Why You Should Think Like A Green Beret Instead Of A Doomsday Prepper

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Top Tier Gear USA


There is a disaster coming and you have a decision to make: Is it better to live like a rat in a hole (a bunker) or to network with your neighbors and organize your local area of operation? Sure, it’s a loaded question but it brings up an interesting point: That even the lone wolf can’t survive long by himself. We are social pack animals by nature and the stronger we make our local “pack” the better our chances of survival.

I’d rather have a local neighborhood of 400 organized, motivated individuals defending an area and watching each other’s back than to go it alone in a ten foot corrugated pipe buried in the middle of nowhere. And if we agree on this point, then it makes perfect sense to look at the Green Berets for inspiration.

The Green Berets are the U.S. Special Forces elite commandos who get dropped behind enemy lines and are tasked with organizing the local or indigenous population toward a specific goal. They are smart, motivated and trained in tactics that make them extreme force multipliers. This should be your goal as a prepper, because surviving alone is too big of a job. The days of “Liver Eatin’” Johnson, where a mountain man could live in the back country for years at a time, wasn’t even a high survivability endeavor back in the 1800′s. The odds that one man or even a small family can, “face it alone” are very slim. Sure, you might get lucky and pull it off, but personally I prefer to play the odds. And if we look at history, the odds on survival as part of a community are much greater than going it alone– which is why communities formed in the first place.

In a disaster scenario where there is No Rule Of Law (sidenote: See NutNFancy’s excellent Youtube video on WROL: Without Rule Of Law) there will be a power vacuum. People will be scared and afraid and this is where we as preppers need to be ready to step up and provide leadership. People will only huddle in their homes for so long and if an organizational structure isn’t set up quickly to utilize your neighborhood’s strengths and resources, then you may lose them forever.

First Things First

One of the first things that a Green Beret unit will do when deployed to an area is to set up an operational base in friendly territory that serves as both an operational and administrative focal point. The operational base is used for:

  • Planning and Direction of Operations
  • Communications Support
  • Intelligence Support
  • Logistical Support
  • Briefing and Staging
  • Infiltration
  • Liason and Coordination
  • Training
  • Administration

Can you imagine setting up an operational base similar to what the Green Berets use by organizing your neighbors– perhaps at a local elementary school– and how it could be an asset in helping your community get through a Without Rule Of Law scenario?

Let’s compare two scenarios contrasting how modeling the Green Berets would work out much better for you and your family than modeling the typical character as portrayed on the Doomsday Preppers TV show:

A Tale Of Two Preppers

Timmy The Tool: Timmy has modeled his prepper plans in a similar manner to what he’s seen on the TV shows, including a buried corrugated pipe bunker that he’s stocked with two years worth of food for himself, his wife and his two kids, Timmy Jr. (9) and Susie (4).

Timmy lives in a non-descript suburban neighborhood in Bacon, Georgia. He doesn’t socialize or interact with any of his neighbors and the one’s who have made an effort to get to know him report that he is somewhat anti-social and odd.

When the balloon goes up, Timmy packs his wife and kids into his Chevy Suburban and gets on the road toward their buried bunker in the middle of nowhere. The trip is uneventful and Timmy hides his Suburban under a camouflage net and then ushers his family into the bunker.

Everything seems to be going swell the first night. But after seven days of living underground in a 10 foot by 40 foot bunker the kids won’t stop fighting and Timmy’s wife Helen is starting to show signs of emotional strain from being cooped up for so long without outside social interaction.

By Week 2 the radio stops working and Timmy can’t find where he put the backup radio. He’s now got a short temper and blames his wife, who’s close to the end of her fuse and can’t stop crying. Timmy’s daughter, on the other hand, has stopped communicating and their son spends most of his time escaping into books and has developed a strange cough. His wife is now begging Timmy to let them return to their home in the ‘burbs. But Timmy knows they must stay in the bunker in order to survive. It’s the only way at this point.

Two more weeks into the Crunch and Timmy’s wife has had enough. The boy is virulently sick and the antibiotics that Timmy had stored don’t seem to be helping. Their daughter has stopped eating and Timmy’s wife finally gives him an ultimatum: She’s taking the kids and returning to their home in the suburbs with or without him. Timmy weighs his options and decides that he can’t let her and the kids venture back to their house unprotected so he grudgingly packs their Chevy Suburban for the drive home. Or what’s left of their home. Looters have destroyed their neighborhood and most of the houses have burned to the ground because nobody organized the neighborhood into a defensive force that could have prevented the looting. Unfortunately, Timmy and his family will never make it home to see the wreckage because the highways are either closed or have been converted into ambush “kill zones” by marauding gangs before the military can restore order.


