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Old 09-19-2011, 10:16 AM   #1
kilogulf59's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: West Central Wisconsin
Posts: 129
Lapel and Thumb Daggers

Lapel and Thumb Daggers

The SOE/OSS lapel daggers have always fascinated me though I could never see the point to them. They, being so small, seemed all but useless to me nonetheless, they must be a valid weapon or the practical minded SOE/OSS wouldn’t have adopted them.

Recently, in a correspondence on the subject with the eminent Dennis Martin, he was kind enough to explain to me their methodology and to include some tutorial pictures as well.

Thank you den for the following, you are truly a knowledgeable and gracious gentleman.

From Dennis Martin…
[blockquote]The covert/compact weapons used by SOE/OSS were last-ditch items, primarily intended to provide an opportunity for escape.

Being tiny, they lacked the bulk necessary for a full grip, so a couple of kit-specific methods were devised and taught.

For thrusting, with the Lapel Dagger or the Brochette [killing needles] a Pinch grip is used. If time permits, the cord is looped around the finger, providing stability for the thrust.

For slashing, with the Thumb dagger, the same Pinch grip is used. Being double edged the Scalpel Grip isn’t advised, however with tiny single edged blades the Scalpel grip is best.

This is the Scalpel Grip, here used with an SOE Coin-knife; which is designed to reinforce the strike with any small blade.

Finally, a grip shown to me by Mass Ayoob, originating in the old Soviet states. This is used with assassination weapons, such as the killing needle, as initially looks harmless, but this Namken grip is designed to allow you to drive the blade into the ear canal, eye sockets, or the throat.

In the pictures, some grips are shown with the hand partially open, for clarity, and then closed in the full grip.[/blockquote]

I also found this ditty thanks to Clint and his Gutter-Fighting website

By Carl Cestari - 06/28/02
Professor Kelly Yeaton demonstrated the following method for us:

Lapel dagger - sewn under the LEFT jacket lapel. Innocent "stance" while fingering left lapel with left hand. Pull lapel dagger and THROW it into the face of the antagonist.

IMMEDIATELY pull either the "Shanghai" knife from shoulder holster with right hand, OR the "Hula" cross-draw for handgun.

IT WORKS like a charm!

2nd tid-bit:

Matt Temkin introduced me to a friend of his named Patrick Fair. Mr. Fair had trained under a "fencing" maestro who was very active in clandestine blade work during WWII.

Patrick told me the following-

There was a "made" member of an organized crime syndicate who used the following method of "quick kill".

Carrying a small sharpened "nail file" he would approach the mark face on and using his left hand slice the right hand of the mark while his hands were hanging normally at his side. The mark would invariably react to this cut by looking downward at the injury. The hitter then used this natural reaction to come up FULL FORCE with a "heel of hand" blow under the chin. Result was usually a broken neck. At the least the mark was slammed to the ground, and then the boots administered the "coup d'grace".

Many other interesting tales concerning project "Blue Card", Covert Intelligence and the "Wise Guys".

OSS Lapel Dagger method...

BTW, all these are available as PDF on ICCF's 4Share account.
Take Care and Stay Safe,

"Si Vis Pacem, Para Bellum"

"REMEMBER – What works for you may not, necessarily, work for me. Keep an open mind!"

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Gun Owners of America – Life Member
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