Posts Tagged ‘military’

Sticher: https://www.stitcher.com/podcast/urbantacticsstudios/warriors-den?refid=stpr itunes:https://podcasts.apple.com/ca/podcast/urban-tactics-krav-maga-warriors/id969549693?mt=2

This is based on the original series UTKM Blog series “Its Not so Black and White” which included “Understanding Use of Force“, “Knee on Neck“, “Police training should be better” and “How we should select for police“. with added commentary in between each. This serious was originally created to take a deeper look at police and use of force after the death of George Floyd. It is recommended that you watch the use of force video on the knee on Neck post.

Sticher: https://www.stitcher.com/podcast/urbantacticsstudios/warriors-den?refid=stpr itunes:https://podcasts.apple.com/ca/podcast/urban-tactics-krav-maga-warriors/id969549693?mt=2
Warriors Den Episode 53 with Paul Johnstone of Street Edge Krav Maga and Jonathan Fader of UTKM
Paul with Nir Maman

Paul Johnstone is a Krav Maga expert, and Bujikan Ninjitsu Black belt, Holds several other black belts as well as was is an Australian Military Vet who served in Afghanistan among other places and is a Former Federal Agent in Australia. He has been doing martial arts since he was 11 and is the founder of Street Edge Krav Maga International which he founded when he felt other Krav Maga organizations were not sufficiently preparing students for real world violence. Paul and Jonathan originally met during a Nir Maman Instructor Course in 2012 in LA.

You can contact Paul via Facebook if you would like to train with him in Australia on his Facebook page.

Judging when to use force, and to what degree, is complex and time sensitive (Tony Webster)
Audio by: Jonathan Fader

The other week I wrote about the recent police incident resulting in the death of George Floyd, in the post titled, It’s not so Black and White

As this has become such a large and complicated topic, with factors such as dissidents, political activists, misinformation, and the media all blurring the facts, I thought I would expand on a few aspects of policing and its complex, often intricate, nature. Perhaps you have never heard of these concepts, or perhaps you don’t care, but if you have an open mind you will at least attempt to understand both sides of any argument.

For most of the world’s population, fighting may be a daily reality, or even a way of life; though for many others it is the stuff of nightmares. Now imagine being in a job where at any point you may have to literally fight for your life. This is, for often the case for people in law enforcement. Now imagine being under a constant microscope, whether right or wrong, and having to deal with one of the most complicated situations an officer may ever have to deal with: The appropriate application of force in a given situation.

To clarify (again), in the George Floyd case the use of force was NOT appropriate.

Before I move forward take a look at this:

This is an old “Use of Force” chart I made. One of the regular comments I receive from viewers is, “This is too complicated!”

My response is always, “Correct!”

It is complicated, and that demonstrates the complexity of the decisions and processes that need to go through a person’s brain when making a use of force decision. Add to that the pressure from the awareness that if you screw up you could loose your job, or worse, your life. Then add the pressure of onlookers criticizing you, screaming at you, and filming you. Then add to that the fact that you may not have received the training you felt you needed, or not enough of it.

There could also be further considerations that are not immediately obvious: Is the person on drugs? Are they having a massive adrenaline boost? Are they bigger, stronger, and faster than you?

Forget being in a fist fight, have you ever been in a wrestling match with someone? Do you remember how difficult it was to think and act with someone’s entire body weight against you?

Believe it or not, trying to move another human being who does not want to be moved (or comply at all), is very difficult. It doesn’t really matter what your belief system is, because this is simply a fact. In one example, this anti-police activist found out how difficult it can be. It doesn’t matter the source of the simulation, as, done properly, the results would be the same; it will always be harder than you thought.

It is the hope of every officer, be they police, security, or military, that when an arrest is required verbal commands are enough to elicit compliance. Unfortunately, as you know, this does not always happen.

Even with training it can still be difficult (police generally do not get enough, a topic I will discuss in another post). One thing Krav Maga realized is that when it comes to violent people, you MUST use violence to prevent harm to yourself or others. You can use your words all you want, but if someone is coming after you, then you are going to have to apply force appropriate to the situation. Words do not always work, and whether you want to or not, you will find yourself in a complicated situation where even the slightest mistake can get you fired, suspended, or dead.

What about those who didn’t resist violently? Well, you are correct, in those cases extreme use of force would not be warranted. A lighter touch is certainly needed when the situation allows for it. But, let’s say someone is just being difficult when putting the handcuffs on, and despite multiple verbal commands to comply they chose not to? Then a slightly higher use of force is needed.

Prior to the recent protests many people believe (usually on the left) that the only people who should have the permission for use of force is the government and its agencies (the police, FBI, etc.). If this is the case, if you believe this, then you must admit you know very well that you should comply with the police when necessary. Yes, there are bad apples out there, as the internet has shown, and these should all be removed from duty completely and immediately. But, for the rest of them, they will never know if any given person is going to comply or not. If the answer is “not,” then given the authority granted to the police by you, the citizen, then you must understand use of force is warranted to elicit compliance.

Enter, the complicated decision tree above. The situation will go well, or not, depending on your experience, skill, and training. On a good day, the officer involved possesses all three. On a bad day, maybe only one.

Let’s add in one more complicating factor: Exhaustion. Police often work long shifts that may be physically and mentally demanding. Catch even a well-trained officer with good morals on a day they are at their limit, and even they are capable of making a mistake.

The point is, if you have never stepped in a ring, on a mat, or into and octagon (or just done some backyard wrestling), your ability to judge what is appropriate and effective use of force is severely limited.

It is HARD to wrestle, or tackle and control another person. It takes lots of consistent training. It takes a clear mind and consistent application. At the end of the day, all things considered, it is not so black and white. From moment to moment the appropriate use of force may change, and decisions need to be made in that moment, whether it was right or wrong in hindsight. Failure to choose and act could be catastrophic.

