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  #1  
Old August 26th, 2006, 20:32
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"Army makes soldiers get comfortable carrying weapons". . . actual headline.

Enjoy!

http://cbs4boston.com/nationalwire/W...rces_news_html
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Old August 26th, 2006, 21:27
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Re: "Army makes soldiers get comfortable carrying weapons". . . actual headline.

I watch the guys and gals being trained for the barrel down carry. I always thought this was a mistake. The fraction of a second difference in getting off the first shot, doesn't offset the additional danger of shooting one of your own people accidentaly. There are going to be accidental discharges. One reason I've always prefered the barrel up, carry.
Freindly fire deaths and injuries are a whole lot more common than one would think. The only ones a person ever hears about, are the obvious ones.
I've got three bullet holes in me. Two are below my knees. One hit the dirt and came back up, the other diagonally down through my right calf. Both times somebody pulled the trigger, before they aimed there weapon.
Somebody, someplace, is probably this second, climbing out of there car door with the shift still in drive.
Police, Game Wardens, hunters and others also have there share of accidental discharges.
I've always preferred, chamber empty carry, unless firing was immenant. I don't trust safeties or sears.
I watched a guy blow his own kneecap off clearing his pistol in the guard house. He actually froze in place with his finger still on the trigger. I slowly walker over and pushed the barrel up, then took his finger from inside the trigger guard, cleared the weapon and then slapped him up side the head with the empty pistol ( I know not cool, but my hormones were ragging too).
I watched a guy blow most of his forearm off climbing out of a truck with his own weapon. I've seen a whole bunch of bullet holes in various vehicles, traveling from the inside out.
One reason I really like my P-7 (or the 1911), with the squeeze cocker, you really have to be trying hard (sarcasim) for it to accidentally discharge.
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Old August 26th, 2006, 21:38
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Re: "Army makes soldiers get comfortable carrying weapons". . . actual headline.

8Mud - that's why they're not called AD's anymore - they're ND's (Negligent Discharges.) Very few are truly accidental in nature...

As far as "barrel up/barrel down" carry, I tend to prefer barrel down. It keeps things from falling into the barrel - especialy with small-calibre firearms (anything in the .22 persuasion, for instance.) If you're going to carry barrel up, using a "muzzle condom" of some sort is a very good idea!

It's farly simple to rig a sling to effect rapid deployment from a "muzzle down" carry position. However, it's far better to bring your sights up into your line of vision (so you don't break visual contact with the threat,) than it is to "draw down" on your target, and lose contact for the briefest of seconds. I've heard it said "it won't take long to do," but you can kill someone in a fraction of a second, I'd rather watch them.

And, let the media wring their hands - I'd sooner have soldiers "comfortable with firearms" than not. I grew up around a load of firearms, and I'm comfortable. I'm also comfortable with knives, swords, staves, sticks, and other tools - what's the big problem?

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Old August 26th, 2006, 23:41
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Re: "Army makes soldiers get comfortable carrying weapons". . . actual headline.

Still not enough, the accidental discharge rate started going up as the popularity of the shooting sports started going down in the 50's and with the advent of the GCA of 68. Up until then firearms were sold EVERYWHERE from gun shops to gas stations, the decline in hunting also has had alot to do with it. When I took my first hunter safety course it was taught in HS and we used to bring shotguns to school during small game season [rabbit, pheasant, quail, etc] and school was closed during the opening days of deer season.
My kids grew up with guns, in racks and my son got his own first at around 10, a 20 gage pump youth model. My daughter was 10 also when she got her first, a ruger 10/22 with a pink synthetic stock and 2-12 power scope.
Heck, my dads employer, Ballentine beer company sponsored 4 shooting teams, small bore pistol, rifle, big bore and skeet n trap, they shot at the company brewery in Newark and various ranges in NJ. They even gave him a .22 heavybarrel winchester match rifle in a wood case. Ballentines actually had an arms room as did the other brewerys throughout the tristate area.
I remember when my dad was a member of the National Guard after WWII we'd go up to the armoury in west orange where he drilled and check out weapons from the arms room, it wasn't even locked during the day, you signed out the weapons and ammo on the honor system. I learned how to fire the .30 cal browning when I was 10 from a tripod, jeep pintle and the sherman pintle mounts, I hated firing the one in the coax mount cause the brass was a major PIA to clean up inside the tank.
Personally I think firearms safety should be taught in school as part of physical education and small bore shooting should be brought back into school as a normal thing. This war on terror is going to be going on for many many years, as long as there are extremeists in large numbers. I firmly believe that our children not only need to be well versed in the arts and science but in war as well.
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Old August 26th, 2006, 23:42
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Re: "Army makes soldiers get comfortable carrying weapons". . . actual headline.

