Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Excerpts From Jeff Cooper's Final Column...

"Our current US state of training in smallarms continues to decline. Poor as it was, it continues to get worse. We have people now who have no idea what a shooting sling is for - and this is for instructors, not just the troops at large! We have in possession a Boy Scout training manual dated from about 1937 which sets up an excellent standard for the individual rifleman. Dismal as this may seem, our currently standard poodle shooter is not much to work with, but we can do better than that, provided the need to do so is established. We get back some pretty fair sniper examples, but on the other hand, shooting after dark in short range urban situations does not offer us much of a goal for which to strive. Apparently today's infantry action is a matter of short range, high-explosive bomb-throwing. Not all outfits are the same, of course, and we get different strokes from different folks, much to our annoyance. "

Jeff was of course absolutely correct in lamenting the decline of the military sling. What the Colonel never seemed to understand was the fact that today's armed services have to be politically correct with their weaponry, and female as well as smallish male Colonel's who desire to be Generals need smaller guns and ammo to become and remain proficient shooters. Large framed men often have a difficult time coming to grips with the fact that not all soldiers, sailors and Marines are large framed men, hence the need for the poodle-shooter, or M-16. None of this explains why the shooting sling is out of favor everywhere save for the Marine Corps, except to guess the pain that a tight-loop-sling must inflict upon a sissy. Big weapons kill big, recoil big, and until the advent of a Star Trekian phaser there is no getting around the fact that in order to destroy an opponent, one must employ the largest weapon that can be handled with a high degree of accuracy. And a tight-loop-sling is the most accurate way to shoot a rifle.

And I'm certian that the Colonel was speaking tongue in cheek when he offered that "today's infantry action is a matter of short range, high-explosive bomb-throwing."

The house to house fighting all over Iraq is hardly just bomb-throwing, but the Colonel was never an infantryman who had to kill a dozen men a week on average, so who really knows from whence these ideas made it into his head.

I'll toss in whatever else is being said about the Colonel as I come upon it.

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