So, if you feel it’s appropriate to get educated on the facts, like trying to understand what it might be like for a Black person in American. Then I urge you to do the same and get educated on all the facts, including trying to understand how hard policing is and how hard it is to be good at appropriate use of force.

Fight the good fight, get educated, expand your horizons, and get out of that echo chamber.

(The next in the series will discuss police training.)

Written by: Jonathan Fader

This video has been circling my Facebook feed for a while. There is much wrong with this scenario and I would like to discuss it, but first, watch and contemplate.

Here are a few things that come to mind:

  1. Never draw a weapon you are not willing to use –

    The police officer had already given the man numerous warnings. The man had already attempted to physically steal something from someone indicating he may be violent. When he drew his taser he gave several warnings and was almost in arms reach. Yet he hesitated. Why he did so I can only guess but the reality is from the moment you draw any weapon lethal or not you must do so knowing that you may have to use it in a matter of seconds. I always teach that hesitation can mean death with it comes to life or death situations. This perhaps is one of the reasons I dislike indecision. In Canada when it comes to firearms safety there is a rule that you should never point a gun at something you are not willing to shoot and the same goes in this case. The officer gave far too many warning for my liking and got far too close to a man who had his hands in his pockets and a history. Thus if you aren’t willing to use the weapon no matter its lethality then drawing it will only make things worse.

  2. Always assume they have a weapon –

    This is one of the basic concepts I teach. Along with assuming they have friends. In this case, a police officer should assume this 100% especially when they refuse to take their hands out of the pocket after so many warnings. Even if it had been a knife the individual would still have been close enough to launch forward with it, remember the 21-foot rule. In failing to make the decision that this individual had a weapon it could have delayed the response of the officer who could have clearly shot the taser in time to at least stun the attacker prior to pulling the trigger (though this would not be a guarantee.)

  3. The proximity is concerning –

    The officer got very close. Drawing the taser means he could have shot from a farther distance, again I bring up the knife scenario. Being this close, however, and with a free hand (not on the taser. The officer could have if he knew how used his free hand to re-direct the firearm or the assailant’s arm just long enough to avoid a shot and deploy his own weapon. It is, however, quite common for police officers to be lacking such skills. Which is especially dangerous the closer to someone you are as with this case. Had he been farther away also it is possibly more shots would have missed due to the fact pistols are hard to shoot and the nature in which the assailant was holding the pistol.

  4. Luck had every thing to do with survival –

    Luck had every thing to do with survival – This officer clearly misread this situation and was extremely lucky. As mentioned above pistols are difficult to be accurate with out training but at point-blank range which this was can be deadly. THe officer is lucky that he turned in time to avoid any fatal shots. Sometimes when you make the wrong decision, or even if you make the right one the difference is only ever luck and nothing more. Never forget this.

 

If you have more videos you would like me to analyze or comment on sent the links to info@urbantacticscanada.com

 

Locked ‘n’ loaded in Tel Aviv

Posted: September 27, 2016 by urbantacticskravmaga in Uncategorized
Tags: , , , , ,

 

I have traveled around the world, encountered and observed many places, and from my experience, there is no country like Israel. Once, I was sitting in a cafe in Tel Aviv’s central bus station on a Sunday morning, and looking out I can see uniform-clad young men and women carrying weapons returning to their bases. Tourists watch in awe at the sheer amount of weapons being carried on the streets. Residents pass by without even seeing it.

It is a normal part of their lives.

Taking a closer look, I see that not every weapon is the same, nor are their owners. Each weapon is different. Some have carrying handles, some have flashlights, some are old, some are new, some are made out of plastic and some are made out of metal. Each soldier is also different. Their colorful unit shoulder tags, strings and berets tell people which unit they belong to and what kind of specialty they possess. Some soldiers wear their uniform like pajamas and others iron their shirt straight and tight.

A soldier’s personality is shown through his or her rifle

Throughout history, soldiers everywhere have put effort into decorating their swords, bows, knives and other weapons. It is not just for the sake of art, but to make a statement and show one’s character. However, none of these warriors of the past could have imagined that in today’s Israel, weapons would be part of the youth culture. In Israel, weapons take the place of the backpacks and sneakers worn in North America.

Soldiers with an antique model belong to either an armor or artillery unit, but in battle they use tanks or cannons, not their rifles. They are saying, “I only carry this rifle around because I have to, I do not think I will have to use this old piece of junk.” Soldiers with newer models are saying, “I am a first-line combat soldier and this is my pride and joy. I am cool because my rifle is the newest.” Additional gadgets, such as sights or an extra tactical foregrip, become a statement telling everyone, “Look! I am different from rest of you guys.”

It’s just like taking your phone with you

These young troops don’t just carry their weapons to and from the bases. They also have it on them while performing their ordinary daily routines: shopping, walking on the street, sitting down for lunch, or even kissing loved ones. I once saw a young soldier at a cafe using a laptop – she held her rifle between her legs to protect it, while drinking coffee and surfing the internet. Another intriguing sight was a young male soldier wearing a sleeveless tee, sandals, a backpack, and his rifle. The whole picture was an oxymoron. Is he relaxing? Or is he getting ready to fight? His outfit tells me he could be merely taking a stroll, heading to the beach, or waiting for a train, but his loaded weapon tells me otherwise.

In a country like Israel, carrying a weapon is a statement of youth. Rifles are often a statement of toughness and machismo, but in a place where being dauntless and courageous is everything, the warrior ethos is unisexual. Even before the creation of this nation, both men and women fought side-by-side here, protecting their homeland.

Once, I asked a young Israeli woman who had her rifle slung across one shoulder and her purse on the other, what was inside her purse. She said, “You know, the usual girl stuff: make-up, lipstick, tissues, and my extra M16 magazine.” In that moment, I realized that the Israeli saying was true, “If you are going to break a girl’s heart, make sure to do it when she is not carrying her rifle.”

