AK 47 invented by germans during WW2?

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FussyModoo

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Dec 12, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/12/97
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couple weeks ago there was a big gun show in South Africa. they invited the guy
who invented the famous AK-47 assult rifle to the show. according to the soviet
legend, this guy (i forget his his name, the the rifle itself was named after
him, so his name should start with the letter K) introduced the weapon after
witnessing the inferiority of russian rifle against german submachinegun during
the battle. well..i read a book called Secret Weapons in WW2 not long time ago.
i found some thing amazed me. there was a picture showing the prototype of a
german assult weapon with the striking similarity to the later AK-47. so i
wonder did russians telling the truth or they simply copied the german weaon
after the war.

David Penley

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Dec 16, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/16/97
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FussyModoo <fussy...@aol.com> wrote in article
<676bc3$7...@gazette.bcm.tmc.edu>...


The guy was Mikhail T. Kalashnikov. AK stands for Avtomat Kalashnikov,
or "Automatic Kalashnikov" He was a tanker in World War 2.
Yes, he did base the design of the AK-47 on a German gun from World War
II. I used to have a book that told the name of the German machine gun, but
I have misplaced it. However, if I remember correctly, the German gun was
to be more like a squad automatic weapon that an assault rifle (which the
AK-47 is). Kalashnikov had to modify it to his purpose. So, the idea is not
entirely his, but he didn't just make an exact copy of a German gun and
call it his own.

Paul Kallio

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Dec 16, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/16/97
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The Germans designed an automatic rifle which bore the designations
MP-44 and STG-44.
MP: Maschinen-Pistole (Machine-Pistol)
STG: Sturm-Gewehr (Assault Rifle)
Hitler is traditionally credited with coining the term "assault
rifle". The STG-44 was a finely tooled and complex weapon. After the
war, the Soviet small arms specialist Kalashnikov used the STG-44 as the
basis of his own design for a Russian automatic rifle. The result was
the AK-47.
AK: Avtomat Kalashnikov (Kalashnikov automatic)
The AK-47 retained much of the "look" of the STG-44, including the
trademark "banana clip" but was mass produced and made of lighter weight
stamped sheet metal and had a wooden stock. The AK-47 evolved into
successive generations of AK's including the AKM.


GlennShiv

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Dec 17, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/17/97
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The AK-47 stands for "Automat Kalashnikov", adopted by the Red Army in 1947.
This year marks the 50 year anniversery of the highly successful AK-47, and is
a truly remarkable firearm that has made a significant impart on the history of
the 20th century. It should be noted that during the same time period, the US
Army went through 3 rifles, the M-1, M-14 and M-16, while the Russians
maintained the AK-47. During the 1940's and early 1950's, the Soviets took
extensive measures to maintain the secrecy of the AK-47 and its performance
from the West.

It was designed and perfected by Mikhail Timofeyevich Kalashnikov, who was a
Russian soldier during the war, who developed the idea of the AK-47 while
recovering in an army hospital. His main motivation for developing the AK-47
was that he was upset that Russion troops seemed to always be outgunned by the
Germans. The design is similar in many ways to the MP44 Assult Rifle fielded
by the Germans in 1943. It is accurate to say that the Germans developed and
deployed the first assult rifles, and the AK-47 is a marked improvement on the
concept.

The AK-47 can fire bullets at a rate of 600 per minute. It is so dependable
that it can be dropped in mud and cleaned to firing status almost instantly.
It has been used everywhere from damp rain forests to sandy deserts. It
requires little care and maintance, it requires little instruction, and has
been used both by insurgents and regular armies.

Mikhail Kalashnikov tinkered with 15 prototypes, solving several complex
problems before arriving at the AK-47 basic design. The result was a very
simple, very inexpensive and very effective assult rifle. Since 1947, about
70 million AK-47's have been produced by several communist nations.
Kalashnikov is reported to have received a 4 cent royality, however, his
invention did not make him a wealthy man. He still lives in an apartment in a
small town in Russia.

Best wishes.

Glenn Shiveler

Lee Russell

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Dec 17, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/17/97
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glen...@aol.com (GlennShiv) wrote:
> It should be noted that during the same time period, the US
>Army went through 3 rifles, the M-1, M-14 and M-16, while the Russians
>maintained the AK-47.

That is kind of a simplification, isn't it? During this same period the
Russians used the M1944 carbine, PPS-43 and PPSh-41 SMGs, the AK-47, SKS
and AK-74 as standard infantry small arms.

John M. Atkinson

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Dec 17, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/17/97
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Lee Russell <Pcl...@worldnet.att.net> wrote:

>>Army went through 3 rifles, the M-1, M-14 and M-16, while the Russians
>>maintained the AK-47.

>That is kind of a simplification, isn't it? During this same period the
>Russians used the M1944 carbine, PPS-43 and PPSh-41 SMGs, the AK-47, SKS
>and AK-74 as standard infantry small arms.

An awful lot of the Russian army was carrying Mosin-Nagants during the
time when the US Army was exclusively carrying M-1s. The Soviets also
used the AKM and AKMS during the time frame mentioned by original
poster (introduction of M-1 to present).

John M. Atkinson

"Being intelligent is not a felony. But most societies evaluate
it as at least a misdemeanor."
--L. Long

GlennShiv

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Dec 17, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/17/97
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Lee,

The M1944 is a carbine, similar to an assult rifle but uses small caliber
rounds. The US Army went through the M-1 carbine (different from the M-1
Garand).

The PPS-43 and PPSh-41 were submachine guns, which differ from assult rifles in
that they use pistol rounds and do not fire in a single shot mode. The pistol
rounds fired from these weapons lack accuracy. The US Army went through
several submachine guns during the same time period. Kalashnikov developed
the AK-47 in spite of the fire power provided by their submachine guns.

You are right about the AK-74, though. The armies of the former Soviet
republics are still equipped with the AK-47, and that is the point I was trying
to make, while the M-1 and M-14 were no longer standard issue in the US Army.
It should be noted that the M1917 0.5" caliber heavy machine gun is still used
by the US Army.

Best wishes.

Glenn Shiveler

Ralph Zuljan

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Dec 18, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/18/97
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FussyModoo wrote in message <676bc3$7...@gazette.bcm.tmc.edu>...

Origin of AK-47


>introduced the weapon after
>witnessing the inferiority of russian rifle against german submachinegun during
>the battle. well..i read a book called Secret Weapons in WW2 not long time ago.
>i found some thing amazed me. there was a picture showing the prototype of a
>german assult weapon with the striking similarity to the later AK-47. so i
>wonder did russians telling the truth or they simply copied the german weaon
>after the war.

The origin of the AK-47, without doubt, can be traced to the MP-44 Assault
Rifle (Sturmgewehr).

The MP-44 was the first operational assault rifle and influenced not only
the Soviet army but the US and UK as well. MP-44 has a rather fascinating
history and its introduction caused a debate that still carries on to this
day (in a slightly different form between those who believe in long range,
powerful rifles that are aimed carefully and those who are right).

Combat experience on the Eastern Front (41-42) caused the German Army to
reconsider the basic armament of an infantry soldier. They discovered that
it was rare for a soldier to engage with a rifle at distances greater than
400m. They also found that automatic weapons were more likely to be used and
were more practical (though they only had 9mm machine pistols available
which didn't have satisfactory range). Consequently, they concluded that the
powerful long range rifles in standard use were actually rather pointless.
Instead what was needed was a rifle that had all the attributes of a machine
pistol with somewhat greater range. What they eventually came up with was
the MP-44 (there were a couple of intermediary weapons developed and tested,
one initiated by the Luftwaffe IIRC). It had a shortened version of the
standard round used at the time (which was lighter and therefore more rounds
could be carried) and it had the ability to fire automatic or semi. It had
IIRC a 30-round clip. Overall, it satisfied the conditions set out perfectly
and it was extremely popular on the front. If you think about it, arming
infantry with assault rifes provides them with substantially greater small
arms firepower. On any given length of front, they are able to put up
literally a wall of lead compared to an opponent armed with the period's
standard single shot or semi-automatic rifles and therefore are much for
likely to force their opponent to ground.

As an aside, Hitler is said to have been opposed to the assault gun
philosophy. He felt the lack of long range firing ability, the tendency to
not take aim, etc., were serious detriments. The army in fact hid its
development from Hitler by designating the assault rifle as a machine pistol
(something Hitler liked). When a visiting officer from the Eastern Front
asked Hitler about the MP-44 (in the process revealing what it really was)
and requested more of them, Hitler got rather upset. However, the evidence
from the front spoke for itself and Hitler finally approved it.

I have never encountered any studies of the actual impact of the MP-44 on
the battlefield. It would be interesting to find out how many units were
equipped with it and how they performed relative to units armed with the
regular assortment of infantry rifles/machine pistols. IMHO they must have
done rather well on the Eastern Front because the Soviets did adopt the
concept of the assault rifle many years before the US and UK did (even
though they had all the pertinent data). The US did not produce a real
assault rife until the adoption of the M16! And the half-hearted attempt to
develop one before that (M14) produced what was effectively only a standard
rifle (with an automatic fire capability that wasn't of much use). As an
aside, because of this, during the first years of the Vietnam war, the North
Vietnamese infantry had more firepower than did the US infantry.

Ralph Zuljan
http://www.geocities.com/Pentagon/1084


Endymion

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Dec 19, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/19/97
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Paul Kallio <Grog...@webtv.net> wrote
> The AK-47 retained much of the "look" of the STG-44, including the
> trademark "banana clip" but was mass produced and made of lighter weight
> stamped sheet metal and had a wooden stock. The AK-47 evolved into
> successive generations of AK's including the AKM.

A minor quibble but while it was definitely lighter and cheaper to
manufacture than the StG-44 et al, the AK-47 still had a milled receiver;
the stamped sheet metal receiver appeared with the AKM. AFAIK no general
issue WW2 era rifle of any nation had a stamped receiver; this was used
only for SMG's. Stamped receivers were a recent innovation and were widely
regarded as insufficiently durable or accurate for rifles, which is not
surprising given that most combatants issued what were essentially
overpowered bolt-action target rifles with battle sights added.

