Scout Sniper (MOS 0317, formerly 8541) is a specialist in the United States Marine Corps whose mission is to deny the enemy freedom of movement by killing enemy leaders, crew-served weapons operators, radiomen, observers, messengers, and other key personnel with single, well-aimed shots. In addition, scout snipers also provide close reconnaissance and surveillance to the infantry battalion. Scout Snipers attached to Marine infantry battalions fall under the Surveillance and Target Acquisition units, usually a reduced platoon with the headquarters company. Marine Corps Scout Snipers are widely considered one of the elite forces of the US military and all branches of service send their best to be trained at one of the four school house locations.
As defined by the Marine Corps Scout Sniper Basic Course, a Scout Sniper is a Marine highly skilled in fields craft and marksmanship who delivers long range precision fire on selected targets from concealed positions in support of combat operations. -- Wikipedia.
NOTE: Some folks, in and out of government, will take what I write below as an invitation to assassination of public figures. Nothing could be further from the truth. I am on record as denouncing the idea of assassinating President Obama, going so far during the campaign as to call on good folks to attend his rallies and watch for threats to him. Assassination, even of a President no matter how much you dislike or fear his administration's policies, is a loser's tool. Indeed, there is much more to be gained by the enemies of the Founders' Republic in the assassination of President Obama than by anyone else. If it happens one must ask the old criminal investigator's question: Cui bono? Who benefits?
(One wonders if this isn't -- subconsciously at least -- what's behind the incessant comparisions of Obama to Lincoln and Julius Ceasar.)
Rather, the political and military dynamics I try to explain below are in the context of a hypothetical civil war initiated by a tyrannical administration. In that scenario, the killing of senior executives of the murderous regime would not be murder, but, from one perspective simple justice, and from another legitimate targets permissible under the laws of war. (See Bill Clinton and Serbia, 1999).
As with everything I write, I'm trying avoid a civil war here, not start one. -- MBV
Trying to finish Absolved, real life events intrude as they must. The flurry of praxis posts was done for a reason -- responding to a need reflected in email requests and face-to-face conversations with folks new to the armed citizen concept. The response to the FM 21-15 offering was amazing, and I spent more than I little time sending those pdfs out. It was worth it. Glad to see all those budding militia supply officers out there. Logistics most often decides conflicts and thus we should pay great attention to ours.
Will, of course, is also indispensable. But as the Japanese Empire could tell you if it were still around, "Yamato damashi" alone can only take you so far. Training, tactics, strategy, intelligence, all are also critical to success.
But what we would all prefer is not to have to fight at all. Since we prefer to live in peace AND liberty, it is necessary to figure out what motivates our enemy -- the domestic enemies of the Founder's republic and the Constitution. What do they want? Well, that's pretty obvious. They want to be able to tell the rest of us what to do without interference. To paraphrase the sign my ex-wife used to have on the wall, it is their way or the highway.
That is what they want, surely. But that is a mere appetite. That is what the old military acronym IOE -- Intentions of the Enemy -- is all about. But if we are talking about preventing war, then we must create a credible deterrent -- something that strikes at the heart of their ambition and causes it to die aborning.
Thus, in the end, credible deterrence is less about figuring out what they want or how they intend to go about getting it, but rather depends upon the answer to this question:
What is it that they most value?
Credibly threaten what they most value -- as in, make them believe that they will lose it if they attempt to attack you -- and they will not do that thing. They will not attack you, lest they lose it.
So, what do they value? Power, certainly. Principle? Certainly not. Everything is compromisable toward the satisfaction of appetite. Do they fear God? Certainly not. These are very temporal creatures. They live in the here and now and glory in the satisfaction of their senses.
Thus they have no understanding of the concept, "Live free or die." Such a thing as dying for a principle is incomprehensible. Which is why they do not understand how dangerous is their present position.
They value power then, for power's sake, but here is the key. They cannot wield power if they are dead. Because they believe in nothing higher than their own ambition (despite whatever convincing noises they make for the collectivist herd about "for the children" or the "perfectability of socialist man" or the "triumph of the 'volk'") it is their lives and their lives alone that they value.
This is what they understand: YOU CANNOT EXERCISE POWER IF YOU ARE DEAD.
