Rocky Mount United Methodist Church decided what to do with the gully behind their church–they built a gun range and launched a gun range ministry “in the name of Jesus Christ.” Rocky Mount United Methodist is located in Jemison, Alabama. Pastor Phillip Guin said the church first thought of the range as a place to teach “gun safety.” Then, as involvement and interest grew, they decided to launch a full-blown gun range ministry. And because they have a number of hunters in the church, they named the range the “Rocky Mount Hunt and Gun Club.”
According to WIAT, Guin indicated another reason for the switch from simple gun safety to gun training was the increasing number of women who had bought guns for self-defense and needed practice in using them. He said, “We had quite a number of church members, some elderly ladies, for example, and some not so elderly women that had purchased guns, but didn’t know how to use them.” They can now learn on church grounds.
Standing by the range, Guin said, “This is an opportunity for us to reach out in the name of Jesus Christ in a setting that is completely unique. Even odd by some people’s standards. But who’s to say that church can’t happen right here.”
The Jemison Police Department is using the Rocky Mount Hunt and Gun Club as well and “[offering] training courses to the public.”
In a gravelly voice, it may recite a yarn of weary settlers swaying on horses’ backs in the parched, rocky Nevada wilderness. It may talk about riding in a saddle holster across neighboring Utah more than a decade before it became a state of the union. Great Basin National Park workers found the Winchester Model 1873 propped against a tree in the desert in November. The gun was manufactured and shipped in 1882 but little else is known about its history. It will be preserved in its current condition and put on display at the park for its 30th anniversary next year. (PHOTO: U.S. National Park Service)
Who knows how many years the rifle stood there, after someone left behind the model called “the gun that won the West.” Did they have to depart in a hurry — running from danger?
Or did they not see it, as it stood neatly camouflaged against the arid trunk of the juniper tree?
Wind, snow, desert sun have beaten years of furrows into the Winchester’s grayed stock, and rusted its barrel brown, along with its receiver and signature figure-8 repeating lever.
But its model name remains steadfastly engraved on its tang, along with a serial number. The Great Basin National Park’s staff checked it against the Cody West Firearms Museum’s records.
The gun was manufactured and shipped in 1882, the museum told them. “Winchester records do not indicate who purchased the rifle from the warehouse or where it was shipped,” the park said on its Facebook page.
Cultural researchers will try to squeeze out a few more secrets about the gun’s history from old newspapers and family trees. Then conservationists will not restore, but conserve it in the condition in which was found. It will become part of the display commemorating the park’s 30th birthday in 2016.
The 1873 model was widespread. Between 1873 and 1916, more than 760,000 were made, the park said. Today, collectors offer hundreds to around 10,000 dollars for one online.
But in 1882, the price dropped by half to $25 dollars apiece, the Park said.
It put them in the hands of many towards the end of “Indian Wars” in the Southwest. But those battles were mostly in surrounding states, particularly fights against Apache warriors who refused to be confined to reservations in Arizona.
That would seem a safe distance away. The spot where the gun was found in the Great Basin Desert could hardly be more in the middle of nowhere.
The United Nations’ human rights chief called on the United States Tuesday to enforce more effective gun control measures in the aftermath of the Orlando terrorist attack, dismissing as “irresponsible pro-gun propaganda” the notion that firearms make societies safer. U.N. human rights commissioner urged the U.S. government to live up to its obligations to protect citizens from the “horrifyingly commonplace but preventable violent attacks that are the direct result of insufficient gun control.”
“Examples from many countries clearly show that a legal framework to control the acquisition and use of firearms has led to a dramatic reduction in violent crime,” he said.
“In the United States, however, there are hundreds of millions of guns in circulation, and every year thousands of people are killed or injured by them.”
He deplored what he called the ease with which individuals can buy firearms in America – “in spite of prior criminal backgrounds, drug use, histories of domestic violence and mental illness, or direct contact with extremists – both domestic and foreign.”
“How many more mass killings of school-children, of co-workers, of African-American churchgoers, how many more individual shootings of talented musicians like Christina Grimmie, or politicians like Gabrielle Giffords, will it take before the United States adopts robust gun regulation?” he asked.
American Omar Mateen killed 49 people early Sunday morning at a gay nightclub in Orlando, in a terrorist attack that quickly stoked fresh debate about gun control.
President Obama’s early response to the shooting included the view that it was “a further reminder of how easy it is for someone to get their hands on a weapon that lets them shoot people in a school, or in a house of worship, or a movie theater, or in a nightclub.”
“And we have to decide if that’s the kind of country we want to be,” the president added. “And to actively do nothing is a decision as well.”