--
Bruce Tucker


C.C. Jordan

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Dec 20, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/20/97
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On Wed, 17 Dec 1997 19:17:14 -0500, glen...@aol.com (GlennShiv) wrote:

>
>
>Lee,
>
>The M1944 is a carbine, similar to an assult rifle but uses small caliber
>rounds. The US Army went through the M-1 carbine (different from the M-1
>Garand).

Actually Glenn, the M1944 carbine is a Mosin-Nagant rifle with a 20 inch barrel.
This means it is a bolt action carbine, essentially the M1938 with the addition
of a folding cruciform bayonet. It chambered the same 7.62 mm M1908 cartridge
as the M1891/1930 rifle. I have examples of both in my collection.

>
>The PPS-43 and PPSh-41 were submachine guns, which differ from assult rifles in
>that they use pistol rounds and do not fire in a single shot mode. The pistol
>rounds fired from these weapons lack accuracy.

The accuracy of these cartridges (7.62 mm X 25 mm), in this application, is
quite good. As long as the weapon is used within it's designed range - about 50
meters maximum.

>The US Army went through
>several submachine guns during the same time period. Kalashnikov developed
>the AK-47 in spite of the fire power provided by their submachine guns.

The Kalashnikov was developed to meet different needs than those the
subguns filled. It essentially filled the role of 'battle rifle' and subgun. The

AK-47 has a useful range that is far greater than the PPSh-41 (and decendents).
It provides for high volumes of fire as well. BTW, the early AK's have milled
recievers, I believe the stamped reciever was introduced as the AKM. Some
other gentleman in another post, in this thread, misunderstood this. Excuse
my inserting the correction here.

>
>You are right about the AK-74, though. The armies of the former Soviet
>republics are still equipped with the AK-47, and that is the point I was trying
>to make, while the M-1 and M-14 were no longer standard issue in the US Army.
>It should be noted that the M1917 0.5" caliber heavy machine gun is still used
>by the US Army.
>
>Best wishes.
>
>Glenn Shiveler


The M1917 was chambered in .30 caliber (M1906 ball) and was water cooled.
The .50 caliber Heavy Machine Gun was originally designated the M1921.
It has evolved into the the current M2HB. Recently I had the opportunity to
test this weapon at the Naval Surface Weapons Center in Crane Indiana.
I had accelerometers mounted on the reciever to collect R&D data.

What follows is a brief history of the MP-44. This is reposted from an earlier
thread. I am posting it again as there seems to be some confusion about
this revolutionary weapon, as expressed in this thread.


The MP-44 Sturmgewehr:

The weapon was designed to meet the requirements of an army specification
for a 'Sturmgewehr' or an 'assault rifle'. The requirement was issued around
1940. The weapon which finally emerged was designed by Louis Schmeisser.
It uses a tipping bolt operated by a gas system with a piston attached to the
bolt carrier. Originally designated the MKb 42(H), about 8,000 were issued for
field testing in late 1942 through early 1943. After it was determined that the
rifle was a success, it went into full production as the MP43. At some later
date the designation was changed to MP44. Today, no one can recall why.

The rifle fired the 7.92mm X 33mm Kurz (short) cartridge. The ballistics of the
round are virtually the same as the Soviet M43 7.63mm X 39mm. To the layman,
this is about the same as the venerable .30-30 cartridge. It is certain that the
Soviets used both the German cartridge and the MP44 as a basis for the AK-47.
The AK uses a rotating bolt, unlike the MP44. They both have the unusual
feature of having the gas piston permanently afixed to the bolt carrier.

The Soviet M43 cartridge made its debut in the Siminov SKS45 carbine.
The SKS was quickly surplanted by the Kalashnikov within two years.


Best regards and happy holidays to all !
C.C. Jordan

"Passion and prejudice govern the world; only
under the name of reason".
John Wesley

http://www.Aerodyne-controls.com


John M. Atkinson

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Dec 20, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/20/97
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glen...@aol.com (GlennShiv) wrote:

>It should be noted that the M1917 0.5" caliber heavy machine gun is still used
>by the US Army.

Minor correction: The current M-designator for the Ma Deuce is the M2
(plus some letter, IIRC).

Martyn Westwood

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Dec 20, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/20/97
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On Fri, 12 Dec 1997 11:13:33 -0500, fussy...@aol.com (FussyModoo)
wrote:

>
>
>couple weeks ago there was a big gun show in South Africa. they invited the guy
>who invented the famous AK-47 assult rifle to the show. according to the soviet
>legend, this guy (i forget his his name, the the rifle itself was named after
>him, so his name should start with the letter K) introduced the weapon after

Kalashnikov!

>witnessing the inferiority of russian rifle against german submachinegun during
>the battle. well..i read a book called Secret Weapons in WW2 not long time ago.
>i found some thing amazed me. there was a picture showing the prototype of a
>german assult weapon with the striking similarity to the later AK-47. so i
>wonder did russians telling the truth or they simply copied the german weaon
>after the war.
>
>

The weapon you're referring to is the Sturmgewehr. The Germans
introduced it in late 1944. There's no question that the Soviets were
impressed by the combination of this modern assault rifle and the
Panzerfaust. Both were further developed by the Soviets. As far as I
know only Waffen-SS units were issued the weapon on production
grounds.

Martyn Westwood


Per Andersson

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Dec 22, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/22/97
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"David Penley" <depe...@mounet.com> wrote:


> Yes, he did base the design of the AK-47 on a German gun from World War
>II. I used to have a book that told the name of the German machine gun, but
>I have misplaced it.

The German gun was the Mp43/StG44 (name chaged for no apperant
reason), the first true assault rifle manufactured.

> However, if I remember correctly, the German gun was
>to be more like a squad automatic weapon that an assault rifle (which the
>AK-47 is).

Here, you are wrong. The Germans intended (and to a certain degree
actualy managed) to equip their Volksgrenadier infantry exclusively
with StG44s rather than rifles and SMGs.


Per Andersson

Dirk Lorek

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Dec 22, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/22/97
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pan...@ts.umu.se (Per Andersson) wrote:


> The German gun was the Mp43/StG44 (name chaged for no apperant
> reason), the first true assault rifle manufactured.

There were some minor differences (don't ask me which) between the
MP 43 and the MP 44 which caused the change in designation.


I>irk
______________________________________________________________________
What am I, Life? A thing of watery salt, held in cohesion by unresting
cells,which work they know not why, which never halt, myself unwitting
where their Master dwells. - John Masefield -


Hauptmann

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Dec 22, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/22/97
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> The German gun was the Mp43/StG44 (name chaged for no apperant
> reason), the first true assault rifle manufactured.

The reason it was changed was because of it's caliber, the 7.9 Kurtz round
not being a true pistol round, it was larger than a pistol cartridge but
smaller than a rifle round, StG stand for Sturmgewehr, (storm gun).

a...@dustdevil.com

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Dec 22, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/22/97
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On Thu, 18 Dec 1997 13:08:59 -0500, "Ralph Zuljan"
<zul...@worldchat.com> wrote:
e Soviet army but the US and UK as well. MP-44 has a rather
fascinating

its introduction caused a debate that still carries on to this
>day (in a slightly different form between those who believe in long range,
>powerful rifles that are aimed carefully and those who are right).

A good marksman with a M1 Garand is better off in all cases except
thick forest or jungle. Then I want the AK 47. In no case would I
choose M16.>


>Combat experience on the Eastern Front (41-42) caused the German Army to
>reconsider the basic armament of an infantry soldier. They discovered that
>it was rare for a soldier to engage with a rifle at distances greater than
>400m. They also found that automatic weapons were more likely to be used and
>were more practical (though they only had 9mm machine pistols available
>which didn't have satisfactory range). Consequently, they concluded that the
>powerful long range rifles in standard use were actually rather pointless.

Pointless only because in the world today good marksmen are hard to
find. Better to give them all firehoses.>

>Ralph Zuljan
>http://www.geocities.com/Pentagon/1084
>
You are surely also aware that 15% of the front line soldiers account
for 95% of enemy casualties, so those guys deserved a true marksman's
weapon. Give the rest of them firehoses if you want, they're only
there to draw fire anyway.
Also Germans equipped only 2 MP44s per squad, otherwise there wouldn't
have been enough men to carry all the ammo.


Tarjei T. Jensen

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Dec 22, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/22/97
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Dirk Lorek wrote:


>
> pan...@ts.umu.se (Per Andersson) wrote:
>
>> The German gun was the Mp43/StG44 (name chaged for no apperant
>> reason), the first true assault rifle manufactured.
>

> There were some minor differences (don't ask me which) between the
> MP 43 and the MP 44 which caused the change in designation.
>

What I have read somewhere (I don't remember where):

I think the designation was MP-43 to keep Hitler from discovering it -
the Germans had several billions 7.92mm rounds around and thought they
needed no new rounds. However the field troops liked it so well that
they were demanding more so loud that Hitler noticed. He had to agree to
produce it and it was given a new designation.


Greetings,


--
// Tarjei T. Jensen
// tar...@online.no || voice +47 51 62 85 58
// Support you local rescue centre: GET LOST!


John Ongtooguk

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Dec 22, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/22/97
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Ralph Zuljan (zul...@worldchat.com) wrote:

: ... MP-44 has a rather fascinating
: history and its introduction caused a debate that still carries on to this


: day (in a slightly different form between those who believe in long range,
: powerful rifles that are aimed carefully and those who are right).

The debate between long range aimed fire, which is easier to do
with the more powerful rounds, and the 'pray and spray' technique
is to some degree, perhaps to a large degree determined by how well
trained the troops are. The smaller, professional British army
at the start of WWI drilled their troops extensively on delivering
aimed, rapid fire from their bolt action Enfield rifles, and
in some cases German troops thought that they were facing massed
machine guns at long range. If one visits a 'highpower rifle' match
where bolt action target rifles or military service rifles are
used, in rapid and slow fire at ranges from 200 to 600 yards, the
bolt action rifles hold the edge. A US Marine sniper using a
bolt action rifle pinned down a company of enemy troops while
inflicting a number of casualties at long range, until reinforcements
could relieve him and his spotter. The company of enemy troops
were all equipped with AK-47s.

