View Full Version : Had it with the M16/M14/XM8/AK threads

April 4, 2005, 06:44 PM
Okay, I am sick of everyone posting about M16 ineffectiveness and soldiers using AKs instead of their issue weapons when this is all based on rumors and innuendo they have heard. So, to those who have fought in combat (Vietnam, Urgent Fury, Just Cause, Desert Storm, Enduring Freedom, Iraqi Freedom, etc.), if you had a longarm, what did you carry? If you would have rather had something else, please post it below. I had an M16A2 for a longarm and I wouldn't have given it up for anything, given my mission. If I had been out in Al Anbar province patrolling the desert instead of in the city, I would have wanted an M14, but the M16 was as close to perfect as I needed.

April 4, 2005, 06:58 PM
I was authorized to carry an HK G3... very effective weapon, which developed my passion for H&K.

Semper Fi.

Lawyer Daggit
April 4, 2005, 07:41 PM
The innefectiveness of the 5.56 round is not being spread by 'rumour and innuedno'. It is a varmint round and is used because it wounds rather than kills.

I think most people have the intelligence to separate the round from the gun, and regard the M16 in its current form to be an excellent and dependable rifle. As for the round it is chambered for- BLAH!!!

April 4, 2005, 07:48 PM
Lawyer Daggit

I saw allot of guys killed with that ineffective round. Funny thing was I don't think they would have been any deader with a bigger bullet.

And the military urban legend about wounding vice killering is just rehashed BS, brought to us by the same people who claim you cannot use 50s or WP on troops in the open and Russians build their weapons slightly larger so they can use captured Western Ammo.

April 4, 2005, 09:51 PM
There was nothing wrong with the M-16 after they took out the bugs. The real problem was the ammo. If we able to use hollow points or copper jacketed soft points, it would have been a different story.
It drove me insane to think that the government sent me overseas for the soul purpose to kill, or be killed, but yet they dictated to me what kind of ammo I had to use? Bizzare thinking.
My company had the "anything goes" attitude. We used any and all the weapons we could find to fit the situation.
The AK-47 was the perferred weapon of choice over the M-16. The projectile did not deflect as easily, and it had more knock down power. Additionally, when I was in Vietnam 67/68, 30 round mags for the M-16 were not easy to find, mostly 20 rounders. All the AK's had 30 rounders, giving you more fire power.
Eventually, we had to give the AK's up. So many guys had them that at night time it was difficult to tell who the enemy or friendly's were. Since the AK had a distinct "crackle" to it when it fired, most guys fired at the muzzle flash or crackle sound. As a result, we had some casualities due to friendly fire.

April 4, 2005, 11:52 PM
I used an M16A2 and would not have traded for one damn thing you could have offered me.
In our battalion, even touching an enemy weapon without permission from chain of command was grounds for a feild grade article 15.(although our armorer did secret away a Sten for quite some time).
That being said, I can think of times I would have liked to have an additional weapon. A Ruger P-series .45 would have made me a happy camper.

I can tell you all kinds of stories about the effectiveness of the round, but my personal experience with it is this.

I shot 2 people with it, they are dead.

I also engaged several vehicles, fighting positions, and buildings. I will not comment on them just because there is no way to measure effectiveness in that situation.

April 5, 2005, 12:24 AM
Speaking of 'rumour and innuedno': It is a varmint round and is used because it wounds rather than kills.
Lawyer, cite me ONE military or even half way decent literary source for this factoid. You are repeating old crap that has no basis in the history of the AR15's development or adoption.

I'd really like to know why you feel the need to repeat this jem that you have no factual basis for.

Mike F.
April 5, 2005, 05:32 PM
(jailbait says)
i think this topic has been way over done.

personally, give me anything firing 7.62 or better (.308 .300winmag). That includes the ak47, sks, or siaga series weapons. oh, and fals....

The Body Bagger
April 5, 2005, 05:48 PM
are there really that many of us who have carried in combat or combat zones? And who's the WARSAW pact guy who carried an Kalishnakov?

April 5, 2005, 05:54 PM
Frankly these threads are no more lame than a lot of them. I read them all.

