The UK Metropolitan Police have been carrying out training exercises simulating a Paris-style terrorist attack. The above photo shows two UK Police Officers dressed as terrorists, one armed with an AK, the other with an AK and a MP5. Controversially in Britain “the Met”, which polices the Greater London area, have told their officers that during a terrorist attack they should first neutralize nearby terrorists before helping wounded civilians and

Seems like a sensible course of action.

Thanks to Trev for sharing.



  • KestrelBike

    Damn right they should neutralize threats first.

    • TheNotoriousIUD

      Yep, cant very well get the hostages and wounded out with people shooting at you.

      • Grindstone50k

        Just do it the Russian way. Neutralize everything.

        Great success!

        • TheNotoriousIUD

          Except clean up is a b-tch.

    • whskee

      Reminds me of my old trainer screaming ‘Bullets are the best medicine!’ in the back of my head even all these years later. Some lessons stick with you.

    • nadnerbus

      Right? How is that controversial in the slightest? Watching TV right now where a cop at the press conference described how he had to bypass gravely injured people crying out for help to continue sweeping the building. That can’t be easy, but it is the obviously right thing to do.

    • JLR84

      In some regards active shooter response in the US is heading in the opposite direction. It used to be that medical personnel would not enter a scene until it was fully secured, and police would rarely ever offer emergency medical care.

      More cops are learning basic tactical medicine, and more EMTs are preparing to go into “warm zones”. Basically instead of waiting for police to secure the entire scene, going in behind the first wave of cops to rescue people from the cleared areas.

      • tolk

        Maryland EMT here – definitely no standing orders in my county to enter “warm zones”

  • TheNotoriousIUD

    Jeez, I hope thats another gun down the front of that terrorists pants.

    • UKShuggy

      The Met would have been using Simunitions in the exercise – in fact you can see the blue muzzle attachment on the MP-5 (the AKs are probably firing blanks). Therefore the wearing of eye & face protection, plus a groin protector is definitely recommended. We call it a ‘box’ in the UK – you call it a ‘cup’. But I am sure that the Copper appreciates the thought!

    • Tassiebush

      It’s a backup bludgeon

    • Edeco

      Immitating the cover image for the album “Sticky Fingers”

    • Grindstone50k

      cannot unsee

      • JK

        Guess I didn’t look in the first place. Now I just have to avoid seeing that photo ever again.

    • bernardg

      He is packing quite a heat, for sure. That’s really a size able gun he got down there.

  • gusto

    correct me if I am wrong but having a neutralize threats first is a very tough hand to be dealt when most policeofficers in the UK aren’t armed?

    • UKShuggy

      Ho-Ho. In the centre of most major cities in the UK, you would be hard pushed to walk a couple of blocks without tripping over an armed policeman. Not to mention the armed response officers on permanent vehicle patrol, plus the rumoured forward-deployed Special Forces on permanent standby. These days it certainly ‘ain’t all charming bobbies in funny hats with only a truncheon for company.

      • gusto

        but the regular bobbies must still outnumber the the armed ones?

        and what engagement orders do the bobbies have?

        • UKShuggy

          I expect that they are invited to shoot terrorists!

          But yes, most UK police are still unarmed. However the carrying of Tasers and CS spray is now increasingly routine in many forces. But despite all the increased awareness of terrorist acts, armed crime is still relatively rare in most parts of the UK.

          • Oregon213

            Tasers and CS spray a gun do not make. I’d hate to be on the beat if/when Paris happens in London. It would suck to be an unarmed officer, but sworn to protect. It sounds like if you take your job seriously you end up dead.

          • DataMatters

            IIRC, some unarmed Parisian officers were slaughtered during the Charlie Hebdo attack, were they not?

        • bernardg

          i’ve been to London a couple of times recently (loved it farmers market, a lot of delicious street food). But i’ve seen more bobbies wearing vest, even sidearm/smg. Than the old type of bobbies dressed in all black suit and a billy club.

      • Ben

        Not to mention that when UK police are carrying pistol only*, it’s not especially obvious to people unacquainted with firearms, so the perception around armed police presence is lower than the actual rate. If police aren’t wearing the full “Armed Police” regalia (plate carrier, baseball cap, drop leg holster down by their knees) they go unnoticed.

        *If you’re in London keep your eye out for police on motorcycles. In my experience it’s about 2:1 that they’ll have a Glock 17 in a safariland-type holster on their belt (carbine or MP5 in the luggage box). Bobbies on the beat won’t be carrying firearms in that way.

