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Field Manual of the Free Militia: Section II

Introduction to the Free Militia

1994
By the Free Militia
See also: Section I

2.1 Who and what is the Free Militia?
"I would remind you that extremism in the defense of liberty is no vise and let me remind you also that moderation in the pursuit of justice is not virtue." -- Barry Goldwater, 1964 Republican nominee for president

"I promise to defend and observe the Constitutional liberties embodied in the Bill of Rights for all American citizens by example, persuasion, and force of arms if necessary." -- From the oath of office for the Free Militia

2.1.1 Who, what, when, where, why, and how?

Who is the Free Militia?

The Free Militia is composed of private citizens who carry on normal civilian lives. While some members may have former police or military experience, they are presently civilians simply exercising their right to keep and bear arms and form militias.

What is the Free Militia?

The Free Militia is a locally organized body of armed American citizens committed to defending their Constitutional liberties. We call it "free" for two reasons. First, it is free or independent from the control of any local, state, or federal government. Second, our whole purpose is to defend our freedoms. So, the Free Militia acts freely to defend freedom.

We also call it a "militia" for two reasons. First, we are a military organization. Our purpose is, if necessary, to defend our liberties by force of arms. Second, we are a militia in the sense that we are composed of private citizens instead of professional soldiers. Hence, the Free Militia is a combat team of private citizens.

The name Free Militia was selected partly to describe what we are. But the terms were also carefully chosen to conform to the language of the Second Amendment to indicate our intentions are Constitutionally legal. "A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed."

The Free Militia is an independent, organized group of private citizens who are armed and ready to fight for their Constitutional rights and liberties.

When will the Free Militia fight?

The Free Militia's "agenda" is the Bill of Rights. Our purpose is solely to defend these rights for ourselves and our neighbors. We will mobilize and fight as a militia only when these rights are seriously and intentionally threatened or denied. As a result, there are several things we are not:

Where is the Free Militia?

The Free Militia's operations are confined in and around the local community where its members reside. Training may occur in the countryside, but the Free Militia's membership and organization is tied to the locality.

Why does the Free Militia exist?

The Free Militia exists because our Constitutional liberties are systematically under attack by state and federal authorities. While these threats to our rights have not yet justified armed conflict, it is apparent that we must act now to organize and train ourselves for the possible day when a genuine tyranny is established in the United States by a coup within our government or invasion from without.

How does the Free Militia hope to succeed?

For the time being, the Free Militia cannot possibly be capable of fielding a significant fighting force. We are too small and too isolated to stand up to a professional armed force. However, we can be an effective and significant fighting force in the future with the right foresight and preparation now.

For now, our purpose is not to raise a full-scale army but to put things in motion and prepare to readily do so if and when circumstances require it.

We can prepare now to develop the framework that can incorporate large numbers of law-abiding, liberty-loving citizens if and when a crisis in our government obviously calls for resistance by the people.

2.1.2 Your duties in the Free Militia

If and when you decide to commit yourself to the Free Militia, you will be required to take an oath. No certificates will be signed. No centralized list will be maintained with your name on it. However, you must take the oath in the presence of those men who will be in your immediate combat unit (called a cell). They are the ones that need to know you mean business since they are the ones who will be depending on you.

The oath you will have to take embodies your main duties to the Militia and is worded as follows:

"I, __________________, promise to defend and observe the Constitutional liberties embodied in the Bill of Rights for all American citizens by example, persuasion, and force of arms if necessary. To that end, I intend to arm myself, I voluntarily join the Free Militia, and I agree to obey its commanders -- to the extent that my conscience allows -- for the duration of my service in the Militia and I pledge never to willfully betray the Militia's principles, members, or tactics."

It is important that you know explicitly what this means so let me comment on each clause.

Hopefully you understand both what is expected of you and why it is important. I believe that everything we are asking you to pledge yourself to is biblically moral, Constitutionally proper, and tactically necessary. Hopefully you are also willing to take this oath and join the Free Militia. But take time to think about it and be sure of your commitment before you join. The decision is a heavy one and should not be taken lightly.

2.1.3 Alert and mobilization of the Free Militia

Precisely when will the Free Militia commit itself to fight? This question can be answered best by stating the conditions that will result in the Militia being alerted or mobilized. Under usual conditions, minutemen in the Free Militia lead normal, private lives interrupted only by occasional cell meetings for training and other preparations. However,

An alert is a level of readiness that is not convenient in everyday life. Mobilization is a level of readiness totally incompatible with daily life.

While the details of our procedures for alerts and mobilizations must remain confidential for now (you are not yet a member of the Militia), we can give you some examples of what would transpire under these conditions. For an alert, a prearranged system of notification is used to contact all minutemen. They continue to lead their lives by going to work, attending church, shopping, and keeping appointments. However, the frequency of contact among cell members is stepped up and certain preparations are taken individually. For instance, rifle magazines that are normally left empty are loaded and then packed in their pouches. Uniforms and gear are made readily accessible by hanging them in convenient order in your closet.

For a mobilization, developments are serious enough that normal life is interrupted. You do not simply keep gear and weapons handy, you actually wear them. You do not simply keep in contact with your cell, you gather together with them. Under mobilization you take all the steps possible to prepare yourself and brace yourself for actual combat with an emerging enemy.

Now the Free Militia may go on alert or mobilize under any number of unforeseen scenarios. However, alerts and mobilizations will be called for automatically under the four following conditions.

Please be assured that mobilization does not necessarily mean we will fight. It only means that we are ready to fight if we are forced to do so.

2.1.4 Can we win an armed conflict?

Suppose you join us. Suppose we mobilize. Can we win? The enemy police and military forces under the control of a growing autocratic government will have and wield great might. So how can we stand against such a powerful foe? To some extent, whether we win or not is immaterial. If we are right, our duty is to resist whether or not success is likely. But we can win! Initially, the potential enemy will be greater in numbers, have superior firepower, better training, more equipment, and closer coordination. But we have three things in our favor that they do not have: the people, our own advantages, and a cause.

