AmPart: Living Off the Land – Gardening

JohnyMac at American Partisan is starting a series of articles on living off the land. His first installment is on the topic of gardening.

…This series of articles will cover gardening, protein raising, spirits making, among other fun things that you and your group will need to do to survive. Since we are now in harvesting time the first item will be about gardening.

I know the topic of gardening isn’t as exciting as the new XYZ carbine review however, if you think you are going to survive a job loss, economic downturn or even a SHTF scenario without food you are truly mistaken…

Let’s first talk about hitting the mountains and living off the land, ala Jeremiah Johnson. I will use my AO area as an example because it is truly rural.

We are located in a small hamlet surrounded by thousands and thousands of miles of woods among mountains and more mountains. The town of 500 or so is about 5-miles away and the residents are made up of farmers, blue collar workers, retired, and unfortunately living off Uncle Sugar too. If things went south everybody would be hunting and fishing. You must ask yourself, “how long would the critters living in these mountains last?” I remember one of the old timers here telling me that the deer and bear really didn’t come back into these hills in any kind of quantities post the Great Depression until the late 1960’s.

Once the deer, bears, and other four-legged critters were hunted out what will one do? …How many of us could gather the needed vegetables from the surrounding area? Once someone learns that you can eat cat-tail roots everybody will be digging around the ponds in the area. Again, how long will cat-tail roots last before they go the way of the game.

My point is that you nor your family will not survive. Therefore we have a garden. Not just for food today, but to practice growing food tomorrow…

Our garden is approximately 1,800 sf and is made up of raised beds with seedlings, and seeds planted directly into the tilled ground. The research that I have done is it takes about 900 sf at our latitude per person to grow enough veggies for one person. The current goal is to grow 80% of the veggies that we eat within a year. The best to that goal has been 70% due in part to the fact the vegetable garden is self-tending. We do not spend a lot of time weeding, watering, or general maintenance. I know though that if our garden was the only source of food, we would be in that garden every day weeding and doing general maintenance…

Click here to read the rest of the article at American Partisan.

Related:

Gardening KNow How: Survival Garden How To

Vegetable Gardening with Lorraine: Survival Gardening

AskAPrepper: Post Apocalypse Gardening

John Mosby: Guerrilla Gardening

John Mosby: Permaculture

AmPart: Forming a Community Survival Group

A new writer for American Partisan, using the pseudonym Gray Man, has written a brief introductory article to Forming a Community Survival Group. The Gray Man is Southern born and raised, a Christian American family man, an Army combat veteran (OEF) and former intelligence collector. He is currently an ER nurse and a homesteader living in the rural Deep South.

In the events that are coming, whether it’s an economic collapse, a major natural disaster, societal breakdown, or any other unpleasantness, being part of a solid group of people is going to be your best bet to get through. Studying the work of “Selco” (Yugoslavia), Fernando “FerFal” Aguirre (Argentina) and others who have actually been through a modern economic/societal collapse is invaluable because it shows us an example of what a modern societal collapse may actually look like here. Preppers and survivalists will always be able to come up with ideas of what things are going to be like, but unless those ideas are based on events that have already taken place somewhere, they’re less likely to be accurate. Studying those past events, it becomes clear that people who are part of a cohesive group survive the best, and the groups with some semblance of a plan to begin with will fare even better. While it’s true that no good plan ever survived the first enemy contact, having a solid plan for your group fosters confidence in that group, allowing the members to keep their head in the game when the going gets tough, and drive toward an objective.

When building your survival/partisan/neighborhood security group, you’ve got to tailor your group to your objective, situation and capability. What are you building a group to do? What size group is practical for your situation and location? How many people can you actually find to join? I am currently located in the rural Deep South, a few miles outside of a town of about 300 people. Am I going to build a battalion-sized survival group that will save the U.S. from the Communist threat?

Don’t hold your breath, mate. That’s not realistic…

Click here to read the entire article at American Partisan.

American Partisan: First Aid in a Wilderness Setting

American Partisan has a two part article on wilderness first aid by former combat medic.