Death from Afar
April 5, 2005, 07:48 PM
I carried an IW Steyr AUG for many years and I really rate them. I would much rather have the extra rounds and lightness of a 5.56mm than the 120 rounds we were carrying in the L1A1 days.

April 5, 2005, 07:50 PM
I think most people have the intelligence to separate the round from the gun, and regard the M16 in its current form to be an excellent and dependable rifle. As for the round it is chambered for- BLAH!!!

I will agree with you there ;) 'Cept I wouldn't be caught dead with a plastic gun. :barf: Just personal preference is all.

April 5, 2005, 11:34 PM
Let's see, so far only one guy who carried the AK-47 in preference to an issue weapon, and that was 37+ years ago. So where are all the guys who ditched their weapons and picked up enemy AKs? According to the internet commandos and mall ninjas, entire divisions have put their M16s/ M4s away in the arms rooms and grabbed enemy weapons and ammo that they picked up. Here's a little inside info for those with no experience in small-unit level tactics: You don't always hold your fire until you have a clean shot. If I am engaging someone who is barricaded behind something that a .50 cal is not going to go through, I'm still going to lay down suppressive fire on the barricade, probably about one round per second. Why? So the BG keeps his head down and does not engage my wingman while he bounds forward to a closer firing position. I expect him to do the same when I bound past him closer to the BG. This will continue until we get close enough to flank around the barrier. So why should I carry heavier ammo? I won't be able to carry as much 7.62 as I carry in 5.56 without overexerting myself. As a matter of fact, eight M16 magazines, two M9 magazines, a GPS, an infrared beacon, and first aid gear completely filled up the front of my Interceptor body armor, so I didn't have any extra room for AK mags. If I had mounted them lower on my vest than the M16 mags to make up for the space, they would have interfered with my legs. So, by accepting lighter and smaller rounds, I can carry more ammo, allowing me to perform my tactics longer than I would with less, but possibly (nothing is a definite) more effective ammo.

Jonathon, if you don't want to carry a plastic gun or 5.56 ammo, don't join the military. It's an all-volunteer force, nobody is going to make you join.

April 6, 2005, 12:40 AM
IZinterrogator.....If a .50 Cal. would not do the trick, I would assume that it was mounted on something that had more fire power. Use the 106 Recoiless Rife, Laws Rockets, hand grenades, or whatever fancy shoulder fire weapon they use today. My experience was never expose or jepardize the life of any of your men until you have exhaused every means to take an objective. Call for fire support first, unless it's "Urgent" that you take the objective.
As for carrying more ammo I would agree if your beating the bush and miles from any supply line like it was in Vietnam. However, in todays fighting, I don't think our troops are as isolated from the supply line as we were 37+ years ago. From what I hear and see (My VFW adopted the 301st Regt. which is in Iraq as I type) the troops need toilet articles more than ammo. Never have I heard of any need for ammo. The supply line is right on their heels. For Pete's sake, they don't even drink water from their canteens, many if not all the troops over there drink bottled water! Times have changed on the battle field but one thing has not, people still die.
God Bless the troops and lets keep the flags flying for them!

April 6, 2005, 03:21 AM
TPAW, the biggest gun on my team is a SAW until we reconfigure under the new UA system. Then it is supposed to be a M240. We'll see. My point, though, was that in urban fighting, you can't always call in the big guns. Nobody has ever cleared a house with a howitzer.

As for resupply, my friend fought in Mogadishu. The worst experience he had there was being in the middle of a firefight trying to cram stripper clips in his mags because they had shot the mags dry. So why would he want to start with less shots? For that matter, why would I want to start with less?

April 6, 2005, 06:43 AM
I was authorized to carry an HK G3... very effective weapon, which developed my passion for H&K.

Semper Fi.

What unit in the USMC issues the G3?

I found this comment curious enough to make me do a little digging. That led to me finding this (http://www.thefiringline.com/forums/showthread.php?p=1528247#post1528247) thread, where you mention your 19 year-old son, and this (http://www.thefiringline.com/forums/showthread.php?p=1520954#post1520954) one, where you mentioned having your MAC-10 since '85. Now, in this (http://www.thefiringline.com/forums/showthread.php?p=1529069#post1529069) thread you explain that you're a 27 year-old ex-USMC E-5 with a $250k mortgage, paid off '04 Accord, tats, and a motivated outlook on life. I'd say you're motivated! Heck, it must take a lot of motivation to get your first NFA weapon at age seven and to become a father at age eight! :eek:

April 6, 2005, 07:57 AM
Yeah but kids grow up fast these days.

