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Thread: EFFECTIVENESS OF THE INDIVIDUAL RIFLEMEN IN AN INFANTRY SQUAD

  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by crusader377 View Post
    This is coming from the perspective of an Artillery Officer although my company FSO time was with a light infantry company in Afghanistan. My thoughts are that your 500M+ targets are much better dealt with by your crew served weapons and your company mortars or other assets at battalion or even brigade level.
    True -- if your hands are not bound by a requirement to clear indirect fires from someone 500 miles away.

  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by crusader377 View Post
    This is coming from the perspective of an Artillery Officer although my company FSO time was with a light infantry company in Afghanistan. My thoughts are that your 500M+ targets are much better dealt with by your crew served weapons and your company mortars or other assets at battalion or even brigade level.
    Oh I completely agree. Coming from a mechanized unit and being part of the invasion of Iraq in 2003, Ive seen first hand the power that combined arms has. A handful of Bradleys and 3 or 4 Abrams produce a base of fire that is insane. We had one battle with an Iraqi unit that tried to ambush a scouting element we sent over a bridge into a farming community. They were dug in well, with machine gun nests built into the houses, a couple mortar pits, sniper perches on roofs, the whole nine yards. The tanks literally just started volley firing HE rounds at the buildings and the Scout humvees and a M113 engaged the ground troops. We then levelled everything with our 120mm mortars. We killed at least a full company of Iraqi troops within an hour with no US casualties and only one tank taking very minimal damage (practically cosmetic) from a rocket to the side. A couple weeks later we were tasked with holding a line outside of Karbala while the rest of the division got in place to hit Baghdad. Over the two days there we destroyed dozens of Republican Guard vehicles as they started to creep out of Karbala to try and engage us. Between the Bradley 25mm, the Abrams, and artillery called in by the Scouts, I dont think an enemy soldier ever got within 1000 meters of our lines. It was a pure shooting gallery. Once we hit Baghdad though, things changed. We still had the tanks and Brads to give extra firepower and cannons to use when they could, but artillery was a no go. There, the individual rifleman became much more useful. The flow of battle and limited sightlines really hampered the crew served guns as well.

    Fast forward to 2005 and I am now fighting in a rural(ish) farming area in eastern Iraq. We were securing the town of Al Muqdadiyah and it's surrounding areas. We still had some ability to use artillery and mortars but it was far more limited than 2003. We used the vehicles as our base of fire with the 240s. We rarely rolled out in humvees as there were just too many IEDs. But the Brads and tanks carried a crap load of 7.62 on tap. I dont think our tankers fired a single 120 round that deployment and the Brads fired a fairly low amount as well. But a 240 with a 1000 round belt and a 10x thermal scope makes for a great suppressive fire platform.
    Last edited by C-grunt; 06-23-21 at 18:21.
    C co 1/30th Infantry Regiment
    3rd Brigade 3rd Infantry Division
    2002-2006
    OIF 1 and 3

    IraqGunz:
    No dude is going to get shot in the chest at 300 yards and look down and say "What is that, a 3 MOA group?"

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by crusader377 View Post
    If people were truly honest with themselves, infantry rifles effective ranges have been higher than the average soldier could utilize their rifles for at least a 100 years. A British Lee-Enfield, Mauser 98, or Springfield M1903 were all capable of effective ranges of 600M to 800M. However, due to training and the relatively primative sights an average soldier could not hit a single man on the battlefield at that range.

    Actually the Springfield .45-70 trapdoor or the British Martini-Henry rifle from 150 years ago had an effective range of 400M-500M. Could your average soldier hit an individual target at that range in combat, probably not.
    You are forgetting the fact that there are such things as "area targets" . . . .

    Not all targets are "point targets" . . . .

    Infantry should not have to rely on the GPMG for suppression at ranges longer that 300 yards.

    The problem with relying on indirect fire support is the US has not fought anyone with serious counter-battery capability equal to our own since 1945, maybe 1951-52.
    Last edited by lysander; 06-24-21 at 21:23.

  4. #24
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    I wish I had my assortment of books by Col. Cooper in front of me to quote properly-
    but I know he was big on the idea of competent riflemen owning the battlefield. Utilizing tactics, marksmanship along with an effective rifle/caliber...being able to hit anything in effective range to him was very important. His book The Art of the Rifle is a must read, in my opinion.
    " Be NOT ye afraid of them..
    Remember the Lord, for He is GREAT & TERRIBLE!
    FIGHT for your bretheren..for your sons & for your daughters,
    for your wives & for your households"!

