Thursday, May 1, 2014

"There is no teacher but the enemy." The Bundy Ranch Federally-Sponsored Cluster Coitus: Oath Keepers makes their case. My experiences and thoughts.

"There is no teacher but the enemy. No one but the enemy will ever tell you what the enemy is going to do. No one but the enemy will ever teach you how to destroy and conquer. Only the enemy shows you where you are weak. Only the enemy tells you when he is strong. And the rules of the game are what you can do to him and what you can stop him from doing to you." -- Mazer Rackham to Ender Wiggin in Ender's Game.
Oath Keepers makes their case of their actions and reactions at the Bundy Ranch in this video. It is necessarily long, reflecting as it does the testimony of five participants and a discussion of how they came to the decisions that they did. That said, it is worth watching all the way through. Please do that now and then return for my comments.
I have spoken with several independent militia commanders who spent time at the Bundy Siege, a couple of Three Percenters who were there from day one, and other Threepers and Oath Keepers who came later (none of whom are in the video). In addition, of course, I have my own experiences with -- and up-close observations of -- the personalities involved. These form the basis of my analysis below.
First, it is necessary to describe how I came to be there and what my relationship with Oath Keepers was and is. As readers know, the way that I came to be at the Bundy Ranch to give a speech on 19 April was strictly coincidental. The Buckeyes, you may recall, decided to dispense with my services without telling me and I was ejected from their meeting. When Stewart Rhodes found out I was available, he asked if I would be willing to come out and speak at the Bundy Ranch. I do not ask for anything for my speeches themselves, merely content with being provided with transportation to and from and provisions for a hotel room or a place to crash in a private home so that I can get a shower, dress the wound on my back in a semi-sterile environment and sleep in a comfortable chair (I have difficulty sleeping laying down since the rerouting of my digestive system). That's it. Generally I do not even ask for a rental car, content to depend upon catching rides with members of the host organization. Sometimes folks pick up the tab for my meals, sometimes not. Stewart agreed to these terms and paid for the economy tickets necessary to fly out to Las Vegas where he and Steve Homan picked me up at the airport for the ride out to the Bundy Ranch.
Further, it is important to remember that I am not a member of Oath Keepers, although I have always believed that their work reminding folks of the ramifications of the oath they took to be among the most important of tasks. There are Three Percenters who belong to Oath Keepers and Oath Keepers who are Three Percenters. That is a given. But I decided from the first that it was inappropriate of me to join the organization, having staked out a different area of operations as it were in the fight to defend the Founders' Republic.
It is also important to recall that Stewart Rhodes, the Oath Keepers board and I have not always seen eye to eye on some things. You may recall that OK at first committed to support, and then pulled out of, the armed march in Northern Virginia back in 2010. At the time there were those who wanted me to -- no, URGED me to -- loudly denounce Oath Keepers in general and Stewart Rhodes in particular for that decision. I did not not do so. I have long had a policy, dating from my work with the constitutional militia in the 90s, that I do not shoot my own side's wounded. I'm glad I had that policy, for Stewart Rhodes has come a long way since those days as a leader and the Oath Keepers are a valuable force in the fight for liberty. Those who accused Stewart then of being a coward did not see him later risk arrest last year at the hands of the Lexington, MA, police force when he refused their order to stay off the green and told them they would have to arrest him to stop him from administering the oath ceremony there. The Lexington PD, gritted their teeth and blinked, allowing the ceremony to go forward. That was entirely Stewart's doing. No, in my experience, Stewart Rhodes is no coward.
That said, Stewart stiffed me that first night at Bundy's, since we drove directly to the camp so that he could relieve some of his guys on outpost duty, despite his own lack of sleep. I got what rest I could in the car. Where Steve Homan -- the Vietnam vet in the OK video with the heart condition and an NVA bullet still lodged in his abdomen -- slept I have no idea, undoubtedly on the ground where he had no business being. Okay, I thought, improvise, adapt and overcome, although I was convinced then and remain convinced throughout my experiences there that neither Stewart, nor Steve Homan, nor Jerry, nor any of Jerry's command structure was getting enough sleep in order to make the best decisions. Tired commanders screw up. They should learn to delegate the routine stuff to subordinates even though it seems selfish, for it is a false economy to spare your troops some lost hours of their own sleep only to put them in harm's way because you lack sleep yourself. Indeed, I spent much of my time with those men urging them to get more sleep. As near as I could determine, they ignored me, which undoubtedly played a part -- a big part -- in what happened subsequently.
Given that US warfighters suffer from chronic sleep deprivation, they will almost certainly experience deleterious effects on performance. The most egregious example of the consequences of chronic and acute sleep debt is when combat troops fall asleep when they need to be vigilant. While less obvious, other effects of chronic and acute sleep debt such as microsleeps, lapses in attention, memory and judgment, alterations in mood, and degraded decision-making also have far-reaching consequences for combat effectiveness. Military leaders would never send troops into harm’s way without the safety afforded them by armor and other personal protective equipment; yet sending troops on missions when they are sleep deprived is equally as dangerous to themselves and to others in their organization. -- The Role of Sleep in the Military: Implications for Training and Operational Effectiveness by Nita Lewis Miller, et. al., Pg. 42.
It is important to remember that while OK did retain hotel rooms at a cheap casino -- the Virgin River -- in nearby Mesquite (including one room I shared with Steve Homan), they used the rooms mostly for giving their own members on the line a place to crash, refit and then go back into security role, not for the leadership to enjoy comfort while the membership slept in the dirt. This BS about Stewart and Co, "staying at the casino and gambling away 20K of the member's money," was to my experience a flat lie. In my time there, Stewart and the OKs were too damn busy to play the slots and I never observed any of them in the gambling area. As for me, my Grandpa Nace taught me that "gambling was a tax on the stupid," and I have never been one to waste my fragile and thin resources on a sure bet to nowhere. It would have irked me greatly if I had observed such conduct on the part of Oath Keepers. I did not. The few times I had meals with Oath Keepers at the Casino, they ate modestly and mostly paid for their own. I know I did, most often having breakfast at McDonald's across the street (I also kicked in $20.00 on a big bag of Egg McMuffins for the troops, which I dropped off to Jerry).
For those having trouble visualizing the layout, there were three layers of security at the Bundy Ranch and one layer of insecurity. The first, and outermost, was the "scouts out" operation run by the Oath Keepers that kept track of movement on the roads and back trails leading up to the Bundy property. The second was the main camp posted above the side road leading to the Bundy Ranch, and the shed on the road below that served as the chow hall. Here, eventually, Jerry commanded a mixed and constantly changing force of Oath Keepers, Three Percenters, and the best of the militia formations. The last was the Bundy Ranch security detail itself, hired by the Bundys and providing, at least in the beginning, the liason between the other formations and the Bundys.
Between the "scouts out" of the Oath Keepers and the camp containing Jerry's CP was the "lower camp" (actually the first militia presence that the press and public saw) of what was dubbed "The Fruits and Nuts Brigade." These were people who were not trusted by the other more competent formations, or did not themselves trust the other formations. These people were, in the main, excitable, prickly and resentful -- and ever ready to talk to the press. There was literally nothing the other formations could do about, or with, them, so they pretty much did a great job of representing the worst face of the Bundy defense operation and the militia to the press. They were often the source of unfounded rumors and dangerous weapon handling. One night they almost started the next American civil war by getting spooked by the arrival of six Las Vegas metro cars traveling in fast convoy down the public road that led to the Bundys. Some of them arranged themselves in a hasty ambush and were only persuaded not to fire first by the intervention of cooler heads who were staying down there. Like I said, "Fruits and Nuts" -- and a constant source of trouble.
Which highlights a principal cause of the chaos and confusion throughout the events that I witnessed. This was a come-as-you-are party, with volunteers flooding in from all over the country. I am quite sure that the Bundys were both gratified by the turnout and frightened by the character of some of those who did show up. This probably caused the arrangement that developed, with separate formations, different commanders with different styles of command (or no style of, or ability to, command), who had difficulty communicating with each other and with no shared SOP or rules of engagement other than to "protect the Bundys" -- an admirable if nebulous and constantly shifting target subject to the whims and agendas of individual "commanders," some of whom commanded nothing but themselves and their own egos. That the Oath Keepers donated $12.5K to the Bundys to help them defray expenses says much about the generosity of Stewart and his people. That the Bundys later embraced a person that anyone with any experience could tell was a sociopath and provocateur is to me inexplicable. (I was told that Ryan is attending LDS meetings now with the Bundys. Whether that bit of chameleon trickery plays into their decisions is anybody's guess.)
From the first there was thievery in "Jerry's camp." A $900 Ipad belonging to a media guy hired by the Oath Keepers came up missing. One militia leader I talked to said that they lost nothing because they always maintained a constant guard over their stuff. Heck, somebody even stole my official Knob Creek coffee cup, so I am not surprised that when faced with the temptation of sophisticated electronics that Oath Keepers loaned to "Jerry's Kids" that some came up missing.
