Browsing: Gear

The Marine Corps made a significant change in the fall, deciding to adopt a new common weapon sling for service rifles. That sling, as Marine Corps Times reported here, is the Vickers Combat Applications two-point sling, made by Blue Force Gear, of Pooler, Ga. It’s designed by Larry Vickers, a retired special operator well regarded for his innovation in the marksmanship world. Rob Curtis, Military Times’ Gear Scout blogger, ran into Vickers at SHOT Show this week. They discussed several items on video, including the new Marine Corps sling. Check it out here:

The Modern Day Marine exposition kicked off at Quantico, Va., this morning, providing a glimpse into some of the newest developments available in military technology and equipment. The annual event will be held through Thursday, featuring exhibits from at least 500 companies on the parade deck near Lejeune Hall. Marine Corps Times and its sister publication, Defense News, will be blogging from the show. Check it out here.

This week in Marine Corps Times, junior Marines and noncommissioned officers debate one general’s controversial initiative to eradicate illegal drug use in his command. Dubbed “Not in My Corps,” Brig. Gen. William D. Beydler’s new campaign encourages rank-and-file troops within Japan’s 1st Marine Aircraft Wing to inform a superior if they see anyone in their unit getting high. Some troops call that snitching and a call to violate the trust Marines must have for one another at the small-unit level. But the commandant praises the effort, and the three-star head of all Marine forces in Japan says commands across the…

UPDATE: The Marine Corps Times cover story on the IAR is now posted online here. The M27 Infantry Automatic Rifle was approved for full fielding recently by Commandant Gen. Jim Amos. Marine Corps Times profiled the decision in its print edition last week, outlining what it means for each fire team, rifle qualifications and the gear Marines bring to war. The decision is a big deal to the Corps, but until now, no photographs of the IAR in Afghanistan have been released. That’s where Marine Corps Times photographer Tom Brown comes in. Below, you’ll find images shot on patrol last…

Patrol Base Boldak, Afghanistan – A casual conversation with an infantryman, who’s had a few deployments here and in Iraq, reveals a happy history of heat, cold and general discomfort along the lines of “I lived in my vehicle for seven months.” That is still par for the course — and a form of shared misery preferred by many Marines. But the procurement system has brought some smart comfort to enhance existing structures, such as these insulating tent liners I watched being installed here. They’re made by HDT for the 100, 200 and 300 series shelters and can bring the…

Since early in the Iraq war, Marines in combat have carried either the M16A4 rifle or M4 carbine, 5.56mm workhorses that leathernecks know well. Soon, the Marine Corps could adopt big changes to those weapons. While the Army searches for a possible new carbine, Marine officials want to overhaul both the M16A4 and M4, modernizing to make them more adjustable, accurate and comfortable. The effort to modernize the M16A4 shows a continued divergence with the Army, which continues to favor carbines and their shorter barrels. The Corps continues to stick largely with the M16A4 and its 20-inch barrel, which advocates…

The debate rages on, but the infantry automatic rifle will soon join the war in Afghanistan. Marine officials announced last night that 1st Battalion, 3rd Marines, out of Marine Corps Base Hawaii, will deploy to Helmand province beginning today. They’ll eventually take over in country for 2nd Battalion, 1st Marines, out of Camp Pendleton, Calif., which has patrolled Garmser district since the fall. The deployment by 1/3’s Lava Dogs will serve as the first war-zone test for the 5.56mm M27 IAR, which could eventually replace the M249 squad automatic weapon on many infantry patrols. For now, it’s expected the unit will…

Readers may have seen online a story today in which the commander of Marine Corps Recruiting Command outlined in an exclusive interview where he sees recruiting going in the next few years. Maj. Gen. Robert Milstead says things are currently going relatively well, but saw a few potential obstacles in coming years, including a declining advertising budget. There’s another element in the story that will catch the interest of the techies in the room, however. Officials at Marine Corps Recruiting Command told me that recruiters are currently experimenting with Apple’s iPad to record the information of potential recruits. It works…

Modern Day Marine, the Marine Corps’ premier expo event, kicks off today at 9:45 a.m. at Marine Corps Base Quantico, Va. More than 500 companies will be on hand displaying everything from flashlights and clothing to tactical vehicles and weapons, and the Corps also will make presentations about its future needs to industry. Marine Corps Times will be on hand throughout the week, walking the floor and chatting up Marines and exhibitors. In conjuction with our sister newspaper, Defense News, we also will be live-blogging here throughout the week.

Every so often, it seems, the Marines-wear-beret rumor rears its head. Usually it’s when leathernecks get the chance to question or schmooze with senior brass. Back before the Army in 2001 standardized the beret for all soldiers, every so often some bold and usually gung-ho junior Marine would ask or suggest the wear of berets. No commandant or uniform board approved such an idea, however. Battle Rattle recalls a day back in the mid-‘90s, when a young Marine joined others greeting then-commandant Gen. Chuck Krulak on a ship’s mess decks asked the four-star general why Recon Marines couldn’t wear the…

css.php