THE LEGEND OF THE "QUICK KILL"
How I Learned "Instinct Shooting" and Why You Should Too !
By James Keating
Many have heard of the Quick Kill method of rifle work. Someone will always mention it when ever men, rifles and combat are brought up in the same sentence. But, does it truly exist as a legitimate and recognized method of gunfighting with long arms ?
Or is it just a myth ? Could it be that this is nothing more than a long lived rumor carried over from the Vietnam era that never really even existed ? Personally, I think it was / is just a logical extension and continuation of the work that Col. Applegate and others started in the WWII effort. But, more on this later, on with the introduction.
After Comtech began teaching this tactical rifle method publically there were some people who went so far as to question it's legitimacy, as to whether we made it all up
or not ! Jesus ! This is pretty strange and short sighted of these folks. In fact so many people questioned the premise of Quick Kill training that we at Comtech actually began stocking the
official US Army Quick Kill manual to sell to clients just to answer their myriad of questions and to ease their minds.
Now we've provided a little background on QK let's take a fresh look at this highly valued classic means of aquiring true expertise with a long gun. Let's see what made and still makes
this the most deadly of all Personal gunfighting methods known in the world today, the deadly, practical QUICK KILL !
The BOOK THAT STARTED IT ALL
The military manual I mentioned above was not even the first book on this subject. The man who was responsible for the Military program was a US Citizen named Lucky McDaniel. It was the book "Instinct Shooting" by Mike Jennings which showcased the man and his methods which came first. Published in 1959, this modest book did not shake up the military or law enforcement worlds very much, but it did provide some great insight on using a rifle effectively and quickly at just about any given range within the weapons
ability ! This method was especially good for things that were moving (and possibly even shooting back).
Lucky McDaniel himself was an outdoorsman and avid sportsman. He grew up with a rifle in his hands and over the years he garnered an intimate knowledge of it's abilities as only a master marksman can. He recieved his first rifle at age five and by age six he was already an accomlished hunter.
By the mid to late nineteen fifties the leading mens magazines such as TRUE, ARGOSY and SPORTS ILLUSTRATED had discovered Lucky and his unique concepts on shooting too ! It was from this press recognition that his fame, his book and ultimately his career grew out of. It was then that his INSTINCT SHOOTING caught the eye of the warhawks and soon the Pentagon became involved. (Mind you, Lucky, Frank Connor and Jennings were some of the first who got the method of instinct shooting into a book form. The method existed long before this book was published (J.B. Hickok supposedly possessed such skills) but no one had taken time to put such info into a book form until Jennings and Lucky did so.)
Once the military brass got wind of this super shooting method and saw how easy Lucky's method of using the rifle really was (to learn and apply) they went hog wild in support of it ! Why ? Because at that time the Vietnam conflict was gaining momentum. America needed a means to teach men to shoot fast and hit the target, to win. The new, strange jungle warfare of "Nam"did not suit the American GI who was still molded upon the image of the old WWII dogface that had fought in Europe and Korea. This jungle warfare was a faster, more deceptive environment. In the jungle, one had to snap off a shot at a small target and be able to hit it, all the while being on the move. The "unexpected" was to be expected in Viet Nam, more so there than in any other place of combat we Americans had ever fought in before. Americans needed a fast, effective means to protect themselves not only in battle, but on the downtown streets of Saigon City as well. Along came Lucky McDaniel and INSTINCT SHOOTING. The rest is history.
This new means of weapon handling and usage that had just been discovered by the military warfighter crowd in one Lucky McDaniel was the answer to many tactical problems. They gave it and him their full support across the board ! Not only did the QK method begin filtering into the main stream military training, circuits, but it even came into the smaller groups like high school ROTC students. There was even a method of using the Govt. Colt .45 that hinged around this QK concept as well. That was somewhat experimental and only a few men learned the .45 pistol material. Oddly enough, not much of the brilliant QK material caught on with the soldiers as was expected it would !