At this date, Jerry (and especially his conduct since the failed coup attempt by Ryan Payne --if that is his real name), remains a puzzle to me. An impressive former Marine NCO, he had a real command presence, the absolute loyalty of those who came into contact with him and, like most NCOs, an absolute inability to delegate responsibility and tasks. I include Stewart Rhodes in that critique as well. Both men took on too much themselves, got little to no sleep and made bad decisions as a result.
Example: One afternoon a couple showed up at the camp: a young tattooed white male wearing a holstered pistol and his girlfriend toting a shotgun. In the entrance interviews, which Jerry insisted upon mostly conducting himself, it developed that the guy was an admitted felon, but he didn't believe that it was constitutional to deny him his firearm rights. This came with a long, sad story about how they had quit their jobs to volunteer for the Bundys and do their part. Both Jerry and Stewart were inclined to accept their help until I called them over and explained the ramifications of accepting a self-admitted, armed felon into camp. They were impressed by the man's "honesty and sincerity," in admitting up-front that he was a felon. I said, among other things, that of course he admitted it. If he hadn't, then they would have plausible deniability when later confronted about it. By stating it up front, it was actually worse for them because they could not later deny having known that fact.* "How do you think that is going to sound in the grand jury?" I asked them. They changed their minds and sent the couple on their way with gas money. I am convinced that neither man would have needed any assistance from me to take that decision had they been in their right minds. That is, if they had been even semi-rested and on the bounce, which commanders must be to the best of their ability if they are to carry out their solemn duty to do their best to take care of their people and execute the mission.
*NOTE: Throughout my stay at Bunkerville I gave a lot of advice to men and women for whom this was their first rodeo. Among the most often repeated (second, I think only behind my constant harping to get more sleep) was the old Marine intelligence officer's dictum when dealing with sources -- "Why is this SOB telling me this, and why is he telling me this NOW?"
As an aside, weapons handling in Jerry's camp was terrible and I observed numerous unsafe practices about muzzle discipline with loaded rifles. It was a wonder that no one was killed or injured by a negligent discharge during my stay. As they say, if I may paraphrase, God takes care of drunks, little children and the American militia. I counseled some of these safety scofflaws personally and privately. Eventually I gave it up as wasted effort and just tried to stay out of the line of potential fire. The sight of a newbie clerk sitting at the check-in table in the CP wearing a loaded FAL on a sling in front of his body muzzle-up while he filled out new arrival cards was as comical as it was appalling. That this was apparently with the tacit approval of Jerry, whose life was also endangered thereby, can only be excused by extreme sleep deprivation, which as I have mentioned is itself a command failure.
But this business of allying with the same guy -- a likely federal provocateur -- who tried to displace you at your job, and lying by omission and commission about Oath Keepers and the whole drone strike business at a joint presser with the same moke who stuck several knives in your back is inexplicable to me. One of the ploys of a sociopath or a provocateur is to shrink your perceived universe and get you reacting to him and his artificial constructs without reference to outside reality. At such moments you have to be able to have the presence of mind to step back out of the box that he has created for you so you can see the whole picture. It is evident to me that Ryan Payne (or whatever his real name is) is an expert at that trick. On my last day, the moke tried provoking me and I finally blew him off with the comment, "Well, like Grandpa Vanderboegh said, 'Don't try to to teach your Grandma how to suck eggs." He thought I was joking and broke off the engagement. I wasn't joking. This ain't my first rodeo and I ran into pukes like him all the time in the 90s. I am convinced that if there had been more Bob Wrights at the event and fewer wide-eyed newbies a lot of this debacle would not have happened.
Unfortunately Bob wasn't able to get away from some serious work commitments to be there. A Bob Wright anecdote to illustrate my point: In 2005 when Bob became what amounted to operations officer for the Minutemen in one of their first border vigils, he discovered that in the bible college they were using as a dorm for volunteers that some idiots had taken the mattresses from the beds and blocked the windows with them "because the Feds are going to come in the night and throw grenades in the windows." What Bob is reported to have said is not for delicate ears and the Minutemen volunteer roster was short a half-dozen idiots come the next dawn, but Bob did not, does not, EVER suffer fools gladly. We needed some hard heads and harder hearts like his at Bundy's Ranch. Nothing illustrates this more than the reaction to the drone strike.
Now, after talking to all the major participants in the Oath Keeper chain of decision and command regarding that remarkable and skillfully delivered piece of federal disinformation as well as some outside witnesses who were there when this came down, I am inclined to believe the Oath Keeper version of events as presented in the above video. Their failure was not one of cowardice as has been alleged. Stewart was sincerely motivated, I believe, by a concern for his troops, the Bundys and the innocents in the camps. The failure was one of lack of hard-headed analysis and an equal lack of hard-hearted decision taking.
When I was told that Oath Keepers was actually reacting to such an obvious piece of federal disinformation, I exploded on the phone. The guy I was talking to said that yes, they had initially thought that it was disinformation but they had it confirmed from multiple sources (as Stewart explained in the video), one of whom "was in the Governor's office" who had given them several smaller tips earlier that had all proven to be true. Of course it came from from the Governor's office, I blew up, for only if it came from an absolutely impeccable source would you believe it. The use of a drone strike on American soil would cause such an outcry that even Obama would be impeached within a week. Did they think that such calculating bastards were really that stupid? Besides, let us assume for the purposes of argument that the information was true. If the enemy is willing to make such a fatal mistake, it is our duty not to get in the way of it. Sure, they kill the folks on the scene, I argued, but their entire regime would be swept away. Isn't that our larger purpose? Indeed, I pointed out then and in subsequent conversations with others, our JOB is to fight and if need be to die interposing ourselves between the tyrants and the people. If someone is doing this and is unwilling to make that trade he should find another avocation. With the video explanation, I am mindful that Stewart was motivated by the highest concern for innocents and did not advocate the precipitate pullout as has been claimed by his federal enemies (Ryan Payne) and his erstwhile friends (Jerry). But the public reaction to inform the media (which we now know Jerry agreed to) was stupid. The smart thing to do was to make the adjustments that Stewart and Jerry did initially and then to sit down in the CP, drink coffee, "smoke 'em if you got 'em" and await events. If it was disinformation we win points for being smarter than the Feds think we are and if it wasn't disinformation we REALLY win.
The subsequent chaos and lack of discipline, including the wanton and unprovoked assault on a Vietnam Vet with a heart condition, is on Jerry's shoulders. That little out-of-control thug of his damn near killed a good man, a hero in my eyes, who because of his health had no business being there yet was because he saw it as his simple duty. I took the measure of the man named Steve Homan during my stay there and I say without fear of contradiction that there is no finer American. Lord knows how much the stress of the whole experience took off his life.
My final conclusion is that if Oath Keepers is guilty of anything it is that they were too trusting, too helpful and too eager to make peace with people who obviously had their own agendas, some simple thievery and others in service to their federal masters.
The key is, will they survive and learn from the experience. In conversations with Stewart and other board members, I have learned that they will be after-actioning this cruel lesson taught by the enemy -- and by people they thought were their friends. They will be developing rules of engagement and an SOP for future Bundy Ranches, and there WILL be future Bundy Ranches.
Lesson One: Get some things in writing up front from the folks you intend to protect, establishing a clear-cut chain of command and authority for the various spheres of action. Don't charge in without some vital issues clearly understood by all parties.
Another lesson: maintain control of your supplies. People donated good money to put them in your hands and you have a fiduciary duty to them to spend them wisely and to prevent their theft by people with other agendas.
Another lesson: Have a system of working with and integrating individuals and small units into larger ones, of vetting out the fruits and nuts and provocateurs and sending them on their way.
Another lesson: The Feds won back all the ground they lost by their direct attack on the Bundys with an indirect campaign of subversion and disinformation. If they destroy the Oath Keepers along with the Bundys' defensive arrangements it will be a huge win-win for them. They probably won't make the first mistake again, except with truly low-hanging fruit. They WILL repeat the other successful strategy. We need to be wise when dealing with disinformation and just as determined in our ability to physically interpose ourselves between the iron fist of tyrannical government and their intended victims, even if that means our lives.
There are many other lessons. The enemy has taught them to us at a great price at the Bundy Siege. The only question is can we be smart enough, self-critical enough, honest enough, to grasp them and to refuse to make such mistakes in the future. This is a long war, an eternal war really. The domestic enemies of the Constitution and the Founders' Republic will be there until we defeat them -- or we are ourselves defeated by our own failures to learn the lessons that they teach us.


