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February 11, 2011

Army Wants More XM-25 "Punishers" For 2012

A similar article was in the sidebar the other day.

The XM-25 has been put into experimental/evaluation use in Afghanistan, and the conclusion is: It works.

The bad news, which isn't really so bad, is that their are no confirmed kills by the weapon. But the troops who use it explain that away: Look, the weapon is being used, primarily, to engage at long distances that other weapons can't hit. So we often don't know exactly who it's killing and who it's wounding.

The good news is that it seems to terminate firefights very quickly, as the Taliban quickly abandons its positions and flees. (I think then it should be dubbed "The Terminator.")

Its value then, so far, has mostly been of defensive sort of nature -- stop the bad guys from shooting, get them to flee their positions, end the fight. Without the XM-25, the Taliban would keep firing and hitting troops.

"The XM25 brought the difference to whether they would stay there 15 to 20 minutes shooting (and) taking pot shots or the actual fight ended after using the XM25," said Sgt. 1st Class Carlos Smith, Soldier Requirements Division, Maneuver Center of Excellence, Fort Benning, Ga. "That was due to the defilade capabilities of the XM25 to shoot beyond targets and behind targets."

...

"What our Soldiers have told us is, when we do fire this weapon, it does have a high probability of effect," Lehner said. "The enemy stops firing. They flee. They drag off their casualties. Essentially, a Soldier is very happy when the enemy stops firing at him."

Soldier survivability is also increased with the XM25 because it allows Soldiers to fire on the enemy from protected positions, while the enemy themselves believe they are in protected positions.

"We have increased the survivability of our Soldiers because our Soldiers no longer have to maneuver from their cover position to gain an advantageous firing spot for the enemy," Lehner said. "We are able to stay behind cover, and we welcome (the enemy) to stay behind cover -- because we'll get you."

When an article was posted about this just before it was given to the troops, there was a discussion/argument about whether the enemy would just change tactics due to this weapon (which had been hailed as a "game-changer"). It seems that they are changing tactics; they're abandoning fights much quicker when the XM-25 comes into play.

Of course that makes them less effective offensive combatants. Yes, they can run, but their aren't many ways to kill your opponent when you have your back to him and are running.

Other data indicating it's a hit: The squads designated for evaluating the weapon want to keep it, and men in the squads argue about who had the gun yesterday and who therefore gets it today.

The troops are in the best position to know what works and what doesn't. They seem to think this gun works.

One problem with putting out a lot of these: They're handmade right now. No assembly line. Just gunsmiths knocking each weapon together. Probably something we need to see about.

Thanks to Ogre Gunner.

More Details: At Kit Up!


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posted by Ace at 01:31 PM

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