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What good can a handgun do against an Army?

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by funnybone, Jul 7, 2008.

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  1. funnybone

    funnybone Member

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    United States Flag - God Bless America What good can a handgun do against an Army?
    Saturday, July 5, 2008
    What good can a handgun do against an Army?
    By Mike Vanderboegh



    A friend of mine recently forwarded me a question a friend of his had posed:


    "If/when our Federal Government comes to pilfer, pillage, plunder our property and destroy our lives, what good can a handgun do against an army with advanced weaponry, tanks, missiles, planes, or whatever else they might have at their disposal to achieve their nefarious goals? (I'm not being facetious: I accept the possibility that what happened in Germany, or similar, could happen here; I'm just not sure that the potential good from an armed citizenry in such a situation outweighs the day-to-day problems caused by masses of idiots who own guns.)"



    If I may, I'd like to try to answer that question. I certainly do not think the writer facetious for asking it. The subject is a serious one that I have given much research and considerable thought to. I believe that upon the answer to this question depends the future of our Constitutional republic, our liberty and perhaps our lives. My friend Aaron Zelman, one of the founders of Jews for the Preservation of Firearms Ownership told me once:

    "If every Jewish and anti-nazi family in Germany had owned a Mauser rifle and twenty rounds of ammunition AND THE WILL TO USE IT (emphasis supplied, MV), Adolf Hitler would be a little-known footnote to the history of the Weimar Republic." - Aaron Zelman, JPFO


    Note well that phrase: "and the will to use it," for the simply-stated question, "What good can a handgun do against an army?", is in fact a complex one and must be answered at length and carefully. It is a military question. It is also a political question. But above all it is a moral question which strikes to the heart of what makes men free, and what makes them slaves. First, let's answer the military question.

    Most military questions have both a strategic and a tactical component. Let's consider the tactical.

    A friend of mine owns an instructive piece of history. It is a small, crude pistol, made out of sheet-metal stampings by the U.S. during World War II. While it fits in the palm of your hand and is a slowly-operated, single-shot arm, it's powerful .45 caliber projectile will kill a man with brutal efficiency. With a short, smooth-bore barrel it can reliably kill only at point blank ranges, so its use requires the will (brave or foolhardy) to get in close before firing. It is less a soldier's weapon than an assassin's tool. The U.S. manufactured them by the million during the war, not for our own forces but rather to be air-dropped behind German lines to resistance units in occupied Europe. Crude and slow (the fired case had to be knocked out of the breech by means of a little wooden dowel, a fresh round procured from the storage area in the grip and then manually reloaded and cocked) and so wildly inaccurate it couldn't hit the broad side of a French barn at 50 meters, to the Resistance man or woman who had no firearm it still looked pretty darn good.

    WWIILiberatorPistolcal45ACP.jpg


    WWII Liberator Pistol cal. 45ACP


    The theory and practice of it was this:

    First, you approach a German sentry with your little pistol hidden in your coat pocket and, with Academy-award sincerity, ask him for a light for your cigarette (or the time the train leaves for Paris, or if he wants to buy some non-army-issue food or a half- hour with your "sister"). When he smiles and casts a nervous glance down the street to see where his Sergeant is at, you blow his brains out with your first and only shot, then take his rifle and ammunition. Your next few minutes are occupied with "getting out of Dodge," for such critters generally go around in packs. After that (assuming you evade your late benefactor's friends) you keep the rifle and hand your little pistol to a fellow Resistance fighter so they can go get their own rifle.

    Or maybe you then use your rifle to get a submachine gun from the Sergeant when he comes running. Perhaps you get very lucky and pickup a light machine gun, two boxes of ammunition and a haversack of hand grenades. With two of the grenades and the expenditure of a half-a-box of ammunition at a hasty roadblock the next night, you and your friends get a truck full of arms and ammunition. (Some of the cargo is sticky with "Boche" blood, but you don't mind terribly.)

    Pretty soon you've got the best armed little maquis unit in your part of France, all from that cheap little pistol and the guts to use it. (One wonders if the current political elite's opposition to so-called "Saturday Night Specials" doesn't come from some adopted racial memory of previous failed tyrants. Even cheap little pistols are a threat to oppressive regimes.)


    They called the pistol the "Liberator." Not a bad name, all in all.

