Former CIA Officer Jason Hanson Reveals...

Spy Secrets That Can

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Get Out Alive

Mailbag Monday

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From Tyler M: I was always told dry firing can damage your firearm. Is this true?

Answer: The fact is, it depends on your gun and most importantly whether it’s a centerfire or rimfire. If its centerfire gun such as a Glock you can safely dry fire the handgun all day long. If you own a .22 then you do not want to dry fire it.

From Peter S: In the case of a disaster and need to cook food, how can the smell of cooking food be contained so that it does not attract others?

Answer: While there’s no way to completely eliminate the smell of food when cooking there are a few things to take into consideration. First, avoid cooking foods with lots of spices, which can create a stronger smell. Another thing you can do is start another fire and burn wood or trash which will create another smell that can help mask the odor from the food. Also, try not to cook when it’s really windy so the smell won’t travel as far. There are thermal cookers which is basically a plastic box you can cook inside of, however, these aren’t something you would probably have with you during an emergency situation.

From Barbara R: Unfortunately, in the event of an emergency we can’t all bug out to a perfect, isolated, tree-covered spot to escape imminent danger. My family lives in a town surrounded by flat, agricultural land with hardly a tree in sight. The fields are either barren during the winter or flooded later for the production of rice (and they are privately owned). Anyone attempting to camp out around here would stick out like a sore thumb. What do you suggest?

Answer: There’s no perfect answer but I would recommend planning ahead and being prepared to leave at a moments notice. What I mean is, since you are limited with places that are safe nearby, you would need to leave before things get too bad. So when possible, plan on leaving ahead of any disaster or dangerous siltation. Of course, this may not always be possible so I would plan on staying in your home. For example, maybe you want to consider building some type of shelter in your basement or on your property where you could safely hide out during an emergency.

From Robert Y: How do I avoid having my internet activity monitored?

Answer: I recommend using a virtual private network (VPN) anytime you surf the internet. A VPN allows you to browse the internet anonymously for your privacy. There are a lot of different options when it comes to VPN’s but I personally use one called TunnelBear.

From Dave S: I had major shoulder surgery a year ago and I did not have the use of my dominant hand for an extended length of time so it was a good opportunity to learn to shoot with the weaker hand. I have shared that with other people that I work with and it was generally understood if you are injured you need to have a working knowledge with both hands how to operate your firearm. Can you aim effectively, can you reload, etc.

Answer: This is a great point. In fact, in the handgun course I teach at the Spy Ranch we cover shooting with your off hand, as well as reloading one handed. The fact is, if you are in a gunfight and are shot in your dominant hand you need to be able to transition to your other hand. Remember, the majority of people survive gunshot wounds and it’s critical to stay in the fight.

From Charles J: I see that Gerber makes many different styles of multi tools. Would you be able to narrow down your choice?

Answer: Gerber does make a lot of different tools but it comes down to personal preference and which size you want to carry. One I personally like is the Gerber Centerdrive multi-tool, which sells for $85 on Amazon. This one is a full-size multi-tool but should meet many of the basic needs you want when carrying a tool. Another option is the Gerber Suspension multipliers, which is smaller and sells for only $26 on Amazon.

From Iris Z: It’s hard to find a handgun that fits a woman’s small hand. Realizing there are grip substitutes, what is your recommendation for a 9 mm or a firearm suited to the smaller hand?

Answer: I personally recommend the Glock 19. This is the gun my wife carries and it’s a sub-compact frame so it’s perfect for people with smaller hands. Now, if the 19 is still too big you can try the Glock 26, which is even smaller than the 19 but still available in 9mm.

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