//giphy.com/embed/v8omVdExrQ9ig

via GIPHY

Gun culture is a normal part of growing up in Israel

Seeing these young soldiers with their duffle bags, rucksacks and weapons, I was violently awakened from the peaceful illusion of Tel Aviv. This country is at war. After a few days of comfort in their homes, these youth – barely old enough to buy a beer in Canada – are going back to their posts, checkpoints, tank turrets, jeeps, or the streets of Gaza. In contrast, most Canadian youth know nothing about self-sacrifice and giving some of their best years to serving their nation.

I know for sure that these young Israeli soldiers would prefer not to spend those three years of service in khaki uniforms, receiving less than $40 a month, and dealing with dangerous terrorists or boring paper work. They would rather use that time to do whatever they want, like travelling, working, or studying as young Canadians do. However, despite the hardship and dangers, every Israeli I have encountered tells me that he or she would do it again for their country.

If I say Urban Tactics Krav Maga is one of the most diversified and dynamic Krav Maga schools in North America, I think there would be very little dispute. Other than having been certified under 4 International Krav Maga Federations, one of our specialties is firearm training and Krav Maga techniques related to firearms, from firearm disarms, tactical shooting to military Krav Maga. We are privileged to have extensive knowledge from our military background as combat arms soldiers and shooting instructors in the Defense Industry.

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50 cal, the author’s favorite gun during his service with CDN Army

However, sometimes when we ask our civilian students at our Krav Maga school here in Vancouver if they would like to participate in some of Krav Maga seminars related to firearms or Firearm Possession Course, some of them ask “Why? What’s the point to learn about guns ? I will never use it.“  ” what’s the point of using guns as cold steel weapon? I will just shoot the guy. ”  Many Vancouverites do not own firearms nor have an interest in it. I was amazed with these students’ response that they do not want to participate because they think any form of firearm training is not useful in a real life threat.

Let us be clear about something:

  1. Armed robbers or other bad guys do not attack their targets with their bare hands. They always want to achieve superiority by having either a knife or a gun; only honorable people fight in equal amount of forces and let their skill determine who the winner is. Bad guys are not looking for a fair fight; they are looking for an easy pay day. If, unfortunately, you end up at the end of barrel and you faint at the first sight of a gun, the chance of you acting calmly is pretty slim. Knowledge is key to calmness and being collective under pressure. To know what type of firearm and the condition of the firearm is vital to survival in dealing with an armed assailant.
  1. If you disarm someone‘s firearm you need to know how to use it, even if you want to disable the gun to prevent the bad guy from using it again. You need to know how to do so fluidly and accurately under stress. Over and over again I see Krav Maga schools or other Krav Maga instructors teach people how to disarm attackers with a gun, but their immediate actions after the disarm makes my heart skip a beat.  Most of them clearly do not know how a real firearm functions, different functionality between a revolver and semi-automatic pistol, nor how to point the gun at the person if they chose to take lethal action. Just because you point a gun at an attacker does not magically make this person stop from taking the gun back or to attack you again. Do you have the will and skill to fire a gun if you chose to and, if you can hit accurately the bad guy, without hurting the bystanders or yourself? If you do not wish to shoot someone, how do you use guns as cold steel weapon and combine with Krav Maga moves ?
  1. Since almost most Israelis have served in the IDF; firearms have always been part of general Krav Maga curriculum from Day One in Israel. After all, almost every 18, 19 old Israeli youth can take apart, put it back a M-16 and be confident with it on the range. Most North American Krav Maga students and instructors cannot rival Israeli Krav Maga student and instructors’ firearm experience. Nonetheless, In order to learn the full system of Krav Maga, you better be good at firearms. You need to learn how to shoot it, disassemble it, then finally disarm it if you have to. Firearm training is a serious issue and takes lots of training time; more so than any other aspects in Krav Maga. People generally need lots of range time with guns to eliminate the fear of the “Boom Stick“, but also be confident that guns are merely tools and be comfortable with them as extension of their limbs.

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Are you Ash or Villagers ?

Last but not least, we do Krav Maga for a reason. We do it not for fitness or completion but to protect our lives. My friend, you want to ask yourself: Is there ever enough training when it comes to protecting your lives, especially about the most efficient killing tool created by man?

Written By: Borki Yony

Edited By: Warren C

Never Again

Krav Maga is a system meant for individuals to know that they can walk safely because they know how to defend themselves. When talking about why Krav Maga was created, Imi Lichtenfeld once said, “so one may walk in peace.”

Whether you are a Jew, Christian, Muslim, American, Israeli, Serbian or a person from any other religion or culture practicing Krav Maga, you must never forget the reason why Krav Maga was created. Imi originally began to develop the system prior to WWII to help himself, his friends and other Jews find a way to fight Nazi thugs and Anti-Semitic aggressors. Why? Because unfortunately for Jews, we have always faced great hatred and animosity no matter what we do.

It is July 2014 and you would pretty much have to be living under a rock to not be aware of Operation Protective Edge by the Israeli Defense Force (IDF). Or, in layman’s terms, the conflict between Israel and Hamas.

The Current Conflict

I say very specifically Israel vs. Hamas, because this time it is NOT Israel vs. the Palestinians; if this was true, there would also be massive military operations in the West Bank and not just Gaza. In order to understand the difference, let’s look at a map.

ISRAEL-PALESTINE-WEB-MAP

 

As you can see, the West Bank, (called that because it is on the west bank of the Jordan River) and Gaza are completely separated by land. Internationally speaking, they are usually recognized as the same entity, but now unfortunately they are not. What is the difference?

