All posts tagged Military


By Ken Jorgustin – Modern Survival Blog

There are many uses for a night vision device (NVD) including that of the military, law enforcement, security, surveillance, hunting, wildlife observation, navigation, hidden-object detection, entertainment, and more.

Although a night vision device can be an expensive addition to one’s preparedness ‘toolkit’, it could prove itself invaluable under some circumstances.

Here’s information on how night vision devices work, the differences in technology of the various generations (GEN-0,1,2,3,4…), and a good resource for getting yourself one…

Continue reading at Modern Survival Blog: Night Vision Device



By Pat Henry – The Prepper Journal

The Sheepdog concept has been around in its modern form since 2002 from Dave Grossman’s book, On Killing. He later expanded on this concept in his follow-up book, On Combat. I own and still am working through both of these books and highly recommend them as sources of training material for those of us who have never killed or seen combat, but can anticipate the value in some knowledge and lessons from a man who trains our military, police and special forces.

Many of us identify with the term Sheepdog and there are many different interest groups who proudly consider themselves members of this affiliation. The groups range from proponents of self-defense, preparedness, military, law enforcement and defenders of the 2nd Amendment. All will proudly ascribe to Mr. Grossman’s philosophy and picture ourselves standing in the breach whenever we are called.

To give you a concise explanation of this concept, here is an excerpt from the man himself. This is taken from Mr. Grossman’s site, Killogy Research Group.

One Vietnam veteran, an old retired colonel, once said this to me: “Most of the people in our society are sheep. They are kind, gentle, productive creatures who can only hurt one another by accident.” This is true. Remember, the murder rate is six per 100,000 per year, and the aggravated assault rate is four per 1,000 per year. What this means is that the vast majority of Americans are not inclined to hurt one another.

Some estimates say that two million Americans are victims of violent crimes every year, a tragic, staggering number, perhaps an all-time record rate of violent crime. But there are almost 300 million Americans, which means that the odds of being a victim of violent crime is considerably less than one in a hundred on any given year. Furthermore, since many violent crimes are committed by repeat offenders, the actual number of violent citizens is considerably less than two million.

Thus there is a paradox, and we must grasp both ends of the situation: We may well be in the most violent times in history, but violence is still remarkably rare. This is because most citizens are kind, decent people who are not capable of hurting each other, except by accident or under extreme provocation. They are sheep.

I mean nothing negative by calling them sheep. To me it is like the pretty, blue robin’s egg. Inside it is soft and gooey but someday it will grow into something wonderful. But the egg cannot survive without its hard blue shell. Police officers, soldiers and other warriors are like that shell, and someday the civilization they protect will grow into something wonderful. For now, though, they need warriors to protect them from the predators.

“Then there are the wolves,” the old war veteran said, “and the wolves feed on the sheep without mercy.” Do you believe there are wolves out there who will feed on the flock without mercy? You better believe it. There are evil men in this world and they are capable of evil deeds. The moment you forget that or pretend it is not so, you become a sheep. There is no safety in denial.

“Then there are sheepdogs,” he went on, “and I’m a sheepdog. I live to protect the flock and confront the wolf.” Or, as a sign in one California law enforcement agency put it, “We intimidate those who intimidate others.”

If you have no capacity for violence then you are a healthy productive citizen: a sheep. If you have a capacity for violence and no empathy for your fellow citizens, then you have defined an aggressive sociopath–a wolf. But what if you have a capacity for violence, and a deep love for your fellow citizens? Then you are a sheepdog, a warrior, someone who is walking the hero’s path. Someone who can walk into the heart of darkness, into the universal human phobia, and walk out unscathed.

Excellent source of information on the mental, physiological and psychological factors in combat.

Do you believe you are a sheepdog?

Like I mentioned above, many of us identify with that symbolism. We have normal day-to-day lives but feel in our bones that if called upon, we would act in defense of our fellow citizens. We would come to protect the “sheep” that are the rest of the citizens who either would not or could not come to their own aid or rise to the aid of others. We can rationalize, at least outwardly the use of violence to defend someone in dire circumstances and use that rationalization to form our opinions on not only day-to-day interactions we may witness, but our overall guiding philosophy. This is one reason why so many of us carry concealed firearms.

