Economic Collapse of Argentina
Life in Argentina after the Economic Collapse.
First hand tale of how the AUTHOR could have prepared better.

"My brother visited Argentina. The first week, he got sick, some kind of
strong flu, even though climate isnít that cold and he took care of
himself. Without a doubt he got sick because there are lots of new
viruses in my country that canít be found in 1st world countries. The
misery and famine led him to a situation where, even though you have
food, shelter and health care, most of others donít, and therefore they
get sick and spread the diseases all over the region.

What got me started on this post is the fact that I actually saw this
coming, and posted on the subject here at Frugalís, months before the
new viruses spread over the country and the news started talking about
this new, health emergency, which proves that talking, thinking and
sharing ideas with like minded people (you guys), does help to see
things coming and prepare for them with enough time. So I started
thinking about several issues, what I learned (either the hard way or
thanks to this forum) after all these years of living in a collapsed
country that is trying to get out an economical disaster and everything
that comes along with it.

Though my English is limited, I hope Iím able to transmit the main ideas
and concepts, giving you a better image of what you may have to deal
with some day, if the economy collapses in your country. Here is what I
have so far:

URBAN OR COUNTRY? Someone once asked me how did those that live in the
country fare. If they were better off than city dwellers. As always
there are no simple answers. Wish I could say country good, city bad,
but I canít. Because if I have to be completely honest, and I intend to
be so, there are some issues that have to be analyzed, specially
security. Of course that those that live in the country and have some
land and animals were better prepared food-wise. No need to have several
acres full of crops. A few fruit trees, some animals, such as chickens,
cows and rabbits, and a small orchard was enough to be light years ahead
of those in the cities. Chickens, eggs and rabbits would provide the
proteins, a cow or two for milk and cheese, some vegetables and fruit
plants covered the vegetable diet, and some eggs or a rabbit could be
traded for flower to make bread and pasta or sugar and salt. Of course
that there are exceptions. For example, some provinces up north have
desert climate, and it almost never rains. It is almost impossible to
live of the land, and animals require food and water you have to buy.
Those guys had it bad, no wonder the northern provinces suffer the most
in my country. Those that live in cities, well they have to manage as
they can. Since food prices went up about %200-%300. People would cut
expenses wherever they could so they could buy food. Some ate whatever
they could, they hunted birds or ate possums and hares. Others
starved. When it comes to food, cities suck in a crisis. It is usually
the lack of food or the impossibility to acquire it that starts the
rioting and looting when T.S.H.T.F. When it comes to security things get
even more complicated. Forget about shooting those that mean you harm
from 300 yards away.. Leave that notion to armchair
commandos and 12 year old kids that pretend to be grown ups on the
internet. Some facts: 1)Those that want to harm you/steal from you donít
come with a pirate flag waving over their heads. 2) Neither do they
start shooting at you 200 yards away. 3) They wont come riding loud
bikes or dressed with their orange, convict just escaped from prison
jump suits, so that you can identify them the better. Nor do they all
wear chains around their necks and leather jackets. If I had a dollar
for each time a person that got robbed told me ďThey looked like NORMAL
people, dressed better than we areĒ, honestly, I would have enough money
for a nice gun. There are exceptions, but donít expect them to dress
like in the movies. 4)A man with a wife and two or three kids canít set
up a watch. I donít care if you are SEAL, SWAT or John Freaking Rambo,
no 6th sense is going to tell you that there is a guy pointing a gun at
your back when you are trying to fix the water pump that just broke, or
carrying a big heavy bag of dried beans you bought that morning. The
best alarm system anyone can have in a farm are dogs. But dogs can get
killed and poisoned. A friend of mine had all four dogs poisoned on his
farm one night, they all died. After all these years I learned that even
though the person that lives out in the country is safer when it comes
to small time robberies, that same person is more exposed to extremely
violent home robberies. Criminals know that they are isolated and their
feeling of invulnerability is boosted. When they assault a country home
or farm, they will usually stay there for hours or days torturing the
owners. I heard it all: women and children getting raped, people tied to
the beds and tortured with electricity, beatings, burned with acetylene
torches. Big cities arenít much safer for the survivalist that decides
to stay in the city. He will have to face express kidnappings,
robberies, and pretty much risking getting shot for whatís in his
pockets or even his clothes. So, where to go? The concrete jungle is
dangerous and so is living away from it all, on your own. The solution
is to stay away from the cities but in groups, either by living in a
small town-community or sub division, or if you have friends or family
that think as you do, form your own small community. Some may think that
having neighbors within ďshoutingĒ distance means loosing your privacy
and freedom, but itís a price that you have to pay if you want to have
someone to help you if you ever need it. To those that believe that they
will never need help from anyone because they will always have their
rifle at hand, checking the horizon with their scope every five minutes
and a first aid kit on their back packs at all timesÖ. Grow up.