The US Marines made fun of the M1 Garand as their beloved M1903
Springfields (which were such close copies of the M98 Mauser
that the US had to pay royalties to Mauser) had served them well,
but they eventually switched when it was demonstrated that the
M1 Garand not only offered more firepower than the Springfield
but it was more accurate as well. The Garand was an excellent
long range weapon due to it's 24in barrel, 30.06 round, and good
design, but the 8 round clip couldn't be topped off between
fire fights and the weapon was a bit bulky. Someone at the
Frankford (?) arsenal noticed that there was some air space
in 30.06 round when loaded, so they shortened the case and
the 7.62 NATO round was eventually developed. The Springfield
armory developed the M14 to go with the round, and although
it didn't initially do as well at long range as the M1 Garand
the fixes resulted in a rifle so accurate that the paper targets
had to be made more difficult. The M14 is still the preferred
'service rifle' on the rifle range, and it's robust design still
make it an attractive weapon for some missions and special troops.

The full auto M16 had teething problems which were eventually
straightened out and while much more of the smaller caliber ammo
could be carried it still didn't perform as well at longer ranges
as desired, regardless of what the 'pray and spray' advocates
wanted. The M16A2 has three round burst instead of full auto
capability, and uses a lower velocity, heavier round for better
long range performance. The US Marines still qualify with the
weapon out to 500 yards and it's being used for target shooting
out to 600 yards by the military teams. Studies by the Marines
have shown that the M16A2 is the most accurate service rifle
that they have issued, heavily modified 'match M14s' aside.
Long range aimed fire has never gone out of style among some
troops :^)

John Ongtooguk (jo...@vcd.hp.com)

Osmo Ronkanen

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Dec 23, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/23/97
to

In article <67evp3$m...@gazette.bcm.tmc.edu>,

GlennShiv <glen...@aol.com> wrote:
>
>The PPS-43 and PPSh-41 were submachine guns, which differ from assult rifles in
>that they use pistol rounds and do not fire in a single shot mode.

Actually most SMGs can fire single shots as well as automatic fire.
Most notable exceptions are MP-38/40 and PPS-43.

Osmo


Phillip McGregor

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Dec 23, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/23/97
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On 22 Dec 1997 16:53:26 GMT, DiL...@pobox.com (Dirk Lorek) wrote:

>There were some minor differences (don't ask me which) between the
>MP 43 and the MP 44 which caused the change in designation.

I believe (from memory) that the MP-44 was more simplified for mass production
*and* that it corrected some faults in the original MP-43 that made it somewhat
prone to jamming.

Phil
---------------------------------------------
Phillip McGregor | asp...@curie.dialix.oz.au
Co-designer, Space Opera (FGU)
Author, Rigger Black Book (FASA)
Designer, Standard Role Playing (PGD)


Ralph Zuljan

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Dec 24, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/24/97
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John Ongtooguk wrote in message <67pcsk$1...@gazette.bcm.tmc.edu>...


>Ralph Zuljan (zul...@worldchat.com) wrote:
>: ... MP-44 has a rather fascinating
>: history and its introduction caused a debate that still carries on to
>: this
>: day (in a slightly different form between those who believe in long
>: range,
>: powerful rifles that are aimed carefully and those who are right).
>
> The debate between long range aimed fire, which is easier to do
> with the more powerful rounds, and the 'pray and spray' technique
> is to some degree, perhaps to a large degree determined by how well
> trained the troops are.

Of course, I disagree. Training in the sense being put forward here
essentially produces troops that are all snipers. This is not necessarily
bad but in terms of the combat situations these troops are likely to
encounter, it is not a required skill. IIRC the German analysis concluded
that infantry engagements typically took place under 400m. Placing a
training emphasis on engagments taking place at longer ranges would
therefore be inappropriate because the troops will be prepared for a fight
that is not likely to take place.

> The smaller, professional British army
> at the start of WWI drilled their troops extensively on delivering
> aimed, rapid fire from their bolt action Enfield rifles, and
> in some cases German troops thought that they were facing massed
> machine guns at long range.

These are rare cases indeed. Perhaps it would be better to consider the fact
that most of WWI on the western front most of the infantry, most of the
time, were engaged at distances under 200m (across no man's land). Can you
imagine the impact of an army equipped with the MP44 under these
circumstances?

> A US Marine sniper using a
> bolt action rifle pinned down a company of enemy troops while
> inflicting a number of casualties at long range, until reinforcements
> could relieve him and his spotter. The company of enemy troops
> were all equipped with AK-47s.

While this is an excellent example of what a lone snipper can do, it does
not reflect typical combat engagements. The snipper has a specialized role
in combat and when it is down well it can have an impact on the local
situation.

> armory developed the M14 to go with the round, and although
> it didn't initially do as well at long range as the M1 Garand
> the fixes resulted in a rifle so accurate that the paper targets
> had to be made more difficult. The M14 is still the preferred
> 'service rifle' on the rifle range, and it's robust design still
> make it an attractive weapon for some missions and special troops.


The key point to keep in mind here is that a rifle range is not quite the
same as a combat engagement and an MP44 (or its Soviet copy the AK47)
outperformed weapons like the M1 or M14 on the battlefield. IIRC a version
of the M14 is still in use as a snipper rifle (which is a specialized skill
requiring a specialized rifle).

> Long range aimed fire has never gone out of style among some
> troops

Particularly snippers and rifle range enthusiasts. BTW target shooting is a
very skilled activity much like drill. Both IMHO have a place in training
but neither reflects (or prepares the infantry for) a combat environment in
which assault rifles are in use.

Ralph Zuljan
http://www.geocities.com/Pentagon/1084


Ralph Zuljan

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Dec 24, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/24/97
to

a...@dustdevil.com wrote in message <67p8js$9...@gazette.bcm.tmc.edu>...


>
>
>On Thu, 18 Dec 1997 13:08:59 -0500, "Ralph Zuljan"
><zul...@worldchat.com> wrote:

>>[MP44] introduction caused a debate that still carries on to this


>>day (in a slightly different form between those who believe in long range,
>>powerful rifles that are aimed carefully and those who are right).

>A good marksman with a M1 Garand is better off in all cases except


>thick forest or jungle. Then I want the AK 47. In no case would I
>choose M16.

That is your opinion. However, IIRC the German study found that typical
infantry engagements happened at less than 400m. Ordinary terrain features
were among the reasons for this. At such short ranges, the importance of the
sheer quantity of fire produced by the infantry supercedes the accuracy and
range of the infantry.

>>Consequently, they concluded that the
>>powerful long range rifles in standard use were actually rather pointless.
>
>Pointless only because in the world today good marksmen are hard to
>find. Better to give them all firehoses.

Pointless because infantry did not engage in combat at ranges where
marksmanship mattered. I think the idea of the assault rife (of which the
MP44 was the first) is that given the typical battlefield, the probability
of hitting (or grounding) the enemy is greater with a lot of bullets fired
relatively inaccurately than a few bullets fired accurately.

>You are surely also aware that 15% of the front line soldiers account
>for 95% of enemy casualties, so those guys deserved a true marksman's
>weapon.

IIRC an analysis of combat behavior (by the US Army?) showed that the
willingness of soldiers to even fire their weapon decreased proportionately
with the distance from a machinegun. Part of the rationale for an assault
rifle is that it gave everybody a machinegun.

>Give the rest of them firehoses if you want, they're only
>there to draw fire anyway.

The rest of them would be better if they actually engaged the enemy. An
assault rifle gives them somewhat higher confidence to do so.

>Also Germans equipped only 2 MP44s per squad, otherwise there wouldn't
>have been enough men to carry all the ammo.
>

IIRC the intention was to reequip the infantry with the MP44 (as a
replacement for submachineguns and bolt/semi rifles). Since the rounds were
smaller (well shorter) than the standard German rifle round, many more could
be carried. I have seen pictures of German infantry equipped with the MP44
carrying 3 additional clips in a standard carrier. IMHO the "ideal" German
soldier in 44-45 would therefore be carrying into combat 120 rounds. That's
a lot of "punch" for a period infantryman. Of course, the Germans never got
close to that ideal.

BTW I do not know whether the Germans encountered ammo supply problems
because of the natural tendency to fire auto when in doubt. My guess is that
they trained the troops to use short bursts to conserve the ammo.

Ralph Zuljan
http://www.geocities.com/Pentagon/1084


Bruce Kohrn

unread,
Dec 24, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/24/97
to


> the MP-44 (there were a couple of intermediary weapons developed and tested,
> one initiated by the Luftwaffe IIRC).

Quote severely snipped of Ralph Zuljan

1)Are you referring to the FG 42? This used the regular 7.92mm round.
2)Wasn't the Spanish CETME a direct descendent of the MP44?

Bruce Kohrn
BKo...@home.com


C.C. Jordan

unread,
Dec 25, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/25/97
to

On 25 Dec 1997 03:50:39 GMT, Bruce Kohrn <bko...@home.com> wrote:

>Quote clipped:


>> It provides for high volumes of fire as well. BTW, the early AK's have milled
>> recievers, I believe the stamped reciever was introduced as the AKM. Some
>

>> C.C. Jordan
>
>A small point, but the 1945 "People's Rifle" Volksturm Gewehr is
>reported to have had a stamped receiver.
>
>Bruce Kohrn
>BKo...@home.com
>

Actually, stamped recievers were introduced many years earlier. However, my
point was in reference to when the stamped reciever was introduced on the
Kalashnikov. The Soviets switched to stampings to reduce costs and because
stampings are more in line with the technology of less developed client nations.
Original AK-47 rifles had recievers milled from solid steel.

The MP40 made extensive use of stampings. The StG44 (MP44) used a stamped
reciever as well. The Volksturm VG1-5, which used StG44 magazines, did indeed
employ stampings in the reciever.

Happy Holidays

C.C. Jordan

"Passion and prejudice govern the world; only
under the name of reason".
John Wesley

http://www.Aerodyne-controls.com
Aerodyne Controls Corporation: A division of Circle Seal Controls.