    Now let's consider the strategic aspect of the question, "What good can a handgun do against an army....?" We have seen that even a poor pistol can make a great deal of difference to the military career and postwar plans of one enemy soldier. That's tactical. But consider what a million pistols, or a hundred million pistols (which may approach the actual number of handguns in the U.S. today), can mean to the military planner who seeks to carry out operations against a populace so armed. Mention "Afghanistan" or "Chechnya" to a member of the current Russian military hierarchy and watch them shudder at the bloody memories. Then you begin to get the idea that modern munitions, air superiority and overwhelming, precision-guided violence still are not enough to make victory certain when the targets are not sitting Christmas- present fashion out in the middle of the desert.

    "A billion here, a billion there, sooner or later it adds up to real money." --Everett Dirksen

    Consider that there are at least as many firearms-- handguns, rifles and shotguns-- as there are citizens of the United States. Consider that last year there were more than 14 million Americans who bought licenses to hunt deer in the country. 14 million-- that's a number greater than the largest five professional armies in the world combined. Consider also that those deer hunters are not only armed, but they own items of military utility-- everything from camouflage clothing to infrared "game finders", Global Positioning System devices and night vision scopes.

    Consider also that quite a few of these hunters are military veterans. Just as moving around in the woods and stalking game are second nature, military operations are no mystery to them, especially those who were on the receiving end of guerrilla war in Southeast Asia. Indeed, such men, aging though they may be, may be more psychologically prepared for the exigencies of civil war (for this is what we are talking about) than their younger active-duty brother-soldiers whose only military experience involved neatly defined enemies and fronts in the Grand Campaign against Saddam. Not since 1861-1865 has the American military attempted to wage a war athwart its own logistical tail (nor indeed has it ever had to use modern conventional munitions on the Main Streets of its own hometowns and through its relatives' backyards, nor has it tested the obedience of soldiers who took a very different oath with orders to kill their "rebellious" neighbors, but that touches on the political aspect of the question).

    But forget the psychological and political for a moment, and consider just the numbers. To paraphrase the Senator, "A million pistols here, a million rifles there, pretty soon you're talking serious firepower." No one, repeat, no one, will conquer America, from within or without, until its citizenry are disarmed. We remain, as a British officer had reason to complain at the start of our Revolution, "a people numerous and armed."

    The Second Amendment is a political issue today only because of the military reality that underlies it. Politicians who fear the people seek to disarm them. People who fear their government's intentions refuse to be disarmed. The Founders understood this. So, too, does every tyrant who ever lived. Liberty-loving Americans forget it at their peril. Until they do, American gunowners in the aggregate represent a strategic military fact and an impediment to foreign tyranny. They also represent the greatest political challenge to home-grown would-be tyrants. If the people cannot be forcibly disarmed against their will, then they must be persuaded to give up their arms voluntarily. This is the siren song of "gun control," which is to say "government control of all guns," although few self-respecting gun-grabbers would be quite so bold as to phrase it so honestly.

    Joseph Stalin, when informed after World War II that the Pope disapproved of Russian troops occupying Trieste, turned to his advisors and asked, "The Pope? The Pope? How many divisions does he have?" Dictators are unmoved by moral suasion. Fortunately, our Founders saw the wisdom of backing the First Amendment up with the Second. The "divisions" of the army of American constitutional liberty get into their cars and drive to work in this country every day to jobs that are hardly military in nature. Most of them are unmindful of the service they provide. Their arms depots may be found in innumerable closets, gunracks and gunsafes.

    READ THE REST AT:

    http://transsylvaniaphoenix.blogspot.com/2008/07/what-good-can-handgun-do-against-army.html
     
  2. divemedic

    divemedic Member

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    There are an estimated 90 million gun owners in this country and the own at least 200 million firearms. If only 1 percent of gun owners take to the street and each of the resisters manage to kill 2 soldiers on average before being gunned down, that is 1.8 million dead invaders.

    Think that is unrealistic? The Vietnamese, Mogadishu, the Iraqi resistance, and the Warsaw ghetto all show what relatively poorly equipped and organized militia forces can do against modern conventional military forces.
     
  3. Rachen

    Rachen member

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    Kudos to Mike Vanderboegh!!!:D:D:D
     
  4. shevrock

    shevrock Member

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    wow, i like this article.
     
  5. Bowman140

    Bowman140 Member

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    Talk about hitting the nail on the head.
     
  6. Rachen

    Rachen member

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    Also, read "Unintended Consequences: Waco Rules vs. Romanian Rules"

    Also written by Mr. Vanderboegh.
     
