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Old February 6, 2012, 02:26 PM   #51
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Great feedback

I was away at training, and busy at work, so am just now checking the thread again.

Many of the comments relate to what I would call "strategy" rather than "tactics" (i.e., "Don't get into a gunfight"). Sound advice, but a bit beyond the scope of what I'm trying to accomplish with the list.

The basic behavior that defines a warrior is knowing what you need to do, then going out and doing it. These tips are just something to feed the lizard brain to keep you alive long enough so you can think of a solution (I guess that defines most training).

I have modified the list somewhat:

-changed "fire superiority" to "return fire": Same concept, but toned down due to the context in which we work;

-I'm going to be more specific on "tactical advantage", but I haven't figured it out yet;

-I'm adding 3 to the list: Aim for pelvis hits if body armor is suspected; Something about situational awareness; Know the difference between cover and concealment (especially offensively).

About the "radio won't save your life", clearly one needs to communicate and report. The point is, when the situation is getting hairy, to use the old platitude, backup is minutes away when seconds count.

All of these tips are highly situational, and don't apply to every incident, but, to use another old platitude, the exception proves the rule.

I wanted to keep each tip very short, but might add some detail, and even consolidate some (like the ones relating to cover/concealment).

I don't think I am going to distribute it as a list in class, because it is not policy or doctrine (and we labor under those constraints as instructors, which is probably a good thing...). I plan to use it as discussion points before we head out to the range.
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Old February 16, 2012, 09:32 PM   #52
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Something I've been munching over as I've read this thread, and thought awhile about is the importance of getting a long arm into play.

I've read about some LE deaths in shootouts and keep coming back to the thought of
"If that poor guy could have gotten his patrol carbine or riot gun working, he might have came out alive."

Therefore, I suppose situational awareness is critical in that if you can anticipate the situation prior to shots being fired, perhaps you can achieve the critical edge and bring your long arm into play.
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Old February 16, 2012, 09:45 PM   #53
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Your 27 item list of things to remember before and during a gunfight applies to training.

Once the fight starts, you may utilize SOME of the principles relevent to your specific problem, but you won't be thinking about most of them.
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Old February 17, 2012, 11:48 AM   #54
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1. Shoot Back. You can't miss fast enough to win a gunfight, so make your shots count.

2. Get to cover. This helps you not get shot.

3. You will probably get shot. Keep fighting.

Keep it simple.
"To preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms, and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them." -Richard Henry Lee, Virginia delegate to the Continental Congress, initiator of the Declaration of Independence, and member of the first Senate, which passed the Bill of Rights.
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Old February 17, 2012, 04:37 PM   #55
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Another thing I've been pondering on is the level of aggression displayed in the fight.

Be aggressive; win. Something that was drilled into my head repeatedly at WLC was "A bad plan executed violently now is better than a good plan later."
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Old March 8, 2012, 10:08 AM   #56
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As an LEO, I agree with the other posters that make rule #1
1. Avoid a gunfight!
2. If you are not an LEO and you have to deploy combat tactics like
those being being referred to in this thread in a "blue" state, don't
worry too much, you and your attacker can finish the fight in the "yard" at the county lock-up with a large, cheering audience
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Old March 23, 2012, 10:53 PM   #57
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I know you guys have seen this...
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Old March 23, 2012, 10:54 PM   #58
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I'm still not entirely sure what rule #4 in the OP even means...
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Old March 23, 2012, 11:08 PM   #59
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After 28 years in Law Enforcement, and many of them as a trainer, and firearms instructor, the most important item that I have not seen on the lists, (old eyes, I could have missed it. is "a WINNING MINDSET. Determining that you are going to WIN at all costs, and go home at the end of the day is paramount. I have instilled this mindset in many of my officers before retiring. I will not let some scumbag win, I will do whatever is necessary to survive. This mindset will cause you to wear your body armor, train, study tactical scenarios, learn to shoot tactically, etc. Like I used to tell the kids in the police academy in the first couple of days, the most important tool you have is your BRAIN.
PS, this should apply to anyone who is a CCW holder with certain adjustments.

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Old March 25, 2012, 02:47 PM   #60
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Keep it simple.
jgcoastie got it right IMO. When training something as 'primal' as survival, keep your training simple. If I can throw my two scents in as far as the presentation go, break it up into sections and consolidate your points. Day time/night time, casualties/no casualties, open terrain vs. close quarter and the like. Elaborate a little, then train train and train some more. Classroom time is great but when you look for 101 points, much of the useful information will be lost in translation. Don't be vague, but get the simple things established, point out whats right/wrong, and let the questions from the trainees flow. I can't tell you how many times a 'boot' got flustered over something like a simple patrol formation because insignificant points were stressed.

"Powerpoint makes us stupid"
-General James Mattis.

Also, I agree with War Elephant. The winning mindset has been around for a long time. Theres a reason for famous prewar speeches. One more thing I'd like to add that I've noticed with many LEO's, is physical conditioning. While in the military, I was never a PT stud. But looking at some LEO's, they really need to hit the gym. When you start getting shot at, everything in your body goes into overdrive. This will greatly hinder your ability to move and mentally handle a situation if not physically able to do so in normal conditions. Not being in some sort of decent shape is pretty big sign of not being in the right mindset. I realize not every agency is a SWAT team, but if you're in a position to carry a gun and be responsible for your life as well as others, I'd think this would be of some sort of priority to an agency.
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Last edited by Maximus856; March 25, 2012 at 02:56 PM.
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Old March 26, 2012, 08:13 PM   #61
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You guys are confusing me. What's wrong with "shoot him before he shoots me"?
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Old March 26, 2012, 08:57 PM   #62
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If they have numerical superiority, minimize the angles of fire they have.
In other words maneuver to where they are in a line with you so the rearmost cannot shoot through their own guy(s) at you and you are effectively one on one.

