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    Long Term Survival After TSHTF
    June 8, 2012, Submitted by: Ken

    Survival preparedness starts with the basics, the things you hear or read about all the time in this niche… stock up on food, water, ‘bullets-beans-and-band-aids’. All of these basic survival provisions (and many others) are indeed essential if planning to stand a reasonable chance of surviving a longer term major disaster. But what about when much of your supplies (particularly food) are running out? After all, your supplies won’t last forever.

    Most people believe that the odds are quite low or insignificant of being thrown into a disaster of great magnitude – large enough such that the results of which would actually and truly become apocalyptic. We have not experienced it in our lifetime, so it is not conceivable. Most are absolutely convinced that it either could never happen, or if it did… that somehow it would be ‘fixed’ quickly enough to suffer little. The fact is, the very fact that most people think this way, is the very thing that could bring it on. We rely totally on our mostly invisible systems of supply-chain and distribution. If these systems break (which would never happen, right?), then the S will HTF.

    It is true that a disaster of sufficient magnitude to bring on a worst-case-scenario, is less likely to occur than otherwise, the odds are not zero. A black swan event could turn our world upside-down in an instant. So having said that, what are some of the issues we would have to face given a worst case scenario where we would somehow need to survive without our existing working infrastructure for a period of time beyond say, 3 months?

    Even well before 3 months, the majority of people will have run out of food. In fact, the majority of the population (since most people live in cities or suburbia surrounding those cities) will run out of food in a few weeks or less. Grocery stores could theoretically be cleaned out in 3 days due to their current ‘just in time’ supply chain. But for the sake of considering the issues of long term survival (after most people’s canned foods, etc. runs out), how will these same people keep themselves alive?


    The primary issues as I see them are Water, Food, Security, Trade.

    By the way, three interesting thought-provoking good reads about this subject are the books, One Second After, Lights Out, and Patriots. They are novels based in reality. It really gets you to think about these issues. I highly recommend them to anyone who is interested in this subject.

    Most of us know that we cannot live without water for very long at all. We take it for granted. It ALWAYS comes out of our faucet. When the day (days, weeks, months) that it doesn’t, this will be the most significant of all shortages and will bring on the most deaths the soonest. Lack of water. The cities of millions upon millions of people will become desperate within days following the last drip of water from their faucets. No water for drinking, cooking, cleaning, flushing the toilets… yes it will be bad. Very bad.

    What will be the long term solution? If you live in the city, you will NOT survive unless you get out and find a safer place with water. If you live in suburbia, UNLESS you have well water (most in suburbia do not) and UNLESS you live next to a clean source of water (stream, river, lake), you will NOT survive long term unless you find a safer place with water. Many parts of America will be okay in this regard as their are plenty of regions with regular rainfall and bodies of water. However there are also many parts where this is not the case (you know who you are).

    How many preppers have 6 months of stored food or more? Probably a lot less than those who may have 3 months or less. What will these people do when the reality of the collapse sets in, that it may go on for a time well beyond your food reserves? Again, those in the cities will already have have been ‘thinned out’ due to lack of water, but for those who have survived elsewhere, what is the plan?

    It will be very difficult for most people to successfully grow, manage, and preserve enough of their own food to survive a very long time. Success will be had in numbers, and teaming up with those who have experience in this area. Contrary to what many people believe, we can survive without meat and livestock – so growing a diversified field of vegetables (and those which are high in protein) can keep you alive. You may not like it, but you will survive. Sources of meat will rapidly be depleted as most big Corp livestock will die due to lack of food and water. What wild animals remain in the forests will be rapidly depleted from hunting. There will be those who know how to raise and manage their own livestock, and this will be the main source for implementing meat into the diet, assuming that these people have adequate security.

    Which brings up security… Once we hit ‘long term’, those without adequate security will NOT make it. Very desperate people will do very desperate things, and you WILL become a victim during very desperate times. UNLESS… you have adequate security. Again, read the books that I mentioned above, and you will understand.

    If we enter the phase of collapse which we may call ‘long term’, people that have survived until then will need to be banded together in sufficient forces to repel others who WILL try to take what you have. When it comes to desperate survival, and when you realize that you could die unless you get what you need, your survival instinct will kick in big time. This is when things get very dangerous. The sad and hard truth is, you will be forced to make serious decisions, the consequences of which will be life or death. It’s not easy to contemplate or not a pleasant thought to consider, but the fact is ‘IF’ we enter ‘long term’, then we WILL be faced with these decisions.

    Security in numbers. To protect a group of families, a neighborhood, etc., you will need enough people to share in the responsibilities of controlling the perimeter of your geographical space. And it should go without saying… you will need weapons and ammo. The methods chosen and the products used are open to infinite debate. But the hard cold fact is that you will need them.

    Once your group is secured with water, food, and security, it’s just like ages gone by… in order to progress from there you will need to trade and barter. The very basics of trading require that you have ‘stuff’ or skills to trade in the first place. The larger the group (community), the more ‘stuff’ and power you will have to get the things you need to begin to bring your lives and comfort level up a notch. It will be community rebuilding – starting over – the great reset.

    Eventually, after the initial die-off, people will have mostly reformed and reshaped their groups and communities, and everyone will sort-of know the new rules. That is, they will have learned how to survive or how to co-operate with others to barter and trade what they need without resorting to desperate violence. The beginning stages of ‘long term’ will be when most of the violence will occur in my opinion because you will have ‘idiots’ who are too dumb to realize that human interaction and co-operation is the only way to rebuild and survive. Once they are mostly ‘gone’, things will settle down.

    That’s basically how I see it regarding if we ever are unfortunate enough to have to truly face an apocalyptic ‘long term’ survival in a collapsed modern world. Volumes could be written on the details (and has been written in many books and blogs), but simply understanding the fundamental ‘what if’ and understanding and having solutions for the basic necessity for water, food, and security before one can even begin to consider trade and barter… is what you need to know.
    Last edited by Clan DireWolf; November 19, 2013, 09:44.
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  • #2
    Re: Long Term Survival After TSHTF

    I have a comfortably three month food supply, if I am using stored food to supplement whatever I can barter/grow/forage, then I figure in two to three months, I will be at the full six month supply for myself (shorter if I am feeding other people which I expect to do to some degree). One scenario plan is if it is sudden and I reach a point of no additional wealth accumulation, evacuate with my supplies to a place that is not readily accessible, but realize, at T-minus 6 months if you have not reached a point of sustainability, then you are another starving refugee. One idea I have though, is the possibility of obtaining a boat which would allow me to either go to places which are not readily accessible by roads, or just stay out on the water.
    Last edited by RT; July 24, 2012, 17:37.
    Life, Liberty and the pursuit of those who threaten them.


    • #3
      Considerations For Long Term Retreat or Homestead Security

      Considerations For Long Term Retreat or Homestead Security
      October 12, 2012 By Rudy Kearney


      Considerations For Long Term Retreat or Homestead SecurityToday’s post is the first of a three part guest post by Max Velocity. Max has an extensive military background, having served in both the British and the U.S. armies and also as a high threat security contractor.

      He has served on six military operational deployments, including to Afghanistan immediately post-9/11, and additionally he spent five years serving as a security contractor in both Iraq and Afghanistan.

      He writes at the blog ‘Max Velocity Tactical‘ … go check out his work!

      We cannot predict now exactly what conditions will look like after a collapse and as such I urge you not to make too many assumptions based on your particular idea of what such a post-SHTF situation will look like.

      The purpose of this article is to give you the general principles and techniques of defending a location, which you can tailor and apply as necessary and appropriate.

      It is best to adopt a mindset of flexibility and gather mental and physical knowledge and ‘tools’ in order to be able to develop your response and put some of these measures in place as you find them necessary and appropriate.