Osmo Ronkanen

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Dec 25, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/25/97
to

In article <67h101$23b6$1...@nntp6.u.washington.edu>,

C.C. Jordan <C.C.J...@worldnet.att.net> wrote:
>
>The accuracy of these cartridges (7.62 mm X 25 mm), in this application, is
>quite good. As long as the weapon is used within it's designed range - about 50
>meters maximum.

Was this a typo and you meant 150 meters? The sights for PPSh 41 were
for 100 and 200 meters (50-500 meters on early versions). Why not put
such sights if the weapon is designed only for ranges up to 50 meters?
50 meters may be true for fully automatic junk like MP-40 but for
selective fire weapons things are not that bad.

Osmo

C.C. Jordan

unread,
Dec 25, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/25/97
to


On Wed, 24 Dec 1997 01:46:49 -0500, Bruce Kohrn <bko...@home.com> wrote:


>2)Wasn't the Spanish CETME a direct descendent of the MP44?


Indirectly. The CETME was developed from the StG45 which never moved
beyond the prototype stage. The H&K G3 was a development of the CETME.
The design went full circle back to Germany.

Happy Holidays,

WirbelW

unread,
Dec 26, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/26/97
to

This thread seems to have made it clear that the AK-47 concept originated with
the Stg 44, but did not the Soviets also copy the concept for the RPG
rocket-propelled grenade launcher from the Panzerfaust?

Nick


C.C. Jordan

unread,
Dec 26, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/26/97
to

Hello Osmo.

No, that wasn't a typo. My own experience with subguns leads me to conclude that
their useful range is limited to about 50 meters. Much beyond that and the
energy loss combined with the general lack of accuracy substantially reduces
the weapons lethality.

As to the sights. My Chinese type 56 Kalashnikov has sights graduated to 800
meters. This is about double the useful range of the rifle. Sure, it will shoot
out that far, but hitting what you aim for is unlikely at best. A No.I Mk III
has sights graduated to 2000 yards. Anyone care to guess what the odds are
that a Tommy could even see an enemy soldier at better than a mile, much
less hit him ? The point I'm working towards is this: The sights mounted on a
weapon may not accurately reflect the "useful range" of the cartridge. They
may simply reflect the maximum range.

Best regards and happy holidays,

John Ongtooguk

unread,
Dec 27, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/27/97
to

Ralph Zuljan wrote:

> John Ongtooguk wrote in message <67pcsk$1...@gazette.bcm.tmc.edu>...
>
>> The smaller, professional British army
>> at the start of WWI drilled their troops extensively on delivering
>> aimed, rapid fire from their bolt action Enfield rifles, and
>> in some cases German troops thought that they were facing massed
>> machine guns at long range.

> These are rare cases indeed. Perhaps it would be better to consider
> the fact that most of WWI on the western front most of the infantry,
> most of the time, were engaged at distances under 200m (across no
> imagine the impact of an army equipped with the MP44 under these
> man's land). Can you circumstances?

Why would well trained troops need short range full auto capability
when their long range aimed fire was evidently as effective as
massed machine guns, and was mistaken for such ? The only difference
would be the need for using much more ammo at a shorter range.

>> Long range aimed fire has never gone out of style among some
>> troops

> Particularly snippers and rifle range enthusiasts. BTW target shooting
> is a very skilled activity much like drill. Both IMHO have a place in
> training but neither reflects (or prepares the infantry for) a combat
> environment in which assault rifles are in use.

The US Marines and other 'well trained troops' have done just
fine in combat, in spite of the amount of time that the Marines
spend on the drill field and on the rifle range. Again it's
merely a matter of training.

John Ongtooguk (jo...@vcd.hp.com)


Osmo Ronkanen

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Dec 28, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/28/97
to


In article <6824sj$284c$1...@nntp6.u.washington.edu>,


John Ongtooguk <jo...@vcd.hp.com> wrote:
>
> Why would well trained troops need short range full auto capability
> when their long range aimed fire was evidently as effective as
> massed machine guns, and was mistaken for such ? The only difference
> would be the need for using much more ammo at a shorter range.

Why? Maybe because two men with assault rifles have same fire power as a
squad of men with bold-action rifles.There is no question about the fact
that assault rifles greatly increase the fire power of infantry.

Osmo


Ralph Zuljan

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Dec 29, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/29/97
to

John Ongtooguk wrote in message <6824sj$284c$1...@nntp6.u.washington.edu>...


>Ralph Zuljan wrote:
>> John Ongtooguk wrote in message <67pcsk$1...@gazette.bcm.tmc.edu>...


<snipped example from WWI and a mangled copy of my response>

> Why would well trained troops need short range full auto capability
> when their long range aimed fire was evidently as effective as
> massed machine guns, and was mistaken for such ?

Because it was not as effective. You are taking an anecdote from the early
days of WWI and generalizing in a way that is obviously the wrong lesson to
learn (even for WWI). What was the average range at which infantry engaged
in combat during WWI? A lot less than 400m. What is more effective? A single
machine gunner or a squad armed with bolt action rifles? The death toll in
WWI speaks for itself: machine gunner--a lot of kills, rifle soldier--not
many.

The MP44 changed the rules of infantry combat. It made the anecdote of a
squad firing with the effect of massed machine guns a reality. (I suspect
this tremendously improved soldier performance since, IIRC, USAr concluded
that willingness of infantrymen to engage in combat varies with the distance
from a machine gunner.) To boot, it gave each soldier more ammo for the same
weight (because of the smaller rounds). All that was sacrificed to do that
was a long range capbility that had no validity in infantry combat anyway
(that much the German studies demonstrated, IIRC).

> The only difference
> would be the need for using much more ammo at a shorter range.

Only somebody trapped in the rather silly view that the logistical tail
should wag the tactical dog would even suggest such a statement (although it
would seem you are not alone on in the ng). If improved combat performance
requires more ammo, then more ammo is required. Let the logistics people
figure it out. (Hey, build another munitions factory.)

>> ...BTW target shooting


>> is a very skilled activity much like drill. Both IMHO have a place in
>> training but neither reflects (or prepares the infantry for) a combat
>> environment in which assault rifles are in use.
>
> The US Marines and other 'well trained troops' have done just
> fine in combat, in spite of the amount of time that the Marines
> spend on the drill field and on the rifle range. Again it's
> merely a matter of training.

What does drill accomplish? Unit cohesion, obedience to authority, espirit
de corps, etc. Essentially, drill instills some of the basic requirements of
soldiering as a profession without being obvious about it so it works very
well. Maybe two hundred years ago drill actually provided soldiers with
combat specific training but not anymore.

What does the rifle range teach a soldier? Familiarity with the weapon. In
peace more so than war, there aren't a lot of good reasons to be firing a
military rifle so the range provides an excuse. Better yet, it is a strictly
controlled environment in which definite objectives can be set (e.g., target
practice).

Does either of these training activities have anything to do with combat?
Yes and no. The habits acquired through drill and the range provide a solid
foundation for a professional soldier to engage in combat, so training makes
better soldiers who are likely to perform better in combat. (ASIDE: the
early Waffen SS drilled a lot and they still proved to be poor quality
soldiers because they had no tactical sense so it isn't always true that
drill improves soldiering.) It does not, however, introduce soldiers to
combat. The manner in which they a likely to use a rife is not same as on
the range. (Paper targets aren't people and they don't fire back.)

Furthermore, the real issue is not whether a bolt or semi rifle (e.g., M1)
can perform as well as an assault rifle like the MP44 (given enough training
for the troops). If that were the case, you would lose the argument right
away since it implies that equipping with an assault rifle increases
training efficiency and a soldier's weapons proficiency.

This, indeed, is probably the most interesting point to consider. Did the
MP44 cause a significant (noticeable) change in the combat performance of
German infantry? Would its use help to explain the rather definite
qualitative advantage the German units had in combat against the Allies
(even later in the war when Allied training and experience were comparable
and sometimes better).

P.S. an interesting read on the history of the M16, the US version of the
MP44 (and I won't get into the origin of the M60 --> MG42), consider Fallows
"National Defense".

Ralph Zuljan
http://www.geocities.com/Pentagon/1084

Endymion

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Dec 30, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/30/97
to

Ralph Zuljan <zul...@worldchat.com> wrote

> The MP44 changed the rules of infantry combat. It made the anecdote of a
> squad firing with the effect of massed machine guns a reality.

Not at all, but it gave riflemen the firepwoer of the SMG and greater
capability to do what riflemen do best: close assault and support and
close-in defense of MGs. At any range above 1-200 meters a squad or even a
platoon of rifles will be less effective than a good MG. You can make the
rifle cartridge as powerful and accurate as you like and it won't do any
good if the firer can't see or hit a target at long range.

The Germans in WW2 realized that the rifle, SMG, and MG have different, but
complimentary roles; engaging targets at long range is a job for the MG,
since under combat conditions it is virtually impossible for a rifleman to
get a sight picture on, let alone hit, anything at 500 meters. The assault
rifle keeps the medium range performance of the full-power rifle but adds
the short-range firepower of an SMG in the same package.

> (I suspect
> this tremendously improved soldier performance since, IIRC, USAr
concluded
> that willingness of infantrymen to engage in combat varies with the
distance
> from a machine gunner.)

This conclusion is highly controversial to this day. And in any case one
has to wonder if a terrified soldier aimlessly spraying lead up in the air
is any more effective than one cowering in a hole with a bolt-action. The
ones with the nerve to aim and fire are the only ones doing any good.

> To boot, it gave each soldier more ammo for the same
> weight (because of the smaller rounds). All that was sacrificed to do
that
> was a long range capbility that had no validity in infantry combat anyway

Agreed. Even the mediocre-velocity 7.62x39 (IIRC very similar to the MP44's
7.92mm Kurtz) can hit and seriously wound a man as far away as anyone is
likely to do with a .30-06 under combat conditions.

> > The only difference
> > would be the need for using much more ammo at a shorter range.
> Only somebody trapped in the rather silly view that the logistical tail
> should wag the tactical dog would even suggest such a statement (although
it
> would seem you are not alone on in the ng). If improved combat
performance
> requires more ammo, then more ammo is required. Let the logistics people
> figure it out. (Hey, build another munitions factory.)