Anonymous said...

Who is the Jerry to whom you make many references?

CB said...

May you live long on the earth my friend.

Dakota said...

What we have to do is ask ourselves who is going to win the end game at the Bundy Ranch. Can the patriot movement continue to tie up very meager resources indefinitely? It really is nothing more than a waiting game as I see it. On the one hand they can swoop down with trained superior forces and either kill many and send the survivors off to Federal prison for a very long time. Of course there would be casualties on their side too, all the better for Harry Reid & Co. Or they can wait until we do eventually have to leave and then serve papers either for a battle in open court or arrest. I don’t think they would really want a dynamic entry after all that has happened. I been wrong before but really why not let it go to court. Actually the perfect citizens militia exists right there that had the initial confrontation with BLM.

I think this is a State matter not a Federal matter anyway. This bullshit that the Feds own huge tracts of land and do whatever they want with it is going to have to come to an end. It is a States Rights issue and needs to be settled. We have many battles ahead and a A D or some other stunt with a hasty ambush on a load of innocents would devastate “us”. Of course a clear statement of warning to would be Federal officers might be in order and a small well equipped team rotating out with high tech photo equipment. In the case of a raid it would be documented and hopefully film would not be missing like it was at Waco.

I will again repeat myself for a call for a National voice of all patriot groups. This is a prime example of had we developed and deployed such a organization we would not be having a dick measuring free-for all in Nevada. I do not know if Ryan is or isn’t but I do know he stepped forward and took advantage of a situation, and then exploited it for maximum effect. If this is the type of hard charger we can expect from the eventual power struggle when all us old farts are gone, we have trouble ahead.

Clear goals and objectives and S O P for incidents must be well thought out and defined with R O E clear for all. Step outside the line and you go home ….. period!!! The damage that has been done is incalculable for all of us. Stewart Rhodes in my opinion, probably has the right heart, but as a leader he has shown himself actually proved himself to be a piss poor leader. There are no do overs and I agree that it was and is the objective of the Feds to destroy O K. Therefore Stewart needs to call a meeting with wise people like yourself, Bob Wright and some others like Sheriff Mack etc. and lay down the ground work for a National Forum of some type to speak with a clear voice, an authorative voice that can rise to these types of occasions with organizations that have good leadership also and leave the dipshits on the sidewalk.

Our futures, our childrens futures, and the future of our beloved Republic depend on decisions made from the mistakes that have been made. If we fail, we can only blame ourselves cause we were too busy playing silly ass games to do what needs doing in a timely and decisive manner.

Unknown said...

Thanks for the read.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like a case of too many chiefs and not enough Indians. The Feds will have a good laugh over the video and continue to wait.

Bundy will be jailed for contempt of court eventually. I would be surprised if more of his "trespass" cattle don't end up found dead from poison or bullet holes out on public lands. In the end, they will financially bankrupt the Bundy and confiscate their ranch. It may take a few more years, but they will play the long game now.

Anonymous said...

The Jerry he refers to is Jerry Delemus. Jerry drove from New Hampshire with his son and four other folks to help protect and defend the Bundy family. Jerry is a former USMC NCO and is the acting commander of the militia force that has assembled at the Bundy Ranch.

To Mike, thanks for taking the time to put all of this together. I watched the video denouncing OKs. The emotion and the voting all seemed very out of place.

The discrediting of OK is not only happening at Bunkerville. I see it on other III web sites. One must learn to be very discriminating when watching or reading info on these subjects.

Finally, I think Stewart Rhodes is a far more credible source of information than a group of hotheads standing in a circle, beating their chests out in the desert.

Skip W said...

"Jerry" is Jerry *******, a former Marine NCO and "commander" of the outside ring of security.

At one point in the account, names were accidentally intermixed: "Jerry Homan" is actually "Steve" Homan, wounded Vietnam veteran.

I hope that clears the fog a bit. As Mike is well aware, I'm no certain fan of either the Oath Keepers organization or their Board of Directors. I've had a short, turbulent history with the Oath Keepers, resulting in my voluntary resignation from my position as a State coordinator.

Now, having said that, I fully believe in Stewart Rhodes vision. In my never to be humble opinion, he is a best a visionary and figurehead, at worst a dupe used sorely by members of his BoD. Recent comments from BoD members made to others investigating this situation are quick to attack the reporter and proclaim their own (the BoD member's) greatness, while negligently skirting facts or offering an intelligent rebuttal. Unprofessional at best, misleading at worse. Certainly not helping.

Watching the initial video, it quickly became clear to me that Ryan Payne (or 'Paine') used impassioned and inflammatory language to manipulate those in his small crowd of attendees. I was somewhat disheartened to see Jerry included in that mob as my first impression of him (just a short introduction and handshake) was very favorable. Having been in a few like situations myself, I've become a bit sensitive (perhaps even overly so) to the dynamics in play.

The underlying factor is simply a lack of trust. The Bundy family has been suddenly thrust upon a world-wide stage, in open confrontation against one of the most powerful men in the world. Thousands have rallied to their side ... but who can they trust? I will wager that until now, Cliven had absolutely NO contact with anyone in the Militia movement. The family desperately needs the protection offered by the Militias, but who can they trust to have their best interests at heart. As evidenced, very few of those responding are as "professional" as the Arizona Praetorian Guard (something which, in my opinion, sorely needs to be addressed by the collective State Commanders, in additon to inter/intra-state and national SOPs, etc.).

