Surviving virtually any event largely comes down to resource availability, planning, groups and perhaps most critically thinking. Thinking is the one innate ability that separates humanity from the wild and, arguably, from other humans unable or unwilling to adjust to new events; history, particularly noted in war, is replete with such examples ranging from the macro level down to the individual. The ability to leverage thinking can compensate for a weakness in resource availability, planning and groups – such as cohesion of individuals in the group, its longevity and so on. The purpose of this article is to present information that you may think about in relation to your survival plans in the hope that you may think of a new or more effective way to ensure not only your survival in virtually any event but also those around you, whether that be family or a group coalesced around MAS (Mutually Assured Survival).
Over the past few decades, particularly with the evolution of technology and a drive to influence, monitor and control ever larger swaths of humanity, a new burden has been placed upon survivalists. That is, how to maintain that degree of independence which is the hallmark of what it means to be human; the anti-entropy of existence that drives us to create and evolve towards something better that elevates each of us individually and, by extension, humanity as a whole. In other words, collective independence. In reality this burden requires perhaps a way to apply new thought and action to the long-established basic, and old, tenants of survival; unless your entire existence is contained within the confines of an entirely artificial system, nature or natural law will – in the end – triumph. It may be argued that even in an entirely artificial system, independence is not only still possible – but inevitable for as long as humans possess what it means to be human and the artificial system itself must abide by the laws of nature for its own existence because that system cannot supersede the Kosmikí Alítheia (or cosmic truth). However, discussion of that inevitability is best suited for another time.
Unless a survivalist is more politically-natured and resource-heavy, the optimal time a survivalist will have to make a significant contribution to survival for one’s self and a community is when the existing social structure breaks down from a significant natural or un-natural event. In either event, one of the most common things that a survivalist will have in their immediate possession is a bug-out bag filled with the items that are needed for short-term survival in order to get him or her to their destination or a stash point where they can resupply and continue to their final destination.
Such a bag is likely to contain first aid, clothes, food / water, a camouflaged oversize space blanket, phone blocker and so on. In a short or even long-term breakdown of the locality you had called home, if you elect to “bug-out”, have you thought about the state of surveillance technology in your movement plan? The leadership in that locality, in most cases, will be benign to tracking non-violent movement over violent movement when a breakdown occurs. But it may be worth considering the possibility of a less benign force taking over the locality in cases where resources are no longer available to sustain them or the local population in a timely manner. In such a case, captured video footage may be used to attempt to locate persons of interest or resources they may be linked to. In short, do you have a mapped route that avoids or minimizes exposure to your destination? Hand in hand with that, do you have a local (or perhaps state-wide) map with GPS coordinates to points of interest to aid in your navigation and movement? The author is not inferring you jot down GPS coordinates to your destination but, rather, GPS coordinates of general points of interest that you can use to guide movement to your destination.
Longer-term, it may be good to have a state map where you have traveled to each corner of the state to write down the GPS coordinates. From those points you can easily draw out a much higher resolution GPS overlay if the need arises, such as may be needed if you needed to evacuate from your destination and likewise you have a GPS device that operates independently of an internet connection. Even with a full down-grid or break-down of a locality or society, GPS will continue to function unless the GPS satellites themselves are neutralized.
The reason an oversized space blanket (or tent) was mentioned is to reduce your footprint when you are stationary behind a metallic or thermal barrier. Given the general availability of relatively low cost thermal scopes in the commercial marketplace it’s likely that others – less organized than you – will be scavenging for resources whether that be animals in the wild or purposefully looking for other people they may be able to get “trinkets” from, for themselves or to use in trade or barter. The phone blocker was also mentioned because, unless the entire power-grid you move within is down for an extended period of time, your phone – and you by extension – will be trackable; thus, before you begin a journey putting a phone in “airplane” mode and placing it inside of an effective Faraday bag may be critical.
It is generally known that, if you are not close enough to your destination to reach it by foot, you will likely have an alternate method of movement such as a vehicle. Movement by vehicle has largely the same considerations as movement by foot with the exception that versatility of movement is constrained to roads or navigable pathways as a trade-off for ease of movement and speed. Aside from considering reasonably reliable and “conflict-free” refueling points for your vehicle and surveillance opportunities as is also the case with moving by foot, a big advantage of a vehicle is that you can use it as a semi-permanent, protective structure from which to live out of. Depending on your “bug-out” budget, a vehicle could be outfitted with solar panels to charge batteries to provide you with electricity so that you could power or recharge a variety of devices like a GPS, radio, UV water sterilizer, and in some cases 1,000 BTU portable air conditioners and low wattage ceramic heaters.