Just a thought but it seems that at one time in this nation more of our population was familiar with firearms before they even went into the military.
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Old August 27th, 2006, 00:00
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Re: "Army makes soldiers get comfortable carrying weapons". . . actual headline.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RichP
Still not enough, the accidental discharge rate started going up as the popularity of the shooting sports started going down in the 50's and with the advent of the GCA of 68. Up until then firearms were sold EVERYWHERE from gun shops to gas stations, the decline in hunting also has had alot to do with it. When I took my first hunter safety course it was taught in HS and we used to bring shotguns to school during small game season [rabbit, pheasant, quail, etc] and school was closed during the opening days of deer season.
My kids grew up with guns, in racks and my son got his own first at around 10, a 20 gage pump youth model. My daughter was 10 also when she got her first, a ruger 10/22 with a pink synthetic stock and 2-12 power scope.
Heck, my dads employer, Ballentine beer company sponsored 4 shooting teams, small bore pistol, rifle, big bore and skeet n trap, they shot at the company brewery in Newark and various ranges in NJ. They even gave him a .22 heavybarrel winchester match rifle in a wood case. Ballentines actually had an arms room as did the other brewerys throughout the tristate area.
I remember when my dad was a member of the National Guard after WWII we'd go up to the armoury in west orange where he drilled and check out weapons from the arms room, it wasn't even locked during the day, you signed out the weapons and ammo on the honor system. I learned how to fire the .30 cal browning when I was 10 from a tripod, jeep pintle and the sherman pintle mounts, I hated firing the one in the coax mount cause the brass was a major PIA to clean up inside the tank.
Personally I think firearms safety should be taught in school as part of physical education and small bore shooting should be brought back into school as a normal thing. This war on terror is going to be going on for many many years, as long as there are extremeists in large numbers. I firmly believe that our children not only need to be well versed in the arts and science but in war as well.
No argument at all here - but I was eight when I started hunting. Not everyone will make marksmen, but everyone should know how to handle firearms without harming anyone. Likewise, everyone should learn how to swim (at least a basic dogpaddle & crawl, and treading water) and how to get a manual transmission moving - you may not end up driving a stick, but you just may have to some day...

Years ago, police academies would focus on stress shooting and police procedure - since basic marksmanship and firearms safety was instilled from an early age. Ditto the Army - before you can focus on making a soldier, you have to train him to use the tools of his trade. They used to come to Basic knowing that - but they don't anymore.

Maths, sciences, general academia, and how to prosecute and avoid conflicts - seems those would be more important to me than all this "self-esteem" nonsense we're pushing on kids in four languges. What say you?

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Old August 27th, 2006, 00:07
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Re: "Army makes soldiers get comfortable carrying weapons". . . actual headline.

You'd think that was so, but I taught pistol and rifle in the military in the late 60's. About ten percent of the recruits actually had a clue, as to what was what and maybe another ten percent thought they did.
The ones that didn't have a clue were often easier to train.
I've had three accidental discharges in my life, all were with an empty weapon. But in all three cases the muzzle was pointed in a safe direction.
Brain farts happen. But at least I never forget entirely, to point that sucker in a safe direction, even if I thought it was empty.
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Old August 27th, 2006, 00:19
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Re: "Army makes soldiers get comfortable carrying weapons". . . actual headline.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 8Mud
You'd think that was so, but I taught pistol and rifle in the military in the late 60's. About ten percent of the recruits actually had a clue, as to what was what and maybe another ten percent thought they did.
The ones that didn't have a clue were often easier to train.
Oh, dear God, yes they are! No "bad habits" to unlearn...

I'd sooner have to deal with someone who is totally untrained than the semi-competent who insists that he "knows what he's doing" (and usually doesn't...)

I've also found it far easier to train women than men in marksmanship - mainly because there's little to no ego involved, they actually are willing to accept instruction, and tend to be more patient (especially if they have kids...)

I've made it clear, whenever I've had to train someone, that pointing your muzzle at ANYONE or ANYTHING you aren't meant to shoot at will get you hit - even if the firearm is unloaded. The one time that I had a trainee point a firearm in my direction, he ended up flat on the bones of his arse, looking down the muzzle of his own sidearm. Two lessons that day:
1) Always be sure of where your firearm is pointed. Some things can hit back...
2) Always be sure of your firearm control and retention - it can be taken away from you and used against you.

I was covering basic handling that day with firearms unloaded (magazines were all in my pockets, and I individually verified each firearm of the six people I was teaching that day was unloaded...) but it's an important lesson, and sometimes needs to be driven home... I'd be willing to be that all seven of us (and any onlookers...) recall distinctly the events of that day, even if the rest of the day has been lost in a haze of Time...

Interesting to note that the group I was working with was five women and one man - and it was the man that screwed up... The women progressed nicely!

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  #9  
Old August 27th, 2006, 00:43
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Re: "Army makes soldiers get comfortable carrying weapons". . . actual headline.

