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Let's discuss the marksman rifle doctrine.

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Evil Monkey, Aug 9, 2007.

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  1. Evil Monkey

    Evil Monkey member

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    From what I've learned so far is that the goal is to bridge the gap between organic riflemen and inorganic sniper units by creating a role to extended the squads effective range. The designated marksman is given a rifle to engage enemies double the range of what ordinary assault rifles are capable of. However they also can gather information about the enemy from the telescopic sight which is then used to direct heavy weapons towards.

    Here's the question: Which is more important, the doctrine of intelligence gathering or the weapons' performance?

    We see forces like Russians using a purpose built SVD firing a full power 7.62x54R. Well that's great but the Brits use an L86A2 that fires a 5.56mm from a 25" barrel. And the Germans, they just use a standard G36 just because it has a scope on it already!

    The armament chosen really gives you a good idea of their marksman rifle doctrine. The Germans would think that long range engagements are unnecessary and that intel gathering is more important. Like wise with the Brits and their 5.56mm L86.

    In the US military, there's a saying that goes "rifleman first, marksman second". I think that's how it goes but anyway, wouldn't this mean that the marksman would be a rifleman almost all the time but will be called to gather intel about the enemy sparingly? Ultimately, wouldn't this mean that maybe a 308 is not needed and that a 223 will suffice in the marksman role because killing the enemy at extended ranges is not important as is intel gathering just like the Brits and Germans are possibly using their DMR's for?

    How does all this fit into the loosely organized civilian militia in SHTF?
     
  2. praharin

    praharin Member

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    you can kill someone very dead out to 800 meters with a 77 gr OTM 5.56. its been done, and will continue to be done. you dont need a rifle to observe, you can use binoculars for that. the reason for a sdm or whatever you want to call it is to observe the enemy and take him down if need be. hes also there to provide overwatch in certain circumstances.

    in short, it is both, neither will make a designated marksmen unto itself.

    on your military saying, ive never heard it, but maybe its an army thing. however, it doenst make any sense to me, as riflemen is a skill set, while marksmanship is a single skill. every rifleman must be a marksman, but not all marksmen are riflemen.

    as for your loosly orginized militia after shtf, it depends on what happens. what if shtf is economic, not military. more important things to worry about than militia-ing at that point. for the sake of argument, i think a loosly orginized militia will be fairly impotent honestly. without training together in modern warfare there wont be much use standing to disciplined line troops. look at iraq as an example, the only way they do any real damage to our troops there is booby traps. sure, there are a few snipers hurting out men there, but the vast majority is explosives. if you want to train for shtf, the way i think youre envisioning it, get a license for demolition and start getting to know Mr. Semtex :D
     
  3. AR Hammer

    AR Hammer member

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    The roll of a 'Sniper' isn't to snipe, to be quite frank about it.
    That's why they are called 'STA' members now, not nessaraly 'Snipers'.

    The roll of a sniper is to,
    1.Remain Undetected
    2. Collect and develop ACCURATE intelligence, and report said intelligence.

    Taking a shot undermines both of the prime uses of a 'sniper'
    Once a shot is fired, successfully hitting a target or not,
    The sniper team is detected, and any intelligence is now tainted and subject to immediate change.

    Shoot an enemy soldier and you may save one life.
    Return or report accurate intelligence and you may save hundreds of lives.

    The rest of your duties as a 'STA' member,

    3. To deny the enemy of 'Assets'.
    That 'Asset' may be a commander, or it may be a radar or communications station...
    Much harder to ingress, render the asset inoperable, and egress undetected than to shoot a man from 800 yards out.

    4. To demoralize the enemy.
    Nothing much more demoralizing than the guy next to you having his head explode all over you, and you can't even locate the guy doing it...
     
  4. MVF

    MVF Member

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    As far as the the 7.62 vs. 5.56 business, if you were putting a unit together (especially in a place with wide open spaces) wouldn't you want a couple of 7.62s around just for the extra range, power and penetration?
     