First, we must discuss a little history in this regard. In 2000 a conflict known as the second Intifada (1) began. This was a period of extreme violence and terrorism in Israel which led to two things.

Firstly, Israel decided to completely and unilaterally move out of the Gaza strip (2). Prior to 2005 the IDF did in fact, have a presence in both Gaza and the West Bank. However, all military, Israeli and Jewish Civilians were removed during the same year. Yes, that’s right. Israel physically removed Jews from the Gaza strip in order to hand it all back to the Palestinians. Secondly, Israel began to build a security barrier that now runs along the borders of the West Bank only about 4% is an actual wall, the rest is simply a fence (3) . This fence actually reduced, theft and terrorism by as much as 90%, though you will rarely hear that part in the media.

After this occurred, a power struggle arose between two factions in the Palestinian authority, those being Hamas and Fatah. This escalated into a semi-civil war between the two parties, with the result that Hamas completely took over the Gaza strip and, as such, was pushed out of the West Bank by Fatah. (4)

What is the single biggest difference between these groups? Hamas is an internationally recognized terrorist organization (5)(6)whose sole purpose is to destroy Israel and not the protection or governance of its people.

Hamas quickly realized it was now isolated in the Gaza strip with no means to easily leave, or to commit acts of terror in Israel. In order to perpetrate new terrorists acts in Israel it needed to develop a new strategy. I will call it “The Missile Strategy”.  Hamas periodically fires rockets, and now missiles, into Israel which bypasses the security walls (7). These rockets are made in Gaza or supplied by other countries like Iran.

This recent conflict started like the last few years with Hamas launching missiles indiscriminately into Israel. This time, the difference is that Israel has the Iron Dome, a system which intercepts and destroys perhaps 80% of them while they are still in the air. However, it is not a perfect system and thus some still get through. If Israel did not have the Iron Dome the damage incurred would be catastrophic.

On July 17th, Israel launched “Operation Protective Edge”, which was a ground offensive whose mission was to dismantle Hamas’ terror network of tunnels and missile launch sites, which had been proven to be located in schools, hospitals and civilian households.

The Shameful Global behavior

As usual, the media and the global community are obsessed with this conflict. Let us not forget that there is practically a civil war in the Ukraine that has resulted in the death of 300+ individuals travelling on a civilian air carrier that was tragically shot down. But to the world, that conflict, or any other conflict is not at all important any more, just the one in the Middle East. This obsession with Israel is Anti-Israel and Anti-Semitic, and it only demonstrates the fact that history tends to repeat itself.

The fact is, Israel is fighting a terrorist organization (Hamas) that is not only attacking Israeli civilians but it is also oppressing its own people, using them as human shields (See video below) and as cannon fodder in order to achieve their goals. Israel is acting defensively because it is their right to do so, and freeing Gaza from the tyranny of this terrorist organization is in line with their objective.

The reality is that everyone seems to focus on the plight of those in Gaza. However, nobody seems to care about the facts. Yes, it is awful that civilians are dying, but they are dying in the numbers that they are because of Hamas. To me, if you have not been in the military, have not been in a conflict, or have no idea about strategy then you really have no right to criticize, as any military strategist will tell you that Israel is doing a brilliant job at reducing the civilian casualties. But again, no one considers that fact.

Why do I consider the global outcry shameful? Simply, the amount of global outcry in the form of Pro-Palestinian, or rather Anti-Israel rallies, is disgusting. Peaceful protests are fine, but unfortunately Anti-Israel rallies are turning out to be anything but peaceful. Normally peaceful countries like my own Canada are having problems with these violent rallies from Calgary to Toronto, much to the disgust of other Canadians.

In France the protests got so bad and violent that France has BANNED Pro-Palestinian/Anti-Israel rallies or protests.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2697194/Outrage-France-country-world-ban-pro-Palestine-demos.html

In Denmark, there are shops that have posted signs saying “No Jews Allowed”. If you know anything about history, this is exactly the kind of behavior that led up to the Holocaust in WWII.

These events remind me a lot of Kristallnacht, or the Night of the Broken Glass. For those of you who do not know, It was November 9-10, 1938 where the German SA and civilians terrorized the Jewish populous of Germany and Austria. The results: Up to 100 Jews were killed on the spot and over 30,000 were arrested and taken to the infamous concentration camps where most of them died, or were forced into hard labour. (8)

I have always thought that WWIII will start somewhere in Europe because of Islamic extremism. If extraterrestrials were to look at history documents and then watch the current news, it is likely they may come to the same conclusion.

Extremism Is the Real Enemy

So who is the real enemy in all of this? The uneducated on either side will say Israel, or the Palestinians. In this case, and in reality, it is Hamas. Or more to the point, fundamental extremists. Extremism, no matter what the cause, is the real enemy of humanity of the 21st century. It does not matter if they are Muslim, Jewish, European, White, Black, Chinese or purple, extremism is a sickness that must be cured. It is often the complaint of many Muslims that they are always the ones labeled as terrorists and while it is discriminatory and wrong, I would like to question this complaint with some basic numbers.

Currently there are approximately 7.5 billion people on this planet or, to give you a better idea, 7,500,000,000. Of that number, 1.6 billion are Muslim. Yes, that’s right, the latest estimates are that of 1,600,000.000. That’s approximately 21% of the world’s population. In contrast, there are only about 13.5 million Jews in the world; that’s 13,500,000. This is a number of which still has not recovered from the Holocaust where, prior to it taking place, the Jewish population was an estimated 16,000,000.

For you more visual people, here  is a graph:

Population of world by religion comparison

Or, let’s think of this another way. If only 1% of Muslims globally are extremists or terrorists, that is still 16 million people. That is a number that is larger than the combined forces of the world’s 10 largest armies. Now again, in contrast, if only 1% of Jews are extremists (yes, there are Jewish extremists), that’s only 135,000.

speculative comparison of 1% of population

On top of that, Jewish extremists are relatively limited in region to Israel and perhaps New York or Los Angeles. While in comparison, Islamic extremism since 9/11 has become a global problem.

