Previous Post
Next Post


The Washington Times has published a “How well do you know your guns?” quiz on its website. As you see above, I got one wrong. Well, I insist I’m actually correct and that the Times’ answer for the Hague Convention question isn’t technically right. Take the quiz to see how you fare! If you’re curious about the Hague thing, the reasoning follows (spoiler alert). . .


I answered “False.” Why? The Hague Convention banned “…the use of bullets which expand or flatten easily in the human body.” Full text here. That doesn’t actually ban all hollow-points, as many projectiles have a hollow point not for any expansion reason whatsoever, but just for superior aerodynamics and, primarily, superior long range stability gained by moving the mass to the rear of the projectile.

For instance, the MK 262 and MK 318 do use hollow point bullets (although they’re referred to as OTM or “Open Tip Match” to avoid this very point of possible confusion) but are internationally legal for use in warfare. On the flip side, plenty of projectiles that do not have hollow points are not legal under this part of the Hague Convention.

I’m clearly far too pedantic for internet quizzes…

Previous Post
Next Post


    • Actually, the Wash Times was developed as a conservative alternative to the Wash Post. Wesley Pruden is one of the big bugs at Wash Times. He’s not exactly what you would call “liberal”.

    • Agreed. I was just expecting questions about models and calibers, or maybe even simpler things related to function (like bolt action, single action, etc). I was surprised that there were questions like which gun was used by which person, etc… and thought it was pretty good overall.

      • If I hadn’t read Kyle’s book I wouldn’t have gotten his caliber question.

        Still missed 2 of ’em, tho…

        • Yeah I only knew this one from making lots of trips to NYC for work over the past few years. The first time I saw an officer with a wheel gun in his holster it piqued my interest, and I found out that they actually do have options. Found out from the officer, no less. I asked him about it and he was surprisingly friendly and candid. Maybe there’s some self selection bias in this regard among the guys who actually choose a revolver over the 10-lb-trigger Glock haha. He knew what he was talking about.

    • I missed the Hague one (Although, I also still insist that I am technically correct). I also missed the one about Patton’s pistol. 11/13 is not bad.

      • Patton was quoted as saying something like “only a pimp from a cheap new Orleans brothel would carry a pearl handled revolver.”

      • The 1899 Hague is the one that mentioned expanding bullets. The following Hague used more generic language.

    • The NYPD one is the one I missed too. I have no reason to know or care what NYPD are allowed to use.

  1. Selecting ‘U.S.’ for the question “This country has the highest per capita gun ownership of any country in the world” was very satisfying.

  2. 100%. I was a wee bit unsure about the NYPD brand question, mainly whether it was S&W or Beretta, since I recalled past articles about NYPD mentioning SIG and Glock.

  3. If the Hague Convention (which the US never signed anyway) doesn’t ban hollowpoints, then why is the US the ONLY country that uses hollowpoints for military purposes (and then pretty much exclusively for sniping rounds)? iirc, back in the 1990s, the JAG or whoever it was who okayed the development of the M118LR, Mk262, Mk318, and other BTHPs/OTMs used by the US military did so on the basis “they aren’t THAT expanding…” and “the hollowpoint gives it’s better long-range ballistics.” We’re also one of the few countries that doesn’t arm every police officer with an SMG or assault rifle fully-loaded with FMJs.

    • Per what Jeremy said above, it does ban bullets meant to expand/flatten upon impact, commonly known as hollow-points. The US (as well as a number of other countries) never ratified that part of the Convention (IV3) banning the use of said bullets, though it generally abides by it. Proof is in the use of 5.56 FMJ as the primary rifle for the military. Given that the US never signed on, it’s about time they realized war isn’t pretty or civilized and start issuing hollow-point rounds that will actually incapacitate the enemy.

