Journal of Non-lethal Combatives
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Announcements (December 2004)

Current developments in less lethal weapons include the directed energy weapon known as the Active Denial System. Basically, this is a microwave device that makes your skin feel as if it's being burned. For more information, see http://www.de.afrl.af.mil/factsheets/activedenial.html and http://www.nytimes.com/2004/07/25/magazine/25WEAPONS.html?pagewanted=1&ei=5070&en=0e7ad9a97b1e878f&ex=1100235600. According to the November 2004 Marine Corps Gazette, prototypes have been sent to Iraq for testing.

Meanwhile, the US Army tested M26 TASER weapons in Iraq, and the feedback led to the fielding of a rail device that allows the smaller X26 TASER to be mounted beneath the barrel of an M4 carbine. For a discussion, see http://www.wood.army.mil/MPBULLETIN/pdfs/April%2004%20pdfs/barbour-TASER.pdf. The idea of putting less-lethal capability on assault weapons sounds great to a generation that grew up hearing Captain Kirk ordering Spock to set the phasers on stun. However, flick the wrong switch, and Private Snuffy just shot a TASER at a barricaded sniper, or put a bullet into some drunk with an attitude. Therefore, I'm not sure if putting TASERS on assault weapons is truly a good idea, or whether it is instead simply another gee-whiz idea introduced by visiting Big Brains.


The Iraq war is also spurring developments in body armor. Current body armor is generally made from Spectra, a material that is stronger and lighter than Kevlar, and fitted with pockets that hold bullet-resistant boron carbide plates. See, for example, http://www.natick.army.mil/soldier/media/fact/individual/USMC_InterceptorOTV.htm, http://www.olive-drab.com/od_soldiers_gear_body_armor_interceptor.php, http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/systems/ground/interceptor.htm, http://www.savvysurvivor.com/interceptor_controversy.htm, and http://www.military.com/soldiertech/0,14632,Soldiertech_Armor,,00.html, and http://www.natick.army.mil/soldier/media/fact/individual/USMC_InterceptorSAPI.htm. Research continues, and I suspect that eventually, most clothing issued to soldiers and industrial workers will have significant fire and impact resistance. For more on this, see http://www.nationaldefensemagazine.org/article.cfm?Id=1551.


Finally, if you are curious about what man-portable tactical lasers are currently capable (and not capable) of doing, try Michael Naimark's "Using Lasers to Temporarily Neutralize Camera Sensors" at http://www.naimark.net/projects/zap/howto.html. As weapons, though, one still needs powerful vehicle-mounted lasers to achieve any significant battlefield advantage. See, for example, http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/library/budget/fy1999/dot-e/accessories/99nonmjr.html. A photo of the Saber 203 weapon described in the latter article appears at http://www.de.afrl.af.mil/Factsheets/saber203.html.

Announcements (November 2004)

A couple links of potential interest.

The first deals directly with non-lethal weapons. It's a bibliography, actually. See http://confidenz-depesche.com/download/stoa-bib.html. Sample citations include "Wargovitch, et al (1975) Evaluation of the Physiological Effects of a Rubber Bullet, A Baseball and a Flying Baton, US Army Engineering Laboratory, Technical Memo, Aberdeen Proving Ground, USA" and "Shimizu, T; Fujita, S; Izumi, K; Koja, T; Ohba, N; Fukuda, T (1984) Corneal lesions induced by the systemic administration of capsicum in neonatal mice and rats. Archives Pharmacology 326, pp. 347-51." The latter article is online at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Retrieve&db=PubMed&list_uids=6482983&dopt=Abstract.

The other deals with the unpleasant aftermath of non-lethal violence. It's a link to music therapy as a tool in treating the survivors of domestic violence. http://www.enterthefreudianslip.com/music_therapy_and_domestic_violence.htm

November 2003

"I never saw a single engagement where the skills provided by the martial arts program assisted our efforts during the [recent Iraq] war. Skills such as flex cuffing and body searching would have been handy, but I'd gladly have traded the 3 weeks of training time committed to martial arts for enhanced marksmanship training. I can't tell you how many times we had Marines firing on Marines, or Marines firing on Iraqis, only to hit air and dirt. Neither did I see a man doing dead hang pullups or any women Marines doing flex arm hangs. No one stopped to knock out 100 crunchies at any point, nor could you find anyone running 3 miles while engaged in combat. Perhaps it's time reevaluate how we measure our fitness levels, by incorporating high-intensity, short-distance sprints under moderate (50 lb.) loads, along with body manipulation events (such as getting gear-equipped body over obstacles and through windows)… The idea here is that we need to better focus our efforts during peacetime to enhance our abilities during war. The martial arts program and the current physical fitness program should be two starting points."

-- Chief Warrant Officer Jeffrey L. Eby, gunner for 7th Marine Regiment, writing in Marine Corps Gazette, October 2003, page 32.

Announcements (August 2003)

For links to articles about modern military helmets, go to http://www.sjvls.org/bens/, then click on -- you guessed it, "Modern Military Helmets." Readers might also be interested in the articles on other topics, such as Ferguson’s rifles and the Mexican Expeditionary Air Force service in the Pacific during World War II.

Announcements (July 2003)

If you’re looking for a new ride, check out http://www.saracen.org/. As for the price, if you have to ask, you can’t afford it. But, in case you were wondering, simply shooting the gun costs about $60 per second. At that price, I’d be recycling the brass, but hey, if you can afford a street legal Minigun (I just saw one advertised on the Internet for $300,000), probably you just shovel it over the side. For better pictures of the gun, see http://www.montysminiguns.com/RealityPage.htm.

At a more affordable level, check out the canes and batons at http://www.batoncanne.com.


The opposite of non-lethal operations is the Vietnam-era Phoenix program. See http://www.thememoryhole.org/phoenix/. Myself, I think that the Marines’ Combined Action Platoons a better chance of winning hearts and minds, but what do I know.

Announcements (May 2003)

As promised, information is provided regarding the new USMC bayonet.

USMC bayonet 2003

The weapon is 13.25" overall, with a blade length of 8". This is 1.5" longer than the current Ka-Bar knife or M-7 bayonet. The blade has been designed to penetrate standard Kevlar flak jackets, and the scabbard holds a sharpening stone. Total weight, with scabbard, is 21 ounces.


Announcements (April 2003)

No one denies that North American inner cities are violent places. For some recent data on this, see http://www.cnn.com/US/9901/02/murder.rate. For comparable data for Western European cities, see page 9 of http://www.justice.ie/802569B20047F907/vWeb/flDANN4WZN8N/$File/Homicide.pdf. However, next time that somebody tells you that the United States leads the world in homicides, ask them when Latin America became the 51st state. For example, Cali (Colombia) and Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) both have significantly higher homicide rates than any place in North America. For a discussion of homicide in Brazil, see http://www.ifb.com.br/english/documentos/mortality.pdf; for charts, see http://www.paho.org/English/HCP/HCN/VIO/violence-graphs.htm.

It is possible that the incidence of violent death has something to do with living in densely populated areas. However, if that is the case, then why do Montana and Manitoba have higher homicide rates than Minneapolis/St. Paul? (See http://teapot.usask.ca/cdn-firearms/Gov/morrison2.html.) Likewise, why do Australia’s Northern Territories have a higher homicide rate than Sydney? (See http://www.aic.gov.au/media/990211.html.) As for it all involving easy access to handguns, then how does one explain Fargo, North Dakota, where there are firearms in most homes, yet both homicide and suicide rates are among the lowest on earth?


We have all heard how body language delivers 60% of the meaning during face-to-face communication. Ever wondered where that datum originated? If so, check

Announcements (March 2003)

Among intelligent murderers, the mutilation of bodies, sexual sadism, and serial killing are often linked. And make no mistake about it, many murderers are intelligent – at least three of 22 Swedish homicides involving dismemberment of bodies involved medical doctors, and a fourth was committed by a veterinary student. See "Criminal Mutilation of the Human Body in Sweden – A Thirty-Year Medico-Legal and Forensic Psychiatric Study," at http://aafs.micronexx.com/PDF/JOFS/CH15563X/CH15563X.pdf.

By the way, sadistic homicides are most likely to happen during mid-summer, in areas where there are high population densities. In peacetime, these areas are of course big cities, but during wartime, everywhere the military or naval unit went would be an area of relatively high population density. This in turn may represent a partial explanation of the collections of scalps, ears, and penises often reported during wartime.

Meanwhile, as long as we’re on the topic of homoerotic mayhem, see also the article on nudity in ancient Greek athletics at http://www.aafla.org/SportsLibrary/JSH/JSH1985/JSH1203/jsh1203b.pdf. If the author is correct in his assertions, then is possible that the idea behind fighting nude, or nearly so, is so that everyone can see who gets an erection in the midst of mayhem, and who is peeing himself.

Announcements (February 2003)

In December 2002, the Marines announced that Ontario won the recent USMC bayonet trials. (The source document, M67854-02-R-3030, appeared at http://www.marcorsyscom.usmc.mil/sites/ctq/bayonet.asp.) Reportedly, the knife selected was the OKC Ultra. For a picture, see http://www.usmilitaryknives.com/Ont_Bayos.JPG.

People interested in such things will definitely like Frank Trzasca’s site, http://www.usmilitaryknives.com/index1.htm.