I once slapped a Leutenant up side the head with his own pistol in my armsroom. After I watched him load a live round into the chamber of his pistol, with it pointed at my stomach. When I told him to point it in another direction, he got all indignant and said, it's OK, it won't fire with the magazine removed, pointed it at my refrigerator and pulled the trigger to show me. Blew a hole through the door of the freezer and halfway through my frozen turkey. Gee it isn't supposed to do that.
I really don't remember snatching the pistol out of his hand and almost breaking his jaw with it.

Last edited by 8Mud; August 27th, 2006 at 00:49.
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Old August 27th, 2006, 02:12
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Re: "Army makes soldiers get comfortable carrying weapons". . . actual headline.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 8Mud
I really don't remember snatching the pistol out of his hand and almost breaking his jaw with it.
And thus was balance restored in the world. You don't remember because it was reflex (for the benefit of others - you probably already know that,) and "reflex" does not involve the brain - the extend of CNS involvement is the spinal cord and basal ganglia. There was no conscious thought on your part, therefore no memory of it.

People who screw up during basic firearms instruction damn well should be knocked silly - it only takes on screwup to take out an instructor or an effective individual, and it should be chalked up to a lesson that should only be learned once (and he didn't kill anyone - even with a broken jaw, he'd have learned that lesson for free...)

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Old August 27th, 2006, 03:04
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Re: "Army makes soldiers get comfortable carrying weapons". . . actual headline.

In the chair force it was far worse when I went through. We touched the rifles for about 3 hours total, and only on the range. When we were firing AND cleaning It was obvious that I was the only person there who had a clue. This baffled my fellow recruits, especially how I was able to drop a few rounds into my neighbors target (they were unmarked, and in close proximity of one another) and still qualify expert, and how in the hell did I know how to disassemble an M-16 having never laid hands on one before. I was very disappointed in the lack of combat arms contact we were given. Were we not in the military?

Our silly little "war games" in basic were retarded to say the least. We "shot" by flashing flashlights at our "attackers" as we crafted a landing pad. They then called the games off because at midnight the temps got down to 20 F or so. It was by far the weakest military training I have ever heard of.

To be honest, I got more contact with firearms in the Boy Scouts, and I certainly got more "combat training"...but we called it Russian SPY(hide and go seek in the dark with teams and time limits).


I was given my guns at 9, along with a bow. I wasn't much of a physical being, but I could put an arrow on target, snipe flying dragonflies in the back yard with my air rifle, and go unnoticed in the woods for hours. Now that I think of it, it's a pity I went into the chair force in the first place, I don't think any other branch would've discharged me over calling a female a bitch I would have just been PT'd to death.
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Old August 27th, 2006, 09:08
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Re: "Army makes soldiers get comfortable carrying weapons". . . actual headline.

For a couple of years I worked across the street from the Military Police Mess Hall. They were required to clear there weapons before entering to eat. About two or three times a week, you'd hear a boom, between 12 and 1230. People are going to have brain lock, when repeating the same sequence a thousand times.
When I say slap a guy up side the head with his own pistol. That is military speak, for taking his pistol out of his hand and/or making sure it is pointing in a reasonably safe direction. You grab the pistol and usually his hand, twist or corkscrew the weapon away from you (and hopefully anybody else in the area) and up, as hard as you can. Whomever is holding the pistol (or rifle) has the tendancy to want to hold on, so your taught to do the move with just about all you got. The end result is usually the weapon (and your knuckles, forearm or elbow) slapping the weapon holder on the side of the head, hard.
Your actually taught to corkscrew, slightly out then up, (keeping the muzzle out of line with your body) and then towards his head (and generally away from his trigger finger), this way it works for both a left or right handed shooter.
I imagine they have new techniques for disarming somebody now, but this was they way we were taught, way back when.

Last edited by 8Mud; August 27th, 2006 at 09:19.
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Old August 27th, 2006, 10:46
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Re: "Army makes soldiers get comfortable carrying weapons". . . actual headline.

I think that has a lot to do with the nature of the Army's business these days: Asymetrical warfare, the involvement of non-traditional "POG" soldiers being pressed into combat patrolling etc, along with the acceptance of more modern weapons handling tactics & equipment...IE the 'tactical sling'

Back in my day, in the initial training phase, there was an overemphasis on dress-right dress, right shoulder arms BS... IE the Manual of Arms dating back to Von Clausewitz & the freakin revolutionary war. Good for some things, but not-so-good for training a newbie into treating their assigned weapon as an extension of their body.

As for the actual live-fire (during 'cold war basic'). We had plenty of slow fire, but very little fire & maneuver, and none in improv positions etc... That was all left to the NCOs at the unit once the troopie was assigned... and in anything other than a Cav or Infantry unit, it was likely waylaid in favor of training for their real MOS job.

