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Army Service Rifle Upgrades

So say Stars and Stripes:

Calling it “the biggest overhaul of service rifles in nearly 50 years,” the Army soon will send Soldiers to Afghanistan with new M4A1 carbines.

Upgrades to the M4 include a more resilient barrel, ambidextrous controls and a full-automatic setting. Add better ammunition, and Soldiers will have a more lethal weapon to fight insurgents, according to Program Executive Office Soldier, which introduced the improvements.

The new carbines are expected to be integrated into the force starting next year.

21 Responses to “Army Service Rifle Upgrades”

  1. Ron W Says:

    What are “insurgents”? Would they be those who do not go along with their government and do not want the foreign combat troops they’ve brought in?

    The reason I’m asking is that I can see where I and others who insist that our government obey our Constitution, Bill of Rights AND our national sovereignity could easily be categorized as an “insurgent” at some future time.

  2. Hartley Says:

    Hmmm… If that’s “the biggest overhaul”, they sure haven’t been working on much, have they?

  3. Sigivald Says:

    Man, they just keep going back and forth on this whole “full auto or not” thing, don’t they?

    Ron W: They would literally be insurgents, since there would be no belligerent state they were part of or responsible to. The term is descriptive, not pejorative.

    A civil war against the Government (rather than, in the case of the American Civil War, between two competing governments) is an insurgency, pretty much automatically and always.

    (And re. Afghanistan, the Taliban insurgents do not just “not go along” with the Afghan government and are not motivated just by “foreign combat troops”. They’re after an Islamic theocracy on very specific grounds.

    Please don’t try and make them sound like some sort of anti-Colonial independence movement, because they aren’t that.)

  4. Ron W Says:


    Not defending them, but I can see certain undesirable American citizens being classified as such. Another synonymous trem is “militia” which happens to be teh Constitutional term that defines our armed citizenry.

    Besides the “insurgents” in Afghanistan cannot threaten us UNLESS treasonous elements in our own government allow and even facilitate coomunities which support their presence in our country. Otherwise they have no military delivery systems, as does let’s say China, to threaten us UNLESS we continue an open borders policy and deliberate emigration to foster mulit-culturalism and diversity.

  5. Tam Says:

    Man, they just keep going back and forth on this whole “full auto or not” thing, don’t they?


  6. Bram Says:

    Hartley – You got it. A couple of patches on a 60-year-old design. Nothing but the best for our guys.

  7. Bram Says:

    Ha! They had to stick “Executive” into the name so the acronym wasn’t POS! !

  8. Shawn Says:

    “…Upgrades to the M4 include a more resilient barrel, ambidextrous controls and a full-automatic setting. Add better ammunition…”

    So what now? I’d like to see what is being done.

    Full auto? So now were going backwards? “Ambidextrous controls” is just a cool way of saying a two sided saftey switch. “more resilient barrel”, they’ll still melt if subjected to sustained automatic fire I bet.

    Better ammo? So what ammo? M55A1? It’s a “green” M855 so they say its better.

  9. John Smith. Says:

    The old less is more routine….

  10. Hartley Says:

    Assuming they really meant “since the M16” when they said “the last 50 years”, I would have thought the upgrades to the M16A1, M16A2 and introduction of the M4 would have been more significant than a rebarreling [and re-equipping it with rock & roll, which my M16 (no A) had in 1971].
    My feeling is they just want to have the clueless THINK they’re doing a wonderful thing for our troops, not just another patch job..

  11. Lyle Says:

    I see it as a good thing, assuming the changes are implemented well. Also; give our guys all the ammo they can possibly use, and let them practice as much as possible, anywhere possible, making entertainment out of it.

    Ron; the insurgents are currently in power in the U.S. That would make us counterinsurgents. It’s an important distinction, and I’ve been meaning to point that out for some time.

  12. Mr Evilwrench Says:

    “The insurgents” are whichever ones those in control of the media/message decide they are. I figure to be “insurgent” one of these days, though it would suit me fine not to be.

  13. Andrew Says:

    “Add better ammunition, and Soldiers will have a more lethal weapon to fight insurgents, according to Program Executive Office Soldier, which introduced the improvements.”

    How about giving them “shoot first, request permission later” rules of engagement?

  14. Chas Says:

    New rifles! Sounds like a cover-up for more stringent rules of engagement, more dead Americans and fewer dead jihadis, courtesy of the minions of the Muslim-in-Chief in the White House.
    Full auto! They’ll just get court-martialed if they pull the trigger.
    We don’t really need new rifle gimmicks, and we do not need an exit strategy. What we desperately need is a victory strategy, and we are absolutely not going to get one from that son of a Muslim in the White House.