This act of helping in that way is comforting to me on many levels. I feel on a gut level that type of behavior, of shared responsibility to our fellow-man, is what we are all called to do if we have that capacity in us. It is this concept of protecting people, in some measure that shaped my decision to join the Army as a young man. I signed up for the express purpose of defending my country even though I was never afforded the ability to do so in an overt way. My desire was not to be considered some type of hero for my service. I didn’t want any credit or special treatment for my choice, but I was ready if needed. Apparently, God had other plans for me.

The internet is filled with images and memes describing Sheepdogs and almost always these are reserved for the most outwardly obvious examples in our society. The soldiers we send to foreign countries and the law enforcement officers that protect our streets back home but these men and women only make up a small percentage of the total number who consider themselves sheepdogs. Millions more average every day citizens will say they are ready to do what is necessary and I wonder if this Sheepdog term isn’t misunderstood or is becoming trivialized to those whose job is not dealing with crime or war every day.

What happens if the sheep decide to gang up on the Sheepdogs?

It is very easy for me to say I am a sheepdog and envision how I will honorably try to defend someone when a wolf comes down the street. That is the easy part of calling yourself a sheepdog. If you are never called to action, who could argue with you? But what happens when the sheep decide they want to take the teeth away from those who would be their protectors at least in our minds? We sit here in front of our computers and in online forums railing at the politicians who seem intent on taking our means of defense away, but what about all of the people, not elected? What do you say to them?

I think that the traits and actions of a true sheepdog go much deeper than simply stating that you would defend someone from a wolf. Yes, it is true that real sheepdogs protect the sheep entrusted to their care, but they also have to guide them, to get them safely to the right location. A sheepdog doesn’t just sit on the outside of the flock, enjoying the sun while they can, staring at all those fat fluffy butts waiting on the wolf. A real sheepdog has to use skill and their instincts to corral the sheep and guide them to where the shepherd wants them to be moved.

What am I trying to say?

I think it is not enough to sit back and quietly plan, train and envision situations where we could be called into action. If we wait for the wolf to show up it might be too late if the sheep have already decided that it is the Sheepdogs who are the problem instead of the wolves. Think about it, do you believe the sheep want the sheepdogs telling them where to go if there is no wolf around? Do you ever hear any “sheep” say they expect a sheepdog (like you, not a cop) to defend them? If you consider yourself a sheepdog in the sense of what Mr. Grossman related above, are you getting out there? Are you making yourself known? Are you talking to the sheep and guiding them where you want them to go?

Or are you laying in the grass waiting for wolves?

I do think there is some risk we face of having the rug pulled out from under our feet by sheer complacency. Without dramatic action or overt crisis, we fail to raise our hackles at the small offenses happening daily. We simply ignore the danger if we can’t see it on TV. When we don’t see the wolf attacking with teeth and claw we think everything is good, but the sheep are still huddled together, talking and listening. Maybe they are really annoyed by these sheepdogs. I think the wolf is in the middle of them, whispering words, trying to turn the sheep. To make them believe the sheepdogs are the threat and to completely ignore the wolf.

You may forget that there are many more sheep than sheepdogs. We are outnumbered and we could find ourselves at the mercy of the fears of the sheep. If this happens, to a logical extent, we would all be rendered ineffective at doing much about it if we aren’t careful. If you do consider yourself a sheepdog, I think we need to be more intentional with our role. It isn’t enough to sit back and wait for an attack. You can’t just put up a nice graphic on your Facebook page. You have to get out there and try to move some sheep. What will you do?

This information has been made available by The Prepper Journal: What Happens When the Sheep Turn on the Sheepdogs

By Michael Snyder – The Economic Collapse

Russian soldiers and Ukrainian soldiers are now shooting at each other in eastern Ukraine.  Could this conflict ultimately lead us down the road to World War 3?  This week, a very robust force of “tanks, artillery and infantry” has opened up a “third front” in the Ukrainian civil war in a part of southeastern Ukraine that had not seen much fighting yet.  Exhausted Ukrainian forces are suddenly being pushed back rapidly and many outsiders are wondering how the nearly defeated rebels were able to muster such impressive military strength all of a sudden.  But it really isn’t much of a mystery.  The tanks, artillery and infantry came from inside Russia.  In recent days, Ukrainian units have captured ten Russian paratroopers and there have even been funerals for Russian paratroopers that have been killed in action back home in Russia.  Even though it has become exceedingly obvious that Russia is now conducting a stealth invasion of Ukraine, Vladimir Putin is still choosing to deny it.  But if he did publicly admit it, that would be even more dangerous.  Barack Obama would be forced into a position of either having to do something about the Russian invasion or look weak in the eyes of the public.  And as the Russians have already shown, they are more than willing to match any move that the Obama administration makes.

