Thoughts on the military and military activities of a diverse nature. Free-ranging and eclectic.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Designated Marksman I.

This is coolbert:

Designated Marksman [DM]

Here is a surprising concept that seems to have become vogue. Seen as NOW being an absolute necessity by the U.S. military? A concept that only until a few years ago, would have been thought to be not needed. A concept even passe' and outdated!?

[modern armies for the most part rely upon VOLUME OF FIRE to overwhelm the opposition. Accuracy is secondary, VOLUME is primary!]

The Designated Marksman [DM]!

"The DM's role is to supply rapid accurate fire on enemy targets at ranges up to 800 meters (875 yd) with a highly-accurate semiautomatic rifle equipped with a telescopic sight. Like snipers, DM's are trained in quick and precise shooting, but unlike the more specialised 'true' sniper, they are also intended to lay down accurate rapid fire."

Accurate, long-range, repetitive fire on enemy targets by MARKSMEN!

The DM differs from the traditional sniper in that he:

* "Designated marksmen are integral members of regular infantry squads or platoons, much like machine-gunners or grenadiers"

* "DM's are usually equipped with accurized battle rifles or assault rifles"

* "DM's are mainly employed for targets at ranges of up to 800 meters (875 yd)."

* "DM's usually change positions with their squad, and may have more camouflage gear than other infantrymen."

To satisfy the demand that the DM be able to provide accurate and repetitive fire at long range on a target, a SEMIAUTOMATIC rifle is A MUST! The USMC has decided that an improved version of the NOW somewhat ancient U.S. M-14 rifle is the way to go!

"The United States Marine Corps Designated Marksman Rifle (DMR, NSN 1005-01-458-6235; more formally the United States Rifle, 7.62-MM, M14, DMR is a semi-automatic, gas-operated rifle chambered for the 7.62x51mm NATO cartridge. It is a modified and accurized version of the M14 rifle built and utilized solely by the United States Marine Corps (USMC)."

[the U.S. Army has also adopted the concept of the DM, but has decided to use an improved version of the M-16 as it's DMR! Obviously commonality of ammunition here is a major issue. A Marine DM will carry ammo that is different from what the rest of his squad/platoon carries. An Army DM will not!!]

"The DMR, as its name suggests, is primarily used by a designated marksman. The DMR fills the need for a lightweight, accurate weapon system utilizing a cartridge more powerful than the M16A4's standard 5.56x45mm NATO—the 7.62x51mm NATO."

The above photo shows the sniper version of the M-14 from the Vietnam era. Was used in Vietnam by U.S. forces as a sniper rifle, but sparingly so!?

The basic version M-14 has been modified extensively and IMPROVED to satisfy the demands for a long-range, heavy caliber, accurate, SEMIAUTOMATIC rifle as needed by the DM.

Improvements to include:

* Barrel: "A 22-inch (560 mm) stainless steel, match grade barrel."

* Stock: "fiberglass stock. . . . a pistol grip and a buttstock with adjustable saddle cheekpiece."

* Optics: "a rather large variety of military scopes and imaging devices . . . day scopes . . . night vision scopes . . . fixed power scopes."

* Muzzle device: "Most . . . utilize the traditional M14 muzzle device . . . since deployment in 2001, some DMRs are now equipped with [a] 2-port muzzle brake . . . threaded and collared to accept a . . . sound suppressor."

* "Bipod: "A . . . bipod is used"

Other nations, too, have seen the need for the DM in the role of providing accurate, rapid, and long range fire is support of the basic infantry squad/platoon. Israel for instance!

"The Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) implemented significant changes to sharpshooting doctrine in the 1990s . . . A major change was the introduction of a new battle profession – the designated marksman [DM] (קלע סער, 'kala saar' in Hebrew) – intended to improve the accuracy and firepower of an infantry platoon and compromise between the role of a sniper and an assault rifleman"

Designated marksman. Just a few years ago, who would have thought!!??




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