First Aid in a Wilderness Setting, Part I

Wilderness First Aid, Part II

After having a Positive Mental Attitude to survive, and once you’ve located Shelter, the next on the list of priorities is First Aid. This will likely be in a wilderness environment. Just so we can put a label on this, lets look at some definitions.

Wilderness is defined as “An uncultivated, and inhospitable region.”

First Aid is defined as “help given to a sick or injured person until full medical treatment is available.”

I’ll go a step further with defining this by saying wilderness, medically speaking, is an hour or more from the time the incident occurred, to treatment in a definitive care facility. Wilderness First Aid is also all about Improvising. We often can’t lug around an ALS ambulance with us or pack our gear with with the contents of a paramedic’s trauma bag. We can take minimal supplies and the rest is improvising. We can splint a leg fracture or configure a c-collar with a sleeping pad. We can use a bandana as a trauma dressing.

In a wilderness medical setting as well as the urban setting, we can categorize our patient as either Medical or Trauma. A medical patient in my experience as a former Combat Medic and Wilderness EMT seems to be more subjective, which means they tell you what’s wrong with them more than you can see it objectively. With trauma, it’s the opposite. A person who crashes their mountain bike on a trail and has an open fracture to an arm is pretty self-explanatory.

S-A-B-A

S-A-B-A stands for “Self-Aid / Buddy-Aid”. Self-Aid sounds easy when we know how we feel and pretty much know we crashed a bike or twisted an ankle on the trail. Except for that, we might have to perform some functions with only one hand, reduced or no vision, and not being able to move around because of trauma to our bodies. I would emphasize to practice applying a dressing & bandage to yourself with the use of one arm or blindfolded. This can be done while sitting on the couch watching TV. Buddy Aid is being able to medically assist another person…

Related:

American Partisan: The Partisan’s First-Aid Kit

American Partisan: Home Brew – NVIS Antenna

Johny Mac at American Partisan has an article up at American Partisan on making your own NVIS antenna. A near-vertical incidence skywave (NVIS) antenna is used in the high frequency (HF) spectrum from around 1.8MHz to  10MHz in order to cover an approximate radius/range of 300 miles. HF is usually used for long distance communication around the world, and most antennas are built to maximize range, but those antennas can often cause the radio signal to skip or make a gap in the range from about fifty to three hundred miles.  The NVIS antenna redirects the radio signal in such a way that it covers that gap at the sacrifice of the longer distance contacts. This makes the NVIS antenna ideal for communications during a regional disaster.

If you do not know what a NVIS antenna is and why it is a great addition to your antenna farm, go and read these four articles. The first being from NC Scout titled, Near Vertical Incidence Skywave – Simplified, then NVIS I, NVIS II, and NVIS III authored by Key Pounder and published on NC Scout’s site, Brushbeater.

At a 100,000-foot level though, a NVIS antenna is a dipole antenna that has a steeper transmit angle than a traditional horizontal flat-top dipole antenna and is located closer to the ground at between 8 to 15-feet Vs. a traditional 1/4λ height; let’s say 30 to 60-feet over tera firma. This allows you to transmit to other stations closer to your AO that you may skip over using a flat-top horizontal dipole antenna. Think of the skip bounced off the ‘F’ layer of the ionosphere being 25 to 50-miles Vs. 200 to 300-miles. The German Army developed this procedure during WW II to communicate with troops via the airwaves closer to the transmitting station.

Traditional dipole antenna radiation Vs. NVIS radiation

I started out building my NVIS antenna using the directions posted on the DX Engineeringsite as my blue-prints for the project. Although you can buy a kit from DX Engineering, I had plenty of hardware around the redoubt so I decided to save a few bucks. Below is my Mise en place for this build. Hams are the true scroungers of this earth…

Click here to read the entire article at American Partisan.

AmPart: Directional Antennas for the Small Unit, Part I and II

NC Scout at American Partisan has started a series of articles on antenna theory called Directional Antennas for the Small Unit. If you’re just getting started in radio communication, or you’ve been using it for a while but haven’t spent much time getting to know your antennas, this is a good start.