SERVICES

Whatever sort of scenario you are dealing with, services are more than
likely to either suffer in quality or disappear all together. Think
ahead of time, analyze possible SHTF scenarios and which service should
be affected by it in your area. Think about the most likely scenario but
also think outside the box. Whatís more likely? A tornado? But a
terrorist attack isnít as crazy as you though it would be a few years
ago, isnít it? Also analyze the consequences of those services going
down. If there is no power then you need to do something about all that
meat you have in the fridge, you can dry it or can it. Think about the
supplies you would need for these tasks before you actually need them.
You have a complete guide on how to prepare the meat on you computerÖ
how will you get it out of there if there is no power? Print everything
that you consider important.

WATER

No one can last too long without water. The urban survivalist may find
that the water is of poor quality, in which case he can make good use of
a water filter, or that there is no water available at all. When this
happens, a large city were millions live will run out of bottled water
within minutes. In my case, tap water isnít very good. I can see black
little particles and some other stuff that looks like dead algae. Taste
isnít that bad. Not good but I know that there are parts of the country
where it is much worse. To be honest, a high percentage of the country
has no potable water at all. If you can build a well, do so, set it as
your top of the list priority as a survivalist. Water comes before
firearms, medicines and even food. Save as much water as you can. Use
plastic bottles, refill soda bottles and place them in a cool place,
preferably inside a black garbage bag to protect it from sun light. The
water will pick some plastic taste after a few months, but water that
tastes a little like plastic is far way better than no water at all.
What ever the kind of SHTF scenario you are dealing with, water will
suffer. In my case the economical crash created problems with the water
company, that reduces the maintenance and quality in order to reduce
costs and keep their income in spite of the high prices they have to pay
for supplies and equipment, most of which comes from abroad, and after
the 2001 crash, costs 3 times more. As always, the little guy gets to
pay for it. Same would go for floods or chemical or biological attacks.
Water requires delicate care and it will suffer when the SHTF in one way
or another. In this case, when you still have tap water, a quality
filter is in order, as well as a pump if you can have one. A manual pump
would be ideal as well if possible. Estimate that you need a
approximately a gallon per person per day. Try to have at least two-four
weeks worth of water. More would be preferable.

POWER I spent WAY to much time without power for my own taste. Power has
always been a problem in my country, even before the 2001 crisis. The
real problem starts when you spend more than just a few hours without
light. Just after the SHTF in 2001 half the country went without power
for 3 days. Buenos Aires was one big dark grave. People got caught on
elevators, food rot, hospitals that only had a few hours worth of fuel
for their generators ran out of power. Without power, days get to be a
lot shorter. Once the sun sets there is not much you can do. I read
under candle light and flashlight light and your head starts to hurt
after a while. You can work around the house a little bit but only as
long as you donít need power tools. Crime also increases once the lights
go out, so whenever you have to go somewhere in a black out, carry the
flashlight on one hand and a handgun on the other. Summarizing, being in
a city without light turn to be depressing after a while. I spent my
share of nights, alone, listening to the radio, eating canned food and
cleaning my guns under the light of my LED head lamp. Then I got
married, had a son, and found out that when you have loved ones around
you black outs are not as bad. The point is that family helps morale on
these situations. A note on flashlights. Have two or three head LED
lights. They are not expensive and are worth their weight in gold. A
powerful flashlight is necessary, something like a big Maglite or better
yet a SureFire, specially when you have to check your property for
intruders. But for more mundane stuff like preparing food, going to the
toilet or doing stuff around the house, the LED headlamp is priceless.
Try washing the dishes on the dark while holding a 60 lumen flashlight
on one hand and youíll know what I mean. LEDs also have the advantage of
lasting for almost an entire week of continuous use and the light bulb
lasts forever. Rechargeable batteries are a must (ed. Get a solar
powered battery charger) or else youíll end up broke if lights go out
often. Have a healthy amount of spare quality batteries and try to
standardize as much as you can. I have 12 Samsung NM 2500Mh AA and 8 AAA
800mh for the headlamps. I use D cell plastic adaptors in order to use
AA batteries on my 3 D cell Maglite. This turned out to work quite well,
better than I expected. I also keep about 2 or 3 packs of regular,
Duracell batteries just in case. These are supposed to expire around
2012, so I can forget about them until I need them. Rechargeable NM
batteries have the disadvantage of loosing power after a period of time,
so keep regular batteries as well and check the rechargeable ones every
once in a while. After all these years of problems with power, what two
items I would love to have? 1) The obvious. A generator. I carried my
fridge food to my parents house way to many times on the past. Too bad I
canít afford one right now. 2) A battery charger that has both solar
panel and a small crank. They are not available here. I saw that they
are relatively inexpensive in USA. Do yourself a favor and get one or
two of these. Even if they donít charge as well as regular ones, Iím
sure it will put out enough power to charge batteries for LED lamps at
least.

