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Posted: 10/21/2004 10:01:24 AM EST
Israeli combat doctrine mandates the carry of firearms (handguns or rifles) with an empty chamber. The shooter is trained to jack a round into the chamber only immediately before use. With a rifle, this is done when entering a hostile situation (e.g. when entering a room to be cleared). With a handgun, this is trained to be part of the draw stroke. From what I gather, this is official Israeli government policy and applies to both police and military (and presumably civilians too).

I am sure that, with enough training, this can become second nature. However, for an equivalent amount of training this has to be substantially slower and more risky than carrying "locked and loaded" as most of the rest of the World does.

My question is this: why do they do it ? I assume some bureaucrat thinks its safer, but given the security challenges they already face, you would think this would have been reconsidered a long time ago. Am I missing something ?
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 10:03:22 AM EST
Never heard of that. Sounds kind of wierd, and I have a hard time believing troops going out into hostile environments carry with chamber empty. During the invasion of Iraq, my rifle was loaded 24-7 for about 3 months, unless I was cleaning it.
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 10:04:54 AM EST
For safety I imagine. But what if your arm is injured? Say by the first shot of the encounter, then you have to charge it one handed.
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 10:06:25 AM EST
They're IDF, if they do it, it obviously works.
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 10:09:44 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/21/2004 10:12:37 AM EST by motown_steve]
Because they are bad asses and they like to live on the edge?

ETA - Maybe they do it to tempt the Palestinians.

"Come on bitch, you know I don't have a round in the chamber. If you jump me, you know I have to rack the slide before I can shoot your punk ass!"
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 10:10:24 AM EST

Originally Posted By Combat_Jack:
For safety I imagine. But what if your arm is injured? Say by the first shot of the encounter, then you have to charge it one handed.



My buddy spent a year in the IDF, and never mentioned this. He did tell me that they trained to operate weapon bolts/slides one handed, and to do one handed reloads. Not very, tactical, and slow.

To reload a pistol, you knelt in pinched the pistol behind your knee so you could insert a fresh mag. You could do the same with a rifle to operate the charging handle. To charge the pistol takes practice, and is easier/harder depending on your gun and its sights. Basically, you snag the sights on your leg and push down vigorously.

I'd rather not get shot, but it is useful knowledge.
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 10:10:33 AM EST
[southpark]dum dum dum dum! [/southpark]
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 10:10:57 AM EST
To give the intifadas some time to pray?
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 10:11:29 AM EST
My guess would be that if you are trained to chamber a round as the first thing you do no matter what you will never find yourself pointing a gun that you only think is loaded.
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 10:11:43 AM EST
Because the Israelies are ultra-paranoid about getting their weapon taken away from them. This gives them time to react should this happen.
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 10:14:11 AM EST
It's so they wont's get sued by the relatives of whoever they shoot. It's probably why they don't reload they own ammo as well. They don't want to show themselves as blood-thirsty vigilantes ya know.
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 10:22:37 AM EST
What you describe is training for them to operate their weapons one handed in the event that they are wounded. My department teaches this as well.



Originally Posted By rifleman2000:

Originally Posted By Combat_Jack:
For safety I imagine. But what if your arm is injured? Say by the first shot of the encounter, then you have to charge it one handed.



My buddy spent a year in the IDF, and never mentioned this. He did tell me that they trained to operate weapon bolts/slides one handed, and to do one handed reloads. Not very, tactical, and slow.

To reload a pistol, you knelt in pinched the pistol behind your knee so you could insert a fresh mag. You could do the same with a rifle to operate the charging handle. To charge the pistol takes practice, and is easier/harder depending on your gun and its sights. Basically, you snag the sights on your leg and push down vigorously.

I'd rather not get shot, but it is useful knowledge.

Link Posted: 10/21/2004 10:25:31 AM EST

Originally Posted By trippletap:
What you describe is training for them to operate their weapons one handed in the event that they are wounded. My department teaches this as well.



Originally Posted By rifleman2000:

Originally Posted By Combat_Jack:
For safety I imagine. But what if your arm is injured? Say by the first shot of the encounter, then you have to charge it one handed.



My buddy spent a year in the IDF, and never mentioned this. He did tell me that they trained to operate weapon bolts/slides one handed, and to do one handed reloads. Not very, tactical, and slow.

To reload a pistol, you knelt in pinched the pistol behind your knee so you could insert a fresh mag. You could do the same with a rifle to operate the charging handle. To charge the pistol takes practice, and is easier/harder depending on your gun and its sights. Basically, you snag the sights on your leg and push down vigorously.