April 6, 2005, 10:04 AM
IZinterrogator......Every situation is approached accordingly, and tactics will vary depending on who's calling the shots. Both good and bad decisions were made in the past, and I'm sure the trend will continue in the future.
Your statement "Nobody has ever cleared a house with a howitzer" is amusing. During the battle of Kontum City in Vietnam, and other cities like it, we called in many fire missions to level buildings where the enemy was hiding before we moved in. And I must say, the howitzers did an excellent job! I take my hat off to the Red Leg Guys. A good fire base can drop them on a dime! It was SOP. If necessary, Tac Air support was also called in. Why put good men in harms way when the big guns can vaporize your target? Let the tanks and dusters clear the way as well, those guys love to vent! They too, do a great job. After all is said and done, we grunts move in.
Hey, this can go round and round. Every situation is different and calls for different stragities. If this were a boxing match I'd say it's a draw. Besides, our government is fighting a surgical and politically correct police action. In my police action, like WW2, it was "level everything!"
Sounds like your still in the service? If so, my best to you and thank you for serving. If I was not old, fat and gray, I would be proud to serve with you.
Let's thank God we are here to talk about it.

April 6, 2005, 10:22 AM
We had the M-14, being we were a communications outfit, mostly stationary except for convoy runs, then we had M-3 grease guns, as backups on the truck. The M-14 was a good rifle although a bit heavy with 6 mags,as compared to the M-16 which most of the inf. guys carried. In 67-68 we had an assortment of weapons at our disposal, Stevens shotguns, M-3, a few Thompsons, M-60, M-2, M-79, M-72 LAW, and just about everyone had a 45acp. :)

April 6, 2005, 01:37 PM
TPAW, it's the ROE these days. You know how that goes. What was acceptable during your service would be a media nightmare during mine. Remember the tank that shot the sniper in Baghdad in April '03? Killed a few journalists that were staying in the hotel also and caused us big problems with the press. You're right that this will go around and around. When you were in the Army, I bet you could fire counterbattery fire all day if it was warranted. We haven't been able to do that since the interim government took over. These days, we just lock the UAV onto the shooter and send a helicopter to do the job. :D It's a little cleaner. :p

April 6, 2005, 05:27 PM
IZinterrogater......Roger that on the counterbattery. As for the media, my CO never allowed them to go with us on missions. Because we were almost always choppered in, he would tell the press that any extra room on the chopper, if any, was needed for ammo, medical supplies, body bags and rations. We never had to worry about a camera being over our shoulders. If you get my drift. No hands were tied behind our backs.
I truly believe that the way the war is being fought now, it's getting people killed and wounded unnecessaryly. You guys can't make a move without the whole world watching you. How the hell can you fight a war like that. It's a shame you can't get rid of the media and proceed to kick ass without worrying about who's watching.
Keep the flags flying!

The Body Bagger
April 6, 2005, 05:52 PM
still curious as to the two guys that carried AK's in combat.

April 6, 2005, 07:17 PM
I am a US Marine and carried one in OIF 1, it was a very nice Russian milled folder that I took off an officer. The reason for having the AK was Staff NCOs and Officers didn't rate an M16 and I started the war with a pistol, consequently didn't have a rifle. So I got one as soon as I could. Nice weapon but I perfer an M16.

April 6, 2005, 08:24 PM
The BODY BAGGER......I carried the AK at times. We would take them off the emeny KIA's while doing body counts, and trade them for other goodies with the guys back at base camp who were support troops and not infantry. They were always looking for souviners. Why such a curiousity BODY BAGGER, it was a very common practice in the Central Highlands in 67/68 when I was there. Some guys that had connections with people in the Air Force who flew sorties into Pleiku (Camp Enire, 4th Infantry Division Base Camp), even managed to get them home. It was not a big deal. Many other interesting "Items" made it back to the States as well!

