Survival Among Humans



I am Selco and I am from the Balkan region, and as some of you may know it was hell here from 92-95, anyway, for 1 whole year I lived and survived in a city WITHOUT: electricity, fuel, running water, food distribution, without any kind of organized law or government. The city was surrounded for 1 year and it actually was a real SHTF situation. Our allies were our enemies from one day to the next. Today I’m prepared and share my experience on this blog.

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TV news and internet are covered with headlines like „shocking, captured Iraqis beheaded“ or „they killing everyone on their way“ and „prisoners executed“ and similar.

And folks who watch and comment on the news and videos who still live in „normal“ world without this kind of crazyiness going on, are shocked of course.

First comments are that those people and groups who are doing that are animals and they need to be „bombed to stone age“, or „they are not deserving better anyway“ and then goes „they are all same there, let them kill each other“ and similar.

While I would definitely like to see that fanatics getting „eradicated“ there, there are more things that should be considered.

Most of the folks are not going to watch video of that violence, because it is too much for them (like this video that „promotes“ ISIS), they will change channel, or simply open the page with news from the „celebrity world“.

People do not want to watch or think about bad things, people want to forget that, and yes, at the end there comes again that famous „it cannot happen to us“ idea.

  • Do you really think that when (not if) SHTF events would be much different in your part of the world?
  • Do you think that when collapse happens, you and people around you in your town will be somehow able to organize food distribution, security and safety for residents, and all those criminals and sick bastards will somehow disappear, and there is going to be new better society?
  • Are you under the influence of movies and you think that good guys win almost always and that there is justice and sense in everything?

I hope you do not because I highly doubt anything like this is going to happen anywhere.

Forget good guys and bad guys. Prepared guys win, they can be good or bad, or both.

Problem is in the fact that simply too many people are waiting for S. to hit the fan so they can go out and play their own version of God. Just ask yourself this question: Who is more experienced living in place without any law, criminals or regular folks?

Criminals, sick folks, small Napoleons, guys who suddenly think that they have solution for building new society without including morale in story…

There are guys who wait for SHTF to go out and rule, to take your food, enslave you, recruit your older kids, or to take your wife maybe for fun.

Maybe how and when everything happens in your neighbourhood would be different when SHTF then in those news articles that we talking about, but lot of things gonna be the same, lot of people, not enough resources, and fight for power.

It is often hard to imagine for regular people how nasty other humans can become. If you have been to prison, war or deal a lot with criminals you know better.

And again, I am talking this from my own experience. Again.

One day I had job, family, car, restaurants, cinema, girlfriends, I was listening Guns n Roses and was angry about last album of Metallica. Life was nice and good to me, I had problems but they were in the range of am I lazy to go and rent video tape, or just spent afternoon reading something.

Then BAM!

I suddenly realized that I am living among guys who are finding amusement in taking women and teenage girls to „rape prisons“, or kill for fun and not for survival. I suddenly realized that I was living all the time among whole bunch of weird sick folks who when SHTF just went out to have fun.

And yes, I heard and read many times „they are just different down there, they are all the same, let them kill each other, they are different“.

And I am sure that if tommorow SHTF in Sweden, there s gonna be folks who gonna write „oh, leave them, they are animals anyway, not like we here, they are different.“

It is the easy answer. It feels good to think like that.

But forget that, forget about image of „we are nice and decent folks here, and it is impossible to happen to us, these kind of atrocities“
Be prepared.

Whenever someone I know tells me about bad situation here something like „OH, it is gonna be OK, it is not gonna happen to us, situation will be better“ in that same moment I got strong urge to go out and buy more ammo.

Or whenever someone says to me „do not worry, we have system here, they gonna take care of everything“ I feel like I am gonna throw up.

Screw the system, you need to build your own system.

It is like people live in their own little pretty house. Outside you have monsters knocking on windows looking at the people inside but they look away. Facing reality is uncomfortable and most believe monsters never come in. Bad news is that closing your eyes does not make you invincible. You are just blind and more vulnerable.

Lesson here is, do not discount what you can learn from ongoing crisis half way around the world. I never expected people could turn into monsters all around me so fast, I adopted and survived, but you have chance today to understand this and be prepared for this.

More about this in my course and please add your comments below.

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25 Responses

  1. Thank you Selco for reminding us of this. If it weren’t for the fear of the law catching them, a lot of people would commit some heinous crimes, just because they can and get away with it, now that law does not exist any more.

  2. Awesome info as always Selco. My father has always taught me that humanity is not civilized, we will revert to animals at a moments notice. Heck even family members can turn into sick animals that do what you mentioned in SHTF.

    As for the sicko’s that think they will take my wife for fun…. She’s armed and a whole lot better at head-shots than I am.

    1. Your father was right, there is simply thin layer of civilization and humanity, when that layer is gone because some hard events (SHTF) only then you see true nature. And it is bad mostly.

