UK RAF Top Brass Delusional? Probably.

THE WAR against ISIS in Iraq is “winnable”, RAF chiefs revealed yesterday, as British typhoons destroyed fortified terrorist strongholds where fighters hid and stored explosives and ammunition.

Drop a few bombs, kill a few terrorists, job done?
Same horse shit we’ve heard before yet ISIS keep coming back.
Why is that?

Could it be that the higher you get in rank the less you bother to understand the enemy? Or is it that they believe the Intel they are fed by agencies who also don’t understand the enemy or have a hidden agenda?

For that I cite:-

  • The ongoing fiasco that was a war won by the US in Iraq.
    Following iffy Intel, plus Bush and Blair.
    Incidentally. Who is looking after that oil today?
  • Libya. Now a failed state.
    Same question. Who ended up with the oil?
  • Couple that with Afghanistan.
    Was there oil?
    Of was it all about a Middle East Tour that ignored history so ended up repeated the errors of others?
    And who ended up with NOTHING.
  • Syria. Ah, Syria.
    Didn’t NATO win there as well?
    Somehow I think not.

It’s boots on the ground that wins wars with the Air Force and Navy playing bit parts in support where appropriate.

Much as I loath staff officers, I console myself with the thought that they generally only spout the shit they are fed. Be that inaccurate, political, or provided as a means to suit someone else’s agenda.

Thank Gawd for Senior NCO’s!
The good one’s working flat out at protecting the grunts from the whimsies of higher command.

An extension to Prepare for WW3

Post Link (Prepare for WW3)

I was talking to SWMBO about attack indicators for conflicts and how I would be monitoring the ramblings or our chief Muppet PM Johnson in case he started digging us into the mire.

And this caught my notice today.
In a tweet, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky thanked Mr Johnson for his support against a “serious challenge to the security of NATO members” and said his nation was “not alone” and was “supported by the G7 nations”.

It took nanoseconds for the Russians to reply.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov warned Ukraine that cosying up to NATO “will only worsen the situation.”

Yep I agree, and while the Russians are sat on their side of the border I’m not too worried.

EXCEPT, if NATO do decide to play, they might just be temped to take a high explosive dump on those “massed troops”. After that, I reckon it’s going to be more a matter of grasp ankles and kiss our butts goodbye.

To that end, The Pentagon says US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin spoke with his Ukrainian counterpart Andrew Taran on April 1 and “condemned the recent escalation of Russia’s aggressive and provocative actions in eastern Ukraine.”

Tell me, did I get it right that the US turned their back on the Ukraine years ago after the signing of the Minsk II Accords?
Something they (and the UK) weren’t allowed to participate in.

But, there is more to this mess than meets the eye and a newspaper noted this. When Mr Zelensky visited the UK in October 2020 a “Memorandum of Intent” was signed with the Ministry of Defence to secure a £1.25billion 10-year loan – with the UK agreeing to supply military equipment as part of that. (Ex)

To that end, a joint Ukrainian-British project is to build small warships for/with them. The first two ships being constructed in the UK. The remaining six vessels topped off in Ukraine.

While it’s not exactly a declaration of active support, supplying them with ‘military equipment ‘ does raise the ante a bit. Although that thought needs to be moderated by the fact that the UK is high in the league table of arms dealers to the ‘sometimes questionable’.

Anyway, all this kissing butt by our chief Muppet Johnson is raising the ‘Russian’ threat level towards us as the UK clearly supports the Ukraine.

I always think that all Intel in a burgeoning crisis is worth a mention.

One Eye Or Two

Using One Eye or Both eyes is a growing discussion when training a new shooter OR converting a traditionally trained shooter to combat / self-defense shooting or hunting.

It all starts by checking which is your dominant eye. Why?
Because that’s the eye which see’s better and transfers visual data to the brain faster than the other.
Some would argue they KNOW which is their dominant eye.
While it is true that dominance is usually fixed by age 10, as you age, your eyes can differ in performance. As demonstrated by the need for two different magnifications in glasses. As a result eye dominance CAN CHANGE.
So do yourself a favor and check which is now your dominant eye.

