[As a Christmas gift, Oslik sent me this quite long article on the vulnerability of individuals resulting, according to him, from a lack of equipment and/or competences. He points out many countries throughout History which have been the graveyards of many disarmed and uncompetent individuals. Feel free to take his words with a pinch of salt, as I wasn't able to back up with a source of information every fact he presents. Estimated reading time : 45min]
"3 hours without shelter. 3 days without clean water. 30 days without clean food. 30 years without a S.O."
- prepper saying
"3 seconds without a rifle and the will to self-defend with it. 30 seconds without marksmanship. 300 seconds without SUT. 3 hours without prepping."Let's do a quick tour in history, with a heavy emphasis on the twentieth century, which is when repeating rifles really became common place; we'll try to determine what does not matter -- and more importantly what DOES matter -- in allowing people to be in control of their life, to live prosperous and fed, not be expelled from their lands, free of death threats and all forms of violence, ranging from the most basic to the most extensive -- torture and genocide come to mind.
- survivalist saying
Among the sources used to write this article:
- The Mother of All Stats - The Human Cost of "Gun Control" Ideas
- Gun Control: The Big Picture
- Addicted to War (available in paperback or online) (you may read also this best-of US foreign policy)
- Killing Hope, by William Blum (available online ; extracts in HTML here).
- Full Spectrum Disorder (Stan Goff, 2003) publised by Soft Skull Press.
- Crossing the rubicon, Mike Ruppert
Spain (civil war)
Let's start with the 1936-1939 Spanish civil war. It is a more overt and more contained mirror of what was to occur soon after in the rest of Western Europe. More contained, because despite the abundant external support to both sides, during all three years the "wet work" nerver overflows the country borders, it remains a striclty Spanish-Spanish affair. And more overt, because in contrast to the fifth column work by La Cagoule in France, the Reichstag Fire that occured in Germany, or even the "Business Plot" in the US, Franco overtly goes to war and does the work "in your face". While La Cagoule in France initially attempts a (failed) False Flag, then resorts to secretely working with German powers that be to get their help overthrowing the Front Populaire, which was deemed too close to the communists, the Spanish franquistes just openly profess their feelings and their intent to crush opposition by force, and proceed to do it.
This is one of those "open secrets" that to this day remain little known, yet profundly important. The Spanish Civil war is what happens when you go to war against fascists with sub-par marksmanship and even more rotten tactics, while the French "drôle de guerre" and subsequent berezina is what happens when you are cursed with sub-par marksmanship and ignore your fifth column garden-variety fascists (which continues to this day) and let them ally with your arch-enemy-turned-nazi. But let's not get ahead of ourselves... What was the setup for the whole thing, and the marksmanship profile of both sides ?
Yes, as some apologists for the republicans will surely point out, the franquists did have substantial amounts of weaponry and support. So let's start with that: in addition to being the professional army (by contrast to the rag-tag "armed citizens" on the republican side), Franco also had support from US industrialists Ford, Studebaker and General Motors, who sent 12'000 trucks for troops transportation. The Nazis sent some stukhas for testing their "bomb diving run" techniques. Mussolini sent some tanks.
But guess what, the republican side had plenty of support too: Mexico sent dozens of thousands of rifles and millions of rounds. The USSR sent some rifles as well, with some "strings attached" (i.e. some political commissars and demanding that they be obeyed, we'll see how instrumental this was in the republican defeat). International Brigades formed, made famous by George Orwell since he was one of those 36'000 volunteers. Not that this personel was direly needed: the civil war roughly divided the country in two, with hundreds of thousands -- if not millions -- of people on the republican side. Contrast these numbers, keeping in mind the conflict's outcome, with the successes of fourth-generation warfare that occured in the twentieth century, with a few thousand personel at most. Castro's conquest of Cuba started with 20 men, for crying out loud.
The core of the problem then, is one of tactics: the Republicans and their Soviet advisers were often involved in (as opposed to the absolute need to NEVER be involved in) World War I style assaults on entrenched franquist troops, which then had a field day gunning down those human waves. This alone makes one wonder if they 'deserved' to win, given such an abysmal competency level... But it gets worse: the communists, not content with being murderously incompetent, also assassinated people whom they should have considered their allies, i.e. the anarchists -- pulling troops off the front-lines to do so, no less.
The Spanish civil war remains one of the biggest wasted opportunities in history. Not only because the republicans could have easily won instead of losing 500'000 men and women with the remainder submitting to decades of dictatorship and a Plan Condor-like kidnapping of thousands of babies, but also because Franco's victory emboldened Germany and Italy. As Franco subdued the last of the republicans in 1939, Axis powers got in gear rolling towards Poland. And above all, Spain is used as a "proof" that you can't win against fascists, by two-bit progressives who do not understand the first thing about defense and offense.
Next time someone tells you something as idiotic as "it does not matter if you're in the offense or defense", use the Spanish Civil War as a clue-by-four.
Finland (Winter War)
Already discussed -- as a reminder: after the so-called "finnish" shelling of Mainila, 1.5 million soviet soldiers crossed the finnish border... and met the "White Death". A tiny population of peasants-hunters-soldiers was able to hold back the USSR's Red Army off 90% of their territory.
France and the "Cagoule" fifth column.
It's no accident the "Crécy-Agincourt Syndrom" is named after French military defeats: they are deeply symbolic. It's easy to mock French military history as it is a disaster to begin with. But the reason why is perfectly illustrated during that part of their military history that involved the Hundred Years War against England... During that time, France, the (largely) bigger country, enjoying the home field advantage, consistently got its ass handed to it due to the sheer incompetence of its armies. Indeed French nobles kept the plebe vulnerable by forbidding them from acquiring and training with e.g. bows. This allowed the back-then aristocrat ruling class to maintain their stranglehold on them... with the sad result of their being also dominated and decimated on the battlefield by external threats.
Although they suffered this syndrom consistently throughout history, there is one remarkable occurence in the 20th century : La Cagoule. Modern-day activists like to point out at George W. Bush being voted in by SCOTUS ("5 votes count more than 100 million"), surfing on this own Reichstag Fire's wave with support from PNAC... But that was no huge novelty at all, one predecessor was Maréchal Pétain surfing on the Werhmacht's invasion after a (failed) false flag on 11 Sep. 1937, with support from La Cagoule. So how did that happen ?
