. 1978
If so given he was 18 years old then, now 2022-1978=44+18=62 years old. Possible. BARE minimum to be a Vietnam Vet.
Keeps repeating the same “Shock Message ” of eating humans several times in this thread.
Don’t remember him-her-it posting anything useful before here on Ask a Prepper.
If he isn’t a Redbull troll then he’s one of the crazies that makes being “the Guest of Honor ” at the BBQ a issue and maybe his spouse runs a Gingerbread House for wayward children. I’d not try her Gingerbread Veal.
Don’t feed the trolls. Nor the crazies.
the fact he 25 years in is pretty odd he only got E7…..
just a typical blow hard using the “vet status as it means something” sorry but i rather see the quiet professionals who don’t brag about it. The stolen valor guy probably has a fake ribbon rack on the tail gate of his prius
gunny, you are full of Sugar Honey and IceTea. You are no more a vietnam vet than I am. I don’t claim to be one. I served from 77 to 95. Vietnam war ended in 75 with the fall of saigon. I will admit to being a REMF in the U.S.Air Force. I was in C.E. so I do have Field Experience.
Never “claimed” to be a Vietnam vet.
Try to READ better.
Not ONE reference to VIETNAM.
The above article mentioned having someone in your group with medical training. Today, I received Claude’s book, “Home Doctor”. It has very clear graphics and photographs explaining medical conditions. The format is such that it would be easy to read in a poor lighting situation plus, if someone is stressed about dealing with a medical condition, the format also makes it easy to navigate through the book.
Interesting Sagebrush Lin. Have you any other medical books to compare it with?
How does it compare to the survival medicine handbook by Joseph Alton MD or Ditch Medicine by Ragnar Benson?
I need to look at it as I am always expanding my medical library.
Have you looked at Claude’s other books?
I value your opinion.
medical is like shooting guns…. reading is nice but doing it would be critical….
90 percent of battle wounds are lethal…… and you’re only saving the 10 percent but w/o advanced medical… its pretty much a moot point.
Raven, you’re speaking to someone that has been doing that stuff for over two decades. In both Civilian Trama Centers and MASH Hospitals.
I am quite aware of the limits of current modern surgical-medical technique. I am ALSO quite aware of my new limits with homemade ditch medicine.
However, I am always seeking more tid bit of information that may give me that tiny extra edge that *might* help me help folks like yourself.
Research on how Mexican street dentists are so successful in treating various gum diseases and near painless and infection free tooth extractions.
A simple toothache can easily become a crippling situation.
And so on.
How about you Raven? What level of medical care are you and your family able to do?
i can do Combat life saver care….. the group has a RN and about 4 EMT certs…. so we can do trama and some ….. limited longer term things….
Fish antibotics have went off the charts in price so that sucks and glad we stocked up on some…
I haven’t looked at the two books you mentioned so I can not compare. The book I just received seems to be more for dealing with illnesses that took a longer time to develop than with trauma, though there is some. I have a printout of a book I found on line about a decade ago, “Practical Plastic Surgery for Nonsurgeons” with 383 pages. This book has good information on dealing with trauma caused by violence as it has very detailed information on how to sew up a wound, plus various approaches of stitching for different kinds of wounds. It was designed for medical missionaries going into 3rd world countries.
Claude’s medical book is great for identifying the cause of certain abnormalities on the human body. The photos are extremely clear. About 7 or 8 years ago, I downloaded a book that Claude had from the late 1800’s. That book was very interesting but I haven’t looked at it since then. Back then, I focused on just what an average homemaker had to know about chemicals and all. I was amazed at what it took to keep a nicer house functioning back then. I didn’t focus on what application the 1800’s book had for me.
Even if a person has the skills already to deal with many of the health issues in Claude’s book, I feel that it is very useful for instructing an assistant to identify and assist in care. The only clear point of disagreement I have with his book is the book’s recommendation to utilize a Hindu religious practice for calming oneself instead of prayer to the God of the Bible. I do feel feel that my money was well spent on Claude’s book.
Part of my thinking is that maybe I will keel over and die at some point but I want my family to have access to usable information so I have collected various medical books. Even if there is internet in the future, there is so much misinformation out there, it is better to have a hard copy of reliable information.
I will look into the two books you mention.