That lack of trust, causing the Bundy family to latch on to an individual they feel is trustworthy, is the root of the problem. I don't know whether Ryan Payne is a provocateur (as is named all those who tend to disagree with us), someone with an agenda, or just another soul who's letting a semblanceof 'power' go to his head ... but that's purely up to the Bundys to decide.

The Oath Keepers leadership, on the other hand, are just plain dazed, confused ... and quite frankly stupid. They allowed themselves to be manipulated, and while considered to be the 'premier' PSYOPS specialists in the 'liberty' movement (as espoused by a member of the BoD recently), were played quite effectively by a rank amateur. They are organizationally confused as to what they are, as well as to what they want (or need) to be. And they've paid the price for that confusion in this battle.

There are times in battle where the commander must understand and accept that losses are necessary in order to achieve an objective. Again in my never to be humble opinion (and with 20/20 hindsight), Oath Keepers did well to vet the rumor, but they should have responded differently. If the rumor was indeed a deliberate act of PSYOP disinformation, what message would have been sent if the intended targets had just dug in, stacked their mags around their position and cast a collective single digit to the sky in defiance?

Lack of communication (or an unwillingness to communicate), sparse cohesiveness at best, and a spotty understanding of the overall mission ... hard lessons learned, but hopefully they will be learned and not repeated ... the next time.

Pericles said...

Excellent work in "self examination" which we must be our most severe critics in order to win the next round.

The "winner" too often fails to learn from events, and is thus set up for failure in the next encounter.

Anonymous said...

The "oathkeepers" are a LEO infiltration and disinformation unit that works tirelessly to undermine the militia. You are AT BEST a self promoting and self important twit, that showed up on the Bundy ranch after all danger was passed to make yourself seem to be far more important to the cause of liberty, than you are or ever were. Your repeated effort to support the enemy and to infiltrate militia groups while sowing ill will and "bad blood" tells me you are the same communist now that you were when you undermined the Alabama militias in the 90's. You talk a good line of bullshit but your actions tell us all we ever need know of you.

Anonymous said...

My wife and I are not combat veterans.
We spent the better part of two weeks there. When we first came there there was NO security. No militia, no Oath Keepers.
We were there to volunteer to help however we could. A couple of nights, right after the standoff, our presence was mostly to be there as a possible deterrent. My wife is running for office and we had two other elected officials who volunteered to stay at the ranch so that if there was an attack, and people were killed, at least it would be more than a footnote in history.
Once we decided that an attack was unlikely we concentrated our efforts on uncovering the paper trail through the courts.
Having been there early on I may be able to offer some insight.
The first on the scene was the private security. I had my doubts about them. But they proved to be highly professional. They all shared one common resolution, that they would die there fighting if it came to that. For days and nights we didn't see or speak to a single volunteer who gave the indication that they were willing to fire unless they were fired upon.
I was impressed at their conviction and the absence the Rambo attitude that I had expected.
If the convoy incident you are referring to was on the night of the blood moon, I may be able to offer a little more accurate insight.
At one point a bunch of trucks came quickly into the driveway past out post and formed a barrier in front of the actual ranch house in front of the tree line. We were told under no uncertain terms to just be ready among other instructions.
We sat in the car in silence. There was dead silence as the men had taken up positions. This lasted for about 45 minutes. It was the longest, quietest 45 minutes of my life.
My wife and I had already talked in depth about the likelihood of not walking away that night. We assumed that revenge for the standoff at the overpass would be quick and surgical. Earlier in the day we explained what we were doing to our 12 year old daughter, left instructions for my son to take her and raise her if we didn't return, kissed them goodbye and left to what we thought may be the end of our time here on earth and the beginning of a new America for our daughter to enjoy.
All that preparation and prayer does little to calm the nerves in dead silence under a fast disappearing moon. As we prepared, my heart was calm, my mind was sharp, but my legs almost failed me. It was like my body, from the waist down had a mind of its own.
I sensed NO desire from anyone to engage. I saw determination, resolution and what appeared to me to be experience.
We had met Jerry a day or so before. His conversation was filled with affirmations of faith. He prayed with some of the men at random times. We were impressed at his leadership and his faith.
Throughout the week we met quite a few of the guys from all over the country. Not ONE seemed to be a Rambo type. I came away from there with a renewed sense of hope and chastised myself for falling for the media stereotype of idiots carrying guns just waiting to shoot somebody.
I don't know much about military strategy. But I do know a lot about people. What I saw was a group of people that I only dreamed still existed in this country.
Regarding your comment about the volunteer who was a felon: I have to wonder how you can turn away a man who came to stand with you for fear of the media. Is that for real? You are afraid the media, the same media that thinks we are all felons, and the same media who, with trick reporting labeled Cliven Bundy a racist would find out that a volunteer was a convicted felon and run with it?
There are millions of "felons" whose rights have been violated just as bad as Bundys.
Many are "felons" for crimes that are no longer even crimes. But apparently the media stereotypes have gotten to you.
I'm "a'wonderin" if maybe you are the provocateur.
For now we have put lifetime OK membership on old.

Anonymous said...

Jerry DeLemus. Jac cumerford (sp?) was the person that Stewart was talking about that pushed the veteran gentleman down, Jerry's best friend, both from nh.

Anonymous said...

About 7th paragraph up from the bottom, two up from the 'lessons, you typed "Jerry Homan."

I'm assuming that is a typo you would like to fix, and you mean Steve.

Thank You, and God bless you and all whom you love.


Anonymous said...

_ "Who is the Jerry to whom you make many references? - May 1, 2014 at 6:57 AM _

Jerry DeLemus, from New Hampshire.


Phelps said...

Integration of the smaller units is the key. There has to be a method, and it has to be that way or the highway. Either you find a place in the chain of command, or you are treated as an agent provocateur.

The smaller units can be valuable, whatever their motivation, if they can be corralled and harnessed. One of my favorite quotes about the Texas Revolution is, "Some were for independence; some for the constitution of 1824; and some for anything, just so it was a row, but we were all ready to fight."

Anonymous said...

In the movie "Dirty War" there is a line from a Muslim terrorist that has stuck with me daily ever since I watched it. The fella says - that's the difference between you and us ..... War divides you but it unites us.

That certainly shows true here, doesn't it.

It seems to me that some "leadership" aims for numbers, for bodies, thinking that more is better. A truly communist idea if there ever was one. I'd rather be with ten dedicated and honorable people than a thousand half hearted warm bodies. Isn't that the lesson our whole country learned about Vietnam and the imposed draft? Apparently, some have forgotten that lesson, or they never learned it.

Great analysis there, Mike. Spot on at every point.

Anonymous said...

This is, has been, and always will be the problem with militia organizations and why we need to get our act together. Look at this. No one knows what the fuck they're doing. It's just a gathering of armed people - which is supposed to be a START, not your finished goal.

And this is the main problem that we've had since even the 90s: Too many god damn chiefs and not enough indians. No one is in charge. No one is in command. There is ZERO distinct chain of command. People are looking around at each other just waiting to get orders from whom most of them think is in charge.

Too many chefs trying to argue over what to do instead of doing it. Too many plants doing this shit ON PURPOSE to fuck up the organizations. We need to be professional, competent, commanded, and not be afraid to tell the instigators and morons to FUCK OFF and go home.

It's not a fucking 4th of July party. It's not a fucking book club. We aren't there to swap stories and soak up each others' machismo or any of that bullshit. TAKING FUCKING CHARGE and make a CLEAR chain of command and GET SHIT FUCKING DONE.

SWIFT said...

What you witnessed at the Bundy ranch, is no different than the militia situation in the American revolution. The militias of Pennsylvania did not like those from Massachusetts. The Virginians did not really care for Pennsylvanians, or those from Massachusetts. No one trusted New Jersey because of all the Torries; all eyed Rhode Islanders with suspicion. South Carolina felt the war was a New England war, until it came their way. So, I guess I'm saying we need a Washington right about now.