Colonel Carl Eifler died in 1992, aged 95. Eifler was involved in various hand-to-hand combat training programs in the Border Patrol before World War II, and in the OSS during the war. (Among other things, he was an early graduate of Camp X.) For some descriptions of the man and his contributions, see:

Announcements (January 2003)

According to an article in this month’s Marine Corp Gazette, written by Lt. Col. Kevin J. Nally, the Marine Corps Martial Art Program "is not about self-defense. It's not a dojo art; it's a weapons-based system that synergizes mental, character, and combative disciplines with the primary emphasis on mental and character development... If Marines accept the training and live up to the intent, the potential exists to generate and foster a Corps of martial and ethical warriors bound to the safety and welfare of their Marines."


If you have questions about what you can and cannot (or should not) say on cyberspace, try http://www.chillingeffects.org – it’s a site run by some law schools, and it’s dedicated to free speech on the Internet.


 Interested in reading about those thrilling days of yesteryear, when police weren’t paid overtime for working 10 hours a day, 6-7 days per week, police cars did not have light bars, and drivers were not legally drunk unless their blood alcohol content exceeded .15? Try the Utah Highway Patrol website, http://highwaypatrol.utah.gov/history. See also http://www.vsp.state.va.us/history.htm: "Jiujitsu" training in the Virginia State Police dates to 1941, while eight-hour work schedules date to 1952. However, the Virginia State Police did not adopt a five-day work schedule, until 1959, which was several years ahead of most Southern US police forces.

Announcements (December 2002)

Those of you who misplaced your July 1979 issue of Soldier of Fortune will be happy to see that William L. Cassidy’s article, "The Art of Silent Killing, WWII British Commando Style," now appears online at http://www.gutterfighting.org/cassidySK1.html.


RealFighting.com is in the process of publishing its fourth issue. There’s good stuff; check it out if you haven’t seen it before.


A booklet by Matt Cheung on the topic of krav maga appears at http://www.angelfire.com/art/maa/site/library/books/kravmaga.pdf.

Announcements (November 2002)

Some articles from Jane’s law enforcement archives that you might find interesting include http://www.janes.com/security/law_enforcement/news/ipi/ipi0306.shtml (on point shooting) and http://www.janes.com/security/law_enforcement/news/ipi/ipi0221.shtml (on tactical folding knives). By the way, you can buy Jane’s complete online law enforcement library for a mere US $9,450.


To learn more about Israeli special forces, try http://www.isayeret.com/main/guide.htm.

Announcements (October 2002)

 Those of you interested in US Army saber exercises should look at the following documents.

 1. War Department doctrine, 1914: http://www.pattonhq.com/saber.html (author: Lt. George S. Patton, Jr.). For photos and some additional explication by Lt. Patton, see also http://www.militaryhorse.org/studies/swords/patton_rpt.asp.

2. War Department doctrine, 1922: http://www.militaryhorse.org/studies/swords/tr50-70.asp

 As to what happened to those horse cavalry sabers, well, in 1942, they got sent to the Pacific, where they were cut down and used as machetes.

Announcements (September 2002)

According to General George S. Patton, "This individual heroic stuff is pure horse shit." For more of the general’s thoughts on combat, see http://www.pattonhq.com/speech.html. Parental guidance is suggested. Meanwhile, although it isn’t nearly as colorful as Patton’s speech, an FBI publication called "Controlling Subjects: Realistic Training vs. Magic Bullets," appears at http://www.fbi.gov/publications/leb/1997/feb974.htm.

Announcements (August 2002)

Martial art practitioners are often asked, "What martial art is best for self-defense?" The answer is of course the one that you do. After all, no self-defense method is any good if you don’t practice it. However, if you’re in a hurry, then World War II combatives are worth looking at. Look at Adrenal Stress courses, too. (Think Bill Kipp, Peyton Quinn, and people like that.) That said, what are you really expecting to fight? Often, we’re afraid of the dark rather than what’s in it. If so, buy a flashlight, and then get on with more important things.


Does the fear of nuclear or biological terrorism keep you awake at night? If so, then check out the International Atomic Energy Agency’s articles on nuclear terrorism at http://www.iaea.org/worldatom/Press/Focus/Nuclear_Terrorism and Bob Bogle’s "Timelines of Bioweaponry" at http://pw1.netcom.com/~aguldo/agga/bt/bw.htm.

At the other end of the threat spectrum, ever considered studying Underwater Jujitsu? Try http://www.pixi.com/~mcjitsu/mizujitsu/mizujitsu.html.

Announcements (July 2002)

If you’re looking for government-approved advice for workplace violence protection, take a look at http://www.doli.state.mn.us/wvprisk.html. I would guess that the statistics (and advice) does not include (or relate to) people employed in the sex trade. This is unfortunate, as sex trade workers are frequently victimized.


An excellent article about life in inner city Philadelphia appears at http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/race/streets.htm. Its relevance to self-defense is that crime rates are high in inner cities, and whether you live and work there, or simply visit them on occasion, an understanding of the reason might help you avoid problems.

Announcements (June 2002)

For some articles about the use of short sticks, flashlights, and similar devices in self-defense, try http://drearic.com/koppostick2.html, http://drearic.com/batonlite.html, and http://drearic.com/yawara.html. Follow the recommended links, too, as these articles by Don Rearic are good.


Prisons are industries as well as services, and for an article about what Atlantic Monthly calls "The Prison-Industrial Complex," see http://www.theatlantic.com/issues/98dec/prisons.htm.


If you use sleeper holds for control, see "On Chokes," by Wendy Gunther, MD, at http://www.judo.on.ca/articles/chokes.html.

Announcements (May 2002)

"Seven pirates armed with swords and knives hijacked a tug - GUAN SENG 2 and a barge - YUAN CHENG 19 at anchor. All six crew were tied up. Five were forced to board a speedboat and taken to a nearby island. They managed to untie themselves and boarded a passing fishing boat. Whereabouts and safety of the remaining one crewmember are unknown. The tug and barge are still missing." The dateline of this report (http://www.iccwbo.org/ccs/imb_piracy/weekly_piracy_report.asp) is not sometime in the eighteenth century, but March 8, 2002. According to the article at http://www.iccwbo.org/home/news_archives/2002/piracy_report.asp, there were 335 cases of shipboard piracy in 2001. "Pirates killed a total of 21 crewmembers and ships' passengers last year, and 210 more were taken hostage, the new report revealed. All but one of the murders were in Asian waters. Last year 71 sea attacks involved guns, up from 53 in the year 2000, while assaults using knives fell from 132 to 105. Indonesian waters and the Malacca Strait remain the world's most pirate-infested seas." Other hazardous spots include the Bay of Bengal, the Red Sea off Yemen and Somalia, and port calls in Brazil, Colombia, and Ecuador. For commercial anti-attack plans, see http://www.shipping.detr.gov.uk/mgn/mgn075/index.htm; for suggestions to yachtsmen, see http://www.imray.com/corrections/images/096P.html and http://www.bluewaterweb.com/newsletter4.htm. Bottom line? Maintain radar and visual watches, 24-hours a day, and be cautious about who you let approach.


Announcements (April 2002)

If you live near the National Archives and Record Administration (NARA) archival storage in College Park, Maryland, then the following are some films that might be worth arranging to see.

Control No: NWDNM(m)-111-TF-1634
Creating Org: U.S. Army. Office of the Chief Signal Officer

Control No: NWDNM(m)-111-FB-74
Creating Org: Signal Corps.

Control No: NWDNM(m)-65.54
Title: KILL OR BE KILLED, 1943.
Creating Org: Federal Bureau of Investigation

There are also boxes of archival materials that look interesting. For example:

Control No: NWCTM-331-UD1690-5702(6)
Title: 161: Investigation at Koryo University (Takushoku University) Regarding: Karate 1949, 1946-1950.
Creating Org: Supreme Commander for the Allied Powers (SCAP). Civil Information and Education Section. Education Division. Liaison and Investigation Branch. Box(es) 5702

For information about the National Archives, or to conduct additional online searches, visit the NARA Archival Information Locator (NAIL) web site http://www.nara.gov/nara/nail.html.


For a look at what constituted state-of-the-art police stick work during the 1940s, see Frank Matsuyama’s How to Use the Yawara Stick, reprinted at http://www.yawara.com/Yawast1.html. Some things don’t change, either, as Matsuyama wrote, on page 37, "Many Police Departments make it a practice to hire outside Instructors in Self-Defense, but usually in a short time the Officers forget the training they have received, and actually the Police Department has spent its money for nothing."


Wearing body armor adds at least 5 degrees to the wet bulb temperature. Therefore, to reduce risk of heat injuries, you need to ingest at least one pint (1/2 liter) of water per hour if walking or sitting inside a warm office, and twice that if you’re engaged in physical activity on a warm day. Coffee and soda are not recommended, by the way, as they're diuretic. For details, see http://safety.army.mil/pages/media/pubs/cm/cmapr99.pdf.


FM 21-150, Combatives, 1992, was recently superseded, but it has since been posted at http://www.geocities.com/the_creepy_thin_man/links.html. Fairbairn’s Get Tough! and Applegate’s Kill or Be Killed are also linked here.


Announcements (February 2002)

For a discussion of women in the military across cultures and over time, see http://www.warandgender.com/chap2pap.htm.