April 6, 2005, 08:33 PM
I found this comment curious enough to make me do a little digging. That led to me finding this thread, where you mention your 19 year-old son, and this one, where you mentioned having your MAC-10 since '85. Now, in this thread you explain that you're a 27 year-old ex-USMC E-5 with a $250k mortgage, paid off '04 Accord, tats, and a motivated outlook on life. I'd say you're motivated! Heck, it must take a lot of motivation to get your first NFA weapon at age seven and to become a father at age eight!


April 6, 2005, 09:41 PM
You should realize that the M-16 you carried was NOT your Father's
M-16. The M-16 of todays' military is so much better than the one we
carried in Viet Nam in the 60s and early 70s, there should be no comparison.

My first tour in Viet Nam, I was issued a worn-out M-16 and ten 20 rnd.
magazines. This was early 1969. There WERE no 30 rnd. magazines to be had then. Back then the Marine Corps was the red-headed step-child when it came to weapons replacements. In effect, we got what the Army gave up when they got the "latest and greatest"weapons. The rifle they issued me was a Colt, but notice I said "M-16". Not even an M-16 A-effing-One! A bare-bones, three-pronged flash suppressor, M-16. But hey, I was a Marine, and it was my rifle, and I carried it, and shot the hell out of it. I may have even put a few rounds into an enemy or two. I would have given my left "whatever" for an M-14 that I could have shot accurately out to three or four hundred yards, but it wasn't possible.

A month into my second tour, I convinced my platoon sergeant I should
carry the M-79 grenade launcher. I had a little experience with it, and I knew
it was as good a weapon as the M-16s we had at the time. Plus I got a
.45 pistol to carry with it. For "close-up" protection.

I'm a pretty good shot. I qualified "Expert" with the M-14 in boot camp.
And I used to shoot jack rabbits on the run at 60 to 80 yards with a .22
when I was a kid in West Texas. But that M-16 they gave us back in the
60s just couldn't do what I wanted it to do. So how about giving us old-
timers a break and realizing that the M-16 you are talking about is a FAR
cry from the P.O.S we had to deal with forty years ago.


April 6, 2005, 10:26 PM
What unit in the USMC issues the G3?

I found this comment curious enough to make me do a little digging. That led to me finding this thread, where you mention your 19 year-old son, and this one, where you mentioned having your MAC-10 since '85. Now, in this thread you explain that you're a 27 year-old ex-USMC E-5 with a $250k mortgage, paid off '04 Accord, tats, and a motivated outlook on life. I'd say you're motivated! Heck, it must take a lot of motivation to get your first NFA weapon at age seven and to become a father at age eight!

Touche, Tamara!


April 7, 2005, 02:38 PM
I listened to a presentation given by a Major in the Army Reserves who just returned from Afghanistan. He carried an AK-47 the entire time over there.

I don't think he ever fired a round at anyone, so I don't know why he thought it best to ditch the M-16 back in his tent for safekeeping.

April 8, 2005, 10:25 PM
Walter, I agree that my M16 is not the same as my father's, especially since he carried an M1 from '58-'60. :D But I know where you're coming from. If you had the Army castoffs with the three-prong suppressor, it was probably the original with the non-chrome-lined barrel and chamber that would rust up badly in the humidity of the jungle. I would have probably ditched that one, too.

artsmom, that made me laugh. One would think that a trooper in Afghanistan would want the M16 due to range. A hit with a 5.56 at 500 meters hurts more that a miss with a 7.62x39. :D Anyone here with an AK (not a Draganov or other sniper variant) that can make regular hits over 400 meters? I have heard that the round has too much drop for extended ranges, but that was from magazine articles and I want the truth from a real shooter's mouth.

April 9, 2005, 11:02 AM

Thanks for starting this thread. I too am tired of the gun rag review on weapons and performance plus the every present use of Blackhawk Down as justification for problems with the M4/Ar-15.