FG said...

Thank you sir, for the detailed update to the evolving Bundy Boondoggle.

I might suggest two more important lessons that can be learned out of this ongoing evolution:

1. There needs to be a dedicated group of militia-aware reporters that release accurate, DETAILED, 100% on site, at a minimum - DAILY updates, as to what is really happening. These people must have a working understanding of tactical OPSEC. Patriots will not physically support in person, nor fund, a black hole of raw unverified rumors.


2. Bundy's poorly chosen word gaffe, his incorrectly termed "racial speech" nearly cost him everything. If you don't know how to handle the MSM press, and don't understand that you're talking to the enemy, always, then don't talk to the press.

Consider appointing a trusted, articulate, spokesman for yourself or your group.

Anonymous said...

I have posted the below comment at the official OathKeepers site, and while it is awaiting moderation, I do believe it is applicable to this site as well.

Elizabeth Says: Your comment is awaiting moderation.
May 1st, 2014 at 11:53 am

Having followed this very closely, including the post at Sispey Street Irregulars, I am left with an overwhelming realization that most of this could have been avoided had Mr. Payne simply submitted to both Mike’s and Stuart’s implied roles as “gatekeepers” and furnished his bona fides to them for their approval.

Striking in Mike’s debriefing is the continued slinging of epithets, “sociopath, provocateur, fed”, a fine tradition, carried on with great fanfare by members in the video debriefing above.

This indeed is a sad state of affairs.

It is more apparent to me with each passing day, that individually, we must become the leaders we are looking for.

Elizabeth Sutton

Dutchman6 said...

Typo on Steve Homan fixed. Thanks. As for "epithets" -- I calls 'em like I sees 'em.

Anonymous said...

True it is that all must lead our own individual actions ourselves. Every group, likewise, needs A LEADER. To me, this is the one who says. "This is where i am going and here is why" and others go down that same path BECAUSE they WANT TO - not because they are "ordered" to.

No "chain of command" stands if it isn't RESPECTED. remember folks, respect is EARNED.

Anonymous said...

As the originator of the intel report given to Stuart Rhodes, I'm gravely disappointed at the overall reaction to it... While the best decision possible was made, the comments of me being a disinformant is completely false. I have no false motivations in passing that info and struggled with figuring out what to do. My only suggestion was the use of Mylar to hide people from IR signatures. While protecting the Bundys from this Administration is important, women and children contrary to Sheriff Mack's statement is considered to be protected. I will show all evidence needed to defend my position and decision as my training and MDMP has been extensive.

Semper Fidelis said...

Regarding the part of this article that referred to the young couple, one, the man, who admitted to being a felon, another person there should have been checked out regarding his felon status. According to a conversation with Blaine Cooper, Blaine said he too was a felon. Now, only Blaine knows that for sure, but he should have been checked out prior to allowing him on stage with the Bundy family as part of their personal security detail.

I would highly suggest that Mr. Cooper be vetted more carefully for what is is and is not.

Anonymous said...

Can't say much here but I'd be glad to help folks to understand the disinformation game, think tank experience included....

CzarChasmIII said...

Anonymous said @ May 1, 2014 at 11:33 AM:
"I'm "a'wonderin" if maybe you are the provocateur.
For now we have put lifetime OK membership on old."

I've got three questions for you, Sir, one for the first sentence, and two for the second:

1) Do you have even the slightest clue who you are addressing in the first sentence?

2) Did you watch and/or listen to OK'ers' video posted in the body of the piece you "replied" to here?

2a) If so, do you have any first-hand information that would tend to refute anything said in their own defense to the militia conference allegations OK'ers were addressing in their video?

Lastly, thanks for giving your observations of what happened that you were either involved in or eye-witness to, but I have to ask; do you consider there to be any value to the Patriot and/or III'per community to further foist unsubstantiated accusations towards people you don't know on the basis of nothing more valid than "maybe?" C'mon man, there are lessons to be learned from all of this, and one of them seems to me to be don't spew about people or events that you don't have more than a "hunch" about.


Anonymous said...

This whole episode is ridiculous. Drone strikes... Really? The videos posted on both sides are just flat out ammunition to make everyone within a 10' poles reach of this appear like total paranoid clowns at best. The rambling nonsense post on the oath keeper site followed by the nearly one hour circle jerk were basically attempts at why the drone paranoia wasn't cause to be written off as the idiots they appear to be.

Everyone who points out this whole thing was two steps below stupid is called a plant or a fed or whatever. Jesus! The one response that could possibly make us seem even more stupid has become the go to card.

Look, here's the deal, oath keepers has a flashy message that appeals to people but they make it so ridiculous (10 orders we won't obey and every local leader is neither prior service or LEO but rather a hanger on wanna-be survivalist type) only the truly motivated and disconnected are willing to keep giving Stewert Rhodes money. Do these people even demand accountability? Do they know how their money is spent? Probably not but they all want to believe so damn bad they are willing to eat shit and pat Rhodes on the back over his prudent decisions on possible drone strikes! Whatever!

WolfK4GHL said...

Anyone that has been in the military knows the chain of command. This works for two reasons. 1) They are under contractual commitment to be there and have accepted it 2) they are being paid to be there and 3) the threat of jail is very real for refusal to obey orders along with loss of pay. Did someone forget the last two?
As someone who has spent half a lifetime dealing with volunteers in public service, I'm here to tell you how it SHOULD have gone and would have worked.
In the 1970's, California Fire realized that there was a need for a command structure that could be used in any incident with various different groups of people. No matter paid or volunteer, it had to work flawlessly and seamlessly. Based loosely on the military chain of command, the Incident Command System was born.
ICS is very simple. The Incident Commander (IC) has complete and ultimate control AND RESPONSIBILITY over the incident.
From what I have seen, the person "in charge" at the ranch was trying to deal with the WHOLE incident every little minute aspect of it. WRONG on so many levels. He should have been EITHER Operations Section Chief, OR the IC. If he was the IC, then HOW things get done are beyond his control. If he is Ops Chief then WHO does the jobs is his responsibility but not HOW they do it! ICS is not about micromanagement.
Check-in table good!!!! Identifying and documenting who's on the ground, who they are with if anyone, their capabilities, their emergency contact info, their equipment they brought with them (they DID do all this right?) is all part of PLANNING Section Resources Unit Leader ultimately, and when they have been processed, then they go to Manpower pool under the Staging Area Manager who is under Operations. (Refer to ICS 207 form)
Operational periods are designated for everyone AND for the incident. Planning puts the Operational PLAN together while consulting with Finance, Logistics, Planning, Operations AND the IC, then they submit it to the IC, who signs off on it, and it defines who is doing what, where, when and why. (refer to ICS form 201)
In all this, the Communications Unit Leader has the responsibility of taking the PREPLANNED COMMUNICATIONS PLAN off the shelf, opening it up, looking at the single (or two) sheets that have the current local frequencies and modes, as well as the long distance modes, figuring out which email modes are available and whom to relay info to (internet/winlink/carrier pigeon) and putting all this info into the ICS 205 form and making sure this info is available to everyone who needs it. Also Comms Unit is responsible for ensuring all comms equipment is configured, setup, accounted for, and recovered.
If you have made it this far, Thank you. The Incident Command System is in use every state and federal agency. The Red Cross, and other NGO's (non-governmental organizations) use it EFFECTIVELY because their people are trained, practiced, and knowledgeable about it and AGREE TO USE IT. No matter if they are paid or volunteer, everyone agrees to use it or goes HOME!
One last thing. In the ICS/NIMS systems, it doesn't matter who you are. The position you are capable of is where you are placed based on training and experience. NOT your title or rank with ANY organization. If I was in charge and I put Rhodes in a position I needed him in, and he didnt like it, he has two choices. Do it, or get off my incident and dont come back. Period. Ego's and Attitude's are left back at home and NOT AT THE INCIDENT!!!
I will repeat that based on what I have seen and read of this whole thing....
And until the above sentence sinks in TO ALL PARTIES INVOLVED, all you will EVER have at ANY incident you are involved with is a dick measuring contest while others who are willing and able actually get things done that need to be done.