The people

Notice I said initially they will be greater in numbers. This is because most Americans are dull to the things happening around them and don't have a clue to their Constitutional rights and liberties. But there will come a time when the Leviathan State will show its true colors and cross a line that even the average citizen will recognize as threatening. At that time, men willing to fight will come out of the woodwork.

And remember, there are between 100 and 200 million firearms in the hands of private citizens of this country. These are in the hands of people who, almost by definition, would side with the Constitution rather than the government in a struggle. (The possession of firearms tends to either result from or result in a person favoring gun rights as well as a healthy distrust of the federal government when it seeks to take them away.) Moreover, all of the armed forces and local law enforcement agencies are sworn to defend the Constitution and many soldiers and officers love their personal liberties. So it would not be long until we are the ones with superior numbers and perhaps even superior firepower.

The very acts by the government that will cause the Free Militia to rise up will also arouse the general public to resist and seek skilled leadership.

In the meantime, our inferior numbers do not have to spell defeat. It is said that just prior to World War I, Kaiser Wilhelm of Germany visited Switzerland and reviewed some of its troops. Of course, Germany's army was much larger than little Switzerland's. So while the proud Kaiser was reviewing the troops, he stopped to talk to one of the enlisted men: "I am impressed. You are well disciplined and well trained. But what could you possibly do if Germany attacked you with forces twice yours in number?" The enlisted man boldly replied, "I suppose, sir, that we would have to shoot twice!" Switzerland was never attacked due to its neutrality, mountainous terrain, preparedness, and the confidence to resist exemplified by this one soldier. The fact is that superior numbers can be defeated!

Corresponding advantages

This leads us to the next issue. It is true that the potential enemy will have serious advantages. But they do not have all the advantages. For just about any strength that they have, the Free Militia will have a corresponding strength. These balancing factors should be sufficient to tide the Free Militia over until the tables are turned and we have the advantage of numbers. Some of these advantages which will counteract the advantages of the potential enemy are as follows.

We have a cause!

Many people think that "might makes right." In other words, it is presumed that whoever wins a war is justified in dictating the terms of peace. In fact, RIGHT MAKES MIGHT! Being in the right and knowing it energizes resistance and gives a strength of resolve largely absent among those who fight for the selfish motives of mere survival or personal gain.

The drafted soldier is motivated to survive until his tour of duty is up. The career soldier is motivated by promotions in rank and higher salaries. The patriotic volunteer is motivated to win for the sake of a higher cause.

All three types of motivation will cause a man to fight tooth and nail when he has to fight. But one motivated by survival only "has" to fight when he is convinced that fighting is less hazardous than disobeying his superiors. He will hold back to avoid risks. He will not go beyond the call of duty. The career of soldier only "has" to fight to the extent needed to gain recognition. His boldness will be tempered by the desire to live and enjoy the promotions and benefits he seeks. But while the patriot will not desire to risk or sacrifice his life in vain, he "has" to fight to win. He will be willing to go beyond the call of duty because he is energized by an idea, not by self-preservation or selfish ambition.

So the most critical thing on our side is principle. We are right, we are justified, we have a cause. Never underestimate the power of ideology.

Patrick Henry said: "...millions of people armed in the holy cause of liberty, and in such a country as that which we possess, are invincible by any force which our enemy can send against us.... The battle, sir, is not to the strong alone: it is to the vigilant, the active, the brave."

Major H. von Dach of the Swiss Army wrote: "The military expert who undervalues or even disregards guerrilla warfare makes a mistake since he does not take into consideration the strength of the heart" (Total Resistance, Paladin Press, 1965, p. 173).

The U.S. Army field manual on suppressing guerrillas states: "All troops committed to operations against irregular forces must be trained to appreciate the effectiveness of irregular forces.... Troops must be indoctrinated never to underrate guerrillas. To look down on guerrilla forces as inferior, poorly equipped opponents breeds carelessness which can result in severe losses" (FM 31-15, Irregular Forces, 1961, p. 46).

Are you vigilant, active, and brave? Do you have a strong heart? If you do, then join us! Take the oath of office and arm yourself. You will be enlisting with a small but determined group that is resolved to make a difference in protecting our precious liberties. Barry Goldwater was the 1964 Republican nominee for president. As he aptly said, "I would remind you that extremism in the defense of liberty is no vise and let me remind you also that moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue."

2.1.5 Discussion questions

Do you have any questions about what the Free Militia is or what it stands for? What are they?

Do you have any questions about our strategy of not raising an army but building the structure or framework to organize, train, and lead one?

The Free Militia oath of office reads as follows: "I, ___________________, promise to defend and observe the Constitutional liberties embodied in the Bill of Rights for all American citizens by example, persuasion, and force of arms if necessary. To that end, I intend to arm myself, I voluntarily join the Free Militia, and I agree to obey its commanders -- to the extent that my conscience allows -- for the duration of my service in the Militia and I pledge never to willfully betray the Militia's principles, members, or tactics." Do you have any questions about what this oath means or what might be expected of you if you join the Free Militia? If so, what are they?

Do you have any reservations about making the commitments outlined in the oath of office? If so, what are they?

In your own words, describe the difference between an alert and a mobilization of the Free Militia.

Take a look at the four reasons given for alert and mobilization in this section. Why do you think it is important to take unusual measures to ready and prepare ourselves under these conditions?

What are your feelings about the "risks" of participating in the Free Militia either under peaceful circumstances or times of combat?

Do you believe that the Free Militia will be capable of holding its own during (or even being victorious in) potential armed conflict? Why or why not? What conditions would have to change to make victory possible or probable? How would or could your own participation in the Free Militia contribute to those favorable conditions and ultimate victory?

One of the rules of warfare is that "anything you do can get you shot, including nothing." If a genuine tyranny was imposed in the United States, you could remain a civilian, minding his own business, or become an armed combatant. Which way would you be more threatened? More of a threat?

Personal questions

Note: Answers to the following questions will help determine your fitness for service in the Militia in terms of loyalty and dependability. No space is given to write answers down because no records should or will be kept on your responses. They are strictly for discussion between you and your sponsor. Any notes he may take are only for discussion with his immediate superior and will be destroyed after said discussion.

How physically fit are you in terms of strength, stamina, and health?

