M-16 Rifle May Be on Way Out of U.S. Army - Arms Locker
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Old 11-23-2003, 11:58 AM   #1
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M-16 Rifle May Be on Way Out of U.S. Army

M-16 Rifle May Be on Way Out of U.S. Army
Sat Nov 22, 3:55 PM ET

By SLOBODAN LEKIC, Associated Press Writer

BAGHDAD, Iraq - After nearly 40 years of battlefield service around the globe, the M-16 may be on its way out as the standard Army assault rifle because of flaws highlighted during the invasion and occupation of Iraq (news - web sites).

U.S. officers in Iraq say the M-16A2 — the latest incarnation of the 5.56 mm firearm — is quietly being phased out of front-line service because it has proven too bulky for use inside the Humvees and armored vehicles that have emerged as the principal mode of conducting patrols since the end of major fighting on May 1.

The M-16, at nearly 40 inches, is widely considered too long to aim quickly within the confines of a vehicle during a firefights, when reaction time is a matter of life and death.

"It's a little too big for getting in and out of vehicles," said Brig. Gen. Martin Dempsey, commander of the 1st Armored Division, which controls Baghdad. "I can tell you that as a result of this experience, the Army will look very carefully at how it performed."

Instead of the M-16, which also is prone to jamming in Iraq's dusty environment, M-4 carbines are now widely issued to American troops.

The M-4 is essentially a shortened M-16A2, with a clipped barrel, partially retractable stock and a trigger mechanism modified to fire full-auto instead of three-shots bursts. It was first introduced as a personal defense weapon for clerks, drivers and other non-combat troops.

"Then it was adopted by the Special Forces and Rangers, mainly because of its shorter length," said Col. Kurt Fuller, a battalion commander in Iraq and an authority on firearms.

Fuller said studies showed that most of the combat in Iraq has been in urban environments and that 95 percent of all engagements have occurred at ranges shorter than 100 yards, where the M-4, at just over 30 inches long, works best.

Still, experience has shown the carbines also have deficiencies. The cut-down barrel results in lower bullet velocities, decreasing its range. It also tends to rapidly overheat and the firing system, which works under greater pressures created by the gases of detonating ammunition, puts more stress on moving parts, hurting its reliability.

Consequently, the M-4 is an unlikely candidate for the rearming of the U.S. Army. It is now viewed as an interim solution until the introduction of a more advanced design known as the Objective Individual Combat Weapon, or OICW.

There is no date set for the entry into service of the OICW, but officers in Iraq say they expect its arrival sooner than previously expected because of the problems with the M-16 and the M-4.

"Iraq is the final nail in the coffin for the M-16," said a commander who asked not to be identified.

The current version of the M-16 is a far cry from the original, which troops during the Vietnam War criticized as fragile, lacking power and range, and only moderately accurate. At the time, a leading U.S. weapons expert even recommended that American soldiers discard their M-16s and arm themselves with the Kalashnikov AK-47 rifle used by their Vietcong enemy.

Although the M16A1 — introduced in the early 1980s — has been heavily modernized, experts say it still isn't as reliable as the AK-47 or its younger cousin, the AK-74. Both are said to have better "knockdown" power and can take more of a beating on the battlefield.
 
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Old 12-02-2003, 09:41 AM   #2
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The M-16 and M-4 are scheduled too be replaced in 2005 by the XM-8 (M-8 once it is released).

And the XM-29 is scheduled too come out in 2008.
 
Old 03-28-2004, 12:07 PM   #3
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Not surprising as it has been there for the last 20 years!!
 
 
Old 03-28-2004, 03:12 PM   #4
 
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M-16 assault rifle? The only assaulting the M-16 did that I can remember is on it owner. The AK-47 is a far superior weapon. Atleast it was compared to the 16 I carried in the early seventies. This brings to mind a email I received not long ago. It was about how the U.S. had spent 12 Billion dollars developing a pen that would write in outer space. The Russians just used a pencil.
 
Old 04-19-2004, 08:40 PM   #5
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u r full of it. The Army aint changing

rifles in one year, and probably not in 5 years, either. The rifle just doesn't mean enough on the modern battlefield, and it has not done so since before WW1. The typical soldier can't make himself kill other men, face to face. All most of them do is fire at buidlings, vehicles, shadows, movements in the brush, flashes, etc. So the round used or the rifle that fires it mean almost nothing. They miss with 99.99% of their shots. So why spend billions of $ on what amounts to nothing in the first place, hmm?
 
Old 04-19-2004, 08:48 PM   #6
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LMAO! Unregistered u are too funny.Where's CAV?
 
Old 04-19-2004, 09:00 PM   #7
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what's funny? Established fact, son.

the troops fire many thousands of rifle rds for each casulty that is so inflicted, and most of those hits are poor ones, and they are mostly random accidents, indeed, a great many are caused by richochets, or shots fired blindly.
 