I'm glad to see that they are spending more emphasis on weapons training in the Other Army... (guessing that 95+% of the Army is still POG) In a combat arms outfit, in the field everything is tactical... never let your weapon get more than 'arms reach' away and attached is better.

I was one of those 'sick fXXKs' that enjoyed carrying a weapon (-16/203 for the xtra bloop-boom effect) and liked it nearby as much as possible. Many times as an NCO I carried a second -backup- weapon... either a Glock 19 9mm or 5.5" Ruger Redhawk 44. (not always in full view... non-issue toys weren't always smiled on by the brass, but it's usually easier to get forgivenis than permission) A lot of folks never got in that keep-it-nearby groove, and IMO that was a bad habit to be in. The fraction of time one spends thinking "Where's my gun?" is wasted when it should be "Engage, seek next target, repeat." I've seen the first example played out in training (POGs, normally), and it's as much sad as comical.
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Old August 27th, 2006, 14:48
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Re: "Army makes soldiers get comfortable carrying weapons". . . actual headline.

8mud - I didn't mean you intentionally whacked him in the head - but I know the move you're talking about, and its usual results. I was serious about the "reflex" comment tho - and it was proper.

I can also see your point about the "clearing barrel" thing (which never made sense to me - if you can be trusted to carry a sidearm, you can be trusted to carry a sidearm all the time.) However, I am minded of a story at SFO shortly after 09/11, when the CANG was taking over security for a little while, and some yo-yo shot himself in the arse drawing his sidearm to clear it! Thus, the need to make people "comfortable carrying firearms" - while it's still possible to get low brain voltage, muscle memory should take over and keep you from shooting yourself in the arse (or the foot, or wherever.) I can honestly say that I have had no ND's, and I've never shot anything I didn't intend to shoot. "Your number one safety is carried between your ears" got hammered into me (literally!) at about age six by my grandfather. By not raising our children around firearms, knives, and tools of destruction and harm (don't go overboard with it, but what happened to the "rite of passage" of getting your first personal penknife? I got mine for my fifth birthday, and haven't been willingly without a blade of some sort since...) to allow them to A) get comfortable handling and carrying them; and B) to impart a particularly good lesson in personal responsibility. I used to carry my pocketknife to school, and it came in handy around lunchtime quite often. No-one had any problem with it - probably half of the school (staff and females included!) carried some sort of personal blade.

As far as pogues being "pressed into field duty," I've got my ideas. The Marines have a saying - "Every Marine is a rifleman first." This should be extended to all services. The sole reason for the existence of an armed force is to break things and kill people to protect the nation that formed it - therefore, combat training first, last, and always. Heinlein had it right - "Everyone works, everyone fights." There were no "non-combat" military personnel in his vision (cf. Starship Troopers - the novel, not Verhoeven's corruption of the story!) I've long thought that made sense - his force was "all teeth and no tail" - and that's the way it should be. Civilians can do logistical and support jobs that would normally be done by REMFs Technical jobs in combat areas may be filled by soldiers - but those soldiers should damn well be ready to fight, or what are they in uniform for?

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Old August 27th, 2006, 22:27
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Re: "Army makes soldiers get comfortable carrying weapons". . . actual headline.

One negligent discharge I had, was clearing a pistol. I was carrying on a daily basis, came home, popped the clip out, pulled the slide back to eject the round in the chamber, let the slide forword and pointed it into the trash can and blew papers all over the dining room. The round in the barrel failed to eject and just nicked the rim. It was an early model Browning with no clip safety. I was so used to the sequence, I just assumed the round up the snout, was laying on the chair where it always landed. I was trained to actually look into the chamber and make sure it was empty, cutting corners will bite you in the butt. Sometimes too much familiararity can cause problems.
Another (when I was sixteen), I pumped three rounds out of my shotgun getting ready to clean it in the garage. Held it at a forty five degree angle, pulled the trigger and blew a hole through the side of the garage. I never did figure out how I got four rounds in that thing. I tried several times to force three rounds into the tube, with no success. It was plugged to only hold three rounds, two in tube, one in the chamber. Again, assuming, bite me in the butt.
My last was while hunting. The sear let loose (I guess), on my Remington auto shotgun. I pumped a round into the chamber and it discharge as soon as the bolt seated. It's possible some brush was stuck in the trigger mech, a piece of sand on the bolt face or something. Only happened once, and I was never able to get it to repeat. I replaced the trigger group and the firing pin spring, just to make sure. That shotgun was pretty old and had seen a lot of use.
I've had a few rounds cook off in the barrel, after shooting a weapon till it was way too hot. I don't know if they count or not.
Most of the time it's a brain malfunction. Sometimes a mechanical malfunction. Assuming that thing is empty is always wrong.

Last edited by 8Mud; August 27th, 2006 at 22:43.
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