Before I start this blog I want to congratulate nine new USKMA black belts. The five and a half hour test has been likened to running a marathon with people beating on you the entire time. Black belts are hard to get and definitely earned when awarded. I couldn’t be prouder of Brannon Hicks, Alexis Acosta, Juan Acosta, Jesse Tucker, Brock Inman, David Inman, Travis Dillow, Russel Sweeney and Will Schneider!!

My USKMA co-lead instructor and law enforcement trainer extraordinaire Brannon Hicks showed a video during our Affiliate Training weekend of a police officer in a gun battle with a crazy man that was horrifying. The officer ended up getting killed. It was easy to see by the way the officer acted, the tactics he used and his other actions that his main goal in the gun battle was to not get shot. It was just as easy to see by the crazy Viet Nam combat vet’s actions, tactics, etc. that his main goal was to kill the officer. Unfortunately the criminal had the right attitude for combat. Attitude.

From Chuck Holton’s book BULLET PROOF. “Capt. Brian Chontosh, found himself leading a patrol through the small town of Ad Diwaniyah, south of Baghdad. In what seemed like a single heartbeat, his unit was hit with a coordinated attack of mortars, rocket-propelled grenades, and machine-gun fire. Chontosh knew immediately that it was a near ambush…and that he and his men were in the kill zone. Retreat was not an option. Dying was.

But Captain Chontosh wasn’t about to let that happen to his Marines. The love he felt for each of them instantly transformed into rage at those who would try to kill his men. He ordered the driver of his Humvee to plow directly into the enemy trench, and with a violence of action he leaped from the vehicle and attacked the attackers until his rifle ran out of ammo. He then pulled out his pistol and continued killing the enemy until that, too, ran dry. He picked up an enemy weapon and continued fighting. Then another. Then another. When it was over, more than twenty enemy fighters were out of commission and his men were saved.” Capt. Chontosh didn’t do what was expected. He had an attitude…one that he wouldn’t let his men die. Attitude.

Back in the day Mike Tyson was unbeatable! It wasn’t because he was the biggest or most skilled. He was intimidating to the point where most of his opponents got into the ring with the goal of not getting knocked out, with surviving. Mike’s goal was to knock his opponent out. Attitude.

Brannon also told of a law enforcement gun battle of a few years ago where several officers were shot. Two of the officers received very similar injuries. Officer 1 talked afterwards about how as he lay there all he could think about was his wife and children, how his death would hurt them and similar thoughts. Officer 2 talked afterwards about how he knew there were other officers pinned down and how the scum bags were still firing. He was trying to figure out how he could drag himself over to where he could do some damage to the criminals. Officer number 1 never went back to work but went out on disability. Officer number 2 returned to work and was on the force until his retirement. Attitude.

I have blogged many times about how techniques won’t save us if real violence should find us. No system or art will save us. An attitude of go hard, go forward, go now and go until the attacker is a puddle of goo on the ground will.

The first time my wife saw me run a Krav Maga test she was furious at me. She told me that I was an ass, a jerk, mean and didn’t care about people. I had to explain to her that I wasn’t trying to get people to the next belt, wasn’t trying to make people feel good about their accomplishments. My job is to make people tough. Tough enough to survive what, if ever attacked, would be the worst few minutes of their lives. An attack that, if they lost, could find their families dead. She understands now that my only job is to make people safe by giving them a warriors attitude! BE SAFE!



  1. Love this article. It’s like my instructors are always saying as well. It’s better to run but you better be prepared to fight to the death if you want to go home.

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