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SIG Advertising

Dammit!

THIS appeared in my email today (from SIG)!

(Obviously, they don’t know my about my financial condition!) ūüėõ

I DO like .45 ACP, and even though I never owned a 10 mm, I have shot them.  And I like them!

(I miss the SIG 220 I had marked West Germany!)

Sadly, until I win the Publisher’s Clearing House these are only a pipe dream…

(FTC РSIG has given me nothing.  Buy your own!)

HK HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS IN DEBT

(from TFB)

German Firm Heckler & Koch Reportedly ‚ā¨170 MILLION in the¬†Red

Via a press release published earlier this month, German gunmaker Hecker & Koch announced it had reduced its financial debt to a¬†mere¬†‚ā¨170 million (~$194 million US), thanks to an equity increase of¬†‚ā¨50 million via a capital shares increase. With this, the company will issue approximately 6.6 million new shares, backed up by a capital injection of¬†‚ā¨50 million, and assistance in refinancing its 9.5% Senior Secured Notes at significantly lower debt. According to the release:

These funds will be provided initially in the form of a shareholder loan to be converted into share capital during the share capital increase to meet the time line of the refinancing of the 2011 9.50% Senior Secured Notes. Minority shareholders of H&K will have the possibility to subscribe for new shares on a pro-rata-basis and on the same economic terms against payment in cash.

Being almost two hundred million dollars in debt does not necessarily mean the German firm is in dire trouble, however, as they have recently gained significant contracts that will help offset this burden. Chief among those is the French AIF contract, estimated to be worth over¬†‚ā¨300 million ($342 million US). The revenue from this contract alone could offset the debt of the company, which as of 2013 was pegged at slightly higher than the company‚Äôs net worth. How the company‚Äôs finances will shake out, though, isn‚Äôt easy to predict, especially given the outstanding $27 million lawsuit from Orbital ATK over the failure of H&K to deliver XM25 CDTE grenade launchers. Still, the company being in debt to the tune of the entirety of or higher than their net worth does raise cause for concern, if they cannot significantly offset or restructure that debt.

Now, I know there are those among you who will cry “GOOD!”, having suffered the slings-and-arrows of their notoriously poor customer service, especially in the civilian market.

Obviously, the civilians aren’t the only one’s who have suffered…

I have no skin in this game.  The closest I was to owning an H & K was a Century Arms H & K 91 knock-off, with original internals and furniture.  She worked and shot well (when properly lubed).  I liked her.

But, she went the way of the missing vault along with the rest of the collection.

I’m a capitalist.¬† If a company cannot provide proper delivery or customer service, they deserve to fail!

Perhaps, if there is another incarnation, they will have learned that?

A lesson from Colt?

H & K’s New Guns!

(from TFB, in part)

BREAKING: HK Releases SFP9 L, SFP9 SK, Maritime and Optics Ready Pistols

sfp

Heckler and Koch has just announced a few additions to their polymer pistol lineup. Known as the VP9 in the United States and SFP9 in Europe, H&K is adding the much awaited long slide SFP9 L and compact SFP9 SK variants to the current SFP9/VP9 offerings. Digging a little deeper, you’ll find a Maritime model as well as an Optics Ready model.

A few interesting features: One, there’s an option for either a push button or paddle magazine release. Two, optional 20 round magazines. Three, an optional manual safety lever.

Obviously we need to dig deeper into the specifications for other hidden gems. But the announcement will obviously elate H&K fans everywhere.

(the article here)

Is this a tempest in a teapot?  Does this appeal to the civilian market?  Is it even available to the civilian market?  And, most importantly:

They are H & K pistols, not known for their customer service.  Do we really want specialty firearms we cannot get repaired, should they need it?

“Why are they making these?¬† To sell, of course!” (Jeff Cooper)

What do you guys think?

They Got The Bastard!

MILAN (AP) ‚ÄĒ The Tunisian man suspected of attacking a Christmas market in Berlin was killed early Friday in a shootout with police in Milan during a routine patrol, ending a Europe-wide manhunt.

“The person killed, without a shadow of a doubt, is XXXX XXXX*, the suspect of the Berlin terrorist attack,” Italian Interior Minister Marco Minniti said. XXXX, who was the subject of a Europe-wide manhunt, was identified with the help of fingerprints supplied by Germany.

The Islamic State group has claimed responsibility for Monday’s attack outside Berlin’s Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church in which a truck plowed into a crowd of shoppers, killing 12 people and injuring 56 others.