  15. Ron W Says:

    Lyle wrote,

    “Ron; the insurgents are currently in power in the U.S. That would make us counterinsurgents.”

    Lyle, I agree.

  16. Robert Says:

    Every one of the 20+ week long SDM schools I helped teach for the USArmy had the same comment at the end of the first day on the range: “Gosh, I shot more today than I have shot in my entire enlistment!” The Army hasn’t taught anyone to shoot in several decades. They still aren’t.

    Going backwards on the hardware. Full auto will burn throats out of the new barrels, so thats a wash. New ammo that “yaws” more sounds like it’s going to shoot a washtub-sized donut at 150 meters. Ambidextrous controls: Fine.

    The New M4A1 is going to suck more than the old M4, but not as much as the carbine version of the M16A1. The 20-inch barreled M16-A2 was evidently the pinnacle of development for this rifle.

    Here’s my take: Float a 20-inch barrel inside a tube grip. Semi-auto only with a better 2-stage trigger. 77 grain ammo. Flat-topped with ACOG or other optical sight. Twist-on suppressor.

  17. wildbill Says:

    Do you think maybe marksmanship would help? Teach these men to shoot, give them an M14, and finish this crap.

  18. Ron W Says:

    Robert and wildbill,

    Have you ever thought that the ruling elite class, “the insurgents who are currently in power” of whom Lyle wrote, don’t want to “finish this crap”? According to the dictates of the CFR, who backed Bush I-Clinton and Clinton-Gore-Kerry-McCain-BushII-Obama, our military is to be used, NOT “to preserve, protect and defend the U.S. Constitution”, but as cannon fodder for the agenda of the New World Order.

    “In defense of the World Order, U.S. soldiers would have to kill and die…We are not going to achieve a new world order without paying for it in blood as well as in words and money.”– Aurthur Schlesinger, Jr., July / August ’95 Foreign Affairs – CFR’s Flagship Publication

    And here we have McCain campaign advisor and tutor to Sarah Palin cheerleading for Prez-elect, Obama:

    “The president-elect is coming into office at a moment when there is upheaval in many parts of the world simultaneously,…. But he can give new impetus to American foreign policy partly because the reception of him is so extraordinary around the world. His task will be to develop an overall strategy for America in this period when, really, a New World Order can be created. It’s a great opportunity, it isn’t just a crisis….He has appointed an extraordinarily able group of people in both the international and financial fields.” –Henry Kissinger, Jan 6, 2009, re: President-elect Obama

  19. Andrew Says:

    Ron W

    You scare the $hit out of me. We are in deep kaka.

    If any of that is true, middle America has a fight on it’s hands. And it will be bloody if we do not nip it in the bud in the next few years.

  20. Ron W Says:


    I wish it weren’t true and for the most part, the left-right, Democratic-Republican and the corporate mainstream media paradigm keeps such outta the political discussion.

    But think about it…when Bush was Prez and now with Obama, our troops are sent to Constitutionally undeclared wars in Iraq and Afghanistan while our own country is allowed to be invaded with not only illegal immigrants from Mexico, but many known OTM’s (other than Mexicans) from Islamic nations. Even NOW, parts of Arizona are OCCUPIED with Federal signs telling American citizens to KEEP OUT!

    “The Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) is the American Branch of a society which originated in England … (and) … believes NATIONAL BOUNDARIES SHOULD BE OBLITERATED and one-world rule
    established.”– Carroll Quigley (mentor of Bill Clinton by his admission), Professor of History, Georgetown University, in his book “Tragedy and Hope”.[My emphasis in ALL CAPS]

    “Once the ruling members of the CFR shadow government have decided that the U.S. Government should adopt a particular policy, the very substantial research facilities of (the) CFR are put to work to develop arguments, intellectual and emotional, to support the new policy, and to confound and discredit, intellectually and politically, any opposition.”
    — Admiral Chester Ward, former CFR member and Judge Advocate General of the U.S. Navy

  21. Paul Says:

    “Soldiers will have a more lethal weapon to fight insurgents”

    What a crock! The 5.56 has about ran out of room to become anything more than it is. Look, I say this owning TWO AR 5.56 rifles that I like quite a bit. The M4 is a CARBINE. It is not a full battle rifle even by M16 standards.

    And the full auto switch? I suspect they did that to get the trigger pull back to acceptable levels for accuracy. The 3 shot burst trigger is awful.

    Stiffer barrel? What? The M4 has a good stiff barrel already.

    What is needed, if you are going to rebarrel is the 6.8mm SPC. Do that and you will have a ‘more lethal’ rifle.

    Otherwise they are kidding themselves, getting GIs killed with the hype, and ripping off the tax payer for dough.

Remember, I do this to entertain me, not you.

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