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Jeff Cooper’s Commentaries #1

Jeff Cooper’s Commentaries #1

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Jeff Cooper's Commentaries
Previously Gunsite Gossip
Volume One,1993
Vol. 1, No. 1............................................................................................................................1
Vol. 1, No. 2 Summer Solstice, 1993............................................................................................................................5
Vol. 1, No. 3 Independence, 1993...........................................................................................................................10
Vol. 1, No. 4 The Time of The Lion...........................................................................................................................17
Vol. 1, No. 5 Dog Days...........................................................................................................................22
Vol. 1, No. 6 KAL 007 Memorial...........................................................................................................................27
Vol. 1, No. 7 Special Bulletin − World Shoot X...........................................................................................................................32
Vol. 1, No. 8 Hunting Season...........................................................................................................................34
Vol. 1, No. 9 TR Week '93...........................................................................................................................39
Vol. 1, No. 10 Thanksgiving, 1993...........................................................................................................................44
Vol. 1, No. 11 Christmas...........................................................................................................................49
Please Note. These "Commentaries" are for personal use only. Not for publication.
 
Jeff Cooper's Commentaries
Previously Gunsite Gossip
 Vol. 1, No. 1 June 1993
With this issue, I am abandoning the editorial "we" along with reference to Gunsite in the title since I nolonger exercise control over the output of the Gunsite Press. What may henceforth appear as
"Gunsite Gossip"
will be a censored and abbreviated version of my periodical commentary. Times change, and secretarialassistance, along with access to the class room and the firing range, is now denied me. I must work on asomewhat different basis. However, I will attempt to keep the commentary coming and we will see what turnsup.I have in hand a pretty fascinating document from New York entitled "A Firearms Discharge Assault Report,1991." It is so thick that tabulation is impractical but it is certainly interesting to note that the law enforcementestablishment seems to have forgotten about the use of sights, providing they ever knew about the use of sights. Again and again we have reports of shootings at ranges of 5 feet and under in which many shots wereexchanged with no hits.I suppose it must be accepted that the majority of people who opt for a job in law enforcement are notinterested in marksmanship and only people who are interested in marksmanship can be counted on to hitwhat they shoot at. This is hard for me to accept. I can sympathize with Simon Bolivar, when on his deathbed, he sighed, "I have plowed the sea."Not long ago it was easy to tell who the bad guys were. They carried Kalashnikovs. Now it is much morecomplicated, but one thing is sure − any man who covers his face and packs a gun is a legitimate target forany decent citizen.As time passes we discover that there are a good many readers who have not been to school and who arepuzzled by our reference to "The Mozambique Drill."I added
The Mozambique Drill
to the modern doctrine after hearing of an experience of a student of mine upin Mozambique when that country was abandoned. My friend was involved in the fighting that took placearound the airport of Laurenco Marquez. At one point, Mike turned a corner was confronted by a terroristcarrying an AK47. The man was advancing toward him at a walk at a range of perhaps 10 paces. Mike, whowas a good shot, came up with his P35 and planted two satisfactory hits, one on each side of the wishbone. Heexpected his adversary to drop, but nothing happened, and the man continued to close the range. At this point,our boy quite sensibly opted to go for the head and tried to do so, but he was a little bit upset by this time andmashed slightly on the trigger, catching the terrorist precisely between the collar bones and severing his spinalcord. This stopped the fight.Upon analysis, it seemed to me that the pistolero should be accustomed to the idea of placing two shotsamidships as fast as he can and then being prepared to change his point of aim if this achieves no results. Twoshots amidships can be placed very quickly and very reliably and they will nearly always stop the fightproviding a major−caliber pistol is used and the subject is not wearing body armor. However, simply chanting"two in the body, one in the head" oversimplifies matters, since it takes considerably longer to be absolutelysure of a head shot than it does to be quite sure of two shots in the thorax. The problem for the shooter is tochange his pace, going just as fast as he can with his first pair, then, pausing to observe results or lack thereof,he must slow down and shoot precisely. This is not easy to do. The beginner tends to fire all three shots at the
Jeff Cooper's Commentaries Volume OneVol. 1, No. 11/53
 
same speed, which is either too slow for the body shots or too fast for the head shot. This change of pace callsfor concentration and coordination which can only be developed through practice.Mike Rouseau was later killed in action in the Rhodesian War. May he rest in peace!"Look out, they've guns!"
"Who, the wackos?"
"No, the Feds!"Perhaps you have noticed the warning from SIGARMS which insists that the hammer on the Sig must alwaysbe dropped by the decocking device and never by the thumb. This is curious in view of the fact that for manyyears the Walther people always recommended that the weapon be decocked with the thumb and not with thehammer dropper. This is still more evidence of a world in which we are to depend on machinery rather thanupon ourselves. Dropping the hammer with a decocker is usually safe. (Just be sure the weapon is pointed in asafe direction when you do it.)Lowering the hammer with the thumb is always safe if the operator is safe. Of course, if you must assume thatthe operator is inept, then decocking with the thumb is not safe. We dinosaurs prefer to put our trust in ourown abilities rather than in any reliability of a mechanism which can fail.I learned from Bill Buckley's
National Review
that a new technique that store owners are using to cleanse theatmosphere is the broadcast of good music at high decibel levels. It appears the Brandenburg Concertos at fullblast are quite sure to keep the scene free of street people.I suppose nothing can be done about the erroneous assumption that hand held fully automatic fire is somehowmore efficient than aimed fire. As I used to demonstrate, when I had a teaching job, quick semi−automatic fireis far more likely to produce results than bursts. Thus the preoccupation of the Feds with the idea that is itsomehow an offense against God and man to convert a semi−automatic weapon to a fully automatic capacityis simply a manifestation of ignorance. If a man is shooting at me, I would much prefer that he were on fullauto than carefully holding and squeezing. The automatic option is the greatest encourager of thespray−and−pray technique, which I have long done my best to discourage.Note that among the other changes instituted here at Gunsite, I no longer have any control over the products of the gunsmithy. You're on your own!"The society of late twentieth century America is perhaps the first in human history wheremost grown men do not routinely bear arms on their persons and boys are not regularly raisedfrom childhood to learn skill in the use of some kind of weapon, either for community orpersonal defense − club or spear, broadsword or long bow, rifle or Bowie knife. It alsohappens to be one of the rudest and crudest societies in history, having jubilantly swept mostof the etiquette of speech, table, dress, hospitality, fairness, deference to authority and therelations of male and female and child and elder under the fraying and filthy carpet of politically convenient illusions. With little fear of physical reprisal Americans can be as loud,gross, disrespectful, pushy, and negligent as they please. If more people carried rapiers attheir belts, or revolvers on their hips, It is a fair bet you would be able to go to a movie andenjoy he dialogue from the screen without having to endure the small talk, family gossip andassorted bodily noises that many theater audiences these days regularly emit. Today,discourtesy is commonplace precisely because there is no price to pay for it."
Jeff Cooper's Commentaries Volume OneVol. 1, No. 12/53

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