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Auxiliary Operations: Got Personnel?

May 18, 2015

The auxiliary, in traditional, Maoist-type insurgency/irregular warfare, can be seen as the support echelons of the resistance army. That is a gross oversimplification in many ways, since the auxiliary performs a multitude of functions, including providing reserve combat/security forces, but in general terms, the comparison works, so we’ll run with it.

Among the functions filled by the auxiliary are the staff functions of a conventional military force, such as keeping track of the available personnel, intelligence collection and analysis, transportation, PSYOP and Information Operations (IO), an evasion recovery operations, including the conduct of safe house operations, as well as the more obvious logistics support functions. Too often, in the race to be “unconventional,” preppers and survivalists focus on being as different from the conventional military as possible, and “living off the land,” in “cells.” There’s a lot to be said for that. Unfortunately, too often, they throw the baby out with the bathwater, and cellular organizations still need organization and leadership to get anything done. Within the “new-again,” “non-generational warfare,” “tribal” model that we advocate here at MG, as opposed to the more traditional, Maoist-influenced school of thought we were brought up in, these necessary tasks still remain in place.

Personnel Accountability—The S1 Shop

One of the most important roles that the auxiliary plays for resistance movements is that of a recruiting element that can not only act as a contact for volunteers and potential recruits to the movement. Using the auxiliary for this role provides a degree of compartmentalization to keep potential spies and infiltrators away from active guerrilla units and underground operatives.

In the tribal model, of course, avoiding the confrontational nature of going out and looking for the fight, the threat of infiltration by regime informants and LEO is far less of a concern than many make it out to be—unless you’re doing stupid shit like soliciting explosives from strangers, or financing your training and preparedness budget by running cocaine or illegal drugs—there is still a need for the ability to “interview” and vet potential members who established members bring into the fold.

While the acceptance of preparedness seems to be growing within mainstream American culture, let’s face it, we’re still a very small minority. Most of don’t—and should not—make it a practice to walk up to every Tom, Dick, and Harry we meet, and start interrogating them on the state of their stockpiling of beans, bullets, and band-aids. Broaching the subject can actually be an awkward endeavor, even with established social or business contacts and friends. With new acquaintances, it can seem a particularly daunting process.

The subject of “recruiting” like-minded individuals into a preparedness group has been a topic of discussion on Internet forums and blogs for at least as long as I’ve been reading about the subject. Even in the professional UW role, the topic of safely recruiting personnel from a local indigenous population can be a discussion fraught with concern and confusion. These conversations can range from the best places to recruit, to methods of approaching the conversation.

 

The most obvious solution of course, is also one that has historically worked very well even in more modern, Maoist-type insurgencies. That is, word-of-mouth recruiting amongst the friends and family of already established members of the organization. This can work well, especially from a security standpoint, but only if the members of the organization understand completely, the importance of only discussing the option with truly trusted friends and family. Trying to recruit their drinking buddy that they met last weekend, because “he’s good dude, and has shared values,” is a recipe for infiltration by bad people. As obvious as that seems, it still happens. Even a “friend” that someone has “known” for five or six months, or even a year or more, may not be a suitable candidate, depending on the depth of the relationship.

Outside of the obvious “kith and kin” source of like-minded recruiting, we tend to make the subject of recruiting like-minded people a lot more complex than it needs to be. Just off the top of my head, I can think of three obvious places to find them: the gun store, the range, the surplus store.

The obvious argument against those three however, is that when the fit, 20- or 30-something male walks up to another person in one of those places and starts talking guns and preparedness, the new acquaintance’s mental alarms will be ringing like klaxons.

“Oh shit! This dude is a fed! He’s gotta be a cop! I bet he’s a UN spy!”

What if, however, the person that approached the subject wasn’t an aggressive-looking young dude who looks like he survives on a diet of barbells, punching bag, and testosterone milk shakes? What if it was the kindly old duffer instead, looking like Grandpa, who approached the young guy, asking for advice on how to shoot the new-fangled space-gun AR15? What if it is the professional-looking female, in business attire, looking for someone to provide some guidance on personal protection shooting with this Glock she just bought, after some co-workers at work recommended it as a defensive pistol, and now, she’s a little concerned because she read something about a lack of external safeties? In either case, they have the ability to begin developing a conversational relationship with the potential recruit in a non-threatening, non-hostile manner, opening the door to more focused questioning.

 

Wow, you really know your stuff about this AR15! Were you in the service?”

“Yes Sir. I spent a couple years with the 82d Airborne.”

“Hey, that’s great! I was a paratrooper too, back in my younger days!”

Now, they’ve got a shared frame-of-reference and a relationship developing.

“Hey, that’s awesome! Thanks for your service! What do you think about XYZ going on in the military today?” (Suggestion….if you ask this, shut the fuck up and LISTEN to what he’s saying. You may decide you think he’s a brainwashed automaton with no independent thinking skills, but you asked HIM. Trying to change his mind now is not conducive to developing a solid picture of what his beliefs are.)

“Oh wow! I never thought about how important it would be to actually be able to get my gun out of my purse. I guess I just thought it would be in my hand when I needed it! You’re pretty good at this stuff. I’ve got some girlfriends who could benefit from this. Would you be interested in teaching some lessons? I could probably get a few of them to pay you for the lessons!” Now, not only does she have a pretext for future contact with the candidate, she even has a pretext for bringing along a second or even third person to get a read on him or her.