GAS

Gas has decreased in quality as well, there is little gas. Try to have
an electric oven in case you have to do without it. If both electricity
and gas go down, one of those camping stoves can work as well, if you
keep a good supply of gas cans. The ones that work with liquid fuel seem
to be better on the long run, since they can use different types of
fuel. You can only store a limited amount of compressed gas and once you
ran out of it, you are on your own if stores are closed of they sold
them out. Anyway, a city that goes without gas and light for more than
two weeks is a death trap, get out of there before itís too late.

A DIFFERENT MENTALITY.

I was watching the People & Art channel with my wife the other night. It
was a show where they film a couple for a given period of time and some
people vote on who is the one with the worst habits, the one they find
more annoying. We were in our bed, and this is when I usually fall
asleep but since the guy was a firearms police instructor I was
interested and managed to stay awake. At one point the guyís wife said
that she found annoying that her husband spent 500 dollars a month on
beauty products for himself. 500 USD on facial cream, special shampoo
and conditioner, as well as having his nails polished! If you are that
guy and happen to be reading this, or if you know him, Iím sorry, but
what an idiot!! ď500 USD, thatís a small generator or a gun and a few
boxes of ammoĒ I told my wife. ďThatís two months worth of foodĒ she
said. We were each thinking of a practical use for that money, the money
this guy was practically throwing away. Once the SHTF, money is no
longer measured in money, but you start seeing it as the necessary goods
it can buy. Stuff like food, medicine, gas, or the private medical
service bill. To me, spending 500 dollars on beauty products, and to
make it worse, on a guy? Thatís simply not acceptable. The way I see it,
someone with that mentality canít survive a week without a credit card,
no use in even considering a SHTF scenario. And this guy is a firearms
instructor?Ö probably the kind of guy that will say that a handgun is
only used to fight his way to his rifleÖ and his facial night creamÖ
Once you experience the lack of stuff you took for granted, like food ,
medicines, your set of priorities change all of a sudden. For example, I
had two wisdom tooth removed last year. On both occasions I was
prescribed with antibiotics and strong Ibuprofen for the pain. I took
the antibiotics( though I did buy two boxes with the same recipe just to
keep one box just in case) but I didnít use the Ibuprofen, I added it to
my pile of medicines. Why? because medicines are not always available
and Iím not sure if they will be available in the future. Sure, it hurt
like hell, but pain alone isnít going to kill you, so I sucked it up.
Good for building up character if you ask me . Make sacrifices so as to
ensure a better future, thatís the mentality you should have if you want
to be prepared. Thereís stuff that is ďnice to haveĒ that has to be
sacrificed to get the indispensable stuff Thereís stuff that is not
ďbasic need stuffĒ but itís also important in one way or another. My
wife goes to the hairdresser once every month or two. Itís not life or
death, but it does make her feel better and it boosts her morale. I buy
a game for the Xbox or a movie to watch with my wife every once in
awhile, just to relax. 7 or 10 dollars a month are not going to burn a
hole in my pocket. Addictions such as alcohol, drugs or even cigarettes
should be avoided by the survivalist. They are bad for your health, cost
a lot of money that could be much better spent, and create an addiction
to something that may not be available in the future. Who will have to
tolerate your grouchy mood when your brand of smokes is no longer
imported after the SHTF?

