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Dear Sir,

My name is Sergeant First Class Calvin Buchan Retention Non-Commissioned Officer with the North Carolina Army National Guard located in the Eastern part of North Carolina. I want to thank you so much for your support and donations that you have provided for the Soldiers.

Sincerely,

SFC Calvin B


Dave,

I just returned from op northern edge in alaska and worked with psu311 and 313. 311 had adopted the design and several members were wearing it. 313 wanted to get in on the action. Its just outstanding to see the design being used for the reasons it was made for. thank you again for all you have done.

Eric


Hi Special Forces Gear!

My order has arrived!

Thank you very much for providing me with such an outstanding high Quality Gear!
I'm looking forward to my next order!

Regards!

Stephan


Awesome!

I am glad to read articles like this written by a man of God! Keep up the good work! All men of any race and color must read this article by Rev. Rako. This is very enlightening!

Jaime

Featured Shirt
Operation Enduring Freedom - #A01103

Operation Enduring Freedom - A01103

Seizing upon a power vacuum after the Soviets withdrew from Afghanistan after their invasion, the Taliban ruled with an iron fist from 1996-2001. Their extreme interpretation of Islamic law prompted them to ban music, television, sports, and dancing, oppress women and children, and enforce harsh judicial penalties. Amputation was an accepted form of punishment for stealing, and public executions could often be seen at the Kabul football stadium. Women's rights groups around the world cried often and loudly as the Taliban banned women from appearing in public or holding many jobs outside the home. They drew further criticism when they destroyed the Buddhas of Bamiyan, historical statues nearly 2,000 years old, because the Buddhas were considered idols.

On Sunday October 7, 2001, American and British forces began an aerial bombing campaign targeting Taliban forces and al-Qaeda.

Featured Shirt
You Can Stand Behind Our Troops... Or Step In Front!

You Can Stand Behind Our Troops... Or Step In Front! - A02645

Supporting our troops is not something I do when its popular or when the government tells me I should. Its not something I feel called to do. Its not something I think about daily.

I do not wear yellow ribbons and there are no flags or bumper stickers on my vehicle.

But I support our troops every day, without having to think about it. To me, there is no other way to live.

Quoted from milspouse.com

Featured Shirt
US No Surrender

US No Surrender - A02448

"In the beginning of a change, the patriot is a brave and scarce man, hated and scorned. When the cause succeeds, however, the timid join him...for then it costs nothing to be a patriot."
-Mark Twain

Like then, they now continue to be the same brave, hated and scarce men Samuel Clemmens wrote about. Who, fed up with the Bravo Sierra double speak rhetoric the U.S feds feed the U.S. citizen about border security during this very different kind of war; they have laid it all on the line to hold the last line in the sand that protects us from the "those thems" who may only have harm in mind for this greatest republic on earth.

Featured Shirt
E Pluribus Unum

E Pluribus Unum - A02619

"E Pluribus Unum" was one of the first mottos adopted by the United States government. E Pluribus Unum was adopted to appear on the Great Seal of the United States in 1782.

Translated from Latin, it most closely means "Out of many, (is) One." or "From many, (comes) One."

"E Pluribus Unum" is often poorly translated to mean "One out of many" or "One from many." However, the position of the pronoun unum points to the aforementioned meaning, which refers to the unity of the disparate states of the United States as well as (in modern times) the notion that the nation is a melting pot of peoples.

Featured Products
Image of GI survival knife

GI survival knife - #SFG0263

GI Trip Wire, 160 ft (40 ft each color)

A handy survival knife that was often carried by soldiers in Vietnam, because is one tough and dependable knife.

This Survival Knife is still used by USAF aircrews, as well as US Army personnel.

Featured Products
Image of Special OPs Survival Necklace

Special OPs Survival Necklace - #SFG-SOSN

Searching for the ideal lightweight survival kit? Well look no further, and if you don't think this is the best lightweight kit on the market...

Are you a Hunter? Camper? Hiker? Cross-country skier? Snowmobiler? Kayaker? Mountain biker? Freelance journalist? Foreign aid worker? Do you fly an airplane? Go sailing or boating? Do you travel often to far away exotic places? Spend a lot of time off the road in remote areas? Are you in the military, or are you planning on going in the military?

Well if you answered "Yes" to any of these questions, then you need a survival kit!

Great items for under $10!
Featured Products
Image of OD Super Whistle 3 in 1 Whistle

OD Super Whistle 3 in 1 Whistle - #R9401

Our OD super whistle is a three in one tool!

It comes with a compass, a thermometer, a whistle, and lanyard. It is a great item for those of you who like to combine your equipment to cut down on weight.

Featured Products
Image of Commando Wire Saw

Commando Wire Saw - #AT4547

The Commando Saw is constructed of stainless steel, and it is the strongest and most effective wire saw available.

In a survival situation sticks or limbs can be attached to the ends of the saw to make a bow saw.

Featured Products
Image of Waterproof Match Container

Waterproof Match Container - #AT4586

The container is OD plastic, has a rubber gasket seal on the lid and it includes striking flint on the bottom of the container.

The flint on the bottom of the Waterproof Match Container will give you an alternate method of fire starting, so you can save the matches for emergencies.

Featured Products
Image of Sun Thermo-o-Comp

Sun Thermo-o-Comp - #R332

Small, only 2" long, it is small enough to fit on a zipper tab. The Sun Thremo-o-Comp is liquid filled and has a luminous dial.

It is both a compass and a thermometer, and comes with a wind chill chart on the back.

A Message from Dave

The History and Traditions of Skull Art

Within the Military of the USA, our warriors have incorporated SKULL ART into a brand of brash, self - assured art work that is typical of the American spirit of the Frontier and High seas adventure which dates back to American colonial times.


82nd Airborne Regiment New Unit Skull wings

Soldiers and Marines, Submariners and Sailors, Aviators and Pilots have created and continue to create and paint insignias often without official authorization, but part of a unit's esprit - de - corps.

Nowhere is skull art more prevalent than in the U.S. Special operations community and skull arts originals and lasting legacy to it, which this document will chiefly address. It is representative of the Esprit de Corps... Skull's brandished via patch or paper send a message right away, "death to our enemies and we fear not death," all in one tidy little package without any verbalization. It was understood universally - whether the fight is in on the High Seas of Early Colonial America; deep within Japanese occupied China or in the present day middle east.