How to find your dominant eye?
Extend your arms out in front of you and create a triangle.
Keep both eyes open quickly ‘frame’ an object further than 20 meters.
Now close your left eye.
If the object stays centered, right is your dominant eye.
Open left close right.
If the object stays centered, left is your dominant eye.

Only occasionally you may be left or right-handed with the opposite side as your dominant eye. That can become problematic, BUT however you hold your rifle, you always use the eye that is closest to the weapon.

Wanna change your eye dominance because you find you are cross handed to your dominant eye? You can change it over time by suppressing the dominant eye by using an eye patch. Something gun owners have been doing forever.

One eye verses keeping both open.

  • Most people find it easier and more natural when on a range.
  • It allows you to use your stronger dominant eye
  • It’s easier to sharpen your focus with your dominant eye.
  • EXCEPT, you will lose some of your field of view by only using one eye.

On the streets, in real life, it may cause you to not see the bad guy’s buddy as your FOV is restricted.

Using two eyes verses one eye

  • You regain your full field of vision thus preserving your peripheral vision. In a self-defense mode, that’s crucial.
  • Two eyes assists with ranging, elevation problems and wind speed calculations.
  • Two eyes allows you to quickly swap onto another target as you can already see it with your other eye.
  • However, some may find it more difficult to focus the foresight / reticle onto  target if you are not using your dominant eye.
    The good news is you can retrain your eyes to do this. (Eye patch)
  • Except, for some, that’s not always easy and, for them,  to convert from only using one eye to using both is an acquired skill.

Personally, if you are using a weapon for self-defense, I would recommend using both eyes open.

The big die off. Prepper Myth? Maybe not.

Not all preppers are obsessed with TEOTWAWKI.
However, some of us make our plans using a worse case mindset when prepping for a serious long term event.

Personally, I’ve got a really ‘down to Earth’ approach to short and long term.
To get to long term, you need to survive the short term.
After that, long term depends on you suiting your individual needs for the scenario you find yourself in.

Generally speaking, multiple ‘local’ TEOTWAWKI events around the world have proven that when people try to help themselves after no one else will, government steps in and makes things harder by using the full force of law or military controls to stop them doing what is necessary to save themselves.

Those agencies saying, “Stop what you are doing, I’m from the government and here to help you.”

The concept of “The Big Die Off”

“Wanna know the funny thing about the end of the world?
It’ll still be there afterwards”.

So if you remove the masses, quaint controls, politics, and laws, disaster will generally present you with opportunity if you are resourceful enough to use it.

Where am I going with all this?
The world and it’s latest pandemic.
The first round of infection still not finished, the governments around the world are going to force a new normality (get back to work) onto the masses for the simple reason that they are losing too much money.

Preppers view this as a second disaster waiting to happen and you can clearly see that starting in the rising number of deaths as lockdowns are eased.

Only this time the death toll will be larger and will see medical facilities overwhelmed.

So how are we hoping things will go?
Perhaps, the magical vaccine will appear just in time. (ROTFL)
More realistically the carnage could see smaller more remote populations wiped out and major utilities lost as professionals and tradesmen die off.

Which suits our TEOTWAWKI’ survival mindset of “Disaster makes opportunity”, with only one caveat.

The death toll may not be high enough leaving some sort of governance which will try to retain control over the masses AND over the survivors they have/had no intention of helping in the first place!

HEPA filters unsafe for DIY face masks MYTH!

There are video’s going around saying DO NOT USE HEPA VACUUM BAGS for making DIY PPE masks as they can contain fiberglass and one even claimed Asbestos.

While that may be true about fiberglass in some filters used in the automotive or furnace filters, vacuum cleaner bags DON’T use fiberglass and definitely NOT asbestos.