      For the article I will assume a broad post-SHTF situation of societal collapse with a general absence of law and order.

      As a prepper hunkered down at your home, with food stores, the most likely threat will be from looters and marauders. These could take many forms from a simple beggar, through starving neighbors, mobs, tricks and deceptions, to a tactically organized group with weapons and equipment.

      The worst case is some sort of organized paramilitary style force with heavy equipment bent on forced redistribution.

      Therefore, remain flexible and have an emergency rally point and extraction route should you be overmatched. Know when you have no alternative but to bug out. You can make this decision if you have the information before the threat arrives and conduct the bug out in good order.

      Alternatively, you may be forced to make the decision as the attack progresses and have to ‘break contact’ and withdraw under enemy fire; this is one of the most difficult tactical maneuvers.

      Work on your leadership, decision making and decision points so that your response under the pressure of both time and enemy is optimal. Tied in with this is the need for clear rules of engagement and for the use of force appropriate to the threat.

      This short article is mainly concerned with defense of a single location and as such will not go into techniques such as mobile and area defense, which could be useful for a larger community.

      Remember, the best form of defense is to avoid the fight.

      But that may not be possible and you have to always plan and prepare for that fight. You can better avoid the fight by adopting a lower profile at your location, attempting to conceal your supplies and capabilities.

      The opposite of this is to have a high profile and try to use threat of force as a deterrent. But remember that a good rifleman could sit out at long range and simply shoot your defenders in their sentry positions.

      In my opinion, the best approach for a small survivor group is to adopt a lower profile while maintaining the capability to defeat threats as they are encountered. The following are some principles of defense that you should consider and apply to your location and plan:

      All Round Defense, in order to anticipate a threat from any direction.
      Depth, in order to prevent penetration of your defended position.
      Mutually Supporting Sectors of Fire, in order to increase the strength and flexibility of a defense.
      Concealment and Deception, in order to deny the adversary the advantages of understanding.
      Maintenance of a Reserve.
      Offensive Action (where appropriate), in order to seize or regain the initiative.
      Administration, to include:
      Appropriate numbers of trained personnel.
      Appropriate weapons, ammunition and equipment.
      A watch system for early warning.

      Most modern family homes do not lend themselves to defense. The structure is vulnerable to high velocity rounds which will pass through multiple frame, wood and plasterboard walls, and also simple mechanical breaches are possible with tools and even vehicles used as rams. They are also very vulnerable to fire.

      If you try and defend your house from the windows, then you will not be protected by the walls framing those windows and the room can be filled full of high velocity rounds by an attacking group. There is a real danger of being suppressed by superior firepower.

      If you stay back from the windows as you should, then you limit your fields of fire and unless there are enough of you defending then the enemy will be able to take advantage of blind spots to close with and then breach the house.

      You need a basement or other ballistic protected safe room for your noncombatant personnel (kids etc.) to shelter in; otherwise they will not be protected from the violence and from the high velocity rounds ripping through the walls.

      One of the key things for a prepper defense of a location is to have an appropriate number of trained personnel with appropriate firearms, ammunition and equipment.

      You will also have to take measures to harden the building to slow down attempts to breach. You need to consider whether or not you want your property to look derelict; this could be good or bad in the circumstances.

      It would be worthwhile to consider boarding up or shuttering at least the ground floor windows and think about putting up door bars or even board up some of the doors. This will also help with light discipline.

      External boards can make the place look derelict, but looking derelict could also encourage approach by potential squatters. You could put up the boards internally, or something similar, in order to maintain a low profile and slow any breaches. There a lots of pros and cons each way.

      When boarding up doors, ensure that you have at least two independent exits that can be used both for routine tasks but also for egress if you have to escape.

      Boarding up your windows and doors does not make them ballistically hardened. You could have sandbags ready to go, and you will need to consider a big pile of dirt to fill them from. Consider the benefits of simple mass of soil in protecting you from high velocity rounds, and for the construction of fighting positions.

      Sandbags need to be at least two deep to protect against high velocity rounds. If you try stacking enough of these on a modern upper floor, or even a ground level floor with a basement beneath, then the weight of a constructed fighting position may cause a collapse.

      You could stack sandbags externally around designated window fighting positions on the ground floor, but you will need a lot of them.

      Other alternatives would include filling a chest of drawers with soil to create firing positions, or maybe even material such as steel plate that will weigh less but will provide ballistic protection.
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      • #4
        Further Homestead Defense Considerations

        Further Homestead Defense Considerations PART II

        From the principles of defense it is clear that we need to establish a plan which provides early warning, all round defense and mutually supporting sectors of fire.

        We also need to create depth, which is best utilized outside the building rather than with fall back positions inside the house.

        We can create depth using external fighting positions to keep attackers away from the house, which will also aid mutual support. A key thing that will really help defense of a house is to have a second or more positions outside of the main building that can provide fire support, thus these positions support each other by keeping enemy away from the house and each other.

        This position(s) could also be another house or cooperating neighbor if it works out that way. This creates a ‘cross-fire’ so you must enforce fire discipline and allocate sectors of fire to ensure you do not cause ‘friendly fire’.

        Another very important concept is that of ‘stand-off’. This can be created with a combination of fighting positions in depth and cleared fields of fire with obstacles. If you have an obstacle, such as wire, it must be covered by fire to be effective.

        Utilize stand-off distances to keep enemy away from the property, combined with obstacles to slow vehicle and dismounted approach. Examples like wire are good for dismounted personnel and also vehicles if it is correctly laid concertina wire.

        Obstacles such as steel cabling, concrete bollards or planter boxes and felled trees will work well against vehicles. This will also have the effect of reducing the risk of attackers getting close to set the place on fire, which they are likely to try if they can’t get in to get your stuff.

        If we expand this concept we can see how a mutually supporting neighborhood with checkpoints/roadblocks and observation/fighting positions will provide a great advantage.

        Stand-off is also important in terms of engaging the enemy with accurate effective fire at the longest range that is physically and legally possible.

        If you are competent and have the equipment for long range effective suppressive fire, this can have the effect of keeping the enemy at arm’s length and reducing the accuracy and hence effectiveness of their fire, which will prevent them successfully suppressing you and subsequently maneuvering onto your position to breach or burn the property.

        In addition, consider the presence, placement and potential hard protection of any flammable sources on your property and close to your buildings, such as propane tanks and fuel supplies. Ensure they cannot be repeatedly fired upon by the enemy to cause a fire or explosion.

        The ability to generate accurate effective long range defensive fire depends on skill, equipment, positioning of fighting positions, your policy for the use of force and also the way the terrain affects weapons killing areas and ranges. To engage at long range you have to reasonably fear that the enemy presents a threat of lethal force against your defended location.

        However, if you are in a closer urban or wooded environment you may find some of your fields of fire are limited and you will have to plan and position accordingly.

        Administration is a key factor. While you are maintaining your defense you need to look after the welfare of the team, equipment and the site itself.

        Administration is what preppers usually concentrate on. This is your “beans, bullets and band-aids”. This is an area where those that are non-combatants can really pull their weight and make a difference.

        You must maintain a watch system which will be tied in to ‘stand to’ positions and maybe some form of ‘Quick Reaction Force’ or reserve, depending on the resources and numbers available to you. Your watch system can be augmented by other early warning sensors such as dogs and mechanical or electronic systems.

        Day to day you will need to keep the machine running and this will be the biggest challenge as time goes on.

        Remember, Complacency Kills!

        Depending on the extent of your preparations, stores and the resources within your property, this will have a knock-on effect to your ability to remain covert and the requirement to send out foraging patrols.

        People will also start to get cabin fever, particularly kids, and you will need to consider how to entertain them. Consider that while mundane tasks are being completed, there is always someone on watch.