….

XXXX served 3¬Ĺ years for setting a fire at a refugee center and making threats, among other things ‚ÄĒ but Italy apparently detected no signs that he was becoming radicalized. He was repeatedly transferred among Sicilian prisons for bad conduct, with prison records saying he bullied inmates and tried to spark insurrections.

SERIOUSLY?

Setting a fire, making threats, bad conduct, bullying inmates, tried to spark insurrections.  No signs of having been radicalized, huh?

What exactly does it take, Italy?

PS – he was 24, and had spent at least 3 1/2 years in multiple prisons!

*I don’t broadcast terrorist’s names

Here’s the full AP story.

BREAKING: Heckler & Koch Gives Up Selling Firearms To Non-NATO Members/Partners

(from The Firearm Blog)

BREAKING: Heckler & Koch Gives Up Selling Firearms to non-NATO Members/Partners

The HK416F variant adopted by the French Army. Note the specialized bayonet lug apparently designed for launching rifle grenades. Image source: sofrep.com

The HK416F variant adopted by the French Army. Note the specialized bayonet lug apparently designed for launching rifle grenades. Image source: sofrep.com

German firearm giant Heckler & Koch has finally given up selling firearms to countries that are not NATO Members or NATO Partners following years of concerted effort by the German government to hamstring the company’s export sales. Reuters reports …

German arms manufacturer Heckler & Koch will no longer sign contracts to supply countries outside of NATO’s influence because it has become too difficult to obtain government approval for such deals, news agency DPA reported on Monday.

The company, one of the world’s best-known gunmakers, will in future only sell to countries that are democratic and free from corruption and that are members of NATO or NATO members’ partners, DPA said, citing company sources.

It said this change in strategy would rule out deals with countries such as Saudi Arabia, Mexico, Brazil, India or even NATO member Turkey.

In 2014 the German Minister for Economic Affairs announced they the Government was determined to cut arms exports. The following year former employees of the company were arrested for exporting firearms to Mexico. Earlier this year a German court ordered a halt to firearm sales and transfer of technical information to Saudi Arabia.

Countries that neither are NATO Members or Partners include all of South America, Central America, Africa (excluding a few Mediterranean states in North Africa), most of the Central Asia and the Pacific region (including Philippines, India and China). This creates substantial opportunities for Chinese, Russian and Israeli small arms exporters who have been competing with H&K.

What is not clear is if civilian sales are included in this ban. H&K has previously exported consumer firearms to countries such as South Africa.

It is also not clear if the ongoing fine customer service from H&K will continue!/snark¬† ūüėõ

 

(H)ugs & (K)isses

HK-USP-45-lefttThere seems to be a love/hate thing whether or not your average gunnie likes Heckler & Koch (H&K).¬† Most folks seem to hold an opinion, and it’s either completely positive or completely negative.

(In the interest of full disclosure, I owned an H&K 91, semiautomatic knockoff.¬† Which means (maybe) as the receiver was NOT of original German manufacture, I didn’t actually own one (?)¬† For the record, I loved her!¬† She took all the original accessories, including magazines.)

Never had an H&K pistol, though…

I’ve known two guys who did.¬† One, the late, great Bob Hall, who owned (and carried) several P7 single-stacks over the years.¬† And one of my students whom I met @ TMCCC.¬† He had a USP in .40 S&W, which he bought before we had really begun training.

He liked it (having nothing to really compare it to.)

I probably would have directed him to another brand and caliber…

John Wilson (of wilsonblog) posted recently regarding his unabashed love for his USP, in .45 ACP.

He concluded:  But even with those minor problems the USP is for me. I trust my life with it every day of the week. That says everything. 

Of course, we have the counterpoint oft mentioned in the Internet, of their dearth of customer service.  And that quirky thing of how does one pronounce Heckler & Koch, without offending at least some folks?  (different opinions about with regard to proper pronunciation).

Would I own one?¬† Perhaps.¬† But, as I’ve no funds – even the lesser expensive on my list have to wait.

Where Do We Draw The Line?

Or should we?

Here in the United States, we pretend to have ‘Freedom of Speech’. ¬†The First Amendment and all that.

Of course, even that has it’s limitations. ¬†Child pornography for example. ¬†Yelling fire in a crowded theater. ¬†Criticizing a President, who happens to be Black.

Other countries, even those vanquished by us in war whom we rebuilt – not so much.

Germany, who placed restrictions on religion (Scientology).  And, until recently, politics (National Socialism).