There has already been much written about who is to blame for all of this, and I am sure that much more will be written about who is to blame in the future.  The western world is blaming “Russian aggression” for the mess in Ukraine.    In return, the Russians point out that it was westerners that funded and organized the groups that violently overthrew the democratically-elected government of Ukraine.  To the Russians, the current government of Ukraine is made up of neo-Nazi terrorist usurpers that are attempting to brutally oppress millions of ethnic Russians in eastern Ukraine.

So the Russians seem themselves as “the good guys” in this conflict and so does the western world.  But that is how most wars start.  Both sides usually feel morally justified at the start of a conflict.

In the final analysis, however, is it really going to matter very much who was “right” and who was “wrong” if the end result is World War 3?

If the rebels in eastern Ukraine had been able to defeat the Kiev government forces on their own, Putin probably would have been content to let them do that.  But instead, they had been pushed back to two major cities and seemed on the verge of defeat.

But now it is the Ukrainian forces that are experiencing “panic and wholesale retreat”

Tanks, artillery and infantry have crossed from Russia into an unbreached part of eastern Ukraine in recent days, attacking Ukrainian forces and causing panic and wholesale retreat not only in this small border town but a wide swath of territory, in what Ukrainian and Western military officials are calling a stealth invasion.

The attacks outside this city and in an area to the north essentially have opened a new, third front in the war in eastern Ukraine between Ukrainian forces and pro-Russian separatists, along with the fighting outside the cities of Donetsk and Luhansk.

How is this happening?

It is the Russians of course.

In fact, if you talk to Ukrainian soldiers, they are very clear on who they are fighting now…

“I tell you they are Russians, but this is what proof I have,” said Sgt. Aleksei Panko, holding up his thumb and index finger to form a zero. Sergeant Panko estimated about 60 armored vehicles crossed near Novoazovsk. “This is what happened: they crossed the border, took up positions and started shooting.”

The Ukrainian Vinnytsia brigade met the cross-border advance over the six miles of countryside separating Novoazovsk from the Russian border, but later retreated to the western edge of town along the Rostov-Mariupol highway, where soldiers were collapsed in exhaustion on the roadside. “This is now a war with Russia,” Sergeant Panko said.

And as I mentioned above, Ukrainian forces have even captured ten Russian paratroopers.  Rather than denying who they are, the Russian government is claiming that they wandered into Ukraine by mistake

Ten Russian soldiers were detained in the Donetsk region of eastern Ukraine, that country’s Security Service said Tuesday, as tensions simmered over the conflict between Ukrainian forces and pro-Russian rebels.

The Russian soldiers were captured with documents and weapons on them, the Security Service said.

Moscow has repeatedly denied claims by Kiev that it has sent troops and weapons over the border into Ukraine, where the Ukrainian military is fighting pro-Russian rebels.

Russia’s state-run RIA Novosti news agency cited a source in the Russian Defense Ministry as saying the soldiers had been patrolling the border and “most likely crossed by accident” at an unmarked point.

The denials that Russian forces are actively operating inside eastern Ukraine have become so absurd that even some in the Russian press are openly questioning them.  For example, just check out this excerpt from a USA Today article that was posted on Wednesday…

Vedomosti, a liberal business daily, published an editorial Wednesday on events in Ukraine under the headline, “Are We Fighting?”

It noted the recent capture of the Russian soldiers on Ukrainian territory and reports of “mysterious funerals” of Russian soldiers, some of whom are officially counted dying during training exercises.

“The number of questions that hang in the air of the dead and detained Russian troops on the territory of Ukraine has reached a critical number. Does Russia fight in Ukraine and, if so, on what grounds? If not, then who is in those freshly dug graves or giving testimony at SBU (Russian Security service) interrogations?”

A Bloomberg editorial contained some more details about the “mystery funerals” that have been taking place inside Russia…

One such burial, of two soldiers, took place in the village of Vybuty near Pskov in northwestern Russia, where an airborne division is based. Efforts to conceal the deaths produced a fiasco. Though the wife of one paratrooper had reported his death on the Vkontakte social network, when a reporter, Ilya Vasyunin of the Russian Planet website, called the wife’s phone number, a woman who answered stated that the paratrooper was alive and well. Two reporters, from Russian Planet and TV Dozhd, who visited the cemetery where the two fresh graves had been seen were immediately attacked by men in black tracksuits. Local journalists, however, succeeded in photographing the graves. According to the independent TV Dozhd, the soldiers’ names and wreaths have been removed from the graves.

