Blast from the past: “eBooks or Printed media, which is best for a Survival Library?”

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Hello my friend and welcome back! Today I have a blast from the past for you and I would really like to hear you thoughts on it.  eBooks or Printed media?  This is a…

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Tactical Vest For The Prepper

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The tactical vest is not only for the military operator, public safety professionals, or general enthusiasts, but they are for the serious prepper who is planning and training for level-3,4 SHTF preparedness. What is a tactical vest for? It primarily enables the operator to carry their gear in a secure and comfortable way. What gear […]

Video Monday: Florida sheriff is urging citizens to arm themselves in preparation for terror attacks

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Hello my friend and welcome back!  In today’s video, I have one that was just uploaded to YouTube a few days ago and if you haven’t seen it, you need to.  It’s from a…

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The 8 most likely disaster Scenarios Countdown: Number three (Civil War)

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Hello, my friend and welcome back! Today we continue with our eight most likely Disaster Scenarios countdown.  Today we have scenario number three which is Civil War, so grab a cup of coffee my…

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The 8 most likely Disaster Scenarios Countdown: Scenario number Four (Economic Collapse).

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Hello, my friend and welcome back!  Today we have number Four in our 8 most likely Disaster Scenarios Countdown:  “Economic Collapse” is one of those Disaster Scenarios that we hear are imminent every day….

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The 8 most likely disaster Scenarios Countdown: Number Five (Nuclear Attack)

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Hello, my friend and welcome back!  Today we’re going to look at number five in the countdown “Nuclear Attack”.  Depending on how you see the world, you may feel this one should be lower…

The post The 8 most likely disaster Scenarios Countdown: Number Five (Nuclear Attack) appeared first on American Preppers Online.

Review: 10 in 1 Paracord EDC Keychain with Waterproof Pill Bottle from SurvivalHax.com

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Hello, my friend and welcome back!  The good people at SurvivalHax.com sent me one of their 10 in 1 Paracord EDC Keychain with Waterproof Pill Bottles to review.  In today’s post, we are going…

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Reload: Cyber attack, what you don’t know could get you killed!

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When most people think of a cyber-attack, they think of someone stealing data or something to that effect. The truth could not be farther from the truth. In today’s post, we are going to…

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Secure This House

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1_secure_this_house_featured

2_secure_this_houseConsider any house, any house at random, or own your house.  You’ve decided, for a whole host of practical and realistic reasons, that if and when a significant SHTF occurs, a Bug In is your best option.  After all, this is your home.  You’ve lived there for years in relative comfort.  You know every inch of it.  You know your neighbors, well, at least by sight anyway, or you should.  

By Dr. John J. Woods, a contributing author to SHTFBlog & Survival Cache

For years you have worked on a prepping plan that hopefully would allow you and your family to survive at a fairly decent level of comfort during any SHTF or disaster aside from one that completely destroys your residence.  This plan did not come easy or without some discomfort or sacrifice especially financially.  You are convinced though, you made the right choices so far and for the most part your family is on board, though their doubts may linger.

Related: Fortifying Your Home

Your survival stocks of essential goods include food, water, medical, sanitary, and the basic gear to get by.   All the same stuff that would be in a Bug Out Bag is at the house in storage containers and safe boxes.  Oh, you did a BOB just in case, too.  You think you have all your bases covered.  

Still you fine tune and home, but feel pretty confident you can withstand a SHTF, at least for a good while.  But, what else?  Maybe other fears continue to haunt you?

A Man’s Home is his Castle

3_secure_this_houseHow secure is your house after all?  Could it be breached, easily or with considerable effort?  How much detailing have you put into making your physical residence as break in proof as possible once a SHTF siren goes off?  Eventually, count on people milling around investigating who is home, what is easy to take, or how to get inside your house. Recall the movie Purge?  Yeah, I know, its Hollywood, but the scenario portrayed is none the less pretty scary.  That house was secure, or so they thought.  They had steel shutters that closed and locked electronically over every window and door entry.  Their “lock down” for the Purge was over the top.  Well, I know the system was unlocked from the inside for the movie plot to play out, but the purge pranksters (neighbors by the way) were able to attach chains to the front door and jerk off all the security armament they had in place.  Just saying.  