Ralph The Realist has adopted a different approach based on what he learned in the military as a Green Beret. Instead of withdrawing from his community he has taken proactive steps to deal with a “No Rule Of Law” scenario. Ralph is good friends with both the president of the neighborhood HOA and the principal of the nearby elementary school. Along with his wife and a couple of other friends of a similar mindset they have formed a prepper group and had begun taking action before the Crunch. Including storing ten 55-gallon drums of rice, wheat, beans and pasta in an unused storage shed at the local elementary school.

When news of rioting and societal breakdown begins to reach maximum velocity, Ralph and his group each begin to reach out to other friends and neighbors who – to no one’s surprise – are now very concerned about the current state of affairs, too. Many are open to taking action but nobody has a plan… except for Ralph and his group.

After the power grid goes down, Ralph’s prepper buddy, the president of the HOA, calls a neighborhood meeting and they discover that many of their neighbors have excellent skills that will help them survive the Crunch: One is a trauma nurse. Another is a welder. The guy down the street is a doctor and an avid hunter and there are several retired cops who live one block over.

Ralph asks for volunteers to form a neighborhood watch and almost everybody volunteers. They makes plans to barricade access to the neighborhood using old cars and RVs and set up a defensive perimeter. With roughly 150 families in their neighborhood there are more than enough adults with firearms experience to stand watch in shifts.

When Ralph’s son develops a strange cough, his wife takes her rifle and walks to the doctor’s house, a block over. She does not have to worry about leaving her house unattended since the “neighborhood watch on steriods” (hat tip: Rawles) is keeping the riff-raff out. The doctor correctly diagnoses her son’s cough and prescribes the right antibiotic. She then leaves her daughter to play with the doctor’s daughter for a few hours. The little one is coping with the Crunch as if it was a free day home from school: Fun!

After a week, Ralph’s son is feeling much better. His wife is happy and she has formed a gardening club with some of the other women on her block.

Three weeks later, Ralph receives word that things are still pretty crazy outside of their neighborhood. They’ve had a couple of gun fights when looters tried to gain access to their neighborhood but nobody was hurt. Word quickly spreads among the undesirables to leave Ralph’s neighborhood alone.

Everyone is coping reasonably well when a expedition group from another neighborhood proposes a trade of fish antibiotics (which can be used by humans) for some extra ammunition. The doctor advises Ralph that it would be a good trade, and since Ralph’s neighbor has a reloading press in his garage, they’re in no fear of running low on ammunition.

After another month, the military is finally able to get things under control and rule of law is restored.

A tale of two preppers: One a complete failure for adopting an ill-thought Lone Wolf strategy and the other successful after organizing his local neighborhood to withstand the perils of a Without Rule Of Law scenario.

About the Author: Sobert Gummer is the author of Sobert Gummer’s Survival Prepping For Hard Times web site. He has lived and traveled to some of the most dangerous cities in the world and has recently returned from living in South America where he fought off a home invasion with nothing more than a machete, married an Indian woman and had his head held over a fire by a Costa Rican witch doctor. He’s now back in the United States and prepping earnestly for an uncertain future while praying for the best. His latest book, Dogs For Preppers is now available at Amazon.com for your Kindle or Kindle app.

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Contributed by Sobert Gummer of Sobert Gummer’s Survival Prepping For Hard Times.

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  • Anonymous

    This was a good read and a reasonable perspective for people to adopt. Work together!

    • Anonymous

      Seriously?! this article was a complete waste of time. Did a 15 year old write this???

      • It definitely looks like it . Wonder what this fool thinks is gonna happen when 4 tanks show up 5-6 Bradley’s and a shitload of German bundesweher and Russian spetnaz troops show up . That would fuck all their b.s. up , totally ! What a dumbass article !

  • stalker

    excellent article but…i cant help but think that sedition from within is highly viable as well as the more people you have in a given area the easier it is to employ mass extermination…just some thoughts

    • laura m.

      Stalker: You said it well, I totally agree as some will sell out for various perks to the bad guys/martial law folks.

