Archive for June, 2009

Hot Crew! : Tactical Corset?

Posted in army life, guns, HOOAH!, rankers, tech pron, Uncategorized, War On Terror with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on 16, June 2009 by chockblock

The Army is testing new body armor. However another company has something for the ladies:


It’s the toast of Mentioned in boing-boing and Instapundit is taken by it.

It’s Palin! Get her! AGAIN!

Posted in politcs, rankers, War On Terror with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 16, June 2009 by chockblock

So Sarah Palin lost the election, she should be done right?

Wrong. It seems that she won’t go gently into the night. First, she works with government and industry to have a new pipeline built in her state.

ANCHORAGE, Alaska – June 11, 2009 – TransCanada Corporation (TSX, NYSE: TRP) (TransCanada) today announced that TransCanada and ExxonMobil have reached an agreement to work together on an Alaska gas pipeline.

She warned us about the current administration’s approach to the economy.

What does she get? Some old dude on the tv joking about having her 14-year old daughter raped. Letterman has no shame, he dodges and evades when taken to task over his slimy remarks. He may even be losing a sponsor because of it.

Why does the left hate strong women? Conservative women stand for something and they get treated like dirt. Sarah Palin is no exception. But she won’t back down. None of us will.

Real women don’t hide behind their gender or race. Real women and men draw a line in the sand and say “NO MORE!”. None of this “we must understand” crap. They are not victims and don’t need anyone to speak for them. The left is full of victims. The victim is always repressed. The victim says “Walk all over me, my pain makes me special.” Because Sarah Palin and others refuse to be victims, the attacks and hatred flow from the “reality based community”.

234 Years of the U.S. Army

Posted in ADA, army life, army training, HOOAH!, politcs, rankers, War On Terror with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 14, June 2009 by chockblock

Born out of the smoke from Lexinton, Concord and Breed’s Hill, the U.S. Army has fought to defend American liberties even before there was an America. In 1775 the men who battled against a disciplined British army were little more than a rabble. By comparison, today’s soldiers are without peer – their capabilities and performance are unmatched in the history of the world. But these two armies, separated by 234 years, share a common trait – their soldiers all volunteered to serve their country. — Militarytimes

A real stolen election: Iran in 2009

Posted in politcs, rankers, War On Terror with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 14, June 2009 by chockblock

I was in Florida in 2000 and was there for the debacle over the vote count. Ever since then, we have had to put up with the “George Bush stole the election” crap from the left. They disregarded the legal process and the fact that he won re-election in 2004.

Now the Islamic Republic of Iran has had an “election’. In reality, the thugs Mullahs who run the country select who they want to be Iran’s president. President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad does a victory dance, the opposition cries foul.

But for those who dreamed of a gentler Iran, Saturday was a day of smoldering anger, crushed hopes and punctured illusions, from the streets of Tehran to the policy centers of Western capitals.

Iranians who hoped for a bit more freedom, a better managed economy and a less reviled image in the world wavered between protest and despair on Saturday. —Reverberations as Door Slams on Hope of Change, NY Times.

Was there ever any doubt? Riots, street battles between the police and opposition and even cut communications. I do like the NY Times “Hope of change” headline. It just shows how out of touch the left is.

The current regime came to power after years of street battles, riots and demonstrations. They can smell when the populace is turning against them. The urban population has always looked to the west, while the poorer rural population swallowed the revolution hook line and sinker. They are the ones most eager to “martyr” themselves for the mullahs.

I see no good coming from this. The mullahs will do what ever they can to keep power. When religion and politics ride in the same cart, the driver never gives up the reigns. They don’t want another revolution, they’ll wind up like the Shah. This election was sham from the beginning:

As a result, Iranian elections are much more about style than about substance. There’s a tendency among analysts to amplify differences, but when it comes to key U.S. policy concerns: Iran’s nuclear ambitions, violent opposition to the Middle East peace process, and support for terrorism, there are none. Remember, that it was under “pragmatist” President ‘Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani and “reformist” President Mohammad Khatami that the Islamic Republic not only built up its nuclear capability but also, according to the 2007 National Intelligence Estimate, experimented with warhead design.

The last thing to remember is that the real power in the Islamic Republic rests with the Office of the Supreme Leader, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and, in the economic sphere, with the Revolutionary Foundations.
Eye on Iran : National Review June 11, 2009.