Be careful of letting metaphors tell you how to run a war. Saying "let the
logistics people figure it out" doomed the Germans three times I can easily
think of (Schlieffen plan, Barbarossa, North Africa) not to mention the
Axis disaster in WW2 as a whole. Logistical factors are a reality of
war-making, like it or not, and *must* be taken into account when
evaluating a weapon. Performance may justify the added burden, or it may
not - this is what we pay military professionals to evaluate.

But in this case, IMHO, the added burden from assault rifles is not that
great and is more than justified by the added capability. The solution to
any logistical problems is not a more primitive rifle, it's training your
soldiers in proper fire discipline.

> What does drill accomplish?

> What does the rifle range teach a soldier?

Be careful not to confuse these two. I agree with much of what you say the
rifle range teaches but it also has practical uses which drill does not.

> Does either of these training activities have anything to do with combat?
> Yes and no.

(snip)


> The manner in which they a likely to use a rife is not same as on
> the range. (Paper targets aren't people and they don't fire back.)

So are you saying ability to hit what you're aiming for isn't important?
Sure, the rifle range is easier than shooting at a camoflaged or moving
target that's shooting back, but in all training you start with the
fundamentals and simple conditions and master them and *then* you can try
repetition under more difficult conditions. But if you can't hit a paper
target at a known range you will never hit a real target in combat.

IMHO this lack of regard for marksmanship is a dangerous idea that has at
times (esp. Vietnam) hampered the effectiveness of US infantry (but never
Marines!) Keep in mind that for any task riflemen are to accomplish it is
necessary to inflict casualties on the enemy. Noise, smoke, and flash do
very little to break the enemy's morale or cohesion; casualties, OTOH, do
so rapidly. And to cause casualties against infantry a rifleman must hit
what he is aiming for. At 1-200 meters, which is well within effective
rifle range and a quite common range in WW2 combat, "spray and pray" just
doesn't work; without aiming you can easily put hundreds of rounds
downrange and never hit a man-sized target.

> This, indeed, is probably the most interesting point to consider. Did the
> MP44 cause a significant (noticeable) change in the combat performance of
> German infantry?

Apparently it handily impressed the Soviets who were the main
"beneficiaries" of its use.

> Would its use help to explain the rather definite
> qualitative advantage the German units had in combat against the Allies
> (even later in the war when Allied training and experience were
comparable
> and sometimes better).

The Germans kept this advantage even where MP 44's were not in use; there
were very few if any in Normandy yet German infantry had a major tactical
advantage over the experienced troops of the Big Red One: an excellent
squad MG and proper doctrine for its use. Just about every account I've
read by US troops emphasizes the enormous advantage this gave the Germans.
Trying to use a rifle - an assault rifle or a high-powered semiauto - in
place of an MG is just not smart.

--
Bruce Tucker

David E. Sandford

unread,
Dec 31, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/31/97
to

Endymion wrote in message <68bcri$jpq$1...@nntp6.u.washington.edu>...
>Ralph Zuljan <zul...@worldchat.com> wrote
>

>
>Agreed. Even the mediocre-velocity 7.62x39 (IIRC very similar to the
MP44's
>7.92mm Kurtz) can hit and seriously wound a man as far away as anyone
is
>likely to do with a .30-06 under combat conditions.
>

>Bruce Tucker
>
>
First question what range are you referring to?

Anything under approximately 200 m the likelihood of hitting someone
with a 7.62x39 would be more or less equivalent, assuming a good
marksman. Beyond that the edge definitely goes to the round with the
flattest trajectory. This makes range estimation much less critical
since. The 7.62x39 with its relatively low muzzle velocity starts
falling like a stone much beyond 200 meters, whereas the 30-06 is
still very effective out to 400-600 meters, and beyond in the hands of
a truly skilled marksman.

It becomes increasingly more critical to estimate range accurately as
the "target" gets further away. Given equal skill the guy with the
30-06 has a greater chance of killing or wounding an enemy soldier, as
the range increases.

The whole argument hinges on what the relative distances you are
dealing with. In many cases the bolt action rifle chambered in 30-06,
or equivalent, would not be the preferred weapon. It's all relative
and premised upon some basic assumptions of the distance to target.


Ralph Zuljan

unread,
Jan 1, 1998, 3:00:00 AM1/1/98
to

Endymion wrote in message <68bcri$jpq$1...@nntp6.u.washington.edu>...

>Ralph Zuljan <zul...@worldchat.com> wrote
>
>> The MP44 changed the rules of infantry combat. It made the anecdote of a
>> squad firing with the effect of massed machine guns a reality.
>
>Not at all, but it gave riflemen the firepwoer of the SMG and greater
>capability to do what riflemen do best: close assault and support and
>close-in defense of MGs. At any range above 1-200 meters a squad or even a
>platoon of rifles will be less effective than a good MG. You can make the
>rifle cartridge as powerful and accurate as you like and it won't do any
>good if the firer can't see or hit a target at long range.


I somewhat agree. The rules of infantry combat were certainly not changed.
My original comment referred back to the previous post about a WWI story and
should only be considered in that context. However, the introduction of the
MP44 did alter the dynamics of infantry combat since as you point out it
combined the (useful) range and (most of the) accuracy of a rifle with the
raw firepower of the SMG. For general purpose infantry, this was a
significant innovation that was eventually adopted by everyone.

>
>The Germans in WW2 realized that the rifle, SMG, and MG have different, but
>complimentary roles; engaging targets at long range is a job for the MG,
>since under combat conditions it is virtually impossible for a rifleman to
>get a sight picture on, let alone hit, anything at 500 meters

(more snipped)

I agree. Describing the role of the MG provides a useful context for this
thread. It also adds emphasis to the original point that the MP44 sacrificed
range that was not necessary under combat conditions for the purposes of a
rifle.

>> (I suspect this tremendously improved soldier performance since, IIRC,
>> USAr concluded that willingness of infantrymen to engage in combat
>> varies with the distance from a machine gunner.)
>
>This conclusion is highly controversial to this day.

Granted. However, does anyone know where to find the original data and the
study that produced this conclusion?

>And in any case one
>has to wonder if a terrified soldier aimlessly spraying lead up in the air
>is any more effective than one cowering in a hole with a bolt-action. The
>ones with the nerve to aim and fire are the only ones doing any good.

You have a point here. However, let me offer this position for contrast. If
an assault rifle gets that terrified soldier to fire in the direction of the
enemy, wouldn't that have some positive combat value? To some extent the
probability of causing enemy casualties will be determined by the number of
rounds directed towards them and in so far as your terrified soldiers are
directing rounds towards the enemy they are contributing to the battle. (Of
course, firing with some amount of aim will improve those casualties.)

>> > The only difference
>> > would be the need for using much more ammo at a shorter range.
>> Only somebody trapped in the rather silly view that the logistical tail
>> should wag the tactical dog would even suggest such a statement
>> (although it would seem you are not alone on in the ng).
>> If improved combat performance
>> requires more ammo, then more ammo is required. Let the logistics people
>> figure it out. (Hey, build another munitions factory.)
>
>Be careful of letting metaphors tell you how to run a war.

Granted. My stated position (along with the metaphor) is a bit extreme.
However, to some extent I would argue for its validity. Anyone who would
argue in defence of the rifle over the assault rifle (or the horse over the
tank) on the basis of the increased logistical burden is wrong and history
shows that. IMHO the poster I replied to implied exactly such a position.

To some extent, logistical capabilities limit the tactical and strategic
options available to a particular state. (EGs: Germany was unprepared for an
invasion of UK in WWII, and could not attack the US directly while the US
demonstrated the ability to conduct a modern war across an ocean.) These are
limits that are usually understood beforehand, though there may be errors in
that understanding or reality may impose unforeseen circumstances. (It
speaks volumes about intentions that the Germans had a large land army, a
tactical air force and a small navy.) But logistical capabilities do not win
battles or wars.

Furthermore, I would differentiate military-industrial potential (which can
crudely be determined from by GDP) from logistical capabilities. Even
military-industrial potential does not determine who wins battles or wars
(strategy and tactics do). But there is a strong historical relationship
between that potential and the probability of victory in a long war.

>Saying "let the
>logistics people figure it out" doomed the Germans three times I can easily
>think of (Schlieffen plan, Barbarossa, North Africa) not to mention the
>Axis disaster in WW2 as a whole.

I would disagree somewhat. IMHO, the Schlieffen plan (a pre- and WWI German
plan for the defeat of France) would not be a solid case. It is hardly the
case that the German army was logistically unprepared to execute the plan.
Rather, the speed of the advance proved inadequate and the defensive effect
of the machinegun was not anticipated. Furthermore, IIRC all the
participants ran out of artillery ammo early on because no one expected to
use as much as they did (for as long as they did). And how did they resolve
this logistical problem? They geared up to produce more and ultimately
supplied the troops with more ammo. I don't recall anyone saying that they
should forget about artillery because it needed too much ammo to get the
desired effect.

The Barbarossa campaign is a far stronger case. However, even here there is
reason to doubt that lack of logistical preparation was a decisive factor.
Perhaps this issue deserves a thread of its own.

As for N. Africa, again a case can be made here. It was very difficult to
supply German troops there and huge quantities of supplies were lost to
Allied interdiction. But then, the commitment, until fairly late, was not
very great and did serve political purposes (regardless of logistical
considerations).

>Logistical factors are a reality of
>war-making, like it or not, and *must* be taken into account when
>evaluating a weapon. Performance may justify the added burden, or it may
>not - this is what we pay military professionals to evaluate.

Granted. But there are examples of military professionals providing
"logistical" excuses for refusing or revising what are otherwise good
weapons choices. There is a great deal of political consideration that must
be factored in. (Of course, the opposite is probably also true.)

>> What does drill accomplish?
>> What does the rifle range teach a soldier?

> (snip)


>> Does either of these training activities have anything to do with combat?
>> Yes and no.
>(snip)
>> The manner in which they a likely to use a rife is not same as on
>> the range. (Paper targets aren't people and they don't fire back.)
>
>So are you saying ability to hit what you're aiming for isn't important?

