- Thanksgiving keeps getting better: Castro is dead. "Farewell to Cuba’s brutal Big Brother"--Washington Post. The author notes the numerous ways that Castro was a tyrant:
If this were a just world, 13 facts would be etched on Castro’s tombstone and highlighted in every obituary, as bullet points — a fitting metaphor for someone who used firing squads to murder thousands of his own people.
●He turned Cuba into a colony of the Soviet Union and nearly caused a nuclear holocaust.
●He sponsored terrorism wherever he could and allied himself with many of the worst dictators on earth.
●He was responsible for so many thousands of executions and disappearances in Cuba that a precise number is hard to reckon.
●He brooked no dissent and built concentration camps and prisons at an unprecedented rate, filling them to capacity, incarcerating a higher percentage of his own people than most other modern dictators, including Stalin.
●He condoned and encouraged torture and extrajudicial killings.
●He forced nearly 20 percent of his people into exile, and prompted thousands to meet their deaths at sea, unseen and uncounted, while fleeing from him in crude vessels.
●He claimed all property for himself and his henchmen, strangled food production and impoverished the vast majority of his people.
●He outlawed private enterprise and labor unions, wiped out Cuba’s large middle class and turned Cubans into slaves of the state.
●He persecuted gay people and tried to eradicate religion.
●He censored all means of expression and communication.
●He established a fraudulent school system that provided indoctrination rather than education, and created a two-tier health-care system, with inferior medical care for the majority of Cubans and superior care for himself and his oligarchy, and then claimed that all his repressive measures were absolutely necessary to ensure the survival of these two ostensibly “free” social welfare projects.
●He turned Cuba into a labyrinth of ruins and established an apartheid society in which millions of foreign visitors enjoyed rights and privileges forbidden to his people.
●He never apologized for any of his crimes and never stood trial for them.
In sum, Fidel Castro was the spitting image of Big Brother in George Orwell’s novel “1984.” So, adiós, Big Brother, king of all Cuban nightmares. And may your successor, Little Brother, soon slide off the bloody throne bequeathed to him.
- "What Would a Long Range Sharpshooter Infantry Paradigm Look Like? Part 1: The Weapons"--The Firearms Blog. Nathaniel F. "explore[s] one of the most heavily promoted future infantry small arms system concepts: A shift from close range 5.56mm assault rifles and automatic rifles backed up by longer-ranged 7.62mm weapons in the weapons squad and used by designated marksmen in the rifle squads, to a new, longer ranged marksmanship-oriented force designed to achieve 'overmatch' (i.e., to outrange) against enemy 7.62mm small arms, and to defeat them with superior precision and lethality of fire." In this part, he discusses the weapons and ammunition, looking at the trade-offs of a hypothetical "ideal" round capable of dominating at the 600 - 1000 meter range. The round would also dictate barrel length; to get optimal performance, the barrel would likely need to be between 16 inches and 20 inches, depending on the ammunition.
- "The danger of retention and contact shooting"--Max Ox at Multibriefs: Exclusive (h/t Defensive Pistolcraft). The point of this article is that the standard training on contact shooting--generally having your non-dominant hand or elbow extended toward the perpetrator to keep him from being able to grab you or your gun--doesn't always work in the real world. Ox writes:
In force-on-force work I've done, the time to get the gun into play varies from 1-4 seconds, depending on the type of concealment (if any), how compliant your training partner is, and if Mr. Murphy and his law make a visit during the process.
As soon as the attacker acts, the [contact shooting] technique doesn't work anymore.
An untrained fighter can deliver 3-5 strikes per second or 1-3 "haymaker" or "lights-out" strikes per second. Those strikes could be with his hands, a knife, golf club, tire iron, baseball bat, etc. In a perfect world, you're looking at 1-1.5 seconds to deliver the first shot from your gun — and it's probably going to be a gut shot. In a perfect world, that gut shot will instantly stop your attacker.
But that's not the way it usually works.
Noncompliant attackers who are taking actions that justify you shooting them are probably going to be hitting, cutting or shooting you during the time it takes you to get your gun into the fight.