  5. 336A

    336A Member

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    I would like to know what conventional Army unit is using this ammo? I have never seen or used it the last 3x over in the sandbox. This ammo is not even in the big Armys' inventory. However it is being taken into consideration to add it to the inventory (according to a small arms board). The only ones using this ammo is certain SOF, and AMU (Army Marksmanship Unit).
    And I can tell you first hand, that you can not accurately engage a point target consistently with a issued M16A4, ACOG, and issue ammo. If someone is telling you they can consistently hit a man sized target at that with the above combo then they are full of BS. There are no specialy built DM rifle either, they are all stock issued M16A4 rifles and M855 ammo.
     
  6. sacp81170a

    sacp81170a Member

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    USAF Air Base Ground Defense doctrine, as I recall it: your mission is to dominate the terrain adjacent to the base, denying the enemy the opportunity to fire on the base, its resources, and aircraft taking off and landing. The organic DM allows you to do this effectively with fewer defenders up to a point. When the enemy masses for an assault to the point that small arms and direct fire weapons fail to halt the attack, indirect weapons fire and air support along with assistance from friendly units are brought to bear. This is a general outline, but think of it this way: a fire team can typically control an area of 500 meters for planning purposes (250 meter radius). When we added the DM also trained as an observer for indirect fire, we extended this to 1000 meters per fire team(500 meter radius). This is based on ideal conditions(flat terrain, no obstructions, a lot like somewhere you'd put an airbase). Real world this depends on terrain features, available support, enemy forces, etc. of course. The farther out you can push the perimeter, the better control you have of the takeoff and landing "footprint" of the runways. This can be an extremely large area.

    In defensive operations, the DM is a force multiplier. Not having been trained extensively in assault operations over platoon strength, I can't comment on the utility of the DM in that role. We used an accurized M-16 with a 4x scope. I don't know what's being used now.
     
  7. funfaler

    funfaler Member

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    It matters very little what caliber or weapons system that someone "buys", it matters wheather they can actually shoot the rifle.

    The skill required to hit a "torso" sized target out to 100 yards, is possessed by most rifle owners. To hit out to 500 yards, takes a good bit of quality practice and some developed skill of the shooter, but is a skill level that is obtainable by most rifle owners. The skill to push lead out past 600 yards, is quite fine, and is outside the practical application of most rifle owners (the required knowledge and practice is something that most rifle owners will not do to reach this level of skill).

    There really is little reason that any rifle owner in America can not become a Rifleman, capable of being effective out to 500 yards. (If you want to know how, feel free to PM me, I will give you the info that I have used).

    The key for any American rifle owner is to learn to use HIS rifle out to at least 500 yards. This will give the Rifleman the ability/skill to shoot at 8" targets out to 200 yards (about the size of a "head target") or even 4" out to 100 yards. This level of shooting is within the capability of any rack grade rifle and the average American rifle owner, it is just a matter of if the shooter cares to put forth the effort to reach that level of skill. I guess that most do not, as you really don't see that level of skill in most rifle shooters.

    So with the above thoughts, it really means little what rifle a Rifleman finds in his hands, when he needs to make a shot, he will be better than the average non-Rifleman. I would put a Rifleman, with a Mosin-Nagant, against the average American rifle owner with an AR-15 or M1a, any day.

    It is the driver, not the weapon. If you can not hit out to 500 yards, with the rifle in your vault, you are wasting your time even considering a caliber question for a Rifleman or Designated Rifleman or what ever.
     
  8. Nickle

    Nickle Member

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    Wow, lots of stuff to discuss here.

    First off, let me tell you folks, it is the shooter, not the equipment that gets the job done.

    Carlos Hathcock, and others, could consistently hit a man sized target at 800 meters. With a tweaked M1 Garand or M14 at 1000 yards, with iron sights, no less. Check the background on the Wimbeldon Cup, competed for at Camp Perry, during the National Matches every year.

    336A, you may have never seen that ammo, but it is being used. Spec Ops and a few units that are buying it "local purchase" (with an IMPAC Card) for use in their DMR's. Black Hills is the usual vendor for it. It gets called Mk 262 or something like that.

    Also, take note, that many units have used M14's for DMR's. Yes, some are M21's, but some are not, just rack grade M14's that may or may not be scoped. Some were different state Honor Guard rifles. My state had to go out and BUY several Springfield M1A's to replace the M14's we sent overseas.