PART II

GRAY/BLACK MARKET

Once the S.H,T.F the black/grey market will take no time to appear all
around you. In my country, grey markets were even accepted in the end.
At first it was all about trading skills or craft products for food.
Districts and towns would form their own barter markets, and created
their own tickets, similar to money, that was used to trade. This didnít
last long. Those tickets were easy to make on your home computer, there
was no control and eventually people went back to paper money. These
markets were usually placed on warehouses or empty land, and were
managed by some wise guy and a few thugs or hired security. Anyone can
go rent a kiosk inside these markets for about 50-100 pesos (about 20-30
dollars) a day and sell his goods and services. Piece within these
markets is usually respectedÖ lets just say that these managers donít
call the police if someone tries anything funny, like stealing, fighting
or taking advantage of women. Thatís not good for their business and
anyone that tries to mess with their business finds out how much pain
the human body can actually experiment or gets a free ticket to meet the
Lord. Sometimes even uniformed cops manage security on these markets,
for a small fee of course. As always, you still have to be careful. They
may still try to pick your pockets or even attack you once you leave the
market. Once you leave the market, you are on your own, as always. This
markets evolved and now a lot of different products are available. Today
I visited my local market, a warehouse that is fairly well set up and
cleanly managed. They had problems for selling stolen merchandise and
fake Brand name clothes a few days ago. What can be found at a local
markets? Mostly food and clothing. Some have more variety than others
but cheese, canned food, spices, honey, eggs, fruits, vegetables, beer,
wine and cured meat are generally available, same as bakery products and
pasta. These are less expensive than those found at supermarkets. Fresh
fish is sometimes available but not always, people donít trust much
products that need refrigeration, and they get those at supermarkets
instead. Clothes are also popular and you can find copies of brand name
clothes, imitations, or even original stolen new clothes, the same goes
for shoes and snickers. Children clothes, underwear, socks, sheets and
towels are all very popular. Some sell toys, but they are always China
made, mostly poor quality though there are some few exceptions. Others
sell tools, also made in China can be found as well, but they are of
poor quality. Some offer their services and repair stuff or offer work
as handyman. You would be amazed of the junk that these guys manage to
fix: TVs, CD players, Power tools, etc. They even manage to solder the
small integrated circuits boards sometimes. Give one of these guys a
screw driver and a bar of chocolate and he will fix a nuclear submarine.
After food and clothes, the 3rd most popular item has to be CDs and
DVDs, movies, music, play station 2 and Xbox games, programs, it all
ends up there just one or two days after the official release in USA.
Seems that they have e guy hidden under Bill Gateís desk or something.
Anyway, almost everything can be found there, and if you want, you can
ask around, talk to the right guy and buy illegal stuff like drugs or
black market guns and ammo. The quality of the drugs is questionable, of
course, and a lot of addicts die from the mixtures these guys sell. Guns
are mostly FM High Powers, Surplus 1911s and Colt .45s, Sistemas, and
old Colt Detective revolvers in 38 special that found their way from
police and military armories into the black market. Condition isnít very
good but if you have money youíll be amazed of what you can end up with.
Everything that is used by the military and police, including SMGs a,
Browning 50 BMG Machine guns, and even frag grenades, is available in
the black market, if the customer has the amount of money and a little
patience, of course. The big guns may take a while, but the handguns and
grenades are readily available.

GOLD!! Someone hit me in the head please because I messed up about the
gold issue. Everyone wants to buy gold! ďI buy gold. Pay cashĒ signs are
everywhere, even on TV! I canít believe Iím that silly! I just didnít
relate it to what I read here because they deal with junk gold, like
jewellery, either stolen or sold because they needed the money, not the
gold coins that you guys talk about. No one pays for the true value of
the stuff, so big WARNING! Sign on people that are buying gold coins.
Since it is impossible to determine the true mineral percentage of gold,
small shops and dealers will pay for it as regular jewellery gold. What
I would do if I were you: Besides gold coins, buy a lot of small gold
rings and other jewellery. They should be less expensive than gold
coins, and if the SHTF bad, youíll not be loosing money, selling premium
quality gold coins for the price of junk gold. If I could travel back in
time, Iíd buy a small bag worth of gold rings. Small time thieves will
snatch gold chains right out of your neck and sell them at these small
dealers found everywhere. This is VERY common at train stations, subways
and other crowded areas. So, my advice, if you are preparing for a small
economical crisis, gold coins make sense. You will keep the value of the
stuff and be able to sell it for its actual cost to gold dealers or
maybe other survivalists that know the true value of the item. In my
case, gold coins would have been an excellent investment, saving me from
loosing money when the local economy crashed. Even though things are
bad, I can go to a bank down town and get paid for what a gold coin is
truly worth, same goes for pure silver. But where I live, in my local
are small time dealers will only pay you the value of junk gold, no
matter what kind of gold you have. So, Iíd have to say that if the SHTF
is bad, gold jewellery is a better trade item than gold coins. Forgive
me for not talking about this before, but I didnít realize this until
today, when I visited my local market warehouse and saw a ďBuy GoldĒ
sign.