Do you have any disabilities which might hinder your physical ability to serve in the Militia such as epilepsy, asthma, poor eyesight, etc.?

Have you ever been an alcoholic, a heavy drinker, a drug users, or a drug addict? If so, how long have you been free of substance abuse?

Have you ever attempted suicide, battled severe depression, or suffered any other mental illness? Describe the times and circumstances.

Have you ever been arrested or convicted of a crime other than traffic violations? Again, describe the times and the circumstances.

How nosey, talkative, and trustworthy is your wife? Can she keep a secret?

Can you name one or two references, besides your sponsor and known by your sponsor, who can vouch for your integrity, dependability, and stability?

What are your reasons for desiring to enlist in the Free Militia?

Main ideas of this section

The Free Militia is an independent, organized group of private citizens who are armed and ready to fight for their Constitutional rights and liberties.

For now, our purpose is not to raise a full-scale army but to put things in motion and prepare to readily do so if and when circumstances require it.

An alert is a level of readiness that is not convenient in everyday life. Mobilization is a level of readiness totally incompatible with daily life.

The very acts by the government that will cause the Free Militia to rise up will also arouse the general public to resist and seek skilled leadership.

The drafted soldier is motivated to survive until his tour of duty is up. The career soldier is motivated by promotions in rank and higher salaries. The patriotic volunteer is motivated to win for the sake of a higher cause.


2.2 Equipping yourself for the Free Militia
".... millions of people armed in the holy cause of liberty, and in such a country as that which we possess, are invincible by any force which our enemy can send against us.... The battle, sir, is not to the strong alone: it is to the vigilant, the active, the brave." -- Patrick Henry, March 23, 1775

"To that end, I intend to arm myself." -- From the oath of office for the Free Militia

2.2.1 Choose your weapon!

As a minuteman in the Free Militia, you are responsible for arming and equipping yourself. Your first priority, of course, is to effectively arm yourself. All firearms have their place. Some are good for hunting, some for plinking and target shooting, some for self-defense. But only a few are really effective combat weapons.

When selecting a firearm, remember that you are a member of a team, not a loner. It is therefore to your advantage to select a weapon that is more or less standard in your unit. This will facilitate exchanging ammunition, magazines, and even spare parts when supplies are limited. You are also preparing for combat, not hunting or personal defense. Thus, hunting rifles, shotguns, and handguns are generally (but not always; see below) undesirable weapons. Ideally your weapon should be a medium- to high-power semi-automatic (automatic only if licensed) rifle with a detachable magazine. The following are suggested firearms with their pros and cons.

The weapon of choice

The Ruger Mini-14 is the ideal rifle for service in the Free Militia.

For a standard, inexpensive, effective, dependable, and versatile combat rifle, you will be hard-pressed to do much better than the Ruger Mini-14!

Of course, not everyone in the Militia will be able to find a Mini-14. Some diversification is both inevitable (since many recruits will already be armed) and useful. So, there are several alternatives to the Mini-14.

All-around combat rifles (in the order of my preference)

Specialized combat weapons (generally not recommended)

Remember, the potential enemy will be well-trained, heavily armed, and probably protected by Kevlar body armor. Single shot, bolt and lever action, and light caliber rifles are virtually useless against such a foe as is virtually any kind of handgun. Of course, being armed with a less-than-ideal firearm is many times better than being totally unarmed.

2.2.2 Outfitting yourself for combat

While your gun is important, it is useless without magazines and ammunition and virtually useless without other equipment. Consequently the minimum necessary equipment for a Free Militia minuteman is as follows.

QuantityDescriptionCost
1semi-automatic Mini-14 rifle (alternatives include the M-1 carbine, AR-15, or M-14 in that order).$500
430-round magazines (this is a minimum, 8 or 10 magazines would be better). Smaller capacity magazines need to be reloaded too often. Larger capacity magazines are more prone to jamming. You must be able to carry at least 100 to 120 rounds of ammunition ready to fire.$100
1000rounds of full metal jacket ammunition compatible with your rifle. The more ammunition the better. It will probably be the hardest thing to supply or replace in a pinch. Avoid hollow point and soft point cartridges since these are not permitted by the Geneva Accords.$250
1-2magazine pouches to carry your magazines conveniently. Be sure your pouches are compatible with your magazines and are green or camouflaged so they are inconspicuous.$10
1pistol belt for carrying your gear like magazines and a canteen.$7
1pair of combat suspenders (either the "Y"-load or "H"- load design). Without suspenders, the weight of all your gear loaded on your pistol belt will pull down your belt, especially when running and jumping.$8
1water canteen. Even if you stay close to home and never have to "rough it" in the woods, you will need to spend long periods of away from running water. A full canteen will keep you from thirsting while you work or fight.$10
1rifle cleaning kit with supplies for your rifle. Ideally, you should have a universal cleaning kit stored in a camouflaged field pouch.$20
1woodland camo M-65 field jacket. You need to be uniformed since we will need to identify each other and since clear identification and open carrying of weapons are two of the requirements for combatants recognized by the Geneva Accords. It is unlikely that the U.S. Army will be the primary enemy. Moreover, army uniforms are readily available and inexpensive at military surplus outlets. Thus an army field jacket is our choice. The woodland camouflage pattern is preferred since in buildings, no camouflage is needed while outside, there will be many trees, bushes, and grassy areas (even within our community) which will afford concealment.$55
1woodland camo trousers. Obviously the bottom half of the body needs to be uniformed and camouflaged as much as the top. The rationale for the woodland pattern is the same as that for the field jacket.$25
1pair of army boots or equivalent will protect your feet from the elements, mud, and sharp objects while providing a good footing.$50
Total approximate cost of necessary equipment as of 1994$1035

I know this may seem like a lot of money. But it is a small price to pay for your liberties and for your life!

The previous list is the bare minimum for outfitting yourself. With this equipment you can basically shoot, hide, move, and take care of your gun. Many desirable items are neglected. No provision is made for survival in the wilderness. Consequently, if you can afford it, the following items are desirable to have. They are listed in their rough order of importance considering the probable enemy and circumstances.