  3. Thanks again Selco. I think this lesson is one of the most important. I lived 3 years in Baghdad (2007 to 2010) and it seemed that death could not be satisfied. Every day there were over a hundred bodies found in Baghdad streets, ditches, crop fields, and floating down the Euphrates and Tigres. In many places of the city, the chaos and hate was so thick you could feel it in the air. And there were a lot of sick SOB’s (we were FOOLS to topple Saddam). I learned in Baghdad that chaos and evil shit is the main denominator of mankind and that civilization is a periodic facade that grows like a field of flowers after a spring rain….but is burned and killed so easily. Then it is a very, very long time until the flowers grow again – if at all. You are so correct – ignorance and stupidity rules amongst the spoiled western elite. There were once many wealthy people who lived like kings in Baghdad….but their bodies floated down the rivers just the same.

  4. Right on the money my friends … for now anyway. I wonder how many of us right here in SHTFSchool are all guns an no groceries. New preppers and survivalists usually buy guns before food storage. Guns are cool. Guns are sexy. Food storage … not so much. But will those who have only firearms and no food or fuel to keep warm and cook with do when their meager food supply runs out? You know that one of the oldest and most oft-used jokes among Mormons is? “It’s OK bishop … I don’t need any food storage, I have a ward list and a 12 gauge.” They think they are clever … like came up with some original thought or something. But it’s human nature folks. As soon as people with loved ones are hungry and see those they love hungry, you aren’t dealing with “civilized” people anymore. You’re dealing starving primates of the genus homo. And hungry, angry hominids have a capacity for depravity, bloodlust, deceit, cannibalism, treachery and every other heinous adjective you can think of. In fact when we bestow those traits on other species we even have vocabulary to describe it. We call it anthropomorphism or personification. I don’t care what country you live in. You can buy into some ethnocentric BS that your culture is the most civilized and that less-similar cultures are less civilized and more civilized cultures are more civilized, but as soon as the fecal matter hits the fan, as we like to say, if you keep thinking that way some other “civilized” hominid is going to be walking around with head on a stick, wearing your skin and chewing on you damn calf like a turkey drumstick. Simple as that.

  5. The first time, I was stunned, and thought it was just a fluke. The second time, I was still surprised, but I realized then that people only wear a thin veneer of civilization, and they can shed it faster than you think. Now, I just assume everyone is savage, and plan for that.

  6. Very well said my brother. North Americans and Europeans need to understand what really went on over in Baghdad and in Afghanistan. They need to hear it first hand and to understand even a tiny bit of it. They need to understand it is still going on. And that it is going on in Africa and South America and Asia and has gone on here in past and that it’s going to happen here again. They need to understand that the only reason it isn’t going on right now because people paid a price in blood, sweat and treasure for our freedom and privacy. But generations down road, as soon as the price is forgotten, it will be back. They need to understand that it’s impossible for the soldiers and families of one nation to pay the price for another like some kind of Christlike atonement. Because it can’t be given. If a nation tries to give the freedom and stability of a free democratic republic to another, they won’t value it. They won’t be able to understand the cost at which it came. But perhaps we aren’t so noble. Perhaps what any given generation of a nation really needs to understand is the alternative. They need to understand the depth of anarchy, chaos, suffering, hunger and fear that fills the void when mankind acts out of desperation when the thin blue line evaporates.

  7. Seems there are two schools of philosophy among preppers – there’s the “All Guns and Tactical” group (frequently recent converts that are still trying to figure out this new lifestyle) that focus on weapons and ammo (because it’s the easiest aspect to comprehend); and there’s the “You can’t eat those guns and bullets” crowd (often longer-term preppers, or those that want to sound like they are) that like to ridicule the “Tactical” group. Simple fact is, both groups are wrong – and both groups are right. I haven’t experienced to the degree that Selco has but I’ve seen a lot, some first-hand and much from those (like Selco) that spoke from first-hand experience. Unless I have misread or seriously misunderstood, even Selco puts a high priority on defensive ability. Of course guns aren’t everything, but if I could take only ONE item to evacuate with my family, it would be a gun. I have food stored – much of it – but the FIRST prep has to be basic defense, THEN the food, THEN get First Aid and medical supplies, THEN start packing in all the additional/optional guns and equipment and food and meds as you can or as they become conveniently available. After all, if your daughter and wife are “taken” and you are stomped to death because you had no effective defensive weapons, your 3 tons of food that took all your funds is useless to you. OTOH, if you spend $12,000 on the Best of the Best in weapons but only have the “average” 3-days of food available at home, your only available choices after you have eaten your (and your neighbors) pets is to become one of the (better equipped) Zombie Horde, or starve in your ammo bunker, or perhaps cannibalize those you defend against. There is a third (much smaller) group – the ones that have more medical supplies than a hospital; they can’t eat OR fight, but they’re safe from infection or dysentery!
    There is not One Correct Way; every approach to Prepping has advantages as well as weaknesses. The best we can do is try to stay balanced, get “a little” of everything as we can, until one day we take inventory and discover that we’re better prepared than we realized.
    One other note, pertaining to the “Bug-Out” crowd: If you decide to leave your dwelling behind, but don’t have an ABSOLUTE destination, you aren’t a Survivalist or Prepper – you’re a deliberate Refugee. There are circumstances that would justify deserting your location, but before you just Pack-&-Hike, give this some serious consideration – ESPECIALLY if you have a family.

