10540966654_b4a5dba84a_c
U.S. Army leaders told lawmakers today that the service will have to spend less on live-fire maneuver training as a result of the deep cuts to defense spending under sequestration.

Service leaders have been warning Congress for months that these cuts are forcing the Army to cut readiness training. A slightly clearer explanation of what cutting readiness training will mean to combat units emerged during a March 27 hearing before the House Appropriations Committee’s Defense Subcommittee.

“It has come to my attention … that in our budget in the area of marksmanship training for our personnel, both active and Guard, that the funding is being reduced by about 60 percent,” Rep Marcy Kaptur, D-Ohio, who represents the Ohio Army National Guard’s Camp Perry Joint Training Center, told senior Army officials.

“I would hope that if there were that type of serious cutbacks that you might take a look at the ability of our forces to train properly and to do what is necessary to provide them with those skills.”

Army Chief of Staff Gen. Odierno confirmed that marksmanship training is being cut but not at individual and small-unit levels.
“There has been no reduction in individual and squad-level marksmanship training – that’s funded,” he said. “Where we have had problems is where we get above that level — the collective training that happens at platoon, company, battalion – that is where we have had to reduce funding.”

{ 117 comments… read them below or add one }

Mick March 27, 2014 at 5:38 pm

If they could just cut one F-35, that'd buy a whole of bullets. And new camouflage uniforms, too!

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Tom March 27, 2014 at 8:47 pm

I think the Army brass has their heads up their ass for the warmth

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majr0d March 28, 2014 at 8:39 pm

"I think the Army brass has their heads up their ass for the warmth"

Do you really think it's the Army brass' idea to take the majority of troop cuts, end Army procurement programs and cut training to fund the other branches e.g. F35 procurement, a new SAR helo for the Air Force or keep the current number of carrier groups?

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Carl March 28, 2014 at 2:33 pm

Geee, to my knowledge the U.S. Army is not allowed any fighter jets like the F-35?! Something to do with the USAF taking that away from them in 1947. I understand the marines have F-35's though, at a cost of $60 million each.

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Robert Everhart March 27, 2014 at 6:27 pm

My goodness even the Social Security Adm. even bought a large supply of amo.

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seans March 28, 2014 at 4:30 pm

They bought almost 600 rounds per agent that investigates Social Security crimes and fraud that make arrest. Really would not call that a large supply of ammo.

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majr0d March 28, 2014 at 8:44 pm

It takes less than 100 rounds to individually zero and qualify a soldier's primary weapon. 600 rounds would go a far way in doing additional training.

600 rounds isn't a large supply but it is significant.

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seans March 28, 2014 at 8:59 pm

I shot personally around 3000 rounds this week alone, government ammo, thats not a lot of ammo. Second these guys have to do at least semi annual quals, probably got to do quarterly ones. Thats going to take up at least a 100 to 200 rounds a year. Do you really think somebody is going to get proficient and stay proficient with less than 500 rounds a year?

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majr0d March 28, 2014 at 10:56 pm

Good for you. Really. Don't confuse the ammo allocations allotted to most conventional units to what a SWAT type unit may have access to.

Your typical Army Infantry unit has to qualify individuals twice a year on their individual weapon. (BTW the article says these amounts are already covered as well as squad training) Having 600 rounds per soldier for live fire goes a long way in putting together several exercises at the platoon and company level.

You started out saying 600 rounds isn't a lot but I can assure you for a conventional grunt for training it is.

As for proficiency, it's a start. A good commander always wants to raise the quality of performance. Grunts aren't doing the same thing some very specific and highly resourced law enforcement units are doing. How many frag grenades you throwing in a year?

USMCVeteran March 27, 2014 at 6:43 pm

The Army can’t afford live-fire training? Why can’t the DH”SS” provide them with a portion of those billions of rounds of ammo that they’ve been stockpiling to use against the American people?

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seans March 27, 2014 at 8:20 pm

You know they actually didn't get that much ammo right. That number basically came from InfoWars.

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AncientChief March 28, 2014 at 6:35 am

By golly, I think you're on to something! Take ammo away from DHS and give it to the Army – make the American people safer on two levels!

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grunt March 28, 2014 at 7:51 am

Maybe the Army is supposed to run out of bullets, so that no one can resist the DHS?

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orly? March 31, 2014 at 6:14 pm

Dumb theory

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d. h. gilmour March 29, 2014 at 4:54 pm

The billions of rounds of ammo DHS, IRS, DEA, FBI, ICE, OBArmy, etc are buying are Hollow Point and target ammo is Full Metal Jacket. Guess the Army Guard is trying to save the targets from destruction, while the Fed is stockpiling ammo that is all destructive. Even had someone I know with one of the federal organizations tell me that they use HP instead of FMJ for target practice and requal even though it is ususally higher in price. I don't believe it for a second…rouond

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Morgan278 March 27, 2014 at 7:12 pm

The real question is, what the fucking shit is the guy in the picture shooting at, without his rear sight.

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ANGRY TACP March 27, 2014 at 8:25 pm

That's what I was thinking

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Airborne_fister March 28, 2014 at 9:05 am

He has the new magpul flip up sight. You can flip it up with out hitting the little lever to release the whole unit.