QuantityDescriptionCost
1set of spare parts for your rifle. A few dollars invested in the parts that are most likely to fail will extend the life of your gun almost forever! Parts for M-1s, M-14s, M-16s, and AR-15s are readily available at gun shows. For the typical rifle a spare firing pin, extractor, extractor plunger, extractor spring, ejector, ejector spring, recoil spring, and hammer spring are sufficient.$25
1G.I. kevlar flak jacket. The current issue military kevlar body armor will stop most knife and bayonet thrusts, all shotgun blasts, and most pistol and some submachinegun bullets (velocities under 1300 feet per second). They will also protect you from mortar and hand grenade fragments. In Vietnam, U.S. soldiers would have sustained 40% fewer casualties if they all wore their body armor and helmets (and this was before the advent of the kevlar helmet). Of course, blunt trauma from bullets will leave welts, bruises, and perhaps cracked bones, but this is better than a loss of blood or life! This body armor can even be upgraded to Type III, stopping even .308 rounds with improvised titanium or steel inserts.Small:
$75

Medium:
$100

Large:
$150

1G.I. kevlar "Fritz" helmet. The old "steel pot" helmets are better than nothing, but will not stop anything with significant velocity. The newer "Fritz" helmets look like the WWII German helmets in form and, accordingly, give better protection of the ears and neck. Best of all, they are fabricated with kevlar and are capable of stopping shell fragments and most pistol and submachine gun and even some long-range rifle rounds (velocities under 2000 feet per second). Concussion from some bullets might leave you a bit dazed and do some internal damage. But, again, this is better than having your brains blown out. And of course, neither kevlar body armor nor helmets can protect you from high-velocity (.223/.308) bullets from assault rifles.$75
1bayonet or knife for hand-to-hand combat. While bayonets are rarely used in modern combat, you will need some type of knife for hand-to-hand combat and utility. You might as well get a bayonet since these make good fighting knives anyway plus give you the option of fixing them on the end of your rifle for special situations that arise.$40
1ballistic goggles to protect your eyes from wind, dust, and dirt flying in poor weather or in the heat of combat.$12
1gas mask and extra filter. While chemical warfare is unlikely, tear gas is a real threat from various law enforcement agencies. Israeli gas masks are not too difficult to get a hold of.$25
1winter camo field jacket and trousers. Since you may need to operate in the snow of winter, this would afford good concealment.$85
1various light camping gear like backpacks, tents, sleeping bags, mess kits, flashlights, batteries, and so on would be useful if you must live in the country.$140
Total approximate cost for desirable equipment as of 1994$500

For $1000 to $1500 you can outfit yourself for combat fairly well. However, there are some things that your cell will need as a unit even if every cell member does not possess them. To outfit men accordingly, each cell will need the following equipment. The equipment can either be bought by the man assigned to use it or the cell can pool funds to buy cell it.

QuantityDescriptionCost
1hand-held CB radio for communication with other nearby cells.$65
1pair of binoculars (7x to 10x) for observation and spotting.$40
1rifle scope. Note: Scopes are undesirable and too costly for the average minuteman. They are cumbersome in brush and slow the acquisition of targets in quick combat. Contrary to popular belief, they do not make a rifle more accurate! But they are useful for clearly seeing distant targets while sniping.$200
1practice rifle. Ammunition is expensive, so the cell should have either a .22 rifle or an air rifle with iron sights (no scope) to use for inexpensive target practice.$100
1general first aid kit along with other selected medical supplies.$40
1set of gunsmithing tools. This would include a set of pin punches, hammer, screwdrivers, pliers, files, rasps, hacksaw, etc.$100
2-4tri-folding shovels for trenching and field fortifications.$40

Don't go out and buy these yourself. Coordinate purchases with your cell so you avoid unnecessary redundancy and expense.

Of course, there are also some kinds of equipment needed at the platoon, company, and battalion levels. Some examples include:

Again, don't go out and buy any of these things on your own. But if you already have any of them, let your cell leader know so they can be put to good use if and when they are ever needed during an actual mobilization.

What you must do is be sure that you are adequately equipped for combat and contribute (time, money, or things) to the equipment needs of your cell.

It is admittedly expensive to adequately equip an individual or team for effective combat. But your Constitutional liberties and life are worth it!

2.2.3 Be careful how you buy

It is just as important how you go about buying the things you need to equip yourself as it is what you equip yourself with for future combat.

The last thing you want to do is to draw attention to yourself when you buy or leave a "trail" after buying. Gun registration records will no doubt be used to track down and confiscate weapons. Even though those yellow forms you fill out for a gun dealer stay with him, they are subject to BATF inspection and also will compromise your guns. The mailing lists and invoices of suppliers for paramilitary books and gear might also be used to hunt down gun owners. And don't forget about your checking account: it is an open book to the government revealing what, when, and where you buy. Consequently, there are several guiding rules you should follow when you begin to outfit yourself for the Free Militia.

You might wonder how you can possibly be outfitted given these four constraints. Actually, it is not that difficult. It just takes some time and patience. You may not have the money to buy everything all at once anyway! Here are some tips on outfitting yourself in a confidential way.

2.2.4 Sources of equipment and supplies

In addition to area gun shows and classified ads in the newspaper, there are several sources of firearms, ammunition, and gear in the area.

Look up "gunsmiths and gun dealers," "sporting goods," "military surplus," etc. in the yellow pages of the phone book. Write down the addresses and phone numbers for each listing in the space provided on the next page. As time permits, check them out to get an idea of what they have available. Shop around since prices can vary quite a bit from store to store. Even if you can't afford something now, this shopping will pay off in the future when you can afford to buy.

In any event, buy the priorities first. Don't spend a lot of money on body armor and high-tech "toys" before you own a rifle and ammunition!

Area sources of equipment

Name:____________________________________________________________________

Address:________________________________________ Phone:____________________

Notes on supplies they stock:_________________________________________________

__________________________________________________________________________

Name:____________________________________________________________________

Address:________________________________________ Phone:____________________

Notes on supplies they stock:_________________________________________________

__________________________________________________________________________

Name:____________________________________________________________________

Address:________________________________________ Phone:____________________

Notes on supplies they stock:_________________________________________________

__________________________________________________________________________

2.2.5 Discussion questions

What, if any, experience have you had in gun safety, cleaning, or shooting (i.e., hunting, target shooting, etc.)? What type(s) of firearm(s) have you used in the past? What type(s) of firearms would you say that you are proficient in? How accurate are you?