  8. Much of what he refers to are “preppers”, survivalist and militias. These groups will turn as well as the “other” people in the world.
    Think about it
    Some militia guy has little man syndrome already, someone’s suffering from PTSD and starts wearing ears on a necklace and the “patriot” weapons trainer who’s entire focus is “.gov is bad” will ensure his rules are followed and that nat geo freak is eating folks cause that was the plan all along.
    Trust no one and that includes me

  9. It’s already the law of the jungle out there and this, even with a government control. On the opposite, it’s even worse with a government because not only he have the complete power over people, but he is also very violent towards them.

    Selvo has a point, always be ready for a SHTF and never expect your government to help.

  10. Very true! I have been on security teams that went into prisons and “cleaned up” riot scenarios. The lawlessness is truly overwhelming. The initial thought of, “Hey, you’re not supposed to do that” is the first thing that has to get flushed if you’re going to figure out what they’re going to do next or have any reasonable chance at deciding their next move so you have a tactical advantage. But it’s honestly the first thing a law abiding citizen thinks. It has to be. It’s the only “normal” thing you can cling to. But to think like the “insane criminal” thinks, you have to flush the thought. You have to get rid of the normal thought processes and think like there is no law. Then you’re just beginning to have an idea of what your adversary is thinking. What you consider “normal” is very, very relative. To some, normal is preying upon others. To others, normal is following the law and being an upstanding citizen. What’s your normal? Figure that out and you’re on your way to figuring out how you have to think because I guarantee you, it’s the polar opposite of what you consider “normal.”

    1. Good points Carpedebass. It is what I called period of switching to the new world, or new normal if you like. If that period is too long you have more chances to get yourself killed, simply because you are gonna be too surprised with events around you.

  11. I grew up in New York City, and in 1968 during the riots, normal folks turn to a** holes. I will never forget my father walking up 20 floors to get home during the 1966 blackout. He has a candle in one hand and his 45 in his other. The true nature come out of people. If they see weakness they take advantage. Now I am going to buy some more ammo.

  12. Thanks Selco. We have been dancing around this subject far too long without actually saying anything.
    During WWII American GIs started liberating the people of the concentration camps. Once that was done they hauled each and every person from the towns around the camp. The GIs made those folks walk through the camps and actually help with the bodies. A similar thing should be done with the villages and towns that support terrorism. Make those folks get their hands dirty.

  13. Here’s one easy way for a “peaceful, democratically normal Westerner” to understand why people act like this in crisis.

    I’ve been to India twice. My friends–normal Westerners–usually comment on how rude, pushy, aggressive, combative and self-centered average native Indians seem to be. They’re not like that for no reason, if they are. Try having to fight not for a SEAT on a bus but just not to get pushed out of your place in line to even get on it. Try moving down a street that looks like a river of humans without elbowing your way through it. Try figuring out how you’re going to eat today where there is no such thing as government cheese for you to lean on.

    People are people. Westerners can be afford to generally be polite and generous because we were born into a situation that gave us the opportunity to be that way. I guarantee you, if Americans ever have to face even the challenges that the average Indian on the street faces, it will be the Third Ring of Hell to live in.

    Western good manners is just like having the reserve currency. We think we’re special but in reality, our specialness will evaporate when the conditions that allowed it to flourish wither and die.

    Selco nails it. The object is not to be depressed about it but to face it. Americans can–and under the wrong circumstances will–be every bit as savage as any ISIS fanatic. The sooner that sinks in, the better.

    1. Yes, it is one more reason why when S. hit the fan it will be much worse in more developed parts of the world, then in third world countries or similar.
      In poor countries every day is struggle for something, and people do not have too much time (or need and will) to be “nice”.

  14. The distinction between good guy and bad guy is important, especially in terms of preparation. The good guy must prepare the mind for the decisions to be made when evil appears. The bad guy is in that position already. The cloak of the denial is comfortable and imparts a deep feeling of safety, actual safety is a result, it is the result of accepting that we are not safe and that we must set up the conditions for safety.

  15. Any chance a lot of that was what happens when a strong-man keeps a lid on a region for a long time while historic and tribal/clan hatred simmers just below the surface??

  16. We grew up hard and fast in the desert southwest around Arizona and New Mexico. Lived on beans and corn bread pretty much every day. Only once almost got into a gun fight with trespassers on the old mans land. As stated here in a lot of different ways, people here think they are entitled to so much and won’t know how to cope with the so little that lurks just around the corner.
    Chuck B is right, cover a lot of bases and look for more holes to fill when you are done.

  17. For some people it isn’t even a “…thin veneer…” It’s more like wood-grain shelf paper. As for me, I’m like the sheepdog. I’ll hang out with my flock, but I still have my teeth. That said, I have neighbors who avoid me…

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