        People that are not on watch need to have weapons and ammunition carrying equipment close or on their person while doing other things.

        Consider carrying long rifles slung as well as handguns everywhere you go on the property, with at least a light bit of web gear with some additional magazines in pouches. Rifles should never be out of your arms reach if there is any kind of threat of attack.

        You should put rifle racks or hooks/nails on walls in key rooms, out of reach of kids, so that rifles can be grabbed quickly if the alarm is sounded.

        Regarding your noncombatants or protected personnel; what you do with them depends on who they are.

        The younger kids will need to be protected in the safest location you have. Others will be useful to do tasks such as re-load magazines, distribute water and act as firefighting crews.

        Note that you need to have fire-extinguishers and buckets of water and /or sand available at hand during a defense to put out any fires.

        The more tasks you give people during a crisis, the more the activity will take their minds off the stress of the situation and the team will be strengthened.

        Ammunition replenishment, water distribution, casualty collection point, first aid, watching the rear and looking after the younger kids are all examples of tasks that can be allocated to make people a useful part of the team when personnel resources are tight.
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        • #5
          Active Defense Concepts for Homesteads

          Active Defense Concepts for Homesteads PART III

          For this kind of defensive situation you will be well served by the ability to detect, observe and accurately engage enemy at the longest range possible by day and night.

          This is easily said, but would take throwing money at it to get all the equipment you need to best do it.

          In terms of firearms, I would recommend tactical type high capacity magazine rifles for the main work, backed up by handguns and pump action 12 gauge shotguns. The shotguns are good for close work and if the enemy gets in to the building, last ditch stuff.

          Long range hunting type rifles are good for observation (scope) and longer distance engagement. You would be best served with good optics for your weapons and also observation devices such as binoculars.

          Think about night vision and even thermal imaging if you can afford it. You will also have to consider that even if you can afford a night vision device, it will only work for whoever has it so how will the rest engage? What type and configuration of these night vision devices, on weapons as sights or not?

          Without night sights you can fire at muzzle flash or use whatever illumination is available, white light or whatever. A good option is to have parachute illumination flares.

          Loose barking dogs on your property are perhaps the best low budget early warning system; however consider that they may give away your position if you are trying to be totally covert.

          Decide on your priorities and strategy and tie that in with what money you have to spend on equipment. You can get expensive systems such as ground sensors, lights and alarms, but these cost money and you have to consider their use in a long term grid down situation.

          I would prefer to spend money on optics and night observation devices which will last without grid power (but will require batteries) and can also be taken with you if you have to move locations. Here are some basic suggestions for equipment to augment such a defense:

          · Appropriate tactical firearms & ammunition
          · Web gear and magazines
          · Ear and eye protection
          · Body armor and helmets, NIJ level IIIa or Level IV
          · Barbed wire, coiled (concertina) and for low wire entanglements
          · Sandbags or other ballistic protection options
          · Night vision devices
          · Binoculars plus optical rifle sights
          · Black out curtain and pre-cut plywood for windows
          · Parachute illumination flares
          · Trip-flares
          · Trauma medical kit incl. CAT tourniquets
          · Range cards
          · Two way radios and/or field telephones

          If you have put a group together for such a defense, they need to be trained on not only tactical shooting and basic small unit tactics and movement, but also briefed and rehearsed on the defensive plan including fighting positions and sectors of fire.

          Consider that depending on your circumstances and the terrain, you may be benefited by running periodic clearance patrols around the property to mitigate against surprise attack, and to do this your team need to be able to patrol and move tactically, as well as respond to any enemy contact.

          You will preferably have a medic with a trauma bag.

          You do not want to ever run out of ammunition, so make sure you have as much as you can reasonably purchase. Like tactics, ammunition quantities are a subjective argument with many solutions.

          I recommend a personal load of six to eight thirty round magazines on the person, with at least as many full magazines for resupply. And once you have used that, you need another resupply!

          In a real life contact you will likely use less ammunition than you may during training and you must concentrate on effective accurate fire rather than simple quantity.

          Train your team to engage positively identified enemy, or suppress known enemy positions. A rapid rate of fire is 30 rounds per minute; a deliberate rate is 10 rounds per minute.

          Practice and rehearse the command and fire control procedures at your location, including the communication of enemy locations and actions.

          Use range cards to tie in sectors for mutual support and to prevent ‘friendly fire’. Run ‘stand to’ drills like a fire drill by day and by night and be able to call out which direction the enemy threat comes from.

          Be aware of diversions and demonstrations intended to distract you from the main direction of attack. Always cover all sectors, even with just one observer looking to the flanks and rear in a manpower crisis.

          Keep unnecessary noise and shouting down, allowing orders and target indications to be passed around the position. Every team member is a sensor and a ‘link man’ to pass on information.

          Having said all that, you are not going to open fire on just anyone coming to your location.

          Any actions that you take should be justifiable as self-defense.

          Do be mindful of tricks and the potential for snipers. However, don’t give up on morality and charity and don’t illegally open fire on anyone that comes near your defended location. You need to agree on rules of engagement for your sentries and you should apply escalation of force protocols to meet a threat with the proportionate and appropriate force necessary to stop that threat.

          Have the ability to warn anyone approaching, whether you have permanent warning signs or something like a bullhorn that you use as part of your escalation procedures through warning to non-lethal then lethal force as you begin to identify them as posing a threat.

          Remember that escalation of force is a continuum and you can bypass the early stages and go directly to lethal force if taken by surprise and faced with a lethal threat that must be stopped.
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          • #6
            OPSEC FAILURE! Keep your mouth shut or...

            FBI and State Police Conduct Massive Manhunt and Raid Against Prepper Who Was Angry Over Obama Reelection

            By Alex Thomas and JG Vibes
            December 4, 2012

            Due to its close proximity to Washington DC, in recent years Maryland has become one of the worst police states in the country.

            Last month, we reported on a botched FBI raid in Maryland, where unarmed teenagers were shot at simply for being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

            Then, just the other day in Baltimore, an activist and blogger had his house surrounded by police over a trumped-up charge that was over 3 years old.

            Now, in a more rural area of Maryland, a man named Terry Porter became the target of a massive manhunt involving FBI and state police after being reported to be a “survivalist” with a “collection of guns” who outlined his anger over the presidential reelection to an undercover officer.

            This situation apparently stemmed from an anonymous tip from someone who reported Terry to the police because he owned guns and invested in a bomb shelter.

            Where this “anonymous” tip actually came from is still a mystery due to the fact that many of the neighbors in the area who were questioned by reporters have expressed support for Terry and have said that they are extremely offended by the tax dollars and police resources that were used to hunt down a nonviolent person.

            It seems from all accounts that Mr. Porter is a nonviolent person who has come under federal suspicion simply for preparing himself and his family for any trouble that may occur in the future.

            Sadly, AFTER the police begun to investigate the man, they found out that he had a 1992 felony drug conviction on his record which enabled them to be able to then attack his house with 150 armed officers.

            This is not some doomsday maniac as the mainstream media would suggest, disasters happen all the time, and more often than not, people are unprepared just as we are seeing in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.

            According to the initial local news report:

            A Sharpsburg area man who was the subject of a massive search by police Thursday afternoon turned himself in to Maryland State Police on Friday and was charged with 14 firearms violations, according to the Washington County State’s Attorney’s Office and Sheriff Douglas W. Mullendore.

            Terry Allen Porter, 46, of 4433 Mills Road, was being held on $75,000 bond Friday night at the Washington County Detention Center, according to a jail spokesperson.

            State police issued a press release after 6 p.m. Friday that said Porter turned himself in at the Hagerstown Barrack at 9:30 a.m., and that he and his attorney met with investigators.

