A long-time reader alerted me to this video: "Special Forces Medic Reviews Tourniquets" --Tactical Rifleman (10 min.)
- "There's More to Gunpowder Than You Think"--Guns & Ammo. A nice overview of how gun powder is made and the basic types of gunpowder. An excerpt:
The term “progressivity” has been thrown around a lot recently in marketing campaigns, but it has not been well defined. As it applies to gun propellants, it’s defined as the burning surface area or amount of gas a propellant can produce compared to the percent of the grain of propellant that has burned.
There are regressive, neutral and progressive burning propellants. The more progressive the power, the higher the performance the propellant will produce. This is what most new propellant products have been about, which include Alliant Power Pro, Hodgdon Hybrid and Hornady Superformance.
Regressive burning means there is constantly less surface area or gas produced as the propellant grain burns. An example of this would be a stick shape with no hole in it or a true spherical propellant.
Neutral burning means the propellant has essentially the same surface area as it burns and produces a constant amount of gas as it burns. This would be a stick propellant with a single hole through it. Virtually all small-arms stick propellant is made with a very small hole through each grain.
Progressive means it’s surface area or gas production rate increases as it burns. Examples would be large cannon propellant with multiple holes or stick and ball propellant that has its burn rate or gas production rate chemically controlled.
You will get the highest performance from the most progressive propellant. It will produce greater amounts of gas for a time as the projectile moves faster down the bore, keeping higher pressure on the projectile and producing higher velocity.
- As the prices for ARs hover at low levels, but the prices for AKs rise, Josh Wayner asks "Should You Buy An AK-47 Rifle?" His conclusion is that, unless you are buying a quality AK for investment or collecting purposes, or you simply want an AK style rifle, you are better off getting an AR style rifle for practical use (e.g., self-defense, plinking, hunting).
- "THE AREA DENIAL WEAPON"--American Partisan. This article assumes that you won't have access to a light machine gun. The author suggests that you can emulate the concept underlying the RPK and the M27--essentially using a heavy duty rifle with larger magazine capacity to provide suppressive fire. The author explains:
My solution, is this. Since my family/friends are fairly 5.56 AR centric for our defensive weapons, I built up my version of a poor mans RPK/M27 using a Palmetto State Armory stripped lower, lower part build kit, and a 20″ free floated 5.56 upper. To this I added a Magpul bipod and a Primary Arms 3x compact Prism Scope. To feed it, I am using 40 round Magpul PMags and Magpul D-60 drums. This gives me a very close approximation to the RPK and its use of 40 round mags and 75 round drums. With the 40 round mags and 60 round drums and the weapon placed in a fortified position, it allows 1 person to generate a nice sustained rate of fire that can help deny a threat the use of the aforementioned areas and approach avenues. This can serve multiple purposes, such as an intimidating deterrent, or, giving a couple of friends/team mates time to maneuver on the threat by keeping them pinned down.
He also maintains that the lack of full auto capability is not as big a disadvantage as it would seem since you can still obtain a reasonable rate of fire, but the lower rate of fire will help conserve ammunition.
- What the military has that we don't: "INNOVATIVE: NAMMO’S NEW M72 FFE—AN ACHIEVEMENT IN PERFECT COUNTERMASS BALANCE"--Small Arms Defense Journal. More generally, the article explains:
The terms “recoilless rifle,” “recoilless launcher” and “recoilless gun” are usually synoptic to most people. All three represent a type of lightweight artillery system configured into a man-portable launcher that ejects some form of countermass (such as propellant back blast) from the rear of the weapon when fired. This countermass ejection subsequently serves to counteract most of the weapon’s recoil, while at the same time creating forward propulsion for the projectile. Employing Newton’s 3rd Law of Motion, the simple process of equal and opposing forces reacting against one another, eliminates the need for massive recoil-absorbing devices associated with conventional cannons and artillery pieces. The result is a thin-walled, lightweight, launch barrel that launches a relatively large projectile.
While recoilless rifles, recoilless launchers and recoilless guns appear outwardly similar, there are some discrete technical differences. Recoilless rifles differ from recoilless launchers and recoilless guns. Recoilless rifles use ammunition that resembles conventional metallic-cased ammunition (only with vents perforating the cartridge casings), and they have rifled barrels that fire spin-stabilized projectiles. Recoilless launchers and recoilless guns are smoothbore variants that fire fin-stabilized rockets or fin-stabilized projectiles. This important distinction between spin-stabilized and fin-stabilized projectiles is often lost in discussion. Even though the launchers and the rounds they fire are different, they’re many times all mistakenly called recoilless rifles.