    • The Forty ‘Twa

      That guidance isn’t aimed at the unarmed officers, the title of the article this blog post links to makes that quite clear…

      “Armed police to ignore injured in new tactic to storm marauding terrorists”

      The guidance we’re given as unarmed officers in the UK is keep well back, do your best to help people and don’t get yourself killed.

  • gusto

    it is the “new” policy of the Swedish police to and they did in the recent sword-maniac attack, and the stopped him pretty quickly, he only killed two people.

  • MrSatyre

    England’s disarmed citizens will be a very attractive killing field for terrorists. Nice how only the British police are allowed to defend themselves. Must be nice to be among the privileged.

    • Scrumward bound

      Oh yeah, we’d all be terrified here in Britain, if we weren’t too busy being roughly forty times less likely to be killed by firearms than the average American.

      God it’s rough.

      • Anonymoose


        • whskee

          Don’t Shank Back! (sorry, showing my age, ‘yakety yak’…)

      • Devil_Doc

        Those numbers only work in a handful of large cities, not the other %99.9 of cities. Nice try. And I may be 40 times more likely to be shot, but at least I woke up a free man this morning. You call yourself a loyal subject to the crown. I don’t call myself subject to much of anything.

        • Scrumward bound

          Firearms, not politics, mate.

          Firearms that I’m much less likely to be shot by, as it happens.

          • Joey JoJo Jr.

            So, you’re reading a firearms blog, and complaining about firearms in your comments?
            Don’t have much on your to-do calendar these days, huh?

          • Scrumward bound

            Complaining? Not at all. I find firearms fascinating in design and fun to use.

            My objection is to the belief that widespread firearm ownership makes people safer. That’s all.

          • AJ187

            Prefer stabbings, do you?

          • Scrumward bound

            To ridiculously high levels of gun crime and accidental death?

            I’d be surprised if any sane person didn’t.

          • mosinman

            guys it’s ok, as long as they’re not killed by guns

          • Scrumward bound

            That’s not the choice though, is it. It’s between a small number of stabbings and a very, very high number of deaths from gun violence.

            But hey, maybe you get some kind of voyeuristic pleasure out of school shootings.

          • Ethan

            You’re missing the point rather spectacularly.

            Dead is dead. Killed by a knife or killed by a gun makes no difference to the victim. “Gun violence” is a made up term from people who are scared of the TOOL rather than the CRIME.

            If you want to debate meaningful numbers, total violent crime is the only one that matters.

            That said, the UK’s is lower, but not greatly. Total violent crime in both countries is steadily dropping.

          • Scrumward bound

            You’re right. Dead is dead. But far more people are made to be dead when guns are widely available.

            If you try and kill me now (some of you seem tempted ?) with a knife, it’s going to be hard. It’ll take time, even if only a few seconds. I might even be able to stop you.

            With a gun it’s much, much easier; and so it happens more often.

            That’s why the murder rate is higher in countries where gun controls are slacker.

          • Grindstone50k

            Apparently if I behead you in the middle of the street, it’s super easy.

          • Rock or Something

            Actually knives can just be as deadly and easy to kill with as a firearm. For example, an attack by knife-wielding men at a railway station in Kunming, south-west China, left at least 29 people dead and 109 wounded in 2014. And China is country where gun control is hardly “lax”.

            When it comes to overall domestic murder rates, internationally, U.S. is actually not high at all. Murder from firearms, the U.S. is of course one of the highest (though not number one), but counting murder by all means, no. As pointed out, UK is almost on par with the U.S, depending on how you crunch the numbers.

            It’s funny when people are fixated on gun violence but kinda give a pass on all other form of violence, and then try to justify it through some weird/warped reasoning. What’s worse is that you are are trying to make a very general claim with no basis in facts (more access to guns automatically means more people are dead, which discounts totally that any potential victim has the option to arm themselves as well). Not to mention, the highest mass murder from one attack in America did not involve firearms (If you discount 9/11, then it was a school bombing around 1900’s). And the most murders from one attack using firearms has not been in the U.S. either.

          • Evan

            The UK’s total violent crime numbers are actually about four times higher than those in the US. Rapes, assaults, and home invasion burglaries are all far more common. The murder rate is lower in the UK, but that is also exaggerated as the UK reports homicide numbers by convictions, whereas we report them by the coroner determining cause of death as homicide.

          • mosinman

            yeah the violent crime only is important when it’s done with firearms isn’t it?