HEPA came about in vacuum cleaners because it helped allergy sufferers so using something that could spew particles in to the air, especially irritants, glass, and ASBESTOS, isn’t exactly a good idea.

HEPA, is an acronym for “High Efficiency Particulate Air” or “High Efficiency Particulate Arrestance.”There are two main types detailed below.

The main differences between HEPA-type and True HEPA (the gold standard of filtration) filter are the filtration efficiency.

In general, HEPA-type filter has a 99% efficiency rate of capturing particles as small as 2 microns. True HEPA filter up the game with a better 99.97% efficiency rate at particles as small as 0.3 microns.

Numbers, and VERY small numbers, always confuse me so I’ll try to explain them.

2 microns is 0.002 of a mm. Which is “small”.
0.3 microns is 0.0003 of a mm.
Which is soooooo tiny it manages to stop most particles.

Only Corvid-19 is way smaller than that!!!
“Mr. Average” coronavirus particles is around 125 nm or 0.000125 of a mm.
Does that mean it passes straight through a HEPA FILTER?
In theory YES, if the HEPA was a single layer.
Only they aren’t. They are LAYERED!
So in real life, YES they do stop most viruses.
HEPA filters can catch nearly 100% of 0.0001mm ultra-fine particles but are only TESTED to 0.0003 of a mm by HEPA standards.

So does that render you completely safe from the virus?
Nope, there is no such thing as being 100% safe!
Especially if you are doing table top PPE like we are.

This virus is transmitted as a particle carried by moisture in a person’s cough. So you touch something that has been coughed on – it’s on your hands.
Or, if droplets get into your eyes, you’ve got it.
Or, if you rub your now contaminated hands on your face or rub your eyes,
Or, if you eat something without washing your hands, it can get into you.

So why bother with a mask? Seriously?
HEPA WORKS BUT NEEDS HELP, YOUR HELP!
You could for instance cover your eyes wearing wrap round glasses,
DON’T TOUCH YOUR FACE
is a huge one as adjusting face masks is so easy to do without thinking about things.
Wearing impervious gloves
helps, but above all that:

WASH YOUR HANDS
WITH SOAP AND WATER!

Don’t just rely on alcohol rubs or no soap hand gels.
The why is soap bursts the individual virus’s protective shell.
Clean surfaces regularly with disinfectant or even soapy water.
We use “baby bleach” (aka Milton) in a fine spray bottle (mainly because I trust bleach) but normal kitchen and washroom cleaners are said to be just as effective. CAUTION ELECTRICITY AND LIQUIDS DON’T MIX”

We also wipe down stuff you bring into your home and, where appropriate, discard external packaging.

Do I need to say don’t bleach your fruit and veg? I hope not!
We do however run it under the tap, pat dry, and leave to dry before racking it.

Why do all this?
A blob of virus will survive well on hard and soft surfaces.
Some ex-spurts saying in ideal conditions, over 72 hours.
Impervious surfaces being the worst culprits i.e. metal, plastics, glass.
The why is the virus needs it’s bubble of water to survive and once dry, it dies.

This is all CBRN Decontamination 101 folks.
Let alone good housekeeping.

So where am I getting all this data from?
The Internet, NASA, CDC, WHO, NHS, and official bodies in the medical world who are falling over themselves to inform you.

Vacuum cleaner bag science is extensive as well as is the details about HEPA filtration. A few universities have done studies on DIY PPE recently. This is all part of researching your subject and something I did a lot of before starting to make masks.

Yet, having said all that, being a prepper I had laid in a stock of FFP3 masks.
That’s equivalent to N98 in US terms.
We use them when in enclosed spaces as social distancing is NOT the UK’s sheeple way of doing things. Stupidity they do well. Anything else seems to much bother and involves thinking.

And finally.
Distance is king in combat and this is a fight only against a much more cold blooded killer. So, keep your distance to more than social spacing (2m), cover up, wash often, and PLEASE download a basic guide to CBRN and decontamination.

And yes, I’m still going to be making DIY masks as the proper PPE has been price gouged above our means and largely unavailable at this time.