PART III: GUNS, AMMO AND OTHER GEAR

After the SHTF in 2001, only the most narrow minded, brain washed,
butterfly IQ level idiots believed that the police would protect them
from the crime wave that followed the collapse of our economy. A lot of
people that could have been considered antigun before, ran to the gun
shops, seeking advise on how to defend themselves and their families.
They would buy a 38 revolver, a box of ammo, and leave it in the closet,
probably believing that it would magically protect them from intruders.
Oh, maybe you donít think that firearms are really necessary or your
beliefs do not allow you to buy a tool designed to kill people. So you
probably ask yourself, is a gun really necessary when the SHTF? Will it
truly make a difference? Having gone through a SHTF scenario myself,
total economical collapse in the year 2001, and still dealing with the
consequences, 5 years later, I feel I can answer that question. YES, you
need a gun, pepper spray, a machete, a battle axe, club with a rusty
nail sticking out of it, or whatever weapon you can get hold of. A LOT
has been written on survival weapons. Everyone that is into armed
survival has his or her own idea of the ideal gun battery. Some more
oriented to a hunting point of view, others only as self defense means
and others consider a little of both, and look for general purpose
weapons. Talking about guns, there is one special subject I want to
rectify, and itís the point on whatís the primary weapon for the
survivalist, specially a urban survivalist that has to function in a
society, yes, even after the SHTF. The primary defensive weapon for the
survivalist is his HANDGUN. Itís the weapon that stays with him when he
is doing his business around town of working on the field. The
survivalist IS NOT a soldier, even though you are a soldier or you once
were the meanest mother on the battle filed, your home town is not a
battlefield and it wont be, even if the SHTF. A LOT of water has to go
under the bridge until the situation gets to a point where you can
calmly walk down the street with a rifle on your shoulder. People, if
you are interested in real world SHTF situation, and you want to
prepared for the real deal, then understand that this isnít black or
white. You wake up one day and listen on the radio that the economy
collapsed and that the stock market closed indefinitely. What do you do?
You still have to go to the office/work/whatever .Kiss the wife good bye
and walk to the office with your AR across your back, or across your
chest, Israeli style, ready to shoot? You wont get far. Someone will
shoot you or throw you in jail, or in a mental institution. What Iím
trying to explain, is that its ok to prepare for China invading you
country, Germans and UN or Martians. That is the extreme, less likely
worst case scenario. There is an infinity spectrum of gray between the
black and white. White being your average normal day and black being
total TEOTWAWKI, lizard men invading the planet. Rifles do have a place
in the survivalistís arsenal, and a very important one. But you have to
understand that 90% of the time, the handgun will be the weapon you have
available when you need one. You cant compare to a trooper in Iraq that
has his weapon with him at all times. I ask you how many soldiers do you
know that keep wearing cammo and totting their M4s around town when they
return home? What works for war does not work for the survivalist,
especially the urban survivalist. Even if you live in a retreat far from
town, you have to work, donít you? Or do you have employees that take
care of all your mundane tasks, leaving you all day to keep watch with
your rifle ready? A soldier is part of a huge machine, HIS job is to
carry that rifle, while others take care of other needs. A survivalist,
one that is not part of a large survivalist group, has no one to cover
for him. When a new guy looks for advice on what to get for defense,
some will recommend a rifle or shotgun as a first defensive weapon. Lets
say race riots start in this guyís city. He still has to go to work
every day. What is he supposed to do? Shove his pump shotgun in his
pocket? A handgun, even though less powerful, can be used for home
defense AND go with you wherever you need to go. If the place floods, he
can still hop into an evacuation boat without leaving his weapon behind.
Iím sure no rescue team will pick you if you are carrying a long arm.
Theyíll ask you to leave it behind for sure. What if your government,
realizing that TSHTF and that they lost control of the events, bans all
firearms indefinitely? Donít know about you, but if things are that bad,
Iíd like to be armed. You can hide a handgun under a jacket. You cant
hide a long arm under your clothes. I think it was Clint Smith who said
that the handgun is only used to fight his way to his rifle. Man! that
sounds ďmachoĒ. Iíd love to see him walking into Walmart with his
tactical M4, taking the subway, visiting the doctor or going to the
bank. ďOver here Mr. Smith, you can hang you M4 right next to my coatĒ I
donít think so. Guys, unless you have your own shooting school, you do
not get to carry your rifle to work. OK, now that I got that out of my
chest lets look at some options.