          • Zachary marrs

            typical antis, divide crime into nonsensical sections, to easier demonize inanimate objects.

            how is being stabbed to death any different than shot to death?

            *hint, it isn’t.

          • Scrumward bound

            Fun little fact for you: there were 640 murders in the UK in 2011. 44 involved firearms.

            So far in 2015 there have been 12,232 deaths from gun violence in America. Even accounting for America’s population being roughly five times larger, that’s an interesting comparison.

            You cannot claim that guns make people safer. I’m not in favour of total gun control and believe there’s a happy middle ground between the UK and the USA, but to pretend that the American population is safer than Britain’s because of guns is simply hilarious.

          • All the Raindrops

            You think Britain is better. Good for you.

            It’s not.

          • Scrumward bound

            Sorry mate, I can’t hear you over my free healthcare.

            At no point did I say that I thought Britain was “better”.

          • Evan

            Yeah, we have free healthcare in America too (at least for veterans). It’s called the VA. When I broke my foot a few months ago I went to a real doctor and exchanged money for his services because I like being able to walk. You get what you pay for.

          • Zachary marrs

            Yet here you are.

            How many people were stabbed to death in Britain?

          • Grindstone50k

            Fun little fact: The US has 300 million people. The UK: 64.1.

            Overall VIOLENT crime rate in US: 500 per 100,000. UK: 700 per 100,000.

            You’re a fool and a troll who doesn’t even know how to properly use numbers. Even the Obama administration Department of Justice acknowledged that the SMALLEST number of Defensive Gun Uses per year number MORE than 50,000. This is the LOWEST estimate by a solid anti-gun administration.

            Further, if you actually break down where the vast majority crimes are being committed, you’d find that it’s NOT places like Wyoming, Texas, or other rural areas with strong gun cultures. California, by far, the most anti-gun state with the most restrictive gun laws leads the nation in violent gun crime. States with the LEAST restrictive gun laws do not. Even more, it’s not even the states, but high-population urban centers that lead in violent crime, including gun crime. And it’s not mentally distrubed lone wolf type attacks, it’s person-with-criminal-history against person-with-criminal-history using small caliber handguns, vast majority are illegally obtained via straw purchase or theft. Not “assault rifles” or “gun show loopholes”.

            You are seriously devoid of any fact or data and base your arguments solely on faulty platitudes that do not hold up to the proven reality.

          • RickOAA .

            That and most “gun crime” statistics by the antis include suicides, which usually account for about 2/3rd of the numbers. So, yes, if you’re sad or suicidal, guns are bad, mmmkay?

            Guns are way down on the list of dangerous things or activities, unless you live in one of our wonderfully corrupt, crime ridden, utopian liberal cities.

          • Evan

            What you mean is “there were 640 murder CONVICTIONS”. This leaves out all unsolved murders, and additional victims of the convicted (UK statistics count convictions for multiple murders as one).

            Also, “gun violence” spiked when you banned handguns.

          • The Forty ‘Twa

            That isn’t how it works at all, completely the opposite in fact. Another myth which gets banded about on here all the time. From the explanation of the Homicide Index, which is where the figures are published for E&W:

            “When the police initially record an offence as a homicide it remains classified as such unless the police or courts decide that a less offence, or no offence, took place.”

            Basically, what that says is it isn’t just convictions that count towards the figures. Police can’t just reclassify it because they haven’t solved it either, that can only happen when there is evidence to suggest that the relevant crime was not committed (a number of suicides may initially be recorded as homicides for example). The number of homicides initially recorded that end up being removed is usually very low, typically less than 20 per year and in single figures for some years.

            The homicide index figures include those for which a conviction has occurred AND those that are sub judice or unsolved. It also counts the individual victims rather than the number of killers. When the homicide figures are published each year, the majority of cases have not resulted in a conviction (usually around 60% have not for a given year). To suggest that only convictions are counted (or the number of killers) is completely and utterly untrue.

          • Grindstone50k

            And the UK’s much higher level of OVERALL violent crime?

          • The Forty ‘Twa

            This comes up time and again on here but the debate seems to lack all context for the statistics which is very important.

            The FBI only count a small number of offences as violent crime compared to what is defined as a violent crime in E&W. It only includes Murder, Forcible Rape, Robbery and Aggravated Assault according
            to the FBI.

            Other sex offences aren’t included and an aggravated assault is defined as “as an unlawful attack by one person upon another for the purpose of inflicting severe or aggravated bodily injury.”. The precludes a lot of minor assaults (which make up a good chunk of violent crime in the UK) from being counted.

