I just found a short article at Defensetech.org (with a hat-tip to military.com) about the weapons our troops are using in Iraq and Afghanistan.
It seems that many troops are requesting that the military ditch the M9 pistol ( a 9mm round) because it has insufficient stopping power. Some are specifically asking for a return to the venerable M1911 .45 caliber. In fairness, I've been hearing this for a couple years.
Well duh. The US adopted the 9 mm about 20 years ago (give or take) simply because our allies all use it, and this way we could have compatible ammunition. The .45 on the other hand was designed for the US Army during the Moro rebellion in the Philippines. It was designed specifically to give the troops a pistol with terrific stopping power, as a last-ditch defense.
Here's a little tip: When your military buys a new weapon, designed specifically to be used to stop fanatical Muslim guerrillas who are whacked out on their narcotic of choice, and it works brilliantly for about 80 years, think hard about replacing it for no good reason.
The saddest thing about this whole affair is that it's just so... obvious. I was in the Army when the switch to the newer pistol began (though I never used one). I clearly recall discussions with other officers and NCOs, in which we all-without exception- took the view that it was a mistake to switch, because the .45 was a more "lethal" round. But of course, the decision was made up in Washington (I assume), which someone once described to me as "where the rubber meets the clouds".
I just wonder how many of our soldiers were killed because they couldn't stop an enemy soldier, even with multiple shots. As the article says:
'"When speaking to experts and Soldiers on site, many commented on the limited ability to effectively stop targets, saying that those personnel targets who were shot multiple times were still able to continue pursuit," the report said.'
This is a tragedy. You need weapons that are lethal to fight a war. It's pretty simple. The .45 is one of the best weapons mankind has ever designed for close-range fighting, like that in a fight to the death (which is what our soldiers have to expect when fighting these animals).
I hope that none of the soldiers that have been captured by terrorists-like the 3 young men this month- were captured by assailants that had already been shot, to no avail.
That would be a crime.