Strike - Hold!

THE blog for milsim and real-deal airborne and special operations forces - units, gear, training, history and more...

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Royal Marine receives award for counter-piracy operations

A Royal Marine whose ship chased down a pirate mothership in the Gulf and captured more than 30 pirates has been awarded a Queen’s Commendation for Valuable Service (QCVS).

Major Adam Whitmarsh, aged 33, was based on Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA) ship Fort Victoria as the chief of staff for the UK’s counter-piracy task group, and was part of the team that freed a Pakistani dhow and Italian merchant vessel in October 2011.

Both crews were liberated by Royal Marines boarding teams, with the pirates captured and sent for prosecution in Italy and the Seychelles.

Major Whitmarsh said:

“The job satisfaction from this deployment was immense – we went out there to chase down pirates and keep the sea lanes safe and that is exactly what we did.

“As part of my job on board RFA Fort Victoria I was in charge of planning the operations against the pirates, so to see it all come together and also see them sent for prosecution was a real highlight.”

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5.11 Tactical acquires Beyond Clothing

This is big news.  5.11 Tactical is a huge global brand, and Beyond Clothing is a highly respected specialist brand, so it will be interesting to see how this plays out.  But one thing is definitely certain – it has the potential to develop into something very cool indeed.


At this stage though, all we really have to go by is the official press release:

5.11 Tactical, the global innovator of tactical gear, today announced its acquisition of Beyond, a highly technical performance clothing company that builds custom American-made apparel. The acquisition enhances 5.11 Tactical’s domestic manufacturing, product innovation and rapid prototyping capabilities, while providing Beyond with an expanded infrastructure to meet the global needs of the extreme purpose built customer, such as winter expeditionary teams, alpinists, and Special Operations communities. Industry veteran Rick Elder has been appointed as president of Beyond, which will continue to operate as a separate division of 5.11 Tactical in Seattle, Washington, while Beyond Founder Scott Jones will move into the role of chief designer.

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Gerber De Facto Knife – Tactical Version

According my psychological profile I’m not allowed to use anything sharper than safety scissors*, so when we needed to check out the Tactical Version of Gerber’s De Facto Knife I had to let Scott “Slasher” Bain take matters in hand.

There have been a lot of great products that have come out of Gerber this year and the De Facto is no exception. Developed with veteran SF Operators, the De Facto is one tuff knife! Sporting a double edged spear point/serrated blade with full tang construction and a strike pommel, its more than able to handle anything or anyone that gets in its way.

The rubberized handle is nicely contoured and provides a nonslip grip while the knife is well balanced and feels comfortable in the hand. The polymer sheath utilizes a friction lock to keep in the knife in but ready to deploy at a moments notice. There is also a secondary thumb lock that can be used during high speed insertions to secure the blade as necessary. Overall it is everything I have come to expect from Gerber. The craftsmanship and attention to detail is second-to-none, making this truly a high-quality piece.

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The Agilite Longtail Advanced Ammo Pouch

If there is anything Scott Bain likes more than flashlights and knives, its pouches!  So when he got a chance to fondle the Longtail Advanced Ammo Pouch he was, well, let’s just say “excited”…

The Longtail is an awesome piece of kit made by the relatively new Israeli / American company, Agilite. They have expanded the concept of a mag pouch by combining it with an admin pouch and created one of the most versatile pieces of kit I have ever seen.

Not only is it innovative in design, which we’ll talk about in a minute, but is rock solid in construction. Double stitching is the standard here and the fabric is tops. The Multicam is as rich as ever with good color density across the fabric and matches my other Multicam gear.

The Longtail wove easily onto my Tyr pack’s beaver tail. The webbing meshed quite well providing a rock solid anchor taking up a 2×6 panel. The additional storage and outboard pockets. I have utilized them for my flashlight, multitool, headphones, chemlight…you get the picture!

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Bayonet Charge Foils Enemy Ambush

We featured this modern-day “They don’t like it up ‘em!” Corporal Jones on our Facebook page a few days ago, now here’s the full story from the Ministry of Defence, Defence News…

A soldier who led a bayonet charge over 80 metres of open ground through enemy fire has been awarded the Military Cross.

Corporal Sean Jones

Corporal Sean Jones, 1st Battalion The Princess of Wales’s Royal Regiment.
(Picture: Corporal Obi Igbo, Crown Copyright/MOD 2012)

The gallant tactical move by Corporal Sean Jones of 1st Battalion The Princess of Wales’s Royal Regiment (1 PWRR) reversed a potentially dire situation when his patrol came under attack in a carefully planned ambush in October last year.

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