            I could walk up to you in the street, punch you in the face and as long as you don’t have a serious injury it isn’t counted as a violent crime although you would be hard pressed to suggest it isn’t. Contrast that with England and Wales where any assault (no matter how
            minor the injury) is recorded as a violent crime along with all manner of other offences whether there was any violence involved or not (such as threats to kill, neglect of children and harassment).

            If you look at what is recorded as a violent crime in the UK, a lot of it simply wouldn’t count if we took the American approach to defining violent crime.

            The US has a very narrow definition of violent crime (almost too narrow I would argue) whilst England and Wales has a very broad definition of violent crime (too broad I would argue). You are not comparing like with like here and of course a country that excludes a whole host of offences that could reasonably be considered violent crime (like assault without injury or minor injuries)is going to have a lower level of violent crime.

          • Grindstone50k

            I am adjusting for regional definition differences, actually. 500 per 100k for US, 700 per 100k for UK after adjustment.

          • The Forty ‘Twa

            Can you flesh out how you arrived at those figures for us? It would be nice to see how you arrived at those figures. I’ll post my rough working below to see how it stacks up against yours. Apologies for the lack of links but Disqus doesn’t seem to like them for some reason.

            It is probably easier to adjust the UK figures to the US definitions then it is to do it the other way around. Unfortunately UK wide figures don’t actually exist as there are three legal systems in the UK, two of which are broadly comparable (NI and E&W) and one which is quite different to the other two (Scotland). For the purposes of this I’ll use E&W as the comparison as incorporating the rest of the UK is difficult to do. You can round up the rates slightly to make up for this if you wish.

            Scotland typically has a higher rate of violent crime although that is partly due to a difference in counting rules when multiple offences arise from the same set of circumstances. Comparing violent crime between E&W (and NI) and Scotland is difficult due to the fact that a number of offences that exist in the rest of the UK do not exist in Scotland and vice versa.

            The FBI puts the US rate of violent crime at 365 per 100 000 for 2014 so for the purposes of this I will take that as gospel.

            Comparing homicide is fairly easy. 534 according to the recorded crime statistics for 2014/15. Some manslaughter offences likely wouldn’t be counted in the US but is statistically insignificant so we won’t worry about that.

            Rape is also fairly simple to compare at 29 265 for 2014/15 (government summary of recorded crime in E&W for 2014/15). It is important to note that the offence is counted for the year it is recorded rather than the year that it is reported to have occurred. There has been a large spike in reports of historical rapes in E&W in the past two years which likely skews this figure.

            Robbery again is simple, 57 814 offences for 2013/14, again from the same bulletin as the rape statistics.

            Aggravated assault is where it gets interesting. The FBI has the following to say:

            “The FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program defines aggravated assault as an unlawful attack by one person upon another for the purpose of inflicting severe or aggravated bodily injury. The UCR Program further specifies that this type of assault is usually accompanied by the use of a weapon or by other means likely to produce death or great bodily harm.”

            The following numbers are all taken from the bulletin mentioned above. I believe they represent crimes that would likely be counted towards the aggravated assault figures if the occurred in the US.

            Assault with intent to cause serious injury – 20 573.

            Attempted murder – 570

            Endangering life – 996

            Racially or religiously aggravated assault with injury – 2731. I’m not sure all of these would be counted in the US. An assault of this type with minor injury doesn’t appear to fit the US definition but the numbers aren’t that great so I shouldn’t think it makes much of a difference.

            Assault with injury – 348 773. This tends to be less serious assaults with minor injuries (serious ones would be with intent to cause serious injury). There is no way a lot of these would be counted in the US as it includes any injury, no matter how minor.

            It is very difficult to know just how much would be counted and how much wouldn’t. If we assume that they all would then we end up with a rate at about 796 per 100 000. I would suggest that is the upper end and likely overestimates the rate of violent crime when compared with the US. It is interesting to note that it is a large jump on the rate from 2013/14 which was about 705 per 100 000.

            If we accept that a lot of these likely wouldn’t count towards violent crime statistics in the US then we have to ask by how would not be counted? Arbitrarily halving the assault with injury figure gives us a rate 490 per 100 000 and excluding it altogether gives us a rate of 184 per 100 000. Excluding it altogether is not likely to be accurate.

            Unfortunately there is no real way of further breaking up the assault with injury figures. We can look at previous years when the categories were different to work out the difference between ABH level injuries (which would probably count in a lot of instances in the US) and less serious wounding which would probably be less likely to count due to the lack of severe injury or possibility of death or great bodily harm coming from it. In these years, ABH level injuries typically ran at about 2% of the less serious wounding figure (I’ve rounded up here).