Ironically it was the pre colonial American Privateers who first modified their privateer Ensigns from 13 stars and stripes (representing the 13 early 1700's American Colonies) to fly a Skull and Cross Bones Art for the Americas. A Privateer is a sailor with a "letter of marquee" from a government, which "allows" the sailor to plunder any ship of a given enemy nation. Technically a privateer was a self employed soldier of fortune paid only by what he plundered from an enemy and thus, supposed to be above being tried for piracy. Most often, privateers were a higher class of Sailor with either naval or maritime service under his belt and came from good families. Privateers include Buccaneers (originally a term for those privateers who fought against the Spanish, later a general term for pirates of the Atlantic, specifically the Caribbean. The Buccaneers were first hunters of pigs and cattle on the island of Hispaniola - and French Corsairs a term used for Christian and Muslim privateers in the Mediterranean between the 16th and 19th centuries. The Christian Corsairs were known as the Maltese corsairs and they took their orders from the Knights of St. John to attack the Turks and counter Barbary corsairs from North African states often "hired" by Muslim nations to attack Christian Corsair ships.


Emanuel Wynne French Corsair (Privateer) First to Fly and Skull and Bones under Government Authority

Emanuel Wynne was a French privateer/Corsair/pirate circa 1700. Wynne is said to have been the first to fly a black flag with a front facing skull with crossed bones. The hour glass may have been a warning that "time was running out" for the victim.

Early First evidence of Skull art Used by US forces commences as far back as 1692 with Colonial American Privateer Thomas Tew who was a licensed Privateersman from Rhode Island. His flag did not have a skull or even a bone, just an arm wielding a cutlass or scimitar. Tew like many privateers simply retained their old (Jolly Roger) symbols, although black became the favored color.


Thomas Tew Ensign "Jack" - Colonial Americas FIRST Privateer Warrior

Sir Thomas Tew seemed to think it more polite to suggest violence in his flag rather than death, and took the image of the sword rather than skull or bones. The message however was no less clear regarding the fate of any who opposed his advance. The images on a pirate flag were designed to indicate a certain message. The skull was a sign of death, but a skeleton, often with horns, indicated a tormented death. A dart or spear was used to indicate a violent death in contrast to the bleeding heart denoting a slow and painful death. The hourglass gave a threat that time was running out or that capture was inevitable. A raised fist or hand clutching a dagger or cutlass was to indicate a general willingness to kill. This was the image Tew chose. In the event that a ship was particularly evasive, or a pirate was particularly brutal, a red flag was raised to indicate that no quarter would be given (no lives would be spared) once the ship was captured. Tew's Ensign though not with Skull art was as recognizable on the High Seas as any earlier or later Pirates "Jolly Roger."

Though most people knew that Tew was a pirate, little is known about him prior to 1692 when he arrived in Bermuda and purchased a share in the sloop "Amenity". From there, he got the additional owners of the sloop interested in taking on a privateering commission from Bermuda Governor Isaac Richier. Together with the Royal African Company, they were to attack the French factory at Goori, in Gambia. Tew and his crew instead chose to sail off to the Red Sea where they attacked an Indian ship which they found to be very profitable Tew settled in Rhode Island, but eventually was lured back to piracy. For when the outlets for legitimate privateering dried up at the end of the War of the Spanish Succession in 1714, many privateers turned to piracy. He took command of a pirate ship and sailed off to the Red Sea. He was killed in June of 1695 while attacking a large ship belonging to the Great Mogul of India.


Christopher Moody's Blood Red "Pretty Red"

Jolly Roger means "Pretty Red" in French. This was taken to describe the blood red flags flown by particularly harsh pirates. The primary use of such a banner was to strike fear into the hearts of the crew under pirate attack. Some reports say the Jolly Roger was run up first, to signify an offer of quarter. If the victim refused to surrender, the plain red flag was flown to show the offer had been withdrawn and no mercy could be expected.


Colonial Black and Yellow Privateer Jack Texas Stars and Stripes Privateer Ensign

Red continued to be associated with privateering until the 19th century. The American 18th century privateering color of a red flag overlaid with white horizontal stripes provided the inspiration for part of the existing flag of the USA.


Jack Rackham Skull and Crossed cutlass the basis for much of the US elite warrior skull art

And eventually, one piratical / privateer inspiration would affect several "flamboyant" or rather deadly and cunning American warrior outfits during World War II, the Cold War and into our present day U.S.A. elite operational units. His name was Calico Jack Rackham and he was a flamboyant pirate and no ordinary jack would have suited his purpose. Rackham devised a jack which consisted of a skull with crossed cutlasses on a black background.

US Marine Corps - Raider Battalions


2nd Raider Pacific calling card logo

During World War II the USMC implemented its Raider Battalions which were commando - trained and airborne - qualified men conducting distinguished yet particularly to the enemy - "harsh" operations. Their original 2nd Raider Battalion Patch /Death Card was originally a take on the Calico Jack Rackham motif: Black Skull against two Scimitar Swords against a red field symbolizing blood or perhaps the "privateer" red flag. Perhaps, the Raiders were suggesting the Marine-Raiders as a legacy to the effective small unit raids by Marines under William Eaton in Tripoli in 1804 as Well as Rackham himself? Or perhaps, 2nd Battalion Raiders emblazoned the skull and scimitars against a red field to let the enemy know that U.S. Marine Raiders, like privateers long before them and the enemies now in their sights, were a truly ruthless bunch of honorable cut throats, as their lighting fast, elite commando tactics and gallantry under fire was by then proving across the Pacific Theater for all U.S forces to learn from.

Regardless, by early 1943 the Marines Corps agreed on a Raider Patch featuring a White Skull against a red and blue field with stars (Like the 704th Marine Raider parachute battalion) would be a better patriotic choice for the ruthlessness of the Raider Battalions.

US Navy Aviation and Spec Ops


Marine Raiders

One of the most successful Navy Aviation squadrons of WW II: The Skull & Crossbones Squadron: VF - 17 flying Navy Corsairs were known as the Skull and Crossbones squadron and "Blackburn's Irregulars" - having adopted the old pirate's ensign of the Jolly Roger as the squadron insignia.