    I also am a fan of the Mosin Nagant, have several of them, including an M28 Finnish version. That model is the deadliest rifle on earth. The TWO top snipers, of all countries, of all time, are both Finns, and they both used Mosins. That was the Russo-Finnish War in 1940. The top one used an M28, got over 500 kills in less than a year. That's a lot of dead Russians. He used iron sights, and the rifle was not modified in any way. He just could shoot, and was an Eider Duck Hunter.

    Don't think I dislike AR's or any other rifles. I have an AR, carried an M16 as an issue weapon most of my time, Regular Army and Guard, totaling over 35 years. 4 years of that, I carried an M9 pistol, but now back to an M16A2.

    I've owned or handled just about every military rifle you could think of, and grew up in a gun shop. I've shot competition, specifically Bench Rest and Smallbore. Not bragging, no way, just stating my qualifications.

    I'll stand by my comments that it is the rifle, not the shooter.

    336A, I see you live in Upstate NY. Still military? Want to come to an RWVA event and shoot (don't have to be military, but, if you are, the tuition fee is FREE)?

    It's a good program, and it will make a believer out of you. We have an Instructor in the Northeast that is an Army Guardsman, and he might be able to show you some pointers (or even learn some from you) to make a believer out of you. There's an event in Proctor, VT this weekend (and one on a military range in Jericho, VT in Oct), though the training is all close range, we simulate further distance, if full distance isn't available.

    http://appleseedinfo.org/smf/index.php?topic=262.0

    http://appleseedinfo.org/smf/index.php?topic=155.0
     
  9. rero360

    rero360 Member

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    Nickle: does your unit have to sponser you in anyway for the RWVA events? and in that case do you have to use issued rifles or can you use your own personal rifles?

    I'm currently in a MP unit overseas, but I was in a scout platoon before they switched us to MPs, I always wanted to go to the state marksmanship comps but school and deployments always got in the way. I'm always looking to improve my abilities
     
  10. ReadyontheRight

    ReadyontheRight Member

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    There are many more effective tools than a rifle that a good, modern, U.S. sniper can employ to bring ordinance to a target.

    Still has to be great with a rifle though...
     
  11. SnakeEater

    SnakeEater Member

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    There's multiple variations of the rifle being used by different branches. Army is SDM-R, USMC SAM-R, and United States Navy Mark 12 Mod 0/1 Special Purpose Rifle. The Mark 12 is also in use by certain US Army units.

    I've been led to believe the majority of the special 77gr. ammo goes to the guys using the Mark 12 SPR. Accuracy and lethality are greatly extended using this ammo. Issue M855 is not a very accurate round and simply defeats the purpose of the SDM.
     
  12. W.E.G.

    W.E.G. Member

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    When the SHTF, armaments won't matter that much. Whoever avoids getting dysentery the longest wins.

    Any shooting that matters will be done at arms-length distances.
    Rifles are nice for hunting and armies. The individual better be healthy, fast on his feet, and a quick shot with a pistol.
     
  13. GunTech

    GunTech Member

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    Unless they are being shot at.

    It's amazining how range marksmanship goes right out the window when bullets are going both direction. Snipers like Hathcock, Chuck Mawhinney and Adelbert Waldron had the advantage of typically not being under fire while engaging targets. Not to denigrate their achievements, but there is a huge difference between sipers and infantry in close combat.

    Yes, you can achieve kills with the 77 gn Mk262 Mod 1. But bear in mind that at 800 meters the Mk262 has about 300 ft-lbs of energy - about the same that a 22 WMR has at the muzzle. By contrast, the M118LR special ball has more than 2x the energy.
     