There are other reports of paratrooper funerals, which are hard to conceal. Soldiers have grieving families who do not necessarily share the authorities’ desire for deception. In any case, Ukrainian troops have captured some Russian paratroopers. For the first time since the conflict began in March, they were able to record interviews with them.

Sadly, most Americans are not paying much attention to this conflict.

Most Americans are not really going to care much about a war on the other side of the planet that does not directly involve us.

But they should care.

Because things are about to escalate to a level that we rarely saw even during the darkest moments of the Cold War.  Relations between the United States and Russia are spiraling downhill, and that could end up having a huge impact on all of our lives.

For example, in my previous article entitled “Russia Is Doing It – Russia Is Actually Abandoning The Dollar“, I discussed how this tug of war over Ukraine was causing Russia to think about moving away from the petrodollar.  Well, it turns out that now the Russians are actually taking concrete steps toward abandoning the petrodollar for good…

The Russian oil company Gazprom Neft has agreed to export 80,000 tons of oil from Novoportovskoye field in the Arctic; it will accept payment in rubles, and will also deliver oil via the Eastern Siberia-Pacific Ocean pipeline (ESPO), accepting payment in Chinese yuan for the transfers, the Russian business daily Kommersant reported Wednesday.

The Russian government and several of the country’s largest exporters have widely discussed the possibility of accepting payments in rubles for oil exports.

Last week, Russia began to ship oil from the Novoportovskoye field to Europe by sea. Two oil tankers are expected to arrive in Europe in September. According to Kommersant, the payment for these shipments will be received in rubles.

That is huge news, but you probably haven’t heard a thing about it on the big mainstream news networks.

Meanwhile, one thing that you probably have heard about is how “Russian hackers” attacked JPMorgan Chase earlier this month

Russian hackers attacked the U.S. financial system in mid-August, infiltrating and stealing data from JPMorgan Chase & Co. and at least one other bank, an incident the FBI is investigating as a possible retaliation for government-sponsored sanctions, according to two people familiar with the probe.

The attack resulted in the loss of gigabytes of sensitive data, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the probe is still preliminary. Authorities are investigating whether recent infiltrations of major European banks using a similar vulnerability are also linked to the attack, one of the people said.

As relations between the United States and Russia continue to decline precipitously, both sides will be looking for ways to hurt one another.

And that won’t be good for any of us.

So let us hope that cooler heads prevail.

But ultimately, this current conflict could end up taking us to a destination that the Cold War never did.

World War 3 will probably not happen next week, next month or even next year, but right now we are on a road which could eventually lead to the unthinkable.

Let us pray that our politicians are able to find the exit ramp at some point.

This article first appeared at The Economic Collapse: The Road To World War 3: Russia And Ukraine Are Now Engaged In A Shooting War

About the author:

Michael T. Snyder is a graduate of the University of Florida law school and he worked as an attorney in the heart of Washington D.C. for a number of years.

Today, Michael is best known for his work as the publisher of The Economic Collapse Blog and The American Dream

Read his new book The Beginning of the End



By Mac Slavo

On Tuesday morning my good friend Ed Thomas and I sat down for breakfast at the local IHOP in Killeen, TX about 10 minutes from the entrance gates of the Fort Hood military base. Ed, who is one of the folks behind The Daily Sheeple news web site, is a retired Army veteran who spent nearly two years in the middle of it all while in Baghdad, Iraq. As is generally the case when Ed and I get together, we discussed a whole host of topics, one of which happened to be the 2009 Fort Hood shooting involving Nidal Hasan.

Not being a military man myself, I wasn’t quite clear on the inner workings of Fort Hood, a base at which Ed was stationed for quite some time and grew up around pretty much his whole life. I hit him with a barrage of questions surrounding the 2009 ordeal, and asked him how it was possible that a single lone gunman could kill 13 people and injure over 30 more, especially given that he was on a military base in the middle of Texas, a conceal-carry state.

His answer was simple.

“Fort Hood is a gun free zone, just like our schools.”