There is another key distinction between recoilless rifles, launchers and guns. A recoilless launcher fires a tube-launched, fin-stabilized rocket that employs a recoilless rocket launch principle. A recoilless rifle and recoilless gun both fire recoilless shells that use conventional gun propellant that often shoots fin-stabilized ballistic projectiles. Therefore, the significant difference (whether man-portable or hard-mounted) is that the projectile of the recoilless rifle or gun is initially launched using conventional propellant (a form of modern smokeless gunpowder) rather than a rocket motor.
A second point is that countermass recoil compensation in recoilless rifles and guns significantly reduces their effective range as compared to recoilless rocket launchers. While some recoilless gun variants utilize rocket-assisted rounds to extend the effective range, the projectile is still ejected from the gun barrel by first firing a gunpowder propellant charge. Once the projectile has left the launch tube, the rocket motor ignites and burns to drive it downrange. So, in general terms, the tradeoff for greatly diminished recoil in a recoilless rifle or gun (and ease of man-carried portability) is reduced range. That said, it must be remembered that range is based on projectile initial angular rate and time of flight (muzzle velocity and aerodynamic drag).
- Of course, we have to be realistic of what we need and what we will be protecting: "MAPS AND PINS WON’T SAVE YOU, PART I: UNDERSTANDING YOUR AO"--American Partisan. In a dash of cold water on many putative partisans, the author maintains that our area of operation is more limited and, perhaps, different than we envision. For instance, it is not the area that you might meet with friends to train unless that is your backyard. It probably is no greater than where you can drive in a few minutes or less.
- ".300 PRC: Better Than The Rest"--Shooting Times. This cartridge was specifically designed for long range shooting. The case is a .375 Ruger necked down to .30 caliber with a long neck to accommodate the long for caliber bullets used for long distance shooting. The author compares it to other .30 caliber cartridges that are used for long distance shooting--the .300 Winchester Magnum, .300 Winchester Short Magnum, .30 Nosler, .300 Remington Ultra-Mag., .300 Weatherby Magnum, .300 Norma Magnum--and discusses why he thinks it does the job better.
- "Break Barrel Air Rifle – Why it’s the Best for Survival & Preparedness"--Modern Survival Blog. The author explains why he thinks a break barrel air rifle is the best type of air rifle (compressed gas) rifle for preppers--at least for air rifles in the .177 or .22 caliber range. Basically it comes down to power and ease of recharging the rifle when you can't go to the store to buy another CO2 cartridge or stop by the local scuba shop to recharge your high pressure cylinders.
- "How to set up a prepper’s toolbox"--City Prepper. A list of usefully sized and number of tools for a tool kit for recovering from a disaster but that would still be portable. More than a basic set of household tools, but less than what you probably have in your tool cabinet or hanging off your peg boards.
- "Force for Hire: The Private Market for Special Operations Forces"--Georgetown Security Studies Review. This article discusses the prevalence of mercenaries ("security contractors") in many combat regions and, in particular, their employment by nations that have credible and well-trained military forces. The author primarily focuses on their use being tied to the concept of deniability, but that it becomes harder for nations to deny involvement the more these forces are used (both length of time and the numbers employed). Preppers should be concerned about the use of mercenaries for other reasons. Black Water personnel were some of the very first "first responders" deployed into New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, and they weren't there to deliver food and water or to rescue people. They were there to stomp down any looting or other social unrest. One of the advantages that they offered was that they were not constrained by the Posse Comitatus Act or other laws that might restrict the use of military forces or law enforcement. As it was, martial law was declared, so many of these restrictions became moot; but, nevertheless, there they (Black Water) were. While the presence of security contractors has not received attention in subsequent disasters, I cannot tell if this is simply because they weren't used, or that they were better at avoiding media attention. I would expect, however, that any major disaster in the United States has the potential to see mercenaries or security contractors deployed. It may not be the local sheriff or police coming to confiscate weapons, but mercenaries. Just something to keep in mind.
"Earth Catastrophe Cycle | Plasma Formations"--Suspicious Observers (9 min.)
- A rogue agency: "NYT Reveals FBI Retaliated Against Trump For Comey Firing"--The Federalist. From the article:
Admitting there is no actual evidence for their probe into whether Trump “worked for the Russians,” FBI officials instead cited their foreign policy differences with him, his lawful firing of bungling FBI Director James Comey, and alarm that he accurately revealed to the American public that he was told he wasn’t under investigation by the FBI, when they preferred to hide that fact.