No. But to some degree, I would argue that an assault rifle, specifically
the MP44, has a greater probability of hitting without precise aim. And it
probably had a greater effect ITO pinning down enemy troops.

>Sure, the rifle range is easier than shooting at a camoflaged or moving
>target that's shooting back, but in all training you start with the
>fundamentals and simple conditions and master them and *then* you can try
>repetition under more difficult conditions. But if you can't hit a paper
>target at a known range you will never hit a real target in combat.

I agree. Having argued for increased hit probabilities due to the
characteristics of the MP44, I'd also agree that aiming is significant. But
the kind of aim that's necessary in combat is far less rigorous than the
kind required with a bolt or semi rifle (and once you're in close combat,
everybody's effectively got an SMG).

>(snip)


>Noise, smoke, and flash do
>very little to break the enemy's morale or cohesion; casualties, OTOH, do
>so rapidly. And to cause casualties against infantry a rifleman must hit
>what he is aiming for. At 1-200 meters, which is well within effective
>rifle range and a quite common range in WW2 combat, "spray and pray" just
>doesn't work; without aiming you can easily put hundreds of rounds
>downrange and never hit a man-sized target.

Granted.

>> This, indeed, is probably the most interesting point to consider. Did the
>> MP44 cause a significant (noticeable) change in the combat performance of
>> German infantry?
>
>Apparently it handily impressed the Soviets who were the main
>"beneficiaries" of its use.

Does anyone know any specific examples? I've come across some second hand
comments, but I'd really like to see some more detailed stuff.

>> Would its use help to explain the rather definite
>> qualitative advantage the German units had in combat against the Allies
>> (even later in the war when Allied training and experience were
>comparable
>> and sometimes better).
>
>The Germans kept this advantage even where MP 44's were not in use; there
>were very few if any in Normandy yet German infantry had a major tactical
>advantage over the experienced troops of the Big Red One: an excellent
>squad MG and proper doctrine for its use. Just about every account I've
>read by US troops emphasizes the enormous advantage this gave the Germans.

Agreed. My interest however is in the impact of the MP44 on combat.

>Trying to use a rifle - an assault rifle or a high-powered semiauto - in
>place of an MG is just not smart.


I completely agree. It was not my intention to argue for using an assault
rifle in place of a MG.

Ralph Zuljan
http://www.geocities.com/Pentagon/1084


John Ongtooguk

unread,
Jan 5, 1998, 3:00:00 AM1/5/98
to

Osmo Ronkanen (ronk...@cc.helsinki.fi) wrote:

: John Ongtooguk <jo...@vcd.hp.com> wrote:
: >
: > Why would well trained troops need short range full auto capability


: > when their long range aimed fire was evidently as effective as

: > massed machine guns, and was mistaken for such ? The only difference


: > would be the need for using much more ammo at a shorter range.

: Why? Maybe because two men with assault rifles have same fire power as a


: squad of men with bold-action rifles.There is no question about the fact
: that assault rifles greatly increase the fire power of infantry.

All of you 'assualt rifle' advocates seem to keep forgetting that
the increased firepower is only effective at shorter ranges and
at the expense of increased ammo expenditure. Again, one never sees
AKs and their variants at highpower rifle matches as they are not
accurate enough nor powerful enough for accurate long range shooting.
The typical assualt rifle is fine for short range and especially
for marginally trained troops, but a well trained rifleman can
take advantage of the capabilities of more versatile weapons, ones
that are also capable of long range aimed fire.

John Ongtooguk (jo...@vcd.hp.com)


John Ongtooguk

unread,
Jan 6, 1998, 3:00:00 AM1/6/98
to

Ralph Zuljan (zul...@worldchat.com) wrote:

: ....What is more effective? A single


: machine gunner or a squad armed with bolt action rifles? The death toll in
: WWI speaks for itself: machine gunner--a lot of kills, rifle soldier--not

: many...

Well, looking at one well trained rifleman, using a bolt action
rifle at that, Sgt. York managed to capture a number of machine
gunners using well aimed fire :^) In any case an assault rifle
is not a machine gun as it doesn't have the long range capabilities
that a machine gun does or the sustained rate of fire. If you
want to compare an individual soldier with an assault rifle
versus a soldier with a 'real rifle' then it's really more a
matter of who received the best training. Obviously a sniper
who engages targets out to 1000 yards will be more effective than
someone who has trouble hitting man sized targets at 100 yards,
which is why snipers are more feared than a typical foot soldier
regardless of what type of rifle the grunt is carrying. As I've
mentioned previously the typical assault rifle is fine for
short range use or for use by marginally trained troops.

: > The only difference


: > would be the need for using much more ammo at a shorter range.

: Only somebody trapped in the rather silly view that the logistical tail


: should wag the tactical dog would even suggest such a statement (although it
: would seem you are not alone on in the ng). If improved combat performance
: requires more ammo, then more ammo is required. Let the logistics people
: figure it out. (Hey, build another munitions factory.)

A rifle squad is usually composed of three riflemen and one
one automatic rifleman, in part because ammo consumption
is and has always been a concern. This has been the case
regardless of what type of weapons are being carried.

: > The US Marines and other 'well trained troops' have done just


: > fine in combat, in spite of the amount of time that the Marines
: > spend on the drill field and on the rifle range. Again it's
: > merely a matter of training.

: .. The manner in which they a likely to use a rife is not same as on


: the range. (Paper targets aren't people and they don't fire back.)

Well trained troops, such as the US Marines, spend a lot of time
on the rifle range in order to learn how to engage targets at
known distances. Are you saying that these skills are not used
in the various combat courses and exercises ? In fact in addition
to qualifying on a known distance range Marines also qualify on
a 'combat course'.

: Furthermore, the real issue is not whether a bolt or semi rifle (e.g., M1)


: can perform as well as an assault rifle like the MP44 (given enough training
: for the troops). If that were the case, you would lose the argument right
: away since it implies that equipping with an assault rifle increases
: training efficiency and a soldier's weapons proficiency.

A typical assault rifle does not have the same capabilities of
a 'real rifle'. No amount of training will allow a typical
assault rifle to perform as well at longer ranges as a 'real
rifle'. If troops will not be expected to engage the enemy
at longer ranges then an assault rifle should work just fine.
Such troops will be at a disadvantage when enganging better
trained troops who are using 'real rifles' which are capable
of accurate long range fire. The question is still one of
type of weapon vs amount of training, where the US military
has backed off of full auto capability for burst fire and better
long range performance in it's rifle. One actually sees M16A2s
and the civilian versions on the highpower rifle range, and one
never sees AKs and such.

: This, indeed, is probably the most interesting point to consider. Did the


: MP44 cause a significant (noticeable) change in the combat performance of

: German infantry? Would its use help to explain the rather definite


: qualitative advantage the German units had in combat against the Allies
: (even later in the war when Allied training and experience were comparable
: and sometimes better).

When one reads accounts of Canadian and British troops trying
to break out of Normandy one runs across comments that they
felt that they were outclassed, that the Germans were better
soldiers. In letters to his wife Patton commented that the US
troops didn't fight that well. In both cases they tended to
exhibit a hesitation to engage, preferring to let air or arty
destroy the enemy. "Never send in a soldier when a shell can
do job" or something along those lines, which works well in
minimizing casualties provided the logistics are adequate and
one can wait for fire support. The Germans were good, very good,
and provided their staff NCOs and officers remained intact,
the units could quickly reform after a punishing bombardment
and quickly counterattack.

John Ongtooguk (jo...@vcd.hp.com)


John M. Atkinson

unread,
Jan 6, 1998, 3:00:00 AM1/6/98
to

jo...@vcd.hp.com (John Ongtooguk) wrote:

> All of you 'assualt rifle' advocates seem to keep forgetting that
> the increased firepower is only effective at shorter ranges and
> at the expense of increased ammo expenditure. Again, one never sees

Yeah. But, we (i.e. assault rifle advocates) can point out that it is
extremely rare for infantry to engage targets at more than 300 meters,
which is well within effective range, even for a "mediocre" rifleman.
Bolt-action, 7.62mm/.303/.30-06 weapons are all well and good for
snipers, but not for regular troops.


John M. Atkinson

"Being intelligent is not a felony. But most societies evaluate
it as at least a misdemeanor."
--L. Long

John M. Atkinson

unread,
Jan 6, 1998, 3:00:00 AM1/6/98
to


jo...@vcd.hp.com (John Ongtooguk) wrote:

> Well, looking at one well trained rifleman, using a bolt action
> rifle at that, Sgt. York managed to capture a number of machine
> gunners using well aimed fire :^) In any case an assault rifle

Note: He recieved a medal for this. This implies, at least to me,
that it was a extremely rare occasion.

> matter of who received the best training. Obviously a sniper
> who engages targets out to 1000 yards will be more effective than
> someone who has trouble hitting man sized targets at 100 yards,

One will rarely find someone who can't hit at 100 yards. I can hit a
target at that range with a burst from the hip with a '16. Book range
for an M-16 is 550 yards. That's well more than the typical WWII
engagement range for infantry.

> A rifle squad is usually composed of three riflemen and one
> one automatic rifleman, in part because ammo consumption

No, that's a fire team.

Jonathan Perkins

unread,
Jan 6, 1998, 3:00:00 AM1/6/98
to

> : ....What is more effective? A single
> : machine gunner or a squad armed with bolt action rifles? The death toll in
> : WWI speaks for itself: machine gunner--a lot of kills, rifle soldier--not
> : many...


Well, the Germans on the receiving end of BEF rifle fire at Mons
in 1914 might dispute that! BEF troops, equipped with an almost criminally
small number of machine guns, were able to produce such heavy and accurate
rifle fire that the Germans remained convinced for many years thereafter
that the number of British MGs had been significantly higher. However, the
troops that did this were some of the most highly trained and skilled
riflemen the world has yet seen. Once their ranks were decimated, and
Kitchener's hastily trained volunteer army took to the field, the quality
of British marksmanship declined and the machine gun rose to the fore.
This is not to argue that the lone rifleman (Sgt. York perhaps excepted!)
can normally match the machine gun, but it is to show that massed rifle
fire from trained troops can be deadly.