Thing started pretty much as in 1936 Spain. Indeed 1936 France elected leftists ("Front Populaire") to the government. The anti-communists were incensed. But unlike in Spain, there was little they could do about it -- in the military structure, only the high brass disapproved of leftism, but they failed to mobilize the rank-and-file against the "communist" menace. After a few months of hand-wringing, the anti-communists decided to hell with it -- we'll stage a "communist" bombing attack against the chamber of commerce, that should do the trick, start an uprising, and thrown the people into our arms. But that 1937 false flag failed as well. That's when they resorted to Plan C, as in Cut a deal with Germany.
As documented in a few (too few, unfortunately) books, starting in 1939 the military brass's behavior was a very optimized "fight fire with fire" strategy; since the population refused to become anti-leftist, then by gosh they deserved to be punished for it, even if that meant making an "unholy" alliance. The aim was for the brass to crush their own (French) army and open the door wide to German invasion, so as to overthrown the Front Populaire from the outside. When the wet work reached France in 1940, those who disagreed with that coup, like then-colonel Charles De Gaulle, would then have to go into exile or be imprisonned.
This started by organising defense to be incompetent at the tactical level (poor use of tanks e.g.) and strategic level -- and was denounced as such by the British evacuating in a panic at Dunkirk. That resulted overall in a rapid rise in French casualties, despite their "home field" and "defensive" advantages. But even that did not suffice, as the numbers show clearly: there were 70'000 German casualties versus 100'000 French casualties. Then followed the evacuation of civilians streaming on the roads south, and the infamous canard "if we resist any longer the Germans will bomb Paris and we will lose some priceless cultural heritage and buildings". When even that failed, they threatened with cour-martial all the French units that refused to surrender, which finally did the trick.
What then, was the settlement with Germany at that point ? Not a cease-fire. Not an armistice. An actual bona fide surrender, with the french military brass sending the army's vehicles and gear to help strengthen the Wehrmacht, sending millions of French soldiers into prisonner camps in Germany, sending non-military Frenchmen as workers in German factories (the infamous "S.T.O.", whereby they helped manufacture Opel trucks, messerschmidt planes, bombs and ammunition used against Great Britain and later US G.I.s), sending food and staples, sending Jews (rounded up by French police) to German or French (Drancy) Death Camps, and so on and so friggin' forth.
You'd think France was threatened with extermination, if it had to resort to such extreme means to appease the Germans. Surely, if it was in such dire straits it was in no position to request anything at all. Yet the Germans were very generous: they granted the French military brass sovereignty over part of conquered France. And no small symbolic fraction, mind you, more like half of it.
So the French anti-communist/military brass got to rule the southern half of France whilst the nazis got hold of the northern half. Pétain got on the radio (for the youngest of our readers: remember there was no T.V. back then *g*) and told the population, crocodile tears streaming from his eyes -- we have sinned! my dear countrymen, we've been too far on the political left! now we have to pay the price for it.
If that is not the result of a deal, you gotta wonder what else they could have imagined to make the deal sweeter for Germany, in addition to sending military gear, military men into Stalags (and some actually went to fight alongside Germans, killing Russians ..etc, e.g. the Division Charlemagne), non-military men into factories... Should they have ordered French women be sent to German brothels as filles de joie as well.. Or should the French generals have shot their soldiers themselves with their own sidearms, for people to finally understand and believe that there was a genuine will to sabotage the country from the inside, with German's help.. Anyhow people now live with the results of the Big Lie and what followed. The involved generation and the Baby Boomer (next) generation did what they did in Indochina, Algeria, Africa, with even more zeal than they had during the occupation... And their offspring is waking up to the fact we're entering the red zone, with a big "Eat the Chosen People" flashing light. It's hard to be very optimistic for the future of that country. Maybe pockets of "swiss-like" populations will still stand up after the rest has collapsed.
Switzerland (esp. W.W.2)
The helvetic confederation is one of the places in the world where possession of a "marksman rifle" is most encouraged: the fass90/SIG-550 is standard issue during military service; when that service ends, the rifle is proposed for sale to the user at a reduced price, after being modified from select-fire to S/A. Adding up military-issue rifles, military-issue-turned-civilian rifles and other rifles people purchase with their own money, Swiss rifle ownership is amongh the highest in the world. As testimony to the gun culture of that country, it is very common to see a swiss citizen in supermarket cashier lines with their fass90 slung on their shoulder, purchasing groceries on their way back from the shooting range (see picture).
Indeed they of all people understand that training is paramount: rifle ownership is only one prerequisite of defense, the real foundation of defense is marksmanship.
The proof is in the pudding; the country has been free of invasion for many generations, including when the rest of Western Europe was under nazi domination and/or eagerly collaborating with the "final solution", sending trainloads of jews/homosexuals/gipsies/communists/resistors to the gas chambers. In his books, Stephen Halbrook explains just how opposite the situation was for those of the jews/communists ..etc that were Swiss : Swiss jews were in arms just as any other Swiss citizens, including commissioned officers in the highest ranks. Halbrook also analyses many archives documenting how detailed the German invasion plans were. Germany was very hesitant to invade Switzerland, probably the most heavily fortified and competently defended country of Europe. German hesitation was not for lack of bad feelings: in Target Switzerland (1998) Halbrook quotes Hitler, proclaming that
"all the rubbish of small nations existing in Europe must be liquidated," even if it meant he would later "be attacked as 'the butcher of the Swiss.'" In his diaries Josef Goebbels described Switzerland as "this stinking little state." The Gestapo prepared lists of Swiss to be executed once the Nazis overran the country.And Swiss neutrality was indeed tested. German bombing runs tried to take "shortcuts" in Swiss skies on their way to France, but they were shot down and the pilots made prisonner, much to the rage of the nazis. Later, German paratroopers tried to sabotage Swiss airfields. Then an invasion plan, Operation Tannenbaum, was elaborated. But by then Germany had almost lost the war and had other cookies in the fire... Swiss defenses had deterred Germany long enough that they never lost even one personnel to German fire, nor any civilians, be they jew or otherwise.
