How to Survive the Urban Apocalypse – Interview with Ex-CIA

Last year in Denver’s storybook, upwards of 5,000 violent crimes were committed, including assault, robbery, and murder. In our own neighborhoods we have witnessed drive-by shootings, car jackings, car theft, and at least one death from a teenager throwing a small boulder through the windshield of a moving vehicle. We are on the way to matching another record high in violence, and the upcoming Summer months are always the peak to these activities.

But Denver is not alone. Many other cities are facing record breaking violence numbers, but what can you do about it? Well, COVID-19 has left many of us spending a bit more time at home behind closed doors. But it’s always better to take control of your fear, rather than live your life around it. So, we ask former CIA officer, and New York bestselling author of “Spy Secrets That Can Save Your Life“, Jason Hanson, how he has survived the urban jungles, and what it takes to be an active and aware citizen with the clear and intent purpose… to survive today’s urban apocalypse.

Urbasm: Hi Jason, what are the greatest threats right now for those who are forced to live in the crowded urban landscapes of America?

Ex-CIA Officer, Jason Hanson: So, the two greatest threats right now for people that live in crowded urban landscapes are first, just random attacks. So, you know, homeless people, mentally ill, or angry people; or just random attack criminals because maybe you live in a place where prosecutors are not prosecuting and they’re easy on crime and defunding the police. So criminals know it’s a free-for-all heyday. So that is the one big threat. The other one is of course blackouts. The grid going down; lights out scenario because when you have the lights go out, grids go down, you have chaos and looting and many people don’t do good things.

Urbasm: In these cases, what are the best tools or spycraft to put urban survival into our favor?

Jason Hanson: So the best tools to consider is I always have a gun on me, I always have a knife on me, and I always have a tactical pen. I realize not everybody lives in gun-free states, but in most everywhere you can at least have a knife and a tactical pen on you, which is what I recommend.

Urbasm: Talk to us a bit about the design of your Black Stiletto Knife. We have never seen a knife with this sort of needle-shaped tip. Where did the idea for this design come from?

Jason Hanson: So, the design for the black stiletto knife was penetration because if heaven forbid you’re ever attacked somebody’s gonna kill you, you want to be able to stop them quickly and what better way to stop somebody than to have a needle-shaped tip where you can penetrate quickly through clothing, it can penetrate body armor, and we know criminals are wearing body armor these days so you can penetrate places where if you hit a major artery that’s gonna turn the lights out rather quickly. So it was mostly about what is the fastest quickest way to stop somebody from attacking me to make sure they go down and they can’t continue to try and kill me.

Urbasm: We would imagine that these ‘tools’ are not found in most people’s daily carry.

Jason Hanson: I think what people forget in their daily carry is just multiple weapons. So, redundancy. The knife, the gun, the tactical pen, the flashlight. I mean I realize we have flashlights on our phones, but still have a flashlight. Plus if you have a good quality metal light, like I have one called the Flashbang and you can whack somebody over the head with it and use it for self-defense purposes if you needed to.

Image by mrsiraphol

Urbasm: When you walk into a room, where are the first places your eyes go in order to search for any signs of potential danger?

Jason Hanson: When I walk into a room, I’m just scanning everybody. I’m looking at the humans. I’m looking at what people are doing. I’m scanning all around the room from one end to the other. I’m checking all the Xs just to see what’s going on. All this can be done very, very quickly and also I look up. Most human beings, we forget to look up and see what’s going on up there. Of course, there’s that movie cliché of the guy hiding in the rafters, which is in all the movies, but still, look up to see if there’s anything above you.

Urbasm: Besides the physical danger, a lot of us face another hurdle in daily life in the city. Surviving and prospering in an office setting with co-workers. What is the technique that you would recommend for analyzing people that can be used in the workplace, as in assessing the competition that lies within?

Jason Hanson: For analyzing people that can be used in the workplace I mean just get to know people. Most of us are so selfish these days that we don’t actually take the time to pay attention to others, to ask them questions, to truly get to know them, to observe what they’re doing. So if you truly pay attention to people and take an interest in them and ask them questions, they will share a tremendous amount with you and you can learn everything you want to learn. So it’s kind of common sense 101 is really trying to get to know them and not just on a superficial level.

Urbasm: And that covers the essentials of standing our ground on our home turf, but what about when it’s time to get out of the city? What should we have in our urban ‘Go Bag’?

Jason Hanson: Absolute essentials to putting together an urban go bag. Well, I mean this could be a list in itself. You want to have everything you need to survive in case you’re stuck in a place for hours, maybe even days, or you have to walk somewhere. So that’s going to be the food, the water, the water filter, some kind of shelter, whether it’s a poncho that you can use as shelter but also wear. And then you of course want to have your weapons. A good quality survival fixed blade knife. You want to have sunglasses in there. You want to have a gun in there if you don’t have children around, but if you have children around, it’s got to be a gun and a rapid access safe.

Urbasm: For our readers who might just prefer to get out of these areas, what is your advice on finding the safest place to call home, whether it is seeking out a new city or town to live in, or finding the safest neighborhood within a big city?

Jason Hanson: The safest place to call home is a conservative state that is gun friendly where people are self-reliant and respect each other and know everybody has a gun. So I’m talking about places like Wyoming, Nevada, Utah, Texas, and Florida. In places where there are small cities, you don’t want to be in a big city because even in good conservative places, like I still wouldn’t want to be in a huge major city in Florida or Texas, I still want to be in a small city. And luckily we have the internet these days so you can do all the research and find out, ‘Hey, is this a good conservative small town that has the same values that I do?’

Urbasm: And speaking of life-threatening situations, what is your simplest tip for the untrained man on how to end the pursuit of a potential attacker or end the possibility of a fight before it even begins?

Jason Hanson: Well, the best tip for ending a fight before it begins is situational awareness, having your head up. One time I was almost kidnapped, two men tried to kidnap me, but I saw them coming, I was able to run away and they never got me. So, if you have your head up, you’ll see danger ahead of time and that’ll give you a chance to get out of the dangerous area.

As far as learning self-defense, the one tip for an untrained person is you’ve got to be aggressive and you’ve got to end the fight quickly. So, that means a punch in the throat or an elbow to the face or an eye gouge and then a punch in the throat. So, end the fight quickly and be aggressive.

Thank you for the advice, Jason. Check out more tips, books, and gear on Jason’s website,

More Survival Tips from Jason

How to Use Your Naked Body as a Weapon

How to Disarm a Gunman

How to Prepare for a Home Invasion

The First Two Places Every Burglar Goes

Best Place to Hide Your Valuables at Home

How to Disappear Without a Trace (When Everything Above Fails)

About Dr. Eric J. Leech

Eric has written for over a decade. Then one day he created, a site for every guy.

About Dr. Eric J. Leech

Eric has written for over a decade. Then one day he created, a site for every guy.