Paul X said...

Seems to me, even without all the errors, things could have gone a Hell of a lot worse.

There is learning from experience. There is also Monday morning quarterbacking, and there is also navel-gazing.

One can go overboard. Humans aren't perfect. Tyrants are not omnipotent. The Revolution is not over because things were messy in one minor event.

If I were a betting man, I'd still put all my money on the resistance. The ruling class have painted themselves into a corner. They are not getting out of it just because they have some experience with provocateurs and propaganda.

The one thing I can suggest other than the above is that some folks ought to be sent home. But I suppose that is obvious, and would happen with better discipline.

Anonymous said...

Wow. Words fail me. I can only presume that the FED.Gov or some other agency has started their own "Fake Militia" that was sent in to cause problems. To my way of thinking the actions of some of the "Militia " people were too irrational for there to be any other explanation.(Or do I
just have too much faith in my fellow man)It almost seems like they wanted to cause shootings to occur between individuals within the camp. God help us.

Anonymous said...

Both the militias and Oathkeepers will have a very limited sphere of influence in the large picture of the future. They may see this and maybe are trying to control the narrative. The powers that be don't fear people with guns. They fear a lot of angry people with guns. There is a huge difference here. A drone strike would have produced just that. This would cause things to spiral out of control very quickly, possibly devolving into a full blown civil war. The greater American populations actually sees this. So do the powers that be. This is the reason for the character assasination of Cliven Bundy. In this sense men like myself laugh when I see these tales of hurt feelings posted by both sides. Grow up and get over yourselves. Much like the Ukraine, battle lines are being drawn here. One spark may ignite it. If that does happen, arguing about who stole a FLIR, or who said what to the media will be inconsequential. This isn't going to just end. The government never admits guilt, and they never just walk away. That being said, I suggest that you all take this time to bury the hatchet, supply up, and dig in because the storm is coming.

Steve Ramsey said...

The bigger question is what is the goal now?

Is the plan to sustain this operation forever? Until legislation is passed? A new POTUS elected? Until Harry Red shrivels up and blows away?

Or is this the OK/militia equivalent of Afghanistan.

Sooner or later, Mr Bundy is going to have to deal with the authorities himself, and in person.

Is the goal due process?

Is the goal to lure the feds into a firefight with the militia or vice versa?

One mistake and just like Lexington, we may never know who fired first much less why.

At any rate, nobody is talking the long haul here. And of all people, the only person to suggest an end game is Kerodin. I'm no particular fan of the name changer/shape shifer, but his idea of maybe considering Mr Bundy's life saved and going home should be in the fishbowl of ideas.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the article. It answered a lot of questions.

The assault on Mr. Homan should never have happened. Once it did, the person who did so should have been shown the nearest exit.

Thievery of others' property cannot be excused. People putting their lives on the line should not have to worry about items missing when they return, especially when they have donated needed items to those that did not have them.

The series of incidents shows what happens when large groups of people get together, even though they may have the same general outcome in mind. A lesson to be learned for future situations.

Leadership is needed. to echo SWIFT, we need a Washington.

Anonymous said...

Ain't no drama like militia drama!

But really, why wouldn't a bunch of armed rednecks camping together in the Nevada desert be reasonable, intelligent group of individuals?

United not divided said...

Anyone who wants to know who Jerry is just follow the link to his facebook page:

Mistakes were made on both sides and we should use this as a learning experience!!!
I think it's highly irresponsible to call anyone a fed, plant, inside agent etc. without any hard proof. I guess we haven't come very far from the Salem witch trial have we?

Everyone needs to bury the hatchet and focus and stand united whatever you call yourselves.
This website should be used for bringing people together, not dividing!

Anonymous said...

Personally I didn't go to this for a lot of reasons and the primary among them is I loathe the idea of working with the larger "militia movement" as a whole. I have had several years of experience dealing with varying Militias now and have been fortunate enough to fall in with a small group of good dedicated people. I know if there is ever to be a fight for liberty that those men and women are trust worthy, capable and honest people who will watch my back and I will watch theirs. I can't say that about the larger "militia movement" as I have run into too many of these "fruits and nuts" who think they deserve to be the grand poomba of all militia forces and to them no deed is below them to get there. My experiences with the larger "Militia movement" in the past has definitely been soured by these people.

To put it bluntly as much as I wanted to be there I absolutely refuse to put my life in the hands of the "fruits and nuts". I am a combat veteran I spent two years in Iraq, I know what war looks like and I refuse to go into a fight with "fruits and nuts" who's sole motivation in life is self gratification and fulfilling their delusions of grandeur to cover my 6.

We as a movement need to have a serious discussion on these "fruits and nuts" as they do us more damage then the feds ever could ever hope to do. I refuse to believe all of them are federal agents or agent provocateurs and I am absolutely certain the majority of them are just people with problems, real problems that should be addressed by professionals. I have met a lot of different units over my time and I know most of the people in them are good people however these same good people are often manipulated by these "fruits and nuts" in their efforts at attaining power. For a long time I have advocated decentralization of leadership mainly because it's harder for these "fruits and nuts" to wreak havoc that way but with situations like this doubtlessly coming in the future we as a movement need to come up with a solution for these "fruits and nuts" and do so quickly.

Anonymous said...

Am curious who the security and militia participants at the ranch are, who have taken over. Interesting what you can find on the web:
Ryan Payne is related somehow to 'Summer' Nehrir Payne.
Plenty of Tweets (@SummerNehrir - I think honest, Patriot & Libertarian, including ab. the Bundy Ranch - suddenly stops 13th April).
In Dec. 2011: "19 days left for me in Southern California. Then on to Montana to build a #safe and off the grid environment for my children."

Booda 'Bear' Cavalier: You have got to see these pics to believe :
Sweet Red Mohawk and earrings. A good head for top bodyguard, no doubt.

Anonymous said...

Clearly there are lessons to be learned from the challenges at the Bundy Ranch following the April 12 victory. I believe that the national leaderships of militias and Oathkeepers will become wiser as a result.

What one poster here mentioned is true for me. The poster suggested a daily OFFICIAL update, as a way of solidifying and unifying nationwide support for the Bundy Ranch situation. I totally agree. I visited the ranch six days after the stand-off, for a barbeque gathering and to see for myself if it was real. I found that it was. It being the freedom/patriot movement. It being the honesty and righteousness of the Bundys, and their supporters. A clear-eyed, American-through-and-through bunch.

I sent money to Oathkeepers after that. I sent money to the Bundy's, too. I wanted to go back there and serve, though I am older now and not a military man besides. I wanted to serve the cause of freedom, and still do.

But then this division in the ranks struck, and the ground there seems like quicksand and not safe. Photos of donated food being now given to others in need, because boots on the ground never arrived, are posted online, and are distressing. As is reports of guards pulling guns on each other, and attacking older vets.

The division is what the enemy wants. We need to grow out of it, and get organized. The whole country needs this. The enemy is master of divide and conquer.

I think of George Washington's ragtag army retreating from battlefield after battlefield in the early years of the Revolution. How they stuck it out, those few, is something I wonder sometimes, and I compare ourselves to those men in those times, with where we are now, all of us. May we have the patience and courage to continue, and the faith to stay on the course, for the freedom of all.