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straps March 28, 2014 at 7:35 pm

…which he hasn't done, but should have done before firing (indicated by the smoking brass flying from the weapon.

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straps March 28, 2014 at 7:32 pm

…which makes it an entirely appropriate photo for an article about cutting live fire TRAINING…

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13stking March 31, 2014 at 12:52 pm

I was thinking the same thing! Wtf

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CaptainDoc April 2, 2014 at 11:04 pm

that is the new spray and pray sight. lets your ruck get lighter faster

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JCitizen March 27, 2014 at 7:36 pm

He's got a rear peep sight, but with that regular issue front sight he's going to be shooting mighty low! HA! Maybe that is a good indicator of what the article is talking about! Looks like hes got one of those Picatinny rail rear addons for the rear peep, or a regular A2 BUIS backup sight folded down, and a regular front post, but no rail! Good catch Morgan278!! :D

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Concerned Vet March 27, 2014 at 8:03 pm

So what the Army is saying is that other things are more important. Who in the top brass read after action reports/lessons learned. I guess nobody. If the troops are not going to get a "live fire", which were often pretty canned, is it better to wait til they face a real enemy? If there is anything better than a few if not several live fire maneuvers before a deployment I have no idea what that would be.. I'd hate to think that leaders might put career progression above troop welfare. Like the other posts said, the Army needs to raid the DHS ammo stockpile.

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Moondawg March 27, 2014 at 9:51 pm

I am sure the Army could shift funds around and find the money for ammo, but live fire is not high on their list of priorities. For one they could retire a couple three dozen generals and their staffs. The Army is getting to be all chiefs and no Indians.

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Moondawg March 27, 2014 at 9:54 pm

I am sure the Army really needs several general lawyers (who don't practice law), on yea and general nurses (who don't practice nursing) and all sorts of other staff type generals who are essentially pretty useless when it comes to a war.

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Rusty Shovel March 28, 2014 at 12:30 am

Or as my grandpa likes to say, "all weiners and no beans."

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Yellow Devil April 7, 2014 at 3:32 pm

If it was up to them, no weiners as well.

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John D March 27, 2014 at 9:54 pm

Soldiers are badly trained in weapons and need more range time than ever! Only the combat arms guys and the MPs shoot enough. I was with an armor unit, they could hit a kill at 4 thousand years but safest place was when they were shooting M4s! The last two wars should demonstrate that small arms expertise should be every soldiers mission!

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Carl March 28, 2014 at 2:43 pm

John D…..hoping your shooting skills are better than your typing, you might want to try spell check once in awhile.

Ya, the U.S. Army is so bad that they did 12 & 15 month deployments with 1 to 1 resets, when everone else was doing 6 & 7 month deployments and 2 to 1 resets. Soldiers carried OIF and OEF on their backs. The Army to its credit increased BCT from 9 weeks to 10 weeks and increased live fire range time in BCT to 125 hours from 80. In addition, all Soldiers, no matter what their MOS go through extensive weapons training before deployments.

Todays Soldiers are the best trained in the world and have 12 years worth of ground combat experience, much more than any other American conflict.

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Yellow Devil April 7, 2014 at 3:37 pm

"…all Soldiers, no matter what their MOS go through extensive weapons training before deployments."

No they don't. Being both active duty with PSYOPS and Reserve MI, my second and third deployments were seriously lacking in training. In fact, only weapons "training" we received on my last deployment was qualifications and EST 2000 virtual range training, firing 9-12 shots with a gas mask on. That was it.

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Saber6 March 28, 2014 at 2:37 am

Now ill admit that as a desert storm vet we didn’t have much in the way of gewiz tech to rely on. As a mater of fact in my intire troop we had only 1 loran c ( GPS ) for 3 scout platoons and the hhp, as you prob already guessed the The CO had it with him in the tocc. Even back then we had money issue thanks to Grand Rudman but those of us that took our profession seriously bought our own ammo. I even went so far as to buy 5.56 for a pfc in my squad and take him to the range durring sgts time to make sure that when it came time for him to cover my move that I didn’t get shot in the back because he couldn’t hit water from a boat. Durring this same time how ever our squadron CO had his cut v reoutfitted as well as his blackhalk with new seats because the old ones made his back hurt. We were always told to shoot move communicate. That said I’m sure if the army prioritized things like that they would find the money they need to keep our GIs combat ready.

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Slag March 28, 2014 at 7:37 pm

Thank you for answering our nation's call.

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AncientChief March 28, 2014 at 6:49 am

Small arms proficiency is the essence of the profession of arms. Marksmanship should be an Army priority; every soldier, like every Marine, should be a rifleman. And that goes for airmen and sailors, too.

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Juanito Grande March 28, 2014 at 9:12 am

Well said, Chief!

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Moondawg March 28, 2014 at 10:52 am

True, but it ain't going to happen in our lifetime.

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Slag March 28, 2014 at 7:39 pm

Not mention Coast Guard, gotta minimize damage to those yachts for impounding…

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AncientChief March 28, 2014 at 8:58 pm

My apologies to the Coasties for my oversight. They, too, go in harm's way in defense of freedom.

