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Combat Weaponcraft

Training for insider attacks: Alert, aware advisors key to saving lives

The threat of insider attacks in Afghanistan is very real. In the past year, 14 percent of coalition casualties resulted from attacks by Afghan National Security Forces or by infiltrators posing as ANSF. At the 162nd Infantry Brigade, training advisors to prevent these incidents is taken seriously.

Hearing Conservation Program: Can you hear me now?

What is the first thing you think of when you hear about someone being injured in combat? Perhaps it’s a gunshot wound, burn injuries, severe head trauma, or even an amputation.

Sergeant Michael Pressler, an artillery mechanic aboard Marine Corps Logistics Base Barstow, Calif., along with countless other service members suffer from something different. It is something that will affect them for the rest of their lives and is the number one injury in combat, according to Michelle Wolfe, an occupational health nurse aboard MCLB.

M2A1 Machine Gun features greater safety, heightened lethality

The Army recently announced that the M2A1 .50 Caliber Machine Gun was among its top 10 "Army Greatest Inventions" for the 2011 calendar year.

The M2A1 includes new modern features and design improvements that make it easier and safer to use, including a quick change barrel, fixed headspace and timing, and a new flash hider that reduces the weapon's signature by 95 percent at night.

"The M2A1 builds upon the legend of a phenomenal weapon system," said Lt. Col. Thomas Ryan, Product Manager Crew Served Weapons.

Israel’s Iron Dome Missile Shield

Israel's Iron Dome missile shield appears to be passing its first major test, stopping hundreds of Gaza rockets from hitting Israeli communities in recent days. But that test also has revealed several weaknesses in the year-old U.S.-backed system.

The Israeli military said Tuesday that Iron Dome has intercepted at least 389 rockets since Israel began its offensive against Gaza militants November 14. An Israeli defense official said that figure represents at least 80 percent of all Gaza rockets targeted by the system over the period.

‘Impressive’ Results

Soldiers conduct reflexive fire marksmanship, raise readiness

Soldiers from Headquarters and Headquarters Company, U.S. Army Garrison Yongsan conducted reflexive fire marksmanship training at Training Support Activity-Korea, Nov. 15.

The 20 Soldiers partaking in the training were tasked with firing their M16's while in motion. The training allowed Soldiers of HHC, USAG Yongsan to raise overall readiness and combat effectiveness.

M249 Light Machine Gun: Endangered species for Marines in Afghanistan

As full integration of the Infantry Automatic Rifle into the Marine Corps’ arsenal becomes complete, the M249 Light Machine Gun, formerly the Squad Automatic Weapon, slowly fades into the history of the Corps.

The SAW has seen action since 1984 and has protected Marines since. Replaced by an automatic rifle of similar size and weight of the M16A4 service rifle already issued to rank and file Marines, the familiarity with the new weapon is almost instant.


While many people talk about the need for an infantryman with a rifle, the fact remains that an infantryman brings very little relative firepower to the table. On the ground, much of the firepower on the front lines comes from tanks, infantry fighting vehicles, and armored personnel carriers.

One cannot really fight a war without these, especially on the ground. These vehicles can often provide protection, transportation, and fire support. The tanks, APCs, and IFVs in service today are proven veterans.

Female body armor named among best inventions by Time Magazine

An innovation that will leave female Soldiers safer and more comfortable on the battlefield was named one of Time Magazine's "Best Inventions of the Year 2012."

A collaborative effort between the Natick Soldier Research, Development and Engineering Center and Program Executive Office Soldier resulted in an improved outer tactical vest, or IOTV, designed specifically for women. The 101st Airborne Division's 1st Brigade will be the first unit to test the new female body armor in Afghanistan.

Along came a spider

The Spider XM7 Network Command Munition is a hand-emplaced, remotely controlled, man-in-the-loop, anti-personnel munitions system. Through positive radio control and positive target identification, the Spider meets 2004 Ottowa Treaty and National Landmine Policies. It replaces earlier landmine and anti-personnel systems that were often remote detonated.