Announcements (January 2002)

For a description of how the PLO calmed some overzealous terrorists via arranged marriages, see Bruce Hoffman’s article at http://www.theatlantic.com/issues/2001/12/hoffman.htm.


Announcements (December 2001)

Most days for the past couple weeks, my EJMAS e-mail address has received a couple e-mail viruses. Presumably this is because a number of readers are surfing the Internet bareback. If this includes you, I’d strongly encourage you to buy a virus checker and a firewall. After all, physical security begins at home.


Announcements (November 2001)

James Sass has started a bulletin board devoted to Close Combat that may be of interest to readers. The URL is http://pub15.ezboard.com/bclosecombat82274. Meanwhile, W.R. Mann has launched the unrelated RealFighting, a quarterly e-zine dedicated to combative behavior. There are articles by Geoff Thompson, Peyton Quinn, and many others, and I recommend that you check it out. The URL is http://www.realfighting.com.


According to http://www.crime-prevention.org/english/publications/children/profil.html, the average criminal is a male aged less than 30 years. His past includes family violence and may include sexual and substance abuse. He has anxiety disorders, began displaying criminal behavior by age 8, and although of average intelligence, he has less than average education levels. The average murderer presents a somewhat different profile. Education is not a factor, nor is ethnicity or wealth. Instead, according to http://www.csc-scc.gc.ca/text/rsrch/briefs/b12/b12e.shtml, murderers tend to be males under 35 years of age who "hold attitudes, values and beliefs favorable to the use of lethal and/or non-lethal violence." Most murderers knew (and were often related to) their victims, and as a result, the police solve most homicide cases.

Serial killers follow a different pattern. According to http://www.serialkillers.net/profiling/who_is.html, most serial killers are reasonably educated white males aged 25-35. Their victims are normally strangers. They are usually careful about their work, and as a result they are hard to catch.

Workplace violence follows still another model. Workplace violence is most often committed by a white male aged 30-50 who has an unstable family life, a fascination with weapons, and low self-esteem. See http://www.svn.net/mikekell/v3.html. Since this description fits so many North American martial art teachers, it may explain all the complaints about abusive instructors.

As for hate crimes (blowing up the World Trade Center undoubtedly counts as a hate crime), well, here's the kicker: "Most hate crimes are carried out by otherwise law-abiding young people who see little wrong with their actions. Alcohol and drugs sometimes help fuel these crimes, but the main determinant appears to be personal prejudice, a situation that colors people’s judgment, blinding the aggressors to the immorality of what they are doing." http://www.apa.org/pubinfo/hate. Furthermore, in the words of Ehud Sprinzak, writing at http://www.foreignpolicy.com/issue_...1/sprinzak.html, "Although profiling suicide bombers may be a fascinating academic challenge, it is less relevant in the real-world struggle against them than understanding the modus operandi and mind-set of terrorist leaders who would never consider killing themselves, but opt for suicide terrorism as a result of cold reasoning." Still, one can try. See "The Terrorist's Mind: A Psychological Profile" at http://www.ulb.ac.be/bps/docs/activ.../BPS97-P36.html.

A discussion of how profiles are built (and viewed by courts) appears at http://www.corpus-delicti.com/Profiling_law.html.


If looking for historical precedents for modern Islamic terrorism, try http://www.alamut.com/subj/ideologies/alamut/secDoctrines.html and http://www.humnet.ucla.edu/humnet/cmrs/publications/comitatus/26/26babak.htm. If you’d prefer some more recent news, then also see http://planetarabia.com.


Most potential biological weapons have mundane origins and most potential chemical weapons have peaceful uses. For some idea of these potential uses and abuses, see http://www.state.gov/www/global/arms/factsheets/wmd/cw/auslist.html, http://www.alenafix.com/old-fbg/articles/huff-cw.html, http://cns.miis.edu/research/cbw/tech.htm, and http://whyfiles.org/141bioweapons2/biblio.html.

Researchers are proposing some interesting defenses, too. See, for example, http://www.infowar.com/wmd/99/wmd_041799a_j.shtml.


Announcements (October 2001)

For an insightful article about the nature of terrorism, see Conor Cruise O’Brien’s essay in The Atlantic Monthly at http://www.theatlantic.com/issues/86jun/obrien.htm. For an equally interesting discussion of how to fight terrorism (use a few very motivated troops instead of draftees; avoid making martyrs; and don’t become so ruthless that you become no different from the folks you were sent to stop), see Andrew Brown’s essay at http://www.salon.com/news/feature/2001/09/19/fighting_terror/index.html.

Of course, terrorism takes many forms, and not all of it is foreign-based. From http://www.suntimes.com/output/quicktakes/cst-nws-qt17.html:
"Marcher with American flag on why he was part of small mob threatening a mosque and taunting Arab Americans, many of whom were born here, just as he was: ‘I was born here more.’" One hopes this represents an aberration rather than a trend.


Announcements (September 2001)

Effective October 1, 2000, the US Marine Corps instituted the Marine Corps Martial Arts Training Program, or MCMATP. Instructor training has been underway for about a year, and complete program implementation has been directed by March 2002. The Director, Martial Arts Program, Training and Education Command, Quantico, is Lt. Col. George Bristol, a longtime member of the International Hoplological Society and a frequent contributor to its publications. Biographical details appear at http://www.mcu.usmc.mil/TbsNew/Pages/Martial%20Arts/Default.htm. Also associated with the program is Master Gunnery Sergeant Cardo Urso, whose video, "Secrets of Vital Point Striking," is sold by Paladin Press. Urso’s martial arts curriculum vita appears at http://www.lmsleadership.com/Martart.html.

Doctrinal guidance includes Marine Corps Reference Publication (MCRP) 3-02B, 1999, "Close Combat," http://www.doctrine.quantico.usmc.mil/mcrp/htm/mcrp302B.htm. Password access is required, but a keyword search for MCRP 3-02B partially circumvents that minor obstacle. For example, a chapter on come-along techniques appears at http://www.handtohand22.freehomepage.com and a description of the bayonet program appears on the International Hoplological Society website, http://www.hoplology.com. See also Marine Corps Order 1510.122, "Individual Training Standards (ITS) System for the Marine Corps Martial Arts Training Program (MCMATP)," October 4, 2000, http://www.tecom.usmc.mil/stds/documents/ITS/matp-its.pdf. Related topics include sexual harassment and the values program.

Some Marine Corps Times articles describing the program appear at http://www.mcu.usmc.mil/TbsNew/Pages/Martial%20Arts/Default.htm. Additional articles and opinions concerning this program include:

Bennett, Michael C. "Are You Ready to Rumble?" Henderson Hall News, February 16, 2001, http://www.dcmilitary.com/marines/hendersonhall/6_07/local_news/5080-1.html

Bristol, George. "Integrated Fighting System – The Marine Corps Martial Arts Program," Marine Corps Gazette, 85:7 (July 2001), 38-39

Figueroa, Joe A. "Guru’s Teaching Inspired Commandant’s Martial Arts Program," Semper Fi News, http://www.semperfinews.com/marinelink/2001329185251.htm

Gilmore, Gerry J. "Marines Graduate First in Martial Arts Instruction," militarylifestyle.com, http://www.militarylifestyle.com/home/1,1210,S:9126:1:972,00.html

Glasgow, John P. Jr. "Tip of the Spear," Marine Corps Gazette, 85:7 (July 2001), 2, http://www.mca-marines.org/gazette/Jul01edt.html

Grdovich, Allan J. "New Fighting Technique Learned by Marines," Marine Corps News, October 2, 2000, http://www.usmc.mil/marinelink/mcn2000.nsf/main5/6D82167A195068448525696F005FF1BF?opendocument

Jaffe, Greg. "A Few Good Men Try the Marine Martial Art, and Take on Two Gurus," Wall Street Journal, October 9, 2000, reprinted at http://www.aikicommunications.net/heckler.html and http://www.ranchostrozzi.com/wsjarticle1.html

Powers, Rod. "Surviving Marine Corps Boot Camp," http://usmilitary.about.com/library/weekly/aa060400d.htm

Stone, Andrea. "Martial Arts to Create New Breed of Marines," USA Today, March 8, 2001, 1A, 2A, http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2001-03-08-marines.htm

VanOuse, Mike. "A Few Good Men," Layman’s Terms, August 4, 2001, http://www.citizyn.com/archive/mike/12-12.htm.

Veith, Gene Edward. "Looking for a Few Good Ninjas: Will the New Age Movement Overtake the Marine Corps?" World Magazine, October 28, 2000, http://www.freerepublic.com/forum/a39facb0b6bc4.htm

See also Richard Strozzi Heckler, In Search of the Warrior Spirit (Berkeley, CA: North Atlantic Press, 2nd edition, 1992). Antecedents of Heckler’s program, which was considered by the Marine Corps (see the Wall Street Journal article posted above) include James B. Channon, The First Earth Battalion: Ideas and Ideals for Soldiers Everywhere (Fort Monroe, VA: United States Army Training and Doctrine Command, 1979), which is reprinted at http://ejmas.com/jnc/jncart_channon_0200.htm.

Announcements (August 2001)

As noted in several of our articles, Sherlock Holmes was a student of Baritsu. To read Conan Doyle’s stories of the Great Detective online, try the Sherlock Holmes Museum website, http://www.sherlock-holmes.co.uk/home.htm.