Directional Antennas For The Small Unit, Part 1

One of the biggest misconceptions behind communications security revolves around misunderstanding not just the role of the equipment but also how it functions. A big part of that is the basics of antenna theory. For most radio seems to be a plug and play kinda deal- it either works, or it doesn’t. Antennas are a type of voodoo magic and the solution to security is electronic encryption. Except it isn’t, and doesn’t do anything except mask what you’re saying, but not the fact you’re saying it. Guerrillas must rely on not being detected- and no matter how high tech you think you are, it’ll not solve a tradecraft issue.

The reality is that we’ll be working with equipment that is common and off the shelf- no matter how much we want those microwave NSA-encrypted troposcatter radios made of unobtanium, a big part of local networking is done via plain old VHF and UHF amateur and commercial gear that’s common. Guerrilla communications have to be harder to detect. And at the strategic level when building an underground network, you have to understand how to plan. Even with the cheap equipment most of you likely have, incorporating a level of planning into your local communications will yield a much higher level of security and success. Knowing and understanding directional antennas becomes a key part of that planning, and as we cover in the Advanced RTO Course, there’s several options that each get the job done.

Directional Antennas such as this Yagi seen here offer security by ‘beaming’ our transmission in the direction its pointed.

Directional antennas accomplish two goals for us. First, generally speaking, if you’re not in the direction of the transmission you’re not going to hear the traffic. Because of this it offers a big advantage in the security department. If two directional antennas are transmitting toward one another, they’ll be able to communicate with the only people hearing the full conversation being in the middle of the two people. The second advantage is that instead of all our energy going in all directional at once, as with an omnidirectional antenna, a directional antenna sends the same amount of radiated energy in one direction- greatly increasing our range and signal strength in that direction, so we won’t need nearly as much power to accomplish to reliably communicate over a distance you might not have thought otherwise possible…

 

Click here to read the entire article at American Partisan.

Click here to read Part II at American Partisan.

AmPart: Illegal Immigrant: a Powerful 4th Generation Warrior

Bryce Sharper at American Partisan has an article up, positing that illegal immigrants from Latin America have become a weapon of powerful elites – The Latin American Illegal Immigrant: a powerful 4th Generation Warrior.

When viewed through the lens of 4GW, the illegal immigrant is one of the most powerful warriors on earth though he does not use much overt violence. His primary weapon is weakness, which is the biggest weapon a 4th Generation warrior can have because it gathers him numerous allies from our decadent culture without him having to do any work at all. This is a seeming contradiction: he is weak but powerful. His weakness is socioeconomic. His country is poor and he wants to come to America “for a better life.” He smiles meekly at the American jefes who hire him. He shows up on time and will work dirty and dangerous jobs without complaining. His poor wife is constantly pushing around another nino in the baby carriage. Sure, he commits some crime here and there, but it’s managed by local police. His other weakness is that he is a Person of Color which means he’s a member of The Oppressed in the cultural Marxist worldview. He supposedly doesn’t speak English well enough to understand police and therefore isn’t expected to follow our laws so he is punished lightly. Because these weaknesses, he is not considered a threat by anyone of importance so nothing is done about him. Quite the contrary, he is a great asset to rich, powerful, and upwardly-mobile liberals and pseudoconservatives who need him.

Americans overwhelmingly want the borders closed and the illegals kicked out.  By “overwhelmingly,” I mean the bottom 3/5ths of wage earners whose pay hasn’t risen in 20-30 years along with upwardly-mobile small business owning legal immigrants and conservative upper-middle class and rich Americans…

Click here to read the entire article.

AmPart: Caching with PVC

NC Scout at American Partisan has a short article up on Caching with PVC. You may be caching things at a favorite camping spot, remote cabin, bug out location, practicing geocaching, or for another reason. Here’s how to keep it safe and find it again when you need it.

Caching With PVC

PVC is one of those things no survivalist or prospective guerrilla should be without. It’s one of the most versatile items you can have around a retreat, being used for everything and anything including hydroponics, water routing and storage, shelter frames and even in one case from a student in the RTO Course, a ladder rack on his truck. It was really cool- and really well done. But one of the most common uses I have for PVC tubing is making caches for anything from weapons, ammunition and communications support items to basic sustainment items like extra knives, fire making tools, ponchos and tarps or medical items. There’s a right way and a wrong way to do it though, and it’s not as simple is stuffing things in a tube.