  14. sacp81170a

    sacp81170a Member

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    My favorite quote from MSgt Hamilton, my first flight chief: "Them two way ranges are a b!tch." :D
     
  15. 336A

    336A Member

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    Yes as I said earlier it is being used by SOF soldiers that I know. And you should see the conditition that those M14 rifles are in. A lot of them are very battered and close to being on their last leg. I was talking to a friend who just got back from Afghanastan yesterday on this topic. He was telling me how the M14s' looked as if they went to a bad plastic surgeon. I am not going to brag either or turn this into some kind of dispute here. But as a Advanced Rifle Marksmanship instuctor, and having been through a certain long range military rifle interdiction course I do know what the M4/M16 is capable of. Some units are buying the ammo on their IMPAC cards but not as many as most here think. And with that a lot of folks out there have little knowledge of how to sight their rifles with this ammo. Remember the ACOG sight is calibrated for M855 not Mk 12. And for that matter most people in a regular infantry line company lack basic long range rifle marksmanship skills such as how to read the wind properly. By and large most units (not all) will issue a soldier the DMR who qalifies expert and leave it at that. I would love to attend that event in VT but sadly I can't I am to busy here.
     
  16. U.S.SFC_RET

    U.S.SFC_RET Member

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    Sniper teams usually take a shot from a minimum of 600 meters out. This is to minimize being detected. It is an extremely dangerous job. Any army worth their salt will put in place counter sniper teams with or without dogs to find them. This is why it is critical to shoot from a minimum of 600 meters and hightail it or stay put. Commanders who are responsible for the most part don't know how to employ sniper teams effectively to ensure their safety.
     
  17. JWarren

    JWarren Member

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    Oh EM.... you just had to tie this to a SHTF question. into it. Now I have to post on this thread.

    It's kinda like a comedian I heard once who explained that he used to date Cher. He said he didn't want to, but it was just his turn.

    I'm kinda like that with these threads.



    As I am oft to say when dealing with SHTF scenerios, what scenerio would you envision as a SHTF? From the information you provided in the original post and the question you asked, I am lead to believe we are talking about either a governmental meltdown such as revolution, or a societal meltdown where basically all bets are off and we are all banding into tribes to counter wave after wave of mutant zombie squirrels.

    Now, just for disclaimer I'll mention that SHTF is an over-reaching term that encompasses too much for most discusssions. The most likely SHTF scenerio is natural disasters where any civilian militia activites come in well behind meeting immediate needs of survivial. Frankly, any attempt to organize militias is light years behind meeting those immediate needs and providing security for those close to you. You won't be roaming your neighborhoods in organized backs. You'll spend your days recovering from whatever nature threw in your face.

    However, as I mentioned this does not seem to be the focus of this thread. We are talking about either governmental meltdown or TEOTWAWKI (The End Of The World As We Know It).


    I am doing a lot of imagining here since we have little basis for reference in the US.

    For a governmental meltdown/revolution situation, if one is to look for an example in US history, the closest will be the Civil War. Problem with this is that there was really no loosely organized militias. You joined up to your state's milita (if in the South) and reported in for conventional warfare and a painful death from infection shortly thereafter.

    However, there are still important facts/lessons to be learned for the average civillian if one looks hard enough. For me, my lessons come from the experiences of my family in the CW. Not all of my family were able to go off to war, so there were a number of people who stayed on the homestead.

    How did the CW affect those who were essentially sitting out the actual combat?

    We had some experience with it. The union army came through our homestead. At the time, it was more of a fort than a house. The home was originally a fort set up by the first of us here. He was a Methodist missionary to the Choctaw Indian tribe. Because of the threat of hostile possibilities, the home was self-contained-- it had a high wall around it, its own well, mills, food stores, etc.

    In essence, it was set up a lot like we think when preparing for a SHTF-- prepared. Well, when the Union Army came through, they took everything they could carry off in order to feed their troops. What they couldn't carry off, they destroyed or killed. They slaughtered animals for food and threw the entrails down the well in order to spoil it-- preventing it to be used by their enemy or by my family. Needless to say, the Union left my family in considerably dire straits-- even though those on the homestead were not involved directly in the war.

    In a governmental meltdown/revolution scenerio, I doubt there will be any opportunity to be a "bystander." You'll have to pick a side and stand by it. Yours supplies should not be easily found or there should be backup plans. Frankly, it would be a nasty thing.

    I don't see much in the way of a semi-organized milita in this scenerio. It's one of those "Fish or cut bait" type of things. If you are involved in the fight, you are in the fight. If you aren't in the fight, you are keeping as low a profile as you can. You'll want the ability to DEEPLY hide any evidence of firearms when needed. I promise you that it is VERY unlikely that an army would let you keep your semi-auto AK in your house if they saw it.