There are some 50,000 people stationed on the base at any given time (military and civilian), making Fort Hood essentially a small city packed into about 200,000 acres, which incidentally makes it the largest military base in the world. With that many people in one place, it becomes a numbers game. Eventually someone is going to snap, just like they do in the civilian world. And like many parts of the civilian world, the only people allowed to carry guns on base are personnel operating under the umbrella of the military police – who are the first responders for various incidents at the massive cantonment.

According to Ed, the military police face the same problem on this base as law enforcement officers face in any American city. When an active shooter is on the loose, they’re minutes away, giving the perpetrator vital time to execute his mission.

Wednesday morning I jumped on a plane heading back home. As soon as I landed and turned my phone back on, I had several texts from Ed.

“You’re not gonna’ believe this,” read one of them, “we were just talking about this YESTERDAY.”

“Active shooter on base. No real information at this time. Whole city is on lock-down.”

The incident is now becoming much more clear. What we know is that four people are dead and many others injured. The shooter was a non-combat service member. Perhaps the only good news was that the shooter took his own life, potentially preventing many more casualties.

Upon learning of the incident, I immediately thought back to Ed’s comment. Fort Hood is a “gun free zone,” and the incident itself was eerily reminiscent of other recent shootings at gun free zones like the Sandy Hook elementary school and the Century movie theater in Aurora, Colorado.

You rarely hear about mass shootings in places where guns can be legally carried. And often, when a shooter with mass killing on his mind enters one of these facilities, he is put down by a law abiding citizen. One example of this was when an active shooter had executed two parishioners in a parking lot at the New Life Church in Colorado Springs back in 2007. As the shooter entered the building looking for more victims, armed security guard Jeanne Assam drew her personally owned concealed weapon and took him down. The shooter, now injured and unable to move, put the gun to his head and killed himself.

Giving law abiding citizens and trained military members the ability to carry their weapons may not prevent every gun death, but they could certainly limit the number of victims. One person with a gun could have prevented the Aurora theater shooting or the Sandy hook massacre, and saved scores of lives in the process.

In the aftermath of yet another Fort Hood mass shooting, this very argument has become a hot topic of discussion today, especially across the social network sphere, much to the chagrin of those who have, once again, begun calling for a nationwide ban on firearms.

Chet Cannon, a host on MTV, showed his outrage over the incident and echoed the sentiments of many proponents of self defense and personal responsibility via his Twitter feed when he noted, “Trained military in a GunFreeZone rendered helpless, again.”

 But not everyone agrees with Chet.

Shannon Watts, the founder of the gun control group “Moms Demand Action” believes that the solution isn’t allowing military service members to carry guns on base, but to disarm them. 

Apparently, Ms. Watts is not aware that Fort Hood’s soldiers have already been disarmed.

Those in and around the base immediately lashed out and made the point that there are thousands of soldiers at Fort Hood who have been trained to deal with these kinds of threats, yet they were essentially handcuffed by the restrictions.

CJ Grisham was on base while the incident unfolded and he voiced his frustrations online during the lock-down and shelter-in-place order:

I can’t help but get pissed off when there is an active shooter on a MILITARY BASE and Soldiers are told to “shelter in place.” It’s so antithetical to what we do for a living. The response should be, “find the bastard and mow him down!”

His frustrations boiled down to one simple argument:
We will no doubt hear renewed calls from the anti-gun crowd in coming days and weeks demanding that the President take action to curb gun violence.

The problem is that there are over 300  million guns in America, and perhaps billions more worldwide.

It is simply not possible to put the genie back in the bottle. You can outlaw guns in America today and seize every weapon from law abiding citizens. But that will not solve the problem.


Those who want to do harm to others will find a way. They could, for example, purchase ATF-provided weapons directly from drug cartels operating out of central America. They will happily send their wares into the United States for a profit. In fact, illegal weapons suppliers may well be helping to lobby Congress for gun bans just so they can expand their trade.

Gun bans, as is evident with this most recent Fort Hood shooting, will not work.

Twenty people were killed or wounded in Fort Hood yesterday.

Had just one of those people had a firearm then maybe most or all of those deaths and injuries could have been prevented.

More at Outrage Over Gun Free Zone: “The Very People Trained To Take Out Armed Attackers… Are Disarmed.”

 Jian-10 fighter jets of China Air Force (Reuters / Petar Kujundzic)

Jian-10 fighter jets of China Air Force (Reuters / Petar Kujundzic)

Chinese fighter jets were scrambled and followed US and Japanese planes that had entered the newly-proclaimed Chinese air defense zone in the disputed area of the East China Sea, Xinhua reports.