            Police went to Porter’s home Friday and seized a rifle and a shotgun, the release said. That was in addition to two rifles and three shotguns recovered Thursday night, the release said.

            The confirmation that Porter was at the detention center was the first acknowledgment that he was the subject of Thursday’s manhunt.

            Earlier Friday, a day after FBI agents, Maryland State Police, Washington County Sheriff’s Office deputies, two special response units and others descended on an area south of Sharpsburg for a massive manhunt, authorities had little to say about what they were doing, why they were doing it and for whom they were searching.

            After receiving complaints from the anonymous tipper, police sent in an undercover officer posing as a customer for the mans business.

            A Sharpsburg man charged last week with illegal possession of firearms is a “doomsday prepper” who told an undercover Maryland State Police trooper about an underground bunker and surveillance cameras on his property, according to a charging document filed in Washington County District Court.


            A state police corporal went to Porter’s home Nov. 16, posing as a customer for the business Porter runs from his home, the charging document said. Porter got “very irritated” during a discussion of the recent presidential election and “openly admitted to being a prepper,” the document said.

            From all accounts, Porter had been a law-abiding sentence for the last 20 years. An article by a local Maryland blogger confirmed this fact.

            It is true that Porter had a 20-year-old drug conviction on his record (confirmed here by the Hagerstown Herald Mail) but apparently had no subsequent run-ins with the law.

            He is legally not allowed to own a gun so he does have a legal problem, but that doesn’t justify the cost and scope of this massive operation.

            Heather Hamilton, 35, who lives at 18809 Burnside Bridge Road, around the corner from Porter’s house, said Friday that a Maryland State Police trooper went to her home the day before to talk to her about what was going on and mentioned that it was regarding a man she had known since childhood.

            “You had helicopters flying over, SWAT crews down here, excavation equipment was brought in, and armored vehicles,” she said.

            “It was ridiculous for (the man), who would not hurt another person for anything. Unless you would attack him, he’s not going to go after anyone.”

            She said she viewed the operation as “a big waste of taxpayer money.”

            Another neighbor, Doug Bigelow, also outlined his support for Porter. “Surprised at what was going on, Bigelow said he always found his friend to live his life on the “straight and narrow.

            Bigelow said he would feel safe leaving his kids with the man.”

            Basically, a man worried about the tyrannical Obama regime as well as a possible collapse of society was raided by at least 150 agents acting on initial information that the man was a survivalist.

            The fact that 20 years before he had a drug conviction enabled the FBI to carry out a raid they would have never even considered if it wasnt for the fact that they knew that the man was preparing and was distrustful of the government. To say the raid was simply for illegal possession of firearms is to ignore all the facts of this horrific story.

            Terry Porter was doing nothing illegal by preparing and basically made the mistake of being too public with his preparedness and dislike for Obama which apparently is now cause for a FBI investigation which could in turn lead to a raid in what has now become the modern American police state.
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            • #7
              Re: OPSEC FAILURE! Keep your mouth shut or...

              Manhunt in Sharpsburg ends with no sign of man wanted in illegal firearms investigation

              (Actually, he turned himself in.)

              By DAVE McMILLION

              9:31 a.m. EST, November 30, 2012
              SHARPSBURG —

              A massive hunt for a man as part of an investigation for illegal possession of firearms in the Mills Road area south of Sharpsburg ended Thursday night when a Maryland State Police spokesman said there was no sign of the man after police had staked out the man’s home looking for him.

              As of 9:30 a.m. Friday, there was no activity at the man's home in the 4400 block of Mills Road.
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              Police had surrounded the man’s home and other officers were inside the home after they executed a search warrant at the home Thursday afternoon, according to state police spokesman Greg Shipley.

              When troopers entered the one-story home during the roughly seven-hour ordeal, they found several long guns, Shipley said.

              Troopers believed the 46-year-old man was in the home, but the man did not answer the door and did not make himself known to troopers who entered the home, Shipley said.

              Shipley said at the scene that he believed the man might have been in the basement of the house.

              Shipley said he didn’t know if troopers tried to call out for the man while they waited inside during the afternoon.

              At about 7 p.m., Shipley announced there was no sign of the man and that police would be leaving the area within about an hour after taking some guns from the house.

              Shipley said he did not know if troopers finally moved around in the house and were able to determine if the man was not there.

              “We want to work this out and resolve it peacefully,” Shipley said in an interview before investigators decided to leave the house.

              Shipley said an investigation into the case will continue.

              Negotiators were at the scene in an attempt to make contact with the man, state police said. The man is married and has children, but only the man was believed to be in the home when it was searched, state police said.

              Just after noon Thursday, state police investigators from the agency’s firearms enforcement unit in Columbia, Md., executed the search warrant at the house, according to a state police news release. Those officers were assisted by a state police special tactical assault team, the release said.

              Dozens of police eventually responded to the scene and they initially went to a camping area off Burnside Bridge Road just south of Sharpsburg, where they gathered equipment including rifles and handguns and donned special turnout gear. Two special response vehicles were parked in a parking lot at the camping area with dozens of other cruisers, and a Maryland State Police helicopter was in a field next to the parking lot.

              After the house search, police started moving down Burnside Bridge Road to the intersection of Mills Road, which was blocked off during the afternoon.

              At one point, a large excavator was brought to the scene, but Shipley said he did not know what that was for.

              Doug Bigelow, who lives in the area, said the man who lives in the house that was searched was a friend.

              Surprised at what was going on, Bigelow said he always found his friend to live his life on the “straight and narrow.” Bigelow said he would feel safe leaving his kids with the man.

              When asked what he thought of the situation that unfolded Thursday, Bigelow said, “I think it’s pretty ridiculous.”

              Some students were held at Sharpsburg Elementary, Boonsboro Middle and Boonsboro High schools for a short while at the end of the school day because they lived in the Mills Road area, school system spokesman Richard Wright said. The students’ parents or legal guardians were notified and arrangements were made for those students to be picked up or to get a ride home, he said.
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              • #8
                Re: OPSEC FAILURE! Keep your mouth shut or...

                People, there are too many signs that govt, at all levels, is starting to watch for Preppers to open their mouths and say something stupid.

                Don't talk about your preps unless absolutely necessary.

                Even family or life long friends will tell on you.::

                Be careful out there!

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                • #9
                  How to Improve Your Golf Score – and Do a Little Random Killing

                  How to Improve Your Golf Score – and Do a Little Random Killing


                  FAIR USE
                  By Doug Hornig, Senior Editor

                  This year for Christmas I got something that's been on my wish list for a long time: a golfer's GPS-based rangefinder.

                  Now, if you've never played, this will likely be a subject of complete indifference to you at best. You may even be openly hostile to the game and agree with George Carlin that golf-course land would be much more useful as sites for low-cost housing. But if so, just bear with me for a moment.

                  It's still a bit too cold here in Virginia to rush to the links to try out my new Garmin, but just holding this thing in my hand makes me marvel at the astonishing level of technology that's available to us today. This unit stores detailed information about some 15,000 golf courses in the US, including every one I'm likely to play in my lifetime. It has a touch screen that will tell me exactly where I am on the course, show me the best way to the green, note obstacles that I might not be able to see, and provide precise yardage to either the hole or the next spot on the fairway I'm aiming at. All of this in a package that is smaller than a pack of cigarettes. Wow.

                  The global positioning system (GPS) – a product of the military, designed as a navigational aid – was originally proposed in 1973. It was built out through the '80s, but only became fully operational less than 20 years ago, in 1994. Almost immediately, it was made available for civilian applications. At first, GPS receivers were cumbersome and expensive. They were something you'd buy if you had a yacht and didn't want to get lost at sea.

