Here on TFL we must have the finest military minds on the planet, who have figured out what all the other military geniuses of the late 19th and early 20th Century could not see, i.e. that the Lee-Enfield was the rifle to own, not the Mauser.
Coming from a scientific background, I have seen plenty of research ruined by bias (I know what's best, if I yell loud enough I don't have to prove it!).
I don't claim to be a military strategist, mechanical engineer or fine any kind of mind, in fact I think my time with military intelligence may have caused my IQ to slip a few points but one thing I have over the minds of a 1898 military arms survey is hind sight. at the time that all these weapons were being tested and sent into full production and fielding it was usually a carefully guarded secret what you were using and in many cases misinformation was sent in the form of propaganda to make everyone, from the soldiers issued them to the guys on the other end of the battlefields think that you had the best rifle available, therefore, you have the greatest chance of victory.
what we have today that nobody in the trenches of WWI had is the ability to shoot all of these weapons side by side and make an opinion of what the strong points are and what the weak points of the design are.
we may not like that ammo for arisakas is hard to find or replica slings for springfields cost as much as a Mosin Nagant. we may not like the straight pull on a K31 because we are too used to shooting our mausers or we may just not like what a certain rifle was used for(IE, S.S. stamped K98s) but small issues like this that affect our opinions of rifles today and create bias meant nothing to a man that was issued these rifles and as much ammo as he could carry. if you cut out everything except what happens at the firing line it is easy to draw an opinion based on side by side comparisons. this is why anytime I consider taking a mil-surp hunting I grab my enfield no4. based solely on how they behave on the range, I have come to the conclusion that while the enfield may not give me the best chance of making a perfect hit it does have the luxury of being able to line up a quick second shot if needed and at least in my case has proven reliable enough that I can trust it to function without fail.