  • Cymro

    Excellent in theory. Neither scenario would probably read like it does here in the real world. Do you really think the local school board will let you use their facillity for food storage? I suppose the MD will have a supply of full scale antibiotics on hand(sic). Word spreads among the undesirables… So they have some type of network among themselves, right. Do you really think there are going to be more of you than of them? I suppose the guy with the reloading press has bullets, brass and primers for all the different calibers. If you don’t have them now you better hope the shit doesn’t hit the fan ant time soon because that stuff is hard to come by now and doesn’t seem to be getting any better. Both scenarios will be a complete failure. It will just take one a little longer than the other. Also the first thing the military will do because martial law will be in effect is to disarm everyone. What will you do if the military fails then?

  • Kulafarmer

    My question is what do you do when you know your comunity is not on the same page, and how do you organize it?? when talking to people in the comunity they glaze over and obviously are not listneing after a minute of any sort of discussion on what should we do if??? sort of a problem I think,
    dont think Ill be going to a bunker location but I do have concerns about what is going to happen when the container ships stop bringing food and other goods to our “paradise”

  • Both approaches are laden with pitfalls. You would probably be better off building a small community now of trusted family and close friends. Even then you’re going to find out who the weak links are during a real event. Forget 400 people, you’ll be lucky to get 40 on the same page. Just look around you and ask yourself how many people in your area share your ideals. If you are fortunate enough to live in area with many like minded people, consider yourself fortunate and rare. Most of us are surrounded by zombies.

    • laura m.

      Joe Rep. very well put; most of mankind are stuck in stupid zombie airheads.

  • Donald Wagner

    I’ve tried to send a copy of the “Green Beret” article (above) to my E-Mail for review later. Can’t seem to do that via this public library system. Would someone out there in computer-land be so very gracious as to send a copy to me at seahorsedonald@yahoo.com. Thank you very much.

  • Tom

    “the military is finally able to get things under control and rule of law is restored.”

    You mean Martial law. Rule of Law is already gone and won’t return by itself. IMHO the best option is to expatriate before they close the barn and transform the US in a big gulag/FEMA camp.

    • Expatriation (I live in the Philippines, which is VERY first-world, 98% Christian, and English is the language of choice in most areas) is the option I recommend to everyone who’s concerned that I speak to. You should leave the U.S. as soon as you can. You’ll be glad you did!!!

  • REB

    My main concern is two fold….first in the real world people dont work together too well unless forced…I wont be forced to work with losers or to carry them…we already have that trouble before any collapse…secondly why would I trust the military/govt to restore order…would it truely be the rule of law..ie the constitution or would it simply be the tyrants will as Jefferson once said?…work with people but have a backup plan in case they prove immpossible to work with!

  • Nice article, although I don’t agree with it’s principal premise that some civilization-ending disaster is looming.
    Most importantly, it should be stressed that prepping isn’t preparing for one singular disaster, but rather for ANY disaster. While those embracing survivalism may imply otherwise, Prepping ISN’T Survivalism.
    It may be cool to be able to jump out of perfectly good airplanes & ‘copters, know how to fashion 100 different booby traps, know how to kill silently & efficiently, and how to protect your flank or perform tactical combat maneuvers, that too isn’t Prepping either.

    Prepping is simply being as self-sufficient, self-sustaining & free from relying on outside support as you can be.

    When will we learn that Prepping doesn’t require the need for Camo BDU’s and bug-eating? So how about we NOT think like a Green Beret, but instead think like a Prepper… prepared to be self-sufficient for “disasters” we face every day?

    • Anonymous

      You clearly have no idea what Green Berets do.

      • But I do!, the article is sound!

        • Not at all ! Very unrealistic . In martial law , the neighborhood watch will be fucked when the military rolls in . You would have to be nuts to think a group of run of the mill neighbors can handle that . They will get FEMA camps or jail . Stayin in the hood ain’t gonna get it , at all !

  • Jim

    Very good article. Unfortunately most of the people in my neighborhood are either old or not trustworthy.

  • Sierra Dave

    While I am in the camp of complete global financial collapse. And I agree that a neighborhood organization is a good idea. It’s probably not that likely. Granted, if you have stored a few thousand Dollars of basic food, you can basically coerce the people to work together. They will have nothing better to do and have rumbling bellies and family in need. First thing would be to turn every lawn into gardens. There will be NO outside economy until the die off ends and the population equalizes to the food supply.

    There will be no LEO to come to the rescue either. The government will only exist until their taxpayer bought food runs out. Then the military will disband and go to family and small groups. Possibly becoming raiders.

  • Responder Dave

    There’s a median here. Prep in secrecy yet educate your most trusted neighbors. Publicizing your stockpile will find you both targeted and hungry.