[Snip....]


> A rifle squad is usually composed of three riflemen and one
> one automatic rifleman, in part because ammo consumption

> is and has always been a concern. This has been the case
> regardless of what type of weapons are being carried.


Indeed! It is interesting to note that, in the transition from
single-shot rifles to magazine-fed repeating rifles, it was common
military practice up to WWI to equip these rifles with magazine cut-
offs. This allowed commanders to control long-range volley fire one
shot at a time, and prevented the troops from blasting off a full
magazine of precious ammunition in short order. Magazine cut-offs
often were highly polished so that platoon commanders and NCOs could
tell at a glance whether they were activated or not. Ammunition
conservation and fire control has been a timeless concern, and certainly
was an issue still in WWII among all armies.

Deas gu cath....

--
----------
Jon Perkins--Ottawa, Canada
jper...@ccs.carleton.ca "fortiter in re, suaviter in modo"


Kennedy How

unread,
Jan 6, 1998, 3:00:00 AM1/6/98
to


John Ongtooguk wrote:

> All of you 'assualt rifle' advocates seem to keep forgetting that
> the increased firepower is only effective at shorter ranges and
> at the expense of increased ammo expenditure. Again, one never sees

> AKs and their variants at highpower rifle matches as they are not
> accurate enough nor powerful enough for accurate long range shooting.
> The typical assualt rifle is fine for short range and especially
> for marginally trained troops, but a well trained rifleman can
> take advantage of the capabilities of more versatile weapons, ones
> that are also capable of long range aimed fire.

Yes. But when you are on the defensive, and being way outnumbered, then
you want a lot of short range firepower because that human wave attack
is almost on top of you. Having a rifle that can give you 30 bangs vs
10 or so in a bolt action rifle in this instance is preferrable. And of
course, at the end of WWII, when the Germans were outnumbered by the
Russians......

I might have missed something over the holidays, but looking at using an
assault rifle on the Western Front in WWI, what were the ranges between
the trench lines? I remember a passage in the Ballantine Book "Infantry
Weapons", in the section about assault rifles, when Hitler objected to
the lack of range of the Kurz round, the comment made was "Where was
Corporal Hitler when we needed 400 yards?" (or something to that
effect).

Kennedy


John Ongtooguk

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Jan 6, 1998, 3:00:00 AM1/6/98
to


John M. Atkinson (Jatk...@REMOVE.ix.netcom.com) wrote:

: jo...@vcd.hp.com (John Ongtooguk) wrote:
:
: > All of you 'assualt rifle' advocates seem to keep forgetting that
: > the increased firepower is only effective at shorter ranges and
: > at the expense of increased ammo expenditure. Again, one never sees

: Yeah. But, we (i.e. assault rifle advocates) can point out that it is


: extremely rare for infantry to engage targets at more than 300 meters,
: which is well within effective range, even for a "mediocre" rifleman.
: Bolt-action, 7.62mm/.303/.30-06 weapons are all well and good for
: snipers, but not for regular troops.

If the infantry are trained to engage and actually hit targets
at longer ranges then they will be able to do so as required.
In Desert Storm there were a number of engagements at long range,
much longer than the usual 200 yard qualification range that
I believe the US Army uses. In addition bolt action rifles aren't
needed for decent long range performance, nor are full size 7.62mm
semi-autos, as a properly designed 5.56mm will do just fine. Why
limit the potential effectiveness of one's troops with a short
range 'assualt rifle' like the AK and it's variants when the
same capabilities plus decent long range performance are offered
by other designs ?

By looking at just bullet design it's possible to follow the
see-saw of shorter range vs longer range performance of infantry
rifles, and for quite awhile we essentially copied German
developments. The 30.06 was originally designed for use with
a heavy bullet but the design was changed to use a lighter
bullet with more muzzle velocity. Between WWI and WWII the
Germans developed a slightly heavier boattail design that
offered excellent long range performance and we followed suit
by issuing a 173 grain boattail for the 30.06. A 150 grain
flat base bullet was eventually used in the M1 Garand, which
offered a bit more muzzle velocity, less recoil, less wear
and tear on the gas operated mechanism, but reduced long range
performance. The armor piercing round was a 165 grain (there
are 7000 grains to a pound) steel cored boattail bullet that
was very effective, while the target shooting 'match ammo'
still used the 173 gr boattail bullet. The 7.62mm NATO round
used a 150 grain boattail bullet with the target round using
the same 173 gr boattail used in the 30.06 target round. The
M16A1 used a 55gr boattail at a muzzle velocity of about
3250 feet per second, while the M16A2 uses something like
a steel cored 69gr boattail at a bit over 2800 feet per second;
less velocity but better long range performance, especially
armor piercing performance.

In any case 'regular troops' like the US Marines have always
emphasized marksmanship, have always believed that all troops
are riflemen first, and still at 500 yards on the rifle range.

John Ongtooguk (jo...@vcd.hp.com)


Bruce Rennie

unread,
Jan 7, 1998, 3:00:00 AM1/7/98
to

John M. Atkinson <Jatk...@REMOVE.ix.netcom.com> wrote:


> jo...@vcd.hp.com (John Ongtooguk) wrote:

> > Well, looking at one well trained rifleman, using a bolt action
> > rifle at that, Sgt. York managed to capture a number of machine
> > gunners using well aimed fire :^) In any case an assault rifle

> Note: He recieved a medal for this. This implies, at least to me,


> that it was a extremely rare occasion.

Probably true. However, in The Guns of August, Tuchman notes that the British
infantry could accomplish quite a bit with just bolt action rifles. Trained
to fire 15 aimed shots per minute, the Germans who encountered them at Mons
believed they were being fired at by machine guns.

/bruce

--
*******************************************************************************
* Bruce Rennie Q: Are We Not Men ? *
* bre...@interlog.com *
* *
* Suffering from Bloc Quebecois? Try new Seperation H! *
* Canada is like vichysoise: Cold, partly French, and difficult to stir. *
* *
*******************************************************************************


C.C. Jordan

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Jan 7, 1998, 3:00:00 AM1/7/98
to


On 6 Jan 1998 17:19:34 GMT, Jatk...@REMOVE.ix.netcom.com (John M. Atkinson)
wrote:

>jo...@vcd.hp.com (John Ongtooguk) wrote:
>
>> All of you 'assualt rifle' advocates seem to keep forgetting that
>> the increased firepower is only effective at shorter ranges and
>> at the expense of increased ammo expenditure. Again, one never sees
>
>Yeah. But, we (i.e. assault rifle advocates) can point out that it is
>extremely rare for infantry to engage targets at more than 300 meters,
>which is well within effective range, even for a "mediocre" rifleman.
>Bolt-action, 7.62mm/.303/.30-06 weapons are all well and good for
>snipers, but not for regular troops.
>
>

>John M. Atkinson

This is an interesting bit of information. It comes from Sasser and Roberts'
One Shot-One Kill.

The number of rifle rounds expended to account for one dead enemy
soldier, killed by small arms fire.

WWII: An average of 25,000 rounds fired.
Korea: An average of 50,000 rounds fired.
Vietnam: An average that exceeded 200,000 rounds fired.

The authors do an excellent job of establishing a corrolation between the
number or rounds fired to the type of weapon used. That is, beyond the obvious
conclusion one will draw from the statistics. The myth that more ammunition can
be carried takes a beating. When one considers the 900% increase in expenditure,
the 40% reduction in cartridge weight becomes meaningless.

The trained sniper expends 1.3 rounds per kill.

The problem with assault rifles is not the limited range. An M16A2 can shoot
with amazing accuracy out to about 400 yards. Unfortunately, the vast majority
of soldiers cannot. For many years the emphasis of military fire arms training
swung away from slow aimed fire. Vietnam illustrates this very well.

The assault rifle has it's purpose. It can place high volumes of fire on a
target when required. However, it is a much more effective weapon when used
in the slow aimed fire mode, so to speak. The MP44 introduced the world to
an all purpose combat rifle. Capable of providing surpressive fire and being
accurate enough to be used in the traditional role ( and more effective ) of
slow aimed fire. It's ability to maintain a high rate of fire without reloading
provided an edge over the standard battle rifles of the day, including the
M1 Garand. Moreover, the 7.92 mm Kurtz cartridge was vastly surperior the
.30 cal. M1 Carbine round, which is little more than a pistol cartridge.

Best regards,

Osmo Ronkanen

unread,
Jan 8, 1998, 3:00:00 AM1/8/98
to

In article <690ppo$1...@gazette.bcm.tmc.edu>,

John Ongtooguk <jo...@hp-vcd.vcd.hp.com> wrote:
>
> If the infantry are trained to engage and actually hit targets
> at longer ranges then they will be able to do so as required.

The point is that at longer distances estimating the range becomes
critical. Past 600 hitting anything in battle situation is a matter of
luck. Sure you can cause some nuisance but then the enemy can neutralize
you with artillery. The safety zone for artillery is 300 meters.

> The 30.06 was originally designed for use with
> a heavy bullet but the design was changed to use a lighter
> bullet with more muzzle velocity.

And maybe for a reason. The lighter bullet gives a flatter trajectory.
Sure it lacks the killing power at distances 2000-4000m but nobody hits
at that range anyway. Here we used 200 grain (13g) bullet that had about
same muzzle velocity as AK-47, good for indirect fire on machine guns
but not that good for individual soldier.
...


>
> In any case 'regular troops' like the US Marines have always
> emphasized marksmanship, have always believed that all troops
> are riflemen first, and still at 500 yards on the rifle range.
>

Rifle range and combat are two different things.

The real question is what do you do with your .30-06 rifle when you need
automatic fire? Do you carry a separate weapon for close combat?

Osmo


Lee Russell

unread,
Jan 8, 1998, 3:00:00 AM1/8/98
to

Sergeant Alvin York did indeed kill about two dozen German soldiers and
capture over a hundred more with his bolt-action M1917 Enfield rifle.
However, as he admitted, most of this fire was delivered at close range,
and was more a result of his skill at snap shooting than his long-range
marksmanship.