      • Eh. Just because the main function of the open tip is to increase range and accuracy does not negate the fact that it still expands upon impact (which is and was the main reason the Dum Dum Arsenal started developing the hollowpoint design to begin with). The other excuse I’ve heard was that since we’ve only engaged a couple other countries for very short periods in the last 30 years (Noriega’s Panama, Saddam’s Iraqi government, and Belgrade), it’s okay to use hollowpoints on “terrorists,” “insurgents,” and other “non-state actors” (to include troops from an “unrecognized state” such as the Serbian Republic) in a “police action.” This whole issue is really quite stupid, but I don’t think other countries’ “progressive” sensibilities will allow them to dump that ridiculous treaty.

        • Don’t other NATO countries, including the UK, use some of these OTM rounds? I did not think it was exclusively the U.S. And they may or may not expand on impact. The cavity may just crush in on itself. Expansion is not a design consideration and they won’t reliably do it all all, and even when they do it’s usually just jacket wrapping back on itself, eh?

          BTW I think your standard 55-grain ball out of an M16 — old school M16 especially, with its slow twist rates — is a clearer violation of the 1899 agreement (which, yes, the U.S. never signed anyway). That ammo was specifically designed to deform, flatten, bend, yaw, tumble, etc and it sure as heck did. Most of the damage was caused by these things. Considering flattening was specifically mentioned as a no-no, 5.56 ball shouldn’t be okay anyway. OTM rounds would be comparatively more “humane” under the assumptions of the 1899 Hague.

  4. Not a fan of this quiz. Too many of the questions are “what gun does so and so use” not how said guns function.

    • And I am going to be a bit pedantic here, but the “.338 Lapua” used by Chris Kyle was a caliber designation for the round he was shooting in a different rifle, which (I believe) was a McMillan Tac-338 in .338 Lapua caliber.

  5. Well, SIG brought me down. I was actually expecting something a little more basic.

  6. May need to perform another “per capita” study for Iraq . There has been a recent spike in both the import of firearms and murder of civilians there as well.

    • Iraq still isn’t even close. If gun ownership even passed the 20% mark, including illegally owned guns, in Iraq I would eat my hat.
      If they had anywhere near as many guns as we do, they wouldn’t be afraid of ISIS.

  7. CT may have at one time built the guns that “won the west” but today are leading the way in which state can create more stupid laws that bankrupt a state — CA vs. CT and the CT politicians believe they can win the “we are more stupid” and percent of debt to GDP war

  8. Dang it! I had all of them right until the very last question about the grip material of Patton’s sidearm. I guessed right, then changed my answer before clicking “next”. Oh, well 92% is still pretty good.

    • When I read the question, all I could hear was the voice of George C Scott saying: “They’re ivory! Only a pimp from a cheap New Orleans whorehouse has pearl handled pistols.”

    • Same two missed here. Don’t care about the NYPD, and I would think Patton preferred pearl for durability.

    • Some reporter once asked Patton if his grips were made of pearl. His reply was along the lines of “They’re ivory – only a pimp in a cheap New Orleans whorehouse would have pearl grips.” Of course, that may be only a “Patton legend”, but the grips were ivory. And did you know that one of the guns he carried was an early (mfg 1935) S&W .357 magnum? the other was a Colt SAA .45 that he carried in Mexico in 1916.

  9. I missed three because I over thought it or I made a mistake. I clicked on Beretta on the NYPD question then I thought about how everyone is scared of Glocks and changed my answer.
    On the Secret Service question, I knew the answer before seeing the choices but for some reason I didn’t see Sig Sauer at the bottom so I missed that one. The other one about the Colt and Winchester mfg location, I had a feeling it was Conn but I just couldn’t bring myself to vote for Conn so I clicked Texas knowing that wasn’t right.

  10. Your Results:
    Correct: 13
    Incorrect: 0
    Number Of Questions: 13
    Percent correct: 100%


  11. I got two wrong. On one it was an answer I knew, but thought they were trying to be tricky. I always hated multiple choice!

