The U.S. Army has begun sending the new M855A1 Enhanced Performance Round to Afghanistan. In the next year and a bit, the U.S. Army will take delivery of some 200 million rounds of the improved 5.56×45 cartridge. Advantages? Better hard-target capability, greater dependability and accuracy, reduced muzzle flash and a higher velocity. That’ll do nicely for the M-4, M-16 and M-249. Oh, and the new round will eliminate up to 2,000 tons of lead from the manufacturing process each year (’cause you don’t want to kill people when you’re trying to kill people). Now how much would you pay? Over at abovetopsecret.com, a regular commentator is well pleased . . .

The Major could only be more thrilled if the 5.56mm round was dropped in it’s entirety. There is no doubt that the new 62gr bullet will perform better across the spectrum, make all those hippie tree huggers happy because no lead is used, but it’s a stop gap at best. what this man’s army needs is a new round and a well maintained new weapon to put it in.

The Major has long given up on writing Santa Claus for new wool socks, and that annual birthday wish for a olive drab burlap living room set has been put on the back burner. Even the Major has to makes sacrifices, and the aforementioned sacrifices should more than qualify for a 6.5mm ball round in a modular weapons package that can fill all the small arms needs of the Army.

The Major has been briefly assuaged.

Dismissed.

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