If you have numerical superiority maximize the angle up to 90 degrees (full crossfire). Accomplish this and they are dead unless you run out of ammo before you hit them.
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Old March 27, 2012, 02:05 PM   #63
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Top ten list for surviving a gunfight
Get a copy of Jeff Cooper's "Principles of Personal Defense" It is a 42 page booklet published by Paladin Press. Mine is copyrighted 1972.

Therein he explains seven principles of the Combat Mindset.
1. Alertness
2. Decisiveness
3. Aggressiveness
4. Speed
5. Coolness
6. Ruthlessness
7. Surprise

Although Cooper does not use the term Combat Mindset in this essay, he later does come to use it. This essay is not one of technique. As he states in his foreword: "But the subject of this work is more basic than technique, being a study of the guiding principles of survival in the face of unprovoked violence on the part of extra-legal, human assailants."

The Combat Mindset includes many things, but it comes down to taking immediate decisive action in counter-attack when you are attacked.
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Old March 27, 2012, 07:07 PM   #64
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A lot of information and good thoughts. Following is the best comment I have ever read.

Murphy's Rules of Combat
Never share a foxhole with anyone braver than you.

If the enemy is in range, so are you.

Don't look conspicuous -- it draws fire.

There is always a way.

Try to look unimportant -- they may be low on ammo.

Professionals are predictable -- it's the amateurs that are dangerous.

The enemy invariably attacks on one of two occasions:
1. When you're ready for them.
2. When you're not ready for them.

Teamwork is essential; it gives the enemy someone else to shoot at.

Radios will fail as soon as you desperately need fire support.

If you can't remember, the claymore is pointed at you.

If your attack is going well, you have walked into an ambush.

When you are short of everything but enemy, you're in contact.

Don't draw fire. It irritates the people around you.

The only thing more accurate than incoming enemy fire is incoming friendly fire.

Incoming fire has the right of way.

When the pin is pulled, Mr. Grenade is not our friend.

When in doubt, empty the magazine.

Tracers work both ways.

Recoiless rifles ...aren't.

Suppressive fires ...won't.

Friendly fire ...isn't.

Anything you do can get you shot -- including doing nothing.

Make it too tough for the enemy to get in and you can't get out.

Mines are equal opportunity weapons.

The easy way is always mined.

Don't ever be the first, don't ever be the last, and don't ever volunteer to do anything.

The quartermaster has only two sizes: too large and too small.

Five second fuses only last three seconds.

It is generally inadvisable to eject directly over the area you just bombed.

The enemy diversion you have been ignoring will be the main attack.

A "sucking chest wound" is nature's way of telling you to slow down.

When you have secured an area, don't forget to tell the enemy.

Never forget that your weapon is made by the lowest bidder.

No OPLAN ever survives the first contact.

A Purple Heart just proves that you were smart enough to think of a plan, stupid enough to try it, and lucky enough to survive.

If it's stupid but works, it isn't stupid.

I belive this is not copyrighted material. The source is below:
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Old March 28, 2012, 03:40 PM   #65
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How much time do you have to provide this training?

Is it going to be classroom, range or both?

Is it a weapons class? Tactics class? Strategy class? Mindset class? Proficiency assessment/update class?

Is someone from higher up going to insert something at the last minute?

Is it going to be accredited as annual training (or whatever your POST equivalent might be)? Need to a pre-test & post-test?

You know the group of people you're going to be working with, we don't. Are there any specific perceived needs that have been expressed by any of your folks recently? Any shootings? Ambushes? Injured cops from an arrest? Any incidents that have highlighted some perceived need to be addressed?

Remember that you're going to have to provide useful and easily learned info that can be absorbed by the "least common denominator". Unless you're teaching a SWAT or special enforcement unit, don't teach to that audience. The least capable (and interested) person ought to be able to leave the training area and apply things you've taught.

Here in CA we have something POST has been doing called Instructor Development. The basic class is only a week long, but it teaches many things necessary to teach adults. Differences in learning styles, etc. It also emphasizes creating student involvement when it comes to students becoming participants group teaching dynamics. Useful for classroom environments, especially since it can help you pull out useful experiences that may be found within your student audience to the benefit of all students. Increases learning effectiveness. Increases student interest.

Be prepared to take whatever list of topics you'd like to cover ... and then cut it by 70% in order to create a practical teaching environment within the time constraints you're ultimately given.

Retired LE - firearms instructor & armorer
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Old March 28, 2012, 07:18 PM   #66
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Top ten list for surviving a gunfight

1. Always maintain cool, sweaty palms, panic, etc. ....not an option.
2. Be aware of: front, back, flanks, and assailants' weapons.
3. Shoot the heaviest caliber you can shoot accurately, meaning at least a 1" group at 7 yards.
4. Never give weapon up, never surrender, even if perp has knife to hostage's throat, even if perp has drop on you...clear the holster to 1st shot in under half a second...Bill Jordan could do this, so can you.
5. Shoot accurately: single/double for 45 ACP, doubles for 40 S&W, triples or more for smaller calibers.
6. Shoot one-handed, you need the other hand.
7. If facing a single attacker, always move to attacker's weak side.
8. If facing multiple attackers, shoot leader first, then anyone with a long gun.
9. Always move, zig-zag to/from hard cover, unpredictability is good, be a ghost.
10. Retreat is OK, just do it like Rommel.

Fight hard, good luck, and
check your 6.
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