What firearms do you own? Are any of them formally registered with a government agency? Informally registered using the yellow forms retained by gun dealers? (You may opt not to write down the answers.)

How familiar are you with the firearms discussed in this section? Are you planning to buy any of the firearms recommended in this section? If so, which one(s)? How do you plan to acquire it (them) without leaving a record of you as the buyer? (You may opt not to write the answers.)

Among the firearms that you currently own or intend to buy, which one is your "weapon of choice"? Why? (You may opt not to write the answers.)

How much of the necessary equipment, if any, do you already own?

Do you intend to buy the remaining necessary equipment in the future? If so, how quickly do you plan to do so? (List in the order of priority.)

How much of the desired equipment, if any, do you already own?

Do you intend to buy any of the remaining desired equipment in the future? Which items (list by priority)? How fast do you plan to get them?

Why is it very important that you be careful not to leave any records of sensitive purchases you make like guns, ammunition, and military gear?

Please list the four principles of outfitting yourself confidentially.

Do you agree to follow these principles in the future?

Personal inventory

Note: The following is intended to assist the Free Militia commanders in planning. If you have any of the following items, your sponsor will make a note of it and pass it through to his superiors without your name. Thus, the commanders will have an idea of what might be available in a crisis without having any central records of who has what. We trust that you will freely make these items available when the need arises.

Do you possess any binoculars, field glasses, hand-held CB radios, first aid kits, or gunsmithing tools that you would be willing to let your cell use?

Which of the following items do you both own and volunteer to loan to any Free Militia "war effort" in the event that we must mobilize?

ItemTypeQuantity
Electric generators  
Ham/short-wave radios  
Laptop computers/printers  
Photocopiers  
Printing presses  
Shovels/picks/spades  
Chain saws  
Vehicles (trucks and vans)  
Fire extinguishers  
Medical supplies  

Main ideas of this section

For a standard, inexpensive, effective, dependable, and versatile rifle, you will be hard-pressed to do much better than the Ruger Mini-14!

It is admittedly expensive to adequately equip an individual or team for effective combat. But your Constitutional liberties and life are worth it!

It is just as important how you go about buying the things you need to equip yourself as it is what you equipment yourself with for future combat.


2.3 General organization of the Free Militia
"For I myself am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I tell this one, 'Go,' and he goes; and that one, 'Come,' and he comes." -- A Roman Centurion talking to Jesus Christ (Matthew 8:9)

"I voluntarily join the Free Militia, and I agree to obey its commanders -- to the extent that my conscience allows -- for the duration of my service in the Militia." -- From the Oath of Office for the Free Militia

2.3.1 The cell structure

In any military organization, there needs to be a clear chain of command to insure effective coordination of smaller units. At the same time, units must be capable of responding to the immediate circumstances without having to ask higher authorities for permission to "go to the bathroom." A good example of a sound balance between these ideas was demonstrated by the U.S. Marines during World War II. The discipline and obedience to authority in the Marine Corps is well known. Yet the Marines retained a degree of initiative and individuality not found in many foreign counterparts, due to their American heritage. An isolated Japanese soldier was not a great threat in the Pacific Theater because he was incapable of functioning without orders. Yet isolated Marines could still be quite effective, cunning, and ingenious in harassing the enemy, by improvising.

Obviously, this kind of loyalty to authority but capability to respond individually is essential to the Free Militia. However, the necessity for personal and small-group freedom and initiative is compounded by several factors. First, the potential enemy may be superior in numbers, meaning that Militia units could be cut off and isolated from other units. Second, the potential enemy will probably be technologically superior, either eavesdropping on or jamming our communications, leading to a different kind of isolation. Third, Free Militia commanders of necessity will have some public exposure as a result of living their private lives.

Even with wise precautions, this endangers command elements by exposing them to possible arrest or attack leading to "decapitation" of combat elements. In any of these situations, combat units of the Free Militia must be capable of carrying on the fight without support from above or beside.

The fundamental rule guiding the organization of the Free Militia is centralized principles and planning but decentralized tactics and action.

What is meant by this key statement is that the whole Militia must be committed to the same cause and coordinated in their joint defense of the community. Thus, there must be allegiance to a higher command. But specific tactics should be left up to the individual elements so that the compromise of a part does not compromise the whole. Furthermore, all training and combat actions should be up to the smaller elements, again so that isolation or decapitation does not render the smaller units inept.

The way a balance between these competing concerns is achieved in the Free Militia is to organize all elements into "cells."

A cell is a group of eight men who train and work together to accomplish a particular goal or task important to the broader purposes of the Militia.

We use the term "cell," because a cell is the basic building block in any living organism. Just as all life, growth and reproduction is based on living cells, all Militia "life" is centered around its cells. The identities of cell members are known only within the cell and by their immediate superior. All basic training is done within a cell. all codes, passwords and telephone networks are determined by and held in confidence within the cell. All fortified positions are determined, prepared and concealed by the cell. All combat orders are executed by the cell as the cell sees fit within its own context. So the Free Militia is its cells.

Why the cell structure?

Military operations must depend on teamwork. But the teams that comprise the larger organization must be small for several reasons:

Why eight men?

Cells ideally consist of eight men (plus or including their leader), because eight men can effectively and independently accomplish a wide range of military tasks, whether defensive or offensive, rural or urban.

2.3.2 Diversification of cells

While the cell is the basic building block of the Free Militia, there is, of necessity, diversity among the cells just as there is in the human body. One kind of diversity is found in a cell's specialty. For instance, although each combat cell receives basic training for general tasks, each one emphasizes and perfects particular skills needed for different scenarios. (The range of these specialties must remain confidential until you formally join the Free Militia.)

A second kind of diversity is found in the function for which the particular cell is designed. There are four types or functions of cells in the Free Militia: (1) command, (2) combat, (3) support, and (4) communique.