Will they work as well as the “proper gear”.
Probably not but something is better than NOTHING!

As always, don’t take my word for anything.
Do your own research as that’s the responsible thing to do.

Meet my GPS system


Add SWMBO reading the map as I drive and we usually get to where we want.

We also have a little electronic GPS but it has a habit of taking us “the pretty way around”, down goat tracks and one way streets (the wrong way). You know, the usual tricks electronics loves to do, BUT, our trusty car compass, and 3 year out of date map book NEVER fails.

And today I read:-
GPS systems could be brought down next month due to a computer calendar error says information security expert. An expert at the RSA 2019 security conference in San Francisco this week said he predicts a Y2K like computer error for older GPS systems to take place on April 6, in less than a month’s time.

I worked flat-out for a month preparing for that little gem in 1999.

GPS is controlled by satellites, so what about them?
When prepping for Y2K I simply installed an upgrade on the PC’s and laptops.
Pop disk in, run Y2KFix, take disk out, job done.
Occasionally changing out BIOS chips.
Sooooo, what about them satellites again?
Hows about the International space station.
That’s old enough to have pre-UNIX, Windows, or whatever on it.

Then there is the embedded hardware.
A chip, programmed at birth, never to be amended again, quietly sat in tiny things like aircraft and ships, GPS systems, Epirbs, and a whole host of other emergency systems that depend on the GPS for navigation and safety.

It’s the “never to be amended again ” bit that always makes me, the service industry,  and manufacturers smile.

Um. If he is right, I mean the expert, things could get interesting.
Chuckle, I’ve just had an amusing thought.
All them battle drones, MERV’s, and cruise missiles owned by the armed forces around the world. Launched to go kill someone, got lost, RTB on their own, BOOM!

Sick sense of humor?
You think!

How complex does it need to be?

Survival I mean.
The basics of Shelter, Water, Fire, Food, and Hygiene.
How to Sleep. So many forget sleep.
Acquiring what you need by foraging, hunting, trapping, fishing.
Getting to somewhere on the rush, and back if appropriate.
Surviving the environment that may be too hot, too cold, too wet, too dry, and too windy.
Surviving a man made hostile environment  like CBRN contamination.
The “When to stay in and why, and how to work outside bit”.

Then there is a war, conflict, civil unrest, big brother, the state, thieves and marauders.
When you look back at disasters, especially where the infrastructure of government isn’t capable of ‘saving you’ or, more probably, don’t give a sh’t about you, then survival can get complex fast.

The basics still stand, the problems are usually caused by others.
So what’s the answer to that?
Is there a basic plan you can adopt to suit every contingency when dealing with others?
There seems to be a few basic thoughts going around.

  • Get armed,
  • Get co-operative as there is safety in numbers,
  • Or go lone wolf to small unit or family/friend group.

Yet none of them work in all cases and ignore the obvious.
People will do anything to survive or cash in on another’s misfortune and use opportunity aka looting for gain.

So I’ve jotted down a few thoughts about these three main thought processes.
See what you think.

Get Armed.
OK, makes sense for hunting (sort of) and self defence, if not for offensive action.
Will being armed get you shelter, water, food, and anything else you need?
Yep, maybe, and it can make life easy too.
You either throw out the owner, rob them, enslave them, or kill them.
Until the next guy comes along.
But Hey, you’re armed so that isn’t a problem, or is it? YES IT IS!
Mainly because of the stupid notion some will hold that they can cope against anyone.
A question.
Is there ever going to be anyone out there that will be better equipped, trained, more experienced in combat, or more motivated than you, let alone luckier with a gun ?
If you say no then I think you’re a fool.

Get co-operative.
This can be good if you have already established ‘local connections’.
The problems can be leadership and other groups you may encounter.
That and joining a group.