  • Mojo Nixon

    …And the roaming armed thugs too collectively joined in their cause to take what they wanted, which lead to wars among the have’s and have-not’s. No surprise in the end it was the small family’s and individuals that were able to evade attention and escape with their lives.

    If you have something that a despot wants, the only way out is a fight of arms and a quick wit…. or simply obfuscation.

  • LOL!

    Hilarious, How to think like a Green Beret….authored by someone who wasn’t even in the military, much less a Green Bean. Oooo but he fought off some invaders with a machete, I’m impressed! Please.

  • MICoyote

    What a load of BS.

    Nothing like a little fiction (false) to make your retarded point.

    Yeah, all your burb neighbors are going to join hands and work together.

    Like the old lady across the street that yells at you and threatens to call the cops when you cut your grass and some gets in the streets?

    The wannabe gangsters in your hood? Or their parents who won’t control them?

    The Obama voters or FSA supporters?

    Have fun with pretending your a Green beret and your neighbors will follow your lead.

    • papayafarmer

      MICoyote is a tard that played in the motorpool too often. Anyone with a bit of sense would screen their neighbors. If the neighborhood isn’t to your liking, you can always move.
      BTW- natural disasters tend to bring about changes in attitudes, even amongst old lady’s.

  • I would rather eat there liver.

  • At The Rubicon

    As I read this I kept thinking about Moscow Rules, particularly the rule “Everyone is potentially under opposition control”.

  • Very nice article. As a former LRRP team member, I agree with your basic premise that a group, small or large, has a much greater chance of survival than a lone wolf.

  • stalker

    i believe in the military approach…3-4 man specialty teams are as strong and MORE deadly than a battalion of retards…

    • Here is the best option yet and a well planned version of exactly what you just said , is the only way , thank you !

  • Sal

    There was a TV miniseries called ‘Jericho’ a few years back which oddly had a wealth of information in it. It could have been a public message!

    • haEarl

      Yup that series came at a lul between 9-11 and indifference. I wonder if it would do any better today? Awareness is increasing but so is apathy.

      I am a loner by choice and have a wide variety of talents but the one thing I cant do is sleep and keep watch. You gotta have backup. And a large group is just inpossible to maintain. No accounting for the stupidity of large groups of people.

  • ARealGreenBeret

    As a REAL Green Beret who’s actually tried this one thing is missing from this article. You must be white. I’m not white so my neighbors immediately turned on me when approached like this. Racism is alive and well even when you’re trying to do right.

    • A REAL Green Beret? Then don’t make excuses and get the job done! There is only racism if YOU allow it to be racism, win the hearts and minds and don’t allow YOUR heart and mind to be affected negatively. Find that one belief system you share with the community and exploit THAT!

  • This retired Green Beret has been doing just what the article is talking about for the past 3 years…www.kellyky.com

  • John

    I’m a loner, so this article is moot to me.

  • monk

    You actually need to be both.

  • Ralph the Socialist

    I love how supposedly hard-core preppers trot out stuff like this community based Social cream puff piece. Does anyone else notice that when preppers need to “come together” and “it takes a village” to overcome Armageddon, it is still rugged individualism ala John Wayne. But when communities ask for participation and downright democracy in working together (before) the “End Times” it is all Socialist garbage! How can a Green Beret tactic be a Socialist tactic at the same time??? A little odd no?

  • Ken, your UK friend

    Hi. I regrettably find it near impossible to agree with fellow preppers who came online to discuss genuine concerns. My call is not to convert the neighbours who believe anyone who spouts chemtrail nonsense is wierd. I seek to get on better with you long before the EMP due to a CME puts a swift stop to our online discussions.
    Returning to Facebook soon. Please friend me. Cheers!

