Since the dawn of modern warfare, the best way to stay alive in the face of incoming fire has been to take cover behind a wall. But thanks to a game-changing “revolutionary” rifle, the U.S. Army has made that tactic dead on arrival. Now the enemy can run, but he can’t hide.
After years of development, the U.S. Army has unleashed a new weapon in Afghanistan — the XM25 Counter Defilade Target Engagement System, a high-tech rifle that can be programmed so that its 25-mm. ammunition detonates either in front of or behind a target, meaning it can be fired just above a wall before it explodes and kills the enemy.
It also has a range of roughly 2,300 feet — nearly the length of eight football fields — making it possible to fire at targets well past the range of the rifles and carbines that most soldiers carry today.
Lt. Col. Christopher Lehner, project manager for the semi-automatic, shoulder-fired weapon system for the U.S. Army’s Program Executive Office Soldier, said that the XM25’s capability alone is such a “game-changer” that it’ll lead to new ways of fighting on the battlefield, beginning this month in Afghanistan.
“With this weapon system, we take away cover from [enemy targets] forever,” Lehner told FoxNews.com on Wednesday. “Tactics are going to have to be rewritten. The only thing we can see [enemies] being able to do is run away.”
[…]Lehner said the first XM25s were distributed to combat units in Afghanistan this month. The 12-pound, 29-inch system, which was designed by Minnesota’s Alliant Techsystems, costs up to $35,000 per unit and, while highly sophisticated, is so easy to use that soldiers become proficient within minutes.
“That’s how intuitively easy it is, even though it’s high-tech,” Lehner said. “All a soldier needs to know how to do is laze the target. It decimates anything within its lethal radius.”
A potential battlefield scenario, according to Army officials, might go something like this:
— A patrol encounters an enemy combatant in a walled Afghan village who fires an AK-47 intermittently from behind cover, exposing himself only for a brief second to fire.
— The patrol’s leader calls for the XM25 gunman, who uses the weapon’s laser range finder to calculate the distance to the target.
— He then uses an incremental button located near the trigger to add 1 meter to the round’s distance, since the enemy is hiding behind a wall.
— The round is fired, and it explodes with a blast comparable to a hand grenade past the wall and above the enemy.
It is laser-guided. You know how you can’t hit the broad side of a barn with an underslung M203 grenade launcher past a hundred yards? Yeah, well this thing is laser-guided. Laser-guided grenade launcher. Semi-automatic laser-guided grenade launcher!
You don’t even have to do standard 4F military tactics (Find, Fix, Flank, Finish). (Not to be confused with Patricia Churchland’s 4Fs of evolutionary theory – feeding, fighting, fleeing and reproducing). You can just explode a grenade right over their heads!
Made by Heckler & Koch, naturally. By the way, I fired an HK USP9 recently on my annual trip to the firing range. It rocked! Unfortunately they did NOT allow me to try the HK CAWS or the caseless HK G11. Phooey!
Now if we could only scrap the JSF and revive the F-22, I would be much happier and safer.