Old 04-19-2004, 09:55 PM   #8
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Whats funny is that I posted something similar a couple of months ago.Compared Vietnam enemy casualty vs rounds expended to Desert Storm same stats.Something like <5,000 during Vietnam to 200,000+ during Desert Storm.The main jist of that thread was a different topic but this did pop out there.What I really thought was funny was that this is the first time we've agreed on anything all day.
& I personally would like to add the m16 vs. anything else to my"not to be discussed on the internet because all it does is cause a fight list"of topics
 
Old 04-19-2004, 10:13 PM   #9
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If you want to take it one step farther then lets improve the current state of the art technology so that we can send robots (or whatever)into combat instead of sending live soldiers.I realize that that isn't currently practical but Its something to hope for.No more war is,I fear, to much to ask for.
BTW Clint I think that part of the purpose of the new infantry rifle will be to make soldiers more effective killers yes?Isn't there a 20mm grenade that launches out of that thing?One that electronically,through the individual soldiers determination,knows when to explode?
Well,if the m16 is too unwieldy & the m4 suffers from a loss of energy & an increase in muzzle blast doesn't it make sense to give the soldier a new weapon that works better?& if the weapon fits the soldier better then maybe the soldier builds more confidence & does their job better.Frankly I could care less how much it costs as long as it a)doesn't take forever to get in the servicemens hands & b)works.
 
Old 04-20-2004, 06:31 AM   #10
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the grenade launcher bs was never going to be issued to anyone under the rank of captain, just like no fighter jet is ever given over to such. They'd be stolen right and left, and appear in the hands of bank robbers. They were never practical in the first place. Way too heavy to lug around.
 
Old 04-20-2004, 06:35 AM   #11
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u guys suffer from huge delusions about

what the rifle MEANS on the modern battlefield. 90% of the military is not infantry. Most of the infantry is not riflemen. Most riflemen never see personal combat with the rifle. Most who do see personal combat never actually get a chance to aim and fire at the enemy. Most who do get the chance, are unable to do so. Most who do kill, face to face, are sickened by it, sometimes for life. Many who can so kill are not what you want loose in society, either. These are all reasons why the rifle means so little on the field of battle, and why it's GOOD that it's so.
 
Old 04-20-2004, 07:33 AM   #12
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Re: u guys suffer from huge delusions about

Quote:
Originally posted by Unregistered
what the rifle MEANS on the modern battlefield. 90% of the military is not infantry. Most of the infantry is not riflemen. Most riflemen never see personal combat with the rifle. Most who do see personal combat never actually get a chance to aim and fire at the enemy. Most who do get the chance, are unable to do so. Most who do kill, face to face, are sickened by it, sometimes for life. Many who can so kill are not what you want loose in society, either. These are all reasons why the rifle means so little on the field of battle, and why it's GOOD that it's so.
Whatever brand of glue you're sniffing, you've GOT to switch. You've done gone and lost it completely.

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Old 04-20-2004, 01:31 PM   #13
 
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Re: u r full of it. The Army aint changing

Quote:
Originally posted by Unregistered
rifles in one year, and probably not in 5 years, either. The rifle just doesn't mean enough on the modern battlefield, and it has not done so since before WW1. The typical soldier can't make himself kill other men, face to face. All most of them do is fire at buidlings, vehicles, shadows, movements in the brush, flashes, etc. So the round used or the rifle that fires it mean almost nothing. They miss with 99.99% of their shots. So why spend billions of $ on what amounts to nothing in the first place, hmm?
No wonder your afraid to sign your name, you must be on crack. There have been three wars and numerous police actions since WW1 in which the main weapon used by the U.S.A. was the basic rifleman. Have you watched the news lately. Those ain't airplanes walking down the streets of Iraqi cities. I don't know why I bother, you obviously know nothing about warfare or how it's fought.
 
Old 04-21-2004, 07:43 AM   #14
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u r fos. rifles didn't do crap, and you

know it. Our belt feds and artillery won ww1, ditto ww2, with the planes, and the A bomb. Infantry did almost NOTHING in the Gulf war of 1991. Fuel air bombs and smart bombs fried Hussein's tank corps, and that was that. Just because YOU are ignorant about the TINY role of the rifle in modern combat doesn't change the FACTS. The rifles in Iraq don't seem to be preventing our boys being killed every day. They don't stop the booby traps,sniping, car bombs, etc. So all they are really good for is bullying the unarmed non-combatants.
 
Old 04-21-2004, 07:44 AM   #15
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and if all 1 million active military

are assassins, what to do with them when they get OUT, dummy? Execute them as part of the deal? What an idiot.
 
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