Handguns: Revolver or Pistol? Pistol. All the way. Yes, I saw the video
of the guy that accurately emptied his S&W in Ĺ a second. I also saw the
shooting range and the crowd behind him, watching the event. Can he
shoot and reload that way if he is in his car, driving with one hand and
shooting with the other, while a bunch of scum bags in another car are
shooting at him? Hey, maybe he can. I know I canít. Can you? Generally
speaking, the revolver is more difficult to master than the pistol. The
double action is hard and it affects speed and accuracy. It can be done,
but I found that pistols are easier, as did many shooters. Also, even
though they seem to be more simple, revolvers are not as rugged as
service pistols, the mechanisms that cycles the cylinder and cocks the
hammer is both complicated and fragile compared to auto pistols. Before
anyone starts casting evil voodoo spells at me for insulting their
prized S&W or Ruger: I own revolvers and like shooting them, I just
donít think they are the best option for self defense, and I see that
everyone I talk to in my country who is worried about security as I am
also chooses pistols. Quality pistols resist sand, mud and dirt in
general better than revolvers, where a small pebble locked in the
mechanism may render the revolver inoperable. I personally had a problem
with a new stainless steel Taurus Tracker .357 magnum. After shooting it
a couple of times I reloaded it and shot all 7 rounds as fast as I could
and when I tried to empty it, I found that the empties were stuck
because they expanded because of the heat. I had to wait until the gun
cooled a little so I could empty the gun. Stuff like this can get you
killed, even more in a 7 round handgun. I once saw a man walk into a gun
store wanting to trade his 357 magnum revolver for a 9mm high capacity
pistol. He said he was driving when thugs from another car started
shooting at him. He was chased for a few blocks. He said that he pulled
his revolver and started shooting at them, and ran out of ammo real
fast. He wanted more capacity and fast reloading. I could not agree with
him more. Some will consider this ďSpray and prayĒ, thinking that all
rounds should hit the target and if some donít then it means that you
need more time at the range. Those same people will tell you that they
intend to use bolt action rifles as defensive rifles, making each shot
count, without ever missing their target, one shot one kill. I donít
agree with this. One shot one kill is ok for snipers, but the
survivalist should have other alternatives. I donít see anything wrong
with shooting four or five rounds at a chasing car. If those rounds make
them think twice about their intentions, they are rounds well spent in
my book, even if they donít kill the attacker. Suppressive fire is
possible if you have a high capacity pistol. I wouldnít doubt on using
such a tactic if it serves my purposes, or if it buys me time to get out
of there. Also keep in mind that criminals are cowards and therefore
attack in groups. The survivalist should be able to face more than just
one attacker. Getting into a gunfight with two or three armed men while
packing a 6 round revolver is rather hard to deal with. A high capacity
pistol can load about 15 or 19 rounds, and that can certainly make a
difference in a gunfight where you are outnumbered. A forensic doctor
that used to live in my neighborhood got killed last year. He was
ambushed when he exited a restaurant by 5 or 6 men. Even though they did
kill him he managed to kill 4 of them and severely injure another. He
shoot regularly and carried a Glock .40. Iím sure he was lucky but I
also think that his choice of weapon was also important in the outcome.
If anyone is wondering, people in my country that are serious about self
defense carry Glocks. Those that donít have the money for a Glock carry
Bersas, FM High Powers or 1911 surplus .45s. At first I wasnít sure
about the Bersa, but once I tried them I saw that they are very descent
guns. I now own two Bersas and am pleased with they performance. The
calibre choice calls for endless debate and it is not my intention here.