Two US surveillance aircraft and 10 Japanese F-15 jets were   ‘tailed’ by Chinese pilots on Friday.

China ordered an urgent dispatch of its Su-30 and J-10 fighter  jets to an area in the East China Sea after the foreign aircraft   “invaded” the air defense zone, they said.

The reported intrusions came in defiance of the East China Sea  Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ), established by Beijing   last week.

China’s move has triggered outrage from several states in the  region and critical rhetoric from the US, as the vast zone covers  disputed areas, including the islets claimed by both China and  Japan.

Earlier on Thursday, the Chinese Air Force conducted its first  air patrol flights over the zone, as Japan and South Korea sent  their own military aircraft into the zone’s airspace in an act of  defiance.

China has stressed its decision to enforce the airspace  identification zone – which requires all aircraft flying over or  near it to identify themselves – follows common international  practices and “is a necessary measure in China’s exercise of  self-defense rights.”

No international flights will be affected by the setup of the  zone, Chinese Air Force spokesman, Shen Jinke, told Xinhua.

Japan and its US ally blasted the decision as   “unacceptable” and rejected the “unilateral”   declaration, saying it would create dangerous tension. However,  Chinese officials gave a reminder that both countries have long  had their own ADIZ, and that the Japanese never discussed theirs  with their neighbor.

“If they want it revoked, then we would ask that Japan first  revoke its own air defense identification zone and China will  reconsider it after 44 years,” China’s Defense Ministry  spokesman, Yang Yujun, said in a statement posted on the  ministry’s website on Thursday.

While possible action against the zone’s infiltrators has been  vaguely defined as “defensive emergency measures,” The  Global Times, a Chinese state media newspaper, on Friday called  for “timely countermeasures without hesitation,” should  Tokyo violate the new ADIZ.

At the same time, the paper suggested China could ignore  violations by some other states, including the US. Two US  military B-52 bombers flew over the area on Monday without prior notice,  with a Pentagon spokesman telling Reuters we “have continued  to follow our normal procedures.”  – RT


By Josh

The unfortunate reality of a large-scale collapse is that our greatest threat is usually not the environment, but rather the people living around you. Whether it’s an armed and prepared band of hardcore looters or just a random group of starving and frantic refugees, the sight of a group of people will not be a happy occasion during an extended emergency. It will be up to you and whatever able-bodied defense force you can rally to protect your home, family, livestock, and any other valuable possessions such as food and water supplies from falling into the hands of others.

Improving defense with force multipliers

Depending on where you live, the means available to protect yourself will be different. Someone in the country may only have to fight off smaller groups with larger bands fanning out after the initial catastrophe has died down, while someone in a suburb or city might be faced with an initial force of millions that rapidly dwindles as supplies dry up and looting and disease take their toll on the population. Regardless, you will probably be outnumbered unless you have the good fortune of being near well-prepared friends, family, and neighbors. In this case, the concept of a force multiplier, a device, tactic, or terrain advantage that improves the effectiveness of your group without adding more people, could be the difference between life and death.

What are spider and fox holes?

Both spider holes and foxholes are common military defenses that can serve the embattled survivor well, whether he is alone or has multiple people at his back to protect him. They can be built with nothing more than a shovel, a strong back, time, and an area of dirt to tunnel into, which makes them very simple to construct.

A spider hole is exceedingly small, but easy to build and camouflage.

A spider hole is exceedingly small, but easy to build and camouflage.

A spider hole is a tiny hole, just big enough to completely conceal a sitting observer, that is used primarily for scouting and observation rather than extended combat. These little pockets can be rather uncomfortable if you have to sit in one all day, but their small size makes them easy to build and camouflage quickly. Typically covered in a network of leaves and other native vegetation, spider holes were used to great effect against American forces in the Pacific Theater of World War II and in Vietnam, when the North Vietnamese would use them to observe networks of traps and give warning to their patrols of incoming American troops.

A foxhole requires more effort to setup, but offers actual protection and some freedom of movement as a payoff.

A foxhole requires more effort to setup, but offers actual protection and some freedom of movement as a payoff.

A foxhole is one of the most common defensive structures in most modern battlefields. A good deal larger than your typical spider hole, foxholes are usually between 5 and 6.5 feet in length, about 3 feet wide and deep enough to provide cover without making it difficult to look or shoot over the top. The loose earth from the digging can be used to build up an earthen wall at the front of the hole or for whatever other use you have for loose earth.