  7. bnkrazy

    bnkrazy Member

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    Thanks for posting! A very nice read.
     
  8. funnybone

    funnybone Member

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    THANKS FOR YOUR COMMENTS!

    Should be required reading in every elementary school, high school and college.
     
  9. Sam Adams

    Sam Adams Member

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    This is an old article, but nonetheless very relevant. The more people who read it, the better.
     
  10. shdwfx

    shdwfx Member

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    It would be a lot harder to wage a successful insurgency in modern America than it is in Afghanistan or Iraq. For the most part, we're soft and enslaved to our automated lifestyle.

    The key missing element is command and control to mobilize those 14 million (or the fraction that would even be willing to mobilize).

    How many of us personally know even 10 people that would...

    1) have the equipment
    2) have the skills
    3) have the mentality and desire

    ...to form a resistance squad should our Constitution be suspended? I don't.

    Add in the possibility that common mediums of personal communication (internet, cell phones) are rendered inert or dangerous for coordination. How many know how to compensate for that scenario and effectively set up local command/control? I don't.

    Reality is that most of us are held hostage to our technologically advanced lifestyle. Most of us can't even maintain our cars and mobility without access to a dealership network that maintains a monopoly on computer-related repairs. Our social and family lives are geographically spread out and most lack friends and family within sufficient biking/walking distance to support each other.

    Our current dependent state is pretty sad.
     
  11. elrod

    elrod Member

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    Thank you for your post. Of course, this is not a far-fetched idea, given the candidates for POTUS and the current make up of our congress. But let me not be the one who drifts to politics. I suppose the main question posed in Mr Vanderboeghs' article is if the American gun owners could muster enough courage and organization to combat a nationwide Katrina-like effort to disarm us. Not out of the question.
     
  12. robert garner

    robert garner Member

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    Shadowfax "How many of us personally know even 10 people that would..."All you need to know is one.The leaders dont need to know who they are, for the followers will recognize him and fall in line. You will know him as you step into the fray
    Funnybone Thanks, folks need a reminder that armies arent made of corps battallions or squads, but of men.
    robert
     
  13. amprecon

    amprecon Member

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    If you think that's neat, just imagine the number of Americans that hunt with a scoped rifle. I would venture to say that at the very least there are 1 million active hunters in this country that hunt with a scoped rifle and most are very proficient with them.

    As the sniper is the most feared soldier on the battlefield it's hard to deny the possibilities.

    I remember reading a story about the Wehrmacht invading one of the Nordic countries during WWII and members of a rifle club stayed their advance for awhile.......if I could only recall that story more precisely.

    Have faith those that distrust their government, they're way over-rated, whomever becomes president, they're irrelevant to our existence and to the effects of our daily lives.
     
  14. gallo

    gallo Member

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    In order to avoid tyranny, a country must defend its liberties at all costs. Even when those liberties speak contrary to our own beliefs. The 1st amendment guarantees freedom of expression and religion. That applies to all expression, provided it is not conducive to criminal activity, and to to all religions, even those we may not like.

    The six amendment guarantees a due process. Again, this applies even to enemy combatants. For if we deny them this right, we stand to lose it ourselves. What's to stop the government from engaging in a witch hunt against those it deems enemies of the state?

    The 2nd amendment may hold tyrants at bay and may even serve America to defend itself one day. But to prevent our government form getting to that extreme, we must fight harder for all the other liberties guranteed by the bill of rights as it applies to all races and religions. If it gets to the point where our only hope is the 2nd ammendment, then the battle may be won but at a muh higher cost.
     
  15. .cheese.

    .cheese. Member

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    great. Now I have to shoot anybody who asks me for a light. :what:
     
  16. amprecon

    amprecon Member

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    Enemies of freedom deserve no due process, that "right" is only granted to American citizens not our enemies.
    If they want legal protection under the United States Constitution, legally become an American, otherwise, attack us and get killed.
    For them, a quick end is our best defense.

    Why the h*ll are people wanting to protect the enemy under the U.S. Constitution as if they're Americans? :confused:

    Shoot 'em already!!!!!
     
  17. A/C Guy

    A/C Guy Member

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    During WWII, 4 pistols in a Polish town held the Germany army at bay for 7 weeks.

    The Germans did know know how many people were armed; the 4 armed persons were very effective against a trained military machine.