So, let’s play a game, one that could save your life.  It’s actually fun.  You can do it yourself, with family, or perhaps a prepper teammate or somebody else you know that is prepping like you are.  Exchange the favor to help each other out.  

Being the devil’s advocate is always fun.  Take a legal pad and a red pen.  Walk around your house from the outside noting every weakness you can find that could be exploited by somebody wanting to break into your house during dire circumstances like a SHTF.  

Now, this analysis helps, too, in cases of pure crime like breaking and entering, or robbery, but now we’re talking a full bore SHTF where people are thirsty, hungry, in need of help, or just want to take what you have and kill you in the process.  This could and does happen during real survival disaster situations.  

Repel from the Outside

4_secure_this_houseThe more hardened you can make your house during a SHTF, the more likely you are to repel unwanted advances or threats to your security.  During your walk around take note of these usual weaknesses.  All entry points, doors, windows, garage, patio, fireplace chimney, roof, attic vent outside access points, any place or weak spot that could be opened, pried open, cut into, hacked into, or where an otherwise forced upon entry could be made.  

How protected or locked down, sealed from outside tampering are your utility connections including electricity, natural gas, and water?  This might also include sewer and certainly an external power generator.  These could be cut off in order to force you out of the house.  During a SHTF, devise some way to add extra security to these key resources.  

It is common during hurricanes for residents and business people to cover their doors and windows with heavy duty plywood for protection.  Perhaps such “shutters” could be custom made for your house and stored in the garage.  Special break proof glass could be installed in windows, but the cost factors may well be out of reason.  Seek other options.  

All normal entry points should be double secured with multiple locking systems particularly hardened physical dead bolts and slide locks, not just electronic locks.  Replace exterior wooden doors with steel doors with minimal windows.  A viewing port though would be valuable.  Garage doors should be hardened too, with inside slide locks or lock jams.  

As you do the security analysis of your home from the outside, just ask yourself, “If I could get into this door or that window, or drop a fire cocktail down an open chimney top, then so could anybody else intent on breaking in as well or indeed forcing an evacuation.”

Defend from the Inside

6_The_outlaw_josey_walesIn the movie The Outlaw Josey WalesI always liked those window shutters the old adobe house had so that gun barrels could be moved in a “T” fashion or like a cross port, both up and down, and right or left.  Any defender inside the house could see out of those slits, but also see well enough to shoot out of them.  Outsiders found it hard to target these shutter openings.  I wonder if SHTF shutters could be fashioned like those designed to secure a door or window but still allow them to be shot out of.  Something to ponder I guess.  The point being, if you Bug In and your house is more or less on a security lock down, you may still have to defend your positions from inside the house, aka The Alamo.  Sounds easy, but much more difficult to deploy with doors and windows shut.  Even shooting out an open door or cracked open window can be problematic if not practiced.   This is a training drill you will need to practice.  Do not fail to consider defense of all sides of your house.  

If you live in a two-story house, then the second floor could offer a defensive advantage being able to oversee advancement threats below.  There may also be ways to deploy roofline defenses from the rear of the house.  If your house has dormers with windows, these may be defensive positions as well.  All the possibilities need to be explored.  

Check Out: Handling an Active Shooter Situation

Regardless, you will need plans for defending multiple points of potential attack on your residence.  Hopefully you have other adults or responsible youth that can help out, too.  They will need training, weapons, ammo, and gear of their own or a shared arsenal with ample back up supplies.  

Securing your Bug In residence takes on considerable complications.  Defending it requires even more planning, preparation, practice and execution.  Of course your intent is to survive a SHTF, whatever it is, so step up your prepping plan a few more notches beyond sustenance basics.  There will likely be the opportunity to test it out eventually.  