Why is that ? Well, it takes self-confidence to employ the system that Lucky McDaniel espouses, perhaps that had something to do with it. A gun cannot be a foreign object in your hands when learning this method, it must be your friend. The recruits were possibly too young, too inexperienced and afraid to fully grasp the method. Who knows why the method did not take with the freaked out Vietnam crowd at this point ! I'll leave that for the historians to ponder.
But, QUICK KILL came upon the combat scene like holy thunder and then it just slowly trickled away from the public conciousness for some reason and then all but completely disappeared.
The ESSENCE OF THE METHOD
The Quick Kill method of rifle use is based around familiarity with your weapon (a rifle or any long gun). While skill, eye-hand coordination and other factors are certainly very important to the successful execution of the rifleman's duties, it is the working familiarity of that weapon/tool that allows one to fully grasp it's benefits. Owning a rifle, fiddling around with the QK principles and getting a few chance hits now and then is NOT going to cut it if you truly want to possess the magnificent skill that this system offers those who practice it regularly !
One of the great training concepts that came out of the Quick Kill (QK)
program was the employment of Daisy BB guns in the early phases of training. It's cost effective, safe and imparts the concept of QK very well. You see, the brightly colored copper BB is reflective. It's been called the "poormans tracer" because you can see it in the sunlight. You can see exactly where your shot is going. That is beneficial since one cannot see a real bullet in flight. The BB gun skill transfers quite easily over to real firearms. Here's a bit of QK trivia: Daisy Airguns marketed it's line of BB guns under the similar trade name of "Quick Skill" to show a relation to the quick kill interests, but to also avoid the taboo topic of KILLING. Not a good thing to associate with childrens toys then or now.
One of the aspects of QK training that seems to stick in people's minds is the shooting of small, round, golf ball sized targets out of the air. (Wafers, disks, ping pong balls, etc) This may be due to it seeming like an amazing trick to the uninformed. Actually it's all part of the brilliant step by step process that leads you to real rifle skill. While this unique part of the QK training curriculum is the one which gets the most media attention, the QK method also teaches one to engage traditional stationary targets also. This is taught in two steps as targets being on the hi-line of vision are different from those on the lo-line perspective.
Through all of this please remember the word "INSTINCT"...without that factor the method becomes worse than knowing nothing. Be instinctual, don't be frustrated, keep working on it ! I am not going into too great of depth about the details of the QK system. Why should I ? That my friend is up to you to seek out. Either learn more about QK via a Comtech seminar on the subject or through reading books like the Military manual and other resources.
Pickup as much as you can glean from the sources you can find and give it a go yourself ! Learning from others is a fast way to learn and we recommend it. But, experimentation also provides vital self knowledge (and thats INVALUABLE) ! As per the "Trick Shooting" of the small, ping pong ball targets out of the air, well, let me tell you a few things about that and the larger picture of Close Quarter Combat.
WHAT IS "GUNFIGHTING" ? Reality versus Non-Reality
Do gun handlers today have a warped vision of what a "gunfight" is ? James Keating say's YES ! Have we been led down the tactical trail of nonsense in regards to what is needed to survive a gunfight ? Maybe ! We need to look closer with fresh tactical eyes and open minds to discover our own, personal "truths" about this, (Be heavy on the OUR part, I speak for myself and Comtech...my truth might not be your truth, each man will have different, but similar truths. This is due to environment, religion and other factors).
Most gunfights occur in ranges from point blank out to ten or twelve feet. About two to three man-lengths. (Oh, stop whining Nancy ! I refuse to use those pesky "meters" when calling my ranges !) Since it is already well established that most gunfights happen in ranges that are so close that they could damn near be considered knife fighting ranges too, we will not labor that well known point, OK ? Since much of your defensive capacity in using a gun comes from it's availability, the DRAW is a crucial factor as well. The eye & hand coordination at such ranges are easy to aquire (sights not needed), hits are not that difficult to make, trust me. The rapid aquisition of multiple targets has always been tough for some gunfighters to master. I ask you, doesn't the 'trick shooting" of a ping-pong ball out of the air (as in QK training) or that stuff that gunman Bob Munden does seem logically to be better suited to real world CQB gun fighting than the ridiculous, two-handed, gunfighting bullshit that's being pushed on people today ?