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mrlee March 29, 2014 at 3:18 pm

EVERY Marine IS a rifleman. That is why the Marines do wear outfit decals. Whether an airdale, or grunt by MOS, Marines are ALL riflemen. They have to requalify EVERY year, AND pass.

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mrlee March 29, 2014 at 3:19 pm

DO not wear decals

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DocRob March 28, 2014 at 10:07 am

heres how you save the soldier's budget;
1. Shit can the DA/DOD Civlians that get paid too much money to do a E1 to E5's job (S1 Gate guards dental techs, DFAC workers to name a few)
2. Quit with all these beautification projects for staff areas and fix the parts of base that need fixing (barracks, roads, basic infrastructure)
3. reduce the special pays/incentives for menial things (SR Officer TDY being one, really need a car with chauffer and big hotel room for each member of your retinue that doesnt even need to be there?)
4. Pick a functioning Uniform that will work in target environment and stick with it utilize the funds from AAFES/NEX to help fix things.

With those few things as a starter we could easily fund all of our IMPORTANT training and operations, I would not feel comfortable working with a unit if they have never practiced at least a few live fire operations at a unit level

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AncientChief March 28, 2014 at 11:37 am

5. Nix the subsidy for the Senate Dining Room. With what those guys make, they can afford to pay full price for their bean soup.

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mrlee March 29, 2014 at 3:21 pm

By law, it MUST BE MICHIGAN NAVY BEAN SOUP

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james ansell March 30, 2014 at 8:52 pm

AAFES and NEX profits are used to fund MWR activities. What congress needs to do is look at where budget funds can be diverted to the military budget. Yes, there are jobs being done by civilians than can be done by junior enlist. However, doing away with those jobs would only add to the unemployment rolls.

One area we need to take a look at is our country's welfare programs. Our founding fathers never envisioned the government being the sole source of income for needy families. These people need to be put to work and not as baby factories. Before anyone gets up in arms, I realize that most of those on welfare are not baby factories. However, our military personnel are asked to do more, with less, than a lot of those on welfare.

A second area of concern is foreign aid. The president has promised billions of dollars in foreign aid. We need to take care of our own before we start giving away to other countries.

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Stefan S. March 28, 2014 at 1:44 pm

Glad I'm retired. Have fun!

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Stefan S2 March 30, 2014 at 12:20 am

Glad you're retired?! Do you not see how this will still affect you and your famil's future in this nation, if you even have anyone that loves you? Or the troops you left behind? Can definitely tell you're a self-serve kind of person, always about you and no one else.

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John April 2, 2014 at 10:44 am

"Glad I'm retired." Wow! The, I've got mine, mentality. So much for selfless-service

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bart March 28, 2014 at 3:12 pm

DHS buys nearly two billion bullets but our troops can't train with live ammo?????

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seans March 28, 2014 at 4:23 pm

Seriously DHS did not buy that much ammo. Stop listening to info wars.
http://blogs.militarytimes.com/gearscout/2013/03/

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voodkokk March 28, 2014 at 6:02 pm

OK, how much did they buy?

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seans March 28, 2014 at 6:58 pm

Read the article and you will find out, or you can go back to getting you info from Alex Jones.

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voodkokk March 28, 2014 at 6:01 pm

Yep, you are right on target. What do they need that ammo for. I think they also buy up all the .22 ammo as well.

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orly? March 28, 2014 at 6:20 pm

Wow, the ammo manufacturers themselves say the .22 ammo is being used up by the civilian market.

People DO practice capitalism in this country, in ways less than honorable.

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11b March 28, 2014 at 4:18 pm

The DHS thing is NOT legit, it's an internet rumor. Show me a real source (IE not infowars) and I might take a second look.

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MECHgrunt32 March 28, 2014 at 5:33 pm

amen. too many people drinking the krazy koolaid these days.

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bart March 28, 2014 at 6:11 pm

Try doing an internet search. How about forbes and the Denver post for starters. I am sure an 11b could work the internet enough to locate the open source government bids…. but it is probably easier to stick your head in the sand and pretend it is not true.

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seans March 28, 2014 at 6:57 pm

Have you read the Forbes article its garbage, they even mention taking possession of over 2000 MRAPS, its people who don't know how to read a government contract. They never bought that much. When somebody says hollowpoints are forbidden for war that should tell you everything you need to know.(HInt for you if you don't know they are not forbidden at all for US troops to use)
http://blogs.militarytimes.com/gearscout/2013/03/

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majr0d March 28, 2014 at 9:58 pm

"if you don't know they are not forbidden at all for US troops to use"

You are factually incorrect. Hollowpoints and exploding bullets are forbidden in war according to the Hague Convention of 1899.

