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22LRs for Defense

You don't use a .22, .38 or a.45 pistol to kill a charging lion. You need a powerful rifle for you to be able to stop and kill the lion on its track. In other words, know the limitations of your firearm, and most importantly, KNOW YOUR OWN LIMITATIONS. - Civilian Self-Defense Thoughts

The Effectivity of 22LR as Defense Cartridge

How good are .22s, .25s, .32s for self-defense? But shouldl I also ask, how good are the .38s, .40s .45s, .357 magnum, etc for self-defense?

The answer is simple: It all depends on the situation, your level of proficiency with your weapon and your adversary's skill and training. There are so many conclusions that could be reached on the basis of evidence and reasoning on an armed confrontation or shootout, but what is clear is that none of these could be deemed satisfactory or elucidated beyond "reasonable doubt".

The Handgun Stopping Power

"Stopping power is the ability of a firearm or other weapon to cause enough ballistic trauma to a target (human or animal) to immediately incapacitate (and thus stop) the target. This contrasts with lethality in that stopping power pertains only to a weapon's ability to incapacitate quickly, regardless of whether death ultimately occurs.
Stopping power is related to the physical properties of the bullet, but the issue is complicated and not easily studied. Although higher caliber has traditionally been widely associated with higher stopping power, the physics involved are multifactorial, with caliber, muzzle velocity, bullet mass, bullet shape, and bullet material all contributing. Critics contend that the importance of "one-shot stop" statistics is overstated, pointing out that most gun encounters do not involve a "shoot once and see how the target reacts" situation. - Wikipedia

The 1972 Summer Olympic Incident

September 5, 1972 of the Summer Olympic in Munich, West Germany, will forever be etched in the memory of Israel. It was in the early hours of that day at around 4:30 a.m., as Israeli athletes slept, when eight members of the Black September Palestinian terrorists scaled and jumped over the six-foot high perimeter fence of the Olympic Village. The terrorists then proceeded to 31 Connollystrasse, the building where the Israeli contingent was staying in apartment -1 and apartment-3 and rounded up the occupants of the apartments. Several Israelis fought back causing the death of two athletes. Some athletes managed to escape by jumping out of the window. The terrorist took nine Israelis as hostages.

Standoff at the Apartment Building

By 5:10 a.m. German police were alerted as news of the attack was broadcasted all over the world. The terrorists, from an apartment window, dropped a list demanding the release of 234 prisoners in Israeli prisons and 2 from German prison before 9:00 a.m. Negotiators managed to extend the deadline to 1:00 p.m., then 5 p.m. but the terrorists refused to lay down their demands. Israel was unwavering too and refused to buckle down to the terrorists' demands. Confrontation looms as the situation deteriorated into a standoff.

By 5 P.M., the terrorist asked for planes to fly them and the hostages to Cairo, Egypt expecting that Cairo is a place where they could get their demands upon realizing that the German government was not going to concede to their demands. The German officials, on the spur of the moment, agreed but the official position is for them not to allow the terrorists and the hostages leave Germany.

Out of despair to end the standoff, the Germans organized “Operation Sunshine”. The plan was for the German police to assault the terrorist in the apartment building. It was a plan broadcasted in television news; where the terrorists, watching television news got the information they are going to be attacked. The Germans planned another alternative - to attack the terrorists on their way to the airport, but again, the terrorists discovered the plan.

A Failed Rescue Attempt

The terrorists and hostages were transported to the Fürstenfeldbruck Airport by helicopter at about 10:30 p.m. German authorities finally decided to engage the terrorists and deployed snipers who waited for their arrival. The terrorists became aware that there was a trap when they arrived. Snipers opened fire and there was an exchange of gunfire. One police and two terrorists were killed and then a standoff. The Germans then decided to use armored cars and waited for sometime. When the armored cars arrived, the terrorist knew it was the end. One terrorist managed to get into one of the helicopters where some hostages were being held and shot four hostages. Another terrorist jumped into the other helicopter and killed the remaining five hostages.