                  But that changed very, very fast. Increasing miniaturization and rapidly falling entry level price points meant a steadily widening market. Now the technology that positions our warships is in our phones, our cars… and our golf bags.

                  Producing this level of information requires a network of at least 24 satellites, each of which orbits the earth twice a day at a height of about 12,000 miles. The satellites transmit signal information to the planetary surface, where GPS receivers take it and use triangulation to calculate the user's exact location. If you're locked onto three satellites, you can see where you are in two dimensions (latitude and longitude); if you're locked onto four, you can add the third dimension (altitude). Once the user's position has been determined, the GPS unit can calculate other information, such as speed, bearing, track, trip distance, distance to destination, sunrise and sunset time, and more.

                  This is truly amazing stuff. Nevertheless I'm sure that after a few rounds of eighteen holes, I'll start taking my new toy for granted. But in the cold of early January, with the next golf round about two months away, I have a couple of other thoughts. Truisms, I would say. One is that technological advancement cannot be restrained; any given genie, once out of the bottle, can't be returned to its former prison. And the other is that tech is utterly amoral.

                  In this instance, the former axiom means that GPS will continue to proliferate, both in number and in types of applications (provided only that we are willing and economically able to replace the relevant satellites – something that must be done about every ten years). In general, this is a good thing. Devices that enable us to go about our business in an easier, more efficient, and sometimes safer way are always welcome.

                  Now, the government could always decide to try shutting down service to "unauthorized" persons, or begin levying some sort of tax on those who use it. But most likely, we're in the unlimited-access GPS age to stay.

                  It's the amorality issue here that is more problematic. Because, as with much new technology, there is a dark side. Specifically, GPS is the key ingredient that makes unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) viable.

                  UAVs, or "drones" as they're popularly known, have transformed the way in which we fight our wars. Using GPS, they can home in on a target to within a few meters, then send back a video feed and await final instructions from a controller who may be thousands of miles away. Drones have been hailed as lifesavers for US military personnel, since the machines take them out of harm's way. (How that dehumanizes those who wage real war as if it were a video game, or who order long-range kills, is an interesting subject, but one for another day.)

                  They are also touted for their accuracy. Drones' sophisticated electronics allow for precision targeting and, in theory, this should help minimize accidental "collateral damage," which is the euphemism we hide behind when innocent bystanders – men, women, and children – are killed by our bombs and missiles. This may be true, in a general sense. But drone attacks are only as good as the people programming them. Plenty of mistakes have been made, and we likely hear about only a small percentage of them.

                  As we draw down in Afghanistan, drone strikes gone wrong will diminish. But the use of them in the assassination of terrorism suspects in other countries, as is being done now, will continue. Furthermore, they are coming home.

                  This is illustrative of another principle: technology that has been developed for military purposes will eventually be adapted for use elsewhere. You didn't really expect the manufacturers of fighter drones to quietly shutter their businesses after we "win" the Afghan war, did you?

                  Of course not. Thus, in February of last year, President Obama signed the FAA Reauthorization Act, which includes a provision that the Federal Aviation Administration create a comprehensive program for the integration of drone technology into the national air space by 2015. The agency predicts that there will be upwards of 30,000 drones flying the friendly skies of the US by 2020.
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                  • #10
                    Re: How to Improve Your Golf Score – and Do a Little Random Killing

                    Fact is, domestic drone usage even predates the 2012 Act. Without any explicit legislative authorization, the FAA issued 313 certificates for drone operation over the previous year. The agency is mum on which organizations received the certificates and to what purposes they may have been put. However, we do know that the FAA has already approved drones for use by the Department of Homeland Security and US Customs and Border Patrol, as well as in some state and local law enforcement operations.

                    Want to be on TV all the time? You may just get your wish.

                    Many civil libertarians have been raising the roof about domestic surveillance drones (and, really, it's only a matter of time before they become armed), so there's no need to go into any further detail here. If you want to join the fight against them, a modest Internet search will yield plenty of opportunities to do so. But what I would like to do is expose another, sinister side to this technology that has received virtually no media attention as yet. And it dawned on me because of… a burrito.

                    A few weeks ago, a friend forwarded me a whimsical video about some guys who decided to build a drone to serve as a Méxican food delivery system.

                    Though these folks clearly have too much free time on their hands, it's cute enough. I enjoyed it.

                    But it wasn't long before I was hit over the head by the deeper meaning: the age of personal drones is dawning. Think about that.

                    For example, right now you can go online and buy a Zephyr – proclaimed to have a "stealthy" electric propulsion system, 60-minute flight time, and 30-mile control range – for $9,500, a surprisingly small sum. Or if you'd rather acquire your UAV more anonymously, you can go DIY. Along with their video, the burrito bomber's creators helpfully supply links that will guide you through the construction of one of your very own, from readily available parts.

                    Flight restrictions? None to speak of at low altitudes. And even if they existed, they would be quite difficult to enforce if we reach a point where there are thousands upon thousands of these things in the skies.

                    You can see where I'm going with this. Not to mince words: what if someone of more malicious intent than the burrito brothers decided to deliver not a tasty food, but a bomb? To some place he happened not to like, such as City Hall, the police station, or the IRS office. Or to a romantic rival across town. Or to a target chosen completely at random.

                    Suddenly the video wasn't so humorous anymore. Maybe I am among the more paranoid, but to me it seems that kind of sick usage of DIY drones is inevitable, given the number of people out there with an ax to grind.

                    As a weapon, UAVs are inching ever closer to perfect: easy and increasingly cheap to build; hard to detect; difficult to intercept; tough to trace, thanks to off-the-shelf parts; and the malefactor can be far from the scene of the crime. No line of sight needed with a small camera. No need to look victims in the eye or figure out escape routes. Someone could wreak an awful lot of havoc before getting caught, just with today's technology.

                    But consider also the implications as drones get smaller, quieter, and harder to spot, even as their electronics get ever more sophisticated. Go to the Toys & Games department on, and you may be surprised to find that you can buy a $300 quadricopter drone that'll give you 15-20 minutes of flight time, can be controlled by your iPhone, and offers "extreme precision control and automatic stabilization." Its range is severely limited at the moment, but you can rest assured that's a limitation that will soon be overcome.

                    In the military, it likely already has been. Sparrow-sized and even bumblebee-sized drones – tiny, deadly killing machines – are on the drawing board, if not yet realized. This MicroSTAR prototype from the folks at Lockheed certainly gets us a few steps closer:

                    The proliferation of microscale UAVs turns this twist on the bomber jet into something more akin to a "smart bullet."

                    The implications? Try this scenario on for size: You're a disgruntled citizen, hating the "powers that be" for ruining your life. You have no coherent political agenda, just a desire to – in one brief moment of glory – strike back at your perceived tormentors. Maybe like 52-year-old Marvin Heemeyer, who converted his bulldozer into a homebrew tank with some metal and a blowtorch. You focus on the newly elected president. Doesn't matter what party he represents. He's the enemy. So you set your sights on something like inauguration day, where you know his exact coordinates in time and space, and that he'll be standing absolutely still as he delivers his big speech. You beg, borrow, or steal enough money to construct a DIY drone the size of a small bird, and set up a wireless video guidance system for those crucial final yards. You extract a lethal dose of ricin from some castor beans, the recipe for which you got off the 'Net after a little inspiration from Breaking Bad reruns, load a trigger-on-contact syringe from the local CVS diabetes-supply aisle, and duct tape it to your drone with the needle leading the way. At the appointed hour, you launch the bird from a backyard in Maryland or Virginia. You toast it on its way with a can of beer, then sit back in your chair, facing the computer screen, joystick in hand and a big smile on your face…

                    Of course, with the advent of the modern remote-controlled UAV in the skies, advanced militaries have been quick to develop jamming technologies to combat them as well. It's one of the reasons military strategists love drones for Iraq and Afghanistan, but doubt that they would be effective against an adversary like China or Russia. One must imagine that the Secret Service's paranoid think tank of professional defenders has already thought of this scenario and is already carrying around a more portable version of just such a jammer, or at least working on one.

