Do you think M4 is the right weapon?


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Gunpacker
August 26, 2005, 04:18 PM
Please Visit and read this article before commenting. Especially interesting when Sgt. tackles armed bad guy when his rifle runs dry. Talk about balls.

http://michaelyon.blogspot.com/2005/08/gates-of-fire.html

Quote from Michael Yon Blog, journalist in Iraq. Wonderful read, and the quote comes near the end.

"Prosser shot the man at least four times with his M4 rifle. But the American M4 rifles are weak--after Prosser landed three nearly point blank shots in the man's abdomen, splattering a testicle with a fourth, the man just staggered back, regrouped and tried to shoot Prosser." :eek: :eek:

IMO, we need far more journalists like this guy. Tales of heroism like this get no publicity and deeds such as these guys perform every day speak of heroism that is beyond belief. Our nation has never had better in the field.

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Delmar
August 26, 2005, 04:29 PM
Do you think M4 is the right weapon?

Not for a general issue rifle. Maybe the short length is good for house clearing, but I have always been of the belief that the smaller the bullet diameter, the faster you have to drive it in order to be effective. Sawing barrel length off the A2 decreases the lethality of the round.

Spot77
August 26, 2005, 04:34 PM
Wasn't the strategy (especially the use of FMJ ammo) to cause injury to an enemy combatant so others will be tied up trying to render aid?

That certainly won't work on an enemy that looks forward to death and rewards its colleagues who blow themselves up daily.

ShackleMeNot
August 26, 2005, 04:42 PM
He shot him in the gut... Yes, it was three times but it's going to take time for someone to die.

WT
August 26, 2005, 04:47 PM
Gut shots aren't instantaneous stoppers. Painful yes, but OSS, not necessarily.

Correia
August 26, 2005, 04:49 PM
Whatever your opinon of the .223, gut shots are not fast killers. Small dear run forever even after their stomach has been pulped by a 30-06.

sumpnz
August 26, 2005, 04:50 PM
Had those shots been three in the upper chest, one in the head (or even without the one in the head) the guy would have dropped and died very quickly. By shooting him three times in the gut, and once in the nuts he failed to hit sufficiently lethal spots to take the jihadi out of the fight. I rather doubt a FAL would have produced substantially different results, all else being equal.

Derek Zeanah
August 26, 2005, 04:50 PM
I think there are a number of advantages the M16 platform provides: It's easy to shoot, with low recoil and good ergonomics, even for gun-shy 4'9" female supply-types.
It does what it's required to do under 75m. Most of the time.
The M4 seems like a pretty useful size to be thrown into a truck or an armored vehicle. Fits better than an M14, and has a bit more oomph than a pistol or subgun
30 round mags and small ammo size. An LBE can carry 6 M16 mags (plus one in weapon, for a combat load of 210 rounds) or 4 .308 mags (plus one on the weapon, offering a combat load of 100 rounds) in the layout they were issued to me, so you're looking at more than twice the ammo for a given size/weight. Probably a good thing for an army that focuses on fire superiority over focused fire (not arguing with this, by the way -- it's just the way we fight in an age of good comms, arty, and air support).
Overpenetration in CQB situations is less than any other the other rifle options (and even the M9, if you believe the tests people occasionally run).These shouldn't be overlooked in an age where the majority of combat arms enlistees (those wanting to be placed in harm's way) have no real firearms experience.

It's a trade-off, certainly. But it's not an all-bad decision.

Gunpacker
August 26, 2005, 04:58 PM
Yes it takes time for someone to die, but that doesn't answer the question. Is the loss of effectiveness of the lower velocity, less disruptive ss109 from the M4 a good way to go. A higher velocity 55 grain bullet that upset and blew big holes, could drop a person better in CQB quicker IMO. Tradeoffs are at longer range where opponents are less dangerous. I just think that a soldier should not have to trade off one for the other. Maybe the ss109 bullet was a bad direction, and maybe a heavier bullet that could be more effective at short range might have been designed. However, the M4 has also traded off 350 fps in velocity, or 10% of velocity, which also sacrifices some shock trauma of the bullet even without upsetting. Spine can be disrupted by near misses also if surrounding tissue is shocked hard enough. That is significant with a small caliber bullet that normally would rely on high velocity shock as part of its effectiveness. Many folks that would say that the .45 ACP is the greatest would also stand up for the .223 it seems.

