The American Militia
"[G]overnment's view of the economy could be summed up in a few short
phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if
it stops moving, subsidize it."
The quote above comes from President Regan from his "Remarks to the
White House Conference on Small Business", Aug. 15, 1986
Is this what is meant by Regulation?
It seems that the same problems keep recurring year after year, even
century after century. Immediately after the Civil War the Union
Army studied the marksmanship of US rifle men and found their
proficiency lacking (to be kind). It appears that hitting a target
was not the main concern of many of the troops. Muskets recovered
from the battle field were examined and often found to contain
multiple unfired loads, sometimes more than a dozen. One would think
that the trooper would notice his ramrod was getting longer with each
shot, or that through lack of recoil or report, that a shot had not
even been properly fired. Such is the fog of war I guess.
The American Militia should know better.
In WWI approximately one ton of munitions were expended for each
enemy hit. In Vietnam a horrendous quantity of munitions were
expended for each hit. Ammo was cheap (and light too with the 5.56mm
mouse guns, but that is another story). What was the tactic at that
time, to just keep hammering away on full auto and keep the bad guys
ducking so quick they will not have a chance to shoot back? I guess
the troops abandoned the training that says that if you HIT THE
ENEMY, then they can NOT shoot back; not ever. Aimed fire was a
thing of the past.
The American Militia knew better.
Things were not always so. The fight for liberty, begun in 1775,
was carried mostly at first by "minutemen" or those Citizens of the
Militia who stood ready at a minutes notice to answer the call to
defend a community. They valued the ability to load and fire one
aimed shot to hit your target. The process of aimed fire was
relatively slow and therefore could be expensive if you did not hit
your target. You could not afford to waste that expensive shot. The
minutemen turned out self trained in that ability, and with their own
equipment, to band together with their companions for a length of
time. They stood in the gap and then were slowly augmented by the
standing army that was being assembled to wage a much larger
The Citizen army of 1775 held the line until more force could be
applied. They were good at what they did but a bit lacking in battle
discipline of the day. Perhaps they were too smart to stand shoulder
to shoulder and "receive the enemy fire" in closed ranks. The
tactics chosen by them, aimed fire from cover and the hit and run
engagement, was ideal for the small and loose but mobile force of
minutemen. It was what they had learned in hunting, to stalk and
take the important target. It was "hit and run", sometimes running
too soon, that most likely earned them some level of scorn in the
eyes of the "regulars". They had learned to fight to win, not taught
to stand and die. They were thought of as barbarians for not
conforming to the "gentlemanly etiquette of war". They picked off
the enemy leaders because they new the cost of the engagement and the
value of their chosen targets. They were comfortable on the move
with a variety of weapons at the ready. They were well "regulated",
or conditioned, with their native knowledge, equipment and ability
with firearms, if not in the marching discipline of "Napoleonic"
Things changed and it appears some native firearms wisdom was lost
in the Civil War. Immediately after that war, about 1871 or so,
several Union Army officers came together to form an association
dedicated to the improvement of military marksmanship through
civilian education. Not much later, around the time of WWI, a
Civilian Marksmanship Program was enacted by Congress to try to
improve marksmanship after that conflict too. The 1871 association
became known as The National Rifle Association and both it and the
1919 CMP are still around. They are still trying to promote civilian
marksmanship so that the armed forces of the United States will have
a well regulated pool of recruits to draw on. They train the
Why should the civilians in the USA be well regulated, or in the
vernacular of 1775 self instructed and equipped, able to take the
field properly armed and trained? Of course, to be as effective as
possible on short notice, and therefore efficient to train for the
long run because they have a good basic foundation to start from.
But how about to stay alive. Take a look at this news story. It
has been edited only slightly for relevance.
Army makes soldiers get comfortable carrying weapons
By: MICHAEL FELBERBAUM - Associated Press
PETERSBURG, Va. -- In the early months of the war in Iraq, Army Spc.
Paul J. Sturino was getting ready for guard duty one day when another
soldier accidentally fired a bullet into his neck. "Somehow it went
off," his mother Christine Wetzel said as she recounted the official
reports documenting her 21-year-old son's death on Sept. 22, 2003.