In the second exchange of gunfire, the snipers and the armored cars killed three more terrorists while three other terrorists survived and taken into custody. They were released in less than two months when the Black September terrorist members hijacked and threatened to blow Lufthansa Flight 615.

"The hijacking of Lufthansa Flight 615 was an act of terrorism committed by a Palestinian group that occurred on 29 October 1972 and aimed at the liberation of the three surviving perpetrators of the Munich massacre from a West German prison” – Wikipedia

Operation Wrath of God

The Mossad, the premiere intelligence agency of the State of Israel, was deployed under a large scale covert operation dubbed "Wrath of God" which was organized to track down and kill the Palestinians suspected of being involved in the massacre of Israeli athletes in the 1972 Munich Olympics.

Operation ‘Wrath of God’ (Hebrew: מבצע זעם האל‎‎ Mivtza Za'am Ha'el), also known as Operation "Bayonet",[1] was a covert operation directed by the Mossad to assassinate individuals involved in the 1972 Munich massacre in which 11 members of the Israeli Olympic team were killed. The targets were members of the Palestinian armed militant group Black September and Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) operatives. Authorized by Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir in the autumn of 1972, the operation is believed to have continued for over twenty years.[citation needed] The operation was depicted in the television film Sword of Gideon (1986) and Steven Spielberg's film Munich (2005).” - Wikipedia

Beretta Model 70 .22LR

Israeli Mossad's Beretta Model 70 .22LR

Img 1 - The Beretta Model 70 and 71, the preferred signature terminator pistol for the Mossad, the premiere intelligence agency of the State of Israel,.are compact single-action .22-caliber semi- automatic pistols that accommodate an eight-round magazine, weigh 17 ounces with an unloaded magazine and have a 3.5-inch barrel.
Picture credit: EN.Wikimedia.Org

Beretta Model 70/71 .22LR: The Israeli Mossad's Reliable Pistol

“Israeli Mossad .22 LRS: The Reliable Pistols of the Mossad The Israeli Mossad .22 LRs was the preferred signature terminator pistol for the Mossad, the premiere intelligence agency of the State of Israel.”

The following was culled from "Tactical-Life"

22 caliber Beretta 70

"The Beretta Model 70 and the functionally identical Model 71, both in .22 LR, have served with great distinction as the signature terminator pistol of the Mossad, the premiere intelligence agency of the State of Israel. The Beretta 70 was also carried by Israeli Sky Marshals.

Small-Bore Efficiency

One of the most famous incidents involving the use of a .22 caliber Beretta 70 “Jaguar” pistol occurred in February of 1969. After the 1968 hijacking of an El Al airliner by Palestinian terrorists, the Israeli government decided to dramatically increase aviation security by placing sky marshals on board. Eventually, the decision was made to place armed veteran Israeli soldiers aboard El Al aircraft. This Israeli sky marshal program was top secret and never publicized.

During the incident that took place in February of 1969, Israeli Sky Marshal Mordechai Rachamim engaged several heavily armed Arab terrorists as they attacked an EL Al airliner on a snow covered runway in Zurich. Despite the odds against him, the young Israeli sky marshal expertly used his issued Beretta Model 70 pistol to kill one of the Palestinian terrorists, moments before the Zurich Police arrived and took the remaining terrorists into custody. The three surviving male Palestinian terrorists received 12-year jail sentences for attacking a commercial airliner with machine guns and explosives that resulted in the killing and wounding of several passengers and crew. Sky Marshal Mordechai Rachamim became an instant hero at home in Israel.

Rachamim told the author that during this engagement at least two of the rounds fired from his Model 70 hit the mark and were responsible for one of the male terrorists being KIA—pretty good shooting, considering that Rachamim single-handedly charged the enemy position while he emptied his .22 caliber pistol at the heavily armed terrorists. Even though Israeli Sky Marshal Rachamim was only armed with a .22, far too much was at stake for him to miss his target. Failure was not on option.