Don’t, get me wrong, I have many Muslims friends, and have never had a problem with most of them. But my question is, if these are the numbers that they are, where are the moderate Muslims in all of this? why are they silent? why are they not standing up against those who wish nothing more to cause death and destruction and give your people a bad name?

It would be a shame if global outcry against extremism turned against Muslims.

Conclusion

The Jewish saying “Never Again” is a reference to the Holocaust. It should not however, just be exclusive to Jews. Never Again should mean that no person, no matter their colour or nation, should ever again face such hate and genocide. Yet it seems people’s memories are short and history forever repeats itself. Since the Holocaust there have been numerous unanswered genocides from Kosovo to Sudan. Once again, like pre-WWII, the world seems to be going mad with an Anti-Semitic fever and to that of before Hitler started one of the most at destructive, devastating and horrific wars of the modern era.

To you I say, are you going to let history repeat itself, are you going to let extremists win? Or are you, the moderate masses, going to stand up and do what’s right no matter what your culture. As Edmund Burke once said: “All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.”

This is why Israel has the right to defend itself. This is why the world should be against Hamas, not Israel. This is why the global riots are disgusting and this is why you need to properly educate your children. And this is why Krav Maga was created. Remember that, at least for the Jews, Never Again means NEVER again and this should be the same for you…

 

Author: Jonathan Fader

 

1. Suicide Bombing as Strategy and Interaction: The Case of the Second Intifada Robert J. Brym and Bader Araj Page [1969] of 1969-1986

2. Ideological Change and Israel’s Disengagement from Gaza Jonathan Rynhold and Dov Waxman Page 11 of 11-37

3. Dershowitz, Alan (2003). The Case for Israel. Wiley. ISBN 0-471-46502-X.

4.  Power or Justice? Rule and Law in the Palestinian Authority Hillel Frisch and Menachem Hofnung Page 335 of 331-348

5. http://www.publicsafety.gc.ca/cnt/ntnl-scrt/cntr-trrrsm/lstd-ntts/crrnt-lstd-ntts-eng.aspx (Accessed 23-07-2014)

6. http://www.state.gov/j/ct/rls/other/des/123085.htm (Accessed 23-07-2014)

7. http://www.idfblog.com/facts-figures/rocket-attacks-toward-israel/ (Accessed 23-07-14)

8.  http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/323626/Kristallnacht (Accessed 23-07-1014)

 

Pat-Morita_(Karate_Kid)

If you asked me in high school if I would have my own Krav Maga studios I would have told you; “What have you been smoking?” (Remember I live in Vancouver).

In traditional martial arts the Sensei, Shihan etc… is God. You do what they tell you and do not ask questions. While this may work in some cultures it doesn’t work in all cultures.

Personally any time I walk into a dojo and I see this attitude towards the head sensei I usually don’t stay there long. Don’t ask me why, but it just creeps me out. Maybe it’s because I am Jewish and I was taught to always ask questions and not to follow blindly.

This mentality was certainly not lost from me being in the Israeli Defense Force. I can remember numerous times where I told my lieutenants to F*** off. To those of you who come from more traditional armies, this is unheard of. And no, I was not punished for saying such things; it was just the nature of things. I suspect this free thinking attitude is the reason that Israelis are so innovative in general. Why is this important? It is important because Krav Maga is from Israel and as such, the mentalities associated with it often follow suite.

For our students in our regular classes, this might explain why we are so casual. Neither myself nor Borhan like being put up on a pedestal like traditional instructors. We are simply there to teach you the knowledge we have. Though we are instructors, we ourselves are still young and we know that we have a lot to learn. While we expect a certain level of respect from our students we also consider our students our friends and teachers for so for many of our students have taught as just as much as we have taught them.

I would also like to point out that no instructor, no master, and no leader is infallible. At the end of the day we are all human and to put your instructors blindly on a pedestal without question may lead to disaster. I myself am not perfect, many of my students know I like to drink and have fun, and I am not ashamed of this. I am human, and I am what I am. Does this detract from who I am as a person and instructor? I don’t think so. I would rather my students and friends see me for who I am than to put on some false face like many of the people in power out there do. I would rather be judged for who I am than someone I am not.

Instructors or leaders that are ok with themselves being put up on the pedestal are often detached from reality. A famous internet example of this is below:

The video is fairly clear. It shows that this master has evidently created a cult-like aura around himself. His belief that he can control others without even touching them is not based on reality. For his belief to be valid it requires pure obedience from his students who play the role as the unquestioning student and perhaps have been brainwashed into believing their master has powers that do not really exist.

When the master faces reality, it is obvious he was not prepared, both physically and mentally.

Of course, I acknowledge that this is an extreme example. However, it serves the purpose of proving my point.

When I sit and reflect on the situation I have put myself in, one which I never expected to be in, I am in awe. Here I am, merely 26 years old, teaching people of all ages, some twice my age, and yet they still come back to learn what I have to offer. I find this both rewarding and crazy at the same time. I know for a fact that if you ask people I went to high school with if they thought this is where I would be now, I am sure they would give you looks of shock far greater than I could imagine.

Yet this is where I am, sitting on the edge of the pedestal. I have always considered myself someone who likes to operate behind the scene and yet here I am up front and center. Sometimes I wonder if perhaps I should just jump, but then I remember I have a responsibility to my friends and to my students to continue doing what I am doing.

I just want my students and myself to always remember, I am only human, I have messed up, I have flaws and I am not perfect. Please do not look at me as something I am not, and as long as we have that understanding, I wish to continue to teach you everything that I know, everything that I will know, and I hope that you can all do the same.