Contrast that with countries that failed the most basic standards of humanity, drowning their minorities in a sea of blood... and who sometimes have the gall to criticize Switzerland's conduct during the war, as red herrings to hide their own shameful behaviors.
USA, "Crécy-Agincourt" regions
The disarmed urbanized areas of the US are the simpler to analyze, being closest (or least remote) to other basket cases described in this page.
A few references to illustrate the C.A. Syndrom (hat tip to SurvivalBlog):
Concealed carry of handguns was banned in California in 1923. (One of many states to enact the "Uniform Act to Regulate the Sale and Possession of Firearms" -- which was originally aimed at part in disarming "uppity" black World War I veterans.) Then, in 1967 open carry of loaded guns on public streets or in motor vehicles was banned (one of then Governor Ronald Reagan's darkest days), out of fear of a few dozen "uppity" Black Panthers.And at the federal level:
The Gun Free School Zones Act (1990) [turned teachers and their pupils into sitting ducks, soft targets]This results in symptoms similar to other C.A. Syndrom areas and countries of the world, modulo a Middle Class which is larger than usual: people outside of the elite have more numerous, less educated and less empowered children. There is more "soft" violence and blood spilling: the metropolises -- theoritically less racist and less mysoginistic than the supposedly "backward" boonies -- in fact see their fair share of rapes, economic equalities (a CEO earns 700 times more than a basic wage employee), the prisons are full of (overwhelmingly) blacks, choke-full of more prisoners than any other country on the planet, even China and its 1.3 billion inhabitants; black neighborhoods sometimes erupt into violence, as they did after the assassination of Martin Luther King, the GOP convention of 1968 and the assassination of RFK, the Rodney King Riots of 1990 ..etc. These all resulted in a lot of property destruction, fires, and quite a few deaths.
The National Firearms Act (1934), which restricted access to certain types of guns and equipment and levied a hefty tax and registration system; the Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act (1968), which restricted interstate trade of certain guns, mandated a minimum age to own handguns, and established a national gun licensing system; the Gun Control Act (1968), which restricted ownership of any gun by certain persons, established the FFL system, restricted importation of various guns, and created marking requirements;
Violence going the other direction tends to be more "effective"... From the small scale (the firebombing of the MOVE9) to, of course, the bigger scale Operation Vigilant Warrior in 2001 and its 3'000 direct deaths.
USA, rural regions
Contrarily to the metropoles and densely populated eastern third of the US, the states centered around the "American Redoubt" have high(er) levels of marksmanship. One has to be careful to exclude cities from this picture, even cities located in so-called "red states", to draw a picture that makes sense. For instance the recent massacre in Aurora, CO movie theater occured in part because that theater had a "gun free zone" placard. Clearly this is opposite from rural values, the US countryside areas are much closer to the "marksmanship" ideal. One should also be careful not just in spatial but also temporal delimitation; things have been trending downwards for decades. For instance forceful restablishment of popular vote confiscated by a corrupt Sheriff, as occured in wake of World War 2 (The battle of Athens) would be unimaginable today. With that said, that descent was not a scary free-fall like in e.g. the United Kingdom, these regions remain a bastion of riflemen like few other places in the world, somewhat free of the Crécy-Agincourt Syndrom (again -- if you exclude cities from the picture).
This makes them no Switzerland however, for complex reasons that involve their having remained associated to the hoplophobic remainder of the USA, and their being associated to the US (and Wall Street's) "wealth pump" system, whereby 300 million americans -- 5% of humanity -- receives 25% of the world's oil and 30% of its natural resources.
Indeed rural population provided and continues to provide the bulk of the personel used for Wall Street's anti-communist wars (Korea, Vietnam ...), Wall Street's Oil Endgame wars, Wall Street's gang wars (Afghanistan, a few SpecOps in Colombia in the 90s ...) and welfare for the Wall Street military-industrial complex (pretty much "all of the above" wars).
Though there are exceptions, very few people follow the precept that "people should no be afraid of their governement, governments should be afraid of their people". In fact, most shy away from these words:
A free people ought not only to be armed and disciplined, but they should have sufficient arms and ammunition to maintain a status of independence from any who might attempt to abuse them, which would include their own government.And in fact, far from focusing on the more noble traits of the Founding Fathers, like increasing freedom, they focus on decreasing freedom for others (as if it was a zero-sum game where more freedom for others is thievery against their own freedom): mysoginism (just like women were barred from voting), racism and minority-ism(!) against arabs and blacks (just like the Founding Fathers were slave-owners)...
-- George Washington
There are other ways that "divide & conquer" is alive and well in the Land of the Brave... In addition to dividing people on their freedoms, they are divided on their access to the wealth pump. This shows up in e.g. the acronym FSA ("Free Shit Army") being bandied around. What does this boil down too ? Considering where the "free shit" comes from, it boils down to this: being disgruntled at the "share of the loot". Those who spilled their blood in resource-rich countries around the world see the lion's share going to Wall Street, a small share going to "blue states" who didn't participate (as much) in the blood-spilling, and a trickle of the loot go to those who should actually be credited for the it, the soldiers and veterans.
Those who sabotage the freedom of others, will one day see their freedom sabotaged as well. Indeed since 2001 they are at the "eating the chosen people" stage, with TSA gropping men and women before boarding flights, the "PATRIOT" act, indefinite detention of americans deemed "enemy combattants", the death-sentence-by-drone without trial nor jury and so on and so forth.
All in all, the rural US could be compared to ancient Rome and its legions -- except for the obesity and gropping: it presents the paradox of an armed citizenry that submits to its ruler's calls for spilling blood in foreign lands... Because it used to be a profitable endeavour. Especially since the draft ended and the army became all-volunteer, they do so willingly and enthusiasticaly -- at least in the initial stages of each war, though the patriotism tends to wear off from troops with their "ass in the grass" and generally becomes the exclusive province of armchair warriors and chickenhawks after each war drags on with no clear objective... Until the old, abused soldiers retire and the next war is started with young new soldiers barely old enough to vote or get a driving license or understand geopolitics and Wall Street, and thus -- rince and repeat. This continued submissiveness gets them the disdain of people they submit to; e.g. George W. Bush dubbed enlisted men "O.F.U." ("One Fodder Unit"), Genocide Henry called them "pawns" and so on.