Anonymous said...

To: CzarChazmlll

I know exactly who I was talking to. While I have been a long time reader of this site, I'm questioning either the motive or the sense of what I have read here today.

Regarding the other questions: Knowing how the media works there can only be one possible reason for the "roundtable" video of the Oath Keepers - because it only served ONE purpose - that purpose being belittling the sacrifices the fine men and women are making who they were supposed to be joining in Bunkerville.

What kind of nutjobs get on youtube, when engaged against such a vile and deceptive enemy, take the opportunity to unload that much dirty laundry.

I was in the Navy. Sure, we had some incompetent morons. But I wouldn't get on TV trying to undermine the entire US Navy bringing up those few.

If you need more evidence of the motives of the leadership of the Oathkeepers watch the Ralston Report that aired today and will be on the internet tomorrow.

The Oathkeepers who appeared on there were posterboys for gun control.

Thanks Oath Breakers. Good Riddance. You served your masters well.

Anonymous said...

Thanks much for the time and effort that it took to pull this story together. many lessons to be learned from this ongoing affair. it is thought provoking that we as individual militias rarely consider working with any group beyond our trusted units to either side of us in our state. we should find some way to make a co-ordinating interface between units that will minimize the rub and maximize capability and standardize that. but calling for a central command figure-head for the militia and imposing somebody's "standards" is for people that just wish they were back in the military playing army where things are simple. accept that an unorganized militia, which is what most of us are, can never be the same as an organized national military. you have to think beyond that. thanks again for all your work.

Anonymous said...

I sure appreciate the God-given wisdom and restraint of Stewart Rhodes. Let's keep him closely in our prayers. Oathkeepers is not a militia and doesn't compel anyone to join them. It's a voluntary association. Those who are involved do so of their own free will. I appreciate the mutual respect I see among Oathkeeper leadership. I appreciate the lack of "nuts and fruits" I see at OKer gatherings. May their tribe increase. I see a good balance in the leadership and the organization and the individuals of courage and wisdom. It is true that often "restraint is the better part of courage/valor" Stewart Rhodes walks in this balance! He displays humility and servanthood as well. He is an excellent example to all of us, especially those of us who tend to be a bit hotheaded, like I'm tempted to be at times.

Unknown said...

The most important victory for the free people of this nation is a morale victory. Regardless of what comes of this, it was a victory. People from all over came to the aid of someone who was being pushed around. They stood in defiance of the federal menace. If we are to remain free, we must turn even our defeats into victories in the hearts of all our brothers and sisters, that they might have courage to stand in the knowledge that they are not alone, and they stand for a cause that is greater than the tyrants who seek to squash it. All the fedrat strategies focus on the demoralization of their opponents, and the polarization of the people against us. If we can build the image of being intelligent,reasonable, but totally fed up, their job will be much more difficult. Refuse to be marginalized.

Unknown said...

Test comment?

Unknown said...

Ohh I see, sorry about that, first time using this... Mobile is a pain sometimes.

Anonymous said...

To WolfK4GHL: You are on the money about ICS. Been there, done that, seen it work. I like your definition: "The position you are capable of is where you are placed based on training and experience. NOT your title or rank with ANY organization. . Period. Ego's and Attitude's are left back at home and NOT AT THE INCIDENT!!!"

Volunteers that show up that sincerely want to help, but don't have the background to man the line work Quartermaster, Clerical, Communications, Maintenance, 2nd Man/Spotter...whatever. No one just walks in with his/her gear, fills out a card, and is instantly frontline. That's not how it's done in the real world...

Anonymous said...

Agree with anon above, this Ralston vid is disgusting. Ya I think this dialogue is designed to give OK legitimacy and discredit militia. F Y OK.

Karl said...

Thanks for sharing your perspective. It is helpful, yet I'm still trying to put all the pieces together.

Regardless, you touched on one important thing: every volunteer should have made the decision that they'd only leave on a gurney, or if/when the Bundy's dismissed them. In that case, sleepy, incompetent (or cowardly) commanders would have failed to evacuate the OK folks.

I hope, as you say, all are recalibrating their SOPs with this new info.

Anonymous said...

Good lessons for all patriots. Thanks Mike!

Anonymous said...

Jeff Cooper's rules of Gun Safety

1. All guns are always loaded
2. Never point the muzzle of a gun towards anything you don't want to destroy.
3. Properly identify your target - make sure you can see it clearly and a shaking bush is not a target.
4. Do not touch the trigger until your muzzle is pointed toward a properly-identified target that you want to shoot.
The beauty of those simple rules is that two or more rules must be violated to accidentally shoot anyone or any thing.

I make my grandchildren memorize those rules before I put a gun into their hands the first time. I make kids repeat those rules to me before any gun-handling is allowed. I think those 4 simple rules should be taught to anyone before a gun is put into their hands.

Anonymous said...

It's clear that operations should have been delegated to those with command experience. Founding a group does not make a person the most qualified to lead in every situation - whether Oathkeeper, militia, or girl scout. After watching the videos and reading the reports, I believe it is a miracle no one was killed. Praise God for that.

Anonymous said...

Thank-you Mike for a great write up. Very good information. But nothing was said a out who Ryan Payne really is with OMA..Operation Mutual Aide. Him Booda Bear, Blaine Cooper and Jerry are all part of that group. You really need to check into who they are and what they are about. Frankly they scare the crap out of me, they are no better than BLM!

chris eaglin said...

Thank-you,Well written article,that is well worth the read!.

Anonymous said...

A well written article,that is well worth the read,Thank-you.

Anonymous said...

As an Oath Keeper in a small PNW town I've had to goto City Hall meetings and stand up against the unconstitutional Agenda 21 land grab crap the county and state are currently implementing. People in the audience used to get excited that an Oath Keeper was in the house, as I would walk to the mic to testify.

However the public is fickle and I've had to remove some of the Oath Keeper identifiers from my vehicles to prevent theft and vandalism. I've not had those happen yet but negative comments are floating around my small town, I figure it's only a matter of time.

My wife and I are the only Oath Keepers in our small town and very capable of taking care of ourselves. I just don't want to have to deal with piddly crap or having people come in our yard and mess with our beloved pets, because my response would be the same no matter the age or sex of the individual committing the crime.

I hope "WE" learned something from the Bundy Ranch and can set up a team strategy with other groups. The one good way we can show the Feds that they did not win is for us to become united and stronger than ever.

Anonymous said...

Greetings, and God bless.

There are a lot of lessons to learned from this. Hopefully, after it's all settled out and integrated we will have something like a patriot's UW version of "The Defense of Duffer's Drift". If you haven't read it, do so.

Anonymous said...

The call right now should be Advance, we have them on the run. Take a long step back and see. You took them by suprise and they ran. They are getting readyto throw us in to tyrany, but we took them by supprise. All leaders from every state militia, quikly come together with an Incident Response Plan. Stuart Rhodes put together our morale high ground and the Bundys our cause. The war they dont want you to win is open national organization. UNITY. Advance with an Incident Response Plan all the way to the National Guard. Stuart Rhodes was right, the American people will show. Create the tier and positions of expertise and theywill show to fill them. When they are running you advance.

SJ said...

WolfK4GHL As the wife and mother of a volunteer first responder family (EMT's and Fire Fighters) thank you for spelling this out for everyone.

If every one of these movements and organizations would start drilling the ICS mantra home within their groups and putting it on their websites in such a way people would HAVE to read it; if it were printed up and handed out to all who show up at incidents like this (along with providing the names of the go-to people filling each position as they are filled), I think improved results and better-oiled machine will be the outcome.