One of the big advantages of using PVC is its simplicity. With a larger diameter pipe, a rounded end cap and a screw-in cleanout cap you’ve got a basic water resistant tube that can virtually disappear anywhere. You can find the smaller sizes at any Lowe’s, Home Depot, or ACE Hardware, but the larger diameters you’ll need to hit up the local plumbing supply store.

But with that said, caching with PVC in the long term is a little more complicated than it looks. Storage of anything for extended periods requires some care and a little more work than just stuffing things in a tube. And while we’re talking about DIY canisters, I follow the same rules for any cache container.

Waterproofing

Caches do us no good if they can’t seal out the elements….

Click here to read the entire article at American Partisan.

Related:

Survivopedia: Survival Caching

Skilled Survival: How to Build, Plan and Bury a Survival Cache

TC 31-29 Special Forces Caching Techniques

Survival School: Alternative to Buried Survival Caches

Greywolf Survival: How to Plan Where to Place Survival Caches

SHTFPlan: How to Hide and Recover Your Survival Cache

AmPart: A Practical Approach to a Neighborhood Defense Plan

Noell Bishop of Bishop 30 Solutions has written a brief introduction at American Partisan on A Practical Approach to a Neighborhood Defense Plan.  If you find that you are interested in more detail on this topic, you can try to get your hands on a copy of A Failure of Civility  (or via pdf[98MB]) by Mike Garand and Jack Lawson which goes into detail on organizing neighborhood protection teams. It is hard to find these days, but AMP-3 still had some copies last I checked.

Before we dive into the subject of Neighborhood Defense, I thought I would share with you some of my experiences that lend to my thoughts on the matter. Although I have actually studied the subject I have had some events that have been very beneficial to me on the subject.

In 2005, I was a DEA agent assigned to the Houston Field Division in Houston, Texas. Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans that year. Myself and two other agents along with members of our air wing based out of Houston responded just after the hurricane had passed. What I saw and what I was told to do was somewhat over whelming to say the least. As a reservist, I had already participated in the 2003 invasion of Iraq and, to be honest, what I saw in New Orleans was worse because it was in the United States. Growing up, I had always heard it said that “no matter what, we Americans will stick together.” Well, I’m here to tell you that could not be farthest from the truth there in New Orleans. I’m not going to tell a bunch of war stories but let’s just say I used more of my Army Special Forces training than law enforcement training. When developing a Neighborhood Defense plan, I kind of equate it to a guerrilla base when things get really bad out there. So for that, I draw from my days in training at the JFK Special Warfare Center and School attending the Special Forces Officer Qualification Course and the Unconditional Warfare phase, Guerrilla Base Operations, and my time at Robin Sage and other sources.

Let’s start this by identifying what the possible threats are that would lend us to need a Neighborhood Defense plan…

Click here to read the entire article at American Partisan.

In regards to Bishop’s statements above about the conditions in New Orleans post-Katrina, I recently heard another speaker, also former military with several years of duty under fire and also deployed to New Orleans/Katrina, make very similar comments about the horrible conditions there.

American Partisan: Making the “Lightning”

JC Dodge has an article up at American Partisan about keeping your batteries for various important devices charged up when you can’t just plug in an AC adapter –Making The “Lightning” For Your Force Multipliers.

Making The “Lightning” For Your Force Multipliers
Winter ruckin'16

Charging the large fold up solar unit on top of my pack in the field.

Since the 90’s, I’ve carried a small solar charger for AA batteries in my kit. This was for keeping certain devices I had, like flashlights and PVS-7 NOD’s, operating in the field when there was no chance to get new batteries or charge the rechargeables I had on household 110 system. I started using CR123 batteries in the early 2000’s when I bought an IR laser that used a single 123 battery, and shortly after, I upgraded my weapons light to a two celled, CR123 powered, Surefire.