It would seem this cycle can continue indefinitely as no generation learns from the previous ones... Except we are reaching the endgame now; with Peak Oil behind us (2006), the US are entering uncharted waters, just like other oil-based industrial countries.
USA-WallStreet, Cold War against "communism"
The anti-communism story starts of course soon after "Red October" 1917 but gets interesting only in the 30s. As in France, there is a coup d'état attempt, somewhat less half-baked: the Business Plot aimed at emulating the italian brown shirts' show of force, launching a mass march against the Capitol. Like in France, the coup failed, except it failed... even before starting. The Wall Street planners made the mistake of asking Smedley Butler to lead the coup. Butler had a spine and an aversion for corporatism/fascism (unlike modern soldiers who don't question things much), and went in front of Congress to spill the beans. Despite his testimony, no one in Wall Street did time.
To the contrary, they went to "Plan B", investing in fascist Italy, in Franquiste Spain, and investing heavily in Nazi Germany. These investments allowed the Axis powers to go to war against the USSR, killing 20 millions, they also entailed millions of victims in western and central europe, and of course... sending some US G.I.s who helped mop up the mess in the end, with a couple hundred thousands KIA added to the body count. Again, the "Treading with the enemy act" could have stopped Wall Street in its tracks... But the leading force against it stopped abruptly: after FDR's passing away in 1945, Truman, a rabid anti-communist, took over and reverted as much as he could. Including any sue-ing of the Wall Street tycoons. Far from doing time for having invested in the death camps and the weaponry that killed 100'000+ GIs, the robber barons got away scott free and made handsome profits after Truman gave them back their money. That's how e.g. the Bush family built a political dynasty that would result in a several governors, 1 senator, 1 vice-presidency and 3 presidential terms.
These days, Wall Street no longer needs to "overthrow" the government, they OWN the government.
That translates to a bloody fallout for the rest of the world, especially south america and the middle east, as described elsewhere in this page.
USA-WallStreet, war "against" drugs
The war "on" drugs (a replay of the alcohol Prohibition in the 1930s) served as a useful justification for interventionism, especially in the 1989-2001 decade between the Cold War and the Oil endgame. But one should not forget that even when outside of the spotlight it has always been, and remains, there -- an important revenue stream for Wall Street.
Indeed a trend emerges whereever you look: the uncle sam kingpin strongly supports those drug lords (e.g. Uribe in Colombia, the Northern Alliance in Afghanistan) who invest their drug money in US banks and send cocaine/heroine to those deemed "useless eaters", black neighborhoods in US cities, Russian populace and others; and said kingpin even more strongly opposes those who try to eradicate drugs (e.g. the 2000-era Talebans) or who try to divert drug profits for their own cause (post-invasion Talebans, the FARC-EP in Colombia ..etc).
USA (and the UK, Australia..), war "against" terrorism and Al-(Cia)da
Also known as the Oil Endgame. It's easy to forget it will all end like this...
It's also easy to forget how it all began. Some groundwork was laid in the 1980s as Jimmy Carter (then-spokeperson for Wall Street aka POTUS) and his NSA Zbigniew Brjzezinsky devised a plan to fund, train and finance Al-Qaeda mudjahideens; the immediate goal then was not yet the oil endgame (Peak Oil arrived more than a couple decades later), but rather to deal a blow to the USSR. The next POTUS, Ronald Reagan, would even call the muj "freedom fighters" and "the moral equivalent of our Founding Fathers" (despite cynic's opinions, the Founding Fathers were neither as mysgonistic as the Talebans, nor were they drug dealers *g*). It followed a now-familiar script: as occured later in Yougoslavia in the 1990s and in Syria in the 2010s, the US-backed gangs could not be dealt with only by the police forces and drew a military response, entering a spiral of escalation, aiming at destabilising or toppling the targetted society... to its very core. Afghanistan went from a modern country with women doctors and women ministers to the current medieval hell-hole. Yougoslavia erupted in an orgy of ethnic cleansing and retribution. The jury is still out on Syria. As to Lybia, jihadists overthrew Kadhaffi and like in Syria, are still considered the "good" Al-Qaeda. No doubt that could change in the future, if/when time comes to invade.
Which is what occured in 2001 Afghanistan. During the Taleban-US negociations that went down in Texas in August 2001, the Talebans were promised a "carpet of gold" or "carpet-bombing" depending on how amenable they were to compromise on a variety of topics, including opium, pipelines building and revenues. They probably didn't compromise enough, since after the September False Flag (and October Anthrax letters from the USAMRIID in Fort Detrick) they became "bad" jihadists in need of an overthrow.
And the rest is... history in the making. Ten years later the US' hold on oil producing countries is shaky, and so far the Oil Endgame is a net loss in terms of supply: the US' share of global oil supply went down from 20+ Mb/d to 18 Mb/d and counting, whilst Chindia's share is sky-rocketing. The 2002 coup d'état in Venezuela -- a big player in terms of reserves -- was a failure, with the armed populace chasing away the SOA-schooled coupsters and reinstating Chavez in less than 48 hours. Other potential targets have learned (some of) the lessons and put themselves on more defensive footings, especially after seeing what happened to Irak, which was sent back to the (radioactive) stone age after getting rid of its most potents weapon systems, trying to accomodate the US, and accepting its conditions -- only to be invaded anyway.
The combination of decreased share of the world's oil and the heavy price paid in "blood and treasure" to just barely moderate that decrease, and the fact that said price is paid by enlisted troops, which represent only a small percentage of the US population, result in rising discontent. Even without understanding the first thing about Wall Street's phony war "on" drugs or the war "against" terrorism, US consumers and US citizens and US libertarians alike smell that "something's not right".
