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Postby JTWood » Wed Mar 16, 2005 1:04 am

blankman wrote:
JTWood wrote:
DieHardCubbie wrote:
JTWood wrote: but I was in its militant wing - The United States Army. :-D
.....

I've never been trained in pistols,


WOW....I am not being facetious at all in saying this...but the Army doesn't train you in the use of a pistol.....that really stikes me as odd.... :-o

Only officers and MPs use pistols. Most other general enlisted personnel only use rifles, grenades, etc.

Pretty standard stuff, really.


Don't you have a secondary weapon though in case something happens to your rifle?

Bayonette. Seriously.
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Postby GiantFan666 » Wed Mar 16, 2005 7:44 am

Yeah... I'm gonna have to agree w/ the conspiracy theorists on this one... .40 caliber close to point blank range I think there is going to be more than a limp... I hit a finger w/ a hammer and I'm cussing up a blue streak, but shooting myself in the leg? yeah.. to quote Chris Rock... "Here, put some Robitussin on it... that's right, let the Robitesum sink in there." I don't think so!!!!
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Postby JTWood » Wed Mar 16, 2005 9:01 am

GiantFan666 wrote:Yeah... I'm gonna have to agree w/ the conspiracy theorists on this one... .40 caliber close to point blank range I think there is going to be more than a limp... I hit a finger w/ a hammer and I'm cussing up a blue streak, but shooting myself in the leg? yeah.. to quote Chris Rock... "Here, put some Robitussin on it... that's right, let the Robitesum sink in there." I don't think so!!!!

I scoured Snopes and TruthOrFiction.com before I posted the vid, and neither have word one about it. So I'm believing it until I hear otherwise.

I also sent the vid to those sites to see if they would look into its veracity. I doubt they will, but at least I'm being proactive.

:-)
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Postby blankman » Wed Mar 16, 2005 12:59 pm

JTWood wrote:
blankman wrote:
JTWood wrote:
DieHardCubbie wrote:
JTWood wrote: but I was in its militant wing - The United States Army. :-D
.....

I've never been trained in pistols,


WOW....I am not being facetious at all in saying this...but the Army doesn't train you in the use of a pistol.....that really stikes me as odd.... :-o

Only officers and MPs use pistols. Most other general enlisted personnel only use rifles, grenades, etc.

Pretty standard stuff, really.


Don't you have a secondary weapon though in case something happens to your rifle?

Bayonette. Seriously.


That was my next guess and I entirely believe you. I just think it would be worthwhile to issue a more useful and safe close quarter secondary weapon.

Perhaps its just the video game player in me that thinks you should have a pistol. I know that in a game like Far Cry, I use the pistol just as much as my M4. The pistol is a mighty powerful Deagle though :-°

Having served, perhaps you could tell me whether you think having a pistol would be a) useful b) worth the cost to taxpayers. I'd be curious to hear your opinion ;-D
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Postby StlSluggers » Wed Mar 16, 2005 1:21 pm

To be 100% honest, I don't believe I can give a full answer to that question, but I will give it my best effort. I was an electrician in the Reserves. I barely had one year of active duty in 8 years combined. I can say that we were trained in defensive tactics, given that we were going to be stationed in supporting positions no where near the front line. If I were involved in urban warfare as is so prevelant now, I would definitely be interested in having a pistol because of the cramped quarters. But that's really the job of Special Forces and the Marines. The Army, in general, does not engage the enemy in those surroundings, so a pistol would be pretty worthless.

I will point out one other benefit to the rifle that may not be too well known. The M-16 round is considered to be a non-lethal round, in the short term. It's a small-calibre, low-velocity round when compared to traditional assault rifles. The result is that the round enters the body and bounces around instead of exiting. The internal retention of the round causes damage that will most likely result in death, but in the short term, it simply results in an incapacitated soldier.

The reason this weapon is designed this way is two-fold:
  1. If the wounded enemy is incapacitated, it takes at least one other person to care for that soldier. In effect, you've doubled your "kill" total.
  2. If the soldier is left to die, he will live long enough to face interrogation when captured alive at a later time.
I mention this because pistols are traditionally used as lethal weapons (again, speaking in the short term). A pistol-carrying soldier is strictly less efficient than a rifle-carrying soldier using the criteria laid out above.

As for the cost, I spent 6 of the 8 weeks I was in Basic Training on being trained with my M-16. This involves more than simply shooting the weapon. You have to learn how to care for the weapon and how to use it in combat situations. The cost to upgrade all soldiers to both rifle and pistol users would be extraordinary in terms of time and training alone.
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Postby blankman » Wed Mar 16, 2005 2:28 pm

StlSluggers wrote:To be 100% honest, I don't believe I can give a full answer to that question, but I will give it my best effort. I was an electrician in the Reserves. I barely had one year of active duty in 8 years combined. I can say that we were trained in defensive tactics, given that we were going to be stationed in supporting positions no where near the front line. If I were involved in urban warfare as is so prevelant now, I would definitely be interested in having a pistol because of the cramped quarters. But that's really the job of Special Forces and the Marines. The Army, in general, does not engage the enemy in those surroundings, so a pistol would be pretty worthless.