John Ongtooguk

unread,
Jan 8, 1998, 3:00:00 AM1/8/98
to


John M. Atkinson (Jatk...@REMOVE.ix.netcom.com) wrote:

: jo...@vcd.hp.com (John Ongtooguk) wrote:
:
: > All of you 'assualt rifle' advocates seem to keep forgetting that
: > the increased firepower is only effective at shorter ranges and
: > at the expense of increased ammo expenditure. Again, one never sees

: Yeah. But, we (i.e. assault rifle advocates) can point out that it is
: extremely rare for infantry to engage targets at more than 300 meters,
: which is well within effective range, even for a "mediocre" rifleman.
: Bolt-action, 7.62mm/.303/.30-06 weapons are all well and good for
: snipers, but not for regular troops.

But given suitable weapons and training the infantry does routinely
engage targets at ranges over 300 meters, which is why machine gun
and mortar units are attached to infantry units :^) I think that
we're talking past each other on this subject as I don't think that
anyone is suggesting to rearm the infantry with bolt action rifles
or even full power semi-auto rifles like the M1 Garand or M14,
rather as someone pointed out earlier the idea on what the ideal
rifle and cartridge is is still a controversial subject. I also don't
think that anyone can avoid acknowledging the innovation, success and
effectiveness of the German MP-44 and especially the weapon which
fully developed the intent of the design, which was the AK-47. The
point that I tried to initially make is that the 'ideal infantry
rifle/weapon' is very much related to what is expected of the
troops and how they will be trained, and I have provided a number
of examples on how effective well trained riflemen can be. I have
also noted that 'regular troops' like the US Marines do train
to engage targets with their rifles at ranges exceeding 300 yards,
but they need to use more capable weapons than the AK-47 and it's
variants.

John Ongtooguk (jo...@vcd.hp.com)


efr...@msuvx2.memphis.edu

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Jan 8, 1998, 3:00:00 AM1/8/98
to


Jonathan Perkins <jper...@rideau.carleton.ca> writes:
> Well, the Germans on the receiving end of BEF rifle fire at Mons
> in 1914 might dispute that! BEF troops, equipped with an almost criminally
> small number of machine guns,

Actually, I think you will find that every modern
army in Europe in 1914 had the same levels of
machine gun allotments (which, IIRC, was on the
order of two per battalion). The "criminally
small number" of machine guns in the BEF is a
myth. It may be true that the Brits organized
and controlled theirs differently; it may be
true that for local reasons they lacked a
sufficiency of MGs at Mons; but it is not true
that they had any less MGs *per division* than
anyone else.

I'm going from memory here, but I think this is
the case.

Hope the moderators will pass this one, even
without WWII content.

[Moderators's note: since this is a followup rubutting a specific
point we will let one through. Further followups without ww2 content
should be directed to either soc.history.moderated or
soc.history.war.misc....rhm]

Ed Frank

Kennedy How

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Jan 8, 1998, 3:00:00 AM1/8/98
to


C.C. Jordan wrote:

> The number of rifle rounds expended to account for one dead enemy
> soldier, killed by small arms fire.
>
> WWII: An average of 25,000 rounds fired.
> Korea: An average of 50,000 rounds fired.
> Vietnam: An average that exceeded 200,000 rounds fired.
>
> The authors do an excellent job of establishing a corrolation between the
> number or rounds fired to the type of weapon used. That is, beyond the obvious
> conclusion one will draw from the statistics.

I haven't read this, so I don't know what all the correlations are, but
using Vietnam as an example wouldn't be all that valid to me. You have
troops all armed with full auto weapons, an enemy that is hard to see
and who carry away their dead, and the penchant for inflated body
counts. Throw in the "Mad Minute", and I'm surprised that the #s are
that low. Either way, it's skewed.

I would be more interested in comparing ammo usage in say, areas of
battle in WWII, like in Hedgerow or Hurtgen Forest, compared to Western
Desert or East Front. This seems to me a more apples to apples
comparison, since I can't think of a "stand-up" conflict of sufficient
duration to do a good comparision of assault rifle ammo usage compared
to that of semi rifles.

Kennedy


George Avery

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Jan 9, 1998, 3:00:00 AM1/9/98
to


John Ongtooguk <jo...@vcd.hp.com> wrote in article
<693qpb$g...@gazette.bcm.tmc.edu>...


>
>
> John M. Atkinson (Jatk...@REMOVE.ix.netcom.com) wrote:
>
> : jo...@vcd.hp.com (John Ongtooguk) wrote:
> :

> The
> point that I tried to initially make is that the 'ideal infantry
> rifle/weapon' is very much related to what is expected of the
> troops and how they will be trained, and I have provided a number
> of examples on how effective well trained riflemen can be. I have
> also noted that 'regular troops' like the US Marines do train
> to engage targets with their rifles at ranges exceeding 300 yards,
> but they need to use more capable weapons than the AK-47 and it's
> variants.
>

To give an even earlier example, in the American Civil War, ten Confederate
snipers with special scoped rifles tied up a Union Brigade trying to build
the "cracker-line" at Chattannooga. Of course, it wouldn't have made sense
to put the same rifles ($1000 a copy, 1863 money) in the hands of the
ordinary trooper.

ALFRED GARLAND

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Jan 9, 1998, 3:00:00 AM1/9/98
to


C.C. Jordan <C.C.J...@Worldnet.att.net> wrote in article
<690uqc$n...@gazette.bcm.tmc.edu>...

> On 6 Jan 1998 17:19:34 GMT, Jatk...@REMOVE.ix.netcom.com (John M.
Atkinson)

> wrote:

> >jo...@vcd.hp.com (John Ongtooguk) wrote:

> The number of rifle rounds expended to account for one dead enemy
> soldier, killed by small arms fire.
>
> WWII: An average of 25,000 rounds fired.
> Korea: An average of 50,000 rounds fired.
> Vietnam: An average that exceeded 200,000 rounds fired.
>
> The authors do an excellent job of establishing a corrolation between the
> number or rounds fired to the type of weapon used. That is, beyond the obvious

> conclusion one will draw from the statistics. The myth that more ammunition can
> be carried takes a beating. When one considers the 900% increase in expenditure,
> the 40% reduction in cartridge weight becomes meaningless.
>
> The trained sniper expends 1.3 rounds per kill.

These statistics tell the whole story. The application of controlled,
aimed, small arms fire in any operation will deliver better results than
the "Spray and Pray" attitude that comes with assault rifles and our
current training systems

To suggest that Infantry soldiers have never engaged the enemy at distance
is a nonsense During the South African War of 1898-1901 the Boers often
engagedtheir enemy at ranges in excess of 600 metres. Also at the Battle at
Beersheba on 31st October 1917, the Turkish iriflemen opened fire at a
range of 1,000 metres Each could open fire at extended distances because
of the terrain. The same options were available to troops operating in
North Africa during World War II. Any well trained troops can engage the
enemy at ranges in excess of 200 to 300 metres if they are practiced in
this sort of shooting. Unfortunately in our western armies today we lack
the incentive to train our servicemen to the standard of "one shot, one
kill". In stead we teach them to "Spray and Pray".

C.C. Jordan

unread,
Jan 10, 1998, 3:00:00 AM1/10/98
to


On Thu, 08 Jan 1998 12:23:11 -0500, Kennedy How <howl...@tir.com> wrote:

>
>
>C.C. Jordan wrote:
>
>> The number of rifle rounds expended to account for one dead enemy
>> soldier, killed by small arms fire.
>>
>> WWII: An average of 25,000 rounds fired.
>> Korea: An average of 50,000 rounds fired.
>> Vietnam: An average that exceeded 200,000 rounds fired.
>>
>> The authors do an excellent job of establishing a corrolation between the
>> number or rounds fired to the type of weapon used. That is, beyond the obvious
>> conclusion one will draw from the statistics.
>

>I haven't read this, so I don't know what all the correlations are, but
>using Vietnam as an example wouldn't be all that valid to me. You have
>troops all armed with full auto weapons, an enemy that is hard to see
>and who carry away their dead, and the penchant for inflated body
>counts. Throw in the "Mad Minute", and I'm surprised that the #s are
>that low. Either way, it's skewed.

[snip]
>Kennedy
>

I will certainly grant you that accurate body counts were all but impossible
in many instances. The data very likely is skewed somewhat. However,
it is the only data available.

The purpose was to illustrate the wastage of ammunition caused by the issue
of fully automatic rifles. Mad Minutes seldom resulted in casualties to the VC
or NVA. They simply went to ground and waited. What they did was eat up
a couple of magazines of ammo. Sure, if used as surpression fire to allow a
unit to egress an area, then it has served some purpose. However, that was
usually not the purpose.

Sasser and Roberts were speaking to the lack of marksmanship frequently
encountered during the Vietnam war. How many times has one seen (in person
or on the TV news) some soldier raise his rifle up from cover and empty the
magazine without even looking? Who taught these men how to shoot?

During WWII, the basic U.S. Army infantry squad may have had 1 BAR and
perhaps, a subgun, though not usually. The soldiers expended a great deal
less ammunition. Certainly in WWII, much ammo was used in keeping the
Germans heads down to allow for maneuver. Generally, this was **aimed** fire as
opposed to the willy nilly unaimed racket frequently put up in the Nam.
I'm convinced that the typical WWII infantryman was far better trained in
fire discipline. They were taught that ammunition wastage meant an empty
weapon. An empty weapon not only endangered the man carrying it, it
endangered the unit as a whole.

Sasser and Roberts easily established that slow aimed fire ( by slow, I mean
you squeeze off rounds one at a time carefully using the sights) was far more
effective than blasting away on full auto with the rifle climbing or hammering
away from the hip. I once heard a Marine Gunnery Sgt. say, " show me a
man shooting from the hip and I'll show you our next casualty". The authors
do not dismiss the purpose of automatic fire, they simply show that is not as
frequently required in combat as many have been taught to believe. Sasser
and Roberts present us with the story of the sniper from WWII up to the Marine
deployment in Lebanon in 1983. The book also makes a compelling argument for
better marksmanship training and fire discipline in our military.

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