Humbly yours,

Written By: Jonathan Fader

So far, 2014 seems to be a year of injuries for me.  In January I broke my nose while sparring with a Muay Thai fighter, and on February 9th, the day of my birthday, I was rear-ended by a mini-van in an intersection.  As a 30 year old I fully understand how fragile the human body is, but as a fighter and Krav Maga instructor this was a very, very foreign idea.

Since my teenage years I knew I had incredible physical prowess and athletic abilities.  I competed in Judo and Tae Kwon Do at the Provincial level, and in my mid-20s I trained in Mixed Martial Arts at the professional level and competed in any national and international tournaments I could possibly enter.  While serving in the military I underwent tough physical training, ranging from marching in -40′ temperature for 20 km in Ontario to passing the fitness selection for a spec-op unit that specialized in field intelligence gathering and undercover work behind enemy lines.  I recovered from every injury with ease ranging from dislocating my shoulder to having a broken ear drum.  I felt that I was Apollo himself:  Strong, Athletic, Powerful and Indestructible.

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In Canada forces, you are huskies. ” Wolv “

Slowly, I realize how fragile our life and body can be.  In the world of Krav Maga, we learn to deal with the deadliest attacks from knife to firearms; any wrong move and we then go to see our creators instead of our loved ones. (or go directly to your next life depending on your belief.)

We train hard in Krav Maga but we do not want you to push to the limit that your body breaks, because your mind can always go further than your body.  A human’s mind is limitless yet the human body is very honest about its limitation. There are moments in life when we have to fight though the obstacles despite our pain and injuries, but everyone will be broken if we go to the extreme in every training session. You push it overboard too many times, and it will break. When you spar and do your conditioning, it is ok to stop and not participate for the right reason. Pain is good injury is bad, some pain are signals to prevent you from injuries some pain are just signal weakness leaving the body. Listen to your instructors. We can tell when you are pushing yourself too hard when you are not. We do not become Krav Maga instructor by just reading books, taking classes and write fancy articles. My Krav Maga mentor Avi Moyal once said Krav Maga is ” Experience + Science. ” What you are learning in the class of Urban Tactics Krav Maga is based upon knowledge, experience and medical bill. You are only human and don’t make the mistake I made.

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nose vs knee. Knee wins…………..this time

Written by: Borhan J

 

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Borhan’s Military Krav Maga Instructor Course

My time in Serbia must have been one of the most interesting and intense Krav Maga trainings I have ever experienced. I have always had strong interest in the military aspect of Krav Maga since I started my Krav Maga training in 2007 in Israel. Then, I was under the guidance of Master Zeev Cohen, one of the best Krav Maga instructors in Israel. The aggression and toughness in Zeev’s class left a strong impression on me. As I continued my Krav Maga training in North America and Asia, Krav Maga seemed to be less combative and aggressive. Almost all Krav Maga schools that I know now focus more on the self defense aspect, with very little focus on Krav Maga’s original purpose “ Contact Combat.” I decided to find the missing link between Imi’s original Krav Maga and today’s civilian Krav Maga. I enrolled myself in a military Krav Maga instructor course run by Krav Maga Global in Serbia. With a bit of nervousness, I arrived in Belgrade, Serbia. The last time I heard about this country, NATO ( including Canada ) was giving this city a new real-estate upgrade. The ruins of the bombings can still be seen in some parts of the city. Belgrade and its sub city Zeumn is a bit rundown. Though not the prettiest streets in Europe, the streets are always clean, and although the occupants are not the richest, they always carry themselves with pride.

I showed up three days prior to the actual course start. The course is 15 days for any military personnel with no prior Krav Maga experience and 10 days for Krav Maga instructors who already passed Krav Maga Global’s instructor course ( GIC ). I did my instructor course in 2008 and I desperately needed a refresher. The training took place in a police training base in the suburb called Zemun. My course consisted of 5 foreigners, 4 Serbian Emergency Response Team Police Officers and 6 local Serbian KMG instructors. Out of the 5 foreigners, we had a formal British Army Artillery Staff Sergeant, a Formal East German Paratrooper, one German and one UK KMG civilian instructors. Our Serbian KMG instructors groups consisted of three active Serbian Army soldiers, one fire marshal and one police officer. Knowing that I came from Canada and had done my service there, some of these Serbians jokingly said “Oh ! Canada, your country exported some special gifts along with America back in the day” Their tone seemed to be friendly…..at least for now.

The first five days of the course were conducted by KMG instructor Moran Laskow, who was a Krav Maga instructor during his service in the IDF and later served as a shooting instructor for Israel’s Military Industry. Moran is the perfect example of what a Krav Maga instructor ought to be; fit, keen, good looking, knowledgeable and personable. In fact, I believe there is a secret fan club for Moran within the Krav Maga community. In class, we each got issued an AK-47 ( Yugo Version ), a pistol, duty belt with holster, a helmet and a vest.

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Everyday from 8 am – 6 pm, we would be in the gym or range learning how to be proficient with our AK-47 S, with or without bullets. We practiced using our rifle as a cold weapon doing attacks such as Magazine thrust, Rifle Butt strike, and downward cut, etc, and to be able to do these attacks in different combinations. There is also a series of defenses against people trying to grab your weapon from the rear, front or side, or people swinging a stick at you from above, from the side or from underneath. We would practice theses techniques slowly in the air in the beginning and then later attack with all our might against a bag or each other. I can tell you that wielding a heavy AK-47 S for hours is a hard work out. If they were not prohibited in Canada I would create a work out called AK-47 Fit.

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During one of the mock attacks, I accidentally hit my partner Neja’s face with the foresight of my pistol. Blood poured out of his face and he needed several stitches to get the deep cut fixed up. I kind of felt bad after the instance especially since Neja is one of the toughest Serbian ERT members. After that the thought occurred to me that I am far too pretty to end up in a Serbian prison.