There's a good chance he'll try to go for your gun or hurt you to keep you from shooting him. And there's a good chance that 1-2 pistol shots to the gut aren't going to stop the fight before he does more damage to you — regardless of how lethal those shots may end up being.
Contact shooting just doesn't work well in that context. Ask anyone who's tried it with force-on-force training, and they'll tell you the same thing: It only works with a compliant training partner.
So, what should you do? There are a couple of approaches.
The first is to strike your attacker in the throat or eyes instead of going for your gun. Either strike will happen much sooner than going for your gun, will get your attacker on the defensive faster than going for your gun, and have a better chance of minimizing the damage you'll take.
Depending on the attacker and his level of druggedness, drunkenness or derangement, the eye/throat strike may even stop the attack faster than a gut shot.
The second approach is to do rapid-fire, palm-heel strikes to the head/face until you shift your attacker's center of mass backward. As soon as this shift happens, you can take a step back, draw your pistol with the use of both hands before he starts advancing again, and engage that attacker or other attackers as needed.
Both are effective. Both have strengths. And both are way more likely to work in a real-life situation than an all-gun-all-the-time approach.
Read the whole thing.
- Related to the video, above: "How to Pair Barrel Twist Rates with Bullets"--Guns & Ammo. An article on twist rate for different weights of .223/5.56 bullets.
- Related: "Ruger Mini-14/30 Barrel Twist Rates"--Sunflower Ammo. The data is set out by year of manufacture and serial number. But, basically, until sometime in 1986, the Mini-14 used a 1:10 twist, then was changed to a 1:7 until 1997 when it went to 1:9. So, if you have a Mini-14 made between 1986 and 1997, you might get better accuracy by moving up to a heavier bullet: 62 grains or heavier.
- The left wants a civil war: "The Return of Assassination Fascination"--Michelle Malkin at Ammo Land. Well, we know the probable outcome if any such attempt succeeded.
- "Billionaires prepping for Armageddon with $1.5million 'Earthship' bunkers to survive the end of days"--Mirror. Whenever I read articles on this topic, I'm reminded of scriptures such as Isaiah 2:19: "And they shall go into the holes of the rocks, and into the caves of the earth, for fear of the Lord, and for the glory of his majesty, when he ariseth to shake terribly the earth."
- Well, this is ominous: "Robotic suits that give you SUPERHUMAN strength are being used by baggage handlers in Tokyo"--Daily Mail. According to the article, the suits are called by their acronym, HAL, and are manufactured by a company named Cyberdyne.
- Global warming update: "Scott and Shackleton logbooks prove Antarctic sea ice is not shrinking 100 years after expeditions"--The Telegraph. It reports:
Antarctic sea ice had barely changed from where it was 100 years ago, scientists have discovered, after poring over the logbooks of great polar explorers such as Robert Falcon Scott and Ernest Shackleton.
Experts were concerned that ice at the South Pole had declined significantly since the 1950s, which they feared was driven by man-made climate change.
But new analysis suggests that conditions are now virtually identical to when the Terra Nova and Endurance sailed to the continent in the early 1900s, indicating that declines are part of a natural cycle and not the result of global warming.
- An inconvenient truth: "Tokyo has November snow for first time in 54 years"--Yahoo News.
- "Central Americans surge north, hoping to reach U.S. before Trump inauguration"--Yahoo News. Per the article: "Central American countries warned on Thursday that large numbers of migrants have fled their poor, violent homes since Donald Trump's surprise election win, hoping to reach the United States before he takes office next year."
- Nothing to worry about, though. Right? "Nearly three dozen bodies and nine human heads are found in clandestine graves in southern Mexico"--Daily Mail. According to the article, Mexican authorities are continuing to look for additional graves. The nine heads were being kept in coolers. Based on the information in the article, the compound where the bodies were discovered was apparently where a gang kept kidnapping victims, and got rid of those that were of no use to them.
- "An ocean of water is found 620 miles below Earth's surface - and if it dries up, life on our planet could END"--Daily Mail. Although the total quantity of water in the lower mantle is unknown, the researchers estimate that it is probably equal to the total mount of water in the surface oceans. This reminds of something ...
In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, the seventeenth day of the month, the same day were all the fountains of the great deep broken up, and the windows of heaven were opened.