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Marine brass endorses infantry plan to ditch M16 for M4

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posted on Jul, 29 2015 @ 08:01 AM

Marine leaders have made the momentous recommendation to ditch the iconic M16 in favor of the M4 carbine as the new universal weapon for infantrymen.

The recommendation to swap the venerated rifle that has served as the grunt's primary implement of war since Vietnam now sits on the commandant's desk, pending his final review and a decision. But, the swap appears imminent and if approved will relegate the M16 to a support role. It follows a similar shift already underway in the Army.

With the endorsement of several major commands already supporting the switch — including Marine Corps Combat Development Command; Combat Development and Integration; Plans, Policies and Operations; Marine Corps Systems Command; and Installations and Logistics — final word is possible in weeks or months.

The proposed switch also gets the thumbs up from senior marksmen such as the 1st Marine Division gunner, Chief Warrant Officer 5 Vince Kyzer. "The carbine is a great weapon system for its time," he said. "...It will increase the war fighter's lethality and mobility."

There are a few minor drawbacks to adopting the M4, but infantrymen seem to agree those are insignificant compared to the advantages.

Both Innis and West said trading in the M16's 20-inch barrel for the M4's 14.5-inch barrel does sacrifice some muzzle velocity, which translates into a slightly shorter effective range — although Colt markets both with an effective range of about 650 yards. But that isn't a significant concern given the closer ranges at which Marines and soldiers commonly engage enemy in modern warfare.
Members of the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit's maritime

To strike the enemy beyond the range of the M4 or even the M16, each Marine fire team already has an M27 Infantry Automatic Rifle, which in semi-auto with its free-floating barrel and precision trigger also now doubles as the designated marksman's rifle. It's a role that will no longer be filled by the Squad Advanced Marksman Rifle, a match-grade M16 with a scope.

When the M27 can't get the job done, combined arms doctrine means indirect fire and air assets are just a radio call away, West said.

Marine Corps Times

I'm not sure I agree with this. The 5.56 x 45 was designed to be optimized with a 20 inch barrel and the Marines have ever prided themselves on their long range marksmanship. I like the feel and accuracy of the M16A4 and that extra several hundred feet per second muzzle velocity certainly helps terminal ballistics and effect.

Sure, the carbine is better for the largely urban fighting in Iraq, but not so much in the wide open spaces of Afghanistan. I think they should keep the A4.

posted on Jul, 29 2015 @ 08:40 AM

This is My Rifle
Mark Maysey
Back in 69, I didn't have a care
Before they called my number, I chopped of all my hair
Said goodbye to mamma, dad and uncle Dan
Boarded an airplane and headed off for Nam
He called us to attention as we stepped off the plane
Checked us off a list as he called out our names
Then he picked up his rifle and raised it in the air
Grabbed his crotch with his other hand as we all stood and stared
He said...
This is my rifle
This is my gun
One is for killing
The others for fun
So until this war is over
Or until your time is done
This is your rifle and this one is your gun
Thirty years have passed since I stepped off that plane
The nightmares haven't ended and neither has the pain
I've drank my share of liquor and smoked my share of grass
But I can't unload the memories or these few words from my past
Repeat Chorus
Well, a dear friend of mine finally called it quits
They found him one cold morning laying in a ditch
A bullet through his brain, his rifle at his side
And one old rusted dog tag from 1969
When they turned his body over they found his written note
It wasn't but a few lines, but the last he ever wrote
And when they laid him in his grave on that cold December day
I took those words he'd written and I began to play
Repeat Chorus
Back in 69, I didn't have a care
Before they called my number, I chopped off all my hair

This Is My Rifle

posted on Jul, 29 2015 @ 09:20 AM
Here's the one I had to memorize when a wee lad at Parris Island a million years ago:

This is my rifle. There are many like it, but this one is mine. It is my life. I must master it as I must master my life. Without me my rifle is useless. Without my rifle, I am useless. I must fire my rifle true. I must shoot straighter than the enemy who is trying to kill me. I must shoot him before he shoots me. I will. My rifle and I know that what counts in war is not the rounds we fire, the noise of our burst, or the smoke we make. We know that it is the hits that count. We will hit.

My rifle is human, even as I am human, because it is my life. Thus, I will learn it as a brother. I will learn its weaknesses, its strengths, its parts, its accessories, its sights and its barrel. I will keep my rifle clean and ready, even as I am clean and ready. We will become part of each other.