                    But of course, that's where the really scary part comes in, with the advent of the autonomous drone – preprogrammed to do its dirty work, with no connection back to its launcher left to jam.

                    Perhaps we will see the coming drone air corps put only to wonderfully inventive and socially beneficial uses, like remotely delivered Méxican deliciousness. But – if history has anything to say about it –that's probably not the way to bet.

                    Technology is unstoppable, and it is amoral.

                    Now, when I see that innocuous burrito falling from the sky, it creeps me out.
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                    • #11
                      Retreat Security, OPSEC

                      Retreat Security Myths,
                      by Grandy

                      The following are some of my thoughts about our planning when it comes to preparing retreat defenses. Some will work, others maybe not as well, but I intended it to be motivation for SurvivalBlog readers to start thinking about these issues. This is written mainly from a TEOTWAWKI standpoint and not your typical short term SHTF event. But some of these concepts apply to both situations.

                      #1: The Location Myth

                      More often than not, our retreats are in a somewhat secluded location. Rural areas are typically the norm and the further away from built up urban areas the better. But in a TEOTWAWKI situation, the lines between the two will become blurred as people will escape from urban areas and seek out refuge in rural areas. Sometimes it will take a couple of days; others will take weeks and maybe even months. But as supplies start to dwindle in urban areas, you can guarantee people will start looking towards the countryside for additional supplies and places to live. And suddenly your secluded remote area becomes less likely to stay hidden and on the radar so to speak.

                      Unless one is staying on a deserted island where there is little chance of unwanted visitors, then everyone’s retreat is at risk of being discovered. And in that discovery means interest will be placed. Some may be good, some may be bad, but rest assured, your location will become an area of interest before long no matter where it happens to be. Some less than others, but your secret will never be entirely safe.

                      So the myth is about the idea that a retreat is completely secluded and will not be found. Everything will be found in due time and explored. As stated before, some will take interest in the location, others will ignore it. OPSEC plays a key in this (and in item #5) about how well your location might be hidden away, but it will never be entirely concealed. And in knowing this, you can plan around the limitations.

                      Knowing the limitations of location can be a powerful factor in deciding to buy land for a retreat or actually building the structure itself. Things to look for:

                      How far away from the nearest major city or town is this area?

                      Are there sufficient avenues of escape as well as avenues of approach?

                      Is the area likely to be developed in the next 5 years? 10 years? 20 years?

                      Do you have neighbors and how close are they?

                      Is this in a known location (i.e. bordering a park, right off a major roadway, within sight of a lake/river shore) and easy to find?

                      How far off the main lines of “drift” is the location? (Drift is defined as the natural path one would take from point A to point B. Knowing this, will people inadvertently stumble onto your property because you sit in a valley between two mountains?)

                      And also, how often is your retreat checked before you bug out? Is it in an area where theft can and will occur for valuable (or invaluable as people will steal anything) items and long term food storage? Just because your retreat is away from most populated areas doesn’t mean it cannot be discovered and used without your knowledge. And also squatters might very well be occupying your retreat before you get there. How would you deal with that?

                      I’ve asked some questions, but the overall point is the fact no location (save our imaginary island in the middle of the ocean) is completely out of the way and can be discovered despite our best efforts. So the myth of a particular location being safer than others is not necessarily true.

                      #2: The Manpower Assumption

                      “I have XX amount of bodies in which to plan my defenses.” Okay, good idea in theory, but is that taking into account what you actually have right then and there? For example, you know for a fact you have five families coming to your retreat (let’s just say for argument’s sake it’s a really nice retreat that can sustain all those folks) in the event of TEOTWAWKI. Now are you certain all five families are going to make it? So let’s assume they do for a moment and you plan your defenses. Are you taking into account the sick, lame and injured? The “I have a migraine and cannot perform today” instances? The injuries that can and will happen? Can your defensive plans handle the loss of one or two? Or maybe half in the event of a cold/flu outbreak that affects most of the group?

                      Now let’s assume only three out of the five families made it and add to your manpower. Are your plans in depth enough to account for the sudden loss of X amount of bodies? Let’s face it, things can and will happen during a TEOTWAWKI situation that prohibits groups from arriving as they should. And knowing this, one should take into account the decrease in manpower that will come. And in preparedness, proper planning is king.

                      How do you attack these problems? By basing your estimates on knowing who actually will show up. Start at one family and move up to your maximum number. Your defenses should take into account a ten percent rule (ten percent of the manpower will be unavailable for duty due to sick/lame/injured) and still be able to function. In this percentage, round up to the next ten for your real number. (i.e. Sixteen people capable of performing defensive duties and five are out. That’s 31%, so round up to 40%. It’s not an exact science, but should work okay in your situation.)

                      Plan on removing a selected number of people from the equation and plan your defenses that way instead of going on the assumption everyone will be available for duty as needed. Plus shift work as you will have to post sentries at night. Do your plans take this into account? Nighttime is the enemy and the friend. It is a friend since a lot of folks will not be using higher technology to plan attacks and gives you a time for rest. But it is an enemy as it does provide concealment for attackers and confusion on the part of the defenders. If you are looking at a somewhat well trained adversary (let’s assume they are military trained) and has access to night vision or thermal technology, you are already on the bad side of the equation.

                      So before you make plans for the maximum number of bodies available for duty, make plans to remove a selected portion of that number just in case. As life happens, so will accidents and bodies not show up like they are supposed to.
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                      • #12
                        Re: Retreat Security, OPSEC

                        #3: The Good Neighbor Myth

                        “I can depend on my neighbors for help. They are good people.”

                        One had to be careful when approaching neighbors in a post-TEOTWAWKI situation as they may have become very wary in those times and may have a shoot first identify later mentality. Also, those planning on making contact with neighbors and forming a militia in the aftermath of a TEOTWAWKI situation can be in for a surprise as well. Some folks just won’t go along with the program no matter how well you sell it. They just don’t want to get involved no matter what. So in forming a defensive plan for your retreat and even the local area, several factors need to be taken into consideration.

                        Don’t plan on outside help. You cannot make defensive arrangements based on the fact X number of families live in the local area and will go along with what you planned for. Sure some will come along, but others will pretty much ignore you and tell you where to get off. We live in a world of opinionated people and some just feel they will be safer on their own rather than in a group. Some neighbors cannot be trusted either. They could have a farm out in the country because they like horses and are your typical sheeple that come around with their hand out. There are several types one should be wary of and it’s best to get to know them beforehand.

                        Be careful who you bargain/trade with. Even bargaining only goes so far in a post TEOTWAWKI situation. So you are a good neighbor and recognize the fact Family X doesn’t have sufficient arms or ammunition to defend their property. And in knowing more numbers are better than less, you decide to help out. So you give family X a number of Mosin-Nagant rifles and X amount of ammunition in exchange for being your "sentries" on the outer perimeter. However, when someone comes along and offers them the same deal but with better weapons along with partitioning your land, assets and food storage, which one is harder to choose between? Loyalty among neighbors only goes as far as the next meal. Sure you provide neighbors with enough food for a week. They know it’s coming from somewhere and you have it. They want it and what you think are loyal friends suddenly become your adversaries because someone offered them a better deal.

                        Some will become friends for life, but human nature means some will be jealous of what you have. They envy you because you were prepared and they weren't. They despise you because you have what they don't. They see you in a position of regent because you require certain actions in exchange for whatever your barter is. And suddenly it gets lonely at the top. Just because you are generous enough to give them items to survive doesn't mean they won't turn on you at the drop of a hat. Human nature cannot be changed or predicted.