Lets just say that 9mm , 40S&W and 45ACP are the obvious choices. 40S&W
seem to be the most adequate, both in FMJ and HP, while 9mm lacks some
stopping power and hollow points should be used if possible. Though the
9mm lacks power compared to the 40S&W, it is more popular world wide, a
factor to consider seriously when choosing a handgun for SHTF. Besides,
9mm can also be used in a number of carbines and SMG, another important
fact to be considered. SMGs and carbines chambered for 40S&W and .45 ACP
are also available, but they at not nearly as popular as those chambered
for 9mm. Whatever you choose keep 500 or better yet 1000 rounds of
quality ammo for your handgun at all times. 100 rounds wont last much if
the crisis lasts long. Also consider that once the balloon goes up,
governments tend to restrict guns and ammo. Rifles I previously stated
that the urban survivalist will be using his handgun 90% of the time he
needs to defend himself and family from attackers. I didnít pull this
figure out of thin air, it is quite accurate based on what happens here
on daily basis, even a little optimistic. Cold harsh reality has shown
us that most attacks occur when entering or exiting your home, when you
are more vulnerable. Almost no one is stupid enough to try to enter a
barred house with armed occupants. Believe me people, the gene pool will
clean itself rather fast once the SHTF. So, is a rifle necessary? Of
course it is! There is still that 10%, and that 10% can still ruin your
day. And this percentage sky rockets if you intend to use that same
rifle for putting meat on the table. If you have to settle with just one
rifle, go for a semi auto. Ideally you should have a bolt action one and
a semi auto rifle. A bolt action and a semiautomatic 308 would make a
nice combination. Whatever you choose, try to keep it within military
calibers, and military weapons if possible. It may seem that I have
something against bolt rifles but I donít. I think they are fantastic
weapons, but I think that semi autos are much better fighting weapons.
The idea of ďpicking them outĒ 300 meters away with your bolt rifle, as
they come in a row blowing whistles and firing warning rounds is
laughable at best. Bolt rifles do have advantages over semi autos,
accuracy not being the most important one. Bolt rifles such as Mausers
last forever and are harder than rocks, THATíS important. They are
simple, easy to repair tools that will serve you (within their
limitations of course) longer than any other weapon. For example, the
coil spring on my Mauser 1891 safety broke into 3 separate parts, after
almost 100 years of faithful service. I dug into my tool box and found a
spring left over from a kitchen shelve door. I cut it approximately to
the length of the previous spring, replaced it and the rifle was fixed.
There are not many weapons that allow this. And it is a very valuable
attribute once the SHTF and spare parts are no longer available. Stick
to common calibers, 223, 7.62x39mm, or 7,62x51 (308). 223 vs. 308? Iím
not going there. If you prefer 223 because it has less recoil, itís
lighter, or you favor the AR rifle go ahead. If you think that 223 is
more powerful than 7,62.. sign up to Physics I. Just remember what I
said before, a survivalist is not a soldier serving in Iraq, and you
donít have the entire USMF to back you up. You are on your own. You are
not going to pin your attackers down with a questionably effective round
and wait until someone hits them with artillery. . About ARsÖ I wouldnít
trust my life to a rifle that has more versions than Rocky sequelsÖ the
way I see it, it means that the basic design was the problem and there
is no solution. On AK Ö all has been said. The most popular rifle on the
planet. And popular not because of politics, but because it works. It
also fires an intermediate power, effective round, available world wide.
SKS are also good, but Iíd rather have removable magazines. Again, donít
use voodoo on me because I say I wouldnít trust my life to a AR. If you
keep your weapon clean, know itís limitations and feel comfortable with
it, go for it please. A couple of rounds of 223 will kill anyone just as
well.