I'd rather not get shot, but it is useful knowledge.




If you ever watch Way of the Gun, they had to do some one handed reloading on some 1911s.
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 10:26:24 AM EST

Originally Posted By Quien:
Because the Israelies are ultra-paranoid about getting their weapon taken away from them. This gives them time to react should this happen.



Bingo! Also because they have, and need to train with, so many different types of firearms...although that is changing some nowadays. They deal with a bunch of reservests and with many civilians who get the training if they ask. Given different weapons with different methods of operation and only brief time frames to train people with different skills levels in an environment where they may need to use the training the very next day, this policy begins to make some sense. The only guys I know in the Israeli military are a couple of commando types I ran into at a school several years ago who told me they they carry "one up" all the time (chambered) but that most training there was with the empty chamber method. I also once talked to a guy who had done some advisory work with the IDF...actually, he said it was more about THEM advising him once he got with the real combat troops...who told me that he had never seen troops so rough on equipment as the Israelis...even to the point of throwing rifles and subguns onto the ground from the back of duce and a halves!
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 10:32:13 AM EST
The way I was taught to chamber a round one-handed was to be on your knees and use the back of your heel to snag the front sight post or whatever part of the weapon that offered the most traction.

Link Posted: 10/21/2004 10:32:40 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/21/2004 10:35:00 AM EST by StealthyBlagga]

Originally Posted By rifleman2000:
To reload a pistol, you knelt in pinched the pistol behind your knee so you could insert a fresh mag...



Off topic, but this kneeling procedure is actually a WEAK HAND ONLY technique (as I recall, it was called a "Jappee reload" or somesuch). Years ago, before we got all safety conscious, one would actually encounter this drill in IPSC matches. FYI, the strong-hand reload is much faster... just reholster, do your business, then draw and continue.
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 10:34:14 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/21/2004 10:34:56 AM EST by rifleman2000]

Originally Posted By StealthyBlagga:

Originally Posted By rifleman2000:
To reload a pistol, you knelt in pinched the pistol behind your knee so you could insert a fresh mag...



Off topic, but this kneeling procedure is actually a WEAK HAND ONLY technique (as I recall, it was called a "Jappee reload" or somesuch). Years ago, before we got all safety concious one could actually encounter this drill in IPSC matches. FYI, the strong-hand reload is much faster... just reholster, do your business, then draw and continue.



Makes sense, I have not really used or seen either one. But we are talking rifles, for the most part. My M4 holster is still in the works.
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 10:38:53 AM EST
Air Force policy is to have a mag loaded with no round in the chamber for the M16. Although I have heard of security forces sneaking a round into the chamber depending on their duty. I believe the reason is to prevent slamfire. I mean think about it: The same round is chambered twice a day for a year, maybe it could slamfire. That's generally discouraged.

For the M9 we always carry with one in the chamber.
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 10:39:21 AM EST
They have to be like the cool people in the movies and cock their guns after every sentence! Anyone have a pic?!?!
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 10:40:26 AM EST
Still off topic (what the hell, its my topic):

You wanna see something REALLY scary, put a weak-hand only draw into an IPSC match. Watching someone who has never practiced this technique is bowel watering. For those of you who CCW, this is worth practicing a few times (unloaded, of course) just to see how tough it is. From strong-side straight-draw carry, you can either reach around the front or round the back (depending on your exact carry position and belly size). Much easier from cross-draw (one of the very few situations where cross-draw is an advantage).
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 10:53:42 AM EST

Originally Posted By CAR-10:
Air Force policy is to have a mag loaded with no round in the chamber for the M16. Although I have heard of security forces sneaking a round into the chamber depending on their duty. I believe the reason is to prevent slamfire. I mean think about it: The same round is chambered twice a day for a year, maybe it could slamfire. That's generally discouraged.

For the M9 we always carry with one in the chamber.



After leaving a round in the chamber of our M4s for a few weeks, the primers developed dents in them from the firing pin striking them lightly. We never had any ADs, and never heard of slam fires in M4s, but I still rotated the mags and top round periodically just to be sure.
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 10:55:55 AM EST
It makes sense with an open-bolt weapon like an Uzi. If you keep the bolt retracted, dirt can get in and gum up the works.
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 11:03:09 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/21/2004 11:12:38 AM EST by Dolomite]
I'm sure there are plenty of line units that is not applicable to.

But for the average guy or gal:


Originally Posted By wedge1082:
My guess would be that if you are trained to chamber a round as the first thing you do no matter what you will never find yourself pointing a gun that you only think is loaded.



