Monday, May 14, 2018

May 14, 2018 -- A Quick Run Around the Web

Today's video is one that has attracted a lot of attention. It shows an off-duty female military police officer in Brazil shoot an armed robber. The video is only 48 seconds, so give it a watch. One lesson that I particularly liked was that the officer fired her shot, then rapidly backed away so she had cover/concealment behind a car. The robber looked like he was trying initially to shoot back at her, but couldn't track her. After a moment (probably after she identified herself) he gave up. 


  • "Active Killer Salt Licks"--Active Response Training. The author of this guest post compares a "gun free" zone to a salt lick intended to attract deer; but in this case, the "gun free" zone attracts active shooters (or--and I like this term--rapid mass murder). He notes:
While the active killer typically has Numerous Unstable or Troubling Symptoms, he is also a coward, not looking for a fight. He wants to kill a bunch of defenseless people, without risk to himself. He is looking out for his own personal health, safety and welfare. This is true even if he plans on committing suicide afterwards to avoid the unpleasantness of being held responsible.
  • "Calibers for Beginners: What You Need to Know About .45 ACP"--The Truth About Guns. The intent of the author is to present a quick overview of the .45 ACP to someone new to the cartridge. However, for some reason I was irritated by the repeated comments about the "myth" of the .45 ACPs stopping power and "over-hyped war legacy." It is true that given modern hollowpoint bullets, there is no advantage to using the .45 ACP over the 9 mm. But that wasn't (and isn't) the case when shooting full-metal jacket. 
  • "FBI Acknowledges Life-Saving Potential Of Armed Citizens"--Daily Caller (h/t Weasel Zippers). The final conclusion of an FBI report on active shooter events in 2016 and 2017:
Armed and unarmed citizens engaged the shooter in 10 incidents. They safely and successfully ended the shootings in eight of those incidents. Their selfless actions likely saved many lives. The enhanced threat posed by active shooters and the swiftness with which active shooter incidents unfold support the importance of preparation by law enforcement officers and citizens alike.
  • "Martial Arts and Newton's Laws of Motion"--The Science Classroom.  Somewhere in my collection, I have a book on this subject, but this is an interesting introduction to how physics shows up in the fighting arts.
  • "Home invasion in Argentina: 3 Very important lessons learned"--The Modern Survivalist. An elderly man was forced to shoot and kill the perpetrator of a home invasion. Turned out that the perp was a young man that the elderly man and his wife had befriended, and using his girlfriend to gain admission to the house while armed and masked. FerFal has three lessons he draws from the incident: (1) you can't trust strangers (or people generally), (2) even a pipsqueak round can get the job done with the right shot placement (in this case, the guy was using an old .32 revolver), and (3) an example of how the revolver can be superior to the semi-auto for someone who is not going to practice and will end up throwing the gun in a drawer for decades with no care or concern.
  • "The U.S. Army is Looking for Its First New Submachine Gun Since WWII"--Popular Science. The Army has published a request for information (RFI) for a submachine gun, so don't read too much into this announcement. However, it seems in line with the Army's current preoccupation with finding a replacement to the 5.56, which will likely be a larger (and harder recoiling) round. Consequently, and somewhat counterintuitively, someone in the Army sees a need for a personal defense weapon for troops behind the line that will NOT use the new cartridge; and apparently the Army is interested in something that will use the same ammunition (9mm) as the service pistol, but not 5.56 ... because logistics. Frankly, I'm not surprised. The only reason that submachine guns remained in use among Western militaries for as long as they did (into the 1980s in some cases) was because 7.62 NATO was too heavy for auxiliary troops (compare this to the Soviet Union which jettisoned submachine guns after adopting the AK firing an intermediate cartridge). If we are returning to the larger weapons, we likewise will see a demand for a separate weapon system for auxiliaries. Whether that stays the M4 carbine, or is something new is questionable.
  • "EMP Commission warns ‘blackout’ of electricity, food, water to last ‘year or longer,’ huge death toll"--Washington Examiner. When I first saw this, I thought it was old news--EMP commission reports had been published in 2004 and 2008. But I was wrong. According to the article, the government had reformed the EMP Commission, and the warning is from a July 2017 report. While the references in the executive summary refer to more recent articles and papers, I don't see anything definitive about newer testing of equipment and effects from that relied on in the 2004 and 2008 reports. However, the article indicated that there were more reports awaiting declassification, so we'll probably see some more about the research and testing on which they relied.
  • "Assessment Of SOF Ambush In Niger, The Gun, And Major General Bob Scales"--The Captain's Journal. The ambush, as you may remember, occurred last year (2017). General Scales has suggested that if the SOF unit had had an improved weapon over the M16/M4, they would have fared better in the battle. Herschel Smith disagrees, arguing that the weapon and round (5.56) were not at fault, but, rather, the problem lay with the mission planning, poor reaction to fire, and the lack of combined arms such as a SAW or a grenade launcher. Read the whole thing and watch the accompanying video. 

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