When I came onto this board I said one of my reasons to do so was to hopefully correct some misconceptions. I also said I believed most of those misconceptions were honest ones. So let’s take a look at this list of misconceptions taken from the board: *What was it? An average of 50,000 rounds to one kill in Vietnam? While snipers averaged 1.5. There is a reason that the military has gone to 3 round burst. First of all, I remember the Logistical Study of the cost of the war in Viet Nam that came up with that 50,000 round number. I also remember the History Channel show which reported that number. How easy it is to take something out of context and everyone in the world to believe it as gospel. They study concluded that based on the Logistical Reports of the amount of ammunition sent to the region, based on the reports of Viet Cong and North Vietnamese causalities, it took 50,000 rounds to kill one of the enemy. And certainly that was the bottom line. What the television program neglected to mention was that the Report was not restricted to the 5.56mm ammo for the M16 rifles. Since there is no way to determine how much ammo was expended during each firefight, the Logistic documents dating back to 1957 till the war was ended in 1975 were used. All those documents do is record quantity by type sent to that theater of operations, which included Thailand. Consider that the list of ammunition is vast. Starting with 22Short and ending with 16 inch Naval shells. It does it take into consideration the ammunition destroyed when the ammo dumps at Khe Sanh, Phu Bai, Da Nang and Dak To were blown up during rocket attacks. Nor does it take into account the amount of ammunition used by Special Forces and Marine CAG’s to train and equip their Mike Forces and PF’s (militia). It does not take into consideration Harassment & Interdiction Fires on suspected enemy locations by artillery. Recon by Fire. LZ clearing operations by helicopter gun ships. Or Spooky missions on the Ho Chi Minh trail. And Preparatory Fires on objectives that often didn’t have a single enemy on the hill, or in the case of Hill 881, totally cleared the hill of vegetation without inflicting 10 percent causalities on the enemy. But it sure gave them a clear field of fire to rain down on the 101<SUP>st</SUP> Airborne. Now having seen this program on a couple of occasions, I also note that the film of grunts blasting away looks ridiculous to the uninformed. A lot of what you see is actually covering fire for other elements that are conducting fire and maneuver. Even though it is a bonus to hit the enemy with fire, the main function of a covering element is to keep the heads of the enemy down while the maneuver element is doing just that, maneuvering. What the film did not show was that the majority of fighting done in Viet Nam inside of 50 yards. And some was done at point blank range. *Spray and pray guns might be a gas to shoot but I don't see any tactical advantage other than a rare close quarters, house cleaning type of role. Full auto or spray and pray was used in the brush where often you could not see the target, but could hear the incoming fire. It was especially effective in breaking up ambushes. We, as our Army counterparts, were trained to turn into the ambush, and on full auto, clear the area while advancing into the enemy. Sounds crazy does it not? But you have to consider that the majority of torso wounds from an ambush were inflicted on people that had dropped to the ground when the ambush was opened up. In the heavy brush, our M79 folks carried canister rounds. 40mm shotgun shells capable of clearing a lot of brush. *A marksman who can hit his target, especially at ranges that keep the enemy away from you, is more valuable IMHO than a squad of rock and rollers spraying lead and hoping to hit something. It was learned by the services that in the brush, folks taking the time to make aimed shots, usually didn’t survive the engagement. The Army taught a technique called Point Shooting, while the Marines just got dirty about it and called it Quick-Kill. It is a technique of shooting without actually aiming and is very effective. It is a shoulder fired position, except you do not use the sights. Sighting takes seconds to accomplish, and those seconds can mean the difference between living and dying. An individual who is proficient at the technique can effectively put round on target at ranges up to 100 yards. The folks that learned it the quickest and best were the people that had been raised hunting with a shotgun. *IMHO: If you are walking along and hear auto fire you are generally safe, its when you hear individual; semi auto AIMED SHOTS COMING YOUR WAY are you in individual danger. Well now. Considering that everyone is afraid of the Military and that the average Army Squad will have 2 each SAW’s, in the hands of trained individuals, if you hear auto fire then you had best be hoping that either your HMO or Life Insurance is paid up. Both the Army and Marines hold marksmanship competitions annually for their machine gun crews. This is on a course of fire starting at 100 meters going out to 500 meters. And the targets are such that most people reading that would complain about the ranges even if they were using a very expensive rifle with an even more expensive scope. And this course of fire is done with iron (open) sights. But one of the keys to using a these weapons is not pulling the trigger and holding it down, but stroking the trigger for 3-5 round bursts. Which brings me back to the top of this article and moving a quote down here. *What was it? An average of 50,000 rounds to one kill in Vietnam? While snipers averaged 1.5. There is a reason that the military has gone to 3 round burst. We’ve dealt with the first part of the comments above. Next…… *While snipers averaged 1.5. Snipers have a valued part to play on the battlefield, but they cannot win the battle by themselves. The sniper mentality I often see on firearms boards is a dangerous one. But the name sniper brings about visions of one man against the world. Super macho to the max. *There is a reason that the military has gone to 3 round burst. Sure there was a reason but it was not the 50,000 rounds per kill. Until the introduction of the M249 SAW, everyone carried the same rifle. Each Fire Team had a designated Automatic Rifleman. It was his job to provide full auto fire, while the remainder of the Fire Team used semi-auto only. Great in concept, but as I have already mentioned, there were times that everyone used full auto. One of the myths of the M16 series rifle is accuracy. The M16, M16A1 both were very accurate with the 55 grain bullet. Although, the A1 was far superior to the basic rifle due to having a chrome lined barrel. It was not a problem for a trained marksman to hit man size targets at 500 yards with one. But the Marine Corps wanted a heavier bullet at range, and in secret, developed the M16A2. The M16A1 was capable of holding a 20 round burst into a man’s chest at 100 yards on full automatic in the hands of a trained shooter. Sounds ridiculous? Not really considering that Eugene Stoner designed the rifle with shooter ergonomics in mind. But what is hard to do is teach an individual to hold a 3-5 round burst. And I admit that I am one of those that never seemed able to get it down that tight. But I know an individual that could milk a trigger on an M60 so softly that he could fire it single shot. Some have the talent, others don’t. Now, since the M249 was well into the system, there was no longer a need for everyone to have a full auto capable rifle. So the Corps determined a 3-shot burst pack was better all around then full auto. Enter the M16A2 with a heavier round and a 3 shot burst pack. Let me see…. We start with the M16, evolved into the M16A1, along with the CAR-15 (which became the M4 when set-up for the heavier round), then the M16A2, M16A3 and the M16A4. The M16A2 proved during testing and competition to be a very accurate rifle. Even beating the M14 on several occasions. But it is not a full auto rifle. The M16A3 is under scrutiny right now because by removing the rear sight ramp, the ergonomics have been changed and has created an accuracy problem under full auto. The M16A4 is basically an M16A1 with the heavy round capability. Reports I am hearing is that the Navy Seals, who are currently the sole user of the A4 just loves the rifle. But then again, the Seals loved the Stoner63 system in Viet Nam. Lot’s of firepower, but the safety sucked big time. So, if things go to hell in a hand basket, you can bet some of the military’s rifles will find their way into the hands of folks that you’d rather not do business with. And if you hear full auto fire you had best be paying attention to where it is coming from and who it is aimed at. Cause contrary to popular belief, unless the round that hits you is instantly fatal, you WILL hear the one that gets you.