    For a TEOTWAWKI, well this goes the direcition of fantasy. Frankly, we have little in US history to draw from. There are places where societal meltdown has occured in parts of the world, but its never been complete.

    I'd imagine that you'd still do your best to keep a low profile. You'd keep arms close and defend your property and loved ones as you are able to. I'd think marksmanship would be a HIGH priority due to the limited supply of ammunition and lack of reasonable ways to replenish this resource. Besides, even without defense consideration if you have to hunt, a missed shot is a missed meal.

    Beyond that, who can say?


    I think the crux of the arguement is what role is being a marksman in these scenerios. All I can say is that a marksman is always valued. The better you are, the better you are.

    Some are going to be better at others. In a non-conventional insurgency scenerio, there are some that would give any organized force a fit. Some won't even get off a shot.


    I am sure I missed a lot, but I need another cup of coffee and I'm still waking up.



    -- John
     
  18. Nickle

    Nickle Member

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    Quote Rero360:

    Nope, they don't sponsor the program, other than allowing us to use some of the facilities on some states. We can't use our issued M16A2's for the program, we have to use personal rifles.

    I just happen to be an RWVA Instructor, and an Army Guardsman, the only one with that combination.

    If you're up in the Northeast area, or attend one of our events (or ANY RWVA event I'm at), we can arrange a loaner rifle for yoy to use.

    A Service member that is always looking to improve his abilities is a smart troop. I see we have several smart troops here. That's a GOOD thing.

    336A, you will get no argument from me, as what you just posted pretty much mirrors my experience and knowledge of the situation. You're 100% right, few units are IMPAC Purchasing the good ammo, and M855 Ball isn't up to using at 800 yards, though it will get the job done SOMETIMES.

    We also do events in NY state, got a few coming up next year (Auburn, and maybe Van Etten again), so there may be one in your area. We would LOVE to have you at one, as I'm sure there's stuff I could learn from you.

    Folks, we do events in many states, all over the Continental US.
     
  19. Z_Infidel

    Z_Infidel Member

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    Of course there's no way to predict this but in hypothetical situations where the civilian militia will be actively fighting an enemy, I sincerely hope the enemy is not the U.S. professional military. Hopefully the military and the militia will be on the same side. If war comes to our shores, the militia will be involved, probably whether the government likes it or not. Homes and communities will need to be protected. Let the professional military handle heavy engagements -- it's their job to fight and win wars.

    And if that day ever comes, rifles won't just be "nice to have" -- they'll be essential (IMO). If we have rifles, we can't be conquered or tyrannized.
     
  20. JWarren

    JWarren Member

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    Z Infidel,

    I like your take on this.


    -- John
     
  21. funfaler

    funfaler Member

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    +1 On the Z comment.
     
  22. USSR

    USSR Member

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    Nickle,

    Van Etten? I live about 25 miles from Van Etten, and would be happy if you could PM me with details about the shoots there. I'd just like to add to this discussion: If you don't have experience shooting 600 - 1,000 yards and dealing with the wind, I don't care how good of a shot you are at 300 yards, you will not be effective at the longer ranges. Also, there is a reason that almost to a man, F Class T/R shooters who are restricted to either .308 or .223, choose the .308 to shoot.

    Don
     
  23. praharin

    praharin Member

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    336a, i was never in the big army as you put it. i was in the marine corps. i carried 77gr (maybe it was 75) 5.56 ammo for a short time. it was taken away because one of the force recon marines with the MEU had a round with a double charge or something (never got a full story) no one was hurt.

    you are also incorrect, there is a purpose built designated marksmens rifle. the DMR as its known in the corps is a slightly modified m14. the corps also has the SAM-R which is a highly modified m16a4. just because you didnt see it in the army doesnt mean its not out there doing good.
     
  24. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    Yes there is. A lack of ranges with those kind of facilities.
     
  25. funfaler

    funfaler Member

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    There are plenty of places to learn the skills to be able to put lead on a target out to 500 yards. Give me your ZIP, I will find one close to you ;)
     
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