VF-17 Jolly Roger Cowl

The Jolly Rogers have always displayed some of the most recognizable squadron markings in the world: sinister white skull - and - crossbones on all - black tails, with gold bands wrapped around the tip of the tail fins, and black bands with gold V's run down the sides of the forward fuselage (these were from the Vagabonds days). The squadron's prized mascot is a set of skull and crossbones enclosed in a glass encasement. "Passing of the bones" from the outgoing skipper to the incoming skipper is a time - honored Jolly Rogers tradition. The bones are supposedly the remains of Ensign Jack Ernie of VF - 17. Ernie was killed during the Okinawa invasion in World War II, as his flaming aircraft spiraled towards earth; he made one last radio transmission asked "to be remembered with the skull - and - crossbones". According to the story, Ernie's family later presented the squadron with the set of skull and crossbones and asked the squadron to fulfill Ernie's last wish.

Amphibious Group Roger

In 1942, Along with the Marine Raiders, Skull art made it's perhaps, 1st usage, as part of a unique, off the radar, official joint yet limited Navy/Marine hybrid command way deep in China; to parallel the limited number of operations the secret espionage outfit and predecessor to Army Special Forces OSS, was beginning to run there. The secret organization was beyond so secret and as obscure and known to limited outsiders as called SACO, the Sino-American Cooperative Organization (SACO); with a Naval activities called Naval Group, China. And with an even catchier code designation of "AMPHIBIOUS GROUP ROGER" (AGR), with a how, what and who they came to be are as cool as its art work


Fort Pierce Scouts and Raiders Sign

At Ft Pierce the modified Jolly Roger was adapted as the training Camps Official Insignia. According to one veteran AGR commando the AGR Insignia and skull art was thought to be first created at Camp Knox, though the AGR Patch has elements like the Scouts and Raiders sign at the Ft. Pierce training area which used the modified.. Privateer Ensign flag of Thomas Tew (previously acknowledged as the first historical American warrior to use Skull art in the field of battle ) AGR's Thomas Tew Ensign, 'has been reversed perhaps symbolically to show the Japanese, that like Thomas Tew fighting Renegade traders, the AGR sailors would use ruthless tactics in fighting the Japanese. For in fact, AGR commandos like privateersman before them were (by Admiral Kings "Secret Verbal Orders" complimenting Captain Miles "official Naval Group Advisor duties") in effect granting a mid 20th century military version of the privateers "letters of marquee and reprisal" of days gone by (an official status to disrupt and take on the enemy as a small but effective force. AGR's artwork added the traditional US Flag Snake of "Don't Tread on Me" wrapping around Tew's Jolly Roger arm art (symbolizing AGR being Sailors and Marines coming from the sea and from the U.S.A, fighting war in ways you, the enemy, may not like to get to know)! It is on a flag pole with a 2nd skull atop it showing the ruthlessness of the men and their mission of war. Then the patch adds its unique to AGR elements: three lightning bolts symbolizing the air, land and sea component to them. The strong arm and hand holding up the flag out of the fire shows that as U.S. people at war this unit is made from war, for war for war, to support our allies the Nationalist Chinese against Jap aggression. This is all set against a Blue sky symbolizing hope And Finally, the word ROGER designates the code units name, which, presumably, is the origin of the name Roger. The patch is fully embroidered on what appears to be a portion of a khaki shirt.


Navy Group China Amphibious Group Roger

Code Designated SACO- NAVAL GROUP CHINA - "AMPHIBIOUS GROUP ROGER" (AGR), AGR were at least 150 of a 750 man Scout and Raiders hodge-podge of Army, Navy, Marines and a few Coastguardsmen force authorized for SACO to be part of a total compliment of 5,000 Navy Group Sailors and Marines supporting and accompanying SACO Operations against the Japanese. It was the product of Cmdr. Milton E. Miles an officer with extensive China service who was given secret verbal orders by Chief of Naval Operations Admiral King to "to do everything possible to harass the Japanese in China." According to Dr. O. P. Fitzgerald of the Naval Historical Center AGRs ".guerillas killed more Japanese and destroyed more Japanese material with a smaller expenditure of men and supplies than any other force in the Far East [during World War Two]."By any measure, Miles succeeded in carrying out Admiral King's orders. (One key AGR figure was the key American figure, from World War ll who besides being the most decorated combat swimmer of the war and synonymous within U.S. Navy Commando and combat swimming operations; would later rise to become the key figure to ensure land and sea forces would retain combat swimming. Captain Phil Bucklew, USN (ret.) veteran of almost every major allied amphibious landing operation in North Africa and Europe and two times Navy Cross winner was one of the Key leaders in AGR's China Coastal Recon and Direct action Ops.) AGR continued to operate until 1946 when Navy Group China disbanded to ease the U.S. out of the now heated Chinese civil war. Naval Group China did training guerillas and intelligence groups, and established weather and radio intercept stations and preempted those planned amphibious landings. In much the way the Army Special Forces would 20 years later carry out in Vietnam. AGR personnel are also forerunners of the few long term unconventional amphibious operations Navy SEALs have carried out in their history.

U.S. Military Special Operations: Pre and Vietnam Period

But it was during the 1950'- 1960's when Skull art really took off Elite Marines just crave "ole Roger." From the Cold War era into present day U.S. Marine Air/Ground Task Force, there exists two separate recon units. Basic training paths for Marines in both units are similar. More advanced training focuses on a platoon's likely missions while deployed, so training individual and unit training paths diverge as a deployment nears. The Marines Amphibious Reconnaissance School in Coronado is the first step to putting the amphibian into Amphibious Reconnaissance Marines. Their unit insignia is a Marines Kabar fighting knife and Inflatable boat paddle in front of Marine Gold Jump wings and behind a Roger's skull.


Amphibious Recon Skull Paddle Wings and Kabar Insignia

From training, when the Marines Ground Combat Element commander has a platoon of Recon Marines in his support. This platoon focuses on the Ground forces area of interest. This platoon is commonly referred to as the "Battalion" or sometimes "Division" recon platoon, as their parent command is the Marine Division. 1st Battalion Marines follow skull art used during world war two Raiders battalions who like 1st battalion are pacific based, and use the diamond shaped version of it with "s their motto of "Swift Silent-Deadly " around the skull and cross bones.