"In 2005, the International Committee of the Red Cross ICRC concluded a study on the customary rules of international humanitarian law applicable in international and non-international armed conflicts. 25 This ICRC study concluded that “bullets which expand or flatten easily in the human body” are prohibited for use by state practice under customary international law. 26 Seven years earlier, the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court summarily outlawed hollow point ammunition because it was a “clearly established classical prohibition". https://www.jagcnet.army.mil/DOCLIBS/MILITARYLAWR

The US position has been for a hundred years to act IAW these agreements. Some have made an argument to ditch these standards but the US hasn't officially. As soldiers follow orders their use is generally forbidden.

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seans March 28, 2014 at 10:14 pm

MK318 round might want to look it up. Socom has been using it for a while, marine corps just got into. Lawyers some how said it isn't a hollowpoint round(it is) It has a much larger opening than the MK262, and the commercial equivalent is called a hollowpoint by the manufacturer. Used it on my last deployment great round, much better than the MK262 round up close, and we have been using that as a poor mans hollowpoint for a while. Or how about the Raufoss round, thats a exploding round we have been firing out of our sniper rifles for a while now. Also the US isn't a signatory of the Hague Convention of 1899. We just have kinda followed the rules out of being a good person for a while. Kinda how like we still got land mines and clusterbombs still.

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majr0d March 28, 2014 at 11:20 pm

You must have missed it the first time…

"The US position has been for a hundred years to act IAW these agreements. Some have made an argument to ditch these standards but the US hasn't officially. As soldiers follow orders their use is generally forbidden."

Yes, familiar with the Mk318. Thanks for the advice,

FYI "Open-tip bullets have been approved for use by U.S. forces for decades, but are sometimes confused with hollow-point rounds, which expand in human tissue after impact, causing unnecessary suffering, according to widely accepted international treaties signed following the Hague peace conventions held in the Netherlands in 1899 and 1907."

"We need to be very clear in drawing this distinction: This is not a hollow-point round, which is not permitted," Brig. Gen. Michael Brogan, commander of Marine Corps Systems Command. http://www.marinecorpstimes.com/article/20100215/

Contrary to your cluster bomb and mine example we have publicly stated & are not signatories of those treaties. When we say that about the 1899 Hague Convention you'll be right. If you really think hollowpoint is fine try some hydrashock next time you're downrange but don't put out it's ok because barracks lawyers have a way of not only getting themselves in trouble but anyone else who listens.

mrlee March 29, 2014 at 3:27 pm

SEMPER FI

d. h. gilmour March 29, 2014 at 4:57 pm

If it is an interner rumor then this site is a rumor mill for that is exactly where I saw it the first time. And the total amount for all the DHS organizations and IRS is over 4 billion rounds ordered over the past 4 years.

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voodkokk March 28, 2014 at 5:59 pm

Ah, borrow some rounds from DHS they have plenty.

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mpower6428 March 28, 2014 at 6:43 pm

Which is more important… 2 or 3 dozen generals, majors and colonel's without a second of trigger time or 20 million rounds of training ammo for this years crop of 11b's….

Not quite sure what the ratio of chiefs to Indians is in the army these days and, frankly I am afraid to ask.

I am no fan of the DHS but this info-wars crap is getting annoying.

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voodkokk March 28, 2014 at 6:51 pm

What part is getting annoying, the fact they are buying that much ammo?

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voodkokk March 28, 2014 at 6:52 pm

Ah, why does the bureau of printing need bullets?

REQUIREMENT:
Item 1: Quantity: 34 cases/ 1000 rounds per case
Description: .45 lead free frangible-copper matrix

Item 2: Quantity: 5 cases /1000 rounds per case
Description: .45 duty-gold dot speer LE .45 auto230 GR GDHP

Item 3: Quantity: 5 cases/ 1250 rounds per case
Description: shotgun buckshot frangible LF

Item 4: Quantity: 5 cases/ 1000 rounds per case
Description: shotgun buckshot duty

Item 5: Quantity: 5 cases/ 1000 rounds per case
Description: shotgun slug

Item 6: Quantity: 2 cases/ 1000 rounds per case
Description: .308 rifle 150 grain

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seans March 28, 2014 at 7:08 pm

They have armed guards at their building. They require training what is that hard to understand. Thats not that much ammo . You are barely able to qualify your people with that amount.

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mrlee March 29, 2014 at 3:30 pm

Building guards only need small arms rounds for close fire.

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orly? March 28, 2014 at 7:23 pm

Seriously, when the Bush administration does this, no one bats an eye.

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majr0d March 28, 2014 at 11:46 pm

Really? When did the Bush administration cuts impact training ammo? I served during that time. It did not impact the frequency of training or ammo allocations.

If you want to be political at least get your facts straight. Better yet stop carrying the administration's water or at least switch hands so you'll be balanced.

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seans March 28, 2014 at 11:57 pm

Pretty sure he was talking about DHS getting ammo.

