Editor-in-Chief’s Note: Due to the recent events in Connecticut and Colorado, like many of you, I’ve been searching for answers on what can be done to prevent these kind of incidents from occurring. While this article is not meant to detract from what we see time and time again, lack of a means of defense against these threats, I reached out to frequent contributor and former IDF (Israeli Defense Force) soldier Uri Fridman for his thoughts on this.
This article was written by Uri and comes from his perspective as a now US citizen who works as an information security consultant. I’ve been very interested in the Israeli model after their procedures for handling airport security have started to become implemented at Boston Logan International Airport. Please join me in welcoming Uri back with his perspective on these recent events. [Read More…]
I’ve enjoyed a bit of anonymity here at ITS Tactical over the last few years. Bryan and the ITS staff have been very supportive of my request to keep a lot of my personal information private. Those who know me, see that I use a pseudonym on Facebook and other social media sites. Those in Law Enforcement or other sensitive fields do this to keep their families safe.
Today I’m going to step way outside of my comfort zone, as the murders that took place at the Sandy Hook Elementary School have hit me and my family very hard. [Read More…]
At some point in the past you’ve probably heard someone say that their version of camping was staying in a hotel. I know that’s a standard response from some of my friends and family when I’ve told them about a camping trips that Bryan and I planned. I’ve also been guilty of saying that same line a few years back.
Since then, I’ve found that camping is a fun way to relax and spend time with my husband and our son. (Right now it’s one of the few things that helps me relate to our teenager.) It’s also a great way to test my skills when it comes to fire building, knot tying and surviving outside of my comfort zone. Learning to truly enjoy camping has just taken some experience and thoughtful preparing on my part, to make sure I pack what I need to be comfortable on a campout. [Read More…]
A new organization has recently formed, going by Special Operations (OPSEC) Political Committee. From their mission statement and the video you’ll see embedded here below, they’re attempting to put a stop to the leaks occurring within the current and future administrations.
I will also state that in my opinion, the Obama administration has also done a lot of good for our Special Operations community and did credit the success of the UBL operation to the “tireless and heroic work of our military and our counterterrorism professionals.” This doesn’t change the fact that in the same speech announcing the raid, President Obama divulged the name of the unit responsible and their location.
In the video below, you’ll see a few key figures mention that even holding onto the the press release for a day or two could have helped the intelligence community utilize the intel gathered at the raid to their advantage, rather than our enemies knowing publicly that intel had been compromised.
Former Navy SEAL and DEVGRU (Development Group) Operator, Craig Sawyer, recently wrote a fantastic article on OPSEC here on ITS Tactical, which I’d highly recommend you read if you haven’t yet. In it, he calls on citizens, those in the operational community and the media to protect the information that is sensitive to the welfare and success of our troops.
I feel that Sawyer’s article sums it up best, we need to police ourselves. Not only in the ranks of the government, but from within the military and the civilian community as well. I feel this is where the Special Operations (OPSEC) Political Committee could have chosen to direct its energy towards as well.
What’s your opinion of the video below? Do you feel the current administration is leaking too much information?
Handling a firearm may seem pretty common these days, depending on what circle you travel in. But for many people, even a gal who’s married to a tactically-minded guy, training with a firearm isn’t common at all. I guess the old saying of “opposites attract” is definitely true in my case.
There was a time not too long ago when I wasn’t familiar with a handgun, shotgun or any type of rifle. I was in a different mindset. I believed that I could keep myself out of harm’s way just by making certain choices. I parked in well lit areas, I was very cautious about being followed, I tried not to go out by myself late at night, my keys were ready and in hand when I walk to my car and I’ve always been the person who locks the door as soon as its closed.
As time went by and I pulled my head out of the sand, I began to acknowledge that a traumatic or life-threatening event may happen right inside my own home when I least expect it. Or that something may happen while I’m stopped at a light or walking my dog.
What began in my mind as an intermittent reminder that I shouldn’t always rely on my husband to protect me, has become a mission to being prepared if I need to take matters into my own hands. [Read More…]
I’ve recently finished reading a book by Gavin De Becker called The Gift of Fear. While book reviews are something we don’t often cover on ITS, this is a book that I not only feel each of you should read immediately, but that every member of your family should read as well.
This is hands down, one of the best books I’ve ever read and the most applicable to any of the skill-sets we advocate here on ITS. Primarily, what we all encounter on a daily basis, fear of the unknown.
De Becker describes this fear of the unknown as unwarranted and a curse, while advocating true fear as a gift. This book explains how to tell the difference between the two and teaches us how to trust and act on our gut instincts. This book could truly save your life! [Read More…]
I have fond memories of being involved in the Boy Scouts of America from my youth, the majority of those having taken place outdoors and on campouts. I believe scouting is what started my sense of adventure and gave me the confidence needed to explore not just the outdoors, but all aspects of life.
Scouting is that last true organization left in the US that’s promoting the leadership, integrity, confidence and life skills this next generation needs and can’t get anywhere else. Scouting is taking these young men out of their element of video games, socializing and organized sports for just long enough to teach them how to rely on themselves. While there’s certainly a place for team sports and what’s learned there, it’s still very much an “all about me” activity. Today’s sports superstars aren’t helping that stereotype either.
Fundamentally, I feel like this is what’s wrong with society today. People have lost the skill-set that should be held above all others. Self reliance. I don’t mean putting on a tin foil hat and being holed up in a bunker, I mean true self reliance in all aspects of life. [Read More…]
Yesterday morning while stopping at a gas station to put air in my tire, I was approached by a stranger. The first words out of his mouth were to ask “if I was from around here,” immediately sending me into condition orange.
It’s interesting to note that this happened just a day after I sat through a CHL (Concealed Handgun License) renewal class, where we got into a good discussion during the class about muggings, vehicle thefts and how you’d react during those situations.
We all have our preconceived notions of how we’d react in a violent encounter, but the truth is that we’ll never truly know until we’re put in that exact situation. [Read More…]
Whether you live in an area of the country that’s susceptible to tornadoes or not (most are), I hope that the lessons I’ll share in this article will be able to help you solidify your preparedness plans. Let’s face it, no area of the country is immune to natural disasters and while the likelihood of them impacting you personally is low, take a tip from the motto of the Boy Scouts of America and always be prepared.
I have friends that were affected by the tornadoes, but thankfully no more than external damage to their homes in the worst cases. Throughout this article I’ll share a few stories of what they experienced as a way to hammer home a few important lessons to take on board. [Read More…]