The MAGTF commander also has a platoon of Recon Marines to focus on the MAGTF (Force) area of interest. They are normally the ones tasked with the "special operations" missions which draw the imagination of Recon hopefuls. They also retain their mission of general reconnaissance support to the force commander. This platoon is commonly referred to as the "Force" recon platoon as their parent command is the Marine Expeditionary Force. Their Skull art "Recon Jack", shows how they utilize small boat handling (the paddle again), Closed and Open Circuit SCUBA (the frogman), Airborne insertion (Gold Jump Wings) and CQB training. They took modifying Calico Jack Rackham one step further than there Raider forefathers, by creating a in the late 1950's early 60's.


Marine Recon Jack Camo

In September 1962, United States Special Forces, Vietnam (Provisional) was formed from members of the First Group, stationed on Okinawa, and the Fifth and Seventh Groups from Fort Bragg, North Carolina. The soldiers, operating in small units, created many patch designs which were manufactured locally and in many cases handmade. The first insignia, of course, was the beret flash, which combined the yellow from the first group, black from the Fifth, and red from the Seventh and incorporated them with a bend with bendlets that represented the flag of the Republic of Vietnam. This flash, designed by Colonel George Morton, eventually became the insignia of the Fifth Special Forces Group. Popular among the recon teams known as "Mike Force," which is the universal corruption of "Mobile Strike Force," was the use of state names, some of which appear here.


Special Forces Mike Force C 3 Challenge Coin

As state names were used up, names of snakes (for example, the Adder, Anaconda, and Cobra) became popular. The motto "We Kill for Peace" was almost universally used by these units. The collector will find that many of the MACV - SOG insignia can be found in hand - sewn and machine - sewn versions and in many variants. This is due to the fact that many of the insignia were remade "in country" for new arrivals or new recon team members. It is interesting to note that the Green Berets in many cases wore their patches inside the Green Beret. It was placed there in keeping with the covert nature of their missions.

Today's Special Operations Units


SF PRU Beret Headliner

USAF 436 AW Special Operations C-5 Galaxy

Since Vietnam, Army Air Force STS units; Marines and Navy Submariners SEAL teams have all used the skull or a skull and cross bones as part of their individual unit's heraldry. Several Intelligence units in both Army and USN use cloaked skulls - monks with daggers - in their designs.


USS Alexander Hamilton SSBN617 a

Army SF ODA's have numerous skull art designs starting in the 1970s. In Afghanistan ODA 772 uses climbing gear and skis against a skull to depict the mountainous and snowy environ they often fight in.


ODA 772

Army Ranger Companies and individual Platoons have used them also.


Mess with the Best, Die like the Rest (1970's)

Navy SEAL teams beginning with there truly hush-hush' SEAL Team-Six redoux known as "DEVELOPMENT GROUP" ended up creating a challenge coin which has elements of how they fight: Viking like, Indian like, a Scottish lion and ruthlessly like pirates they borrowed from


SEAL Dev Group Coin

Those SEALs deployed into the Middle East after 9-11 adopted Calico Jack Rackham's original Skull and Crossed swords on a Black field rectangle and Velcro-ed them on to their Nomex flight suits as than ID of vengeance for the enemy to recognize

While still other SEAL units deployed in Iraq have adopted the and Movie Logo " The Punisher" Skull and much like Army SF units did in Vietnam/ post Vietnam period, for their individual platoonsIncorporated it into their Trident Design and let is stand alone



And as an ironic twist on how units /services borrow from each other the new 2006 USMC Special Forces Unit DET ONE, incorporates the USMC Raider Skull art Recon Diver; the Raiders World War Two Camellias Dagger, a Army SF lightning bolt and the closed circuit re-breather wearing gold skull tip in its new heraldry.

As elite warriors, part of their duty is to effect maximum fear as that is a big part of winning. Skull art statements represent the warrior's soul and go back thousands of years. Wearing a patch of this kind makes a big statement about who you are to those around you.

For other US Military Law enforcement and First Responder privateer, Buccaneer Corsair Pirate and general Skull art Insignias Please refer to: http://larryvoyer.com/Piratical/patches/patches.htm

Have a great Fourth of July and never forget that no matter who or what imagery surrounds them all American warriors deserve the freedom to express our fierce and noble nature in these great and truly American ways.

Hoo-yah,
 Dave and "The Privateer Waterman"

Voice of the Soldier

Army Strong. All the way!

The kid took shelter behind the best thing he could find. The boy knows who will not kill him but will save him.

An amazing and touching set of photos! Look at the soldier standing upright and alert while everyone else runs!

Some news photos are so rich in symbolism they're almost like Renaissance paintings in how much they communicate.

Such a photo appeared on the front page of the New York Times’ national edition, a picture of the scene after a bombing in Baghdad yesterday.

Adding to the chaos of the bombing which killed at least 21 people and injured at least 66 was a shooter, maybe targeting people in the crowd.

Amid all the Iraqis who are running from the gunfire was a U.S. soldier, standing tall, perhaps looking in the direction of the gunshots, not apparently looking for cover. An Iraqi boy seeks shelter behind the soldier, a member of the 82nd Airborne Division.

The first picture shows it all. The kid's face shows he is scared to death, and is running to the safest spot he can find: this soldier who stands between him and danger.

Word of Truth
The Word of Truth - Alive and Powerful

The Word of Truth

By Rev G.J. Rako
LTC (Ret)
IN USAR

Freedom Is Not Free

As we celebrate the Fourth of July commemorating the birth of this great nation and our personal and national freedom it is only appropriate to reflect on those who sacrificed their wealth, their property, their families, and their lives to provide our freedom. Ordinary men accomplished extraordinary things on our behalf. This is our heritage. In every war “all sacrificed some, some sacrificed all” in securing the freedom and subsequent prosperity of the U.S.A. from 1776 down to the present. Freedom is not free, those brave souls who fought and sometimes died on battlefields in this country and all over the world purchased our freedom with their blood. The celebration of 4 July is the recognition of their sacrifice and the knowledge that their sacrifice is what has paid for our magnificent freedom. The symbols of our freedom are the uniforms of the soldier, sailor, airman, marine, and police officer. The various services provide freedom through military victory, and the police officer protects our privacy, property, and life from criminals.