How this all ends up, is difficult to say. In the long term, of course, it will be a world without oil. But how do we get from here to there; will there be another False Flag, e.g. a Gulf of Tonkin redux against Iran? Or something bigger, like a war with China? After all, there is a democrat in the White House currently. As much as WallStreet/Republicans tend to get all the blame for militarism, the truth is -- WallStreet/Democrat wars have been bigger, and often against chinese proxies: Korea, Vietnam were huge, compared to Bush Senior's puny Gulf War 1 and Reagan's lame Iran-Contra-Gate drug-smuggling-plus-death-squads operation. Or maybe the US ruling class will understand all the low-hanging apples have been picked already and there's no push-over oil producing country left to invade any more, and there will be no external false flag or war, but an intensification of the "war at home", demonization of various components of the Middle Class so that it gives up expecting/hoping for more of the loot? Between rising expectations and decreasing oil supply, something has to give. All the options are ugly... which is what happens when you run straight-on into overshoot.
One thing's for sure. We're living in "interesting" times... In the chinese sense of the word.
The resolutions, 1918; the decree, July 12, 1920; Art. 59 & 182, Pen. code, 1926, all worked together to ban possession of firearms, enacting severe penalties for "offenders".
Stalin's USSR accelerates gun confiscation, resulting in horrific vulnerability of the population to both internal and external aggression, in line with the C.A. Syndrom: 20 million soviets are killed by nazi Germany, and probably as many killed in Ukraine and Russia during the purges that preceded and followed the war.
Modern day Russia only allows possession of a "rougio" (shotgun) but "vintovki" (rifles) are still banned from civilian ownership. The Chernobyl catastrophe in 1986 was the most traumatic industrial event to date, until being equalled (some say superceded) by an equally hierarchically rigid country, Japan, at Fukushima.
India is often cited as a poster-child shining example of a bloodless revolution, mistakenly leading people to believe the same can apply to their situation. Ghandi did not despise firearms despite claims to the contrary by those who didn't read his books... to the contrary he wrote:
Among the many misdeeds of the British rule in India, history will look upon the Act depriving a whole nation of arms, as the blackest.and
-- Ghandi (autobiography, p. 446)
I do believe that where there is only a choice between cowardice and violence I would advise violence. (..) Hence also do I advocate training in arms for those who believe in the method of violence. I would rather have India resort to arms in order to defend her honor than that she should in a cowardly manner become or remain a helpless witness to her own dishonor.As a matter of fact, post-independance India was anything but pacific, with huge ethnic (or rather, religious) cleansing against muslims and bloodbaths against what was to become inhabitants of Pakistan. In the 2000s, hundreds of muslim residents were massacred and burned alive by Indian mobs, none of which needed firearms to commit these atrocities. On a larger scale, the "world's biggest democracy" is in cahoots with western corporations, destroying its agriculture, leading to mass peasant suicides, and accounts for many of the world's 900 million malnourished people. As often the case in C.A. Syndrom countries, demography is a run-away basket case.
-- Ghandi (Doctrine of the Sword)
Unsurprisingly, the only ones in the lot who behave anything else than a melanoma are the Naxalite rebels. Though those readers who are as allergic to Maoism as they are to the C.A. Syndrom will not rejoice that much... Rock, meet hard-place.
Japan: all your atoms belong to us
The japanese archipelago is a poster child if there ever was, for the Crécy-Agincourt Syndrom. "Gun control" is actually "Weapon control" for them and dates back to centuries of forbidden ownership of basic weapons, even blades, for those not part of the Samurai class. So much so that the Japanese had to pioneer "karate" (empty-hand) fighting and other weapon-less forms of "defense". The shintoist religion regards the Emperor as god-like, and few nations on the planet have such high regard for "authority" and blindly following orders.
The results are in proportion to that strong hierarchy, with six centuries of civil wars interrupted only very shortly by the peaceful and ecological "Edo" period... and things picking up to a screaming crescendo with the advent of the Oil Age: butchers of Korea, of China (massacre of Nankin ..etc), of Mongolia (with the infamous "Unit 731"), victims at Hiroshima and Nagasaki... A less rigid populace might have learned a lesson or two here... especially as far as nuclear physics are concerned. Yet the opposite happened, as they let corruption take over as never before in their history and set themselves up for unprecedented suffering in the years to come. They let corrupt megacorporations construct faulty-designed nuclear plants, yakuzas mafias handle them, and located them on tusnami- and earthquake-prone spots of all places. The only surprise with Fukushima Daichi is that it took decades for it to happen, after many close calls and "accidents" in the previous years.
Yes, a sizeable minority of Japanese have their mind in the right place... One just has to watch "Mononoke Hime" and other masterpieces advocating a return to a more natural life to be convinced of it. But the C.A. Syndrom overrules them. Even if they amount in the hundreds of thousands, they still account for almost zero, disarmed as they are. Only rifle-carrying personel counts, that's how it is.
Chinese civilian access to rifles (much less marksmanship) is similar to Japan's, that is to say, zero. This historically has led to the same effects: development of "martial arts" as an (ineffective) replacement, consistently placing the populace in the "victim" category.
The Art. 205, Crim. Code, 1914; Art. 186-87, Crim. Code, 1935 restricted then banned private ownership of firearms, and it was downhill ever since. From being barely "dominated" by foreigners, the populace became the targets of epic megadeaths at the hand of the Japanese empire and from their own leaders, Mao included.
You'd almost forget that the current situation, if (for now) less violent, is on track for some very bad juju to be sure.
Fidel Castro's life offers a unique opportunity to study two completely different approaches to revolution as an armed conflict. His first attempt at seizing power was a raid, a frontal attack on the Moncada Barracks, whose outcome was a complete failure; most involved were either killed or (like Castro himself) captured. Oddly, he was then freed and exiled a few years later, giving him a chance to try again -- and that's where things get interesting.
