Infantry: October 29, 2002

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The U.S. Marine Corps has selected the M-16A4 as their new standard infantry rifle. The loser in this competition was the lighter M-4. Over the past 18 months, the marines have been testing the lighter M-4 (an M-16 with a shorter barrel.) The M-16A4 proved to be more reliable than the M-4 in tests, and a poll of Marine Corps Times readers favored the M-16A4 47 percent to 21 percent (32 percent wanted another weapon). Marine LRRPs and commandos have been using the M-4 since 1999. The two weapons are nearly identical except for the M-4s lighter weight (6.5 pounds versus 7.5) and lower accuracy and hitting power of M-4 bullets beyond 200 meters. Like the M-4, the M-16A4 has a removable carrying handle so that more accessories can be fitted. 

 


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