Today many people are ignorant of these sacrifices and the fact that the military purchased our freedom on battlefields all over the world. These ignorant people are willing to trade their freedom for security. When a people trade freedom for security they will have neither. Those who rule will reward them with slavery. The reason our founding fathers added the second amendment to the constitution was to protect us from the government. The founding fathers did not trust the government because they knew the Biblical doctrine of the total depravity of man. Absolute power corrupts absolutely. The more power we give to government the more freedom we lose. The constant and continual erosion of our freedoms are the result of the peoples’ desire to be secure instead of free.

We are becoming a fascist state. When industry colludes with government to take advantage of the people, tyranny rules, freedoms are lost, and those in government and industry become elitist and the people become subjects. Subjects are slaves. This is why we fought the first war for independence because we grew weary of being subjects. We may well have to fight another one. Each of you can cite many examples of this collusion and the successive loss of freedom. There is no longer a conservative party in this country. They have been swallowed up into big government and are consumed with power and money lust. Freedom is our heritage and freedom has become an annoyance to those who rule over us. Where are those like Patrick Henry who cried, “Give me liberty, or give me death”? You are being taxed out of existence. You are no longer free to accumulate wealth. An elitist government is systematically confiscating your wealth from you to line their pockets and spend your tax dollars on programs, with which you disagree.

Many people think the answer is involvement in politics. They have become obsessed with electing this candidate or that one. Politics cannot save this country. The Word of God is always the answer. Patriotism is a wonderful thing. Gratitude to those who provided our freedom and recalling to mind their sacrifices is an expression of patriotism. True freedom comes from an understanding of the scripture. We are commanded as Christians to ...grow in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord and savior Jesus Christ. (II Peter 3:18) The Lord Himself said, “If you live in my Word, then you are truly disciples (students) of Mine; and you shall know the truth and the truth will make you free.” (John 8:31) Then in John 8:36; He says, “Therefore, if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed.” Only God can give this supernatural freedom to you. It includes freedom from fear, guilt, worry, anxiety, and shame (all of which are sins). Can you imagine being free from these things? Everyone from time to time fears something, is worried, anxious, succumbs to guilt or a guilt complex. However, it does not have to be this way. The Word of God circulating in your soul is your defense against these attacks.

What can we do to protect the freedoms we have left in this country and even reclaim those lost?

(Eph 4:13) Until we all attain to the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a mature man, to the measure of the stature, which belongs to the fullness of Christ. The most patriotic thing you can do, or be, is to attain maturity through the knowledge of the Son of God to the fullness of Christ. God will bless you and your nation because of your spiritual growth. You may not be the hero type or perhaps you are disabled or too old for military service. You are never too old or disabled to be an invisible hero and bring great blessing from God upon your nation. God is faithful and He will never suffer the righteous to be moved. It is for freedom that Christ has set us free; therefore keep standing fast and do not become entangled again in the yoke of slavery. (Gal 5:1) At the moment of faith alone in Christ alone, we were set free from sin and death (Acts 13:39, Rom 6:7, 18, 22, 8:2,). We were at that time also given the divine operating assets to be free from human good, and evil. Christians are now citizens of heaven. We remain on this earth after salvation to represent Jesus Christ, (eternal God) to a lost and dying world. One way we accomplish this mission is to tell others about Christ, and the free gift of eternal life that He has provided for all mankind.

This Fourth of July as you celebrate our freedom, remember those that sacrificed by spilling their blood on battlefields. They are the ones that purchased the freedom of this great nation. Remember also the blood that was shed for you almost two thousand years ago by the creator of the universe. Jesus Christ purchased you out of the slave market of sin by His efficacious, substitutionary spiritual death on the cross. In this great selfless act, he provided a freedom for you above all others.

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Mounts with ALICE clip web bars to belt or pack.

Converts with removable waist belt into a fanny pack for day trips.

Cover is made of 1000 denier Cordura and the pack is 400 denier Cordura cloth, #8 zippers, strength rated nylon webbing, National Molding plastic buckles, and stitched with parachute weight thread.

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Shirt Embroidery

ANNOUNCING EMBROIDERING - Special Offer

If either the following two designs are ordered on a polo shirt, Our introductory offer saves you $5.00 - Now only $25.00 !!!


E02419 - Special Forces Airborne Embroidered Clothing

Special Forces Airborne Embroidery

The Special Forces was established out of several special operations units that were active during World War II. Its lineage comes from the 1st Special Service Force (Devil's Brigade) as well as from operational detachments of the Office of Strategic Services.

Special Forces were among the first U.S. troops committed to Vietnam. The 5th Special Forces Group (Airborne) earned seventeen Congressional Medals of Honor in Vietnam, making it the most prominently decorated unit for its size in that conflict.

The Special Forces Airborne badge can be ordered on your choice of mens and womens clothing, or head gear.

Click to buy this design on a shirt, hat, and more! >>


E02415 - Ranger 75 Rgt Embroidered Clothing

Ranger 75 Rgt Embroidered Logo

The 75th Ranger Regiment - also known as the United States Army Rangers - is an elite light infantry special operations force of the United States Army Special Operations Command (USASOC); with headquarters in Fort Benning, Georgia. The Regiment is a flexible, highly-trained and rapidly deployable light infantry force with specialized skills that enable them to be employed against a variety of conventional and special operations targets.

The Ranger coat of arms can be ordered on your choice of mens and womens clothing, or head gear.

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T Shirt Feature

A01103 - Operation Enduring Freedom

Operation Enduring Freedom

Seizing upon a power vacuum after the Soviets withdrew from Afghanistan after their invasion, the Taliban ruled with an iron fist from 1996-2001. Their extreme interpretation of Islamic law prompted them to ban music, television, sports, and dancing, oppress women and children, and enforce harsh judicial penalties. Amputation was an accepted form of punishment for stealing, and public executions could often be seen at the Kabul football stadium. Women's rights groups around the world cried often and loudly as the Taliban banned women from appearing in public or holding many jobs outside the home. They drew further criticism when they destroyed the Buddhas of Bamiyan, historical statues nearly 2,000 years old, because the Buddhas were considered idols.