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Video Monday: How to use a Compass – easy compass navigation with the Silva 1-2-3 system .

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Hello, my friend and welcome back!  I recently received an email from a reader asking for information on how to use a compass when reading a map.  In today’s post, I have a short…

The post Video Monday: How to use a Compass – easy compass navigation with the Silva 1-2-3 system . appeared first on American Preppers Online.

Scavenging for supplies in a post SHTF world will be more dangerous than you think.

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Hello, my friend and welcome back!  Most of us have never had to scavenge for food or anything else for that matter.  In a post SHTF world, when you run out of food or…

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Bugging out on foot is a risky proposition at best, and one to be avoided if possible.

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Hello, my friend and welcome back!  There are a lot of Preppers who plan on bugging out on foot when the time comes.  Maybe it’s to get to their bug out location unnoticed, but…

The post Bugging out on foot is a risky proposition at best, and one to be avoided if possible. appeared first on American Preppers Online.

Having a good well trained dog is an important part of any preparedness plan!

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Hello, my friend and welcome back!   We often talk about things that can make the difference between life and death when disaster strikes, but did you know that having a well-trained dog is one…

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Video Monday: Should you learn how to conduct security patrols, SUT, Team skills, etc…?

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Hello, my friend and welcome back!  While searching for a video for you today, I found one that I think may answer the question that many of you ask yourself.  Why should I learn…

The post Video Monday: Should you learn how to conduct security patrols, SUT, Team skills, etc…? appeared first on American Preppers Online.

War clubs and weapons you can make yourself that will make others think twice about challenging you!

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Hello, my friend and welcome back! One of my readers emailed me a picture of a War Hammer he made from things he had lying around his garage.  I have to tell you, this…

The post War clubs and weapons you can make yourself that will make others think twice about challenging you! appeared first on American Preppers Online.

When the unexpected happens, will you be ready to bring your preps with you?

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Hello my friend and welcome back!  Last August the area of the US was hit with heavy rains and historic flooding.  Because my home has never flooded, I didn’t consider the possibility of flood. …

The post When the unexpected happens, will you be ready to bring your preps with you? appeared first on American Preppers Online.

Surviving in the dark will be much harder than you think, here’s why and how you can improve your chances.

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Hello my friend and welcome back! Surviving when SHTF hits will be tough, that’s a given.  But somehow when most of us think about surviving, we tend to focus on surviving in the daylight,…

The post Surviving in the dark will be much harder than you think, here’s why and how you can improve your chances. appeared first on American Preppers Online.

How do I protect my power system against an EMP or another Carrington Event?

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Hello my friend and welcome back! I received a letter from one of my readers who goes by the name of Dan.  What he wants to know is how he can protect his wind…

The post How do I protect my power system against an EMP or another Carrington Event? appeared first on American Preppers Online.

A Pack Of Predators Rely On Their Numbers To Prey On The Weak

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Predators run in packs. Predators will instinctively prey on the weak – especially those separated from the herd. Predators are opportunists looking for easy targets first. Not only is this true for the four legged predator but also the two legged variety. Again last night as I listened to the squealing and howling pack of […]

Part 2: Creating your own Emergency Communications Center for your Bug Out Location.

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Hello my friend and welcome back! In part 2 of this post, we are going to look at camp communications, as well as what frequencies and websites you will want to monitor.  Grab a…

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Part 1: Creating your own Emergency Communications Center for your Bug Out Location.

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Hello, my friend and welcome back! No matter whether you are bugging in or bugging out, you need to have an Emergency Communications area in your shelter.  I think most people realize the need…

The post Part 1: Creating your own Emergency Communications Center for your Bug Out Location. appeared first on American Preppers Online.

Being a creature of habit could get you killed when it all goes south.

