Undoubtedly an AK is still an AK, when a 7.62 round tears through the flesh and shatters the bones, it’s a rare sight to see a man standing to see another day. Ever since the dawn of both the world wars, history has taught us that combat can be as far fetched as a sniper’s scope to a cluster hole as an SMG. Advancements in combat techniques aren’t possible without cutting edge weaponology, here are 7 weapons other than the iconic Kalashnikov that changed the face of combat:-
7. Glock 17
After the aftermath of World War 2 and the formation of UN, Austria had strict standards for induction of a new sidearm to replace the German Walther P38, Gaston Glock a polymer scientist was never a gun manufacturer or anywhere related to the firearms world, but amidst the rapidly increasing demands, he along with a team of camera parts manufacturers developed a sidearm using polymers. This in turn reduced both the cost and weight drastically, the weapon was sent for trials and came out undusted. Since then Glock has been a staple in sidearm market, with over 60 countries using it’s products, though there are many other variants from the Glock line of pistols but none of them can be as iconic as the Glock 17, it is highly customisable and is a favourite of law enforcement as well as military agencies.
6. M2 Browning HMG
John Browning, the legendary weapons designer dedicated his time and effort to produce a masterpiece of fine machinery which is still in use. The 50 Cal. M2 is a HMG (Heavy Machinegun) that fires 50BMG rounds, now these rounds mean serious business. Capable of tearing through lightly armoured vehicles and low flying aircrafts, the M2 is a versatile weapon. One notable fact is that the M2 is the smallest anti aircraft gun as well. Since it’s genesis in 1918 it is probably the oldest machinegun still present in service. Having seen the Second World War, the Korean War, Vietnam War, Iraq War, The War in Afghanistan, Mexican Drug War and countless conflicts, it is a battle tested weapon that stands the test of time. It’s a patriot that never grows old.
5. FN FAL
The quote “The right arm, for the free world” best suits the battle rifle, an unsung hero left to rust in those grizzly corners of war. FN, the creator of this weapon kept a peacekeeping formula of updating the free world from the older Bolt Action configured rifles such as the Enfield Mk3. to a flexible rifle that could switch between fire modes. It was a design ahead if it’s time, the primary rounds to be used were the experimental .208 British rounds but the Americans pushed for more power hence the .308 Winchester were used. The problem however was reported in it’s large frame and notorious weight. Even after being replaced nearly in a short span of time, it is still present in numerous countries with law enforcement agencies. FN FAL, is a man stopper, a weapon forgotten but still in operation.
The “Machinepistole 40” or the MP 40 was the premiere SMG (Sub Machinegun) used by Nazi Germany during the second world war, it’s stamped metal work made it reliable against all odds, after watching it’s inception in 1938, the weapon was used extensively by the paratroopers, squad leaders and tank crews. During the Battle of Stalingrad, the MP40 was the only thing keeping the Soviet army at bay as they charged with their PPSHs. The Allies however called this weapon “Schmeisser” although Hugo Schmeisser wasn’t involved in the development process. It used a telescopic firing pin which reduced the recoil significantly. Even after the Second World War, it still saw action in the Korean War and Vietnam War. This battle tested application was widely appreciated even by the Allies who captured them from surrendered or dead soldiers.
3. Colt M1911
Or probably known as Colt .45, is a sidearm which has been in service since 1911 and still continues to be a favourite of Special Forces, the 7 round box magazine contains .45 ACP (Automatic Colt Pistol) rounds which are subjected to comparisons with it’s notorious counterpart, the 9mm Parabellum round. During the trails in the early days of development, the weapon saw no jamming and successfully fired 6000 rounds hence becoming the primary sidearm of the US Army, it saw action in both the World Wars, Vietnam War, Korean War and still continues to serve well with law enforcement agencies. Although the weapon has been replaced from most of the units with Beretta M9, some Special Forces units still stick to this handy weapon. It is widely used in competitive shooting now a days. The M1911 is a classic in every way possible, a weapon that is too stubborn to die.
2. Gewehr 98
The Mauser Gewehr 98 was a state of the art weapon of it’s time, hitting the world in 1898, this 7.92×57mm bolt action rifle is the most widely copied and adopted design, one can see it’s relevance in other platforms like the Enfield, Springfield 03, Arisaka and many more. Though it saw usage until 1935, it’s shorter version Kar 98 or Karabiner 98K saw extensive usage in World War 2 and was the basic infantry weapon. It’s bolt cycle is smooth as butter and the accuracy is all time high. No wonder this weapon is an all time favourite of competitive marksmen as iron sights provide an effective range of 500m while optics might add another 300 to the former. The Gewehr 98 is a man stopper, a revolutionary weapon and an all time favourite.
Eugene Stoner’s masterpiece, the Armalite M16 is an assault rifle which works on a gas operates rotating bolt, it has seen extensive service in Vietnam War, Gulf War and still continues to serve well, though it has been replaced by it’s shorter version the M4A1, it was because of the M16s revolutionary design that many assault rifles to this day still incorporate. It is also the most used firearm after the AK 47. It can be tailored to the users needs, one can attach optical sights, flashlights, lasers, a pistol grip, extended magazines, suppressor, a bipod and even a bayonet. It’s the most flexible platform and is still in effective use today. Not to forget are it’s additional features like one can attach a M203 grenade launcher and a shotgun too. The M16 feeds on 5.56mm NATO rounds, the effective firing range is between 500 to 550m and can vary as per the optical foresights attached. It is a devastating weapon which can mould itself according to the surroundings. The M16 is a war veteran and surely will be till the end.