Leadership.
You can’t work together in harmony unless someone is organising things.
In survival or even life, there is seldom a case when ‘management by common consensus’ works.
I think of it as too many minds.
Some will not be thinking common good, others will just be looking for leadership.
Some will resent working with others, for others, putting their needs above all.
Some simply won’t share what they have got with others.
There will always be ones who hate being ‘organised and controlled’ .
That’s human nature for you.
Thus working in a group will require leadership qualities and discipline.
Enforced at times on those who will instinctively rebel.
Enforcement. Wow, doesn’t that open a can of worms.

As for other groups?
For all the above reasons, they will be out to gain for their own.
Yet the merging of resources, manual and material can be good  BUT we are back to leadership and now diplomacy.
Gawd this is sounding more like modern life, government, and precisely the same mix that probably caused the breakdown (in the case of civil upset or conflict) in the first place.
So what you’ve got to ask yourself and everyone is what do they want to do about others. It’s a discussion that needs to happen WELL BEFORE the event happens.

Once that principle has been agreed on by everyone, without any dissenters as they will cause your group problems should such an event occur, you’ve got to stick to it and that “STICKABILITY” will be down to the groups leadership. Almost a dictatorship is a leader during a survival scenario and as such something not very attractive to everyone.

So now I have to revisit enforcement within a group because in survival you may need to order a course of action. What to do about those who won’t ‘tow the line’, obey, or whatever term you want to use.

I can think of no worse case than a group turning on itself for survival.
Yet in the case of CBRN it can be vital to enforce a discipline that everyone abides with.
Take a contagion, something simple like flu.
In a grid down scenario medical care may be basic so now you may have few choices.

  • Let the person spread the illness possibly endangering all,
  • Put them into imposed quarantine, or
  • Eject them until they have got better, or died.

With a family that’s going to be tough. Either an adult or child getting ill, it doesn’t matter. Their blood ties will rebel at being separated because of the desire to help one of their own. They can’t help it but the leadership may have to enforce it.
Seeing someone being controlled or at worse ejected or ‘humanely put down’, someone ill, especially in a well established group will cause stress.
The voice of reason, the obvious dangers, even agreements, will be tested at that time.
Illness and not something simple like dissent and can be disastrous to a group.

Funny thing is you don’t read a lot about dealing with this in prepper or the survivalist mantras.
That’s because the whole concept is emotive.
Those who have experienced it will vouch for that.
I’m thinking triage and treatment in combat there.
With someone who has no hope of survival and you having limited resources and others you can save. What are you going to do about them?
Abandon them, put them out of their misery, or what.
It’s too easy to suggest a solution for everything and foolish.
Everything is subject to what is going on at that time.

No, I’m not dodging the issue but have experienced the results of decisions taken and have also been grateful for those who did not give up on me. Hence I’m well biased.

OK, Onward!
Lone wolf, small combat group or ‘family unit’.
The thing they may have in common is flexibility and the ability to keep moving, foraging for what they need but being small enough to roam.

There is however a glaring fault within this heading and that is the lone wolf.
Let’s talk about just two things, SLEEP and health.
To sleep safe is damn difficult when you are on your own.
Even with a companion dog, there will be times when someone is vulnerable.
As for getting sick or injured?
Stitching up a wound on your back when you can’t see it is difficult enough but administering medicine when you can’t move would be worse. A slow lonely decline to death is what most would fear.

Plus what would you do if you came across others?
The meet and greet bit, the ownership of what you ‘find’ disputed by another.
If it was a group and you engaged or just upset them, one against many may work (in Hollywood) but in real life a well organised group may choose to hunt you down.
As for you bring sick and asking for help in an austere scenario?
We’re back to triage and what they do about it. You are at their mercy when you are alone.

No matter what you may feel, there is safety in numbers, with people you have trained with or simply you are part of.

And finally that title.
How complex does it need to be?
Bullets, beans and bandages is the simplistic view of some.
Military styled groups for another.
Family and friends units for others
Communes / communities / colonies for the rest
And a few who still think their government will save them no matter what.

It’s not simple at all is it. As complex as hell and then some.