For the serving soldier: the 2014 military Christmas gift guide.

Author:Connor, John

If you listen to the mainstream media, the mantra you hear is, "All of our troops are coming home, and isn't that nice?" But we know freedom isn't free, and can't be paid for on an installment plan. It must be maintained and protected every minute of every day. Yes, we still have nearly 40,000 troops deployed in Afghanistan, and beyond that, hundreds of thousands more serving around the world, from the Gulf to Greenland, from Poland to beneath the Polar icecap. Sons and daughters, family and friends--some of them, friends we haven't met yet.

If you're unsure what goodies to pad your packages with, to fill out those corners, go to and click on y "Digital Editions," then check old November issues for past Gift Guides. And now, some other suggestions for you!


Every soldier, sailor, airman and Marine can use a pocket toolbox, and Leatherman's OHT--One-Handed Tool--is one of the best. Offering 1-handed operation and 16 locking tools, it is all-stainless steel construction, with raised icons on the handles for quick ID of tool locations. The price is $100, but shop around.


I wasn't going to include this, but I just bought four more to send to friends in uniform because it's such a winner: Streamlight's little 1-AAA C4 MicroStream clips in a pocket, on MOLLE gear, or on the bill of a cap to turn it into a hands-free headlight. Just 3.5 inches long and weighing 1 ounce, it's the ultimate on-you-all-the-time light source--and a great gift!


FEROX folders from Maxpedition are about the best bang for the buck you can get in duty-tough locking-blade knives. Available in khaki, green or black with serrated or plain edge blades, they're slim, light, agile and sharp--and how's a price of only $29.99 grab ya? One for you, one for ...


Proven in every climate, this Field Grade Gear Care Kit from Sentry Solutions is a useful and welcome gift. The compact pouch contains oil-free Tuf-Glide lubricant and protectant in a pinpoint applicator, lint-free cleaning tools, a GATCO Super Micro ceramic blade sharpener, and an oil-free Tuf-Cloth to wipe away dirt and tarnishing, stop rust and displace moisture. List price is just $26.99.


Sorry. This photo won't tell you zip. You'll have to see how TacLace works on their website. Briefly--thread the supplied X-long laces through TacLace, and then whether sprinting to the wire, to a fire on the flight line...

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