- Related: "The “Secret Research Project” – Why Did The IRS Give The DOJ Twenty-One CD ROM’s?…"--The Last Refuge. From the article:
As a result of a trillion dollar stimulus filled with scheme and graft; and as a result of Obamacare being similarly schemed in backroom deals and late night votes; President Obama was “shellacked” in the November 2010 election.
The White House didn’t see the defeat a flawed policy issue; rather as the entrenched ideologues they are, they saw the SCOTUS case “citizens united” as the principle tool used by the White House opponents to organize and fund political movements, ie. the tea party.
The Obama Team response to the 2010 Shellacking was to use the Dept. of Justice (AG Eric Holder) to weaponize the IRS and go after groups -like Tea Party Groups- organized under the financial umbrella of 501(c)(4) donation structuring.
Years later, when the scheme was discovered – the White House denied knowledge (“not even a smidgen of corruption”), the DOJ feigned ignorance, and the IRS began working overtime trying to hide the construct of the prior communication, planning and strategy.
So what where on those disks? According to the article, they contained "a 1.1 million page database of information from 501(c)(4) tax exempt organizations" that had been improperly turned over to the FBI. Supposedly the FBI will be returning the whole thing to the IRS.
- "Do the Math: Trump’s Wall Is $25 Billion, Illegals Cost $165 Billion"--American Greatness. That is $165 billion per year. Fortunately, construction of the wall continues.
- "Conrad Black: America's resurgence is reshaping the world"--National Post. The author relates:
[T]he economy of the United States is astoundingly strong: full employment, an expanding work force, negligible inflation and about three per cent economic growth. And it is a broad economic recovery, not based on service industries as in the United Kingdom (where London handles most of Europe’s financial industry, while most of British industry has fled), and not based largely on the fluctuating resources markets as has often been Canada’s experience. In the eight years of president Obama, the United States lost 219,000 manufacturing jobs; in the two years of Trump, the country has added 477,000 manufacturing jobs.
- This seems unfortunate given that the shortage of tech workers is a made-up crises by tech companies in order to import lower-salary workers: "Changes to H-1B Visas to Include ‘Potential Path to Citizenship,’ Trump Says"--Epoch Times.
- "2 In Critical Condition, 2 In Custody After Possible Gang-Related New Jersey Mall Shooting"--Weasel Zippers. One of the people that had called 911 reported that it was 20 minutes before police reached his location. In a large structure like a mall, even if police arrive immediately, it may be many more minutes before they reach you.
- Gang related shooting in a Salt Lake City mall injured two people. According to the news report, "[t]he suspects were identified as Jesus J. Payan-Mendoza and Jorge Crecencio-Gonzalez." Police also indicated that "everyone involved in the shooting was a member of one gang or another."
- "Escape from Portland"--Sultan Knish. From the lede:
It was a big year in Portland where the murder rate rose 18.6%. That was the perfect time for Portland’s progressive politburo to spend over $1 million on unarmed cops armed only with pepper spray.
There was a little bit of excitement when it was learned that their 200 hours of training would include “Taser Orientation” suggesting that they might be allowed to carry tasers. But Mayor Wheeler’s office explained that the weaponless cops weren’t being trained to use tasers, but “how to avoid being tased”.
Other crimes are on the rise, and it all seems to be tied to the increasing number of homeless. A couple of the consequences are neighborhoods forming their own watches and stagnating home prices.
Boise, Idaho, like most other cities, has its share of homeless. The local shelter, run by a Christian ministry, has been very successful with dealing with the homeless, however, and even getting them back into jobs and off the streets, which has gained favorable attention from the city. Both the city and the shelter, however, have been hamstrung repeatedly by the federal courts and groups that claim to advocate for the homeless. These groups and the courts don't care about the homeless or solving problems--they just want to advance their leftist world-view by preventing the homeless from being exposed to Christianity, and require that the single men to be intermixed with the women and children even as to sleeping quarters.
- Related: "Viral Charity and the Feel-Good Mentality"--American Greatness. An excerpt: "These programs don’t fundamentally change anything. They don’t actually help people who are suffering to make their lives better. And they’re not meant to. Instead, they are meant to assuage the guilt of smug pseudo-intellectual millennials and guarantee the comfort of wealthy yuppies."