Yep, an important aspect of the "israeli method".

Also, since in some situations you never know what kind of gun your going to be checking out from the armory (AR, Galil, Uzi or handgun, like P-38, P-35, G-17, etc), this method lends itself to a certain commonality in training - get your gun, check it's empty, decock it (if needed), leave the safety OFF, insert loaded magazine, holster or sling. (KISS)

In terms of administrative handling, this is less likely to generate NDs as well.
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 5:55:53 PM EST
OK, all good rational reasons... anyone know why this is virtually unique to the Israelis ?
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 6:03:17 PM EST
I've seen a video advertising the Israeli made Hi-power and all the guys demonstrating the gun would draw and rack the slide. It makes no sense to do that with a gun that has a thumb safety.

Link Posted: 10/21/2004 6:08:15 PM EST
The problem is that the enemy is within an arms length of them. They dont want their own weapon used against them. Have you seen some of the crowds there?
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 6:10:07 PM EST
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 6:13:03 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/21/2004 6:16:10 PM EST by raven]
Safety, duh. That's why I carry with an empty chamber. I'm way more scared of a ND than needing to draw so fast there is no time to chamber a round.
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 6:13:35 PM EST
It's a fact. For pistols, they draw the weapon and bring it front and center. They grasp the slide with the weak hand as they thrust the weapon toward the target. This retracts the slide, and when the slide gets all the way back, as the pistol continues to be thrust forward, the slide is released by default to snap forward, and the weak hand assumes it's natural position as you come up on target. Once practiced, it's fairly natural, and I see an advantage right off the bat: there is no way to ride the slide forward and hang up first round into the chamber.

1. Safer carry with empty chamber, especially if weapon is taken away.
2. More positive chambering of first round.
3. Incorporated into the drawstroke.

It's wierd by our standards, but it is supposed to work pretty well.
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 7:11:37 PM EST
I have tried that method of carry with my Glock and after practice it seems to work pretty well.

But since I mainly use my H&K now for CCW, I prefer cocked and locked.

Interesting idea about weak hand draw. I think I will work on that this weekend.
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 7:24:26 PM EST
One would assume the Palestinians know this too... do they practice this maneuver as part of their gun-snatching routine ?
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 7:26:15 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/21/2004 7:56:11 PM EST by TheKill]
Perhaps I should have been more specific. Draw with strong hand, grasp slide with weak hand while thrusting the weapon toward the target.

For one hand chambering, it helps to have a rear sight that is NOT "combat", i.e. smooth. You need something with a blade to hook on your shoe or belt.
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 7:28:31 PM EST
I heard a story from someone in the US Army who was in Lebanon in the 1980s. I dont remember what exactly he was doing, but said because of political reasons, they wern't allowed to have their weapons loaded when they went out on patrols. As soon as they got out of sight, they all slapped in a mag and chambered a round of course. I thought maybe he said it was because they wanted to US troops to appear less hostile or something.

Anyways, sounds like an extrememly dumb idea to me.
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 8:26:35 PM EST
the isralies DO carry all guns on an empty chamber

i read somewhere that it was more of a tactical precaution, not a safety factor
it went something like this:

since all israleis are usually armed, they tend to have many different types/model/brands of guns
b/c of this, they train to carry/load empty-chambered, so EVERYONE will instinctively rack the slide to chamber a round and not screw around w/ figuring out how to cock/activate a weapon

for example, if you know how a glock works, and you carry it chamber loaded, you only have to pull the trigger to shoot (NO safeties, decockers, etc to worry about); h/w, if you come accross a DA Sig you might not know how the decocker, safeties, etc work

so to be safe and have a CONSISTANT method of getting a gun into action, everyone racks the slide to chamber a round and carry chamber empty and not worry about the controls

dont know if that is the real reason, but it works for me
Link Posted: 10/21/2004 8:48:02 PM EST

Originally Posted By AdrianUSP9:
I heard a story from someone in the US Army who was in Lebanon in the 1980s. I dont remember what exactly he was doing, but said because of political reasons, they wern't allowed to have their weapons loaded when they went out on patrols. As soon as they got out of sight, they all slapped in a mag and chambered a round of course. I thought maybe he said it was because they wanted to US troops to appear less hostile or something.

Anyways, sounds like an extrememly dumb idea to me.



Sounds like something my boss would do. The ordering you to be unarmed to appear friendler in a hostile environment, I mean.
Link Posted: 10/22/2004 3:37:51 AM EST

Originally Posted By ALPHAGHOST:
../they tend to have many different types/model/brands of guns...