The point of course, is not the methods used to initiate the conversation and develop the relationship. That is entirely too contextual to specific circumstances and situations. The point is that making initial contact with a potentially/likely like-minded individual might be—will probably be—more effectively conducted by the person you wouldn’t think of having do it. Of course, if your female shooter is a IPSC Grandmaster shooter, you might want to vary the approach from the above…

Vetting Personnel

Another aspect of S1 obligations that auxiliary personnel may find themselves filling, as part of the follow-on conversations with the new “recruit” is vetting them for suitability and background. This doesn’t mean you need to be conducting a full-on background investigation or conduct clandestine surveillance, trailing them around town (although, either may be necessary…).

 

It can be as simple as having a series of questions to ask, based on the needs, demographics, and goals of my group. If my group is Jewish, I probably want to find out if the candidate is a member of the Aryan Nations, right? That could be…well….awkward. On the other hand, I may want to find out what his vocational and avocational background is. The ripped, muscled-up dude at the range, running the AR15 might be shooting it because he’s comfortable with it, after carrying it in the 101st, but that’s before he got out and became a male stripper who goes to the range to sober up after spending his night snorting cocaine off the navels of his gay clients. That would get incredibly awkward if your group is almost entirely fundamentalist Baptists, right? What if he’s a welder? A mechanic? A cop? A tax attorney? What if he’s a truck driver? How hard is it to find out what your new friend does for a living? Pretty easy, in a culture where people tend to self-identify by occupation.

How often do our conversation with new people run like this:

“Hey, nice to meet you, Jim! Whaddya do?”

“Oh, I’m a brick mason. What about yourself?”

The problem of course, is verifying that claim. Does the individual “recruiter” have the relevant background to know which questions to ask to verify or discredit? Is he/she going to have to bring in another group member to get into the conversation? Is relaying questions via the recruiter going to work, or will it lead to awkwardness that makes it obvious what is going on, and puts off the candidate? Maybe it’s time to invite the candidate to a friendly “neighborhood” barbecue.

“Hey, Jim, nice to meet you. So, Mark said you were a brick mason, but you grew up down in Auburn? I went to UGA. What part of town did you grow up in?”

“Wait! Jim, right? Did I just overhear you say you were a squad leader at the 82d? When? Which brigade? No shit!? I was in your brigade, a couple years earlier. Did you know SSG XXX? Big tall dude, lifted weights like it was his religion? Couldn’t run worth a shit?”

“Hey Jim, I was just talking to Mark, and he mentioned that you worked for Boise PD. I’ve got a buddy over there, that used to work with me at the prison. Do you know Rob P.?”

Organization and Record-Keeping

In traditional cellular-organized underground organizations, the importance of compartmentalization is—rightfully—emphasized. What is often overlooked by novices however, is the fact that the compartmentalization is lateral and upward vertical. The leadership cells still need to know who they have working for them, and what skill sets those individuals have. This knowledge allows them to plan operations and task-organize the main effort and supporting efforts. If every member of an organization keeps their abilities secret, for “OPSEC!” except they have guns and “can shoot,” they are automatically limiting their usefulness to the organization, and limiting its ability to accomplish anything.

The prerequisite for record-keeping of personnel information of course, needs to emphasize the security of the information. This ranges from reassuring members of the organization that the people responsible for securing it are trustworthy, to selecting personnel for the task that are less likely to be recognized/identified as members of the group. Perhaps the powerlifting gunfighter is not the best choice for this role. Grandma might be a better choice.

The importance of this record-keeping by the auxiliary can be recognized in the planning process by the operational arms of the group, during the METT-TC analysis of impending operations. Objectively understanding the available skills and abilities of the membership of your group allows you to develop an accurate estimate of the friendly Troops situation. If a specific plan calls for XYZ skill, and the planner/leader can contact the personnel section and get connected with someone who happens to have XYZ skill, then the mission can commence. If no one in the group has XYZ skill, or has never shared their knowledge of XYZ skill, then the plan has to be scrapped for an alternate plan that may offer less chance of success.

Conclusion

Ultimately, the S1 role for the auxiliary provides a stellar example of roles within an organization that people can fill even if they are not a pipe-hitting, skull-stomping Alpha Male gunslinger with a fetish for face-shooting. In order to take advantage of this absolutely necessary role however, individuals and groups alike must begin recognizing that the need for security/secrecy must be balanced by the requirements of being operationally effective, through knowledge of the various vocational and avocational skills that individuals bring to the organization.

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6 Comments
  1. Big Mike permalink

    John, this is a very insightful post. In our day of electronic comms, people don’t talk face-to-face enough. Being a good LISTENER is a skill everyone should learn. Briefly stated: listen to understand what they say and mean, not wait for a pause to babble your viewpoint. Grandmas may think they can’t contribute, but they can make a big skillet of biscuits from scratch and fry some ham and then hang them in the bushes in the dark when some “friends” are passing by.

  2. Gun Bunny permalink

    Another great article, John. You were thinking and writing on “organization” this weekend, as I was thinking and writing on the general theme of “organization.” Here are my notes:

    The world is ruled by teams, networks, organizations, tribes, and nations.
    • No matter how naturally inclined you are to accept individual achievement as a way of life, individual effort will only take you so far.
    • The “Roman Empire” may have been a bunch of stealing, murdering, land grabbing bastards, but they were a highly organized, disciplined, and effective bunch of stealing, murdering, land grabbing bastards.
    • Organized crime is organized for a reason.
    • To study the warfare of “The West” is to study the behavior and motivations of organizations: tribal-nations and alliances of tribal-nations (e.g., The Peloponnesian Wars).

  3. Alfred E. Neuman permalink

    Reblogged this on The Lynler Report.

  4. ““If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.”
    -Sun Tzu, The Art Of War

    If you ain’t got an S1, you don’t know yourself.
    If you ain’t got an S2, you don’t know the enemy.

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  1. Mosby: Auxiliary Operations: Got Personnel? | Western Rifle Shooters Association

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