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majr0d March 29, 2014 at 12:34 am

Maybe, when did they buy ammo in this quantity during the Bush years?

voodkokk March 28, 2014 at 6:55 pm

Department of State

The Department of State requires the following items, Meet or Exceed, to the following:
LI 001: 9mm Ball Ammunition, 1000 rounds per case, 428, CS;
LI 002: 9mm Simunition, Red, 1000 rounds per case, 100, CS;
LI 003: 5.56×45 Ball Ammunition, 500 rounds per case, 1555, CS;
LI 004: 5.56×45 Linked (M249) Ammunition, 1600 rounds per wire bound crate., 122, CS;
LI 005: 7.62×51 Linked (M240B) Ammunition, 800 rounds per crate, 244, CS;
LI 006: 7.62x51mm Ball Ammunition, 500 Rounds per case, 60, CS;
LI 007: 7.62x39mm (AK-47) Ammunition, 500 Rounds per case, 90, CS;
LI 008: M-Pro 7 Tactical 3 Gun Cleaning Kit, 10, KT;
LI 009: M-Pro 7 Tactical Assault Rifle Bore Snake Cleaning Kit, 20, KT;
LI 010: 9mm Cleaning Batches (4000 per case), 9, CS;
LI 011: 5.56 Cleaning Batches (4000 per case), 9, CS;
LI 012: Colt, M-4 Spare Parts Kits, 30, KT;
LI 013: 5.56 Cleaning Rods, 8, EA;
LI 014: M-4 Chamber Brush, 20, EA;
LI 015: 9mm Bore Brush, 20, EA;
LI 016: 5.56 Bore Brush, 20, EA;
LI 017: 9mm Looped Cleaning Rods, 40, EA;
LI 018: M16 TAPCO AR Rifle Buttstock Pouch Cleaning Kit – Cleaning Rod Set; Patch Holder, 30, KT;

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seans March 28, 2014 at 7:06 pm

Are you really wondering why the Department of State needs guns. You realize they have diplomatic protection teams right?

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Asapdod April 5, 2014 at 6:46 pm

Last year I worked in Diplomatic security in Kabul, and all those weapons were what was issued to contractors guarding the Embassy and convoys. Depending on your job, you qualified either twice or 4 times a year. These totals actually seem low when you consider all the security at all the embassies around the world.

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HERKEY March 28, 2014 at 8:16 pm

just the obama way. STICKS AND STONES WILL BE USED NEXT THAN THEY TO WILL BE BANNED BY OBAMA!

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mrlee March 29, 2014 at 3:32 pm

If sticks and stones may break their bones, why do we need ammo? LMAO

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cjc111 March 28, 2014 at 11:09 pm

This has become an utter joke, uncontrolled economic 'underprivileged' spending programs, run away Govt. spending, excessive Govt. budgets, trillions in debt, oh but wait we need to cut back….lets get all those over paid E-4, E-5 and O-2, WAY over paid…..they need to have their pay and benefits cut back!

God help this country if something drastic should happen again……

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John March 28, 2014 at 11:42 pm

another way now to hinder our military by this muslim extremist president. Get rid of the Apache helicopter and now cut training but keep raising welfare benefits for people that contribute NOTHING TO SOCITY

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FASnipeHT2 March 31, 2014 at 1:54 am

Read the article!! Congress is making the cuts! This is a BS story! It is made to get people to ask for more money!

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Saber6 March 28, 2014 at 11:52 pm

As much as I hate to admit it ( because Obama does su(k and is forcing policies on the American public that not too long ago would have put him in front of the waren com.) didn’t start the purchase of weapons and ammo by departments other than defense. Even if he is trying to hoard these items in hopes of turning our great country into a police state the last time I checked those weapons wernt terminators yet and require a human to function. This makes for a huge problem in so much as these humans in our military and federal agencies are our children, wifes, husbands, ect. When told to atk our civilian population would turn on any member of the chain of command that tried to force the compliance of any such order. Fact is the ucmj would as I understand it anyway protect them for refusing to follow an unlawful order.

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guest April 2, 2014 at 8:27 pm

only problem with that is foreign soldiers training on U.S. soil to take control of targets and other key areas and by pass the military.

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Saber6 March 29, 2014 at 12:07 am

@ SLAG
Thank you for the recognition, it was my honor to serve this great nation, and while they get much cooler equipment than I did the men and women serving now have a much harder time than I ever did, so to all service members that have been or are involved in the war on terror and I mean all of you no mater your branch or mos THANK YOU you are truly a credit to us all now please finish the mission in such a way that no remf ass politician can try to say its not done so you can come home in the same shape you left in. At this point I don’t care if Obama says he personally killed every threat to the US with his p38 and a spoon.

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@AvidFlyer1 April 7, 2014 at 11:42 am

They may not be forbidden for U.S. Troop's but the Geneva convention prevents them to use them legally by International law.

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Sgt. jango March 29, 2014 at 11:30 am

Live fire training enhances the confidence of young soldiers and Marines. A lot of these young people didn't join the service just to be on one big working party or some sort of kitchen duty. That is why most of them come out disillusioned. Give them something to do that has to deal with there MOS, not just make them a glorified janitor. Rounds don't cost that much, and I'm sure they could make cuts elsewhere.

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conradswims March 29, 2014 at 12:00 pm

B. S! A Trillion dollar a year budget and not money for bullets?

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wtpworrier March 31, 2014 at 12:48 pm

The Army don't have a trillion dollar a year budget, why do you tell that fib?

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caddy April 7, 2014 at 1:01 pm

govt bought all bullets then trying to stop gunpowder sales !