Putting it in human terms, some cells in the human body serve the function of a muscle while others form bones, skin and organs. But among those cells dedicated to making muscles, some are specialized as arm muscles, some as leg muscles and others as chest muscles. They do basically the same thing but in somewhat different ways and different places. So, also, Free Militia cells may function in four different ways and specialize in several ways within their function.

Again, there are four types or functions of cells in the Free Militia: (1) command, (2) combat, (3) support, and (4) communique.

2.3.3 Companies organized by cells

The cell is the smallest unit of organization within the Free Militia. All larger units consist of cells organized together under the same command. For instance, four cells comprise a platoon and are led by a lieutenant. Four platoons comprise a company and are led by a captain. This system is illustrated in the following organizational chart.

This chart shows the ideal strengths and organization of units. While all units must be organized into cells, the number of men in any particular cell or platoon may be more or less than the ideal, depending on how many men have joined the Free Militia at any point in time. Indeed, whenever a new militia is established, it is very unlikely that it will have the strength of a company or even of a platoon. Perhaps only one cell will exist at first. As new recruits join up, seasoned men will be promoted and new cells formed. Eventually platoons, companies, or even battalions (four companies), will form.

Assuming that a full company has developed, the manpower and ranks within the company would break down as follows:

Description of personnelRanksNumber of men
Company leader(captain)11
Company cell leaders(lieutenants)44
Company cell personnel(privates)28 (7/cell*)32 (8/cell)
Combat platoon leaders(lieutenants)44
Combat cell leaders(sergeants)1616
Combat cell minutemen(privates)112 (7/cell*)128 (8/cell)
Total company personnel161185
* This assumes that the cell sergeant makes the 8th man of the cell.

Explanation of company organization

Combat elements

Non-combatant elements

2.3.4 Lines and limits of authority

The chain of command

To avoid complication, the Free Militia does away with "sub-ranks" or ranks within ranks. Thus, there are not privates and privates first class, just privates. There are no first and second lieutenants, just lieutenants. There are no lieutenant colonels and colonels, just colonels.

Militia RankMilitia RoleUnit CommandedMen Commanded
GeneralCommanderDivision10701-12238
ColonelCommanderRegiment2670-3054
MajorCommanderBattalion662-758
CaptainCommanderCompany160-184
LieutenantPlatoon leaderPlatoon32-36
SergeantCell LeaderCell/squad7-8
CorporalMinutemanTeam4*
PrivateMinutemanHimself1
* A corporal does not lead a particular group. Instead, he is from time to time assigned a part of
the cell by the cell leader when it is necessary to split up the cell's assigned duties or location.

Promotions are made by superior officers. Any officer may promote men in his unit from two levels to one level of rank below him, provided there is a genuine leadership need for the promotion. Thus a sergeant may select one of his privates to be his corporal and a new captain may promote as many sergeants to lieutenants as he needs to command platoons.

Who do you know?

On one hand, there must be the ability to communicate and coordinate within the Free Militia. This capability must be maintained even when individual leaders are arrested or become casualties. On the other hand, there must be some insulation and isolation among elements of the Free Militia so that one part being compromised will not compromise the whole. Both needs are maintained with one relatively simple principle:

In the Free Militia, your contact and exposure to other members will be limited to direct lines of command and two levels of rank above and below.

You do not need to know your superior's peers since they have no authority over you. Nor do you need to know your own peers in other cells. You do, however, need to know your superior's superior for the following reasons:

Thus you must only have contact with those in two levels of direct authority above and below you.

This does not mean that you will never have contact with others in the Free Militia. Perhaps you have served with some of them in the same cell before advancing in rank. Or perhaps you will perform joint maneuvers with them. But you will not normally have regular exposure to them.

With this structure, two entire echelons of officers would have to be wiped out to sever ties between cells and the high command. At the same time, an entire echelon of officers (for instance, all lieutenants) would have to be captured and "spill their guts" in order to compromise the entire organization. If we keep a low profile and keep ourselves spread out, this will be virtually impossible for the potential enemy to do.

Who do you answer to?

Related to who you know is who you must answer to. Clearly, you must obey superior officers. Obviously, you can only obey superior officers you know. However, it is possible that you will know several superior officers through previous service in the same cell or joint maneuvers. What do you do when two lieutenants tell you to do two different things?

In the Free Militia, you are only responsible to obey those of superior rank who are in direct line of authority over you in the chain of command.

For instance, you are only answerable to your particular cell leader and no other cell leader; to your lieutenant and no other; to your captain and no other. If two superiors tell you two different things, respectfully ignore the one that has no direct authority, even if he has a higher rank. If both have direct authority over you, obey the one higher in rank.

The limits of authority

Assuming that orders come from a superior officer who is in the direct line of command above you, you are expected and required to obey them in all matters pertaining to:

Basically, you are obliged to obey any order pertaining to preparations for or conduct in actual combat regardless of how you like or "feel" about it.

You are not expected to obey your superiors concerning how you lead your private life, except as it affects your ability to serve in the Militia. Nor are you expected to obey your superiors when they order you to do something immoral (like shooting unarmed women and children) or unconstitutional (like shooting a criminal without a civil trial). And, of course, you may freely make recommendations to your leader when time permits. But when an order is issued, your own personal preferences and desires are immaterial. You must simply obey.

Discipline in the Free Militia

You will never be punished for failure in the Free Militia. You may have to endure further instruction or more training. But you will not be belittled or humiliated for failures assuming you gave it your best effort.

You will, however, be disciplined for defiance or disobedience. We do not, as a private Militia, have the right or authority to imprison or physically harm you (that is reserved for the civil court system). We do, however, have the authority to undo what we have the authority to do. We also have the authority to do what any citizen can do. Therefore, your superior officers have a range of possibilities at their disposal for disciplining your behavior as they see fit:

2.3.5 Discussion questions

Have you had any previous military or law enforcement training or experience? If so, please describe.

Have you ever had any leadership training or experience like starting you own business, supervising a group of workers, holding a political office or church leadership? If so, please describe.

What types of occupational or job experience have you had? Which type(s) of work do you like doing the most? Are you most proficient at?

In your own words, please describe what a cell is. Why is it so important that we be organized into semi-independent cells?