Solar post07

The DBAL and Surefire light on this M1A Socom both use CR123 batteries

THE PROBLEM

The use of CR123 batteries put a gap in my preps because, at that time, no one was selling 123 rechargeables. Oh well, guess when they’re done, the IR laser and Surefire is done, right? I made sure I bought a lot of CR123’s for storage. Back in 2013 I found CR123 rechargeables that were made by a company called Tenergy, and I’ve been using them ever since. The caveat to using Tenergy 123’s is that their charge is a little higher than a normal CR123’s 3.2 Volts and two together will burn out a standard Surefire bulb immediately upon hitting the switch (ask me how I know…). No problem, I also ordered some programmable bulbs for my lights and I was back in business.

Last year I decided to get with the times and see if I could come up with alternative charging means to recharge not only my AA’s and CR123’s, but also my 9 Volt batteries for my laser range finder and heat (game) detector. My FLIR 24 which has an internal battery and recharges via micro USB also needed a way to get a boost in the field…

Click here to read the rest of the story at American Partisan.

AmPart: Medical Q&A Webinar, March 3, 2019

American Partisan‘s Reasonable Rascal, a medic and registered nurse, will be hosting a two-hour webinar to answer your questions about medical preparedness. The class is limited to only nine participants, so register early.

We’re offering another Q&A webinar on Sunday, March 3 for those interested in SHTF medicine. If you have questions about your medical preps to include medications, what to do in case of a specific type of SHTF emergency, or even how to set up various medical bags for specific needs, this is the one you’ll want to attend.

It’s two hours long, and there are only 9 seats available so that we can keep the discussion on point and ensure that everyone can get their questions answered. This is a casual discussion in which you can ask whatever medical questions you want pertaining to prepping, SHTF medicine, etc. With such a small discussion size, you’re certain to get a great deal out of it.

Running the discussion will be highly experienced medic and registered nurse Reasonable Rascal. He’s one of our newer staff members, but he isn’t new to medicine or to online discussion. He’s been running a serious, successful medical forum for several years, and together with several doctors and other medical professionals, co-wrote Survival and Austere Medicine, now in its 3rd edition.

DATE: Sunday, March 3, 2019
TIME: 8pm Eastern (7pm Central, 6pm Mountain, 5pm Pacific)
VENUE: Online webinar

The price for attending is $25. That covers the webinar cost for us and allows us to pay Rascal a little something for his time. You can register by either sending Paypal to info@americanpartisan.org or sending cash/check/money order to:

610 N. 1st St 5-209
Hamilton, MT 59840

Remember, there are only 9 seats, so get in while you can!

 

AmPart: A 4th Generation Warfare Reading List

Bryce Sharper over at American Partisan has a very nicely annotated reading list on Fourth Generation Warfare – A 4GW Reading List. Fourth-generation warfare (4GW) is the name given to modern warfare which blurs the lines between war and politics, and combatants and civilians. It may also be used for any type of war in which one of the major combatants is a non-state actor. Revolutions and insurgencies, as well as much other modern violent conflict, can fall under the 4GW umbrella. As Bryce points out in his reading list, the drug trade in the USA can be viewed as a 4GW conflict. Here I’ve excerpted the first three books on his list.

As the nation-state system goes through its death throes, our own government has admitted that the world is undergoing “Lebanonization.”  For no other reason than that, I think it’s a good idea to understand 4th-Generation warfare in all its forms.  Personally, I felt most of my officer training was useless for war in the world of the declining nation-state, so this topic is of academic interest to me.  In each of these books, question the assumptions and correlate the assumption with those of other authors.  These books are not ranked in order.

  1. Victoria by Bill Lind. A novel about 4th generation war in the United States.  Regardless of what you believe about its premises, it’s an excellent, thought-provoking read about the establishment of insurgency, legitimacy, and prosecution of 4th-generation war in various regions of the former United States.  It has excellent summaries of key ideas of military strategists (Moltke, et al) and philosophers (the Frankfurt School) that influenced the outbreak of insurgency in the United States, for good or bad.  Lind gives an excellent definition of strategy in Victoria from one of Boyd’s talks. He said strategy is the art of connecting yourself to as many other power centers as possible, while separating your enemy from as many power centers as possible.
  2. American Insurgents; American Patriots by Breen. It examines the countryside insurgency that evicted the British occupation from the countryside and bottled it up in the cities.  The interesting thing was the way the insurgency established a larger organization among the 13 colonies and avoided anarchy and established legitimacy. I’m halfway through.  This book is a slog but gives the background of one of the few insurgencies run by good people to good results.  Most insurgencies are by bad people towards bad results.
  3. The Fangs of the Lone Wolf: Chechen tactics in the Russian-Chechen wars 1994-2009. The forward states that “what is lacking in the literature about the guerrilla perspective are collections of the combat experiences of the rank and file guerrillas and their tactical leaders. These people seldom leave written records, yet theirs are often the most interesting accounts.” This book contains stories from rank-and-file guerrillas…