I don’t know if this is backlash to the influx of Muslim refugees, who obviously include some terrorists, or the resurgence of anti-Semitic thoughts and actions rising throughout Europe (and the World) during the past 20 years.

Or perhaps the ubiquitous yin-yang battle between Jews and Arabs…

But something new has been added.  or perhaps re-added.

A copy of Adolf Hitler"s book 'Mein Kampf'

It’s one of the most talked about publications of the year. It’s not a new book. And it’s not even a well-written book. But Mein Kampf, by Adolf Hitler, which hits German bookshops for the first time in 70 years on Friday, is certainly attracting attention.

Hitler’s anti-Semitic tirade is seen as the forerunner to the Holocaust. But that is also why historians want it republished.

Hitler wrote it mostly while in prison in the mid-1920s, and academics say it helps explain the Nazis’ crazed ideology when they came to power less than a decade later.

As such, they say, it’s a crucial academic text. Not pleasant reading, but essential to understanding the Holocaust and Hitler’s brutal rule.

Surprisingly, some Jewish groups have also supported this edition.

This is an annotated, critical version, with thousands of academic notes.

And without this republication, the only hard copies available in Germany would be the pre-1945 Nazi editions, still found in second-hand bookshops or online. Those are certainly not critical.

The idea is that republishing Mein Kampf will help undermine it.

Until now, the copyright has been in the hands of the Bavarian government. But because 70 years have now passed since the the death of the author – in this case, Adolf Hitler – that copyright has expired.

Ban counter-productive

Germany could ban it. After all, the swastika and other Nazi symbols are outlawed here, under incitement-to-violence laws.

Germans see that not as an infringement of free speech, but as a way of guaranteeing it, by not allowing fascist groups to intimidate minorities.

But the problem with banning Mein Kampf is that this could simply increase its power.  (taken in part from BBC-World-Europe)

Is censorship bad, prima facie?

Or does Europe need to look it’s demons in the face, full-on?

And by extension, we as well?

Radical Religious Escalation

‚ÄúIf you will not fight for right when you can easily win without blood shed; if you will not fight when your victory is sure and not too costly; you may come to the moment when you will have to fight with all the odds against you and only a precarious chance of survival. There may even be a worse case. You may have to fight when there is no hope of victory, because it is better to perish than to live as slaves.”

–Winston S. Churchill

There was a time when a President, the military and the population of The United States (by and large) stood tall and fought for the rights and lives of others.  World War Two would be a good example.  Japan had taken much of the Far East, and Germany much of Europe, and parts of Africa.

And was systematically exterminating Jews, gypsys, cripples, intellectuals and homosexuals.

Now I’m not all about being the World’s policeman.¬† I would much rather be isolationist and let the rest of the World solve her own problems.¬† The problem with that ideal currently is radical Islamic fundamentalists have brought the battle to us.¬† It’s not just about 9-11, it’s about England, Syria, Iraq, Egypt and Spain, and anywhere persons are being religiously persecuted to the extent they are being raped, burned alive and beheaded.

The Nazis didn’t start with thousands of death camps, train schedules, IBM tabulating machines, and giant crematoria. They started small and worked up. It wasn’t until Kristallnacht in November of 1938 that they got organized enough to kill 91 Jews at one time.

ISIS has kidnapped 90 Assyrian Christians this week. They beheaded 21 Christians last week. They’re a new government, recently formed. They’re starting small and already talking about working up.

We can wait. Unless some miracle happens, we will wait. But we shouldn’t expect the outcome to be anything other than the obvious. It’s the same evil manifesting itself under a new name.

It will be the Jews, the Christians, the homosexuals, the intellectuals, Muslims from different sects and any one who doesn’t go along. They will die, deaths by every mutilating, degrading means, wiped out along with the ideas, thoughts and dreams they had. They will be erased. And when it gets rolling, we will not be able to say we didn’t see it coming because they are proud of it and they are posting for the world to see. (WARNING! Graphic images).¬† (Borepatch)

And our President claims it’s fundamentalist American Christians who are more dangerous than ISIS !

Now, I’m not a fan of those whack-jobs who protest at military funerals.¬† Or their fellow travelers.¬† And they claim to be fundamental Christians.¬† They even announced a protest at Leonard Nimoy’s funeral!

But, I’ve not seen any of then burn someone alive or behead them on International television.

It’ll only get worse before it gets better.

And offering them employment isn’t the answer, Mr. President!

"Round up the usual suspects."

In Loving Memory…