Sunday, November 1, 2009

Notes on Camouflage, Cover & Concealment

Surviving TEOTWAWKI (The End Of The World As We Know It) will probably be more about building self-sustaining communities in the aftermath than gun fighting, still you'll need to know how to defend yourself, your family and your community. This crash course in tactics won't make you into a gunslinger, but it will give you a better chance of survival.

Here are the definitions of Camouflage, Cover and Concealment along with a few tips that could save your life.

• CAMOUFLAGE is the art of blending in with surroundings. Those big blotches on camo uniforms are meant to break up the outline so the wearer blends in with whatever s/he’s amongst. Camouflage in blending in it isn't necessarily being behind something else.

• COVER is something that will stop a bullet: a rock wall, telephone pole, metal mailbox, etc. Please note that what may be cover from a pistol bullet may be only concealment from a rifle bullet.

• CONCEALMENT is anything that hides you, but won’t stop a bullet. A bush is concealment. A big tree is cover. Those blue metal mailboxes are cover. Cover by definition is concealment, but concealment is not necessarily cover.

Fear and movie emulation incline us to hug whatever we’re hiding behind if someone is shooting at us. Tree hugging may have been an advantageous adaptation millenniums ago when dodging lions and tigers and bears, but we’ve got guns now so leave tree hugging to environmentalists and take advantage of the opportunities technology offers.

If you’ve taken tree-hugging cover behind one of those blue U.S. mailboxes, your field of fire is roughly 90° unless you peek over the top and expose your eyes and brain to harmful flying objects. Instead, take a step back.

By stepping back, you give yourself room to bring your weapon up to firing position and point it toward your adversary’s position and align the sights BEFORE exposing yourself to bring front sight to bear on target. Once an aimed shot has been delivered to the identified target, simply leaning back places you behind cover again. Your foray into the land of ricochet is much shorter.

A helpful hint from Rick O’chet:
If someone’s going postal in your vicinity those big blue boxes aren’t necessarily the best cover. The chink in post office armor is the legs, which allow an adversary to see/shoot under the big blue box. If no other cover is available, just hope your adversary isn’t an advanced student of weapon craft and send him a special delivery before s/he can post any more airmail.

In upcoming articles I'll discuss TEOTWAWKI (The End Of The World As We Know It), preparing for it and other emergencies. You'll learn what foods to buy/store, water requirements for you and your family and how (and where) to shelter after disaster.

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