    However, I found one of the questions to be incorrectly written. “What was James Bond’s gun of choice?” The “correct” answer was “Walther PPK.” That was the gun he was forced to carry starting in the sixth book, “Dr. No.” But it was clear that his carry gun of choice was a .25 Beretta. He carried that in the first five books and only gave it up reluctantly in the sixth.

    The Beretta was described as having a skeletonized handle and is believed to be a Beretta 418. Some trivia: The prop people in the movie, “Dr. No” used a Beretta 1934 in .380 to represent the .25 that he had to give up and the Walther he was issued in that movie was actually a PP. Also, in the books Bond had a Colt Police Positive .38 with a sawn-off barrel that he kept under his pillow and a Colt .45 long barrel revolver under the dash in his Bentley. The Bentley was destroyed in “Moonraker,” after which he got the Aston-Martin.

  12. Well, my CMP Garand is chambered in .308, but I didn’t fall for that answer…
    M80 ball is a lot easier to find than M2 ball these days.

  13. What makes any of those questions relevant to how well I know MY guns? A neat trivia quiz for those interested, of course, but has nothing to do with my guns or why I have them.

    Waste of time for me.

  14. Wow, got ’em all easily, including correctly giving the “wrong” answer about hollow-point bullets and the Hague convention. I feel like I’ve just had some vindication of my gun geek bonafides, despite the opinion of the Washington Post being unfit to make any legitimate determination. I would say though that I don’t thing it’s essential knowledge for any firearms enthusiast to know what the NYPD issue weapons are, unless you live in New York. I’m from New York, so it makes sense that I’d be interested and know. As a New Yorker and one who aced the quiz, I absolve you if you are rarely in NY and got the question wrong. I don’t think it’s important to care about knowing the issue weapons of every police department in the nation. I have a healthy interest in guns. My enthusiasm is not in the form of a mental illness where I’m memorizing train schedules and flight routes I have no expectation of ever taking.

    Maybe The Truth About Guns should put together a quiz like this so that we can get a rough idea of just how deep we’re in it. Heck, TTAG should do a new one every couple of years so we can see if our scores increase. (“Want your score to increase for next year’s quiz? Just keep reading The Truth About Guns!”)

  15. Missed a few, that don’t matter. Patton, mother of pearl or ivory? Does not matter.

  16. 77%. Missed the NYPD question, the revolver patent question, and General Patton’s grips. The first one is excusable because I don’t care about or live in NY, the second two aren’t because I’m a nerd. Oh well!

  17. The Chris Kyle question was wrong. They asked “what gun”. 338 Lapua caliber is not a gun. It is a cartridge, or more accurately, dimensions of a cartridge and projectile.

    • Sure, maybe, but if I was standing next to you and we had a collection of firearms on the table in front of us, and I said “pick up the 12ga”, you’d know I meant the shotgun, and not a shell, right? Same if I said “pick up the 9mm”.

      • I might ask which 12ga, or which 9mm if there was a true collection. Then I’d grab one of those 30 round clips for the 12 ga and make sure it was set to “spray”.

        • Sure, you might ask me to be more specific regarding which gun, but my point stands that you’d have known I was talking about a firearm, not a cartridge or shell.

  18. I hadn’t missed one until I got to the Gen. George Patton question. Then it errored out and wouldn’t go any further. Trying again didn’t help. Same error. I think I could have gotten 100%!

  19. I blew the one about NYPD because I thought SIGs were too expensive and picked SIG, but I guess Beretta’s are too expensive…oh well. Almost picked the wrong one about Chris Kyle’s long range shot, then changed my mind and picked the correct one.
    Not a bad quiz, but I expected more about firearms function and tech than historical questions. So, it did make me have to dig deeper into the memory banks, which is good, I guess.

  20. Your Results:

    Correct: 8
    Incorrect: 5
    Number Of Questions: 13
    Percent correct: 62%

    D. … but I got the Patton question right!

Comments are closed.