SITREP 008 - The 3rd SFG Mafia

SITREP 008 - The 3rd SFG Mafia

18 Series Bag Company                    SITREP 008                   08 January 2022

We’re continuing to gear up for SHOT show. Apparently, the 3rd Group mafia caught wind of what we are doing as a company, and we received an invite to the Daniel Defense Range Day. It is an invitation-only event. Thank you, 3rd Group mafia, we owe you.        

This week, we conducted our booth setup rehearsal. We’ve purchased a backdrop, product stands, hanger-thingies, mannequins, and a tablecloth. During setup, I was thinking how funny it was that two goons were worried about getting the tablecloth right. We reserved a 10x10 booth at SHOT and we are fighting the urge to overcrowd the space with too many bags. 

While we were setting up a team guy came by asking to ‘test’ a bag. Normally, I’m sympathetic to equipment shortfalls as he only has one issued bag, and it doesn’t meet his requirement. His timing couldn’t be more terrible as we are in the short-final to our launch. We still squared him away, giving him a model that we’ve since made modifications to. An incredibly smart friend of mine compared me to Bane in Batman after I told the team guy that we had ‘tested’ our bags enough. 

“He thinks the CIF is his ally. He merely adopted the CIF. You were born in it, molded by it. You didn't see a normal ODA until you were a man and by then, it was only blinding.”

I was conflicted as he was from the Hard Target Company (HTC). My goal in 2022 is to outfit the entire Hard Target enterprise with purpose-built bags. They have a new mission that requires new gear. We know this because we have almost two decades of collective CIF/CRF experience. There are a lot of good options to get the kit where it needs to be. However, options are limited to top-fed, or center-loaded bags, in terms of load-carrying. 100% of the 18 Series Bag line lay completely flat, some have side-loading capability. Coupled with clear internal pouches, our bags offer modularity and versatility. 

Our intent to have all 18 Series bags lay flat is to maximize storage capability, provide fast access to equipment, and allow for the rest of the team to grab gear during high-OPTEMPO times. During my time in Africa, my senior medic taught me the importance of operator self-aid. Tactical Combat Casualty Care (TCCC) had just been introduced to the community and our team had become very proficient. Since I had been working in the hospital and he was on the range, guys needed the ability to grab what they wanted without asking or digging. We laid out what we had with no real ability to hang off the wall.

That’s where the idea of hanging our bags came from. To give everyone access to the required equipment. Lifesaving equipment doesn’t need to be controlled by one person. Like creating a breachers bag for charge construction, our 3-Day assault bag is for all-involved to grab what they need and go, the same goes for communication equipment. Our Senior 18D bag allows for the main compartment to hang on the wall while allowing the medic to still have a zip-off assault medical bag and fanny. 

 ///Key Leader Engagements///

I had the chance to text with a Colorado Congressional candidate this week. Tyler Allcorn is running for Colorado’s new 8th Congressional district. Tyler cut his teeth in 5th Special Forces and now lives in Colorado. His issues are very Red, White, and Blue, “I’m ready to deploy to Washington, DC to ensure every family in the 8th Congressional District has the opportunity to live their American Dream…cut spending and stop the runaway inflation… I’ll fight to ensure that all Coloradans regardless of their economic background live in safe neighborhoods… I’ll fight to fund our police and first responders so they can protect our neighborhoods.” Hard to argue Tyler’s points as I give my wife a specific GOTWA every time that I go to Denver. Tyler was born in Canada, so I’ve got a special place in my heart for him.

Also from 5th SFG(A), Joe Kent is a candidate for the 3rd Congressional District of Washington State. Joe’s platform is deep. Click on his website and you’ll see a platform that’s difficult NOT to get behind. “We must reopen our economy, bring manufacturing back to the United States, and gain energy independence…We need responsible forest management that preserves our forest and restores our renewable and sustainable timber industry… We must end predatory Chinese fleet fishing off our coast… I support modernizing our force to focus on our main threat, China… I fully support the men and women of our law enforcement community…” Plus he’s a former Warrant Officer, what’s not to love?

Even if you don’t support their positions, they’re 18 Series guys that are continuing service to the Country. That’s not to say that you should throw blind support, rather, we should encourage more to follow their example to do the same, regardless of the political party. The list of GWOT veterans in Congress is growing, for good reason. For these two righteous dudes, campaigning is all about fundraising to ensure they can go the distance. If you want to help, click on their websites, and donate. I wish them both the best in the upcoming elections. Next week, I’ll introduce another couple of GBs, Derrick Anderson, running for Congress in Virginia (another 5th Group dude…) and Jay Collins in Tampa, Florida (7th SFG(A)). Jay was in the senior medic class when I started the 18D course and I used to see him in the hallways. It is great to see him taking this next chapter on.  

///No One Left Behind///

I’ve submitted my Afghan friends to the State Department. Both families are still in Istanbul and waiting their turn to come to the land of the Great PX. I’ll help them figure out everything AFTER they get here but getting here is the priority. They’ve both served US forces for the duration of the Afghan War, we cannot leave them behind. 

I am leaving for SHOT late next week as the setup is on the 15th. If you are there, stop by booth 71108 and say hi. 

Always forward. - Matt

Next SITREP -  Preparing for SHOT Show (plan, prepare, rehearse, execute)

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