What do they do if they are packing a revolver... leave the cylinder open ?
Link Posted: 10/22/2004 3:41:51 AM EST

Originally Posted By Sin_Bin:
The way I was taught to chamber a round one-handed was to be on your knees and use the back of your heel to snag the front sight post or whatever part of the weapon that offered the most traction.



Yep......that's why there are "Tac-Latches" and such!
Link Posted: 10/22/2004 3:50:17 AM EST
The only time I have heard of this was with their sidearms. And because that carry those pieces of shi'ite glocks, who could blame them?
Link Posted: 10/22/2004 3:54:49 AM EST

Originally Posted By StealthyBlagga:

Originally Posted By ALPHAGHOST:
../they tend to have many different types/model/brands of guns...



What do they do if they are packing a revolver... leave the cylinder open ?



I usually leave the hammer down on an empty chamber. I don't think it's really an issue with the newer guns but that's the way my father taught me amd thats the way the Air Force taught him.

Link Posted: 10/22/2004 4:09:33 AM EST
I saw an article in a gun magazine a few years ago regarding this issue

if i remember correctly the reason this is done is because they carry the glock pistol which has no safety lever. this makes it less likely you'll have an accidental discharge or that your enemy will snatch the weapon and use it against you.

obviously, if you've got a weapon with a traditional safety, this is unecessary, but they may use this method across the board to simplify training. i have never heard of this being done before with rifles, but i prefer to carry my glocks in this fashion, as the lack of a safety disturbs me.
Link Posted: 10/22/2004 4:20:02 AM EST

Originally Posted By JIMBEAM:
I usually leave the hammer down on an empty chamber. I don't think it's really an issue with the newer guns but that's the way my father taught me amd thats the way the Air Force taught him.



The revolver I have has a "transfer bar" that only allows the hammer to strike the firing pin if the gun is being fired but not if the hammer gets smacked while down. I can carry 6 in it with no worries.
Link Posted: 10/22/2004 4:44:53 AM EST

Originally Posted By Dracster:
It's so they wont's get sued by the relatives of whoever they shoot. It's probably why they don't reload they own ammo as well. They don't want to show themselves as blood-thirsty vigilantes ya know.



That's also why they only use American-made ammo. Don't want any of those Jewish rounds to be used against a muslim. It might disturb their sensitivities.
Link Posted: 10/22/2004 7:20:55 AM EST
What is the most useless thing in the world?

An unloaded gun.

I prefer my weapon ready to fire, and trust myself with a loaded weapon. If they are so worried about the training of their soldiers not being adequate, than TRAIN them. Don't limit them.

When my dad was in the Navy during Vietnam, he was the JO in charge of boarding junks on his ship (a minesweep). His dumb captain told him he could not chamber any rounds. So he said "Roger, under protest," went down, cocked his OPEN BOLT thompson and carried on. Never chambered a round, though.
Link Posted: 10/22/2004 8:24:36 AM EST

Originally Posted By pale_pony:
The only time I have heard of this was with their sidearms. And because that carry those pieces of shi'ite glocks, who could blame them?

I don't think they all carry Glocks. Some of their elite units do, but I'm pretty sure the rest carry Jericho(Baby Eagle) 9mms.
Link Posted: 10/22/2004 8:33:51 AM EST
I find this thread very... um... shall we say, interesting?


Every time I've seen a poster here mention chamber-empty carry in any forum, they get piled-on by the members here as if they had just proposed AWB II or something. But in this thread, the folks in question get a pass because they are Israeli military/police... like I said above, interesting.
Link Posted: 10/22/2004 8:47:22 AM EST
I've seen people being trained/practicing this method and at the time it didn't appear any slower than any other draw... As long as you've got two hands you're just as quick providing you're trained and practiced...
Link Posted: 10/22/2004 9:03:41 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/22/2004 9:04:28 AM EST by Boom_Stick]
Not a damn thing wrong carrying in the cocked-and-locked condition.

Imagine pulling your side arm and attempting to jack a round and some type of malfunction happens? Your stuck reaching for your secondary or your screwed.
Link Posted: 10/22/2004 9:37:16 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/22/2004 9:37:28 AM EST by rifleman2000]

Originally Posted By Girlieman:
I've seen people being trained/practicing this method and at the time it didn't appear any slower than any other draw... As long as you've got two hands you're just as quick providing you're trained and practiced...



Wanna race? I'll bet a trained shooter trained to draw and fire is quicker than someone trained to draw, chamber, then fire. And imagine if you slip up, and get a jam. You will die with a funny look on your face.
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