While the right saw through the smoke and mirrors, the left was like a deer in the headlights:

American neoconservatives have often used the presidency of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to bolster their case for aggressive action against Iran. So the assumption might be that they would be rooting for Iranians to take care of the problem themselves by electing reformer Mir Hossein Mousavi in today’s vote.–Right-Wing Neocons Rooting For Ahmadinejad Win, Rachel Weiner, The Huffington Post

This would matter if there was a difference between the two candidates. There isn’t one on the issues that count.
The foreign press gets it:

Under the headline, “Right-Wing Neocons Rooting For Ahmadinejad Win,” Rachel Weiner wrote that neocons are: “rooting for the anti-American bogeyman to stay in power.”

She stretched a point Daniel Pipes made about Ahmadinejad waking up Europe to the seriousness of the Iranian threat.

Let us review. In 2003, President Bush identified Iran, Iraq and North Korea as an “Axis of Evil,” which the left scoffed at. Iran and North Korea have no connection, they argued.

6 years later, we see the connection between their two nuke programs daily. North Korea is helping Iran acquire nuke capabilities and of course, Kim Jong-Il now has a nuke.– Dumping Ahmadinejad on the neocons, Don Surber, UK (h/t: Stop The ACLU)

Mr. Surber p0wns the left on several points, chief of which is that they embrace any dictator who claims to stand against the west (read America). They even lavish praise on tyrants who murder their own people and start bloody wars. Yes I know the US has supported brutal regimes, but we question those decisions and the left protests our support for them. Question the left’s support for Iran and you get this:

Other neocons, worried a shift in power will signal a fresh start relations with Iran, are already deflating a Mousavi win. The same pundits who constantly point out Ahmadinejad’s Holocaust denial, anti-Semitism, and nuclear ambitions as reasons to confront Iran now argue that the president doesn’t matter.

Mrs. Weiner, does it hurt when you contort logic like that? The real power is the the mad mullahs who see war with Israel and the west as a holy crusade (no matter how many innocent civilians on all sides die). And that is why Iran’s election was stolen.

Replacing the M-16: another look at the HK-416

Posted in ADA, army life, army training, guns, HOOAH!, tech pron, Uncategorized, War On Terror with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 12, June 2009 by chockblock


The HK-416 and 417 are evolved versions of the M-16. Heckler and Koch replaced the direct impingement system with a short stroke piston at the behest of U.S. Army Delta Force members. Delta Force worked witht he gunmaker to design this weapon. A pistion system was chosen because:

…This design prevents combustion gases from entering the weapon’s interior, a short-coming with direct impingement systems. The reduction in heat and fouling of the bolt carrier group increases the reliability of the weapon and extends the interval between stoppages. It also reduces operator cleaning time and stress on critical components.

The HK416 is equipped with a proprietary accessory rail forearm with MIL-STD-1913 rails on all four sides. This allows most current accessories, used on M4/M16-type weapons, to be fitted to the HK416. The HK416 rail forearm can be installed and removed without tools by using a bolt locking lug as the screwdriver. The rail forearm is of the ‘free-float’ variety; it does not contact the barrel and improves accuracy.

The HK416’s barrel is cold hammer-forged with a 20,000 round service life. The cold hammer-forging process provides a stronger barrel for greater safety in case of an obstructed bore or for extended firing sessions. This includes “OTB” (Over-the-beach) capability; the HK416 can be safely fired after being submerged in water and not completely drained.
Wikipedia: HK-416

So far the following countries/units have adopted it:

Turkish official with the Mehmetçik-1/HK-416

Turkish official with the Mehmetçik-1/HK-416

  1. French Air Force and Army Special Operations Units
  2. German GSG9 and KSK units.
  3. Netherlands Army special forces unit Korps Commandotroepen
  4. Norway
  5. Poland: GROM
  6. Turkish Army as the Mehmetçik-1
  7. United States: Army’s Delta Force (1st Special Forces Operational Detachment-Delta), various other United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) units and formerly, the US Army’s Asymmetric Warfare Group. The latter has since had to turn in their HK416s.[17] It is also in use with various elite law enforcement units, such as the United States Capitol Police SWAT

Turkey had to replace its HK G3 rifles, Poland had M-16/M-4 style weapons it bought from American companies.
While other countries have already replaced their M-16 style weapons with the 416, the US Army has a standoffish attitude toward this weapon. The Army’s Asymmetric Warfare Group was forced to turn in their 416’s. Army leadership has stood by the M-16/M-4 calling it the “warfighter’s choice”. However poor performance in a dust test caused the Army to hold open competitions for a possible new rifle.

HK416 Gas regulator

HK416 Gas regulator

As the debate rages over replacing the M-16, some reports have come in about the performance of the HK-416. The Firearm Blog quotes a Norwegian soldier’s problems with the rifle. The gas regulator flips between setting for a suppressor and normal by itself, the rifle cannot take temperature and humidity changes well. That’s really bad for an arctic country.