On Sunday October 7, 2001, American and British forces began an aerial bombing campaign targeting Taliban forces and al-Qaeda.

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A02645 - You Can Stand Behind Our Troops... Or Step In Front!

You Can Stand Behind Our Troops... Or Step In Front!

Supporting our troops is not something I do when its popular or when the government tells me I should. Its not something I feel called to do. Its not something I think about daily.

I do not wear yellow ribbons and there are no flags or bumper stickers on my vehicle.

But I support our troops every day, without having to think about it. To me, there is no other way to live.

Quoted from milspouse.com

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A02448 - US No Surrender

US No Surrender

"In the beginning of a change, the patriot is a brave and scarce man, hated and scorned. When the cause succeeds, however, the timid join him...for then it costs nothing to be a patriot."
-Mark Twain

Like then, they now continue to be the same brave, hated and scarce men Samuel Clemmens wrote about. Who, fed up with the Bravo Sierra double speak rhetoric the U.S feds feed the U.S. citizen about border security during this very different kind of war; they have laid it all on the line to hold the last line in the sand that protects us from the "those thems" who may only have harm in mind for this greatest republic on earth.

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A02619 - E Pluribus Unum

E Pluribus Unum

"E Pluribus Unum" was one of the first mottos adopted by the United States government. E Pluribus Unum was adopted to appear on the Great Seal of the United States in 1782.

Translated from Latin, it most closely means "Out of many, (is) One." or "From many, (comes) One."

"E Pluribus Unum" is often poorly translated to mean "One out of many" or "One from many." However, the position of the pronoun unum points to the aforementioned meaning, which refers to the unity of the disparate states of the United States as well as (in modern times) the notion that the nation is a melting pot of peoples.

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Clearance Items

Black / Blue Reversible ParaBlanket

ParaBlanket
Black / Blue Reversible

This is the most useful item you could ever own. Soldiers use their poncho liners as a blanket roll instead of, or in addition to, their sleeping bags. thus providing extra warmth and enabling them to survive in conditions that others could not.

Our ParaBlanket is based on the design of the poncho liner used by the elite fighting Forces. Special Forces founder MAJ Dave Thomas spent 265 days of one year in a variety of climates... from the jungle to the desert to snow-covered mountains; without a sleeping bag, only his poncho liner ket him alive.

Our version is even better. The ParaBlanket is light-weight, constructed of ripstop nylon parachute fabric that holds in heat and resists tears. It's batting acts like pillows of air to insulate from the elements.

The ParaBlanket is handy when camping, mountain-climbing, traveling, boating, hiking, going to the beach, or in the car.

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Quotes & Jokes

Yesterday, the greatest question was decided which ever was debated in America; and a greater perhaps never was, nor will be, decided among men. A resolution was passed without one dissenting colony, that those United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent States."
John Adams Letter to Mrs. Adams, July 3, 1776


"In the beginning, all the world was America."
John Locke, 17th Century


All we have of freedom, all we use or know -
This our fathers bought for us long and long ago.
Rudyard Kipling, The Old Issue, 1899


Where liberty dwells, there is my country.
Benjamin Franklin


Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom, must, like men, undergo the fatigue of supporting it.
Freedom is never free.
Author Unknown


"If we do not make common cause to save the good old ship of the Union on this voyage, nobody will have a chance to pilot her on another voyage."
Abraham Lincoln
Address, Cleveland, Ohio February 15, 1861


"...Enough cannot be said in the praise of these [Coast Guard] men and the remainder of the group which joined on 13 January, for the spirit in which they took up their new assignment and the cooperation and loyalty that they gave us. Their lot was not an easy one, but their previous training proved invaluable. They were engaged in the infiltration of agents where the existence of the enemy was known and in working their way many miles into enemy lines through mangrove swamps under enemy outposts, and dodging enemy M.Ls. We can be thankful that no men were lost through enemy action."
LT John Babb, Chief Maritime Unit, OSS India, Burma Theater. July 1945. "Burma War Diary."


TO FIND US YOU HAVE TO BE SMART...
TO CATCH US YOU HAVE TO BE QUICK...
TO BEAT US, (YOU'VE GOT TO BE KIDDING!)
Navy SEAL addage

Obituaries

Special Forces Soldier killed in Iraq

FORT BRAGG, N.C. (USASOC News Service, July 2, 2007) — A U.S. Army Special Forces Soldier died June 30 from wounds sustained while conducting combat operations in Baghdad, Iraq.

Staff Sgt. Robb L. Rolfing, 29, a Special Forces engineer sergeant, was killed by small arms fire.

Read More Here

Special Forces Soldier killed in Iraq

FORT BRAGG, N.C. (USASOC News Service, June 28, 2007) — An Army Green Beret died June 26, 2007 from wounds sustained while conducting combat operations outside Diwaniyah, Iraq.

Sgt. 1st Class Nathan L. Winder, 32, a Special Forces medic, was killed by small arms fire while assisting another U.S. Army element as a member of a U.S. Special Forces Quick Reaction Force.

Read More Here

Special Forces Soldier dies in Afghanistan

FORT BRAGG, N.C. (USASOC News Service, June 16, 2007) — An Army Special Forces Soldier died June 15 of wounds sustained from enemy small arms fire during combat operations in the Paktika Province, near Shkin, Afghanistan.

Master Sgt. Arthur L. Lilley, 35, a Special Forces Operational Detachment-Alpha team sergeant assigned to 2nd Battalion, 7th Special Forces Group (Airborne) here was deployed in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.

Read More Here

Night Stalker hangar named in honor of ‘Turbine 33’ crew

By Kimberly T. Laudano
160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment Public Affairs

HUNTER ARMY AIRFIELD, Ga. (USASOC News Service, June 8, 2007) – A Hunter Army Airfield hangar has a new name honoring the memory of an eight-person Night Stalker crew who died in combat on June 28, 2005.