On a more serious note, for discussions of US military Rules of Engagement, see http://www.rulesofengagement.com. Ignore the links to the movie and instead head straight to the case studies that include Beirut, Haiti, and Desert Storm.

Announcements (July 2001)

Computer security should be part of your overall physical security plan. To make your password more difficult to crack, consider the suggestions made at http://www.sysopt.com/articles/win2kpass/index2.html.


For a transcript of a US military hand-to-hand combat film made in 1942, see http://www.handtohand22.freehomepage.com/Page2.htm.


If you enjoyed our reprints of Vigny and Barton-Wright, then see Ralph Grasso’s article, "Quick Flick of the Wrist," at http://www.savateaustralia.com/quick.htm. Although not related to Vigny, also read Grasso’s tips on using an umbrella for self-defense at http://www.savateaustralia.com/theumbrella2.html.

Announcements (June 2001)

The research area of this link, http://www.secretsofwar.com/html/index2.html, includes transcripts of all the interviews done for the TV documentary,Secrets of War.


For a discussion of use-of-force tactics in a law enforcement environment, see http://www.aele.org/alert.html.

Announcements (May 2001)

Interested in US Army and Army National Guard company-level issues, to include physical training? If so, try www.companycommand.com. Meanwhile, for some background on the development of athletics in the Army, see http://trol.redstone.army.mil/mwr/sports_history/history.html.


If you were looking for a copy of Murphy’s law of combat, try http://www.accessorl.net/~cyberwar/murphy.htm.


An interesting site is "War Times Journal" at http://www.wtj.com. See, for example, Manfred Freiherr von Richtofen’s memoirs, in which he wrote: "[In aerial combat,] the decisive factor does not lie in trick flying but solely in the personal ability and energy of the aviator. A flying man may be able to loop and do all the stunts imaginable and yet he may not succeed in shooting down a single enemy. In my opinion the aggressive spirit is everything." (http://www.richthofen.com/arcdocs/richt9.htm)

Announcements (April 2001)

During World War II, German POWs often amused themselves by wrestling. For some mention of this, see http://www.fortunecity.com/campus/dixie/921/PoWs/pows.htm.


Interested in reading the US Army’s doctrine on dealing with civil disturbances? Then see FM 19-15. The section on the use of riot batons is at http://www.adtdl.army.mil/cgi-bin/atdl.dll/fm/19-15/CH10.htm#s2. Also see http://www.geocities.com/Pentagon/6453/index.html, which provides links to sites related to Military Operations in Urban Terrain, or MOUT.


Recently a question was asked about the Gurkha knives known as khukuri. For links plus photos of art-quality pieces, see http://www.vikingsword.com/ethsword/khukuri. If interested in learning to use the knives as weapons, either use them to chop brush for a few months or check with the folks listed here: http://stickgrappler.tripod.com/bando/kachin.html. Note, however, that in Nepal khukuris are as much cultural artifact as tool. See, for example, http://www2.cs.uwindsor.ca/60-205/00F/sec3/shrest1/craft.html. And, in this role, they are included in dances attendant to Hindu festivals such as Durga Puja.


Announcements (March 2001)

"Why do people try to control others or destroy stability?" asks Michael D. Kozbial of Calgary. (http://www.spots.ab.ca/~kozbial/mdk/biomdk.html) Because they have empty lives, he says, answering his own question. "If people like these would spend more time in church on Sunday mornings, and at Stampede Wrestling and Western Canadian Extreme Wrestling on Friday nights, he firmly believes, society as a whole would be a lot better off." For Friday night, InYo offers professional wrestling, while for Sunday morning, Journal of Non-Lethal Combatives is proud to present "Ministering to Marines" by Chaplain (Captain) Eli Takesian, U.S. Navy (Retired) (http://ejmas.com/jnc/jncart_Takesian_0301).

"In preparation for Operation United Shield, the US-led evacuation of UN forces from Somalia, Lieutenant General A. C. Zinni, USMC, asked his staff to pursue ‘less lethal’ alternatives in dealing with unarmed hostile elements in Mogadishu," Colonel F.M. Lorenz wrote in Parameters (Autumn 1996), page 52. "The intent was to use every practical and available means to deal with hostile crowds, with the goal of saving lives and reducing confrontation." The remainder of the article goes on to discuss sticky-foam and similar weapons; it was the author’s conclusion that, "When properly employed, non-lethal weapons will save lives and avoid confrontations, and they will not lead us down the slippery slope to war." http://carlisle-www.army.mil/usawc/Parameters/96autumn/lorenz.htm

Meanwhile, Qiao Liang and Wang Xiangsui are colonels in China’s People’s Liberation Army. To them, non-lethal warfare doesn’t mean sticky foam, but blinding lasers. An English-language translation of their 227-page book, Unrestricted Warfare: Thoughts on War and Strategy in a Global Era (Beijing, 1999), may be downloaded from http://cryptome.org/cuw.htm.

Whatever they are and however they are used, non-lethal weapons are subject to rules of engagement (ROE). "Overly restrictive and unsuitable rules of engagement handicap and endanger U.S. forces, especially ground troops on peace-support missions. Individual Marines, sailors, and soldiers need to know when they may resort to deadly force to protect their lives," says Colonel Hays W. Parks, in "Deadly Force Is Authorized," Proceedings, 126:1 (February 2001), 33-37, or online at http://www.usni.org/Proceedings/Articles01/PROparks1.html. The examples Parks gives include a soldier nearly court-martialed for shooting a man beating him on the back with a club, and another given a medal because he ordered his men not to shoot during a similar situation.


Announcements (February 2001)

It’s hard to talk about policing – whether of our selves or our societies -- without talking about Big Brother. Yet, in the words of the man who named Big Brother, "If liberty means anything at all it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear." For an insightful essay into Eric Blair, who wrote as George Orwell, see http://www.law.utexas.edu/lpop/etext/lsf/bonsignore8.htm. Still, except in fiction, good and evil are rarely black and white. For a discussion of the shades of gray in everyday life, see Harold Schulweis’ "The Fear and Suspicion of Goodness," at http://www.holocaustcommission.org/educator_resources/fear.html.


In the sad but true category, here are some articles about a man who pioneered a perfectly fine martial art and then went and embarrassed himself by claiming to be things he’s not: http://www.cyberseals.org/reportsb.htm, http://www.pownetwork.org/phonies/phonies.htm. But it can be worse. See, for example, the discussion of Frank Dux at http://msnhomepages.talkcity.com/RightWay/yamato_damashii/dux.html.


For the history of warfare, the New York Military History Symposium offers a number of articles of potential interest. See http://homepages.go.com/homepages/n/y/m/nymas1. For thoughts on its future, see the transcript of an Australian Broadcasting Corporation’s show on the so-called Revolution in Military Affairs (RMA) at http://www.abc.net.au/rn/talks/bbing/stories/s226375.htm.


For the US Army’s official "Lessons Learned" regarding light infantry combat, see http://call.army.mil/pdf/newsltrs/2-88/2-88bk.pdf. "Bayonet and hand-to-hand combat training build a spirit of aggressiveness, develop confidence, and instill the will to win," the authors note. (Page 7.) Continue down a bit, however, and you quickly learn that mechanized infantry are encouraged to use their anti-tank weapons instead.

Another article of potential interest is "Close Quarters Combat and Modern Warfare" by Ray O. Wood and Matthew T. Michaelson at http://www-cgsc.army.mil/MILREV/English/MayJun00/insights.htm. (Use your search feature; it’s down a ways.) The article originally appeared in Military Review, May-June 2000.


Fairbairn and Sykes remain a popular research topic. So some bibliographic guidance:

Online, the following sites offer background on various aspects of the Shanghai Municipal Police. Finally, in the "for what it’s worth" category, note that Fairbairn was graded 2-dan in judo through the Kodokan in Tokyo. His dates of rank were December 14, 1926 to 1-dan and February 18, 1931 to 2-dan.

Announcements (January 2001)

The terms and conditions to which you agree by linking to http://www.dalitstan.org/mughalstan/jung/jung.html are classic. Some of the links are interesting, too. For an alternative political viewpoint, try also www.cops.aust.com, National Criminal Justice Reference Service, The National Consortium for Justice Information and Statistics, National Incident-Based Reporting System, FBI Uniform Crime Reports, and Bureau of Justice Statistics.


A US Marine site that includes texts that you can download is http://www.doctrine.quantico.usmc.mil/history1.htm. Meanwhile, for descriptions of recent US Marine Corps hand-to-hand programs written by project managers George Bristol and Hunter Armstrong, see Hop-lite, 9 (Fall 2000). Ordering information is available on http://www.hoplology.com. Aikidoka Richard Strozzi Heckler was simultaneously teaching other Marines. For a description of his quite different viewpoint and methodology, see his book, In Search of the Warrior Spirit (Berkeley, CA: North Atlantic Press, 2nd edition, 1992).


For links to articles about fighting with canes, see http://xcanegcis2.homestead.com/XCaneGCIS2.html.


A WWII combatives page with potential is at http://www.geocities.com/thebristolbloke/index.html.

Announcements (December 2000)

The first link is Isaac Bonewits' essay on warriors and soldiers; the second and third are point/counterpoint. After reading them, also see Ralph Peters' very different thoughts on the subject. (To find the links, use your search feature, as the URLs appear in earlier Journal of Non-lethal Combatives announcements.)