Sure, get rid of the cowboy clothes, trade the single action revolver for a double action wheel gun or semi-auto and replace the Buscadero rig with a modern equivalent and PRESTO...a real gun fighting method emerges sure as hell ! Better equipped to gunfight in the modern world than you may think !
In fact, what the legendary McGivern, the Topperweins and Munden espouse in their trick shooting demonstrations is far closer to real gun fighting reality than is 90% of what most gunmen-lawmen today have been sold on as being "REAL" gunfighting. Ahem, SOLD being the key word here ! Commercialism, looming liability and simple ignorance figure into this equation quite heartily. They each have acted to curb, curtail and set back the workings of honest, effective gunfighting. All the factors then combined make for a low level, reduced effectiveness, mis-prioritized gunfighting method that damn near every academy, school and firing range in America has adopted as being "true". True ?
Todays gunfighting methods are lame when compared to those of even the recent American past. The hoax that has been played upon the American Gun owners over the last three decades has been a ridiculous version of armed self defense that is downright impossible for Police, Military or citizens to abide by or employ intelligently.
It's a joke and no one has spoken up and said so till now. Besides, it only works as it is supposed to about 15% of the time. How sad is that I ask you ? While every gun fighting school in the world claims to have the ultimate method....and that the modern gunfighting methods are at their highest state of development ever, they still cannot do the job they were commissioned for with any assuredness ! ??????
If the sighted shooting methods really work, why then are there such poor showings whenever shootings do actually occur ? Why then are there such chickenshit caveats looming over every move a gunman makes in surviving the gun fight today ? Ridiculous BS designed by idiots ! Overthinking 101 !
For a long time there has been a cadre of stoic individuals who have kept the torch of point shooting alight. Men like Col. Rex Applegate, Mike Janich, Jim Keating (and others) in book, video and magazines the instinctual-point shooters have presented their case to the public time and time again. But, the bigger voices of COMMERCIALISM shout them down. There has also been various people who have carried on the tradition via the avenue known as "Trick Shooting". As I mentioned earlier, it is Bob Munden who is perhaps recognized as being the most reknown performer of such trick shot work with pistol and rifle today. The public calls this gun skill "Trick Shooting", usually with a derogatory sneer thrown in. As if it were unworthy of even being spoken of in the same breath as real tactical training. Honestly, It is a well named method indeed and it can do the "trick". It is also the essence of gunfighting distilled. Don't believe me yet pilgrim ? Just keep reading.
I'm talking about the real deal, an armed encounter in today's world, no cowboy overtones. Just dirty, nasty reality and death in the streets. Think about it. If someone can (with any type pistol) make regualr hits on something as small as a golfball thats been tossed in the air (a moving & very small target)..then why couldn't they make the same lighting fast shot on an aggressor (that is five times larger than the golf ball) ? How do those folks who shoot stationary targets, pepper poppers and paper targets figure that they are closer to being trained in REAL combat than those who train otherwise ? Read Louis Awerbucks book "Hit or Myth", well worth the time ! These non reality shooters employ a non-moving target, one much bigger than a golf ball and they also incur massive lag times due to sight aquistion, stance allocation..(ad infinitum !) It simply don't add up amigo's, just no comparison.
(OK, reveiw some of Lance Thomas's shootouts on tape...what do you see ? In those Lance Thomas videos the people involved in the gunfight really look more like some very poor versions of someone who is trying to point-instinct shoot, but who lacks the formal training in such. You look and see. Only the cops use the creep-walk and stalk & talk, conga-line concept of gunfighting. Only cops use the two handed method of defensive type of gun work that ONLY works for cops (and even then fails much of the time). When the lame system does work it is because the police have the numbers (manpower) to cover one another's asses, they usually have their encounters from the perspective of being professional stalkers (All Law enforcement has become "Stalker oriented"). Their training and off duty behavior reflects this premise.