The 3rd Battalion, 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (Airborne) hangar, formerly known as Building 7902, is now named “Turbine 33” after the aircraft crew’s call sign. It was formally dedicated in a ceremony at Hunter Army Airfield, Ga., on June 7.

Read More Here
World News - Knowing is Half the Battle!

A war hero from Huntsville rues a decision made in Afghanistan

By FRITZ LANHAM
Copyright 2007 Houston Chronicle

 

War forces terrible decisions on young men. No one knows that better than Marcus Luttrell.

In June 2005, on a barren mountain high in the Taliban-infested Hindu Kush, Luttrell and three fellow Navy SEALs came together to talk. Their mission to locate and possibly take out an important Taliban leader hiding in the Afghan village below had just been compromised. Three goatherds, one a boy of about 14, had blundered onto their position. Sitting against a log under the watchful eyes of their captors, the Afghans clearly weren't happy to see the Americans. On the other hand, they were unarmed, technically civilians.

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Ex-Marine teaches pickpocket a lesson

From the Associated Press

 

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. - Bill Barnes says he was scratching off a losing $2 lottery ticket inside a gas station when he felt a hand slip into his front-left pants pocket, where he had $300 in cash.

He immediately grabbed the person's wrist with his left hand and started throwing punches with his right, landing six or seven blows before a store manager intervened.

"I guess he thought I was an easy mark," Barnes, 72, told The Grand Rapids Press for a story Tuesday.

He's anything but an easy mark: Barnes served in the Marines, was an accomplished Golden Gloves boxer and retired after 20 years as an iron worker.

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House rejects cuts to Army school -- formerly called the School of the Americas.

By BEN EVANS, Associated Press Writer

 

WASHINGTON - Congress has turned back the latest attempt to cut funding for an Army school that trains military officers from Latin America and has a tainted past.

Just before midnight Thursday, the House voted 214-203 against a bid to eliminate the money used for foreign military officers to attend the controversial Army facility at Fort Benning, formerly called the School of the Americas.

The amendment, sponsored by Rep. James McGovern, D-Mass., is similar to one that the school's critics have tried to pass for years. It failed 218-188 in a House vote last year.

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Navy Takes Aim at Roadside Bombs

From the Associated Press

 

ABOARD THE USS NIMITZ IN THE GULF - A secret aircraft that debuted in Vietnam and usually protects U.S. fighter jets is getting a new type of task over Iraq - trying to stop the scourge of roadside bombs by jamming ground signals from mobile phones and garage door openers.

The EA-6B Prowler is thought to be one of the most effective U.S. weapons against the bombs, the biggest killer of American service members in Iraq. But no one can be sure: Even supporters say its effectiveness is hard to measure.

The aircraft debuted at the tail end of Vietnam and was used in Kosovo and the 1991 Gulf War, escorting U.S. attack jets while jamming hostile radars, air defense batteries and military radios aimed at them.

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'EFPs' a big threat to U.S. forces in Iraq

By Julian E. Barnes, Times Staff Writer

BAGHDAD — U.S. troops working the streets of the capital fear one Iraqi weapon more than others — a copper-plated explosive that can penetrate armor and has proved devastating to Humvees and even capable of severely damaging tanks.

The power of what the military calls an EFP — for explosively formed penetrator, or projectile — to spray molten metal balls that punch through the armor on vehicles has some American troops rethinking their tactics. They are asking whether the U.S. should give up its reliance on making constant improvements to vehicle defenses.

Instead, these troops think, it is time to leave the armor behind — and get out and walk.

"In our area, the biggest threat for us is EFPs. When you are in the vehicles, you are a big target," said Army Staff Sgt. Cavin Moskwa, 33, of Hawaii, who patrols Baghdad's Zafraniya neighborhood with the Bravo Battery of the 2nd Battalion, 17th Field Artillery Regiment. "But when you are dismounted … you are a lot safer."

Read More >>
Tactical Tips

Me and my M-14

Link to Source

June 7, 2007

By Eric Daniel

Ok, this story takes a while, so bare with me.

I was mobilized for OIF III on Veteran’s Day (go figure), November 11th, 2004.  Two days later I was at Ft. Bliss going through 30 days of accelerated training to prepare me for deployment.  As part of that training program I was issued an M-16A2 from the unit to which I was going to be assigned (which was, at that time, embarking for Kuwait.)  Upon inspection, I determined that the rifle’s front sight post was bent, and that the weapon was deadlined.  I brought this to the attention of the Major distributing the weapons (out of the back of a black Suburban, no less) and asked if I might get a replacement.

"Sorry Sergeant, no can do. All these weapons are getting issued tonight, and there aren’t enough to go around. You’ll just have to make do."

Fair enough, I said, and moved out smartly.  The next day, out on the zero range, I explained the situation to the range safety who said, "No problem, we can fix that right now" and he whipped out his Gerber-tool and proceeded to straighten the bent post.

Ping -- There went the post, snapped in half.

"Oh well, nothing to be done about it now. You’ll have to get it fixed when you get to your unit in Kuwait."

Thirty days later I was stepping off the bus in Kuwait, armed with an un-zeroed and un-serviceable M-16, trying to find out my unit of assignment.  Eventually I found my First Sergeant, who directed me to the Supply Sergeant, who told me everything had already gone north into Iraq, and I’d have to get the sight fixed there.  In addition, all available ammunition had been issued and I would have to wait till I got to Iraq to draw my basic load.

Five days later I was stepping off a Chinook in the dead of night armed with five duffel bags and an un-zeroed, un-serviceable, and un-loaded M-16.  Three days after that I found myself attached to the ING (Iraqi National Guard) training program.

Here’s where my luck finally took pity on me.  While going through the supply room looking for things to steal for the ING, I saw a number of M-14s piled in a corner collecting dust.  I asked the Supply Sgt. if I could sign one out, since it appeared to me that they weren’t doing much good there on the floor.  He asked me if I’d ever qualified on one before, "oh sure, lots of times" (in a previous life maybe…) and then signed over one rifle, one scope, a scope mount, and one magazine.

"That’s all we have", he said.  No manuals, no parts, no nothing.  I was going to have to figure everything out on my own.