I will point out one other benefit to the rifle that may not be too well known. The M-16 round is considered to be a non-lethal round, in the short term. It's a small-calibre, low-velocity round when compared to traditional assault rifles. The result is that the round enters the body and bounces around instead of exiting. The internal retention of the round causes damage that will most likely result in death, but in the short term, it simply results in an incapacitated soldier.

The reason this weapon is designed this way is two-fold:
  1. If the wounded enemy is incapacitated, it takes at least one other person to care for that soldier. In effect, you've doubled your "kill" total.
  2. If the soldier is left to die, he will live long enough to face interrogation when captured alive at a later time.
I mention this because pistols are traditionally used as lethal weapons (again, speaking in the short term). A pistol-carrying soldier is strictly less efficient than a rifle-carrying soldier using the criteria laid out above.

As for the cost, I spent 6 of the 8 weeks I was in Basic Training on being trained with my M-16. This involves more than simply shooting the weapon. You have to learn how to care for the weapon and how to use it in combat situations. The cost to upgrade all soldiers to both rifle and pistol users would be extraordinary in terms of time and training alone.


Point taken, and that bit about the M-16 is very, very interesting. Thank you very much.

I guess I am unaware of what each specific branch of the military does. For example, the soldiers you see on TV in Iraqi cities, generally with rifles, are they part of the Army? And the people that go into buildings to take down targets, are those Special Forces or Marines? Perhaps if you have the time, you could enlighten me about what kind of jobs each of these groups would be doing.
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Postby StlSluggers » Wed Mar 16, 2005 3:21 pm

No problem. The Army generally has two missions: Large-scale offensives and occupation. The Marines are a shock unit designed to be used in highly tactical battles (note that I didn't use the word "war"). Obviously, the Navy and Air Force are designed to support the Army in large-scale offensives and occupation by providing the vehicular support that cannot be achieved by mobile land forces.

However, each branch needs to be able to deal with special circumstances because each war is not the same. The Army has a ton of Special Forces units, the most popular of which is the Army Rangers. You might remember them from Blackhawk Down. The Navy has the S.E.A.L.S. There other units, too, that serve different puposes, but I won't go into detail about who they are. What's important is what they do.

These units are designed for localized battles with specific purposes in mind. Urban warfare is right up the Marines alley, but the S.E.A.L.S. and the Rangers are trained in similar tactics, too. The war in Iraq is very unique in the history of war because it is a surgical, urban mission combined with a traditional land offensive.

In the past, we would have simply gone in to Iraq with the Army, Navy, and Air Force, bombed the hell out of every major supporting city, and then occupied the country until we could establish supreme control. We cannot do that this time because this is a war for the very civilians that tactic would kill. So we have to be very careful in the cities. This means that the general Army is not directly involved in much of the war.

When you are watching television, you are seeing the best of the best of all of the branches, plus the Marines. The Army has become a supporting unit for those troops. What you don't see is the stuff that goes on outside of the cities. There are numerous mortar attacks on each Army-occupied, supporting military installation each day. The Army is well equipped to deal with them because there are very few civilians around. They can take a couple helicopters, tanks, and a Company of troops and go out and blanket a mountainside with fire. That's what the Army is good at, and that is why you are seeing them in the urban battles on television.

I hope that is what you were looking for, and hope that I was able to explain that in a way that makes sense.
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Postby blankman » Wed Mar 16, 2005 5:17 pm

That does help a lot Stl. Thanks. Yet another question :-o , how are people chosen for Special Forces, S.E.A.L.S., Rangers etc.? Are they hand picked from the Army/Navy and asked to train for these groups or do people simply "sign up" and have to pass some tests?
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Postby StlSluggers » Wed Mar 16, 2005 5:23 pm

Special Forces are considered "schools" in the military. You have to apply to get in to the "school". If you're accepted, you are allowed to go to their try out event. Whatever organization it is puts you through hell for a few weeks - or even months - and then makes selections based on who ever is left. People are asked to join, too, but they cannot make you join, and either way, you still have to go through the "school".
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Postby DaQ » Thu Mar 17, 2005 10:15 am

That's crazy lol...

Apparently, some of my friends that saw it thought it was no big deal... they're like, "so?"

It could have been intentional just because the guy didn't really appear to be hurt and he was so calm, but if it was accidental, :-D :-D
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