For the US Marine Corps combatives program dated October 2000, see http://www.tecom.usmc.mil/stds/documents/ITS/matp-its.pdf. It's in PDF format so you need Acrobat, and runs 97 pages. The interesting parts start around page 23 ("tan belt"). The actual training manual is restricted access, so is not currently downloadable via the Internet.

At the other end of the military spectrum, there are some interesting reviews of recent articles on the so-called Revolution in Military Affairs (RMA) at http://www.lancaster-index.com/intro/db/RMA2.HTM.


If interested in military intelligence, to include counter-terrorism, try http://www.tscm.com/intelsites.html and http://liun.hektik.org/cw/cl/icilinks.htm. If also interested in criminal justice, then see http://www.lib.msu.edu/harris23/crimjust/corp_sec.htm as well.


For an outline of US criminal law, see http://law.upenn.edu/~jpyle/notes/crimout.


Bowie-style knives have many fans, and Pete Kautz provides some useful links at http://www.alliancemartialarts.com/links.html, as does James Keating at http://www.homestead.com/maajakknives/maajak1.html.


Another site for Richard Francis Burton fans: http://asa.bc.ca/home/rowena/srfb.html.


During and immediately following World War II, director John Huston made three documentaries for the US Army, and the third, Let There Be Light, dealt with how the Army treated its psychological casualties. (Freudian psychotherapy combined with sodium pentothal, hypnotism, and baseball, actually.) Although in the film everyone left the hospital happy, the film was still banned until 1981. Various reasons have been given why, but Richard Ledes, at http://www.apres-coup.org/archives/articles/ledes.pdf, provides the most plausible explanation that I've seen -- basically, the film's portrayals of successful institutional cures did not support postwar models of neurosis treated by community rather than institutional psychiatry, and were therefore suppressed.

Huston's second wartime documentary, the gritty Battle of San Pietro, is available online at http://www.liketelevision.com/web1/movies/sanpietro. You will need Real Player to view it, but the download is free. For a description of the filming, see http://www.utexas.edu/admin/opa/discovery/disc1997v14n2/disc-sanpietro.html; for a review of the final cut, also see http://www.informatics.tuad.ac.jp/net-expo/ff/ff95/daily95/en/daily1-4.html.

Announcements (November 2000)

A Journal of Non-Lethal Combatives article ("Legal Self-Defense," November 1999) was cited by historian Richard Slotkin in his recent (favorable) review of Michael A. Bellesiles, Arming America: The Origins of a National Gun Culture (New York: Knopf, 2000). See Atlantic Monthly, November 2000, pages 114-118 or http://www.theatlantic.com/cgi-bin/o/issues/2000/11/slotkin.htm.


As I track how people came to EJMAS, I find that our reprints of how-to manuals are very popular. Which is nice, as scanning and typing takes more time than most people probably think. However, a warning -- how-to is not the same as knowing why. If you know why you fight, then typically the answer of how-to becomes fairly obvious. On the other hand, if you do not know why, then you can be as technically proficient as, well, as anyone in the world, yet still be clueless about when or when not to use those skills. The bottom line? The key to self-defense is not owning a gun or knowing how to punch someone in the nose, but knowing in advance what you are willing to kill for, die for, and live with afterwards.


If interested in the history of dueling, follow the links at http://www.isidore-of-seville.com/dueling/3.html.

Announcements (October 2000)

Serial killers tend to be males aged 20-30. Their killings fulfill sexual fantasies, and in general the killers are members of the majority rather than minority population. Therefore in the Americas and Europe they tend to be white. If interested in details, note that there are many lurid websites -- try the keywords "serial killer."

At a less lurid level, Puerto Rico averages 2-3 homicides per day. This is a rate of 12 per hundred thousand, and is about double the rate of New York, Texas, or Illinois. For details, see http://www.onepaper.com/prdn/ (editorial, November 21, 2000). Puerto Rican homicide rates are therefore approaching nineteenth century levels of violence. For example, in Southern Greece during the 1860s, the homicide rate was 12.4 per hundred thousand, and there are similar estimates for nineteenth century Chicago and San Francisco. On the other hand, the Wild West cow town of Dodge City, Kansas was a quiet place, reporting just six homicides between 1878 and 1887 -- and those six killings occurred in a span of a few months in 1878, and were related.

Still, none of these are truly violent cultures. For that, you need to visit New Guinea, where some traditional warrior societies have homicide rates that average 2 per thousand.

At the other end of the spectrum, Osaka is about as violent as Hamburg, and on a per capita basis, Tokyo is about twice as violent as is Bismarck, North Dakota or Dublin, Ireland. The Bismarck and Dublin police have a higher clearance rate, too.


British law relating to self-defense is discussed at http://www.bsdgb.co.uk. The London Metropolitan Police add their tuppence at http://www.met.police.uk/police/mps/mps/youth/you-004.htm.


Obviously, blows with the hands and feet to the neck and throat can be lethal. For details, see http://www.llcc.cc.il.us/justice/forensic/asphyxiation.htm. But most folks prefer other methods.


From http://www.nineoclock.ro/TR3/1951pol.html: "According to an agreement signed last February [2000] between the Romanian Gendarmerie and the Armed Police Troops of the People's Republic of China, three Chinese officers and experts in Kung-fu (wushu) have been in Romania training over 150 Romanian gendarmes for the past two months in techniques of self-defense at three centres established in Brasov, Oradea and Bucharest. The training course organized in Bucharest concludes today with a demonstration led by the Chinese experts, at the training base of the Commandment of the National Gendarmerie."


For information about military law around the world, try http://uppmlj.freeyellow.com/june2k.html. For an essay in which a serving military officer says it is the duty of the officer to convince the enlisted soldiers to kill during war, see http://www.usafa.af.mil/jscope/JSCOPE00/Kilner00.html.


Some historical background to US Army commissioned officer training and development appears at http://www.infowar.com/iwftp/cspinney/c206.txt. Equivalent noncommissioned officer training programs are described at http://www.geocities.com/Pentagon/Bunker/2982/Articles/ncoed.html.


Want to be a cyber warrior? Try http://www.infowar.com/mil_c4i/mil_c4i.shtml. On the other hand, if you prefer fighting with cast metal miniatures, try http://www.dnai.com/~soongliu/SavageAndSoldier/articles.html.


For a cynical view of Britain's Special Air Service (an organization whose purpose is said to be to "defend and uphold the power, privilege and interests of the ruling class"), see http://www.afmltd.demon.co.uk/meltzer/articles/sas.html. For more favorable views, see instead http://home.att.net/~governmentdrone/wwii-specialops.html. Some reasonably dispassionate views appear at http://www.terrorism.com/terrorism/SAS.shtml.


Current US Army doctrine on non-lethal technologies appears at http://call.army.mil/call/newsltrs/00-7/00-7toc.htm. Air Force thoughts meanwhile appear at http://www.airpower.maxwell.af.mil/airchronicles/apj/mcgowan.html. As for the Marines, well, here are the "Views of a Marine Gunner," (CWO2 Jeffrey L. Eby), as they appeared in Marine Corps Gazette, September 2000, page 63:

The bayonet fosters a spirit of aggressiveness and confidence in the individual, and this alone justifies its existence even if all of its other characteristics are invalid. I'll buy that. But for instilling the spirit of aggressiveness, do we really need a knife that costs more (and weighs nearly as much as) the issue pistol? And even if we do, then shouldn't the training emphasize realism rather than fantasy? If so, then why are US soldiers taught to ram the bayonet into a target, and to attack and defend alone? After all, as far back as 1853, Lieutenant Richard Francis Burton wrote in A Complete System of Bayonet Exercise that the bayonet was not to be used by one man working alone, or in a blind charge, but instead by four men working together. (He called their formation a rallying square.) Furthermore, said Burton, "The instructor must spare no pains in preventing the soldier from using force, especially with the left or guiding arm, as too great muscular exertion generally causes the thrust to miss." After all, a "trifling body-stab with the bayonet is sufficient to disable a man; and many a promising young soldier has lost his life by burying his weapon so deep in the enemy’s breast that it could not be withdrawn quickly enough to be used against a second assailant." Therefore, contrary to what the modern bayonet manuals teach, the proper use of the bayonet is, in Burton's words, "more like a dart than a thrust."


Last month we mentioned a website that described Jerry Peterson's SCARS program. For a less breathless second opinion, try http://www.altinet.net/~karate/scars2.htm.


For an online museum's exhibit called "The Geometry of War, 1500-1750," see http://www.mhs.ox.ac.uk/geometry/content.htm. Topics include "Troop formations and the telescope" and "Gunnery".

Announcements (September 2000)

The attached link takes you to an article that discusses current US Army plans to make sure that military ball ammunition contains less lead, thereby making it less of a health risk to people: http://www.mpif.org/meetings/tungsten_abstracts.html. I am not making this up. For additional US military activities, see http://www.marinetimes.com/index.html. Included are links to online images, and all US service newspapers can be accessed through there, not just Marine Times. And if your interests are more historical than current, also visit the US Army's Center for Military History at http://www.army.mil/cmh-pg/default.htm.


For links to US laws relating to the carrying of concealed firearms, check http://www.webcom.com/gun_guy/page8.htm. For comparable Canadian laws, try http://teapot.usask.ca/cdn-firearms/homepage.html.