                        Be wary of making retreat plans with neighbors in mind until it is absolutely certain they will be the best choice to depend on.

                        #4: Critical Thinking in Defense

                        “I don’t need to defend this or that area” or “I have to defend everything” train of thought. Based on manpower (or the lack thereof) one must consider what is critical and needs defending and what can be sacrificed before mounting a counterattack or successful defense. In looking over your defenses, think like the opposition. What areas are critical for my continued survival and have to be defended? What areas are not so critical and need to be defended as manpower dictates? What areas are not important enough and I should plan on covering them as a last resort without stretching my manpower out too thin?

                        The military calls it the CARVER Matrix. They use it to determine what areas are vulnerable and which ones can be lost without losing mission effectiveness. The acronym stands for Criticality, Accessibility, Recuperability, Vulnerability, Effect and Recognizability. It uses a numbering system that will aid in the highest level of survival to the lowest. So let’s look at a makeshift CARVER Matrix and apply is against a long term survival retreat. I’ll use a water well as an example.

                        Criticality: Highly critical as survival is dependent on a consistent water source

                        Accessibility: The wellhead itself is somewhat easily accessed depending on type

                        Recuperability: The well cannot be replaced easily if it is destroyed

                        Vulnerability: Highly vulnerable as errant gunfire can damage components

                        Effect: High impact on mission accomplishment as one cannot go long without water

                        Recognizability: Not as recognizable as other structures

                        And in using the CARVER Matrix to determine defensive priorities, we can include the water well and nine other items. These are just ten randomly selected items I grabbed off the top of my head and are not an inclusive list.

                        And, in sorting the data, we have arranged the defensive priority from highest to the lowest.

                        Going highest to lowest in terms of survival, the highest number is defended first and the lowest is last. So our well would be first priority and the avenues of approach the last. Again, this is something I threw together and is by no means gospel. But one can see the idea behind the CARVER Matrix and how important it can be in planning defenses of a retreat. These numbers will change as location changes at your retreat as water is far more valuable in the Southwest than say the Southeast. Only you can determine what can be lived with or lived without, but at the same time, look at it from the opposition standpoint. Normally hungry people will ignore a well and go straight for the food. Or ignore the generator and go for your weapons. Is electrical power highly critical to your survival or are you off the grid enough to survive without it? And will that generator run without fuel? So what is more important? The generator or the fuel that runs it?

                        The spreadsheet I put together is assuming the water and ammo supplies will be inside your housing structure which would be defended. And this is why they are lower on the matrix than the crops in the fields. Fields are highly accessible which makes them a larger priority. Lots of folks plan on defending avenues of approach, but forget about the house behind them. Maintaining a watch on avenues of approach is one thing. Providing defensive forces to cover an avenue of approach is different.

                        I would say use the CARVER Matrix as a guide when determining your defenses. It’s generic enough for anyone to use, but specific enough for individual needs. But you have to determine what you can and cannot live without before applying it to a retreat setting.

                        #5: The Hiding in Plain Sight Myth

                        Which more or less goes with the location myth but in reality is its own portion. However, some plan on being low key enough to avoid detection. But this is a myth as signs of civilization are always apparent to those who look close enough. Take your bug out cabin in the mountains for example. You have your cabin and enough land to grow enough crops to live comfortably, water from a well, game animals in the local area that can be harvested, etc.

                        Nice location, but you want to keep is a secret. So you go to great extents to conceal the fact it’s being “lived in.” But there are always telltales of occupation. Take this for example…

                        You move into your cabin and the first thing you do is clean the cobwebs from the windows so you can see better. Maybe sweep the porch, grab that plastic bag that blew in from Lord only knows where and put it in your garbage or bury it, update your woodpile and replace the old tarp on top.

                        Other than that, you practice good light and litter discipline, good OPSEC and rarely venture outside unless you have to. But what signs have you left?

                        Clean windows are a sign of occupation as is a swept porch. Minor debris and whatnot in a yard is to be expected in an unoccupied location. The hole you dug up will leave signs for a couple of weeks until the soil settles back down and the minor remains are washed away. Your newly cut woodpile will leave sawdust and the wood is a different color as it hasn’t been weathered. Plus there is a distinctive smell of freshly cut wood that lingers. The tarp is new and not frayed as an unoccupied location might be. You are also creating a path in the grass and nearby forest pointing to signs of recent activity.

                        The point is, no matter what we do to try and hide in plain sight, there is nothing we ever do that cannot hide the fact our retreat is occupied. You can limit the amount of activity, but there is nothing that can be done to “hide in plain sight.”
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                        • #13
                          Re: Retreat Security, OPSEC

                          #6: The Technological and Armament Superiority Myth

                          “I have this doodad that is the best on the market and will always work!” or “My gun is better than your gun because it’s superior!”

                          Glock lovers unite as this will be the only weapon still firing at D+15 post TEOTWAWKI! Or so the myth goes and the owners will claim. “Yeah, my pistol will last forever because it’s a Glock!” or insert firearm of choice here.

                          Whether it’s a 1911, Glock, Springfield M1A, AKM, tacticool M4gery, Remington 870…weapon type doesn’t matter. Far too often the reasoning is given for buying said firearm(s) because of the longevity of the design and the parts not breaking. Now I will give Gaston Glock his due when he created a seriously durable pistol, but it is not the “end all be all” of the pistol world as some will claim. Same goes for 1911s, Berettas, SIG-Sauers, CZ, Hi-Points or any other pistols that have been or are manufactured today. Some will last longer than others, but let’s face it; nobody has ever made an unbreakable firearm. How does this translate into a retreat environment? Simple, technology and high speed doodads are not going to keep you alive. They will enhance your efforts to survive, but alone they cannot keep you from getting killed by the ranging hordes.

                          And in turn, it doesn’t matter about the superiority of your pistol/rifle/shotgun design if you fail to defend your retreat properly and/or do not place the emphasis in the right areas. You can have 100,000 rounds of Black Hills match ammo for your Springfield M25 White Feather and it does you little good when your retreat is overrun. The armament superiority myth comes in full force when the discussion of AK vs. AR-15 vs. M1A vs. FAL vs. SKS vs. HK91 vs. Mini-14 comes out. “My gun is better than your gun, my gun’s better than yours!” (And I bet none of you can read that without having the Ken-L-Ration dog food jingle stuck in your head for at least 10 minutes.)

                          But anyway, people have a comfortable feeling because they have placed their faith in the ability of their firearms. The death dealing, super rifle concept still has limitations and we often get wrapped up in the debate of how great it is to ignore the limitations of the system itself. And ignoring those simple rules of the limitations of the system itself can be disastrous when we need it the most. Overall, firearms are a mechanical device which falls under the following principles:

                          * It can break
                          * It will break
                          * Fixing it will not be easy
                          * These things will happen when Murphy decides it’s best and this is typically when you need it the most

                          Not to say firearms are not a vital tool in the defense of a retreat, but the lesson to be learned is “don’t get complacent with your system and ignore the limitations of same.” A good case in point is the military continuing to put iron sights on rifles and not relying completely on scopes. The scopes these days are pretty reliable, but they can (and will) break, fixing them isn’t easy and too often it happens in the middle of a gunfight. A whiz bang, super duper precision rifle capable of MOA accuracy at a thousand meters suddenly becomes pretty limited when that high dollar scope breaks and you didn’t buy iron sights. All firearms have limitations in some form or other.