Click here to read the entire article and see the rest of reading list.

AmPart: Wargaming Dangers to Your Area

NC Scout is full of useful information, and luckily he is willing to share that information with us all. In his post Situational Awareness and Wargaming Your AO, NC Scout gives us a short explanation about how to about thinking over how critical infrastructure in your area could be attacked. He’s particular interested in communication infrastructure, but the same targeting process can be used toward anything.

The most important questions you should be asking right now are not the hypothetical or abstract simply naming ‘SHTF!’, rather, it needs to be rationally rooted in the MOST LIKELY and MOST DEADLY courses of action (MLCOA / MDCOA). What causes this “SHTF?” Who will be taking advantage of it? One of the overtones of my recent classes has been discussing the growing local antifa movement and (somewhat) wargaming/red celling capabilities, with emergency services communications systems coming into question. Think on that one for a second. It’s a dangerous proposition that many overlook- there’s a real threat to the robustness of emergency service equipment and as we become more and more complex, they become more and more vulnerable. From my perspective, this makes understanding and maintaining my own off-grid communications and action networks that much more important. And it should you too…

This is not some overseas and out of mind terror group. This is Antifa in the US. And they’ve built a cadre of combat vets from their time fighting in Rojava. What have you been doing?

.Building independent, self-sustaining communities is paramount, as well as being the strongest survivalist plan, but its important to recognize that threats are more than just simplistic catch phrases. You still live in the real world, not that lustful libertariatopia, and are subject to the ramifications of threats external to you. I take people at their word- and the Left’s core, the ‘instant gratification‘ groomed social justice warriors, a manifestation of all of the fingers that threaten Western Sovereignty- are the future of their movement. They see no benefit to the current order and through willful ignorance find solace amid revolutionary ideals whose only logical end is violence. I believe them. And instead of useless projecting, you should be asking serious questions about what they’re capable of pulling off. I bet some folks in Nigeria today wished they had done a bit more in retrospect. I’d be willing to bet some of you will too- Antifa thugs, Islamic thugs, same types of people. They both want you, Christian Male, exterminated.

What to do now is get serious about a training schedule while spending some time understanding more about your individual area. There’s a lot of opportunities out there, and the more arrows you put in the quiver the more resilient you’ll be later on down the road.

Read the entire article at American Partisan by clicking here.

AmPart: How to Motivate Your Group Volunteers

Kit Perez has a good article up at American PartisanHow to Motivate Your Group Volunteers. It doesn’t matter if your group is a prepper group, a church group, a hobby club, or any other group of volunteers, you’ve probably heard “You can’t expect volunteers to…” or “We don’t want to lose anyone…” as an excuse for not getting something done. Kit addresses these issues and more.

We’ve all been there, in a group where 2-3 people are motivated, working, and “all in,” only to find themselves carrying the rest of the members. It’s one reason why you’ll also hear some folks brag about “not playing well with others” or telling you how they plan to “go it alone.” Fancying themselves some kind of lone wolf in an overly romaticized notino of what a SHTF event actually looks like, they plan to be a cross between Rambo and Tom Hanks in Cast Away. All they need is a volleyball to name Wilson.

The cold, hard reality is that you cannot survive a SHTF event — whether it be a natural disaster, a man-made one, or some other kind of societal meltdown — without help from others. Neighbors, group members, whatever. Which brings us to the obvious problem: What do you do with slackers in your group? How can you motivate them?