And THAT is what they fear. The ending of their existence. That, and that alone.
Remember, we are talking about the war initiators here. The war makers. Not the useful tools who carry out the policy but the policymakers themselves, and the people who manipulate them.
Boiled down, this is part of what the Founders had in mind with the Second Amendment. Give the people the means to resist tyranny, and then it is the tyrants who die in the end.
Or, as I tried to distill it down for the impatient hoplophobe who demanded that I tell him my position in as few words as possible: "If you try to take our firearms we will kill you."
Substitute the words "liberty and property" for "firearms." THIS is what we must make our enemies believe. If we regain the credible deterrence that the armed citizenry once had in this country, no would-be tyrant will dare apply for the position. He will be unable to attract lieutenants if they believe such an action is suicidal.
This is what the Founders intended. They tried to construct a system of checks and balances, a deliberately inefficient system of government, to avoid the tyranny of the King or of the mob. But it was a system designed for a moral people, a God-fearing people, and though it lasted a long time, the fact is that we are, in aggregate, no longer moral or God-fearing. Thus, we are left with the armed citizenry as the arbiters of their own liberty.
If you try to take our liberty and property we will kill you.
That sentiment strikes at the heart of what they value. Everything else is window dressing.
If we can convince the enemies of the Founders' Republic that this will happen as surely as two plus two equals four, there will be no next American civil war. But the burden is on us to present the mathematics and make them credible.
Thus, as an exercise in the mathematics of liberty, I re-post a piece from back in January. Cheyenne 0317/8541 is my nominee for next year's Nobel Prize in Mathematics. If we can somehow get the Constitution's enemies to understand this mathematic principle, we will all live long, prosperous and free lives without conflict.
But, given the collective history of this sorry planet, that's not the way to bet.
Saturday, January 24, 2009
One Hundred Heads
You have no idea how humbling the response as been to Absolved and this website. These are serious issues. Issues that, in the fullness of time, could get people killed. Yet what I write apparently resonates with people because God has given me a talent for expressing what they have long believed.
All of my work has been motivated by a desire to avoid conflict over these principles we hold so dear. If I bluntly warn liberal politicians, media types and academics of the folly of their proposals, it is because I don't want my children and grandchildren to have to suffer the ghastly experience of civil war.
It has always been my belief that if people understood where this is heading, there was a least a chance of avoiding it. As we proceed into the Era of Obama, I am afraid that is becoming more and more a faint hope.
As some of you know from bitter personal experience, taking a stand does not come without cost. There are dangers, even now, to having political opinions. Just ask David Olofson. From time to time, people express concern that I may fall victim to ATF retribution or FBI miscalculation. There is, in fact, little I can do about that, for that move is up to them. Like Luther, here I stand, I cannot do otherwise. There are no free lunches. It is what comes of being a free man. Or as my Grandpa Vanderboegh used to say in an imitation of a cartoon character, "You pays your money and you takes your chances."
But I was reminded this week that no man is an island, entire of itself. On my trip to the post office box, I was rewarded, in addition to statements from Social Security and the power bill, a single anonymous envelope. It was postmarked from somewhere in Oklahoma. It said this in handwritten block letters, spelling and punctuation as written:
I have read you on the internet and believe in what your doing. One day the ATF will come to count coup on you & take your head. I promise to take One hundred heads for yours.
There is a small, delicate ink drawing on the bottom of the sheet, showing what appears to be a coup stick crossed with a tomahawk and over-arched with what I'd guess are eagle feathers. 0317/8541, for the uninitiated, are the current and former MOS numbers for a Marine Scout/Sniper.
One hundred heads. I sat in the car, reading and rereading this piece of paper, touched by its simple sincerity. I have no doubt the man means what he says. I also have no doubt that a Marine scout/sniper has the skills to take a hundred heads if, God forbid, this should come to guns.
I shared this with a friend yesterday, and he had only this comment: "A hundred heads properly targeted could finish this thing." Indeed.
On the assumption that Cheyenne is reading this, I would like to tell him this:
I do not ask you to take those hundred heads, sir, but I appreciate the commitment to our common cause that such a promise implies. I do not know what the future may bring, but if it should be grim I merely ask that you get the right hundred heads.
In liberty, and with gratitude,