DelayedReaction
August 26, 2005, 05:06 PM
At the ranges they're dealing with, I'm surprised noone is armed with a shotgun.

Blackhawk 6
August 26, 2005, 05:12 PM
...splattering a testicle with a fourth, the man just staggered back, regrouped and tried to shoot Prosser.

Says a lot about the shootee, not the weapon.

El Tejon
August 26, 2005, 05:24 PM
Firearms are not magic. They are merely remote control drills.

Carlos Hathcock had to shoot a man seven (7) times--with a .308. Now in THRland .308 is tH3 d34dly; reality is much different.

The answer lies in software, not hardware.

cslinger
August 26, 2005, 06:10 PM
Blackhawk 6,

.splattering a testicle with a fourth, the man just staggered back, regrouped and tried to shoot Prosser.


Says a lot about the shootee, not the weapon.

Exactly what I was thinking. You "splatter" one of my twins and that game is over and I am taking my marbles.....well marble and going home. I get the willies just thinking about it.

Bridger
August 26, 2005, 06:33 PM
The M4 is a fine rifle.

Issues here? The ss109 bullet as already mentioned. It's not like the enemy is wearing much body armor now are they? Should issue 55 grain stuff or the 77 grain mk262 or whatever it is to everyone.

And as already mentioned, shooting someone in the guts isn't really an instant stopper.

miko
August 26, 2005, 07:10 PM
... so you're looking at more than twice the ammo for a given size/weight.

Twice the number. Not twice the weight. Not twice the energy.

How many ss109 bullets out of 210 will go through a clay wall hiding the ambushers? Zero.

How many 308 bullets out of 100 will do the same? Probably 100.

Quite a difference in firepower, unlless the adversary is really cooperating.

miko

Derek Zeanah
August 26, 2005, 07:37 PM
How many ss109 bullets out of 210 will go through a clay wall hiding the ambushers? Zero.That part of the argument wasn't "there's no need to turn cover into concealment, so I'd personally choose to be equipped with a .223 if I was going to see combat." It was "the .223 seems more effective when the SOP is to achieve fire superiority, deny the enemy the ability to move, then blow the crap out of them with high explosive launched from a long way away, because a unit can carry twice the ammo as they could with a .308."

Firepower matters in such cases. Sorry if you disagree.

gripper
August 26, 2005, 07:56 PM
Three (apparent) choices :

A)Continue as we are,keep the M4 and the 62 grain stuff.

B)Issue EVERYONE the 77 grain loadings.

C)Swap EVERYONES uppers for 6.8mm,come up with a stop gap measure for the belt fed SAW's.

I'd prefer to go to a larger caliber,eiither bringing back the 7.62 NATO,or with the 6.8(or 6.5 Grendel).But it probably won't happen.
An interesting sub-set here would be to lose the short barrrle M4's for all but dedicated "space saving needed" jobs,and re-standardize the 20 inch A2's and so on.This would be a good choice especially if they standardize on the MK262 type loadings.
Here's a wild -@ass brainstorm....any thoughts on the feasibility of the 7mm08,or the .260 Remmington in a future-developement type weapons system???Maybe something like an metric FAL with a reciprocating bolthandle????Hey,I can dream,can't I?? :cool:

Gunpacker
August 26, 2005, 08:23 PM
There is another alternative. Maybe equip a portion of the rifle squad with special purpose weapons designed to do the job at long range and penetrate cover. Something bigger than .223, like the M14. They could take the place of the job formerly done by the BAR. Maybe fire teams of one each, big and little. One for supressive fire at close range, one for slower aimed fire, or fire at cover. Platoons used to carry ammo for the BAR simply because it gave greater firepower in instances where it was needed. Not everyone would need them, but they would be available when necessary. I would think that an M14 nearby would be a comforting feeling. SAW won't do the same job, and the full size machine gun does not seem to exist where the rifle teams are going. Only the bad guys seem to have the big boomers capable of penetrating walls. Yes, our guys can call in helicopters, but they aren't always available.

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