  • Ken, your UK friend

    I like the fact that Mr Gummer has raised important issues and invoked children in his hypothetical scenarios. A sick child is no fun and anyone with a new baby takes no end of time off work because the child rightly takes priority.
    The Doctor and Dentist may earn £100,000. Why? They can provide a SERVICE which there is no way you can provide for yourself.
    Likewise the Police and Military risk their own lives to protect us against bullies, burglers and bandits when if I am honest I have little resource to cope with.
    Fair fights to Queensbury rules are above board. I just hate being outnumbered. You hear its all about control, control this, control that, even population control which scares me shitless.
    I find it an abomination how ex servicemen have had arms, legs blown off and even worse, the public stereotype them as squaddies, glorified thugs, up to no good. Therefore it is doubly difficult for them to find new work on Civvy Street.
    Likewise a retired policeman never gets any peace, he is still always looking over his shoulder.
    I just needed to voice some appreciation for authorities who looked after a man who sees himself as the proverbial lone wolf, thats all.
    Wolves? Now thats an inspiration. They are pack animals howling loudly in British Columbia and the Cascades. The lone wolf? Possibly an elderly male who fell foul of his pack. His time is limited unless a lone human hunter dropped his weapon then gave the ‘Big Bad Wolf’ a social pat and removed the thorns from his paws. Elderly male lions may also be banished. And elephants are ruled by a Matriarchal society so when a Bull is fully grown he spends most of his time away from the rest but elephants can communicate through infrasonic rumbles travelling 12km and when the female is in heat they know exactly what to do.
    I always find Nature the truest inspiration.

  • Ken, your UK friend

    The story I’ve suddenly remembered is Androcles. He helped a lion in distress. Later Androcles was fed to the lions for a ‘crime’ which probably wasnt a crime, just a political opponent. The lion was the same beast Androcles met earlier so he refused to attack a friend.
    What goes around comes around. You cant get this far and prosper without the Androcles mentality can you?
    Do you want the Lion’s share or are you content with peanuts you sheeple?
    Coeur de Lyon!

  • chesepioc

    This is total bullshit. It’s not like some moderately armed Koreans could hold a block when the entire neighborhood is being burned around them.

  • TWG

    Laughable. There is NO way I would follow this guy’s advice. It might work in a movie, but it won’t work when this whole mess hit the proverbial fan. Can you imagine relying on a pack of marxists, communists, socialists fascists and islamics for your family’s security? You know that you would neverfind a neighborhood rid of those beasts. They’re a malignant cancer today and slithering into every neighborhood in this once great Nation. How very sad and dangerously naive. I won’t trust a single one of those beady eyed beasts ANYWHERE near me when the fighting begin. And to use a HOA director and a school principle as examples?!?!? The same groups that are fighting us to enslave us! How very naive can people possibly be? No, I won’t be snuggling up with those evil beady-eyed beasts, and I sure as H wouldn’t be sharing any planning with them. They are not our fellow Americans. They are treasonists, traitors and enemy invaders. I will FOREVER treat them as the vampires of humanity and the thieves of our future and the future for our children. They’re not coming ANYWHERE near me when this hits the fan. Believe THAT. I don’t allow them near me today, and they sure as H won’t be near me after fan is hit.

  • TWG

    ok, Now that I’ve stopped laughing for a moment…. These quotes come to mind here. There are many of us who will NOT be playing “defense”against these beasts. Best to go get the beasts that started it.

    “Infantry must move forward to close with the enemy. It must shoot in order to move…. To halt under fire is folly. To halt under fire and not fire back is suicide. Officers must set the example”
    – General George Patton Jr “War as I knew it” 1947

    “Go forward until the last round is fired and the last drop of gas is expended…then go forward on foot!”
    – General George Patton Jr

    “Fixed fortifications are monuments to the stupidity of man.”
    – General George Patton Jr

    “When you dig a foxhole, you dig your grave.”
    – General George Patton Jr

  • volksnut

    also people/human nature being what it has always been – you will have power struggles which may put a tyrant in control

  • Magnus Thorson

    You’re the one who needs to do your research before you put your foot in your mouth. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special_Forces_(United_States_Army)

  • kiljoy616

    Sorry to pop the fantasy bubble but both outcomes will be dead unprepared family. The neglect here is the problem with most survivalist in general. The guy has it all figured out and the wife and kids are just alone for the ride. That will if you look at history or the outcome lately shows that unless you have the whole family trained and functional its most likely the sheeple that came to the prepper’s call will just get in the way and the family unable to do much than delude themselves of the sheeple safety of the past will be sold into slavery and and the males made an example. SF train for years to do their job and even then they can fail miserably and have to be pulled out at a moments notice.

  • Greg81

    The first problem I have with the prepper and their bug out bunker is this. When SHTF they have to drive to get to their bunker that has all that food and stuff. What if there is an EMP strike? They won’t make it. The next is they have undoubtedly told someone or their kids told someone. When the SHTF, and people get desperate they will do what they can t survive. The prepper becomes a target.

    I have always thought that staying with a small community was best. Think about it. In a community you have people who are carpenters, farmers, welders, etc. I don’t think I need to say more on this.