m4 or not m4
back on august 3rd, cliff over at 'right side of lowell' examined the us choices for outfitting the afghan army, between our own m16 and the russian ak47. well, the AP just released their coverage of a "detailed study of the attack [on US troops in the village of wanat in 2008] by a military historian" that found US weapons failing "repeatedly at a 'critical moment' during the firefight", and they just put another log on that fire, to say the least. the next series of quotes from tom coburn can't be far behind.
the question for the afghan quartermasters was expressed as an interest in accuracy as well as durability, and the psychological edge provided by the "black rifles". well, my original comment to cliff was perhaps regarded as a bit flip, but it was sincere--no army on the planet, not least of all our own, is as accurate with a rifle as the swiss, and this has been the consistent case for the better part of a century. observing that our weapons continue to appear over-engineered and under-performing under the hardest conditions, it wouldn't hurt to consider the expertise of the world leaders. and if it's not accuracy that's most important, than there's been nothing to out-perform the kalishnikov when the going gets tough, and it seems pretty stupid to me to land, broken, in between. (which is to say, tom coburn isn't wrong).
but what do i know--i'm just a civilian. i will say that my planned purchase of a demonstration of my civil conscience was just determined beyond any doubt to be an AK. last thing i'd like to hear when standing contested ground would be the impotent clack of a jammed weapon.