Former CIA Officer Jason Hanson Reveals...

Spy Secrets That Can

Save Your Life

Get Out Alive

Mailbag Monday

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From Maurice P: Which Baofeng radio should I order? There’s a bunch of options. What is a programming cable and do I need to get extra cables? Is there any way to hook one of these to a taller antenna?

Answer: The Baofeng radio I own is the UV-5R. I have the 2nd generation model but they have a new 3rd generation model that is very similar. As for the programming cable, it can be used to connect the radio to your computer so you can input all the frequencies into the radio instead of doing it manually. This would probably be a good idea if you plan on using the Baofeng as a ham radio. Finally, you can purchase a larger antenna than the one that comes with the radio. It’s about 15 inches long and does give you better operating range.

From Olivia W: What do you think of plants as a way to deter criminals? I love roses and cacti of many kinds. I have put a potted cactus that grows tall and has long and short spines. They do not hinder my view and flower beautifully…

Answer: There’s no question that criminals use windows to enter homes to commit crimes. With that being said, having these sorts of bushes near windows can deter a criminal if the plants are large and right in front of the window. If a criminal were looking for an easy window to sneak in the plants would most likely make them think twice. However, remember that some criminals who commit these types of crimes are drugged up and may care less about the pain of falling into a cactus so make sure you have plenty of other security measures too. (Cameras, motion sensor lights, alarm sign in your front yard.)

From Richard H: Many years ago I lived in an area where I was physically attacked on a number of occasions, and took a few beatings, but ultimately walked/staggered away, and lived to tell about it… However, my question is: When being attacked, I never assumed that I would lose my life in the process. Being older now, I think this is fool-hearty, but is there a way to mentally condition yourself to be prepared to fight like your life depends on it from the beginning?

Answer: There’s a saying the goes, “stay in the fight.” I first heard this from a friend who was a police officer but the reality is that people such as police officers go through mental conditioning while in the police academy. First responders clearly deal with intense situations where they are engaged in a fight and have to be trained to keep fighting and never give up. The natural human reaction to a dangerous situation is usually referred to as “fight or flight.” Police officers must train to “fight” but the average citizen would probably react by “flight.” In addition, it’s important to remember that whether you are hurt in a fight or even shot it doesn’t mean you are dead. The majority of people survive gunshot wounds so remember even if you are shot to keep fighting. Also, I believe that any fight can turn deadly quickly so I am always prepared to act like my life depends on it.

From Mary B: I am looking for a multi-tool for everyday carry. I know it’s important to invest in good tools, but I don’t have a very big budget. Is there one you can recommend for around $30?

Answer: There are a lot of different options when it comes to multi-tools but I personally like Leatherman. They make a multi-tool called Squirt, which is a smaller multi-tool that contains 9 different tools. It sells for around $30 on Amazon and Leatherman makes quality tools that will last a long time.

Spy pen in action

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