I carried an M4 (C8) in Afghanistan in 02 while attached to 3rd Bde of the 101st. After Operation Annacoda, there were no complaints in any of the AARs concerning the M4 or 5.56mm. Concerns were about training and upgrades to the rifle such as improved optics or upgraded M68. About a month after I get home there are these "official" reports quoted on the internet and gunrags concerning the complete failure of the M4. They even quoted parts of the AAR put cleverly changed the context. People have agendas and sometimes reality has a strange way of ruining a good concept.

Soldiers fight as teams with other weapons systems to support them. 240B, SAW, snipers rifles, DMR type rifles, Mk19, M2s, etc all work together. There is no universal weapon. Each weapon is like a tool in the tool box and the platoon leader maximizes the effectiveness of the tools he has. He trains hard and uses what he has the absolute best. In urban operations where ranges rarely exceed 100m, the compact nature of the M4, couple with the ammunition load and the mature use of NVGs and PEQ2/PAQ4C allow troops to dominate particularly at night. Night and urban fighting is a significant part of the future and the M4 is doing a great job. But for those who love the 7.62mm, the platoon and company have them in 240Bs and sniper rifles and now some m14 DMR rifles. It is all a balance. There is no perfect weapon, there is no one tool to solve all problems.....well a JDAM kind of is but that is another story!

Rest assured the M4 is doing exactly what it is suppose to but not everyone needs to have an M4 nor an M14 or anything else for that matter. A balance of weapons allows the platoon to do its job.

People without operational experience often relate combat to an OK corral type engagement, two or three fighting two or three badguys separated by distance X using cover Y and ammunition Z. They then anylize it from that perspective drawing universal conclusions. If they had an M14 they could of shot them out to 600m! they would say, but in reality that is what they have the DMR, sniper and 240B plus all the bigger stuff. This looks good in a movie but there is more to it in reality. What about the platoon weapons det, the tank that is supporting them, the APC or gunship that is supporting them? Three guys don't attack alone. Everyone is part of a team not just a couple of individuals. Until the plasma rifle in the 40 watt range comes online, it is a balancing act, one that the M4 in my opinion is part of and doing well. The army and marines are reacting to changes and modifying the tools in the tool box...as they should. This demonstrates the flexibility and adaptablity of the modern soldier. Adapt, improvise, overcome.

The example of the MPs who recently handed the insurgents their asses is a good one on balance and most importantly training. The leaders in the team recognized the importance for aggressive and realistic live fire training. The result was obvious. Days prior to the incident they had just completed an live fire range which in essence, rehearsed the very attack they responded to. Training is the key, not bigger calibers or different rifles. Use what you have to maximum and train your people to the highest levels. I remember the motto More sweat less blood. I hold this true, train hard.....

If you are talking being an armed citizen particularly fighting mutant zombies, your choice of caliber might be different. I am not up to speed with terminal ballistics on undead zombies but the fragmentation threshold or penetration of the 5.56 might not be sufficent. I defer to those with more experience in this area. :D

What I choose for HD defence is certainly going to be different from what I use overseas in combat. Firstly and most importantly, I can select the rifle and ammunition that meets my needs as I will be alone. The factors for this selection will vary greatly to the task and the pros and cons of different systems. Secondly I have the ability to somewhat rehearse and control the circumstances of the incident particularly in a defensive posture...something troops don't get the ability to do.

So in short, what the troops have is fine. Training is the key to success. Train hard and often. More sweat, less blood.


April 9, 2005, 12:01 PM
Jeff, don't confuse people with reality.

April 9, 2005, 05:16 PM
MORPHEUS32 Very well put! My experiences as an infantryman in Vietnam taught me many things, one of which is the fact that every weapon has it's purpose and limitations. No one weapon can do it all. When all is said and done, hard training and teamwork will help reduce the amount of needed body bags. To know, is to have been there.
Thank you for your service.....Welcome home! Airborne!

April 9, 2005, 07:16 PM
You said it better than I ever could. Thanks.

April 12, 2005, 04:10 PM
Nobody has carried a SAW. These things have been around for 20 years and have been used in Desert Storm, Bosnia, Kosovo, Afghanistan, and Iraq. I figured there would be more. I hauled the SAW around for a year or so in garrison, but switched to the M16/M203 combo in the summer of 2001. Any other former SAW gunners out there, combat or not?