Although they are essentially glorified holes in the ground, foxholes can even be customized depending on your particular needs.  For example, a common military defense will include multiple grenade sumps, small tunnels cut into the backside of your foxhole to throw grenades into and protect you from the blast somewhat. However, unless you run into a gang of crazies that stole from a National Guard Armory or the like, you may be better served in not spending the extra energy digging such things to use against hostile refugees and looters. A more practical option might be the addition of water drainage sumps, that keep the fighting area dry by providing a place for rainwater to go instead of turning your defensive position into a muddy frog pond.

How to build a spider hole

Spider holes are very easy to build, designed to require minimal effort so that you can have several of them if need be. Here’s a basic guide for building one for yourself.

  1. Find a suitable spot. Look for areas away from trees and bushes unless the cover they offer is worth hacking through thick roots. Your main focus is not building these in positions good for defending your retreat: spider holes are for observation and rarely a small scale ambush not a full-on firefight. Obviously a key ingredient here is dirt, preferably stuff that’s easy to dig through quickly. Also be aware of potential hazards like nearby waterways and street drainage systems, as you don’t want your hole filled with water during a heavy rain.
  2. Dig a circular hole a little larger than the largest expected occupant. You do want to have room to shift about if you need to, and scraping the edges because it’s too tight when you climb in is a dead giveaway. Remember that the depth is designed for a sitting observer, so don’t worry about digging a really deep hole here.
  3. Design the “Lid”. Use native plants, twigs, grass etc to make it look like a part of the scenery. Include some manner of observation port in the lid so that your scout can see what’s going on in several directions.
  4. If needed, dig small sumps for water drainage. You want this hole as small and unobtrusive as possible, but sometimes the observation point is in an area that frequently gets water in the hole, so a sump or two might be needed.

Surprise suckers!

And it’s really that simple. So long as you keep an eye out for any snakes that might like to visit your cool, dry, cubbyhole, you should be nice and snug watching the goings-on about you.

How to build a foxhole

This is a little more involved, and you’ll be doing some hard labor for a bit to get one of these setup.

  1. Pick a proper site. Aside from watching out for particularly wet or otherwise dangerous areas, you’ll want to position your foxhole(s) for best use in defending your retreat. This might be right in front of your home, at the entrance to your neighborhood, or at the entrance to a long, winding driveway. The chief thing is to make sure that your holes have clear fields of fire, command nearby high ground so that you aren’t shot by a well-placed sniper while you’re in your hole, and support each other if you have multiple holes in close proximity.
  2. Dig your rectangular hole, 5-6.5 feet by 3 feet, and dig down until the top of the wall comes up to your armpits. This provides your basic cover, gives you some room to sit, stand, and shoot in relative comfort with freedom of movement, and still allows for good cover.
  3. Add your slightly deeper water sump/vehicle diving hole in the center of the foxhole. I call this little feature a vehicle diving hole because you can use it to give you some headroom if someone should attempt to run over your foxhole in a vehicle of some kind. This design is usually used for heavy tanks, so your standard civilian vehicle shouldn’t pose a problem if you have a chance to get under cover. If you plan on making grenade sumps, angle this water sump towards them in order to help the round grenade bodies roll away from you.
  4. If you wish, add several grenade sumps to your hole. Again, it isn’t very likely that you’ll need one, but if you do see a reason for them then it’s a fairly simple digging. Just dig about two feet deeper than your water sump, and add several 4-5 inch wide grenade holes to protect yourself. For maximum protection, add several grenade sumps to both sides of your foxhole.
  5. About 2 feet in the front and sides of the hole, add logs, sandbags, or other bullet resistant materials to form a short protective wall around your foxhole. Dirt can also be used, if you have the luxury of time to let it set or lack other materials suitable for the job. You will want to leave or cut holes in this wall for you to see and shoot through, as the next step will include a roof to protect you from overhead debris.
  6. Place a short (roughly 2 feet long) line of wall materials about 2 feet behind your hole. This will support the roof and protect from shrapnel from behind. 
  7. Place logs or other thick supporting beams across the top of your foxhole, setting them on the wall material in the back and front walls. This will act as the first and best layer against overhead bombardments and provides you with shelter against rain and weather.
  8. Cover the logs with a waterproof covering like a tarp or poncho, then cover the entire structure in dirt, grass, leaves etc as camouflage. Aside from the few holes you leave for seeing and shooting, you want your foxholes to be difficult to pick out after the grass has had a chance to cover up the evidence of digging. Plus, dirt can be helpful in stopping dangerous shrapnel from penetrating above you through the roof. 