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Hello my friend and welcome back! In today’s post, we are going to look at how dangerous being creatures of habit can be in a SHTF situation. Grab a cup of coffee, my friend,…

The post Being a creature of habit could get you killed when it all goes south. appeared first on American Preppers Online.

The term “family” will take on a whole new meaning after SHTF hits.

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Hello, my friend and welcome back!  Many people these days think of blood relatives when you say family, but that won’t be true after SHTF.  Grab a cup of coffee and have a seat…

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Caring for your family in a post SHTF world and what you should be aware of!

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Hello, my friend and welcome back!  When SHTF hits, your primary responsibility will be to provide for your family and protect them.  There are a few things that you might not have given much…

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What’s really behind all of the “Fake News” reports the media is publicizing!

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Hello, my friend and welcome back!  Towards the end of the election and afterward, we started hearing a lot about so called “Fake News”  from all of the major news media and even Facebook. …

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What are the chances of the US being hit by an EMP before Trump is inaugurated?

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Hello, my friend and welcome back!  I always try to create my post based on what is on most Preppers minds at the time.  I constantly solicit ideas from you, my readers as well…

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Things are going to get ugly, so stay on your toes and be aware of what’s around you!

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Hello, my friend and welcome back!  Tuesday, Donald Trump was elected to be the 45th US President and many groups have promised violence if that happened.  Members of BLM have said many times that…

The post Things are going to get ugly, so stay on your toes and be aware of what’s around you! appeared first on American Preppers Online.

God blessed America and “We the People” have a second chance!

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Hello, my friend and welcome back!  WOW, what an amazing night!  Presidential Nominee did what many people considered impossible and will become the 45th president of the United States;I couldn’t be more excited abut…

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Intro to Intelligence for Preppers

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Tornadoes, flooding, and wildfires are just three examples of localized and very personal SHTF events that we’ve seen in the past year, and they illustrate the devastation of an event for which there is immediate early warning. We can be alerted to a tornado warning and seek cover. We can vacate our homes in case of flooding or an approaching wildfire. As we deal in the likelihood of SHTF scenarios, Mother Nature is 100%.

 

But on a regional or national scale, we’re looking at more unpredictable events for which there is little to no early warning: an electromagnetic pulse, or perhaps a cyber attack on critical infrastructure, or a financial or monetary breakdown that plunges millions into a very real SHTF scenario. The cyber attack on the New York Stock Exchange will have no direct effect on you, but the second- and thirdorder effects will be felt on every level and generate threats to your community. So what we should be preparing for is not the cyber attack itself, but for the follow-on effects of that cyber attack that will affect your community.

 

Regardless of the event, we need to be able to collect information to support decision making so we can keep our families safe. Should we bug in or bug out? If bugging out, which route should we take? If bugging in, how can we get early warning of approaching threats?

 

How to Remain At Ease in a SHTF Situation

 

I’m going to break down a few ways that we can reduce the uncertainty in an SHTF situation. I spent three years in Iraq and Afghanistan, and both of those countries were real life or death, 24/7 SHTF situations. As an intelligence analyst, my job was to keep the commander informed on the security situation and threat environment. His responsibility was to make decisions based on the intelligence we provided. If we had no incoming information, then we couldn’t produce intelligence. And this is why information is the basic building block of community security. If we want security in an SHTF scneario, then we need to know more about the threats. What we need is real-time intelligence.

 

In 2014, a small group of volunteers and I battle tracked the Ferguson riots. The first step of battle tracking began with a process I call Intelligence Preparation of the Community. (You can watch the entire webinar here.) We analyzed the strength, disposition, and capabilities of local security forces. Knowing what equipment they had enabled us to better understand how they would react to unrest. We similarly analyzed the protest groups and identified associated individuals.

 

What both of these groups had in common is that they were both producing information of intelligence value. Through something as simple as listening to the police scanner, our team was able to plot out the current reported locations of law enforcement and the National Guard. Meanwhile on Twitter, we scanned the accounts of known protestors for real-time information.