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Solid5nake98 March 30, 2014 at 12:40 am

Guess I’m screwed when I go in…. Typical government beurocratic bullshit… I mean how the hell else are we supposed to train our army? Pellet guns? Back when my dad was in, he’d blow through 10,000 rounds with his 249, in a single field day… And another thing, with the Airforce buying new jet (jets they don’t need IMHO) and phasing out the A-10, which is built to be properly maintained with minimal resources…. My point is, how the hell could the DOD screw the Army over like this?

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Retired MSG March 30, 2014 at 7:44 am

Every time Congress talks about cutting funding for the Army, the Army cries wolf and tries to go after retirees first. After the retirees, it's a new round of BRAC, followed up by live fire training, and next it will be the DFAC's…Trust me. They do this every time. It's all a game to them, and they whine like no other when you talk about taking away some of their money.

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Grunt March 30, 2014 at 1:58 pm

To heck with bullets. I want a death ray.

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William_C1 March 30, 2014 at 3:46 pm

Maybe the Army should cut all of the new sensitivity training and other nonsense they've added in recent years so they can train soldiers like soldiers. Surely there is a 6th Independent Powerpoint Battalion somewhere that could be cut.

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Dave March 30, 2014 at 6:20 pm

But hey, welfare and Owebamaphones are are still going strong, what else do American voters need?

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CDoades March 30, 2014 at 8:50 pm

So individual marksmanship is better than unit cohesion? Don't get me wrong, BRM is good to continue, but doing live fire exercises with the unit builds cohesion within the ranks. Without that, then BRM is a waste of time.

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Karma March 30, 2014 at 10:21 pm

I’ve read many of the above comments. All I want to say is that you all just keep posting about how our military is not well trained and lacking ammo, equipment, etc. see where that gets us when the enemy reads your comments. What happened to national security????

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S.B. Hobbs March 30, 2014 at 10:30 pm

Perhaps DHS could be a good sport and transfer some of their recently acquires munitions back to the Army, where it belongs in the first place.

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SFC Michael Hendee, US Army, Retired March 31, 2014 at 12:24 am

What are decision makers thinking? Cutting back on live fire readiness training is a sure death sentence for our new Solders. Waiting until our Soldiers are sent into combat to receive their live fire training is also a sure move to defeat. Lets just issue sling shots to all. Soldiers. They can gather their own ammo that way. What a cost saving thought. Not!!! If you have ever faced and been fired upon by a hostile enemy, you know how important live fire training is.

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JJ Murray March 31, 2014 at 7:24 am

Cut ONE of the F-35s that the military is planning to buy if they ever work correctly and you could probably keep your live fire training going for several years.

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Politicalmadman March 31, 2014 at 12:42 pm

My son is in a military college. The kids (cadets) are very concerned as they hear all of this noise about cutbacks and worry about their futures when they graduate. They worry that they will have spent a lot of time preparing for a commission that will not exist. I worry myself as to the readiness these newly graduated soldiers will have heading out into the field. These levels sadly are the ones that suffer the most during these types of cuts.

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wtpworrier March 31, 2014 at 12:46 pm

They can't train without money..I mean you can but, all you can do is throw little rocks…or spit balls at each other.

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Lance March 31, 2014 at 1:34 pm

Easy kill JLTV and or kill the JSF you have more money for live fire than you ever need then.

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John March 31, 2014 at 7:48 pm

My question would be,,,, So we’re ready unless we have to Storm The Desert??

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CaptainDoc April 2, 2014 at 11:22 pm

anyone operating a firearm must spend time training with it. to not give enough ammo to person/unit is just inviting defeat when real problems arise. if you give a msg the authority that person will find many ways to cut costs and keep units moving in the right direction. we have for gotten the power & organizational skills of the senior enlisted people and we need to back off and let them do the job they are paid for and have the experience to do properly

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MSG G (ret) April 3, 2014 at 1:00 am

Expect to see more simulator qualifications ILO live firing… Not an acceptable alternative, but I feel it coming…

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Warren42 April 5, 2014 at 12:30 pm

Oh hell, let's wait until we get into a shooting war again! That will be two rounds each, make sure they count now. If they don't have live ammo now, where are they going to get it when they really need it?? Think I'll go out to the store now and buy up what I can get my hands on now, at least I know what I can do with it when I need to have it. Been there and done that before!

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seans March 28, 2014 at 11:23 pm

Live frags, probably just a couple for shits and giggles. No need to really practice throwing live ones, blue bodies work just fine, not like you can really do dynamic training with live ones. As for 600 rounds I have done IADs carrying more ammo on me than that. Back when I had to carry a AW I could easily go through 2000 rounds in a day of training. This is a serious profession we are in, and 600 rounds isn't even getting close to what you need to train to dominate the enemy. I have had conventional army squads I have had to work with, I personally feel there training is criminally negligent. Dudes who can't tell me which way north is with a setting sun to guide them, saw gunners who have never fired there weapon standing or kneeling. Saw gunners who can't bench 135 pounds and are given the gun to strengthen them up. Not even going to go into the marksmanship skills these kids had. I Guys going on ops without GRGs cause they said that type of stuff is for the corporals and sergeants, even though we put out before we made enough for everybody. Dudes doing ops with the blue screws still in their atpials cause they were never told to take them out.