It's not easy work, but a fully functional foxhole is a formidable defense if the man inside of it is competent.

It’s not easy work, but a fully functional foxhole is a formidable defense if the man inside of it is competent.

Once you’re finished, you can feel somewhat safer with a good defensive position available to you. Now, unless you own enough land that you won’t have neighbors calling the cops when they see you setting up a small bunker in the front yard, this isn’t practical to setup before disaster strikes for most people. Spider holes can be built as they’re designed to be hidden and aren’t very obtrusive, but a manmade hill with firing slits in it might look somewhat out of place on a suburban lawn. Use good judgement before you build these, as you don’t want to be labeled a kook or anarchist before things start to go down. However, you do want to be ready and knowledgeable if a time should come when you need a solid defensive structure to protect yourself and your family, so if you do find the opportunity to practice building one take the chance! – Prepared For That

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I’ve seen that there are many veterans in the armed forces amongst the preparedness crowd, and your knowledge would be useful. Any tips anyone has one constructing a solid earthwork defense would be greatly appreciated!

Boston 2013(

Pictured: Boston 2013)

The Posse Comitatus Act of 1878 was originally established to protect American citizens from the federal use of military troops to enforce and execute the laws of the land unless expressly authorized by the Constitution or  Congress. Since then, for over a century, this task has fallen upon local and federal law enforcement. But with the War on Terror taking center stage in the United States for the last decade, elements within the government have been working tirelessly to expand the mission of the US military on the domestic front.

First, they passed the Patriot Act, which gave the government sweeping new powers to categorize any individual as a terrorist, whether they are operating on foreign lands or here at home. In 2011, as America brought in the New Year, they signed into law the National Defense Authorization Act, which made it possible for American citizens who were categorized as domestic terrorists under the Patriot Act to be detained and imprisoned indefinitely without charge or trial.

Finally, last week we learned that, as President Obama came under fire for the many scandals rocking his administration, the government was quietly moving to give the Department of Defense unprecedented authority on U.S. soil, effectively nullifying Posse Comitatus.

Eric Blair of Activist Post writes:

First, the senate is debating an expansion of the already broad powers of the 2001 Authorization to Use Military Force (AUMF) so the U.S. can essentially engage any area in the world in the war on terror, including America. Which brings us to the second development: the Pentagon has recently granted itself police powers on American soil.

Assistant Secretary of Defense Michael Sheehan told Congress yesterday that the AUMF authorized the US military to operate on a worldwide battlefield from Boston to Pakistan.  Sheehan emphasized that the Administration is authorized to put boots on the ground wherever the enemy chooses to base themselves, essentially ignoring the declaration of war clause in the US Constitution.

While Americans were distracted with three developing scandals pushed by both wings of the mainstream media, sinister developments were taking place behind closed doors. In essence, the US military has granted itself the power to deploy troops on the streets of America without approval from the President or Congress, and the AUMF, which was originally designed to target the terrorists responsible for 9/11, has been expanded to give the government authority to use military assets on the domestic front without a declaration from Congress.

Charlie McGrath of Wide Awake News explains:

Thanks to the hard work of Eric Blair at Activist Post we understand that Washington D.C. has been very busy eroding your freedom.

In fact, Senator Angus King went so far as to say that the hearing he was involved in was the most astonishing and disturbing hearing he has ever seen.

Even John McCain, war hawk John McCain, came out and said the government has gone way beyond its authority.

What are they talking about? The AUMF – Authorization to Use Military Force.

This piece of legislation that was put into place way back when we started the war on terror that is now turning from foreign enemies to YOU. Don’t be shocked by that, because you are on the list if you are a freedom minded, free thinker that believes in a Constitutional Republic.

They are changing the wording of this thing so that the military can be used on the streets of this country.

It’s not a conspiracy theory. It’s not some kind of a fancy fantasy that may come true down the road.

It is happening right now, in the guise of other news events that are not news events.

Even more terrifying is the fact that West Point has come out recently and said that you – if you have a theory that the federal government is trying to take over and implement a national police force – you could fall into the category of a domestic terrorist.

A domestic terrorist that can be dealt with by military force…

The only conspiracy here is what the government is telling us.

This legislation is real. The militarization of America is in full force. We are the targets.

Author: Mac Slavo