In May of 1972, Rachamim participated in another daring and equally dangerous tactical operation involving aviation security when he and other members of Israel’s elite Sayert Matkal commando unit rescued passengers and crewmembers onboard a hijacked Sabena Airline flight at Lod Airport (now, Ben-Gurion) in Tel Aviv. At the time, this unit was under the command of Ehud Barak, a future Prime Minister of Israel

Effective, Compact Tools

During this operation, Rachamim and other Israeli commandos assigned to Sayeret Matkal disguised themselves as airline mechanics before storming the hijacked Belgian airliner. As the signal to move was given, Rachamim once again used his issued Model 70 to kill one of the Palestinian terrorists. A second male Palestinian terrorist was also gunned down.Once again the Israeli sky marshals and Sayert Matkal commandos proved that you do not necessarily need to be heavily armed with sub-machine guns and major-caliber pistols to stop terrorists and criminals…”

Verdict on .22LRs as Defense Cartridge

One hand no gun sight used training helps a lot

.22LR bullets: Can they really be a reliable defense cartridge for most of us? Please read the article here very carefully.

Self-DefenseThoughts Opinion

The use of .22LR as self-defense cartridge has been the subject of many discussions in firearms forums. Some agreed that it is enough to stop an attacker while others dissented.

But why was Israeli Sky Marshal Mordechai Rachamim able to successfully engage several heavily armed Arab terrorists as they attacked an EL Al airliner on a snow covered runway in Zurich with just a Beretta Model 70 .22LR? Mind boggling? Maybe not!

Here are the things we considered:

- Sky Marshal Mordechai Rachamim was an expert. He was a professional who had undergone several trainings on various facets of surviving an armed confrontation.
- As a well trained covert operative, he knew the limitations of any firearm; when and where they can be effectively used.
- He had a good knowledge of the element of surprise and understood when to use it to his advantage.
- He had a very good idea on how his enemies will react and he knew exactly how to counter it.
- He knew where to place those small .22LR slugs that will bring immediate incapacitation - like a martial artist who knows the vital points of a human body.
- He knew he had to deliver several well-placed shots to a particular body area to immediately neutralize the enemy.

Can we all do the same? NO! As a civilian with limited training, we can't! Unless you are a person fully aware of your defense/offense skills, capabilities and limitations. With this in mind, Self-DefenseThoughts still recommend that you GET A CONCEALABLE, MOST POWERFUL WEAPON you can control. A .22 may be fine in certain situations, but it is dubbed as an "EXPERT ONLY" weapon when used in self-defense.

Smith and Wesson Model 53 .22 Magnum Centerfire Revolver

Smith and Wesson centerfire .22 magnum

The .22 Remington Jet (also known as .22 Jet, .22 Center Fire Magnum, or .22 CFM)[1] is a .22 in (5.6mm) American centerfire revolver and riflecartridge.[1] Developed jointly by Remington and Smith & Wesson, it was to be used in the Model 53 revolver, which first appeared late in 1961.[1] It traced its origins to potent wildcats such as the .224 Harvey Kay-Chuk,[2] which ultimately derive from the .22 Hornet.[2] By 1972, the Model 53 remained the only revolver chambered for it,[1] while Marlin in 1972 was planning a lever rifle in .22 Jet.[1] The .22 Jet was designed as a flat-shooting hunting round for handguns, and it is suitable for handgun hunting of varmints and medium game out to 100 yd (90 m).[1] The 2460 ft/s (750 m/s) and 535 ft-lbf (725 J) claimed for factory test loads did not prove out in service weapons.[1] - Wikipedia

Type: Revolver and rifle Place of origin: US Production history: Produced 1961

SPECIFICATIONS: Bullet diameter:.222 in (5.6 mm) Neck diameter:.247 in (6.3 mm) Shoulder diameter:.350 in (8.9 mm)
Base diameter: .376 in (9.6 mm) Rim diameter: .440 in (11.2 mm) Case length: 1.28 in (33 mm) Overall length 1.58 in (40 mm)
Rifling twist: 1:10 Primer type Small Pistol (Boxer)

Inset Image credit: Author Ultratone85 - Wikimedia Commons
S&W Model 53 image credit: Author Ihogman - Wikimedia Commons