Long Term WROL: It’s Worse Than You Think

8 Jul

Many gun focused preppers like to talk about what weapons they want to have for a WROL situation. What is the definition of WROL? It stands for Without Rule Of Law. This corresponds to a situation where police and the military aren’t adequately enforcing the law, and honest law-abiding people are left to the mercy of criminals.

Short term WROL can and does happen. Police can be overwhelmed. The National Guard hasn’t been mobilized. Citizens are disorganized. The result is that crime runs amuck. A prepper armed with a 12 gauge shotgun or an AR-15 could protect his family against the small bands of criminals. A family of preppers could protect their retreat.

What about long term WROL? What would that look like and how well prepared would we, as preppers, realistically be to deal with it? A interesting article about Somali warlords provides some insight: “What I Learned from a Somali Warlord” from Wired Magazine.

In 1991, when civil war destroyed the ability of the army and police to enforce the law, Somali fell into a state of WROL. The article tells the story of Ali Dere, the warlord controlling the city of Mogadishu. To fight looting, he raised his own personal army. How did he pay his army? He made businesses in the city pay a tax. With funds, he was able to purchase automatic rifles on the black market.

Ali Dere is only one of fifteen major warlords who control an estimated 30,000 armed followers in Somalia. That means a run-of-the-mill warlord controls about 2,000 men. Too often, when we picture WROL, we have an image of a truck with a few armed men in it. That doesn’t show the true force that even petty warlords have.

Somalia has a population of about 9 million people with a population density of about 40 people per square mile. America has a population of about 300 million with a population density of about 74 people per square mile.

If there ever were a break down of law and order for an extended time in America, citizen militias would develop. Given America’s large cities, there might be hundreds of warlords each commanding 5,000 or 10,000 men.

Unless the event that precipitated WROL here hobbled the whole world, these warlords would have access to weapons provided by international gunrunners. As long as there was lootable wealth, taxable wealth, or natural resources, warlords would be able to arm their men with AK-47s, heavy machineguns, and RPGs.

Armed, smaller groups that would not assimilate to the powerful warlords would be driven into the countryside. These groups might number well into the thousands. Influential survivalist Jim Cobb came up with the expression “Lone Wolf Syndrome” to describe the hardy younger guys who plan to take to the woods and live out of their backpacks. He’s right, most of us couldn’t survive this way. But if long term WROL hit America, even three or four united prepper families with several armed men wouldn’t be much of a match for a petty warlord, if they tried to defend a fixed retreat.

The Sharp, Sudden Decline of America’s Middle Class
Rolling Stone has a story about how the economy has forced some people to live in their cars.

This is a link from the book The Prepper Next Door (& a follow up to generators): Northern Tool Generator Buyer’s Guide

Here’s a great prepping site I came upon: Simple Prepping Now
(simplepreppingnow.com). It discusses many homesteader skills; like chickens and eggs. More for rural preppers than urban preppers.

Land of 100,000 gun carriers  (Minnesota Specific: 1 in 40 Minnesotans now has a concealed gun permit.)

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