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Hit Me With Your Best Shock!

Everyone knows Marines run to the sound of the guns. But to the silent jolt of a Taser?

Yes. Absolutely. Oorah! was replaced with “Taze, me, Bro!” at Marine Corps Base Quantico recently, as Marines lined up to be zapped.

Of course, during the Tasing there wasn’t much of anything coherent said, just screams or loud grunts.

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“I am an individual who loves adrenalin rushes and I wanted to see what kind of adrenalin rush I would get from being Tased,” Staff Sgt. Michael J. Boafo told Defensetech. “It was a pain that I have never felt before. I felt completely incapacitated and helpless.”

Boafo, operations chief with the Security Battalion at Quantico, said the pain stopped as soon as the Taser was shut off, though his leg “felt weird for about 15 minutes after the fact. Almost like when a leg falls asleep.”

Obliging the zap-curious Leathernecks was retired Marine Col. George Fenton, now vice president for federal and military programs for Taser International.

At the time he retired Fenton was director of the DoD’s Joint Non-Lethal Weapons Program, where he coordinated research and development of weapons designed to incapacitate rather than kill.

“I always said, without shooting to kill, the ‘Holy Grail’ [of weapons] is neuro-muscular incapacitation,” he told Defensetech.org at Quantico, where Taser was doing a very popular show-and-tell as part of the Modern Day Marine Expo. If the conflict situation falls short of the need to kill, he said, taking someone down with a Taser is the best way to handle it. This would include policing actions such as perimeter or gate security.

“It’s about end-state and consequences as opposed to thinking lethal/non-lethal,” he said. “You need to think about what I’ve got [for defense] and what’s the situation?”

That said, once a situation turns “hot” the Taser would not be the way to go. “You don’t’ take a Taser to a gun-fight; it won’t do you any good,” he said.

-- Bryant Jordan

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