His second attempt was completely opposite, as he and his "barbudos" then tried defensive tactics. Okay -- his landfall and the next few days were somewhat "offensive" to be sure, being hunted down by Batista's army, leading again to horrific losses as his personel went down from 150 to just 20 men. But then they were able to take cover in dense forrest and switch to defensive tactics, mainly ambushes. Relying more on patience (indeed it would take all of the next three years to conquer Cuba), remaining hidden from big enemy units and engaging only units small enough to overrun (meaning the castrists could do "battlefield recovery" and recover more ammunition than they expended at each engagement), allowed Castro and his partisans to survive and thrive. The recovered rifles also meant that the locals could be armed -- many joined the castrists daily, the group's strength growing from 20 personel to 1500 in under a year. Likely, their marksmanship was state of the art: they reportedly engaged targets at 1000 yards with scoped rifles, a distance that is still highly respectable even today.
When a "vanguard" of people 'saves' a population, the benevolent white knights generally turn on their population -- the rule of the game is "Meet the new boss, same as the old boss". But look where these guys were coming from: the island was conquered by dozens of thousands of "barbudos", only 20 of which were the original "vanguard" offloaded from the Granma ship. The island had not been a mere spectator to its liberation. It became a bona fide actor when (part of) the population and the 'vanguard' fusioned together... The apparent absence of a Crécy-Agincourt Syndrom showed up in later public declarations by e.g. Che Guevara, to the effect that,
"Anticipating an invasion, Che Guevara stressed the importance of an armed civilian populace, stating "all the Cuban people must become a guerrilla army, each and every Cuban must learn to [..] use firearms in defense of the nation."The results were fairly stellar. The Bay of Pigs invasion attempt was crushed in a couple of days, with most of the CIA spooks-soldiers killed or captured. In the coming decade Cuban military prowess grew enough that they were able to project force. For instance when South Africa supported an insurgency (the UNITA) in Angola trying to replace the left-leaning regime there with an Apartheid regime modelled after its own, dozens of thousands of Cuban soldiers were sent to help, successfully repelling the invasion. Alas, to borrow from the famous "fishing" saying... If you defend a man, he will be safe only for a day.. If you teach a man to defend himself he will be safe for the rest of his life. This, in effect, is what happened, as Angola went into the ditch a few years after the Cubans headed home.
Anyhow the Cubans themselves have been completely shielded form Uncle Sam's death squads and Pinochet's, or even low-intensity eradication as endured by the people of Haiti, an island with similar climate to Cuba's but with almost no rifles, let alone marksmanship.
If a path to the better there be, it begins with a full look at the worst.Firearms (and hence also marksmanship) is subject to insane fees in Mexico. In fact the country is a basket-case of social darwinism run amok, where the rich appropriate not only water and food security but even the most foundational rights of all -- access to defensive implements -- by imposing close to $10'000 gun permit fees to the population, the majority of which lives hand-to-mouth.
-- Thomas Hardy
As often in C.A. Syndrom basket cases, the violence takes place not so much from the statists but especially from local mafias. Mexico has bad geographical luck, being on a bottleneck landpath for exporting Colombian cocaine from its US-backed producers to its US consumers, and harbors the most violent drug cartels in the world.
If you thought Uncle Sam's death squads had violence down to an art and could not be beat, watch what Uncle Sam's drug carriers can do to a young child whose dad got in their way. Do NOT watch this after lunch, or risk throwing it all up. This is what happens to vulnerable people. Not a pretty picture but you have to realize what the current situation is before thinking of improving it.
The story is well-known. After winning the presidential race in 1971, socialist leader Salvator Allende was congratulated by Fidel Castro, who offered him an AKM as a gift with these words -- "congratulation comrade for your sucess; but if you want to defend your revolution you will need this". Allende politely smiled but ignored the advice.
Two years later, on 9/11 1973 he was toppled in a coup led by General Pinochet, and killed in the presidential palace. The population -- especially 'leftists' or those suspected of being so -- joined the already swelled ranks of victims the world over; 3'000 were outright killed, 10'000 were "disappeared", some of their bodies later washed upon Panamean shores, 100'000 went into exile. The country joined Plan Condor.
Similar story with the advent of the "dictatorship of the colonels" in Argentina, which also joined Operation Condor.
What was that? Operation Condor was a setup for police-states coordination, allowing Chilli, Argentine ..etc to share information on their "dissidents" to allow tracking them down even if they crossed a border. After these fathers and mothers met their death, their infants, if any, were given to child-less junta couples to rise as their own. That was the second part of Operation Condor.
As in Franco's spain, the population had nowhere to run, nobody to turn to, and remained under dictatorship for decades. As to the kidnapped infants, their parents were dead. Some mistakes are less forgiving than others. Vulnerability is one of those.
As explained by Major General Smedley Butler in his "War is a Racket" speech, already in the early 20th century the USMC made impressive body counts among the helpless/vulnerable people of (colonial) Haiti, (colonial) Cuba, Central America, the Dominican Republic, and as far as China. All to allow US corporations to thrive, as well as Wall Street companies invested in oil or sugar, banks, and on and on: National City Bank, Brown Brothers, Standard Oil ..etc ..etc.
In the second half of the century, latin america became the business of the SOA (School of America, a US "school" with peculiar "students": there, latin personel friendly to US interests was/is taught how to overthrow a democracy, torture, disappear "dissidents" ..etc). Guatemala is witness to the lethal results of gun control with its 100'000 deaths between 1960 and 1981, coming on the heels of gun-grabbing Decree 36, Nov 25 -- Act of 1932; Decree 386, 1947; Decree 283, 1964... Nicaragua and its 10'000 killed by the Contras in the most horrific manners, is another place where helpless peasants became killed and dismembered (not necessarily in that order) peasants.
Former CIA Chief of Station J. Stockwell estimated at the end of the Cold War,
Coming to grips with these U.S./CIA activities in broad numbers and figuring out how many people have been killed in the jungles of Laos or the hills of Nicaragua is very difficult. But, adding them up as best we can, we come up with a figure of six million people killed -- and this is a minimum figure.As bad as that sounds, though, that was the good old times ("nothing personal/serious, it's just business") of economic growth. Now that Peak Oil is past us (2006 for crude+condensates, 2008 for all-liquids), the oil Endgame is shaping up to be some first-class unpleasantness. There are already hints of the S.O.A. teachings being ready to be put to use against first-world people... including the US "chosen people".