The Volunteer Mentality

Part of what you’re up against is the volunteer mentality. In essence, it consists of people saying things like, “well, we’re volunteers. You can’t expect us to ___________ when we aren’t getting paid.” You may also hear people whispering in your ear that because people are volunteers, if you push them too hard they will leave. “We need bodies,” they’ll say. A body, any body, is better than no bodies…or so the conventional wisdom goes.

There are a few problems with that mindset, however, and here are a few concepts I personally hold to when looking at group members for myself, or helping other groups in a consulting capacity…

Every single member of your group should have a task and a purpose. If they don’t, they are merely takers…

Click here to read the entire article at American Partisan.

American Partisan: The Jungle Antenna Revisted

NC Scout at American Partisan has written another article discussing the jungle antenna – The Jungle Antenna Revisited: Task and Purpose for the Partisan and Prepper. NC Scout has written about this antenna and its usefulness previously.

Going back to the early days of the Brushbeater blog, the Jungle Antenna post has been and continues to be one of the more popular posts I’ve done. And for good reason- I wrote it to be used. It’s the antenna every student in the RTO course builds and one of the designs they get hands on with, and it’s the one that they know works from the demonstrations we do with them. But often, as with everything, a context for the task and purpose has to be clarified.

Many preppers who contact me fall into a similar trap. I have a goal and recognize a need. What can I buy that does for me what I want it to do? How do I do this in the most cost-effective way? And finally (but what should be first) how do I obtain the skill to best use the gear I’ve purchased? It’s a problematic point of view for a lot of reasons but one I get frequenct questions about nonetheless. And that’s ok. I’ll normally answer it the same way- Use your stuff. Learn to use it even better, and never stop!

One of my objectives bak then, as it remains in my classes and writing today, was emphasizing the skill of building your own equipment…

Click here to read the entire article at American Partisan.

American Partisan: SIGINT for Everyone

NC Scout at American Partisan has an informative article up, Signals Intelligence: Capabilities for Anyone, discussing readily available and simple equipment that anyone can use to build their signals intelligence capabilities. Signals intelligence is one of the best, if not the best, ways to know what is going on around you, whether that is in the aftermath of a disaster or during a civil disturbance/conflict.

One of the points I’ve stressed for a long time is the value found in using simple equipment to the maximum of its potential. Whatever it might be optics to weapons to electronics, my own combat experience has fostered an appreciation for Keeping it Simple, Stupid. And that’s the very paradigm I teach my class from–taking what’s common and simple to understand and learning the techniques of using it to its peak potential. The same is true for building signals intelligence capabilities among preppers and/or potential partisans. Not that long ago the RAND Corporation published a white paper on the very topic; what they found was that not only does the capability exist to monitor most real-world threats in any given environment, anyone can do it.

During our market scan, we found examples of SIGINT capabilities outside of government that are available to anyone. The capabilities we found have applications in maritime domain awareness; radio frequency (RF) spectrum mapping; eavesdropping, jamming, and hijacking of satellite communications; and cyber surveillance. Most of these capabilities are commercially available, many are free, and some are illegal. In our view, the existence of both legal and illegal markets and capabilities results in an environment where SIGINT has been democratized, or available to anyone.

(Weinbaum, Berner and McClintock, 2017)

From experience monitoring the Taliban on a decade old Radio Shack Pro-96 in Afghanistan, an undisciplined adversary will usually tell you everything you want to know over the air. Even if he thinks he’s secure with electronic encryption, the presence of the signal itself can be detected as soon as he keys up. After working with several private groups and teaching techniques to not get found in my RTO Course, I can positively say that a lot of people are at a distinct disadvantage in the communications department not through equipment but through a complete misunderstanding of the actual function of their gear. As anyone who’s trained with me knows, tactical communications is a whole other animal from nearly everything folks think they know. The first rule of Signals Counterintelligence is to have a competent plan and not set patterns. But what about collection? Those same mistakes we aim to correct through training are likely to be repeated by the opposing force. Even if they have all the technical enables in the world, a lot can be done with basic equipment…

Click here to read the entire article.

Related:

Sparks 31: Low Level Voice Intercept

Sparks 31: Indicator Frequencies