100 Deadly Skills

Title:                      100 Deadly Skills

Author:                 Clint Emerson

Emerson, Clint (2015). 100 Deadly Skills: The SEAL Operative’s Guide to Eluding Pursuers, Evading Capture, And Surviving Any Dangerous Situation. New York: Touchstone

LCCN:    2015012021

U225 .E64 2015


Date Posted:      March 7, 2017

Complied and Reviewed by Hayden B. Peake[1]

During his 20-year Navy career, author Clint Emerson participated in special operations around the world while assigned to the National Security Agency, Seal Team 3, and Seal Team 6. Known as Violent Nomads, he and his colleagues were skilled in surviving dangerous situations. After his retirement he realized that while much of his training would not be of use again, there were some techniques that applied to today’s risk-filled society. 100 Deadly Skills is intended to make these techniques explicit for those whose day-to-day work exposes them to uncommon hazards, or perhaps for authors of spy thrillers.

The first thing to understand when considering this book is that, despite the title, not all the “skills” discussed are deadly, unless of course there is something about how to “construct a rectal concealment” device, or “leaving zero digital trace behind,” that is not obvious. And for ease of understanding, illustrations accompany each skill while the details of use are explained in the narrative, usually limited to just a page.

On the other hand, there are entries that deal with expedient means of self-defense, making and handling weapons, shooting from a vehicle, and making an improvised Taser. Less violent topics include surveillance techniques, tracking devices, making an improvised infrared light, lock-picking, anonymous email, hasty disguises, defensive driving, and construction of a safe room.

100 Deadly Skills is a handy source of tools and techniques for those with occupations just outside the norm.

[1] Hayden Peake in The Intelligencer  (22, 2, Fall 2016,  p.  117).  Hayden Peake is the Curator of the CIA’s Historical Intelligence Collection. He has served in the Directorate of Science and Technology and the Directorate of Operations. Most of these reviews appeared in recent unclassified editions of CIA’s Studies in Intelligence. Other reviews and articles may be found online at  www.cia.gov.

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