On top of using a rifle as a cold weapon, we also spent many hours learning basic shooting, reloading, tactical reloads, combat reloads and instinctive shooting with our rifles and pistols. My poor marksmanship earned me the nickname “Beneli.” I am pretty sure I did not earn it because of the damage I had done to the target but more to do with the grouping on my target. At the range, Moran pointed out that “We are Krav Maga instructors, not shooting instructors, and any Krav Maga training that might involve in shooting, it is best to have shooting instructor on the side for technical support and guidance.”  In military Krav Maga, we have many Krav Maga drills that combines the use of Krav Maga, shooting and tactical movements. Israelis believe that in modern CQB stoppage or reload leaves soldiers or police officers vulnerable, and trying to clear stoppage or reload within close range of an attacker is very unwise. The American Law Enforcement also concluded the same theory which is called the 21 Feet rule. Maron would put us through a lot of mock attacks in which we would have to decide to clear our weapon or strike our attackers with our weapons.

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I can tell you that even in an open gym with excellent lighting, having someone charging at you with full force will make reloading or clearing stoppage difficult to achieve. Later we would have multiple attackers with stick and knives and also receive surprise attacks with our eyes closed. Like Mike Tyson said, “Everyone has a plan before they get punched in the face.” In every drill, we relied solely on our training and instincts to survive. In one of the drills we called Zombie drill, four attackers with sticks, knives, pads and fists will attack you in slow speed. I tended to get paired up with those Serbian ERT members and the idea of slow speed usually does not register with them. I recall the stress was so overwhelming and tiring all I can do is simply raise my rifle to defend my head and run for my life.

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Other than rifle, we also received training on how to use a pistol as a striking method. Although a pistol is more within the realm of Law Enforcement, it is still not a bad idea to learn how to use a pistol in close range. When pistols were first introduced, they were designed for one hand usage only; however, in modern doctrine, most military and LE focus most pistol training with two hands in order to increase accuracy. Because of the possibility to deal with surprise attacks, in Krav Maga we tried to use one hand to operate the pistol in close range. This way, we could use the other hand to strike and block attacks from the enemies. Other than our free hand, we could also use the pistol to strike from above, right, downward, left ( turn the pistol 180 horizontally ), and front thrust. It is very important to know how to strike with a pistol. Swing it the wrong way, and you might disarm yourself. One of the course mates ERT member Constable A shared with us his personal experience about striking with a pistol.

Two armed robbers went into a shop and committed robbery.

Off duty officer Constable A was shopping with his girlfriend at the same store. After sending his girlfriend to safety, officer A announced to the robbers that he is a police officer, presented his duty pistol and demanded them to drop their weapons. The robbers refused and approach officer A with pistols. Officer A was afraid to shoot at the robbers worrying about collateral damage. After one of robbers was in close range with officer A he struck one of the robbers with the bottom of his pistol ( magazine ). When officer A strucks the robber, he accidentally discharge his firearm near the robber’s head. The robber ran off to the exit.

The 2nd robber approached officer A, officer A was worried to discharge his weapon again so he struck the robber with his left fist and the muzzle of his pistol. During the process, officer A’s index finger naturally grab the trigger of his pistol ( his natural reaction is to make a fist when he strike with his hand ) and he worried the firearm would go off at any moment.

One of the most tiring exercises we did throughout the course was a mixed obstacle course combined with Krav Maga. Doing military obstacle courses is hard enough on its own. Now we were combining it with people attacking after each stage. This brought it to the whole new level. However, just like real life, your enemies are not going to pick the time when you are fresh and energetic to attack you. Think about it! When would you choose to attack your opponents?

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The second part of the course was conducted by Eyal. It is a true privilege to meet Eyal, not to mention to train under him. After all, Eyal was responsible for creating IKMF ( International Krav Maga Federation ) and building the foundation of the modern day Krav Maga syllabus. Some would say that he is the main person who spread Krav Maga around the world. The man is a living library of Krav Maga. Physically, the course by now became less intensive compared to the first six days but mentally we were being challenged every single second. We were learning the proper procedure and methods on how to teach a military unit and how to conduct CQB Drills and live Shooting Drills with Krav Maga.

Most countries have their own CQB techniques ( Close Quarter Battle ) on how to clear a room, cut corners or enter a room. It is not our job as Krav Maga instructors to suggest to them how to conduct room clearing but we can add many scenarios that can enhance their ability in a close range situation. I have to say this was probably the most fun we had throughout the entire course,  because we are put everything we learnt together into practice it was a chance for us to create all kinds of mayhem to our fellow course mates.

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The students were separated into two groups. One group of people were the soldiers and the other group of people were the “enemy”. One by one we had to go inside the CQB Training house and complete a mission, and this was usually done after grueling and harsh physical Krav Maga exercises wearing full gear. After the physical exercise, I was tired and my adrenaline was as high as a kite. I burst into the door and those bastards even put traps above the door. After I got into the door, all kinds of situations came up. These situations ranged from preventing a suicide attack to full out knife attacks with numerous attackers. I literally had to put all my Krav Maga skills into use. Of course, payback is a bitch, and the other team did not like me at all when I played as a stick whaling maniac hidden inside a dust cover for their turn.

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Another exciting Krav Maga drill is combining tactical shooting with Krav Maga. Anyone can stand in a range and take a nice shot but let’s see how well one can control his or her breathing and still operate a rifle accordingly after a full-on Krav Maga fight. Again on the range, I proved that the nickname “Beneli” suits me very well. This drill showed the reality of shooting under stress. Anyone can get a good grouping sitting on the bench and taking his or her sweet time to pull the trigger but to shoot under pressure is a whole new different story. In order to run this drill safely and precisely, many details need to be taking care of. It is very likely to have disaster if one is not being safe or knowledgeable in both Krav Maga and shooting. You need at least one Krav Maga instructor and a shooting instructor to accompany each student during the whole course.