Training is NOT given from the perspective of a lone individual (who is being stalked or threatened), a citizen is often caught between criminals in the street on one side, and those men in blue on the other. Remember reader, the citizen has no radio, no backup, no shotgun in the crusier, no badge of gang affilaition, no bullet proof vest at their disposal as does the policeman ! Now, Do YOU still want to gunfight like a cop ? If so, WHY ? Get smart now or get shot later......
Gunfights are getting fiercer by the day !
QK is an unsighted method of gun play, both pistol and rifle are taught in the COMTECH version of it. Don't let media prejudice blind your critical tactical vision. I can't give you very much in a mere article, so don't expect it. Even books and videos are often lacking in force to really make the training stick for you. Yes, on my part my training took place many moons ago, I was trained in QK in 1968 and 1969 by Col. John Lynch and a Sgt. Russel Johnson. Both in M-14 rifle and Colt .45 ! I have never lost my skills since that time and that is no lie. It was part of the ROTC Officer Candidate Training Program.
I began publically teaching others this stuff less than seven years ago. I've kept it all in my head over these many these years and kept sharp with a BB Gun in my own backyard. It's confidence incarnate once learnt ! There is no other program in the world today that offers a lone gunman such a profound tactical advantage in such a short amount of time. There is no other program which can make an average man into a hellfire hellion of doom like the Comtech tactical rifle program can. You become as close as humanly possible to being a "one man army" with what we give you. This is the most awesome, gun oriented, personal combat method that has ever been devised. I shit you not. That's why it's not taught publically any longer.
It's so deadly in fact, the famous Oliver (Ollie) North went on a public speaking tour to strike out against such "point and shoot" training. Huh ? Even video games which espoused "point and shoot" aspects as part of their formats were targeted to be banned, the tactical schools which taught this method would be quietly closed. Hmm, those are pretty drastic measures to be taken for something that all the "experts" of today say does not work worth a darn, don't ya think ? Oliver North has backed off some for now, but the NWO never quits. They'll be back to rape and ruin again. Be ready bunky !
Yes, the old "Point & Shoot" crap seemed to work fine for all of these untrained, scared, inexperienced, dumassed school shooters didn't it ? Kids like those with the "Columbine mindset" don't seem to need years of law enforcement training or months on the firing range to knock down their intended targets ! They don't seem to need any particular special weapons or tactics to do so either. In fact, the highly trained cops, the violence professionals were scared stiff of these little fucks while on their rampage and wouldn't even go near'em till shit blew over. Hmm, the writing is on the wall people, we need to change or we're gonna die, We've been sold a phony bill of goods on the gunfighting thing !
I personally KNOW this method of QK works ! To avoid it or disparage it as some shooters have is just flat stupid, it's part of our heritage people, our tradition ! To say QK methods will not work only says to me that you are afraid of what I am and what I stand for. We Americans are instinctually drawn to the gun, we don't shirk from violence, don't ya know ? We used to be wizards with guns way back when, recall a feller named Sgt. York? Yes, all of us were, including women & kids too ! Then the destruction process kicked in from big brother and the media. Now, all that is left is a castrated, very bland, dumbed down husk of what we once were as gun oriented people/society. We have lost the way.
I'm going to change that soon if I can, let's get back up to speed, let's get some common sense back into armed combat. Let's take back what's our's before it's taken away from us forever ! If you need to fight and live, then learn this QK method today. Study the works available out there and see the light.
Once we establish the ground work for this method through our Quick Kill Rifle program, it begins to slowly grow into the other areas of your training as if by magic. Yes, the training is self replicating by nature. The body magically aquires the means to perform the abilities with a variety of weapons. It is, after all "Instinctual" is it not ? One step takes us to the next, soon the master gunman is staring back at you in the mirror in sheer amazement of what he's accomplished, every morning when you shave, the master gunman will watch you.. and you'll smile back at him-you. Come see us, learn what has been hidden from you (and why), become the American Gunman, master the Quick Kill method today and stay alive tomorrow !