            There isn’t much to suggest this percentage of more serious injuries would have changed since 2008 (last year for which that data was provided). I would infer from this that the most serious end of the assault with injury offences is likely to be a fairly small part of the overall figure and the bulk of these would not be counted under the US definition of violent crime. I wouldn’t however like to put a figure on it although if we use 10% as an example it gives a violent crime rate of 245 per 100 000.

            I would suggest this is much closer to the figure that would be reached if we took the US definition of violent crime and applied it to E&W but it is impossible to make a confident assessment of this. What you have taken what is likely to be the upper end of the range and stated it as fact without explaining it at all. I think it is clear the rate per 100 000 people is likely to be much lower than what you estimate it at.

          • DataMatters

            It at least gives our political class a pause to consider their actions and what the consequences might be. Although the recent administration has pushed things a bit far for my taste.

          • Ethan

            “My objection is to the belief that widespread firearm ownership makes people safer. That’s all”

            Thankfully, our Constitution prohibits government from infringing on basic human rights like effective self defense – firearms do not have to pass the “Social utility” test like cars, alcohol, etc.. all of which contribute to far more deaths than firearms.

            BTW, gun sales during black friday here in the US just broke a new record (185,000 guns sold in one day), while Violent crime here is at a 40 year low and continuing to drop. Check the FBI stats if you don’t believe me.

          • All the Raindrops

            Most of the shootings are in the hood. Stay out the hood, and you won’t get shot. Unless terrorists.

      • DataMatters

        Unless you are engaged in the business of peddling illicit drugs, you don’t have a whole lot to worry about in the states, statistically speaking.

      • Badwolf

        Don’t know where you got your stats. But to be fair it shouldn’t be padded by suicides and bad guys shooting other bad guys.

        I find it so funny when antis lobby for gun restrictions, then when a bad guy with a gun shows up what do they pray for? Yes that’s right… A good guy with a gun.

        I would argue further that the target himself should be that good guy with a gun because the police are always late.

      • Grindstone50k

        And yet still far more likely to be victimized by violent crime regardless. At least you’re only getting stabbed, not shot. That’s better, right?

      • iksnilol

        Getting shot is better than getting stabbed.

        95% of gunshot people survive if they get to the hospital. Only 70% of stabbed people survive if they get to a hospital.

  • Lee Attiny

    A buddy of mine got me a “gig” playing a terrorist for Navy special forces training. Worst day of my life. I got “neutralized” about a thousand times with chalk bullets and all I had was an AK with blanks. Being a terrorist sucks.

    • MRHapla

      But you got a great story out of it. On the plus side,,,,

    • Mark

      A civilian playing OpFor? Sounds like a blast, I’d like details, please.

    • iksnilol

      Eh, you only had blanks while they had chalk bullets? No wonder they won all the time. 😛

  • Broz

    Makes Complete sense…first duty is to stop the bleeding…in this case the active threat!!! BTW Notorious IUD…he’s obviously happy to see someone…evidently outr of the frame of this picture!!!

  • Grindstone50k

    With the eye- and mouth-pro, looks like they’re using airsoft simulation rifles.

  • Graham2

    Sorry to be picky but they’ve both got MP5s.

  • Phil Ward

    Speaking as a Brit, I am very surprised that this wasn’t already part of the SOP and reading the article, it seems that the “controversy” has been sparked by the PR person involved…

    • Randomer

      It has been since Mumbai nationally and longer than that in some forces (mid to late 90’s in line with American thinking where some forces realised they didn’t have enough firearms officers on duty to try and contain so the only option was to advance and neutralise).

      Its just that the Met in particular seem to be launching a bigger PR exercise announcing the fact more openly. Part of me things it might be part of a deterrence strategy.

      Some of the county forces have openly held exercises practicing this sort of thing for several years without much press interest apart from local papers, just that most big media is London centric so it is getting more attention now.

  • Badwolf

    I agree with you somewhat. I would of course prefer a good professionally trained guy with a gun, but if you mean police I wouldn’t hold my breath. Imo any kind of defense, even from magpul trained hillbilly, is better than none. Also a hillbilly can (and should) get good professional training.

  • Badwolf

    I agree with you somewhat. But if you mean police I wouldn’t hold my breath. Imo any defense is better than none. Also police don’t have monopoly on good training. A hillbilly can get good professional training.