Before God I swear this creed. My rifle and I are the defenders of my country. We are the masters of our enemy. We are the saviors of my life.

So be it, until victory is America's and there is no enemy.

posted on Jul, 29 2015 @ 09:32 AM
a reply to: IanFleming

Ya I think you answered it....with the more urban fighting going on it is indeed probably better to use an M4...but for sure they will get the supplies they need even that is the new "standard". Clearing a building with an M16 can be really awkward.

posted on Jul, 29 2015 @ 09:39 AM
Yep, don't use a M15, it will work.

posted on Jul, 29 2015 @ 10:17 AM
I'm no weapons expert.

However it does seem to me a better option to use a shorter barrel. Modern conflict seems to revolve around urban or close inner city fighting all around the world at the moment. This type of conflict in my opinion will increase over the years.

A shorter barrel to me means it will be easier to carry and also easier to aim within buildings and cluttered environments.

posted on Jul, 29 2015 @ 10:31 AM
Yep, 7.62

posted on Jul, 29 2015 @ 10:38 AM
AS far back as the 1930's in was realised that infantry actions take place at less than 400 yards, seems to be taking a long time to sink in?

posted on Jul, 29 2015 @ 10:46 AM
In Viet 7.62 cut rubber trees in half, less than a 100yrds, more if need be.
edit on 29-7-2015 by KZrkiller because: (no reason given)

edit on 29-7-2015 by KZrkiller because: (no reason given)

posted on Jul, 29 2015 @ 01:06 PM
A shorter barrel is also a stiffer barrel which can contribute to better accuracy, even if you lose some velocity.

posted on Jul, 29 2015 @ 01:15 PM

originally posted by: Flipper35
A shorter barrel is also a stiffer barrel which can contribute to better accuracy, even if you lose some velocity.

The heavy barrel on the A2 and subsequent variants definitely helped accuracy a lot.

posted on Jul, 29 2015 @ 01:27 PM
a reply to: IanFleming

The M4 has similar feature as the FN SCAR but I never had the opportunity to try any of theses.

It's interesting that, back in 2013, the army killed the competition to replace the M4.

posted on Jul, 29 2015 @ 06:29 PM
a reply to: theultimatebelgianjoke

As i remember, the HK416 was one of the prototypes evaluated during those trials....It was ABSOLUTELY more reliable than the M4. It had the familiar form factor of the M4, with the reliability of an AK47.

“no competitor demonstrated a significant improvement in weapon reliability” my ass....

posted on Aug, 19 2015 @ 01:41 PM
Funny how short memories are. It wasn't 5 minutes ago that everyone was bitching about the short range of the M4 being a hinderance in the 'stan. Terry was engaging with AKs at ranges the M4 couldn't reach. Suddenly we're happy to take a reduction in range.

So many people complained about the M4s inability to stop targets due to the reduced velocity. You rarely found the same complaints from M16 armed units as the 5.56 is optimised for a barrel of >16".

Maybe the M855A1 is the reason behind this...

posted on Aug, 21 2015 @ 07:17 AM
big mistake, the ballistics are completely different. This will be the last blow to the .223 as a military round. We need a bigger bullet not a slower, smaller one. If you need a SMG, take a SMG as a side arm, replace the damn m9 with something useful already!

posted on Aug, 23 2015 @ 04:22 PM

originally posted by: Acidx
big mistake, the ballistics are completely different. This will be the last blow to the .223 as a military round. We need a bigger bullet not a slower, smaller one. If you need a SMG, take a SMG as a side arm, replace the damn m9 with something useful already!

SMGs are a poor compromise in combat. They are a weapon of convenience. I would always choose a rifle calibre weapon over a pistol calibre one if I really thought I may have to actually shoot someone. The pistol is a weapon of last resort for when the rifle has a stoppage or the user needs a free hand.

As for the M9, it is a decent pistol. Loads of bad press because some people can't get over the .45 vs 9mm thing so they slag off the weapon. In reality it is reliable and accurate. It does what a combat pistol needs to. It puts lots if bullets onto a target quickly at close range. Anything else is just window dressing. I've been issued 4 different pistols over the years for real life use in operational theatres (Walther P5C, Browning HP, Sig P226 and recently the Glock 17). I haven't felt naked with any of them. I trained on the M9 during a US army attachment. It shot well and struck me as a decent if somewhat bulky pistol.

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