  5. #25
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    In the 70s, when it looked like the US Army would be facing a LOT more Warsaw Pact targets coming at us in Europe, training literature put out, "If I can SEE it, I can hit it. If I can hit it, I can kill it."

    Optics (ACOGs) in the SOPMOD, then individual Marine and infantry soldier issue is helping.

  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by chamber143 View Post
    The whole 556 Vs 30 cal is much like the 9 vs 45. Yeah a 30 cal hit is harder than a 556 in the same location as the 45 is over the 9. Problem with the argument is that Both a 9 and 556 is a good spot are lethal as well. We know that all the logistics and supply chain is built around 556 and that isnít changing anytime soon. Not to mention so many canít fire the soft shooting 566 well so a 7.62 is only going to be worse. Not to mention the cost of those rounds would be drastically higher to purchase than the 62 gr we use now. Remember that amateurs study tactics and professionals study logistics.
    👍 Spot on
    NRA Life Member.

  7. #27
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    A big 10-04 on that ! Without supply / re-supply, you will before you know it become 'Black' on your primary, ammunition & water, either of which will send you deep into the poop. Remember, we could debate / argue for days & days over the issue weapons & calibers, but as we know, everyone tends to have their particular opinion, usually based upon 'their' individual experiences. There are SO MANY components that have to be debated when selecting a large forces issued weapons, that many truly don't realize all the little requirements that go into the overall mix. I really hate to even bring this up, but it's somewhat similar to the semi-recent mass exodus of Law Enforcement Agencies dropping their larger caliber Duty Pistols, & ummmm, 'upgrading' to the 9x19 for overall issue. As with pretty much everything else these days, things are changing so rapidly, & LE isn't immune from from that. Respective Recruits & On Duty Personnel are much, much more diverse than ever before, while a great many unfortunately have had literally no exposure to firearms use, & or training. I guess what I'm attempting to say is that the Brass have determined that rather than increased & enhanced weapons training, both while in the Academy, & continuing as an 'In Service' Regimen, they feel simply better [ aka = much more ecnominal ] to just reduce the duty caliber thereby increasing weapon controllability, & by default also capacity. This particular view definitely does has its proponents, but then, so does the larger caliber crowd. IMHO, I view the U.S. Military's task of selecting the best suited option for the largest portion of the personnel, for the most economical choice. In the end, the 'bitter end', it seems that it always come back around to the cost, & or the lack thereof !! Hopefully in all of their thinking, debating, arguing, & tallying, they haven't forgotten the G.I. who's going to have to utilize that weapon, for better or worse.

    Best, Dom P.
    Last edited by dpast32; 06-28-21 at 07:31.

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    One thing that has not been mentioned is the requirement for a select fire weapon and why the armies went to the intermediate round. The more powerful rounds are not controllable in automatic fire. I do not believe we can have it both ways. We tried that with the M14 with the result that most of those rifles were locked for semi auto fire only.

    The studies in the 1950's recommended the intermediate round (5.56) to control the infantryman's half kilometer based on the fact that the average soldier simply couldn't see the target beyond that range. Why lug around heavier ammunition that would never be used at the 800yd+ it was designed for? If you want the longer range fine, but you will loose your automatic fire capability.

  9. #29
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    I didn't see mention of it in the attached article, but would armor penetration be a consideration?
    It's better to know a little about a lot, than a lot about a little.

  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by mlberry View Post
    One thing that has not been mentioned is the requirement for a select fire weapon and why the armies went to the intermediate round. The more powerful rounds are not controllable in automatic fire. I do not believe we can have it both ways. We tried that with the M14 with the result that most of those rifles were locked for semi auto fire only.

    The studies in the 1950's recommended the intermediate round (5.56) to control the infantryman's half kilometer based on the fact that the average soldier simply couldn't see the target beyond that range. Why lug around heavier ammunition that would never be used at the 800yd+ it was designed for? If you want the longer range fine, but you will loose your automatic fire capability.
    You bring up a valid point about the M14. Shooting one in automatic mode can be a difficult task. The old adage about shooting the M14 in full auto was "the first round hits an enemy soldier, the second round hits an enemy helicopter, the third round hits an enemy high altitude bomber and the fourth round hits an enemy satellite."
    Train 2 Win

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