                          The same can be said of any technology we use, no matter how primitive it might be. Now I’m not one of those that thinks we should be back to basics on everything, but we often rely on technology to make our retreats run. And in that reliance, we have no backups to the critical systems. Or we lack the knowledge to repair the systems and/or they are too complex to be repaired easily. We end up placing too much faith in technology and not enough in our brainpower and understanding of the systems needed to survive. Sure enough, we may know how to fix things, but can we do without them and go back to basics at our retreat? Do we have the capability to get water when our well breaks? Is our retreat packed away with the spare parts needed to repair our technology if and when it breaks? Do we have secondary and alternate systems in place if and when our items break? Do I need to preposition critical repair items and risk their theft or do I bring them in when I bug out?

                          In a retreat setting and in a defensive situation, be wary to not be too reliant on technology to survive. When planning defenses and security, take technology out of the equation and see how your plans may change. Technology should enhance your defenses, not replace them.

                          Overall, I’ve thrown out some questions everyone should be asking themselves when it comes to retreats and retreat security. Having a well stocked and fortified retreat is the warm safety blanket of most preparedness minded individuals. It’s a bedrock principle of the survivalist movement and something we all hope to have one day. But just like our technology and our weapons, a retreat is not without limitations. But in asking yourself some of the questions I’ve posed here today, you can help limit the problems that might arise.
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                          • #14
                            Re: Retreat Security, OPSEC

                            Where Would You Draw the Line?

                            Sunday, 19 August 2012 01:47
                            FAIR USE

                            If you are an active Prepper, then you likely spend several hours a week, if not each day, preparing for some possible event that may take place. We are often mocked, ridiculed, and viewed as an outcast of the modern day, grid tied – society. Our friends, co-workers, and family members that are not prepared, are usually the culprits and are what I like to refer as Zombies. They are so tied into the Matrix, that they do not see the signs around them. If you communicate with your friends and family about preparedness, eventually you will hear comments like, “I will just come to your house if something happens.” So if something happens, where would you draw the line?

                            Prepping is a lifestyle, and we spend a significant amount of time and money to ensure our family will be protected post disaster / collapse. We carefully budget for our family’s necessities, and we balance our inventory to make sure we have the appropriate amount of supplies for each member. We give up unnecessary things that we could have spent money on, because they do not serve a survival purpose. All the while, the zombies are enjoying their life.

                            Personally, I have prepared more supplies than my immediate family requires, and could likely take on an additional zombie. Or, I could heavily ration my supplies, and take on a few more. If we continue this pattern, eventually a one year’s supply of food, will equate to only a few months.

                            I have several close friends and co-workers that have stated that they would flee to my house during a disaster. Sometimes I laugh, sometimes I tell them they would not be welcome, but always; I try to encourage them to start preparing. I explain that each individual’s preparedness goals are different, but I believe that every household should have at least a month’s worth of food in reserve, in addition to basic sanitation and medical supplies.

                            A Little Perspective

                            Having spent several years between Bosnia, Iraq, and Afghanistan, I have had the benefit of seeing how some of the world’s poorest people live their daily lives. Sure, we have poor people here in America. But the immersion of being a part of a civilization, which is arguably 100 to 200 years behind America, has had a great impact on my belief of living within your means. They do with less, and often do not have any of the modern conveniences, that we [Americans] take for granted each and every day.

                            I believe the lifestyles in the small villages across Iraq, Afghanistan, and Bosnia, would resemble America post disaster. Having access to reliable power, if access at all, would be a daily issue. Having a clean water source would determine life and death. Acres and acres of crops would be scattered across all available space. Not knowing if you would grow enough food to provide for your family, would be a daily nightmare. Every able-body individual would work from sun up to sun down. And, not having adequate security would always be a concern.

                            On the other side of the village spectrum is the villager’s realization that they do not have much, and the desire to acquire things to improve their standard of living. When someone asks about my experiences deployed in combat, eventually the discussion will lead to the children caught in total chaos.

                            Those children will beg for anything shiny or electrical, ask for food, bottled water, and candy. We [Americans] take these requests for granted, as we can drive to a store and purchase whatever we want on the internet. But, what happens if there are no stores? What if our lives revert to how these third world children live every day? Where would you draw the line?

                            5 Steps to Do Now

                            To avoid the need to draw the line, you can take the following steps. This list only works for family members and friends that are receptive to your constant preparedness lifestyle recommendations.

                            Communicate regularly with extended family members and close friends on the need to start preparing. Do not try to be too over the top. Taking a hostile approach usually will not work and you will often create a barrier.

                            Identify purchases that can make a big difference if ever needed. For around $20, you can purchase a 50lbs bag of rice. This will go a long way, and is a great food storage staple. A one month’s supply of food can be achieved in a short amount of time, and even on a limited budget.

                            Offer to store food and other survival items, if they provide money for the purchases. Some individuals are not comfortable learning new skills, are not interested in learning the basics, or do not have the free time. Additionally, getting started in areas such as food storage could be an expensive upfront cost. Instead of recommending they purchase a dehydrator, let them know that you can dehydrate the foods for them, if they provide the items and/or give you money.

                            Purchase additional items to assist extended family and friends. For instance, I have purchased a Survival Bag, plus contents, for my brother and sister-in-law. This could be a birthday / holiday present, or you can leave it amongst your stores. You do not need to let them know that you have purchased these items until they actually need them.

                            Turn preparing into a family event. I remember each summer my family would get together and can food from the garden. While, not what I consider preparing, you could use a similar method. Plan camping outings, and demonstrate using survival items. Have family and friends over, and cook using a solar cooker. These little things could eventually spark interest.

                            5 Ways to Draw the Line

                            The reason I brought up the children of Iraq, Afghanistan, and Bosnia was because they taught me an important lesson about the desire to have something they could not get on their own. I sometimes have nightmares of some child saying “Mister, Mister.” While the nightmares are not true, the calls for "Mr., Mr." were the sign for me to give them a pen, pencil, water bottle, Meal Ready to Eat (MRE), watch, glasses, or any other item that they could see in my possession. While, most people will naturally want to help out a person in need, especially a child, the harsh reality of giving in is also an important lesson to learn. If I would give them something, the next time they saw me they would run up and say “Mister, Mister,” with arms held out waiting for me to repeat the process. I gave up a lot of my personal belongings, water bottles, and food items.

                            Post disaster, each resource will be consumed or used for trader/barter. Be it a child, or your neighbor, be careful who receives your charity, because they will expect for you to repeat the process. Let’s face it; your supplies will only last for a certain amount of time before they will have to be replenished.

                            So how do we go about letting our family and friends know that we will not be able to assist them for a prolonged period of time if something were to ever occur? The methods below are only recommendations, and each person will need to decide which route to take.

                            Let them know that if something were to happen, that you could only help them out for a few days. After that, they will have to move on because you will not have enough to support your immediate family.

                            Do not allow them to stay in your home. By allowing someone to move in, even if under the understanding it could only be for a few days, most individuals will not leave unless forced to. Call it post-apocalypse squatter rights.

                            Do not give into pleas, as they may show signs of weakness. It will be hard, but you need to weigh your family’s survival against the needs of another.

                            Take a low profile approach post disaster. Do not manicure your yard. If possible, do not advertise you have extra food or can generate power. Blend in as much as possible.

                            Leave. While this is extreme, you will not have to worry about turning around a close family member or friend, or jeopardizing your family’s survival by giving charity. If possible, move to another area or retreat when the signs present themselves. People that reside in that area will not know what you have. Additionally, your family members cannot come knocking on your door if they do not know where to find you.


                            For most of us, it will be hard to turn down a person in need. That is, it will be hard up until the point you need something yourself. It takes weeks to starve to death, and if you were charitable you will regret every second of it. Is this harsh? Yes. But, it is reality. Be Prepared. Get Connected.
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                            • #15
                              Re: Retreat Security, OPSEC

                              Hardening the Homestead by Lizard Farmer

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