Category Archives: Uncategorized

Stay out of trouble

My latest interview on Ballistic Radio.

“One of our very favorite guests, The Tactical Professor Claude Werner returns to the show to discuss a myriad of important topics that we should all consider. What is O.O.D.A. and how do people get it wrong? Why is it important to measure personal performance? Has everyone been pronouncing Claude’s 5x5x5 drill wrong? ALL THAT AND MORE!”

Thinking ahead during the current Insurgency

Part of dealing with the American Insurgency is thinking ahead about what to do when bad things start happening around you. There are no safe places during an insurgency.

Witnesses describe killing of Portland shooter Michael Reinoehl

This was the reaction of one person near the shooting.

“I was sitting in my backyard and all I heard was pop, pop, pop, pop, pop, pop, pop. I was like, oh s–t. I come outside and there’s a million sheriffs out here and there’s a dude laying out here by the mailbox and he’s bleeding. They hit him.”

Note that there were at least 29 rounds fired during the incident. So far, it is unstated how many hit Reinoehl but based on general trends, we can assume that the majority did not. That means at least 15 rounds, perhaps some from rifles, were whizzing around the neighborhood.

According to Wikipedia,,_Washington “Lacey is a city in Thurston County, Washington, United States. It is a suburb of Olympia with a population of 42,393 at the 2010 census.” Lacey is 120 miles from Portland and another State away from where the original murder took place. One lesson for us in this incident is that any place within driving distance of a well-publicized shooting is a possible location for a secondary incident. Kyle Rittenhouse went back to Ill-Annoy after the Kenosha shootings.

If you hear gunfire, don’t go outside to watch or video it. Think ahead about the most bullet resistant places in your home. The bathtub, which hopefully is iron, is an example. Even if it’s not iron, it is at least surrounded and supported by structural members. Rehearse a sheltering plan ahead of time. Make sure your loved ones understand it; they might have to use it when you’re not there. It might look something like this:

  • If and when you hear shooting outside, gather your loved ones and take them to that sheltered place.
  • Take your equipment, including your phone, with you when you take shelter.
  • Don’t let strangers into your home after an incident.
  • Call the POlice and report the gunfire outside.

The most important tool you have during a crisis is the one between your ears. As with almost all tools, it’s better if you sharpen it before you need to use it.

Tactical Professor books are available from the menu at the top of the page.

Friday Fundamentals – Performance Standards

The new NRA Basics of Pistol Shooting passing standard is 5 shots into a 4 inch circle at 10 feet, no time limit. It has to be done four times, not necessarily consecutively.


Without testing, there has been no training

Greg Hamilton

Shooting a pistol is an athletic activity. Like any athletic endeavor, we need to have some performance measurement standards. Measurement is the operative word here. We need to measure our downrange performance, i.e., how well we can hit the target, if we want to become better at shooting. There are numerous variables that can be called into play for measurement.

As an example of athletic measurement, the current US Army standard for my age cohort is a minimum of 27 sit-ups in one minute. More sit-ups means more points scored. The Army Physical Fitness Test has to be taken twice a year.

In weight training, we might simply measure how many repetitions of lifting a given amount of weight we can do until we can’t lift anymore. Over time, our objective is to be able to lift more weight and/or perform…

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What is the value of training?


Firearms instructors are periodically asked the question “Why should I take training?” The answer often comes in the form of a list of skills that are taught or the reasoning behind using a certain technique. However, these do not address the underlying fundamental reasons for taking firearms training at all.

  1. You don’t know what you don’t know.
  2. Much of what you know is wrong.
  3. It’s good to have some of the answers to the test before taking it.

These issues relate to both technical competency with using a firearm (gun safety and marksmanship) and the ability to use the firearm correctly in a personal protection situation (legal and tactical).

You don’t know what you don’t know.

Shooters who only take their gun to an indoor range once a year “to sight it in” generally have a highly ‘cocooned’ knowledge of firearms. They know how to operate a firearm in a…

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Advanced Pistol Practice

The Newhall Incident – April 1970


At 11:55 p.m., April 5, 1970, two Officers of the California Highway Patrol stopped a car for brandishing a firearm at another vehicle hours earlier. Minutes later, they and two other CHP Officers would lie dead in the parking lot of the restaurant where the stop took place. Their murderers would escape into the night, virtually unscathed in the gunfire.

The officers were all young; two were 23 and two were 24. They were all married and had seven children between them. All of them had been CHP officers for less than two years.

Newhall Officers landscape

The murderers were hardened criminals. Both had served prison time and one had killed another prisoner in self-defense while he was confined in Alcatraz. They were heavily armed with revolvers, autoloading pistols, and shotguns in preparation for committing bank robberies and armored truck heists.

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The Medina, North Dakota Shootout

Yesterday was the anniversary of the Medina Shootout. One of the main lessons is how devastating long guns are when used at pistol distances.


Thirty-five years ago today, on February 13, 1983, a violent gunbattle took place in Medina, North Dakota. Although less well known than the Miami Massacre in 1986, it was every bit as bloody and violent. Something it had in common with the Miami Massacre was preparation for conflict and the decisiveness of long guns at pistol ranges.

On one side was a task force of US Marshals and local law enforcement officers. On the other side were members of a local Posse Comitatus group. Casualties were high on both sides. Four months later, a second related encounter, hundreds of miles away, brought more loss of life.

The Prelude

Gordon Kahl was a Midwestern farmer and Federal tax resister. He was a member of a loosely knit organization called the Posse Comitatus. The Posse recognizes no authority above the county level and held many hateful beliefs. He had been imprisoned for…

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The Telephone Game and the Training Industry

In a broader context, the Telephone Game issue has just surfaced in Broward Sheriff Scott Israel’s ‘suspension’ that was reported in the national media without actually having happened.


Telephone [in the United States]  –is an internationally popular game, in which one person whispers a message to the ear of the next person through a line of people until the last player announces the message to the entire group. Although the objective is to pass around the message without it becoming misheard and altered along the way, part of the enjoyment is that, regardless, this usually ends up happening.

Often, a message that starts out like “My uncle shook hands with the Mayor once” eventually turns into “President Reagan’s grandmother slept with Batman for years” or something equally mistransmitted.

Telephone game issues plague the firearms training industry and are a problem. Several occurrences of it have been brought to my attention just this week. One of the most important things I’ve learned in the training industry is to assume everything that anyone tells me secondhand is wrong. Whenever possible…

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Gary T.

Gary T., formerly of the 3d Brigade, 101st Airborne Division, the email address you gave me doesn’t work.

screaming eagle

Holster retention systems and sloppy research

Still a great deal of confusion and misinformation about this topic floating around.


A few people drink from the fountain of knowledge but most only gargle.

Gun Digest recently published an online article about holster retention systems. The article begins by referencing Safariland’s retention holster rating system as being the standard. Unfortunately, the author, Corey Graff, should have done a little research and contacted Safariland about their retention rating system before writing about it.

That system, devised by Bill Rogers, the inventor of the modern security holster, has nothing to do with the number of mechanisms that the holster has. Corey’s interpretation is a common misconception in the industry. Safariland’s system is based on a series of hands-on performance tests in which the holster is physically attacked and tested. The holster must pass, in sequential order, each test to achieve a given level of rating. A holster can have several mechanisms on it and still not achieve any rating at all…

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