Cut a Baddie

I’ve always wanted to know self-defense. The problem? I’d have to take the time to learn it. Sigh. When it comes down to it I’ll probably spend any free time reading, baking, or eating said baked things. I don’t really care for exerting one’s self, but if I could snap my fingers and BAM! human weapon extraordinaire! Then, yes, sign me up. Until that miraculous day happens I’ll have to resign myself to those fabulous individuals who can do what most people can’t.

For example, the Special Operations Executive was a killing machine’s training ground. Spies to be more accurate. At this special DieppeDaggerschool the trainees were taught parachuting, physical training, unarmed combat, demolitions, map reading, and weapons training to name a few. Classes were taught by experts including William Fairbairn and Eric Anthony Sykes, two ex-Shanghai municipal police officers, who taught the art of unarmed combat or silent killing. These guys were so into their jobs that they took it upon themselves to design a brand new style of fighting knife. Thus, the FS Fighting Knife was born. It’s a double-edged fighting knife resembling a dagger with a foil grip, with a tapered tip perfect for thrusting. Often described as a stiletto, it can inflict slash cuts on the opponent when its edges are sharpened to specifications.

In 1941, Fairbairn and Sykes traveled to the Wilkinson Sword Company and discussed their requested design. Afterwords, the knife was issued to the British Commandos especially for the for the 1944 Normandy landings. Its popularity spread to other special forces around the world where it is still in use for its handiness in hand to hand combat.


  1. Lisa Betz

    I always dreamed of learning swordplay. But like you, I never wanted to spend the time and money to actually learn it. And then there is my rotator cuff problem…

    So I make do watching swashbuckling movies and reading about men and women who do know how to use them.

    1. J'nell (Post author)

      I almost took fencing and/or archery in college, but the classes didn’t fit my schedule so I ended up taking badmitten. Meh. Love swashbuckling movies! They say that the sword fight between Errol Flynn and Basil Rathbone in The Adventures of Robin Hood was the best ever on film.


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