A subset of non-lethal combatives is military and paramilitary training in hand-to- hand fighting. For police, the emphasis is usually showing officers how to safely restrain opponents while for militaries the emphasis is usually on increasing soldiers' self- confidence and physical aggressiveness. Properly supervised, such programs are safe, but broken bones are not unknown and some trainees have died due to undiagnosed preexisting conditions or instructor abuse. Therefore readers are strongly encouraged to consult health care professionals before attempting this training and to only practice under competent professional supervision.
Disclaimers aside, there is an astonishing range of technology available. At the simplest level, batons and pepper sprays are commonly found non-lethal weapons. At an intermediate level, there are net launchers and sticky foams. And at an advanced level there are vehicle-mounted blinding lasers and microwave weapons. Yet in the end the best weapon is no better than its worst user. So while technology will be discussed the editor's intent is to focus on issues of team-building, training, field employment, communications and negotiations, and acting within the law.
It is acknowledged that there are significant differences between
how individuals, police forces, and military units properly employ non-lethal
methods. For example, in any given situation an individual might be best
advised to withdraw, a police force to negotiate, and a military to blow
a hole in the roof with a shaped charge. Therefore prospective writers
should be specific about their intended audience, and list probable outcomes
of any misuse of described courses of action.
JNC Nov 1999.