Awhile back we reprinted Richard Burton's Sentiment of the Sword. For more information about Burton, see http://www.isidore-of-seville.com/burton/2.html.


For a glowing look at Jerry Peterson's SCARS system (http://www.scars.com), see Herb Borkland's article at http://fightingarts.com/magazine/borklandscars.shtml. Unfortunately, the people who most require SCARS training are not middle-aged men who have $5,000 a week to pay for training, but gay, lesbian, and transgender youth in high school -- one 1999 study reported 69% of these youth had been targets of verbal, physical, or sexual harassment.


If interested in US military combatives as taught by Fairbairn, Sykes, Applegate, and Styers, see http://www.bladeforums.com/ubb/Forum35/HTML/000301.html.


For an introduction to the subject of combative training in the US Navy during World War II, see Bruce Bennett, "Physical Education and Sport at Its Best – The Naval Aviation V-5 Pre-Flight Program," Canadian Journal of History of Sport, 21:2 (December 1990) and Donald W. Romminger, Jr., "From Playing Field to Battleground: The United States Navy V-5 Preflight Program in World War II," Journal of Sport History, 12:5 (Winter 1985).


For links to the role that culture plays in American violence, see, for example, the Institute for Violence, Culture, and Survival site at http://www.virginia.edu/vfh/vcs. Likewise, for China, Turkey, or Israel, see, for example, http://www.let.leidenuniv.nl/bth/index.html, http://www.discoverturkey.freeserve.co.uk/Violence.htm, and http://www.sptimes.com/News/60699/Perspective/Israel_s_schools_mirr.shtml. (HINT: Add whatever topic or country you are interested to the keyword search "culture violence" on Google or other good browser, and then follow the links.) From what I read in these and related articles, it appears that regardless of who is doing the study, researchers tend to perceive violence done by people "like us" sympathetically and violence done by other people unsympathetically.

Announcements (August 2000)

For another US Army site describing the use of Gracie jujitsu in modern training cycles, see http://www.armytimes.com/stories/army14.htm. The SFC Matt Larsen mentioned in the article appears in the recent Pacific Street Films documentary, Martial Arts: The Real Story.


If you're interested in Old European martial arts and combatives, there is to be a hands-on conference in Toronto in October 2000. For details, see http://www.aemma.org/misc/news/wma2000/toronto.html.


For an aikido-based defensive tactics program based in Washington State, visit George Ledyard's Aikido Eastside site http://www.aikieast.com; the recommended reading list is quite good. Meanwhile, for a more rambunctious look at defensive tactics, visit Marc "The Animal" MacYoung's site at http://www.diac.com/~dgordon/MA.html. Some sample text:

While the stupidest 'last words' ever said -- when looking down the barrel of a gun are: "You ain't got the guts" -- the macho groin-scratching statement of "I'd rather be judged by 12 than carried by six" comes in a very close second. That attitude is guaranteed to have another six in your future. Unfortunately, those are the six who will be raping you in the prison shower.

Building on the previous statement that having a black belt doesn't instill a law degree, it is literally your ass if you don't look into the legal issues surrounding self-defense training. Every day, people accept what their sensei told them as gospel truth regarding not only what works as self-defense, but that the cops and the courts will immediately dismiss as such! BULL! I have seen everything from breaking a man's neck from behind, to multiple stab wounds, to kicking a man while he is down and countless other "guaranteed prison-time" moves taught as self-defense. On the slim chance that you can use such a move in a real fight, they will get you in deep legal trouble if you do.

Despite (or perhaps because of) such bluntness, MacYoung's list of online bulletin board etiquette at http://www.diac.com/~dgordon/animal_list.html is the best I've ever read. Check it out.


Thinking of traveling into harm's way? Then start with a visit to Fieldings' Danger Finder, the Travel Guide for the Mentally Unstable at http://www.fieldingtravel.com/df/index.htm.

Where, pray tell, is harm's way? For street crime, Florida is clearly deep in the Third World, but North Africa, Kenya, Turkey, and California are pretty bad, too. And no matter where you go, leading causes of death include riding in minivans or on motorcycles.

As for hand-to-hand fighting in combat zones (an estimated four million people, mostly civilians, killed during armed conflict since 1990), note that rocket-propelled grenades are the 21st century streetfighter's weapon of choice. Kung-fu that, Rambo.


A few years ago some people sued Paladin Press because they found Paladin's book Hit Man prejudicial to good order and discipline. Paladin's lawyers argued that what law-abiding citizens read in the privacy of their own homes was a right guaranteed by the First Amendment. However, the US Supreme Court refused to hear Paladin's case, and as a result various titles have been discontinued. For details, see the legal statement and company history at http://www.paladin-press.com. While there also go to "Interesting Links" and read the related article from the Christian Science Monitor.

Why mention that here? Well, disregarding the ripples of horror that decision sent down the spines of horror filmmakers, when Paladin owned the copyright to those books, readers had to pay money for the information (and sometimes misinformation) that Paladin books contained. This in turn meant that book sales were potentially traceable by law enforcement agencies looking for information about specific individuals charged with specific crimes. But now that Paladin has dropped copyright, the books have entered the public domain and as a result the texts are now freely available via the Internet. See, for example, http://www.overthrow.com/hitmanonline.html.

Isn't it grand how the law protects us?

Announcements (July 2000)

The June 2000 issue of Marine Corps Gazette contains three separate articles discussing the use of non-lethal weapons during Low Intensity Conflict/Operations Other Than War, plus two additional articles discussing related issues such as ethics and preventing atrocities. Personally, I especially liked the article on ethics, where Major Gary Lehmann noted that in many cases "senior officers knew about these leadership failures and chose not to deal with them, or they failed to properly supervise their subordinates and remained ignorant of reality."

Single issues of Gazette cost $3.00 and annual subscriptions cost $23 (civilians and officers) or $17 (enlisted). Copies of back issues are also available, and I strongly encourage you to request a copy of the non-lethal weapons insert that was included in the June 1999 issue. For further information, visit http://www.mca-marines.org/Gazette/gaz.html

While on that site, also check out the Tactical Decision Games, which change monthly. While most games describe company and platoon activities during wartime, increasing numbers relate to squad and platoon activities during Low Intensity Conflict/Operations Other Than War.

Finally, don't overlook the Commandant's Reading List.


The Applied Research Laboratory at Penn State has an Institute for Non-lethal Defense Technologies. The URL is http://www.arl.psu.edu/. Unfortunately, there isn't much posted save mission statements.


In March 1993, several Canadian paratroopers serving on peacekeeping duty in Somalia beat to death a sixteen-year old Somali they had caught stealing. The resulting scandal led to the disbanding of the Airborne Regiment and the establishment of the Lester B. Pearson Canadian International Peacekeeping Training Centre in Halifax. Courses last between one to four weeks, and academic credit is available. The website is http://www.cdnpeacekeeping.ns.ca.

UPDATE Jan 2003: Thank you for including a link to the Pearson Peacekeeping Centre on your website. We thought you would like to know that we have created a new website at the following address: http://www.peaceoperations.org. We hope you will update our link accordingly. The website's new user-friendly format and content reflects the positive changes that have occurred at the PPC during the past year. For example, the Centre's programmes are increasingly oriented to organizations involved in civilian deployment. We have also added two new programme areas: Capacity Building and Support to Missions in the Field.
We welcome your comments on these ideas, our new website and any other ways that the PPC can be of assistance to you. Please feel free to contact us at advancement@peaceoperations.org. Also, please watch for the French version of the website, which will be available early in the New Year.
On behalf of the staff of the PPC,

Sandra Dunsmore
Pearson Peacekeeping Centre


If you train using wooden sticks, you should enjoy visiting Kim Taylor's site http://www.uoguelph.ca/~iaido and Ken Pfrenger's site http://www.geocities.com/Athens/Acropolis/4933/shillelagh.html. On the other hand, if you train using rattan sticks, then the following are some additional resources to investigate.

Ready Made Rattan Sticks





Raw Rattan




Announcements (June 2000)

Here's a nice British site about less-lethal police technologies -- http://www.keme.net/~mack.


If designing or considering a self-defense class, first visit the Center for Disease Control's excellent "Safe at Home" site, http://www.cdc.gov/safeusa/home/safehome.htm, as the information contained there may surprise you. For example, according to the "Intimate Partner Violence Fact Sheet" at http://www.cdc.gov/ncipc/factsheets/ipvfacts.htm, 40% of all visits to US emergency rooms are by women who have been physically victimized by intimate partners, and 92% of victims of sexual assault know their attackers. The group at greatest risk of intimate partner violence is women aged 19-29 whose family income is below US $10,000.


For an article about the problems faced by the families of homicide survivors, see Eric Schlosser, "A Grief like No Other," http://www.theatlantic.com/issues/97sep/grief.htm; for survivor problems, start with the National Center for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder site at http://www.ncptsd.org/Overview.html.


EJMAS was recently asked what kind of swords should be used to outfit the Thai court in the play "The King and I." The answer appears to be European military swords. From http://www.vikingsword.com/ethforum//messages/381.html (The basic site, http://www.vikingsword.com/cgi-bin/Ultimate.cgi, is great; check it out):

There are several swords in the Royal collection, many of which were patterned on katana (some I think are even Japanese-made, at least the blades). But the Regalia sword is a straight, double-edged leaf blade. I think it's only taken out on the most important ceremonial occasions; since the time of King Rama V (1868) the Kings generally are seen with European style officers' sabers when doing public things like reviewing the troops, etc. But, if you would rather see something exotic, then a scanned image of a Thai chopper appears at http://www.antiqueswords.com/mw39.htm. Of course, I seriously doubt that Imperial troops in garrison would have carried these.