There are even reports that HK has suspended production because of other combat malfunctions.

Like the FN-SCAR, time will tell whether this is a temporary problem or will dog the 416 like the M-16’s early bugs.

Air Defense History: Talos, Terrier and the Standard Missile

Posted in ADA, army life, army training, guns, HOOAH!, rankers, tech pron, Uncategorized, War On Terror with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 11, June 2009 by chockblock

At the close of WW II, the Empire of Japan sent suicide planes at US Navy ships in a desperate attempt to stop the war. While aircraft and AAA stopped many kamikaze aircraft, the Navy wanted a surefire defense against hostile aircraft.

RIM-8 Talos test firing

RIM-8 Talos test firing

Operation Bumblebee developed and tested US Navy ramjet missiles at the end of World War II. The Applied Physics Lab PTV-N-4 Cobra/BTV was flown in October 1945,[1] and the program developed the operational RIM-8 Talos missile.

The Talos missile was the first US naval surface to air missile. However, due to technology at the time, it was huge. At 11.6 meters, it was 1.5 meters shorter than the Soviet MiG-15’s that is was designed to shoot down. The ships that carried the missile were: three converted Cleveland class light cruisers (USS Oklahoma City, Galveston, and Little Rock), and the converted Baltimore class heavy cruisers Albany, Chicago, Columbus and the nuclear-powered USS Long Beach. It was large, bulky and expensive, but Chicago and Long Beach shot down three Migs in Vietnam. Like Nike, there was a nuclear armed version of the missile. When the Long Beach was decommissioned in 1979, the missile was phased out.

As the 1950’s went on, the Talos was complemented by the Convair RIM-2 Terrier:
Continue reading

Replacing the M-16: the FN SCAR makes it’s debut

Posted in army life, army training, guns, HOOAH!, rankers, tech pron, Uncategorized, War On Terror with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 10, June 2009 by chockblock

One of the most popular posts here is my take on the M-16 debate. The FN SCAR (SOF Combat Assault Rifle) has been issued to the 1st Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment. On’s forms, here is what a real world operator thinks about the rile (H/T: the Firearm Blog):

FN SCAR, from Wikipedia

FN SCAR, from Wikipedia

I am being issued a S.C.A.R. …..Review posted PG 1
– Accuracy
We only used military issued, 62 grn for the MK16 and 147 grn for the MK17.
25 meters (prone, supported).
MK16, iron sights or eotech, groups were no larger than 1/4″.
MK17, iron sights: 1/4″, Elcan 4X: 1/8″ (the rounds were usually through the same hole)
The scope of this initial test did not include shooting for groups on paper past 25M.
We did however engage pop-up targets out to 900M.

The accuracy of the rifle was very acceptable.

Some shooters routinely made hits @ 900M w/ the MK17 w/ 4X optic. I got lucky occasionally.

– Gas system

The gas system has two positions: suppressed and normal.
The selector knob is sturdy and easy to manipulate.
It must be removed to access the piston. It is not difficult to remove the knob.

I liked it more than I thought I would. I am confident that the weapon functions reliably.
It is comfortable to handle and shoot.

hit the link for more.

In a recent dust test the following happened (

  1. XM8: 127 stoppages.
  2. MK16 SCAR Light: 226 stoppages.
  3. 416: 233 stoppages.
  4. M4: 882 stoppages.

Another take on the rifle comes from “Are the FN SCAR Weapons (MK16 and MK17) Necessary? And do we really need to replace the Colt M4/M4A1 Carbine?

So, does SOCOM really need the FN SCAR MK16 and MK17 weapons? Probably not. The fact is, while the SCAR family might potentially provide modularity and production cost advantages over the long term if SCAR is eventually adopted and it replaced all the weapons listed above that it’s intended to replace, it doesn’t offer any lethality advantages whatsoever over any of the already-fielded, combat tested and proven weapons it was designed and developed to replace. The SCAR weapons simply aren’t revolutionary in any way with regard to combat capability and effectiveness. If anything, they’re more of an interim-level/bridging-the-gap solution until somone develops a truly revolutionary replacement for our currently-fielded weapons.

Who is right? Even the positive review from the “special forces” operator had some misgivings. Time will tell. Much ink was spilled back int he 1960’s to tar the M-16. Today many accuse the M-4 of pretty much the same thing. A new rifle is needed, but what kind? More information will pour in as these rifles are used on the battlefield.

Rangers from 1st Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment, honored for their service during the Coca Cola 600 NASCAR

Rangers from 1st Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment, honored for their service during the Coca Cola 600 NASCAR

BTW it comes in a civilian version too, some even in gold!