Michael, Many of the comments have been regarding dealing with wound care after being hit with a projectile. Another aspect of health care if is to consider how to care for someone who might need long term care. Claude’s medical book touches on this subject. There might not be a medical facility in the future or even today that would be available for those who need longer term care. A few years ago, I wouldn’t want to have a loved one go into a long term care facility. Of course, today the care is even worse. Consideration needs to be given toward long term reduction of pain, giving comfort and calming the anxious. Everyone needs to understand exactly what pharmaceuticals are, just in case an untrained person comes across a supply. I was handed a package with about half a dozen meds when a person I was caring for became signed up for Hospice. One of the meds had nothing to do with making things better for the sick one but instead to make it easier for me as I took care of her. It basically paralyzed her so that she wouldn’t thrash around during her last moments. The final moments were pretty difficult for me with all the thrashing about but, no way would I give her a paralytic. The bottom line is for all of those who have supplied themselves with medications, research.
I am aware that you, Michael, have had formal medical training plus some others on here have also noted their training. My comments regarding research are for others, not those who already know.
Sagebrush Lin, thanks for the title of that book you printed out.
Practical Plastic Surgery for Non-Surgeons, THIS is why I enjoy commenting here.
I will also seek it out.
Anything we can do to PREVENT sickness and reduce the effects of injury (like avoiding infections, treating infections) will lift us up well beyond Civil War Horrors.
Lack of proper Sanitation is going to be the death of most preppers. Cholera and such are preventable and hard to treat well without ever shrinking supplies of antibiotics.
I wish you were part of my MAG Lin.
Michael, Thank you for such a wonderful complement! I always appreciate your comments and information on this forum.
You are so right about infections being a problem. I worked really hard with drawing pictures and all sorts of explanations trying to explain cross-contamination to those helping me. It seems to be one of the most incomprehensible subjects for some.
I plan to dress and eat every fool that tries to steal my stuff or harm my family.
I have a lot stored, but that is my “re-supply” plan.
The human body has over 120,000 calories just waiting to be cooked.
I am an Army vet too.
This is good advice up to a point and that point is if you have a group of fully trained warriors(which is not likely).
But I have to say this, plans never survive intial contact with an enemy. Withdrawing is not an option when your in contact with an enemy because you will lose more people during the retreat then staying and fighting it out, always has been this way and always will be.
Backup plans has the same problem it does not survive intial contact.
When contact is made then you only have one choice and that is to fight until the fight is over. If the fight is over why retreat?
I am in a peculaur position I have an invalide wife so I would not be able to bug out. So my view on this is different. Fight if you have too but try to be invisible by looking as if you have very little and not drawing attention to yourself.
I have food and ammo put aside. I am a country boy so I know how to survive. I will only fight if I really have too and at that point you best not be an emeny because I was trained in gorrilla war fare. I will play the hit and run. See if I am being attacked then I will hit them and run trying to draw them away from my wife and place then hit them again and again this might work and might not depends on all the cicumstances at that time. So this is not a plan it is just something I will consider at the time.
My only plan is to lay low and fight if I have too.
It would be a poor army that wasn’t practiced in breaking contact and conducting a disciplined fighting withdrawal. One great retreat in history was when Lee, after losing the war at Gettysburg, did such a good job of breaking contact that it cost Gen. Meade his job. Then there was the great fighting withdrawal of WW1 executed by the French and British in the face of being overrun by the German Armies. They fought and marched halfway across their country, then stopped and turned in good order to stop the German forces cold outside of Paris. This retreat, more than anything else, cost Germany the war. And our Marines are justly proud of their fighting withdrawal from Chosin Reservoir in the winter of 1950. The Army suffered heavy casualties in their retreat because they weren’t disciplined in the process of withdrawing by companies, one company is left to hold the enemy while the others retreat to a position they can defend, the last company leaves by platoons, the one retreating covered by the ones fighting until the last platoon pulls out under covering fire from the rest of the Company. Nobody wants to be the last Platoon, but somebody has to be the last Platoon. Sadly, too many regular Army soldiers fled into the hills and were slaughtered by the Chinese. The Marines executed the tactic perfectly and suffered minimal casualties. In their memoirs they speak of trudging endlessly, tracers from Chinese machine guns skipping down the frozen roads. What an experience!