One of the shooting exercises we had was conducted by world renowned IPSC shooter, Major Ljubisa Momcilovic, who came in 8th in the IPSC European Championship ( Factory Division ). He is also a team member of CZ IPSC team. Other than his IPSC experience, Major Momcilovic also served many years in an elite close protection unit in Serbia Police and is an official shooting instructor for Serbian Police forces. Having worked in the firearm industry and attended numerous shooting courses in the military and civilian side, Mr. Momcilovic’s shooting and movements are probably one of the best, if not the best, I ever seen. Even with all these experiences, Major Momcilovic was very friendly and approachable. His lecture was straight to the point. Here are a few important points I took away from Major Momcilovic’s class.

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World Top shooter Major Momcilovic

  • A shooter who performs with 80% -90% accuracy on the range means he or she probably can only have 60% accuracy in real life under a real threat.
  • In real life shooting it is usually “ reaction of you“ after “ action of enemies. “
  • Find the Balance between Speed & Accuracy. Speed without accuracy is nothing, but accuracy without speed means you are dead.
  • There are all different theories on stance; waver, isolate, modified waver, no matter what stance you choose, your shooting stance should be a position in which you can stand on your feet for a long period of time and be comfortable.
  • There is no need to change your shooting position for accuracy shooting and combat shooting.
  •  Maximum Speed = how fast you can put your sight on target.

Prior to Major Momcilovic’s lecture, I had a very negative view on IPSC. I thought it was unrealistic in real life. Major Momcilovic points out that IPSC is an excellent shooting training. Shooting and tactics combined together produce a good soldier or police officer. In essence, shooting supports tactics.

The last couple of techniques we learned at the course were dealing with a terrorist holding a grenade. We had to quickly disarm the terrorist from all angles. For me, this was probably the hardest technique I had to master. Because with my tiny girly hands it was difficult for me to cover the terrorist’s hand with mine. Luckily, in a security team it is usually the big guy who does the disarming. The threat of a terrorist holding a grenade is very real. The recent terror attacks involving grenades are:

  •  Liege attack, Belgian: 13 December 13, 2011.
  •  Ram Janmabhoomi Attack, India: 05 July, 2005.
  •  Rome & Vienna Airport attack, Italy: 27 December, 1985.

Although dangerous, dealing with a hand grenade is not a death sentence. Unlike hand grenades with big explosions in movies, in real life hand grenades use fragments to kill, not explosions. There is a good chance for people around the hand grenade to survive if you can find a way to cover it in time. The latest British Victoria Cross Winner saved his mates this way by laying over a grenade with the small of his back.
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The second part of the course consisted of a lot of classroom lectures. We had more classes on Krav Maga theories and military organization structure. In general, Krav Maga is separated into Offensive Combat and Self Defense. The two portions have a very different approach when comes to dealing against threats. Offensive Combat means Maximum damage to the enemy in minimum time with minimum damage to yourself, yet Self Defense means not to get into a fight. Soldiers seek enemies ( danger ), civilians avoid enemies ( danger ).

In most civilian Krav Maga School they only focus on the Self Defense portion of Krav Maga because of legality issues. In combat, a soldier has to turn on his kill switch and fight like a lion within seconds. There is no personal hatred or anger involved when comes to killing your enemy: “A lion does not hate a lamb, a lion is just hungry”, and vice versa “ A soldier is just doing his job.” It is like the famous line in Full Metal Jacket when Joker graduated from boot camp: “Marine Corp does not need a robot, it needs a killer.“ Unlike most attacks in the civilian world, most attacks in battle are nothing personal. We try not to educate the civilians to act the same because that might get them in jail. After all, War is simple, civilian society is complex; a soldier doing the one thing in war can make him a hero, doing the exact same thing in peace time will get him in jail.

The Self Defense portion of Krav Maga came about when IDF paratroopers would punch MPs who tried to give them tickets for dress deficiency. A method of self defense is needed so those poor MPs do not get crushed like hamburger in front of those paratroopers. The Self Defense portion of Krav Maga really came to age during the Intifida (Palestinians uprising) – Israelis are facing more and more attacks ranging from stone, sticks, knives to guns from the Palestinian terrorists.

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Since the maturing of modern firearms, most military’s doctrine is about killing your enemy as far away as possible; the further the better. However, as warfare becomes more complex, soldiers have to operate in urban settings acting not just a warrior but sometimes police officers and diplomats. They have to be able to conduct peace keeping or humanitarian operation yet maintain their abilities to fight wars. If a soldier only has a hammer he can only solve problems by hitting really hard, but with Krav Maga he can solve problems with all kinds of tools. As many instances tell us, the need for a good hand-to-hand combat program is more dire every day.

It was a privilege for me to be able to enroll in Krav Maga Global’s Military Krav Maga instructor course in Serbia. Other than the instructors from Israeli HQ being one of the reasons, the course was so enjoyable because of our Serbian hosts. Serbians have the right Krav Maga mentality. They train hard but also technically. Very much like Middle East, the Balkan is a troubled region. I believe in some way many Serbians are training Krav Maga because they know they might have to use it one day to defend their loved one and home. After the course, I am a firm believer that Military Krav Maga is the missing link in today’s Krav Maga world. Anyone who wants to get the full picture of Krav Maga and become a complete Krav Maga fighter should attend this course.

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Written By: Borki Yoni

Edited By: Warren C & Jonathan F

Krav Maga Global: http://krav-maga.com/

Krav Maga Global Serbia: http://krav-maga.rs/

Major Momcilovic Tactical Training Agency: http://www.loadmakeready.com/