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seans March 28, 2014 at 11:37 pm

Look at the design of the of the MK318 and compare it to the MK262. Its a hollowpoint, look at its specs. I know what that General is saying, but I also know what the guys who developed it said, when I went up to crane for my armorers course, I spoke to some of the guys who were responsible for that round, they made a hollowpoint round, and somehow the lawyers decreed it wasn't a hollowpoint due to the fact that the hollowpoint came from its reverse draw constuction.

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majr0d March 28, 2014 at 11:41 pm

You aren't going to get an argument from me that more ammo is better and I'm quite aware of the seriousness of the profession. I dedicated over two decades of my life to it.

Don't let one unit be your base of knowledge to evaluate all Army units. I'd be curious what specific unit it was. There's also a huge difference between combat arms and CSS and service/support Army units both in culture, training and appearance.

I would expect those carrying an automatic weapon to carry more than the rifleman's 210 round basic load.

What you described are leadership problems. We have them like most conventional units do. It's easy to look down on conventional units when one is in a highly resourced unit that can eliminate troops at the drop of a hat rather than train them.

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majr0d March 28, 2014 at 11:50 pm

Sorry, in this case I'm going to take a Marine General's word who has a staff to keep him straight and again I'll refer you to the JAG page link I cited.

If you are so sure we can use hollowpoint try some hydrashock and put it on your facebook page.

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seans March 29, 2014 at 12:12 am

Okay, again the JAG signed off on this cause this is a design byproduct that produces this "hollow cavity". Thats how they sold it. The round was designed for the navy. I was at NSWC Crane for small arms training. I personally talked to some of the original members of the procurement team. This round was designed for expansion and barrier penetration. Damneck wanted a 5.56 hollowpoint.
Do you think Generals don't lie? Cause I hear all the time Generals and Admirals talk about women integrating into SOF and the standards will not be lowered but we all no that bull.
The marines had three choices to get a better 5.56 round. Design a new round, go to the M855A1, or "make" the MK318 not a hollowpoint by some fancy legal bullsh*t. The lawyers did what they had to do to get it adopted.

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seans March 29, 2014 at 12:36 am

They were 11Bs and 11Cs. My problems aren't the fact that they don't get the same money to train. Its the fact that things that don't take money to train, how to read a map and compass, physical fitness(multiple guys couldn't do 5 pull ups, 1 kid couldn't do 1. Guys not knowing the basics of their weapons, not even knowing how to properly lube their M4s. How to work a MBITIR, never driving at night on NODs. Live Fire is nice and all, but I can say I have spent over 95 percent of my time in the house using a rubber gun or no gun at all doing CQC.

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majr0d March 29, 2014 at 1:32 am

Oh I think Generals lie all the time just as much as scuttlebutt not being accurate.

"MatchKing" rounds are also open tipped.

"MatchKing bullets, which are commonly referred to as “open-tip” bullets, are often confused with hollow-point ammunition that is designed to flatten upon impact.10 Open-tip bullets, however, are designed primarily for accuracy and not to flatten upon impact.11 In fact, open-tip bullets are not recommended for hunting because they do not flatten upon impact and kill their target quickly enough." – DA Pamphlet 27-50-399 August 2006 http://www.thegunzone.com/TAL08-2006.pdf

From the Fire armsblog:

"It should be noted that the bullet is open tip, not hollow point. Bartholomew Roberts explains …

"It isn’t a hollow point. It is an Open-Tip Match round much like the M118LR. The jacket is drawn from the base (instead of the cheaper method of jacket drawn from the nose and an exposed lead base) to the tip of the bullet. The tiny little hole there is just a remnant from jacketing the bullet that way. It isn’t designed for expansion or calculated to cause unnecessary suffering, so it doesn’t violate the Hague conventions." http://www.thefirearmblog.com/blog/2010/02/17/usm

Finally, "Compared to the M855, SOST rounds also stay on target longer in open air and have increased stopping power through “consistent, rapid fragmentation which shortens the time required to cause incapacitation of enemy combatants,” according to Navy Department documents." http://sadefensejournal.com/wp/?p=2310

They have a nifty photo of an expended Mk318 round and it's pieces vs. the classic "mushroom" of hollow point rounds.

The takeaway is you simply can't go off looks. There are rounds that look like HEAT that are actually solid AP shot. You don't know unless you take the round apart. Simply painting the tip of a round orange or red doesn't make it "tracer". Not being condescending. I'm sure you know the difference but what you are "hearing" doesn't seem to be what the round is doing. I was told long ago by very experienced tankers with years of experience that sabot tank rounds create a vacuum which causes the spaghetti look inside a vehicle. They were wrong.

You stated "they (hollowpoints) are not forbidden at all for US troops to use". I've cited several sources that say they are, When you take that hydrashock downrange and use it post it on your facebook and send me a link.