If you want a rifle that can do a little bit of everything relatively
well, do yourself a favor and get either a M1A or a FAL in 7,62 (308)
with a carbine length barrel. Preferably with a red dot scope and some
kind of light mount. Leave full length barrels to hunters and bench rest
shooters. Do your homework on both guns and youíll see what I mean.
Choose 308 not because of the added range you can get out of it, but
because of its power at all ranges, choose it because it turns cover
into concealment. Think about all the possible cover material you can
find in a city, like cars, trees, low walls and other structures. The
308 will go right through it, or destroy it after a few rounds. Itís a
proven cartridge through out the years.

Shotguns.

Shotguns are good general purpose guns. The main advantage I see is the
devastating stopping power and the ability to use special ammo, like
slugs and less than lethal ammo. Iím not so sure about the role as an
ďinside houseĒ gun. The muzzle blast is great and quick follow up are
not easy, especially when adrenalin is pumping through your system or,
even worse, when someone is shooting back at you.

Pistol calibre carbines and SMG.
If possible , Iíd choose a SMG reduced to semi auto (only if necessary, of
course, full auto selector is better if possible ) or other kind of short,
small, pistol calibre carbine.
The combination of a 9mm handgun and a 9mm carbine or SMG reduced to semi
auto or full auto class III has lots of advantages in my book and is a fine
combination.
Some think that full auto is a waste of ammo. I donít think so, not if you
know how to use your head, and use this feature wisely.
If you can get a short barrel and collapsible stock, youíll also have a
weapon that can be hidden under a heavy coat.
A red dot scope would enhance accuracy a lot.
The advantage of having the same ammo for long and small arm is not to be
taken lightly. From the logistical, survivalist point of you, this is one
big thumbs up!
Think about cowboys and Americans that lived in the west, they also knew the
value of using the same ammo for rifle and handgun. They had single action
handguns and lever action handguns chambered for the same ammo, the modern
survivalist can have the same ammo for his auto pistol and his sub-rifle as
well.
Some think that a pistol calibre long arm is just one big clumsy pistol or a
rifle sized gun that delivers pistol power and accuracy.
This is BS. Anyone that ever fired a pistol calibre rifle or SMG knows that
they are much more accurate, hitting torso targets at 100 yards is easy, and
a little more if you have a red dot scope.
Also, SMGs can manage hot ammo specially made for such guns, much more
powerful than the one for handguns. Even if you use regular handgun ammo,
the added barrel length adds a few extra feet per second making it more
powerful. Just check the information on boy armor. Body armor that is rated
to stop 9mm, for example, is not rated to stop the same 9mm ammo out of a
SMG or carbine, because the added speed will make that same round penetrate
the vest.
Anyway, +P ammo is more than enough power out of a SMG or carbine, you donít
have to go looking for special SMG ammunition.
If you can get full auto, that one nice feature to have. Not worth it if you
are on a tight budget, but if you can get it, it may come in handy someday.
Full auto SMG are giving police in my country a lot of headaches. A criminal
with little or no training will put 3 or 4 cops armed with pistols and
shotguns on their toes, just because of the sheer volume of fire these high
capacity 9mm deliver.
There was this case of a bad guy standing in front of a patrol car full of
cops on a red light stop, pulling a 9mm SMG out of his coat and emptying it
on full auto. The cops didnít have a chance, he killed them all. The car
looked like Swiss cheese with 40 9mm holes all over the vehicle.

SOUND SUPPRESSORS

All Iím going to say on this subject is : Have one if you can. Thatís it. Iíll
leave the rest of it to your imagination, donít make me say it.
Today it may seem like a ďnice to haveĒ featureÖ after the SHTF, it may be a
ďO God Iíve got to get a suppressor!!Ē feature.
Iíd buy a good suppressor instead of a ultra high dollar scope like the
ACOG. Buy a good quality scope, but donít spend a fortune on it, and use the
rest of the money on a suppressor.
If you are serious about preparing for SHTF, youíll thank me one day, just
trust me on this one.
9mm and 45 suppress quite well. Not as well as .22 , but there is much more
power on the big bore ammo.
Combined with a full auto SMG, the possibilities are much greater.
Sometimes itís just better to go unnoticed, specially in a SHTF crisis.

BODY ARMOR
Dear God! Buy body armor PLEASE!!
Itís dirt cheap in USA.
Preferably, get the police concealable kind( class II) Then continue to work
on it and get class III A military armor and some rifle plates, just as you
do when you start buying guns.
Youíll end up with 2 or 3 sets of armor which are great to have for family
members and spares.
Just so you know, I got so desperate about body armor I ordered it from USA
through internet (bulletproofme.com), I ended up paying a total of nearly
600 USD for body armor that costs 200 USD in USA. Buy it while you still
can. When the SHTF youíll end up wearing it, believe me. I donít wear mine all
day long but I do wear it when I have to go some place dangerous, deal with
people I donít trust, or when I have to go teach Architecture Representation
late at night, and must travel through a much dangerous road at midnight.

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