Do you have any questions about the general organization of the Free Militia?

The Romans often advanced on their enemy with their rectangular shields side-by-side, forming a moving, protective wall. With swords or javelins protruding this wall of shields, the Romans were virtually invincible as long as they stayed together. But if they would break ranks, they would expose themselves to attack, death and defeat. If you were a Roman soldier, would you be more likely to survive if you obeyed a "stupid" order along with everyone else, sowed discord and division among the other troops, or individually followed a "wiser" course of action like attacking a flank? Why?

Why is it better for you today to obey less than ideal orders as a group instead of doing the ideal thing individually?

In your own words describe when you must obey your immediate superior. Describe when you must not obey your immediate superior. In your own words, describe which leaders in the Free Militia you must obey and which leaders you should not obey.

Personal questions Do you have either amateur or trained skills in any of the following areas?

 

SkillDescribe
Martial arts/fencing/boxing 
Physical education/coaching 
First aid/CPR/medic/nursing 
Automobile mechanics 
Machinist/welder 
Gunsmithing 
Radio operation/repairs 
Telephone operation/repairs 
Private investigation 
Mail or package delivery 
Printing/wordprocessing 
Commercial art/graphics 
Journalism/broadcasting 
Public office or law 

Main ideas of this section

The fundamental rule guiding the organization of the Free Militia is centralized principles and planning but decentralized tactics and action.

A cell is a group of eight men who train and work together to accomplish a particular goal or task important to the broader purposes of the Militia.

In the Free Militia, your contact and exposure to other members will be limited to direct lines of command and two levels of rank above and below.

In the Free Militia, you are only responsible to obey those of superior rank who are in direct line of authority over you in the chain of command.

Basically, you are obliged to obey any order pertaining to preparations for or conduct in actual combat regardless of how you like or "feel" about it.


2.4 Secrecy and security in the Free Militia
"And I pledge never to willfully betray the Militia's principles, members or tactics." -- From the Oath of Office for the Free Militia

2.4.1 Enemy capabilities and countermeasures

For now, the existence of the Free Militia is largely kept a secret because we are a relatively small organization. If and when the Free Militia should ever "go public," our principles and purposes would become open to public scrutiny. Unless people know we are guided and motivated by lofty constitutional principles we might be misunderstood as fanatics, vigilantes, or even criminals.

But our personnel and plans must always be kept private. We cannot allow a potential enemy to know the names and addresses of our entire membership nor can we let them know how we intend to defend ourselves. Therefore, our personnel and plans must be kept secret to all those outside the Free Militia.

Of course, we are faced with a wide array of modern technologies and age-old tactics that any potential enemy may use to spy on us. For convenience, we may classify these methods of spying under the headings of eavesdropping, surveillance, snooping and infiltration.

Eavesdropping

Surveillance

Snooping

Infiltration

These are just some ways the Free Militia could be compromised to a potential enemy. Attempting to counter every one of these threats all the time would be expensive, complicated and cumbersome. Yet there are five simple things we can do as individuals and as a group to thwart them:

If every member of the Free Militia rigidly follows these five principles of secrecy and security, then the Free Militia will be secret and secure.

2.4.2 Low profiles and closed mouths

The best thing you can do as an individual and we can do as a group is to maintain the lowest possible profile. If a potential enemy does not even know that we exist or that we are members of a militia they will not bother watching or listening in on us. All the technology in the world is useless unless it is put to use. And it is only used when suspicions about you are somehow aroused that technology will be used against you.

Keep a low profile by not drawing attention to yourself, your actions, or your militia equipment. They can't watch you if they don't know you exist!

Equipping yourself

Storing your equipment

Training with your cell

Don't expose yourself

Of course, it does you no good at all to hide if you announce your location with a loudspeaker. So also it does you no good to keep a low profile in the Militia if you tell people about it.

Keep your mouth shut and do not tell anyone outside the Free Militia about your membership, actions, equipment, or plans. Loose lips do sink ships!

Recruiting new members

Holding your own tongue

Keep your wife and kids out of it

By keeping a low profile and a closed mouth, you may be saving your own life, the lives of others, and the liberties of everyone!

2.4.3 Decentralization and transience

The next best thing we can do is be as decentralized as is practically possible. They can't watch all of us if we aren't all together.

The less any member knows about the whole Free Militia, the less he can divulge if he is watched, overheard, blackmailed, or arrested by the enemy.

Decentralization among the cells

Decentralization in the Free Militia

A fourth key principle of secrecy and security in the Free Militia is to be transient. Change things and do them differently. Present a "moving target." Even if you are compromised, it will be difficult to track you if you keep changing the circumstances.

Try to avoid patterns. Don't keep doing the same thing the same way at the same time and place. They can't keep watching you if they can't find you.

Within the cell

Within the Militia

When someone leaves the Militia

Once again, the life and liberties you save by taking these measures may be your own!

2.4.4 Classification of documents

All military organizations must secure their plans if they are to surprise and evade the enemy. The final principle of secrecy and security is to maintain a system of classifying records, documents, plans and maps. By restricting access to the most sensitive information, it is less likely that it will fall into the wrong hands. This section of the Field Manual will be the last thing you read pertaining to the Free Militia that does not have some kind of classification or restriction attached to it. They can't read about us if we do not give them reading material.

The U.S. Department of Defense has three levels of classification. These are confidential, secret, and top secret. Anyone having access to classified information must have the appropriate clearance which is granted only after a fairly thorough investigation of the individual. But the right clearance is not sufficient to gain access to the information. A person must also have a "need to know." Thus, someone with a top secret clearance is not necessarily allowed to read a merely confidential report unless the report directly pertains to his work or plans.

The Free Militia also operates on a need-to-know basis. However, we do not have the resources to do a detailed personal investigation. Nor are the three levels of government clearance suitable to our situation. So for the Free Militia, your clearance is based upon your rank.

In the Free Militia, you are only cleared to know or access information which is made available to your rank and only if you need to know it.

