I have read the article about the M-468 machine gun. I believe it is a superior firearm in terms of ease of integration into the US military inventory. Also the lethality with the new 6.8×43 round to be used with it. Those of you who read history in terms of US military small arms may remember that General Douglas McArthur wanted a rifle that would shoot the 30.06 since the US had millions of crates of it in storage. That is how Garand won the contract with the M-1 since his rifle did chamber the 30.06 round while the contenders were using other type rounds.
It sounds like a great replacement for the M-16 and the sole consideration in selecting the replacement should be what is best for the troops and not what is best for the bean counters. If this increased stopping power saves one American life what value do we place on that life if we stay with the 5.56 mm and lose that life so it fits into some neat budget of someone who will not be in harms way.
I hope the armed services accept the m-468 as the primary weapon. Shoot to wound is the most redidiculous statement ever made by any military, ever. The purpose of the military is to kill the enemy. I thought the 7.56 was bad, the 5.56 was worse. I don’t think any enemy we have, has a shoot to wound philosophy. I’m glad our defense dept is looking to upgrade our weapons. I was quite impressed by its lethality and transitional ease. We do need a more lethal round than the 5.56mm NATO round that we use today. I as an individual soldier would like to see the U.S. Army and the military as a whole convert to this M-468.
The article also added the reality check in there about the U.S. military having millions of 5.56mm in stock. My answer would simply be this in that we would still have use for the 5.56mm round due to the fact that we still have the M-249 S.A.W. in our inventories. We could get the rounds converted into drum ammunition for that purpose. Then again what would the cost be? That is what it unfortunately boils down to. Not saving soldier’s lives on the battlefield but what does it cost and what amount of effort has to go into it.
The M-468 sounds like a great upgrade to the basic infantryman’s needs. Proven technology, and small upgrades in foreshock and sir, main problem is going to be retooling to a 6.8 round. But considering how much a Y-22 airsupiriority plane costs, I think the cost is minimal, just cut one plane and you got all the money you need to retool. Also why do we need such a high tech toy when most of today’s conflicts are infantry necessities.
The issue in general with the 5.56x45mm ball ammo (whether the original 55 grain or the newer 62 grain SS109 projectile) isn’t so much a question of velocity (which is superior) or ballistic coefficient (which is adequate) but of bullet construction…it is ‘ball’ or full metal jacket ammunition, designed not to expand. If it is truly the philosophy of the US military to “shoot to kill” then stop piddling around with changing calibers and allow some decent, expanding bullets to be issued. Supposedly these bullets are not allowed by the Geneva Convention, which is madness…if it is “legal” to shoot the enemy then it should be “legal” to use properly designed ammunition.
The current M4 round makes a neat .223 caliber hole in the target and keeps on going. The suggested 6.8x43mm will make a nice .270 hole and keep going. The idea is to have a bullet that expands and transfers all of its energy to the target, not one that punches little holes. I guarantee the shot/kill ratio would improve significantly…and it’s a hell of a lot cheaper than adopting a whole new weapons system.