USMC picks M4 carbine to replace the M16A4 rifle 42710151

Defence & Security News - (USA)
USMC picks M4 carbine to replace the M16A4 rifle
After a period of recommendations and reviews, the United States Marine Corps will replace the M16A4 rifle with the M4 carbine. The Corps Commandant, General Robert Neller has signed the order, according to Marine Corps Times. The carbines will become the primary weapon until September 2016. The recipients will be all infantry battalions, the security forces and supporting schools.
USMC picks M4 carbine to replace the M16A4 rifle
A Marine with an M4 carbine in Afghanistan. (Photo: USMC / Cpl Trent A. Randolph)

The M4 carbine has been selected after rigorous tests and lessons learned from combat. Based on the infantrymen’s opinion, the M16A4 was too long and not suitable for close-quarters battle or vehicle operations. Moreover, the M4 saves on weight carried by Marines and is more functional for people with smaller body mass.

According to the USMC officials, the carbine will be firing the AB49 Special Operations Science and Technology cartridge, which will become the standard ammunition for the Corps. The fire tests conducted by the Marines showed that this cartridge offers better ballistic characteristics compared to the M16A4, at distances up to 600 metres.

Lt. Col. (ret.) Chris Woodburn, currently serving as deputy head of the Maneuver Branch, of the Fires and Maneuver Integration Division at the Marine Corps Combat Development Command said at the Marine Corps Times that the transition would come at no cost and in fast pace.

Since the rifle is already in use by the Corps, the Marine Expeditionary Units would redistribute any excess M4s with their combat optics and those units that are short of the carbines, will ask the USMC Logistics Command to ship them the necessary quantities. The aim is to complete the whole process by the end of 2016.



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