So as you may or may not know, I’ve had a few run-ins with Robert Farago and his Clan of carpet-bagging fools. If you aren’t familiar with all of this, loot at the left hand bar of this blog for that little search-box and just type in Farago, and have at it. Overall after seeing friends of mine slighted, read articles that were both anti-gun, and contrary to other articles written by the same author, seen blog content blatantly stolen, had my own blog content blatantly stolen, been lied to about the methods in which he stole the content, seen him host anti-gun trolls on his blog simply for traffic, and given their anti-gun and abusive behavior preferential treatment over rational pro-gun rebuttals to his lunacy, and of course actually meeting the man, shaking his hand, and rubbing elbows with him at the NRA conference (where I might add he lied to my face and was generally a slime ball, and misogynist). I’ve finally decided they’re a faction that is best ignored. His readership is not the same gun community who reads the respectable blogs out there, and while many industry giants have figured out his deplorable behavior, the gun community is too large to be a monolith, so TTAG is going nowhere. So yeah I haven’t read his site for years, and when I last saw him and his crew in Houston, I gave them a wide berth.
Let’s just say Robert Farago and everybody who works for him are terrible people.
Well there’s a new example. From Jason “Baldr” Kilgore of Cease Fire Oregon:
Well, a pro-gun group called “The Truth About Guns” decided to test this scenario. They recreated a mock-up of the Charlie Hebdo offices and took turns playing the two shooters and the office staff, armed with paintball gun versions of the firearms, except that they armed members of the office staff with concealed handguns. Apparently, they wanted to demonstrate what all those FOX pundits were claiming.
But, try as they might, over and over (12 times, in fact), the result was always the same: NO lives were saved.
…Hmmm. Funny, that. That might explain why no mass shooting in America has ever been stopped by an armed citizen who wasn’t law enforcement or security.
Essentially the TTAG crew did a re-creation of the ABC 20/20 show that we talked about here.
Now from Farago’s own site…no link because that’s how he rolls, so fair is fair, plus I’m just sick of this drama.
Keep in mind that this isn’t the final word yet. Robert’s desire was to re-create the Charlie Hebdo environment exactly, but with an added armed defender. Given the extremely short time frame in which we had to throw this thing together (24 hours), Patriot Protection in Plano, Texas did not have sufficient time to re-create the offices exactly and instead re-used their existing setup which was adequate for the test. Their configuration in the training area consisted of a hallway with six small rooms on either side and a larger room at the end of the hallway.
Volunteers were collected from the local area. A total of 26 volunteers and some paid staff participated in the event, although not all of them were able to go through the scenarios.
The rooms in the training area were populated with volunteers, one or two people to a room down the sides and four people in the room at the end. For scenario #1, the armed defender was positioned in the room at the end of the hall. For scenario #2, the defender was positioned in one of the rooms on the side of the hall.
Each defender was told that there were people in the adjacent rooms, and to act as they would normally. They were given no specific instructions about how to react. The defenders were armed with a GLOCK 17 converted for UTM man marker rounds holstered in a non-retention holster and a single 18 round magazine.
The two attackers were armed with AR-15 rifles converted to fire UTM man marker rounds and a few 30 round magazines. The attackers in this instance were highly trained individuals who were employed as instructors at Patriot Protection, and were similarly instructed to attack the office area as they normally would given their training.
Now that’s essentially what the news reports are saying, minus the rush-job initiated by Farago in order to get the most media hype. It goes on:
The biggest problem reported by the volunteers was that their masks were constantly fogging up. Given the cold nights in north Texas and the lack of heating in the training area, the required safety equipment became more of a burden than expected. Many volunteers complained that they were unable to see the attackers at all when they finally entered the room, and were forced to simply shoot in their general direction. Obviously in a real world situation fogged up face masks would not be an issue, so this is a problem that we experience trying to re-create the scenarios only and detracts from the applicability of the testing to real world scenarios.
Another problem was the use of a flashlight by one of the attackers. A flashlight was not included in the testing protocol, but according to reports from the volunteers one of the attackers used a flashlight to blind the defender in one or two scenarios. These tests deviated from the methodology and will be excluded from the final results.
The use of UTM’s man marker rounds was another problem. While they give a good indication of whether someone is hit or not, they do not accurately model the ability to incapacitate or kill someone. People who were hit multiple times continued shooting, despite being instructed to simply stop shooting and get down once hit. This posed a huge problem when trying to analyze the results.
The final problem was time. Robert insisted that we perform this test within 24 hours of having the idea in order to capture media attention, and that unfortunately meant that the methodology was rushed, the volunteer pool was small, and we did not have sufficient time on the day of the event to even run all of the volunteers who did manage to make it to the location. Due to the small sample size, it will unfortunately be impossible to draw any hard and fast conclusions from the testing. However, we can identify some areas for further investigation in a larger scale test with more time allotted.
Funny, NONE of that crap showed up in ANY of the media reports given. Essentially this was an exercise skewed in a situation where the defenders were in a no-win situation. While it looks like the terrorists had Intel on the building, in this case the “Terrorists” BUILT the building and were more intimately familiar with it. Further the terrorists in this attack were not on a suicide mission, they got in, killed their targets, got out, and fled, I assume hoping they could escape the country, before people with guns showed up. Last of course, the “Terrorists” cheated, by further blinding the already blinded, due to fogging masks, defenders with tactical lights the real terrorists didn’t have.
And of course people play games different than real-life, and solid hits don’t have any pain, or instinctual dread of having your body damaged by gunfire.
Also not from any of the reports:
Despite that “no win scenario” description, there were some notable minor victories for the defenders. From the footage available to me at this time, it appears that in the majority of the scenarios the defender is able to successfully kill one of the terrorists before they themselves are killed (the definition of “killed” is a hit on the attacker in a vital location before the attacker can fire back). While it might seem like another “no win” scenario, the fact remains that a single armed defender — even one with very little training — is able to successfully kill and stop at least one terrorist. The problem in this scenario is that there are two terrorists as attackers, and a single armed defender does not appear to be able to stop both of them.
Even when confronted with heavily armed and well trained attackers, a single armed defender is capable of stopping at least one of the attackers.
So this was a hack-job. Even right now at the time of this writing, TTAG has not finished analyzing the data given….but the reporters whom they invited to witness the drill have already written and published their report, with no claims that conclusions shouldn’t have been drawn before all the factors were looked at.
So effectively this was a publicity stunt with zero interest in the truth, or unbiased evaluation. TTAG may later come up with some story where they give an honest look at this very flawed drill, but the damage is already done, it’s not like the reporters are going to care about a story they already published on a week ago, nor is any reporter interested in printing a retraction for a story they wrote in good faith consulting “experts” who had no idea what really went down.
Now of course I’m not saying this is a total farce, the #1 way to survive a gunfight is to NOT get in a gunfight, and no matter your preparation or training, when bullets fly things go crazy. Certainly a coordinated team with military hardware against average people (even people with the “home court advantage”, and not wearing obstructive protective gear) are at a disadvantage.
Still one thing can be said, I would be surprised if we don’t find out the terrorists knew EXACTLY who was armed in that building the day they struck. It does beg the question on why attacks like this happen in OTHER countries, but NOT in the United States, and even when it is lone-wolf spree killers they always choose areas where lawful citizens are barred form carrying arms.
So yeah, spread the word about this story, and about what a bunch of unscrupulous jerks the TTAG are, I doubt it will make them go away, but it can’t hurt.