Once at your destination, it is assumed that it would be a defendable, well-stocked, concealed and have a plant-based renewable food source; animals may be good to have but may not be ideal in situations where growing food to feed them with, noise, penning or other considerations could place you at risk of unwanted discovery. In the short-term one of your defense strategies may include firearms which makes perfect sense as many people are likely to have firearms and a small surplus of ammunition. But, unless you have the natural resources to make more ammunition as it is depleted over the long-term, a different tool for defense may be required.
Something that may be worth thinking of, if survival turned into a long-term endeavor, is to acquire a stand-off and hunting weapon like a compound bow or crossbow with a surplus of arrows, tips and parts for repair like bow strings; you may also be able to more readily make replacement parts (such as entrails for bowstrings) yourself and re-use arrows. Over the past decade, significant technological advances in bows have taken place that put some of them on-par with the accuracy of traditional rifles at 100 yards with hundreds of foot pounds of penetration energy per inch. Likewise, with a bow, muzzle flash and thunderous sound can be avoided with little negative impact other than the prolonged time it takes to knock and ready another arrow.
With regard to your destination, in many cases you may have purchased the property in a remote location with a pre-existing structure that will be known by locals or have been recorded (such as the case with a deed or zoning records). In such a case, structures and destination will not be concealed since it has a paper or electronic record. It may be worth considering building a different structure elsewhere that relies on terrain and natural concealment with which to be a long-term survival destination not in close proximity to a road, waterway, and has no easily identifiable man-made perimeter like a fence. It is not to say you could not create a “man-made” perimeter like small hills, hedgerows or trees to assist with concealment as long as it does not “look” man-made and arouse suspicion or curiosity.
Restoration of Community
Up to this point, discussion has been around the general goals of both the traditional survivalist and the honeypot survivalist. In the context of this article, the two diverge once the final destination point has been reached and ultimately how the survivors of the broader community are dealt with. A traditional survivalist may likely prefer seclusion with themselves or the group they may be a part of – and there is nothing necessarily wrong with that. The honeypot survivalist, on the other hand, will actively work over time to restore the community by using what is available to them. With regard to those pre-existing structures you may have on the property, consider how you may use them rather than abandon them precisely because it is likely they will be known to varying degrees depending on local zoning requirements, records, local “people” knowledge likely from proximity to roads, waterways, and so on. Ergo, pre-existing structures can serve as a very valuable asset for the honeypot survivalist that assists with MAS on a broader scale.
If so inclined, such structures could be used as a snare or trap for roving scavengers – though longevity of the structures from violent contact would likely be short as well as being costly to you or members of your trusted group. A different way with which to use them is to consider using one or more structures as a rally point for others in your trusted group that may not be privy to your concealed structure. Such a rally point may also serve as a shelter in the event someone in your trusted group (say, on an adjacent property) were forced out of their own shelter and you did not have adequate space in your concealed structure to house them; in a longer-term societal break-down that becomes a higher likelihood as what remains of the general populace fans out for resources in order to survive likely spearheaded by gangs.
A Rally Point
Another thing to consider with those structures is using them as a “fleeting secrecy” community gathering point. Along the lines of a rally point for your trusted group where you may exchange ideas, information, products or services for mutual benefit and support, those structures may also be known by some in the general community (outside of your trusted group) where they can go in order to give and receive support.
Extending a hand to some in the general community you have identified may seem counter-intuitive in a survival scenario at first and, depending on your judgment of those few from “the outside” with regard to their personality and survival motives, may carry risk for you and the trusted group you are in. However, nothing persists that is small which cannot grow and support itself long-term in nature. To wit, the honeypot survivalist will patiently and methodically identify members of the general community to expose the purpose of the structures to and invite them in, with a mutually beneficial trade of some type. The expectation is that, by relinquishing a degree of secrecy, then over time an increasing portion of the general community will adopt a common vision, gain trust in each other and have a degree of normalcy restored more broadly across the community. Along with this growth, intelligence (knowledge of what is going on both in the community and what may be transpiring beyond its boundaries) will increase. By this time, depending on your skill in hiding your concealed structure, your concealed structure will have become known…but by then – and with a supportive and growing community around you with a common vision – it won’t matter anymore.