Black Belt magazine is now working on the layout of my new book to be released in the beginning of 2008. The title of the book is Defensive Tactics for Special Operations. This book concentrates on unarmed and armed attacks likely to be encounter by professionals: SWAT, ERT, HRT, SRT, Warrant Service teams, and military teams alike. Ever since I was on the Costa Mesa Police Department S.W.A.T. team back in the mid 1990s I’ve have wanted to do this book.
Since 1991 I have been a Defensive Tactics instructor for literally hundreds of units across the world. In this book I take my years of training and experience and put it into an easy-to-follow format. The photos, take by Rick Hustead are excellent – all 720 of them. For the last three months Jon Thibault, and then Jon Sattler, have been editing the text. Now the art department is working on the overall layout and the front cover.
Last week I had a phone interview with Jon Sattler. The staff wants to feature my book in the Black Belt Buyer’s Guide 2008, which is a tremendous honor considering they publish several books a year.
Just before this book hits the market I will announce it again in the NEWS and put it up on my online store for sale.
Larry Hartsell is remembered Jim Wagner
Jeet Kune Do instructor Larry Benjamin Hartsell, 65 years old, passed away on August 20th. Unfortunately, I just found out about it, but I would like to share it with you now because indirectly Larry was one of the building blocks in our Reality-Based Personal Protection system.
Larry was one of my Jeet Kune Do instructors going back to 1997. I took a grappling course from him at the Aspen Academy of Martial Arts in Colorado when I was 16 years old. He was a special guest instructor of Dan Inosanto, and was one of the original students of the late Bruce Lee, as was Dan.
What I remember most about Larry was how tough he was. He was big, strong, and could tie anyone up into a pretzel. At 16 years old he was like a giant to me. Yet, he was a very mild mannered man, and a very patient instructor.
Over the years I kept tabs on Larry, and he has been in several martial arts magazines and has made some DVDs. He loved the martial arts, and the martial arts community is going to miss him.
Police Writers Jim Wagner
It is interesting how my books and DVDs circulate throughout the world. Recently I received an email from Raymond Foster , a retired Los Angeles Police Department lieutenant, who informed me that my books and DVDs have been added to the Police Writers website. There is a section showing several of my products. Of course, you can find these same products on my online store as well.
2008 starts with Vancouver courses Jim Wagner
I, with the assistance of Dallas Johnson (Reality-Based Personal Protection Director of Canada) will have our first courses of the year in Vancouver (Surrey), Canada from January 21 to 25 hosted by the Triunity Martial Arts Studios. Guro Oneal, and business partner Mita Castano, were students of mine in August, and loved Improvised Weapons so much that they invited me and Dallas to teach at their facility.
I will not be having many seminars in North America for 2008. For those interested in obtaining their Level 1 instructor certification this is a good opportunity, and you can sign up online today on our online store. First come, first served.
A look into the YAMAM Jim Wagner
A few years ago I had the pleasure of training with members of the YAMAM - Israel’s top police counterterrorist team. Of course, one of the agents who I became a very good friends with is Avi Nardia, whom many of you know as the man who made KAPAP popular in recent years.
Just this week Avi sent me a great link to some YAMAM training. This is a rare video because the YAMAM does not generally like to be photographed or filmed:
A few months ago, before my recent trip to Europe, Avi had me write a forward for his new book that he was working on. This is what I wrote:
On February 23, 2000 I received a personal invitation from Major Avi Nardia to come to the state of Israel to teach the country’s top police and military defensive tactics instructors my Knife Survival course based upon my then emerging system Reality-Based Personal Protection system. A few months later I found myself at the Israel Police Operational Fitness Academy Havatselet Hasharon teaching a room full of professionals. I had always respected the Israelis as great warriors, and there I was, not only teaching them, but I would have the honor of knowing that several units would later implement my techniques and training methods that would also include the Israeli Air Marshals. After fulfilling my teaching obligations Major Nardia asked me if there was anything the Israel government could do for me. I said, “Yes, I want to learn your current shooting techniques on all of the Israeli small arms. Plus, I’d like to learn Israeli hand-to-hand combat.” An hour later I was on a live-fire range with a table laid out with Uzi sub machineguns, Galil rifles, and Bul pistols along with hundreds of rounds of ammunition, and Sergeant Uri Kaffe to instruct me. After the smoke had cleared Major Nardia introduced me for the first time to the original Israeli martial art of KAPAP (a Hebrew acronym for Krav Panim Le Panim, which is translated face-to-face combat). Like anyone who has trained with Avi Nardia I was impressed with his abilities and toughness. Although a small man in stature, he is one of the deadliest fighters I have ever met. Of course, his personal history reflects his warrior spirit: a parachute commando during the 1982 Israeli-Lebanon War, a Special Forces operator conducting combat missions across then enemy borders of Egypt and Jordan, and a member of the super secret counter-terrorist team YAMAM (a Hebrew acronym for Yehidat Mishtara Meyuhedet - Special Police Unit – a unit of the Israeli Boarder Police). When I met first met Major Nardia he was the lead defensive tactics instructor for the national police academy and an officer with the Israeli Army Reserve.
