Experts in the United States agree that it is best to carry a round in the chamber if you carry a pistol for self-defense. Nonetheless, there are plenty of people who opt not to do so for a variety of reasons, and in the case of Israeli military technique, because of historically sound policy.
There are plenty of articles which expound the dangers and demerits of carrying in “Condition Three” as it has come to be known since Col. Jeff Cooper helped develop and promulgate the Modern Pistol Technique. What is not debatable is that both techniques have their strengths and weaknesses, and there is not one “correct” technique for all situations.
In an excellent article, Dr. David Armstrong explains the historical context for empty chamber carry. In reality, empty chamber carry should be considered the universally applicable method of carrying a gun, whereas “Cocked and Locked” is a relatively recent American development.
In this video, I present an example of when empty chamber carry would be appropriate, and offer commentary in response to this author’s opinion. Please enjoy!
Brian Wang is a full time firearms and self-defense instructor who resides in the San Francisco bay area. He is trained under the Massad Ayoob Group to guide civilian students through the complex legal, moral, and social ramifications of the use of Deadly Force in self-defense. Learn more about specialty classes here.