Tactics of the Survivor, by NC Scout

You can throw a rock and hit any of the so-called ‘tactical’ schools which teach their own version of combat skills to preppers under the guise of ‘getting you ready’ for golden hordes and Blue Helmet Army, post-badness. They’re really just heavily condensed Infantry tactics schools, which conveniently forget the fact that a lot of Infantrymen die without a huge supply line following them, and almost never cover the burden of consequences of extended contact on your people. While all of that run n’ gun is nice, and certainly sells lots of AR-15s and multicam kit, rarely is the reality presented that actually portrays anything close to what’s relevant.

  1. You Don’t Have an Army Behind You.
  2. You are your Own Logistics.
  3. You Can Only Defend What You Can Support (and you need to know how to support what you plan on defending).

A lot of folks throw an overly large amount of money towards firearms and ammo, maybe a comparable amount to armor, and a little less to training, usually at the sacrifice of a large number of other productive things they could be spending their time and money on. Some of the better people I’ve met actively work to diversify their skill set among their groups, going far beyond the militia-plus-goats that many call preparedness, which is preferred in the long run. Being able to defend what you have and your posterity is a cornerstone of American, and human for that matter, culture, and so the want of being able to maximize your ability to do so is understandable. But it should not be the only concern, and should not be hounded upon as the lone solution to your preparedness needs. You’re probably not the only one in your community into preparing, and looking like a force of one when things go bad will make you an easy target.

You and What Army, Pal?

The biggest misconception, and one that draws a lot of ire from those of us having been around a while, is the overemphasis of militias and LGOPs (in this case, ‘Little Groups Of Preppers’) on standard tactical prowess of standing armies. Talk to any ‘militia rep’ and usually they’re start pointing to the same handful of military manuals for training, be it FM 7-8 ‘Infantry Platoon and Squad’, SH 21-76 ‘Ranger Handbook’, FM 21-76 ‘US Army Survival Manual’ and probably last, but should be first among the more serious, FM 23-10 ‘US Army Sniper Training’. Now in my experience, none of these people actually possessed any of the qualifications contained in those manuals, aside from what they tell themselves, but that’s another story.

As a reference, these books are great. But note I said as a reference; they supplement working knowledge the same way a car’s manual does. I’ve used each of these references in a school setting, where I had to learn the material in a hands on fashion and then was tested on it to the standards listed in the book. That’s the way it works; professional armies are a by-the-numbers affair. The handbooks then are used as a reference later on down the road in the various units the graduates from the schools go to, and there they groom new candidates to be sent to the schools.

Here’s the deal- each of those, and many of the subject matter books available out there which supplement the skillsets, assume you’re a member of a standing army. That means all of the supporting assets and logistical lines and scheme of maneuver. The Infantry’s first job is to take and hold terrain, and everything supports him in this task. But the Survivalist doesn’t have this luxury. The Survivalist only has what is locally produced in his community. The Survivalist’s primary job then is to avoid conflict, because it’s actually not just a waste of material and manpower, it also scares the deer away and panics the horses. And if conflict is necessary, then approach it by a completely different means than the way the Infantry would, which is usually noisy, bulky, and assumes the need for a plethora of weapons that are larger than just rifles. No matter how hard you try or how many times that high-speed tactical trainer told you different, you can’t go toe to toe with a standing army- any standing army- using matching tactics and expect to live. You will at best render a squad ineffective; when the rest of their platoon calls the Company occupying the area, and the Battalion, the weight of the world will come crashing in on you. I know, I’ve done it.

Facing the potential Blue Helmet Army then becomes a war of attrition; it’s a thinking man’s game of bait and kill. It’s not the body count that matters but the ability of the guerrilla to destroy the morale of the standing army. They may have the watches, but you have the time. Selective, one shot kills akin to a skilled hunter become far more preferable to the fire-and-maneuver perfected by Light Infantry. A team of three marksmen who know how one another operate loosely dispersed in an area can quickly render a platoon or even company combat ineffective. Compared to the school of thought that shooting fast at stationary targets is the marquee of tactical prowess, the hunter’s approach conserves material and significantly diminishes the human cost of battle. Pre-planned hide sites, deception, and baiting are all skills taught to snipers; he picks where and when he makes the shot amid his theater of destruction; and such a tactic absolutely crushes the morale of an enemy when they have little to nothing to return fire towards. I know, I’ve been both the hunter and the hunted on either end of the riflescope.

But what if the ‘Blue Helmet Army’ doesn’t come? What if the biggest fear, and not one so far-fetched, is that without the just-in-time supply line, brigands will form and when they’re done raiding their inner-city sanctums they move out into the countryside to loot n’ scoot like the plague of locusts they are? It’s not only plausible, I’d very easily argue it’s likely. Decades of conditioning to dependence upon socialist welfare and fast, cheap, GMO-laden food have created an army of obese monsters. What to do about them when they come a knockin? Again, remember that you don’t have an army behind you. And while they may be unskilled, they’re still people, and suffer the same natural error that favors the hunter.

People always take the path of least resistance under duress. The human locust would be no different. Why run through the woods when you can follow a road? Why walk over the hill when you can follow the valley? Why hug the hill when you can follow the river in the valley? All water leads to civilization, by the way. This path of least resistance is also called ‘natural lines of drift‘ which people frequent. The human locust plague is the same. So we can very easily take out our road map, which also has rivers, lakes, and tributaries marked on them, and figure out the general pattern they’ll be following. This gives us the points at which we build our trap- the point where they travel, the point where they feed, the point where they drink. Again, with a small team dispersed wide and well coordinated, laying a trap, the horde will figure out quick that their progress into the next little town over was a horrible idea. Even if they’re armed with all those $500 AR 15s they looted from the gunstores and suburbia, with less than 100 rounds you’ve won the battle. That is, provided you can shoot out to the effective range of your own weapon, practice regularly, and work with the folks who are also concerned with doing such. This all can be done by thinking like a competent hunter versus an Infantryman. Your goal is to move without being heard, see without being seen, and kill without getting killed. This should not be confused with shooting fast at stuff and running around dressed like an Ranger Regiment Assaulter. You are not that, and do not have what supports him in his task. 

Once you do what you need to quickly and effectively without much hoopla, you can go home and focus on what’s more important- feeding and raising your family for the coming renaissance.

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Welcome to the New One!

IMG_0302It’s the first post of North Carolina’s newest site on Prepping, Survivalism and a move towards Self Reliance. This one is quite a bit different from what I do over at Brushbeater– while that one is more military/operational themed, this blog is going to focus on the more day-to-day aspects of realistic self reliance. This one is much more open ended; drop in from time to time, submit some articles if you want, share what you know.

cabin

Sent to you live from a little cabin in the woods.