Chaos in the face of a well organized opponent is only effective in the short term...until the opponent gets a quick read on the situation. A disjointed front provides many "holes" for exploitation. A united team can control those holes and create intentional ones in order to channel the energies of the opponent toward specific areas, thus allowing the "home team" time to assess the opponent's holes as well.

If you want our country to look like Iraq, fine. Continue the chest beating, declaring my dog is better than blood is redder. Time is on the side of the team with unlimited resources and no PERSONAL skin in the game. If you really do want a future for your children and grandchildren, then it is crucial to learn to work together as a team and do your part. You may have been a General in the last skirmish, but if your assigned role in the current is potato be the best damn potato peeler you can be KNOWING you are integral to the success of your team's endeavour.

I was a hotshot once. I accomplished a few things being out in front leading the charge. I looked around and took a good hard read on things in my life and made the decision to fall back into a support role because THAT is where the greatest need was. THAT is where I could make the biggest difference.

I have worked like hell here in the shadows. No shiny medals, no wall filled with awards, seldom even an ass-pat (maybe half a dozen) over the last 17 years of my life. Now I am worn out, crippled and broken. What do I have to show for it? My TEAM, all those whom I supported, those whose accomplishments I made possible by my efforts, have been highly successful. Those who are the 'Face' of my team have received many ass-pats, awards and commendations...and they could never have done it without me scrubbing the toilets so to speak. *I* know what I have done...even if no one else ever does.

ICS First on scene is incident commander until and unless that command is relinquished to another. Follow the chain of command. Do your assigned job, even if it is passing out water, regardless of how far up the food chain you may have been in a previous situation. Your team can't succeed without this help. If you do not want to be a team player, then at least leave so as not to become a liability or casualty. Let the people working as a team do their job.
(FYI: This is why looky-loos are dispersed on accident scenes as well).

Anonymous said...

Having just return from a week with the "Fruit and Nut Brigade" this situation reminds me of the three blind men describing an elephant. One person's 'fruit and nut' is another person's patriot. Your description of this group is erroneous, inaccurate, or outright false and typical of mainstream media coverage. You should be ashamed. Many of the members have years of experience in border work and know how to operate with judgement and restraint. Granted, the 'leader's' rhetoric is exaggerated, crude and often over the top but his recommendations are spot on.

After the first few days this was no longer a defensive mission other than protecting the ranch from media and lookie loos but became a PR mission to convince America that militias were not gun crazy, 'terrorists' but regular people like everybody else. Unfortunately, the "Fruit and Nut Brigade" is the only group doing this successfully.

When people cross the river and turn the corner toward Bundy's ranch they see a group of Americans camping out. They come from all over the country and all walks of life. They are the front line of defense and communication. This is a restrained presentation - perhaps only one or two sidearms visible in the entire camp. Women and children are often there. Visitors are welcomed in, offered water and relaxed conversation about the situation and sent on their way with a pocket Constitution. Local people are constantly dropping off supplies and thanks.

If they venture farther down the road they find militia in full camo and battle gear carrying ARs and riding in the back of pickups with long guns like the Taliban. This serves no positive purpose. There is no threat of attack, no imminent danger. This is the boys playing army, scaring the population and giving the media all they need.

When the oathkeepers retreated and the militia retreated this week, all that was left was the "Fruit and Nut Brigade". The Bundys called on them to guard the ranch and they did without question or reservation. They are still there and will be as long as they are needed, even after the media and all your militias have long gone.

Mike, your "Fruit and Nut Brigade" description is inaccurate, divisive, ignorant, disrespectful, insulting and offensive shouldn't be applied to courageous, hard working Americans who behave responsibly and have a better understanding of the situation on the ground than most. I suggest you take a trip out again sometime in the next couple of months and take a look. I belong to the Oathkeepers (still - for now) and the three-pers but there are many sides to the elephant and many jobs to do and name calling doesn't help.

Anonymous said...

For those who are interested in some reading .

Jack hinson's one man war By

McKenney, Tom C

Fyi according to author , jack hinson did not have prior military training or experience.

Citizen soldier ,

A manual of community based defense

By robert bradley The introduction speak's for itself..

Anonymous said...

Not sure who you are writing this as you didn't identify your self.
You make a lot of good points, but you seem to have forgotten that the response to this attack on Clivan Bundy was all volunteer and not some kind of organized goat grab. Face it, the response of patriots of a lot of groups was overwhelming. Had the Reids BLM not deescalated there would have been 100,000 more Bundy supporters there in 48 hours, all at their own expense. We were starting to load up for the trip. You have criticized the response of various groups, but this is what it is all about. Not some organized militia at this point, but the coming together of a whole lot of people from different walks of life voicing their dissatisfaction with the people that we employee abusing the powers that are entrusted in them. The BLM obviously was manipulated by Harry Reid to further his financial interests. Always follow the $'s and you will find the guilty party. That's basic police procedure 101. So what's to be done?

We must elect representatives that will defund these Bureaus that are being manipulated by the power brokers in Washington that disregard the Constitutional powers allotted to the Federal government( our employees) and return the lands and administration of all things not expressly delegated to the federal government to the states. We have been robed of our rights and taxed illegally by the federal government that is now out of our control. It is time to fire the lot of them. I am to old to worry about how their abuse of power affects me but I will do what I have to do for my children and their children's future.
If we have to start all the black shirts so be it. Better get your beans, bullets, and band aids in order. This Circus Maximus isn't going to last forever.

Anonymous said...

"The use of a drone strike on American soil would cause such an outcry that even Obama would be impeached within a week."

Sadly, no it wouldn't.

Americans don't so much as know that the Constitution doesn't permit mandating health care insurance. They think the Supreme Court is the final arbiter.

Americans have become more than willing to give up their liberty.

Warnings for America's Future said...

Having been unable to visit the Ranch/area yet, I have followed the happenings as best I can via internet. I am glad to see these thoughts and experiences voiced. It clarifies some of my thoughts, I watched both videos concerning the milita and oathkeepers response, My reaction to the (ryan) character is that he seemed to be self centered and an antagonist, he threaten to shoot Oathkeepers? what type of fellow does that tell you he is, not there to defend the Bundy's as a Whole organized group, but one with his own agenda, he just doesnt smell right. It seemed the Oathkeepers are the adults with experiance vs others with non or little. Communication and now after reading this sleep deprivation does cause mistakes for all, not counting the stress of the situation. Having delt with bullies most of my life, Ryan seems to fit the bill. Sad that some one seemed to be stiring the pot and setting allies against one another, divide and conqure sounds like a plant putting dirt in the gears. There are lessons to learn from this, as has been spoken of, I hope that the mature adults and warriors will get it figured out, and next stand will have a clear and present plan, to vet those who come, weed out the fruits / nuts as they do not help overall. And then have set assignments for all parties involved, experianced combat vets maybe teaming up with those who need to learn, pair training, to educate on what needs to be done. As a team we can survive and beat tyranny, once divided and focused on own agenda's vs. the mission will get people killed. I learn as I watch and read, As it is, the Bundy ranch is a waiting game, they will wait months, and when everyone is tired and worn, they will make a move, be it arrest or other court actions etc. I am interested in the many stories I am finding about the others who have been fighting for a very long time, Wayne Hage story and others, we need to gather up the hundreds of stories if not thousands from Oregon, California, Utah, Nevada,etc and see the pattern of abuse, then take all these testimonies to where ever it can be seen the most, to alert the rest, the sleepers to the truth. The Feds have learned from the bundy stance, they will change their tactics on the next ones. As I hope you all can learn and become a team, united this nation can be restored once again. Anyone who seeks to divide should be shown the door. As that is the cancer that kills unity. God Bless all who humbly yet firmly seek to restore this Republic.