Speaking of Japanese swords, a new site worth checking is Colin Hyakutake's site at http://www.bunbun.ne.jp/~sword. He says his goal is to update monthly, so he'd probably appreciate suggestions.

Announcements (May 2000)

If you find informative sites, drop me a line at jrsvinth@juno.com. Of course, if your recommendation is spam or an advertisement, it may not get posted until after your check clears the bank. Our ad rates are listed in the navigation bar at http://ejmas.com/ejmasframe.htm. Note that prices are listed in Canadian dollars. If you need a currency converter, then visit http://www.oanda.com/converter/classic.

On an equally crass note, if you decide to order a book you discovered using an EJMAS site from a major bookseller, please consider ordering through Barnes and Noble at http://ejmas.com/bandnbookstore.html or Chapters Canada at http://ejmas.com/chaptersbookstore.html. The reason is that EJMAS is an affiliate bookstore, so if you order through them, we get some money.

Speaking of books, readers interested in obtaining copies of Burton’s Sentiment of the Sword, his 1853 bayonet manual, or other historical sword texts should check out http://www.latourdulac.com/fencing/patri.html. The listed prices are very reasonable -- indeed, some are cheaper than making your own copies at Office Depot or Kinko's -- so probably you want to e-mail the fellow before ordering, as maybe prices have gone up since he posted them.


Starting this month we'll be posting Tactical Decision Games (TDG); related sites are listed on the TDG home page. Please let us know what you think. Meanwhile, if you're simply looking for a defensive tactics lesson plan, try this one, at George Arrington's Danzan Ryu site: http://www.danzanryu.com/police.html. For handouts, also see the University of Oklahoma site at http://www.ou.edu/oupd/selfdef.htm.


If you carry a pocketknife or practice with a sword, nunchaku, throwing stars, or batons, I suggest that you check your local weapon laws. In the US, see http://knifeart.com/knifeart/kniflawbysta.html. While onsite, also follow the links to your local statutes. Why? Well, to take one example, California, nunchaku are legal only inside licensed martial art schools while sticks and batons are legal only if you have passed state certified training and possess a license. Federal and city ordinances are separate matters altogether, but I don't have easy links there.


There are lots of sites out there offering to write your term paper for $10-$20 a page. But if you are into doing your own research using current military publications, then visit http://www.comw.org/pda/milbkmrk.html.

While researching, don't overlook the official sites, either. For example, visit the US Army's official technology site, http://www.army-technology.com/projects/index.html. By reading between the lines, one learns, for example, that the US Army has finally admitted that wheeled armored vehicles are better than tracked vehicles for Military Operations Other Than War. Unsurprisingly, the Army opted for a different family of vehicles than the Marine Corps chose; to do otherwise would be un-American.

Another US Army official site of potential interest is this one, outlining the history of the Military Intelligence branch: http://www.fas.org/irp/doddir/army/miotc/mihist.htm.


A University of Kansas site that should interest to people researching military training during World War I: http://raven.cc.ukans.edu/~kansite/ww_one/docs/statistics/statstc.htm. One reason for training with bayonets during that war was that the US Army still didn't have enough pistols and machine guns to meet its needs. John Moses Browning solved that problem all the way around: the M1911A1 .45 caliber pistol, the Browning automatic rifle, the Browning .30 caliber machine gun, and the still-in-service M2 Browning .50 caliber machine gun. A lot of people like bayonets, but me, I still think Ma Deuce is the finest close-combat weapon ever made. (Vulcan is wonderful, too, mind you, but it isn't as good for firing single shots at sniping ranges; meanwhile flamethrowers have the drawback of requiring their carriers to engage the bayonet fighters while carrying cans of napalm on their backs. Ma, though, you give her and her crew a tripod and a water jacket, a couple 5-gallon cans filled with antifreeze, and a couple hundred thousand rounds of ammunition, and after that you're off to the races.)  Another interesting document, this time Emmett J. Scott's book about African American soldiers in the World War: http://raven.cc.ukans.edu/~libsite/wwi-www/Scott/ScottTC.htm.

So, you say, how does this apply to non-lethal combat? Well, to quote from Scott:

There is a story of a Negro soldier who was found sitting pensively in a field while shells were roaring overhead like invisible midair express trains.

"What are you thinking about, Buddy? Making your will? Are you wondering why you were nut enough to enlist?"

"No," said the doughboy gloomily, "I was wondering how I was ever nut enough to let a man hold me up in Chicago last spring. He only had a thirty-two."

As for the use of the rifle-bayonet combination in combat, this is an officer's description of how two African American war heroes, Privates Henry Johnson and Needham Roberts, 369th US Infantry, used theirs: "The boys inflicted great loss on the enemy [by shooting; this was an exaggeration, as only one German was actually killed by rifle fire], but Roberts was overpowered and about to be carried away when your husband, who had used up all of the cartridges in the magazine of his rifle and had knocked one German down with the butt end of it, drew his bolo from his belt. A bolo is a short heavy weapon carried by the American soldier, with the edge of a razor, the weight of a cleaver and the point of a butcher knife. He rushed to the rescue of his former comrade, and fighting desperately, opened with his bolo the head of the German who was throttling Roberts, and turned to the boche who had Roberts by the feet, plunging the bolo into the German's bowels." Oh my, regular textbook bayonet-work there: club the attackers until the rifle breaks, then draw the bolo and charge. So, if the bayonet wasn't used for killing Germans, how was it used? An incident showing unusual fidelity to duty came to light yesterday. Sergeant Gans, with two other colored comrades, was on guard at a 'strong point' on one of the active fronts. During the night his two comrades were killed by enemy shrapnel, and he himself had ugly wounds in his back and leg, from which the blood flowed freely; still he remained at his post. When it was learned that his two comrades had been killed, and he himself wounded, Captain Harry Atwood sent to have the dead and wounded brought in, but Sergeant Gans refused to leave his post, because a sergeant, as he thought was proper, was not there to relieve him. It became necessary for Captain Atwood to order this badly wounded sergeant to leave his post at the point of a bayonet, to secure medical treatment. [Italics added.] All he knew was duty; he was firm in the belief that before he could leave his post for anything, a relief should be there to take his place. As for the theory that soldiers earn medals for their prowess in hand-to-hand fighting, reading down the list of awards to African American soldiers suggests that enlisted men interested in getting a chest full of medals need to stay out of the infantry and instead stay close to the battalion staff. Why do I say that? Well, maybe because most awards listed went not to infantrymen but to runners and supply clerks who delivered the goods despite wounds or heavy fire.


Now, if American history is starting to bore you, then how about South African? Here's the site for a South African Military History Society: http://rapidttp.com/milhist/index.html. While it is mostly (but not entirely) white South African military history, the site still contains items of potential interest to both general and specialist readers.

Announcements (April 2000)

Interested in true crime? Then try http://www.uncjin.org/Statistics/statistics.html, which is the United Nation's crime and justice website, and http://www.crime.org/homepage.html, which is Regina Schekall's "Crime Statistics" site.

Remember the film Bloodsport, starring Jean-Claude Van Damme? According to the credits, it was based in part on the exploits of Frank Dux, who among other things said he spent the early 1970s working as a covert operative for Operation Phoenix in Vietnam. Well, using the Freedom of Information Act, researcher B.G. Burkett obtained a copy of Dux's Marine Corps records, and thereby discovered that Dux served in the Marine Corps Reserve in the US from 1975 to 1981. So, you say? Well, the US left Vietnam in 1972 and the North took it over in 1975. So if Dux's story is true, then it means he worked for Colby before joining the Marines, which seems a little odd. Furthermore, the Marines have no record of Dux ever attending jump school, infantry training, or rating a single decoration for gallantry. For details, see B.G. Burkett's book Stolen Valor: How the Vietnam Generation Was Robbed of Its Heroes and Its History (Verity Press, 1998), ISBN 096670360X; see also the scores of reader reviews at Amazon.com. Still, be careful saying this too loudly -- when Soldier of Fortune praised Burkett's book and published a photo of Lance Corporal Dux wearing Navy jump wings and four rows of ribbons headed by a Navy Cross, the outraged war hero promptly sued the magazine for defamation of character. For details, see Soldier of Fortune, March 1999, page 98. Earlier, Dux also unsuccessfully sued Jean-Claude Van Damme. For details of that, see http://www.courttv.com/trials/vandam/110698.html.

By the end of 2001, the US military expects to replace its existing Winchester, Remington, and Mossberg pump shotguns with Heckler & Koch/Benelli semi-automatic shotguns. The new weapon holds six 12-gauge shells (2-3/4 or 3 inch) and is termed the M1014. It weighs 8.4 pounds unloaded, and its features include a mounting rail for night vision devices, a telescoping stock, a three-point sling, andno bayonet lug. (This latter is somewhat surprising, as I am routinely told how bayonets are a key part of an infantry weapon system.) Advantages attributed to the new weapons include standardized maintenance and a higher rate of fire, especially when fired one-handed or prone. The contract requires the delivery of 3,977 guns at a cost of $3.9 million. Unit cost delivered is therefore $980.64. As a point of interest, the telescoping buttstock and the night vision rails add about two pounds of weight and $300 in cost to the final weapon, and decrease magazine capacity by one round. (The equivalent Benelli Super 90 weighs 6.5 pounds and retails for about $675, and carries seven rather than six rounds.) For additional weapon specifications, see http://www.moreammo.com/xm1014.html.