    You really should have paid attention in history class ;)
     
  18. jakemccoy

    jakemccoy Member

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    The psychological and political problems of an army going against its own populace that is armed will likely prevent such tyranny from the outset. In other words, the mere idea of every other household regularly going to shoot sporting clays would prevent the army invasion, not because the army couldn't invade but rather because any result would be undesirable for all parties involved. Every household should own and be skilled with at least one firearm. Let's face it: Our forefathers got it right with the Second Amendment.

    EDIT: The term "army invasion" may not seem right with the issue at hand. However, a tax payers' army that invades its own tax payers is definitely an invader.
     
  19. rainbowbob

    rainbowbob Member

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    You mean you haven't been? I wondered who was letting all those unequipped smokers get past the perimeter.
     
  20. SoCalShooter

    SoCalShooter Member

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    That's for me to know and not you!
    You have to be a citizen for the amendment to apply to you, if your not a citizen then you have no rights.
     
  21. Kalashnikov

    Kalashnikov Member

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    The whole reason for resistance in the first place is because of disorganization. If we were organized and ready to fight, we would not need to fear too much. Walk softly and carry a big stick after all.
     
  22. F4GIB

    F4GIB Member

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    Rachen posted today:
    WHERE does one find this? Please cite the URL.
     
  23. Rachen

    Rachen member

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    http://waronguns.blogspot.com/2007/05/guest-editorial-resistance-is-futile.html

    It is an EXCELLENT article. Anyone who is a patriot must read this. Like what Charlton Heston said, this nation is quickly becoming a nation of cowards who refuse to speak up for themselves out of fear.

    It is time these articles are broadcasted for EVERYONE to read. Parents should make sure their child reads patriotic and positive literature like this once they start to read. It is the only way AMERICA becomes AMERICAN again!
     
  24. TexasSkyhawk

    TexasSkyhawk Internet SEAL

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    Our counterparts in the U.S. Army used to teach insurgents exactly how to do what the original posts asks in the title. There is a method, simplistic as it may be, and several have already touched upon the fringes of it.

    As it was taught to us, in its most basic form, you use a small gun to acquire a bigger gun. You use the bigger gun to acquire yet an even larger, more powerful gun, of which you use to acquire many more guns of all sizes so that your insurgents may repeat the process exponentially.

    It all comes down to #3 above, "have the mentality and desire"

    Many of us right here would be surprised at those who do, and those who don't. My army friends who were regular infantry told us tales how they saw it time and time again. The big talkers, but who'd seen no action, had to be shoved out of the choppers at the LZ. The quiet ones, who looked scared poop-less, still got out reluctantly, but trusted in their training and combat buddy and forged ahead.

    Fortunately, in the harder units (I don't like the term "elite"--ANYONE who voluntarily dons this nation's uniform is elite in my world), we were able to weed out the BS-ers through qualifying schools. Occasionally we would see hesitance now and then with new members, but it was rare and the hesitation only lasted mere seconds, if that. Too much pride, too much focus, too much training--it all takes over during the apex of the critical moment.

    Speaking just for me, a middle-aged gent comfortable with his lot in life, I automatically discount the phenomenon known as "the armchair commando" as being of any value to me and those like me in a bad, all-out situation.

    The only use they will provide will be the abundance of fancy weapons and ammo I'll immediately take from them after they either screw up or give you a hundred different reasons why this suddenly "isn't their fight."

    In uniform, we call the situation described in the original post "firing on the flag." It is the most distasteful act imaginable to the professional warrior and those who've defended honor and freedom by bearing arms against our enemies.

    The mere thought of having to fire on my own fellow citizens makes me nauseous. The unimaginable thought of having to purposefully take a soldier or sailor or airman or Marine's life who wears the same uniform I once wore is the second worst kind of Hell I can conjure up in even the darkest, most remote corners of my mind.

    Those who secretly fantasize about it or contemplate it have never been there, and their opinions on the matter mean absolutely jack---- to me.

    Jeff
     
  25. makarovnik

    makarovnik Member

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    You'd be surprised what you can do if you're tricky, sneaky and well prepared. First guy you sneak up on and shoot (or blow up, that seems to work well) you take all his goodies. Ever see 'Falling Down? I love it. First he started out with a stick or a hammer or something. Then he took a knife away from a gangsta, then he obtained a bag o' guns. Kill, take and work your way up to grenades, rocket launchers then heavy artillery. The sky's the limit.
     
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