The first issue was the incompatibility between the scope mount and the rings that came with the scope.  The scope, a Leupold Mk IV 4.5 – 14 M1 LR/T using Leupold’s QRW detachable rings, was not resting properly on the supplied scope mount, a Springfield Armory Gen. III mount.

"It won’t work" was the reply I got via e-mail from Leupold on the subject.  The SA mount is not to MIL-STD-1913 standard, they said.  I needed to either get a standard pica tinny mount, or get SA rings.

I opted to get a new mount.  The mount I chose was the A.R.M.S. #18 M-21/M-14 scope mount.  In addition, I purchased an A.R.M.S. #19 Throw lever QD mount (for the Leupold scope) and an A.R.M.S. #20 for an AN/PVS-4 night sight.

With my rifle-mount-scope issued resolved, my next task was to get ballistic data (dope) on the various bullets at my disposal, namely M80 Ball (146 gr FMJ), M852 (168 gr Match) M118 (173 gr Match) and M118LR (175 gr Match.)  Searching the internet provided me with enough suspect information (what?!? doubt the internet?!? heretical, I know…) that I decided I needed an authoritative source for ballistic data.

Enter the Army’s Marksmanship Unit (USAMU) at Ft. Benning, GA.  I e-mailed them regarding my needs, as well as describing the equipment I was using. Their response was thorough and quick. They not only gave me ballistic tables for all the ammunition I requested, but they broke it down by drop (in inches) and in "clicks", for both the M1 series of scopes (.25 MOA adjustments) and the M3 scopes (1 MOA adjustments.) Their data was spot on and saved me hours of trial and error effort. I cannot say enough about the support they offered.

To round out my M-14 kit I ordered an additional 5 magazines (USGI original manufacture $30 each, new), an M-14 "dash ten" operators manual as well as the "dash twenty-three" parts manual, cartridge extractor, gas plug wrench, and an M-14 lube kit.

Finally, after a month or so of exchanging e-mails with companies all over the U.S. I had the mounts I needed, the rings I needed, the ballistic data I needed and the bullets I needed.  I was officially in business.

Lessons learned

To get "my" M-14 operational required about $700 on my part and a month of e-mails and internet searches.  Once I started taking the M-14 on missions, I began to make notes on where I could improve my original setup.

Stock: The rifle came with a standard wood stock.  While this was all good and well, it was also bone dry, and in need of touching up.  A search in-country produced no linseed oil (you’d be surprised how many folk have no idea what "boiled linseed oil" is) so I had to have my mother send me a quart.  An alternative to wood, though, is getting a synthetic stock.  While there are a number of stock manufacturers out there (I myself purchased an M3A stock from McMillan Brothers ) what you have to be aware of is whether the stock you buy is set up for an M-14 reciever or the Springfield Armory M1A reciever (M-14 receivers have a semi - full auto selector switch which has been deactivated, but still projects from the receiver, whereas the M1A receiver lacks this and mounts flush in the stock.)  Either of the receivers will go into an "M-14" stock, but the M-14 reciever will not go into an M1A stock without carving out a notch for the defunct selector switch.

Furthermore, stocks come in two basic styles; drop in, and bedded.  Drop in stocks are ready as is. You drop in the receiver and you’re in business.  Bedded stocks require the receiver be "bedded" to the stock, which generally involves a gunsmith drilling mounting holes in the reciever and fitting a pair of mounting pins.  Bedding a rifle stock is most definitely not a do it yourself job.  If you don’t know what your doing you can get yourself killed.  If, however, you have the time, resources, and permission from your food chain to get your M-14 "bedded" it will be the better for it.

Scope mount: As I said, my original mount was the A.R.M.S. #18.  While this mount did what I asked of it, the one issue I did have with it was occasional ejection failures (the spent casing would get hung up in the chamber because of the narrow opening between the chamber and the bottom of the scope mount.)  Looking to correct this issue (jams are a bad thing, after all) I went looking for a different mount.  What I settled on was the Smith Enterprise, Inc. M-14 mount. This mount can trace its lineage back to the original Brookfield Precision Tool mounts manufactured for the M-25 sniper rifle.  Since going to the SEI mount I haven’t experienced a single jam. In addition, I also picked up an extended bolt stop release, which basically makes it easier to manipulate the bolt stop while wearing gloves.

Bullet drop compensators (BDC): While the data provided by the USAMU was spot on, it was still a lot of data to remember, and considering that I carried several types of ammunition on me at any given time, referring to index cards in a firefight wasn’t a viable option.  My solution was to get a retractable ballistics chart (RBC) from Leupold.  The RBC fits on the scope, where it's out of the way, and contains a self retracting tape upon which you can write down ballistic data. When in doubt, I need only pull out the tape and confirm my settings.

Another option recently offered by Leupold, is custom etched bullet drop compensators (BDC.)  The BDC differs from the standard windage knobs in that they are custom built to your rifle and ammunition and are graduated by range.  What this means is that with a BDC you don’t need to count "clicks" when applying windage, you just rotate the BDC windage knob to the appropriate range and you’re set. This is also a lifesaver when it comes to re-setting your scope after making several range adjustments. I haven’t gone this route yet, but if ever I get tapped for deployment again, I will probably have some built (just in case.)


A Lesson in Translation

Lt. John Booth (USCG OSS Operative), CO OSS MU OSG-2 recalls a moment as one of Americas 1st clandestine Combat Swimmers on a mission up a Burmese Chong (River) one dark and enemy filled night in early 1945, a night he believed he was on top of his game by memorizing a phrase in Burmese which went something like: Where are the Japs!? How many are there? What kind of weapons do they have?

So on that dark, quiet night, Booths canoe comes up alongside a Burmese dugout canoe. Deftly, Booth snaps his .45 up against the temple of the poor bugger in the canoe pulling him close, and mutters the lines he had prepared to thoughtfully.

Without hesitation, the poor bastard rattles of a fountain of data In Burmese. Leaving Booth scratching at his head.

The moral of this tale?

Booth wrote a concise report of the incident 67 years later and hopes that as Special Forces Warriors go to learn a language.. They actually learn to understand it He advises that in a tactical situation it is critical to know not only how to extract data from the enemy, but to also be able to understand what your informants is saying back to you!

Special Forces Gear (800) 260-4127