Back in February I noted the following: "On http://webhome.idirect.com/~lhodgson/index.htm, at a site called "Inside - Camp X," Lynn-Philip Hodgson provides an online image of W.E. Fairbairn -- it's the one from David Stafford's Camp X (New York: Dodd, Mead, and Co., 1987), ISBN 0-396-09096-6, only without attribution to the National Archives and Record Administration." To which Mr. Hodgson replies:

This is not true. I contacted the publishers of 'Camp X ' requesting permission to reprint this and other pictures but was told that they did not have copyright to the picture and that I would have to contact the owner, Robert Stuart. Robert Stuart is a good friend of mine and lives nearby. He is the curator of the 'Robert Stuart Aviation Museum' located at the Oshawa Airport.

I visited Bob at his museum before publishing my book and asked him if he had supplied David Stafford with the some of the pictures in his book. He then proceeded to show me the pictures which he had given David. These pictures were given to Bob by Harry Smith the Camp X photographer.

I then asked him, and received permission to use some of the photos including this one.

I would very much appreciate you posting a retraction. I will be watching for same.

P.S. I am mentioned in the 'Credits' in Stafford's book for contributing to his story.

Yours truly,

Regards, Lynn-Philip Hodgson, Vice President, Camp X Historical Society and author of 'Inside - Camp X', http://webhome.idirect.com/~lhodgson/campx.htm, http://webhome.idirect.com/~lhodgson/consulting.htm , and http://webhome.idirect.com/~lhodgson/home.htm

Announcements (March 2000)

Ralph Peters is a writer and futurist for whom I have great respect. So, for more recent articles by the man, see "Our New Old Enemies," Parameters, 29:2 (Summer, 1999), 22-37, http://carlisle-www.army.mil/usawc/Parameters/99summer/peters1.htm and "Hucksters in Uniform," The Washington Monthly, May 1999, 9-12. I mean, how can you not like the latter article, which starts: "We have entered the age of the impassioned butcher, with a crude weapon in one hand, a cell phone in the other, and hatred in his soul," and concludes, "We [the people of the United States] have an Army run by a 'Board of Directors' that is a combination mafia conference and small-town business club, a Navy intent on fighting the future rather than against our nation's likely enemies, and an Air Force whose only strategy is budgetary gluttony. Something must be done. We are about to spend that trillion dollars (perhaps less, but don't count on it) on an arsenal of mediocrity. If no one rises to lead our military by example, our next significant expenditure may be in lives."

Since 1991 suicide has ranked as the US Marine Corps' second-leading cause of death. (Accidents are Number One. For the past decade, the USMC has averaged about 28 deaths due to suicide per year. That is a rate of about 15.9 per 100,000, and is the highest in the US armed forces.) The statistical average Marine suicide is a white male lance corporal (E-3). He is stationed in the Continental United States, it's about even odds that he is married, and a privately owned firearm is his weapon of choice. Outwardly identifiable risk factors include failing personal relationships (64%), legal problems (40%), financial problems (38%) and alcohol abuse (33%). Peer and leader involvement is the critical suicide prevention tool. This isn't directive pressure, either, but ensuring that the person at risk knows -- not believes, knows -- that he will not lose face within his group by seeking help. For more on the subject, see David E. Jones, "Suicide Prevention in the Marine Corps: A Leader's Guide," Marine Corps Gazette, February 2000, 16-20.

People interested in reading a history of covert operations in Vietnam might want to check out Richard H. Shultz, Jr., The Secret War Against Hanoi: Kennedy's and Johnson's Use of Spies, Saboteurs, and Covert Warriors in Vietnam (New York: HarperCollins Publishers, 1999). By the way, William Colby of the CIA testified that "most of the estimated 20,000 Vietnamese killed in Phoenix operations died in combat situations and not through assassination." If a CIA director says so, it must be true, right?

Announcements (February 2000)

On http://webhome.idirect.com/~lhodgson/index.htm, at a site called "Inside - Camp X," Lynn-Philip Hodgson provides an online image of W.E. Fairbairn -- it's the one from David Stafford's Camp X (New York: Dodd, Mead, and Co., 1987), ISBN 0-396-09096-6, only without attribution to the National Archives and Record Administration. Anyway, Hodgson lives near Toronto, and has done further research on the camp based on interviews and local sources. Hodgson says he has about 100 photos in his book, which can be ordered by contacting him at hodgson@idirect.com. The soft cover is ISBN 0-88962-714-2, and its cost is CDN $ 19.95 plus $ 3.50 shipping & handling. The hard cover ISBN is 0-88962-715-0, and I didn't check the price. I haven't ordered a copy, so this is not an endorsement.

A book I will endorse though, that provides some background on both Fairbairn and Dermot O'Neill (think The Devil's Brigade; O'Neill was the bespectacled close-combat instructor) is Robert W. Smith, Martial Musings (Erie, PA: Via Media Publishing, 1999), ISBN 1-893765-008. You can order copies through the publisher (e-mail info@goviamedia.com) or through Amazon.com. It is available in hardback only, but has over 300 illustrations. Cost is $39.95 plus S&H.

Other websites to check for information about Camp X and related OSS training include http://home.att.net/~governmentdrone/wwii-specialops.htmland http://web.idirect.com/~nfhome/spies.htm. Textually, both Soldier of Fortune and Journal of Asian Martial Arts have published articles about Fairbairn, and several of his books are still in print. Also see Fred Wakeman, Jr. Policing Shanghai 1927-37 (Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 1995; first edition 1955).

Unrelated to Fairbairn, but for an account of Kuwaiti Special Forces training, see http://overseasdigest.com/kajukenbo/intro.htm. The guy sounds plausible, as he says that for training these people, any martial art can work, you just have to make your program fit their rather unusual requirements. But there are many phonies.

People interested in pre-World War II Japanese military swordsmanship and bayonet fighting are advised to check this site: http://www.trifox.com/aux/kenshinkan/toyama02.html. For equivalent US naval training, check out http://www.navyfrogmen.com/.

And yes, if you were wondering, your editor agrees with Navy SEAL Darryl Young, who writes at http://www.navyfrogmen.com/ that "I've always figured when all other weapons systems have been expended, it's time to turn and run. As I was always a much better runner than knife fighter, it seemed smarter to simply come back later with enough ordnance to take care of the situation. That's what Navy SEALs are trained to do; break contact using fire superiority."

Announcements (January 2000)

Readers interested in current US Army how-to material will want to check http://call.army.mil/call.htm . The restricted access site is open to any current US military member or Department of Defense civilian, but the rest of the site is open to the public. Topics of interest include civil disturbance training, night fighting, and military operations on urbanized terrain. Also see http://carlisle-www.army.mil/usassi/ssipubs/stdyprog.htm#Topics, where the US Army's Strategic Studies Institute discusses Military Operations Other Than War.

For an insightful unofficial articles on urban warfare, "Our Soldiers, Their Cities" by Ralph Peters, in Parameters, at http://carlisle-www.army.mil/usawc/parameters/96spring/peters.htm. For the enemy most likely found in those cities, see also Peter's "The New Warrior Class" at http://carlisle-www.army.mil/usawc/parameters/1994/peters.htm.

For an unofficial article on the use and problems of sticky foam, "What Price Sticky Foam," by Martin N. Stanton, at http://carlisle-www.army.mil/usawc/parameters/96autumn/stanton.htm. For additional discussion of non-lethal weapons, see Robert J. Bunker, "Non-lethal Weapons: Terms and References," http://www.usafa.af.mil/inss/ocp15.htm; contributors include the late Rex Applegate and the paper contains an extensive bibliography.

To download the US Army's Infantry Branch School doctrine on tactical nonlethal capabilities, see http://www.benning.army.mil/dcd. You will need Word 6.0 or later. Marine Corps doctrine is at http://www.hqmc.usmc.mil/poswebpage.nsf/852564750060e4c88525645d006f6979/529bac6bf7fa02d685256667005c3c98?OpenDocument .

Announcements (November 1999)

People interested in learning more about US special operations group forces (SEALS, Special Forces, etc.) should visit  http://www.specialoperations.com. Also see  Edwin E. Moïse's bibliography of the Vietnam War at http://hubcap.clemson.edu/~eemoise/bibliography.html#big.

If interested in the Canadian military, check the Naval Museum of Alberta website http://www.navalmuseum.ab.ca/links.html and the Canadian War Museum at http://www.civilization.ca/cwm/cwmeng/cwmeng.html.
For the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, go to http://www.rcmp-grc.gc.ca/html/rcmp2.htm. RCMP officers are currently on peacekeeping missions in Bosnia, East Timor, Haiti, and Guatamala.

The homepage for Marine Security Guard Battalion, which is tasked with providing internal security for US embassies and consulates, is http://www.quantico.usmc.mil/.

The Los Angeles Police Department website is http://www.lapdonline.org/index.htm. From there you can follow links to sites about terrorism and other items of potential professional interest.

JNC 2004