U.S. Army’s base element for CQB relies on a four-man team. During the height of fighting in Iraq in the mid-2000s, SF found the four-man stack lacking when faced with real close-quarters combat. Photo: courtesy DOD

CLOSE-QUARTERS BATTLE: You’re Doing It Wrong

Stacking up—entering a room to conduct close-quarters battle (CQB)—is one of the most dangerous tasks a Soldier or law enforcement officer may have to face. Some of the hardest CQB fighting U.S. forces faced was during the U.S occupation of Iraq in the mid-2000s, from the 1st and 2nd Battles of Fallujah to taking on

Read more »

Read more »

Marines with 2nd Battalion, 1st Marines prepare to clear building after throwing flashbang at Camp Pendleton, California in 2014. Photo: U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Joshua Murray / Released

GET THE MOST FLASHBANG FOR YOUR BUCK: Training With Distraction Devices

The noise flash diversionary device (NFDD), also commonly referred to as a flash sound diversionary device (FSDD), diversionary device, Distraction Device®, flash grenade, or flashbang, is an essential tool of the trade for tactical teams. NFDDs produce dramatic pyrotechnics that are intended to provide a brief distraction without causing permanent injury. Although often used generically,

Read more »

Read more »

Practicing potential responses to a threat may increase your effectiveness. Author practices addressing a threat through passenger window of her vehicle.

MENTAL TOUGHNESS: Fighting Edge for Women

This year in the White Mountains of Arizona, a 43-year-old woman was killed by a 14-year-old boy. The boy had broken into the woman’s home. She confronted him with her pistol and proceeded to call her lawyer husband, who was 200 miles away, on her phone. While he listened helplessly, his wife attempted to talk

Read more »

Read more »

Close supervision is mandatory when instructing young shooters.

MENTORING NEW SHOOTERS: Training the Next Generation

We’ve all seen Internet videos of someone trying a high-powered gun for the first time. Often it ends with an incident of “scope-eye,” a bruised shoulder, dropped weapon, or busted lip. These incidents are supposed to be funny examples of shooting novices grabbing a tiger by the tail. Regardless of spilled blood or damaged limbs,

Read more »

Read more »

There are obvious clues to the subject of this photograph. Hint: It’s not the big pointy thing.

TRAVELER’S TRAUMA TIPS Risk Mitigation

I’m just back from a marvelous month-long vacation in Paris, France. Despite the increased security across the board, the intrusions were reasonable, the crowds cooperative, and the sites wonderful. But as part of my pre-trip planning, I did a risk assessment and performed risk mitigation. Here is how it goes in a place where wits

Read more »

Read more »

Clemente points out long-range targets to three-man fire team situated along high ground’s military crest.

ASSAULT ON RUSTIC RIDGE Combatics Training

Hill fighting in Vietnam, especially for the majority of us “flatlanders,” was among the toughest terrain to trade bullets on. The enemy not only enjoys the high ground, but can be dug in and almost impervious to an array of supporting arms. Given lots of vegetation, the enemy is almost impossible to spot until you

Read more »

Read more »