Narco-State "Cocaine": Colombia
Colombia produces 90% of the world's cocaine. World drug money, cocaine included, amounts to $600 billion a year. The official story is that all of that money flows to drug cartels. One gotta wonder why they don't just purchase the planet country by country, if they earn $6 trillion per decade, but anyway that's how the mainstream story goes.
Nothing shakes people out of that 'consensual trance' or makes them lose faith in that official theory. Not even when holes the size of a cargo ship -- litterally -- are blown through it: this occured in the 1990s when Colombian President Uribe's right-hand man was caught smuggling cocaine precursors by the boat-load. Or when it was revealed that Uribe, this darling of the US, Uncle Sam's protégé, had his presidency race financed by drug lord Diego Murillo; and that he was the driving force behind the creation of the AUC death squads. Or when narco-news (again) broke the story on the Banamex bank knowingly laundering drug money.
An alternate mainstream media story goes, those $600 billion a year in fact go to this double-plus evil group of evil rebels called the FARC-EP. The FARC-EP exist since 1964, so again one wonders how come they still live in the jungle, use latrines, eat food cold from "cold camps" out of fear of aerial detection, if they make anywhere near that kind of money. So instead of this official story, I'll take the non-officially-approved figure any day of the week; that is, the FARC owning ca. 2% of the coca trade -- not of the value-added processed cocaine, the coca leaf trade. That perspective puts the statists in the spot-lights, but at least it feels reality-based, for a change: the resultant profits would amount to millions of dollars a year, which is congruent with the logistics of feeding, arming and paying 10'000 volunteer fighters. As to the $600-minus billions, they go to those who already run the world, for whom it's pocket change. QED.
Talking of which, the self-confidence of the statists is such, that one iconic capitalist, the president of the New York Stock Exchange, found it perfectly normal to meet the head of the FARC-EP in the jungle in 1999 as if he was going to Mc Donald's to order a Big Mac. When back to the US and asked by journalists what the hell he was doing in the jungle meetings marxist rebels engaged in war against a US ally, he said he went there to invite them to visit the NYSE. Some believe that was an unimaginative lie, and he was actually there to negociate their investing their 2% of the cocaine trade in US banks, so as to join the other 98%. I think maybe, perhaps, he might have been lying too.
Getting back to the topic at hand, vulnerability and marksmanship. There is a clear divide between vulnerable people and marks(wo)men. Case in point -- the Colombian countryside. You may live in a "peace" community and be decapitated with a chainsaw together with your children... Or you may be part of a self-defense community or of the FARC-EP (which is racially diverse and thirty percent female, which eases their being marxist quite a bit!) or the ELN, and actually inflict kills on the death squads, rather than be tortured and killed by them.
To sum it up with a soundbite, a guerilla is a pacifist whose family was raped and killed. I rest my case.
The east mediterranean side of the MENA region has a complex post-war history, but on the whole it simply illustrates the overaching need to not be vulnerable, the paramount requirement of civilian marksmanship as a prerequisite for stability and population self-protection. Be it Lebanon, which attempted to become the "Middle east's Switzerland" by doing things in the wrong order (get riches first, marksmanship later) and got sent back to the stone age for it by Israel... or the Syrian society which, judging by the mass massacres of civilians by jihadists, has very few rifles in civilians hands and expects the armed forces to by everywhere all the time to protect the people, and pays the price of country disintegration for it... In these and many other cases (Sabra and Shatila, the Nabka ..etc ..etc) the same causes lead to the same effects, as if history was hammering lessons down humanity's throat again and again and again: lack of marksmanship kills. Absolute lack of marksmanship kills absolutely.
One exception to this depressing landscape is the Lebanese shi'ia group, Hezbollah, that's been a rising Lebanese power for the last couple decades or more. This is as close as they have come to "widespread" marksmanship... which means there's still a lot of ground to cover (from 30'000 militia-men to the whole population) but that's a good start, and it showed in the 2006 Lebanon-Israel war, where the former made a black eye on the latter, deterring any new attack ever since.
"Arab Spring" countries: Tunisia, Lybia, Egypt...
Those who wondered how things could be worse than with US client-state dictatorships, got their answer in the last two years. US- (and Europe-) backed radical islam and the Shariah is rising in all the "arab spring" countries, with women rights in full retreat (Egypt is even talking of excision again). The truth, no matter how little people want to hear it, is that extending the Saudi Arabia model to the MENA region benefits none of the concerned countries; this is true also in those of the countries where change was obtained, not by armed jihadists but "pacific" demonstrations: nobody was "victorious" in those instances since nothing was obtained by force, but only by begging and by "pressure". The dictators left not at gunpoint, but on their own accord, when their police forces started killing too many protesters. It is said that revolution obtained by force by a small fraction of the population (e.g. a 'vanguard') for the "benefit" of all, in fact benefits nobody. What then, should one say about a so-called revolution which was not obtained by any external force at all, but (temporarily) granted by the dictator ?
Egypt, especially, is one of the biggest food "basket cases" on the planet (importing 90% of its food), and should be watched closely in the future, as noted by Piero San Giorgio and others. With its massive population overshoot there are no limits (or rather, pretty high limits) on what can happen with it.
Narco-State "Heroin": Afghanistan
Afghanistan is to opium poppy/heroin what Colombia is to the coca leaf/cocaine. It produces almost as high a percentage of the world's opium as Colombia does with cocaine. No wonder it's at the top of the hit list of Uncle Sam's big "eye in the sky".
The Afghan's curse is their poor marksmanship. Some of it is due to their poor eye-sight and uncorrected myopia. Some of it is just plain Illiterate Peasant Syndrom. True, there are reports of Afghan locals successfully engaging US personnel at mid-range and escaping unmolested, but they are far and few inbetween. The Talebans still resort to suicider bombers and suicide infantry raids for their more spectacular attacks. The planning and (especially) execution of their ambushes against US soldiers is often sub-par to say the least -- even when e.g. outnumbering an isolated squad and in an overhwelmingly favorable setting it can take hours to gun them down (see Marcus Lutrell, "Lone Survivor").