I’m sorry, Judge, but the Marines were’t retreating from the reservoir, they were attacking in another direction. In the words of Chesty Puller, the enemy was in front of them, behind them and on both sides. There was no way the poor Chinese troops could escape. The Marines could shoot in any direction and hit a Chinaman(that’s the cleaned up version).
I had the honor of serving with Marines who made that march. I also served with a gunny who had been with Merrill’s Marauders on Makin Island. I was a callow young man then and didn’t really appreciate their efforts. To my regret I didn’t listen more carefully to their quiet musings about their struggles. One captain was in an artillery battery and described to me how his battery fired across a road with their 105s on maximum deflection. At the time I wasnt impressed. Later upon gaining a little more maturity I marveled at the discipline and dedication to duty on both sides. The Marines using their 105s at bad breath distance to keep the Chinese off the guns and the Chinese for continuing to attack in the face of such murderous fire. If you have ever heard a105 go off and felt the impact from the force of the muzzle blast while standing to the side of the cannon, now imagine standing directly in front of that muzzle blast and being covered with residue of your comrades in arms as their flesh was shredded by both the blast and the shot ripping through the ranks.
Hector Cafferata ran out of ammunition and in his stocking feet — because he had been in his sleeping bag when the attack started, stood for an interminable period swatting grenades back st the attacking Chinese with his entrenching tool, helping break up the attack on his unit with his excellent batting ability in the semidarkness of the battle. I had always pictured Marine Cafferata as a tall, broad shouldered recruiting poster Marine. Upon his death just a couple of years ago I was surprised to read that he was only 5’2” and barely met Marine height standards. He was among the few to receive the Congressional Medal of Honor while living. He died peacefully at an advanced age.
The intense cold affected the Chinese worse than the Marines. While the Chinese had heavy padded clothing, it was cotton and didn’t really block the cold. In addition, their footgear was cotton socks and the Chinese equivalent of Keds sneakers. Many times the Marines were able to recover quickly from an attack because the Chinese stopped to strip boots and other clothing items from dead or wounded Marines and that pause gave the Marines an opportunity to return-group and counter attack. For the folks who scoff at bayonets on rifles, bayonets were frequently in play on both sides. That was where the M-1 had an advantage over the shorter lighter weapon of the Chinese. The M-1 with an 11 inch bayonet is a formidable close quarters combat weapon either slashing, stabbing or as a blunt force weapon.
While it was a true retreat, the British evacuation from Dunkirk at the beginning of WWII was another masterful withdrawal. The civilian population played a significant role in that snatching from disastrous defeat. Just about every Brit who owned any kind of seaworthy boat took part in that evacuation which required considerable fortitude on their part to sail into a desperate combat zone, getting close enough to the beach to pick up stranded allied troops while being bombed and strafed by Stukas.
i am pretty sure the cold fucked everyone up. The typical army never issues anything good to the troops to stay warm. Hell our current EWCE gen 3 is decent but you only get issued one set of it all.
Bad news, Gunny, tits on a bull is constitutionally protected these days.
I see “Gunny” has not expanded his vocabulary very much in the almost twenty years from retirement. Too bad he didn’t use some veterans benefits to improve his vocabulary. Hey, Gunny, Crome somebody who was in the Old Corps, use some of your VA benefits and improve your vocabulary. Barracks room and parade ground level vocabulary doesn’t cut it. Not every adjective and verb — those are words describing parts of the English language— starts with an F.
We try to keep vulgarity off this list as it almost always is contained in some diatribe that adds nothing to the list, the purpose of which is to exchange useful information , although recently it has been drifting off course caused, in my opinion, by an undercurrent of remarks that do not add to the general knowledge even if they are off topic.
haha ya’ all are crazy! if your preppin dont let the govt know only use cash just saying FEMA is your enemy. Seabee Veteran OEF <3
Seabee’s are the coolest guys in the navy. You guys made a conference table that was shapped like a hugh giant cock….. Hats off to you guys.
Wow, cold war vets shouldn’t be called Vets because they never did anything? Did she really post that??!! As a cold war Vet myself, I seem to remember running around the jungles of Nicaragua & South America chasing after and breaking drug cartel export lines to ports, but officially & unofficially we were never there. All at the age of 22yrs old. The girl who posted that statement assumes too much. If she too is a Vet, then she should already know what happens when you assume. Assumption is the mother of all goat-_ucks. Smdh