When I returned to the United States the first thing I did was to organize a training seminar for American police and military units in California. Once the interest was there I invited Major Nardia to come teach. He accepted my offer. Once stateside he freely shared his expertise on Israeli tactics, suicide bombers, and KAPAP. Participants at that first seminar in 2001 included the FBI, the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department, Orange County SWAT team, United States Marines from Camp Pendleton, and various other local agencies. As expected, Major Nardia was a big hit. Consequently, I flew out Major Nardia to the United States a couple of more time, but this time it included other states in the Union. As such, KAPAP started to grow within the profession community. One of the things that I really appreciated at the time, and it still holds true to this day, is that Major Nardia is a very generous man and he gives credit where credit is due. He was always talking highly of my skills and original techniques to others and even invited me back to Israel to teach at the famous Wingate Institute (the birth place of Krav Maga), only on the military side of the fence known as Baghad 8. This is where I trained a little over a hundred young soldiers and got to be a part of the Special Forces selection process in December of 2002. My second trip to Israel as a training was even better than the first because Major Nardia took me all around Israel and introduced me to the men who were the who’s who of the military martial arts community, including one of his own instructors Lieutenant Colonel Chaim Peer, the chief KAPAP instructor and well respected war hero. He also took me to important historical locations, like the Palmach cave where KAPAP was born when the new Jewish army was preparing for the Nazi invasion of British Palestine during WWII which never came. However, the skills learned would later be used against the British army and subsequent Arab armies. As Major Nardia and I were each going between the United States and Israel the civilian martial arts community was only familiar with one Israeli martial art at the time, and that was Krav Maga (a Hebrew term for touch fight) codified by Imrich "Emerich" Lichtenfeld, 1910 – 1998, and later modified by him in the mid 1970s, but with the additional help from combat veteran Moni Aizik, who was also one of Avi Nardia’s instructors and now a friend to both of us. In 2003 I wrote an article for Black Belt magazine about a few of the Israeli martial arts that I had personally trained in: Krav Maga, Hisardut, LOTAR, and KAPAP. Readers were surprised to learn that Krav Maga was not alone, and first heard the name “Avi Nardia” from me. Little did I know at the time that this article would create an even bigger appetite for the Israeli martial arts. After the article came out I called up Avi and told him that he should seriously consider developing a civilian version of KAPAP and teach it in the United States and Europe. Avi told me, “That’s an interesting idea, and I’ll think on it.” A couple of weeks later he told me that he was not interested. He was way too involved in his police duties and military obligations. To my surprise, about two months after our phone conversation, Avi called me up and said, “Jim, I think you’re right. I think that there should be a civilian version of KAPAP, and I need your help.” A few months later Avi moved himself and his family out to Los Angeles. He took a sabbatical from his police job in Israel, rented out his house in Netanya, and started teaching KAPAP almost as soon as the wheels touched down at LAX. It wasn’t long before KAPAP started to spread internationally… just I had predicted. Avi had a certain charisma and KAPAP was an effective “reality-based” system. Throughout the growth process Avi sought my advice on several occasions, and in turn I took advantage of his close proximity to my home and placed myself under his tutelage. When I officially formed Reality-Based Personal Protection for civilians back on January 21, 2003 I incorporated many techniques that I learned personally from Avi, and when I am traveling around the world teaching I always affectionately mention my friend and his contribution to my system. In this book you will find authentic Israeli military fighting techniques from a seasoned Israeli warrior who is not only one of the top police and IDF Krav Maga instructors of his country, but the one who single handedly brought the obscure martial art of KAPAP to the limelight. With these techniques and training methods your own martial arts skills will progress ever forward, or as they say in the Israeli military – kadeema! (forward!).
Copyright Jim Wagner 2003 - 2021 All rights reserved.