 

In the image below, we took information reported on local emergency frequencies and potted those locations on the map using Google Earth.’Warfighter 33′ was the callsign for the National Guard Tactical Operations Center, which was set up in the Target parking lot. We also pinned several National Guard posts as they reported their locations. It wasn’t rocket science, but it started to help us understand the security situation. This is a very rudimentary form of signals intelligence, or SIGINT.

 

forwardobserver

Through the night, we continued to use photographs uploaded into social media and news articles in order to identify the photos’ locations. Then we plotted them on a map. Pretty soon, we have a very good idea of which areas were generally safe and which areas had the most activity as the riots progressed and eventually burnt out. Had we lived in Ferguson, we could have used this intelligence to navigate our way to friends and family, or to help friends and family navigate away from the threats. All this information was publicly available, so we call it Open Source Intelligence, or OSINT.

 

So what do I do if there’s a grid-down situation?

 

That certainly complicates things. Before I answer that question, I want to ask you one: on a scale of 1 to 10, how important is intelligence in a SHTF situation? (I would say 10, but I am admittedly a bit biased.)

 

First understand that there may still be electricity in a grid-down environment. As long as there are generators, and given that there’s not been an EMP, then someone somewhere will have electricity. My local law enforcement agency claims to have enough fuel for two weeks of backup power were things were to go sideways. That’s good to know, and is the benefit of intelligence collection before an SHTF event, as opposed to a post-SHTF scramble. If they’re powered up and communicating in a SHTF situation, or perhaps some ham radio operators are, then we still need the capabilities to listen in. Otherwise, we’re going to be at a severe disadvantage.

 

If there’s no power, then we’ll have to rely on Human Intelligence, called HUMINT. That means getting out and talking to people. It could mean a reconnaissance patrol. The horse-mounted cavalry were the eyes and ears of the commander before collection technology. Snipers and forward observers sitting in hide sides, whose responsibility it is to observe and report enemy activity, are often excellent intelligence collectors. An observation post equipped with a field phone, sending back intelligence information is another example.

 

While these are all military examples, there are similar community equivalents. Consider this: technology is a force multiplier. With SIGINT or OSINT, we can be very wide and very deep in our intelligence gathering. That’s a 1:n ratio. We have one collection platform, in this case a radio receiver, and we can scan a very wide band to collect information from anyone who’s transmitting. But when we deal with human intelligence, we’re often on a 1:1 ratio; that is, one collector speaking to one source at any given time. That’s a very slow and difficult way to do business.

 

So instead of 1:1, I want you to consider the scalability of that ratio. If one person is limited to gathering intelligence information from one person at at time, wouldn’t it makes sense to scale that ratio to 10:10 or 100:100? It absolutely would. Every set of eyes and ears is a sensor, so we as an intelligence element tasked with providing intelligence for community security should absolutely be interested in encouraging community members to passively collect lots of information. All that information is reported back to us, and then we’re engaged in the arduous task of compiling and evaluating that information in order to create intelligence.

 

Intelligence doesn’t produce itself, so it’s incumbent on us to build that capability. The more accurate information we have, the more wellinformed we can be. Without first being well-informed, making high-risk, time-sensitive decisions just got a whole lot more complicated.

 

Samuel Culper is the director of Forward Observer, a threat intelligence service that focuses on domestic SHTF issues. He’s a former military and contract intelligence analyst, and author of SHTF Intelligence: An Intelligence Analyst’s Guide to Community Security. You can find out more about the SHTF Intelligence Center at his website.

Being prepared is no guarantee that you will survive, but what else will it take?

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Hello, my friend and welcome back!  I think that most Preppers realize that simply having supplies stored up will not be enough.  The question is what else do you need to do to ensure…

The post Being prepared is no guarantee that you will survive, but what else will it take? appeared first on American Preppers Online.