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majr0d March 29, 2014 at 1:41 am

"I'd be curious what specific unit it was." I asked for the unit not the MOS. Where these active duty soldiers?

Pull ups aren't an Army wide standard. Fieldcraft is hurting across the board especially map reading thanks to GPS. Again, not apologizing for these guys but again one unit doesn't make the whole Army and I have my suspicions who you are talking about.

Great points but you are getting farther and farther from your initial point that 600 rounds per soldier wouldn't make a lot of difference. I think live rounds going by even the incompetent is a good thing. If they are stupid they'll get shot but likely before they were allowed on the range higher leadership would recognize some pretty basic training inadequacies before doing a live fire.

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seans March 29, 2014 at 12:01 pm

Going to try one more time. I know what the press releases say. But I have talked to the members of the original design and procurement team at NSWC Crane. I didn't get this knowledge from somebody in the field. I got it from the people who were responsible for getting this thing fielded. We already had a Open tip round in Socom. MK262. What was wanted was a better close range round for the MK18s and 10 inch 416s. They got a round that expands in the human body much better than anything else. That was the point of it. Its also great for penetrating barriers. SOCOM got the round going. SOCOM has always had the ability to field hollowpoint ammo for CT purposes. It was when the Marine Corp wanted to field it they had to say it was open tip instead of hollowpoint, and that the open tip came as a by product of its design. Again we did not sign the Hague Conventions. Even you link to military law review shows how the US pulled a smooth one and never forbid the use of hollowpoints when it is a military necessity.

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seans March 29, 2014 at 4:13 pm

First Infantry Division, think it was the Duke brigade or something. You are trying to suggest that 600 is a lot per soldier. I am arguing that it isn't. Lets just say that 600 is used for live fire training not marksmanship. Okay so we got 20 mags round it to 21 for a basic loadout x3. What does that actually train. Fire and maneuver? It takes a lot of repetitions to get good at this. You keep saying that is more than enough for a grunt, but for what not shooting themselves in the foot? How many night runs do you expect to get out of this. I know I would go through about 5 to 6 mags on a IAD, and we would do at least 4 or 5 before we would go on nods. 600 rounds of moving and shooting shouldn't even last a half day. If you can spread that out over a year you have major problems in your training program.

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majr0d March 29, 2014 at 8:41 pm

Hard to believe of the 3rd BCT of the 1st ID considering it's 36 months of combat (3 deployments for an Army unit, over 5 deployments if it was a Marine unit). When and where did you come across this weak leadership and in what capacity where you tro evaluate it?

"You keep saying that is more than enough for a grunt,"

Where did I say that ONCE? You don't have a bad point promoting more ammo for training but it doesn't get any stronger by making up things I said. 600 rounds per soldier to do platoon and company collective training is a start is what I said. (the article has ammo is resourced for individual and squad training). I'd like to have more or a STRAC manual handy but this whole thing started when you defended law enforcement organizations that have 600 rounds per agent.

5 to 6 mags is 150 – 180 rounds. It doesn't take almost shooting one's basic load to achieve many training objectives. Maybe to fight a whole battle but not for an iteration of specific battle drills. There's something to be said for fire discipline to.

As for training programs, what are your credentials for evaluating a training program? I'm curious what your experience is because conventional units are authorized way less than SOF to conduct training. Further training stateside or out of theatre comes out of a different ammo lot than when deployed. What's your experience from where you are making these pronouncements? How many platoons/companies have you commanded and for how long? Were you an operations officer or senior ops NCO for a Battalion developing training programs for platoons and companies?

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majr0d March 29, 2014 at 9:34 pm

You can keep trying but you aren't listening/reading.

"It was when the Marine Corp wanted to field it (mk318) they had to say it was open tip instead of hollowpoint,"

No, as per the link I sent you we've been doing this for awhile. "In 1985, judge advocates (JAs) from the Army, Air Force, and Navy reviewed for compliance with the law of war MatchKing bullets, ammunition often used by military snipers.2" – DA Pamphlet 27-50-399 August 2006 http://www.thegunzone.com/TAL08-2006.pdf

"SOCOM has always had the ability to field hollowpoint ammo for CT purposes."

Again, evidence? I don't doubt on a covert mission for the CIA JSOC is using whatever it pleases but it's not in general use and no one is going to admit they are violating US policy or tell the world that "hollowpoint isn't forbidden" which you have taken on yourself to say..

I've supplied you multiple links with names of some pretty prominent people. You've even implied they are lying. What are the names of your sources?

We aren't signatories of the 1899 Hague agreement. We still abide by it an contrary to your barracks lawyer prounouncement that hollowpoint isn't forbidden I've definitively showed it is. You will be prosecuted for using hollowpoint against the enemy.

If you doubt me take me up on the hydrashock facebook challenge.

You mentioned the Ottawa Treaty, the Anti-Personnel Mine Ban Convention, as an example we don't follow and aren't signatories of but you forget we DO follow the treaty when it comes to hand emplaced anti-tank and M18 anti-personnel mines.

Now if you are making the argument that we should be using hollowpoint that's a completely different issue as opposed to putting out hollowpoints aren't forbidden by our military.

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