The combination of poor marksmanship and deadly determination from Uncle Sam to keep his "goose that lays the golden (opium) eggs" is deadly for the Afghanese, with a reported death toll even higher than the sky-high Iraki one in numbers, which is even more impressive if calculated in percentage. They are still on their way to shake off the imperial stormtroopers like they did to the British empire and the Soviet empire, but it will have cost them dearly, even worse than it cost the Vietnamese to keep free (which is saying something, given the epic death count in Vietnam). Perhaps if the "mujahideens" were not so primitively mysoginistic their society would have fared better...
Iran, from democracy to police state to theocracy
The overthrow of premier Mossadegh during Operation Ajax, a joint british/US operation, is well known and needs not recounting here. What mandates analysis, as always, is the way vulnerability influences people' lives. During the Shah's police state years, the SAVAK secret police was trained by the CIA and tortured people with "cattle prods" or by pulling nails. Without civilian marksmanship, the state was all-powerful and free to do whatever it wanted to do... Until enough people were fed up enough in a sustained enough timeframe to defy the dictatorship even if meant risking their life to do so (just how much was "enough" ? well, a lot -- everything's more difficult and requires much bigger numbers when people are completely naked and vulnerable). The ayatollah years saw a transition from torture to mysoginistic theocratic rule, which probably felt like something of an improvement to those whose nails were previously pulled.
During the Iran-Irak, the initial regime "tactic" was sending human wave after human wave of personnel to be machine-gunned by Iraki MG nests and gased in their trenches. This worked to some extent as Irak was put in a difficult spot, but the price to pay was taking a heavy toll. Long story short, the Iranian society has evolved a bit (heck they're even experiencing a timely demographic transition just now) and individual marksmanship seems to be valued more in their armed forces. In fact if the performance against Israel of the Iranian protégés -- the Hezbollah -- is any indication, marksmanship is prioritized high by Iranian leadership. Not to mention that in an hypothetical confrontation with Uncle Sam, even before resorting to 4th generation warfare the Iranians will be able to inflict quite a few "high-tech" blows and probably have aces up their sleeve, as their recent hacking/hijacking of a high-tech US drone proved.
Irak, gulf war(s)
The media has been comparing the death tolls in Mexico and war-torn Irak in the last few years. Beyond the raw similarities (beheaded men here, beheaded men there, 30'000 killed/year here, 50'000 killed/year there) it makes sense to some extent, because both are/were targetted with high determination for a "Prize".. In Irak's case the Prize is their oil reserves rather than geographical bad luck.
On the other hand the comparison is sheer nonsense for the longterm view: Irak has been sprinkled with DU235. It's hard to compare anything with that.
As recounted by numerous US 'advisors' while providing marksmanship training to the Iraki police, the typical Iraki refuses to aim his AKM rifle, claiming "I don't need to aim, Allah will guide my bullets". In 2003 and 2004 there were a few iraki snipers of varying skills... A few using Tabuks (scoped AKMs) for, at most, 200 m. urban engagements. Fewer still using SVD Dragunovs. The vast majority behaved like that infamous Gulf-War-1 era Iraki reinforced company that was annihilated by three (3) SOCOM operators using nothing more than .223 rifles firing (then-special) rounds loaded with 77 grains bullets. To be fair, there are other factors at play. The terrain, for one: it is extremely unfavorable for defenders; in fact it is close to ideal (though not perfect -- sand storms take a toll on US gear) for the airland war model used by Uncle Sam, with thermal sights and armor supplemented by A-10 Warthogs.
Irak is great for one thing though -- exposing the difference between rifle ownership and rifle marksmanship. Rifle ownership is what they have in irak. When faced with actual rifle marksmanship (and DU235-firing tanks and planes) the became worse than victims or martyrs. They became a Depleted Uranium wasteland.
There's no worst blindness, the saying goes, as that of the man who does not want to see. Indeed the hoplophobic types, if they glance at this page at all, will likely not change their mind. They will brush off the above examples as speculation, or "exceptions to the rule" or some such ahistorical views, and go on with their merry hoplophobic/consumerist/cruise-missile-liberal lives... until they meet their fate.
To those who have a head to run the body though, the options are clear.
With your bare hands (or with a rifle but no marksmanship, which amounts to about the same) you are just a potential victim a la Argentine; or a low-tech mass-murderer a la Rwanda.
With a rifle and rifle marksmanship and the will to use it, things change drastically. Yes, it can be used for offensive purposes a la high-tech massacre of Irak -- that is, if the guys in front of you are defenseless; if they are marksmen you won't be able to do a thing, since equally distributed marksmanship is a defensive tool, not an offensive tool. Indeed high-tech wet work is not the remarkable aspect of marksmanship. The remarkable aspect of rifle marksmanship is that it allows for assymetric defense. That is to say, successful defense against vastly superior attacking forces.
There is no precedent for that in human history. Throughout history successful defense required being at least as numerous as the aggressors attacking you, or having superior skills (at sword handling ...etc) or advantageous terrain or a combination thereof... There was no intrinsic advantage to the defender, and in fact there was more an intrinsic advantage to the attacker, who benefited from surprise... With rifles, there is an intrinsic advantage to being entrenched (e.g. in or near the village you and your family live in) and an instrinsic DISadvantage to being on the move (to e.g. attack a foreign village), out in the open (you DO have clear fields of fire around your village, don't you?) and so on. So much so that you may be outnumbered by the attackers (in, say a 3-to-1 or sometimes 10-to-1 or more ratio), have slightly less marksmanship than the attackers, and still prevail while sustaining much fewer injuries and victims than the attackers.
Between the pressure exercised on vulnerable people (be they Mexican kids or Argentine moms), and the ease with which vulnerability can be cured (just a few days of training on a 1 or 2 MOA capable rifle makes for a great foundation already), anyone with cognitive capabilites beyond that of an ostrich and not blinded by emotional bias can figure it out for themselves. Get a rifle, get good with it, then train your husband/wife/teenage kids to be good with it then spread the word to those who will listen. That's how you end up living in a Swiss-like settings instead of an Haitian hell-hole.
[Go get that rifle and train with it, that's the basic message Oslik gives us. Whether or not you agree with his assumptions on the way the world goes round, you deserve to survive ! You may want to read the last article @ Modern Survival Blog : The attempt to disarm the American]