When I was active duty in the Marine Corps and deployed to the Med for 6 months, I had some downtime for reading. Back then one of the more popular book series to read amongst military guys was either Tom Clancy or Rogue Warrior. What really intrigued me while reading these books, was the ability for the characters to immerse themselves into their environments, acquire the needed tools/weapons, accomplish the mission and then disappear. Plan, execute and vanish.
Fast forward several years and now we have the concept of the Violent Nomad. Clint Emerson (Author of 100 Deadly Skills) came up with this concept while still active with the SEAL Teams. On paper, Clint developed a list of skills every operator would need if they were to transition to the operative world. Once that list was completed and the sensitive skills were removed, You had the beginnings of the 100 Deadly Skills book. In short, the concept or idea was to develop a government program that we could put guys through to make them literally 100% ‘naked warriors’. By that, I mean that they can be inserted into any environment without any weapons and a minimal loadout and still be able to complete the mission with Macgyver like skills and techniques by leveraging the environment around them. This would make for a very low investment with high-profit margins for striking at targets for the U.S. government.
Even though many of us have never been tier 1 operators or have served as NSA/CIA operatives, we can still adopt this mindset, get a certain amount of training and start to become more self-reliant and rescue oriented. We need to stop relying on 911. When seconds count, law enforcement, and first responders are minutes away.
One of the first orders of business in the first 100 Deadly Skills book is the anatomy of the Violent Nomad. In other words, the gear carried and used to accomplish the missions. Let’s take a closer look at what the anatomy looks like when broken down into 3 levels or tiers. Keep in mind that your skill level, environment, and threats will dictate what gear you should carry and train with.
The anatomy (EDC) of a Violent Nomad broken down into 3 layers
The pocket kit is exactly what it says; the contents that you carry in your pockets every day otherwise known as your EDC.
- Glock 26 in a Tenicor Velo holster
- SWAT-T Tourniquet
- Streamlight Protac 1AAA
- Half Face Blades Trident Dagger
- Emerson Knives CQC-7 folding knife
- Gatorz Polarized Boxster sunnies
- Gerber Barbill minimalist wallet
If I’m traveling my pocket kit would obviously change a bit. For legal reasons, I would not be carrying a concealed fixed blade or my folding knife. For air travel, my pocket kit is slimmed down quite a bit. I only have the Streamlight flashlight, tourniquet, and my Zebra Stainless Steel pens. Most ‘tactical pens’ on the market look just like the name implies; Tactical. The Zebra pens are just that, a pen, that is available from most stores that sell office supplies.
A small kit that can be thrown into a desk drawer or any bag that you choose to take for the day. In other words, this small container kit can turn your existing bag into a go-bag to get you out of a bad situation. I’ve come up with two variations of the container kit. One for my day to day movement and one that is TSA approved for air travel. Let’s take a closer look at these two variations in more detail. First, the TSA approved air travel kit.
- PDW Expedition Compass
- SOL Space blanket
- Leatherman Style PS
- Streamlight Microstream flashlight
- Bic Lighter contained in an Exotac FireSLEEVE
- Exotac quickLIGHT tabs
- Frontier Emergency Water Filter Straw
The contents of the TSA approved kit are contained in a SealLine ‘See pouch’ that not only keeps the contents dry but can also be used as a small water collection container. The fact that it is see-through on one side is a plus for the TSA, as they are able to see the contents with a quick glance.
The operational bag is going to be the bag you grab every day before heading out the door, whether that is a messenger style bag, duffle bag or backpack. I’ve been through several different style bags over the years and have settled on two backpacks that work really well for my needs. Those two backpacks are the GORUCK GR1 (for travel) and the Grey Ghost Gear Throwback backpack (for everyday commuting). Both backpacks are more or less ‘slick’ on the outside, reducing the ‘tactical’ signature, which is what we are trying to avoid. The GORUCK GR1 does have a small section of low profile molle at the bottom, but you honestly cannot even tell it’s there with the black color option. Also I have one of the early models of the GR1 which does not have the velcro panel for patches. The goal here is to mask our capabilities by blending in until a threat presents itself.
I’ve traveled several times with the GORUCK GR1 as my only bag and it worked flawlessly, that included a 7 day trip to Europe. Very impressed with the backpack.
The Grey Ghost Gear Throwback backpack is used for my daily commuting around town if I go anywhere. It’s a little more streamlined than the GORUCK GR1 and still affords me all the features I need.
The contents of my operational bag are as follows:
- Dark Angel Medical first aid kit
- Dark Angel Medical pocket trauma kit
- Hydroflask water bottle
- Level 3a Soft Armor Insert
- Container Kit
- 13″ MacBook Pro
- Various electronic accessories to support my MacBook and iPhone
Be violent and deadly in spirit, but you don’t need to be walking around looking like you’re violent and deadly. Blend in, look like the sheep and be ready to hit the wolf button and rip people apart.
*This article was submitted to and approved by Clint Emerson prior to publishing
**Featured image courtesy of AP Images