Printed and written materials (like this Field Manual and maps) will indicate on the cover which levels of rank are cleared for accessing it. You are never to open or read any document that is classified for ranks higher than yours. Even if you have the rank, you still must not read it unless a superior indicates that you have a need to know. Inadvertent and intentional violations should be reported to your superiors.

As said before, the particulars of a cell's own codes, caches, meeting places, and so on should be restricted to the cell. As far as the Free Militia as a whole is concerned, the following guidelines regulate the general classification of materials:

When classified material is in your hands it is your responsibility to secure it. Read it only in private. Lock it in a filing cabinet or hide it when you are not using it. When you are done with it, either destroy it or return it to your superior. Never just throw it away! As a standard procedure, you should have a closed box or other secure location -- not an open waste basket -- to discard all Free Militia materials before burning or shredding.

Remember that information is classified whether it is written or verbal. So treat discussions of sensitive material as you would a document. Do not discuss it over the phone. Do not discuss it in the presence of non-cleared people whether they are in the Militia or not.

Where do you stand?

I have attempted to present everything I can concerning the Free Militia's purpose and organization as well as what is expected of you should you decide to join us. Of course, much has been left out for security reasons. If you do join us by taking the oath of office in the presence of your cell, there is much more that will be at your disposal in terms of training, plans, assistance and encouragement. But this must be reserved for the committed minuteman who knows and promises to carry out his duties.

So this is the end of the "information highway" for mere inquirers. You are at a crossroads, and must either part company with us or jump in with both feet. You know what the Free Militia is all about. You know how you will need to equip yourself. You know how we are organized and what authority structure you will be coming into. You know the basics of how you will need to maintain secrecy. Now we need to know something about you. As I asked before, are you vigilant, active and brave? Do you have a strong heart? The Free Militia is not for the half-hearted, it is for the lion-hearted.

Of course you are free to walk away from us without obligation. We have no physical hold on you. We have no legal authority over you. But I wonder if you can so easily walk away from our cause. Ideas not only can energize and embolden us, they can enthrall and captivate us. The lofty principles of Liberty are not easily forgotten by subjects nor ignored by tyrants once they are first tasted. How much less can they be forgotten or ignored by people like you and me who have lived and breathed them all our lives? How much less can the light of Liberty be forgotten or ignored by people like you and me who are seeing with our own eyes the attempts to snuff it out forever? The Free Militia is not for the short-sighted, it is for the far-sighted.

Hopefully you see the dangers on the horizon. Indeed, the perils to our liberties are already upon us! But perhaps you are inclined to run away rather than face them. Patrick Henry would tell you, "For my own part, whatever anguish of spirit it may cost, I am willing to know the whole truth, to know the worst, and to provide for it." Do you know enough truth, if not the whole of it, to cause you anguish of spirit? Can you see the evils of the "best" that can happen, if not the worst? Are you willing to provide for it?

The Free Militia is committed to providing for the worst. We have the cause in our favor. We have the means at our disposal. Do we have you? Are you ready, willing and able to "march" with us to secure the Blessings of Liberty for yourself and your children? If you are, take the oath and join us now!

"I, ________________________, promise to defend and observe the Constitutional liberties embodied in the Bill of Rights for all American citizens by example, persuasion, and force of arms if necessary. To that end, I intend to arm myself, I voluntarily join the Free Militia, and I agree to obey its commanders -- to the extent that my conscience allows -- for the duration of my service in the Militia and I pledge never to willfully betray the Militia's principles, members or tactics."

We are the few, the free, the Militia!

2.4.5 Discussion questions

Do the technologies and capabilities available to our potential enemy frighten you? Does the fact that such technologies could be turned against you by a "big brother" government give you a sense of urgency to defend your liberties while you can?

Can you see the importance of maintaining the strictest possible secrecy and security in the Free Militia? Why are such measures important to your own personal well being, liberties and perhaps life?

What are the five general things the Free Militia does to keep our existence, membership and plans secret?

Which of these security measures will require the most drastic changes in thinking, behavior and life-style on your part? Why? Do you think that you are sufficiently motivated to change? If not, how can we help you to change "dangerous" behavior?

Would you say that you tend to be flamboyant or low-key? Talkative or quiet? Boastful or humble? Habitual or spontaneous in your routine? Open or private about personal affairs? If any of the bold adjectives are fitting, these are characteristics you will have to change or temper with respect to the Free Militia. Do you see the need to make these changes?

How comfortable are you with the idea of a decentralized organization? Does a degree of independence and initiative among individual cells in the Free Militia give you a sense of confidence or confusion? Why? A sense of liberty or insecurity? Why?

Do you have any questions about what is expected of you concerning classified information?

What two conditions must be met before you are permitted access to a classified document? How must you guard such information when it is in your possession? How should you dispose of it when you no longer need it?

How do you feel about following orders from a superior officer? Is it hard for you to follow directives that seem unnecessary? Unwise? Risky?

Are you prepared to take the oath for the Free Militia? If so, what are your reasons for desiring to join? Fame? Fortune? Power? Glory? Adventure? Fear? Survival? A sense of duty? Something else?

"I, _________________________, promise to defend and observe the Constitutional liberties embodied in the Bill of Rights for all American citizens by example, persuasion, and force of arms if necessary. To that end,I voluntarily join the Free Militia, and agree to obey its commanders -- to the extent that my conscience allows -- for the duration of my service in the Militia and pledge never to willfully betray the Militia's principles, members or tactics."

Sensitive subjects and words

The following is a partial list of the types of topics and words you should stay away from when talking openly in public or on the phone.

Main ideas of this section

If every member of the Free Militia rigidly follows these five principles of secrecy and security, then the Free Militia will be secret and secure.

Keep a low profile by not drawing attention to yourself, your actions, or your militia equipment. They can't watch you if they don't know you exist!

Keep your mouth shut and do not tell anyone outside the Free Militia about your membership, actions, equipment, or plans. Loose lips do sink ships!

The less any member knows about the whole Free Militia, the less he can divulge if he is watched, overheard, blackmailed, or arrested by the enemy.

Try to avoid patterns. Don't keep doing the same thing the same way at the same time and place. They can't keep watching you if they can't find you.

In the Free Militia, you are only cleared to know or access information which is made available to your rank and only if you need to know it.


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