"I just think we're sending young, young people into situations that
they're not ready for," she said from her home in Rice Lake, Wis.
"They're inexperienced with weapons. ... Things happen and we pay the
The Army has begun taking steps to reduce accidental discharges
through a new weapons immersion program fully implemented this year
throughout the Army's 16 training facilities.
Sturino, assigned to the 101st Airborne Division based at Fort
Campbell, Ky., was one of 21 soldiers killed by accidental discharges
in the combat zones of Iraq and Afghanistan since 2003, according to
the Army's Combat Readiness Center. Eighty-nine others were injured.
"Losing one U.S. soldier because of a negligent discharge or not
handling the weapon right is one too many," said Col. Paul Fortune,
commander of the 23rd Quartermaster Brigade at Fort Lee, near
Petersburg and 25 miles south of Richmond.
"Most likely we're going to Iraq, and when we get there, if you
don't handle your weapon during training, you're going to forget,"
Dykeman said. "It helps you get closer to your weapon, know the
characteristics, know what your rifle can do, so when you're out
there in the field, you know how to keep yourself safe." The program
is significantly reducing negligent discharges, said Col. Kevin A.
Shwedo, director of operations, plans and training for the Army
Accessions Command. The average company used to experience about five
negligent discharges every four hours. Now, he said, "if you hear a
single discharge, that's a lot."
"It's a constant practice to teach them these rules and
responsibilities," Fortune said before checking weapons at random in
the cafeteria. "We want to teach them that there is no such thing as
the front line." In recent years, the only time soldiers at Fort Lee
would see their weapons was when they practiced shooting. Commanders
say the change reflects the need for soldiers to be ready to engage
in the military actions in Iraq and Afghanistan.
And Wetzel, who lost her son, agrees with that logic. "I wholly
endorse more contact with those weapons under safe circumstances ...
to have more exposure to that weapon and more safety training,"
Wetzel said, adding that both of her sons had only one week of total
weapon training when they entered the Army. "It should be second
nature: safety first."
"We have got to prepare every soldier for the possibility that they
would go immediately in to fight," Shwedo said. The program is part
of the Army's new initiative to make training more relevant and apply
lessons learned from troops coming back from deployment. "We save
lives every day that we train soldiers how to properly handle their
weapons," he said.
On the Net--Training and Doctrine Command
Now think about this. Notice how the AP writer and the relative
speak of "Accidental discharge". "Somehow it went off". The Army
spokesperson speaks of "Negligent Discharge".
He is right; there is NO SUCH THING as an accidental discharge, they
are ALL negligent because someone forgot a lesson, forgot the basic
safety rules, forgot safe procedures. Folks have been trying to
teach this to the Citizens who make up our pool of recruits for
years, from as early as 1871 and before. The lesson has been in
small part forgotten. Unfortunately, the lesson in a major part has
been DENIED. Firearm instruction is not permitted today in about 98%
of schools. Firearm competency is frowned upon, even actively hated
in much of urban society. The Immediate loss is of the lives of
volunteer soldiers who are at the mercy of some poorly educated
riflemen. Children and adults alike have no idea how to deal with
firearms when they are encountered in real life. Learning firearm
handling from Hollywood movies certainly sets civilians up for
disaster. The long term loss from no education or improper education
may be our liberty and the freedom of our country. We have no
universal pool of Minutemen to stand in the breach and defend our
country in the face of foreign attack. We have no minutemen to rally
to the call to oppose tyranny from within. We have no minutemen to
come to the general aid when disaster strikes.
The American Militia knows of this problem, that is why its members
educate themselves and then train, condition and equip themselves to
be on guard, effective and safe. He works with others to be ready to
stand-up when called and be effective from day one. Having trained
and equipped on his own, he will be more easily educated to work as a
company and to be able to educate others in that company to fight.
He knows the "Regulation" does not mean to be confined or restricted
by government rules. Instead he is part of a smoothly operating
(well regulated) group, one that is self supplied and educated, thus
able to act alone or in small intimate groups with little or no
outside influence. He learns much today so that in the future, if
need be, he can be that "Army of One".
The American Militia is all around you. He better be, for the sake
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