Others contend that had some nightclub goers been legally armed, they may have been able to stop the terrorist.
The U.N.’s chief challenged the thinking behind that view.
“Irresponsible pro-gun propaganda suggests that firearms make society safer, when all evidence points to the contrary,” he said.
He cited a recent report from his office on the question of human rights and civilian access to firearms. Its conclusions include a call for governments to regulate the acquisition and possession of firearms.
“Human rights law requires [member] States to protect people from harmful private activities and to adopt appropriate regulatory and institutional frameworks,” the report reads.
“In the light of the harmful impact of firearms-related violence on a range of human rights, the High Commissioner reiterates the call of United Nations and regional human rights mechanisms for States to regulate the civilian acquisition, possession and use of firearms.”
“I urge everyone in the United States to rally around the common cause of ensuring that the human rights, and consequentially the security, of all are strengthened in the aftermath of this horrendous incident,” he said.
LAS VEGAS – A gunman and his underage driver tried to rob a group of people playing the popular Pokemon GO game, triggering a shootout after one of the players pulled out his own weapon at a Las Vegas park that has become a hot spot for virtual creature hunting. The incident early Monday marked the latest illustration of unintended consequences in everyday life due to the booming popularity of the GPS-powered “augmented reality” game.
Las Vegas police spokeswoman Laura Meltzer said the shooting left a Pokemon player and the would-be armed robber hospitalized with non-life threatening injuries. Charges are expected against both that suspect and the juvenile who was driving the SUV.
Shortly after 4 a.m., a group of six people were at a public park east of downtown playing the popular smartphone game, which sends players to physical locations to “catch” virtual Pokemon characters.
Police said an armed man and the young driver drove up to the group in an SUV and demanded their possessions at gunpoint. One of the Pokemon players who has a concealed weapons permit drew his own gun and the two sides exchanged fire.
One person in the Pokemon group was shot once in the stomach and taken to the hospital. Meltzer said it’s unclear if that person shot is also the player who had his own gun but that the group of local players knew each other.
The man believed to be the suspect also was treated at the hospital for a gunshot wound. How he got to the hospital is not clear, but a matching SUV was found there.
Facebook users in a few Pokemon GO groups have suggested the location of the shooting, Gary Reese Freedom Park, as a hotspot for a particular kind of pocket monster known as Magikarp. In postings about nearby parks that are good places to catch specific kinds of Pokemon, the park is noted as a good place to collect the fish-like creature.
Police haven’t cited a motive or said if the Pokemon players were targeted.
But this isn’t the first report of suspects trying to rob people engrossed in the hugely-popular Pokemon GO game. Four teens in St. Louis robbed victims earlier this month after luring them to a specific location using Pokemon GO.
Grandmother. General manager. Gun goddess — on Twitter, anyway.Meet Tracey Wilson, the Orléans chairwoman of the board of the recently formed Canadian Coalition for Firearm Rights. Her message is simple: Gun-owners are your neighbours, law-abiding hunters and sport-shooters. They’re not, as she puts it, pot-bellied guys drinking beer and blasting shotguns from four-wheelers, so legislating them does nothing to combat crime.
The engaging Wilson — who manages a law firm, shoots competitively and hunts her own meat — borrows the language of social justice activists when talking about the need to “reduce stigma” and battle “stereotypes.”
“It’s about time that we came out of the closet,” Wilson said, pointing to what she estimates are 2.5 million legal gun owners in Canada.
“If we had a problem with that here, you’d know it. We don’t.”
The CCFR began operations last fall just as the Liberal government was elected with a mandate to strengthen rules that gun-control advocates say were weakened under the Conservatives.
During the election campaign, the Liberals said they would boost background checks for anyone buying restricted weapons such as handguns, reverse a move putting Cabinet — not police — in charge of deciding what firearms are restricted, and require vendors to keep track of their inventory and sales to help police.
“There’s always been a need for something a little more sophisticated, a little more media-savvy,” Wilson said. “Regardless of what government is in power, the whole attitude towards firearms ownership needs to be revamped. That’s where we come in.”
The group, which argues many Canadians have opinions about gun control without understanding current law — is making public service announcements, being interviewed by Vice Media and planning a national day of action on big-city streets.
“Firearms owners get it — so you’re preaching to the choir when you’re pounding your fist and stomping your feet and making demands about your rights,” Wilson said. “The minds and hearts you need to change are everyday people, the non-gun owning community, the politicians, the media. That’s who your target audience needs to be. Hardline action doesn’t really appeal to most of them.
“Not a softer approach by any means — we don’t back down, either — but we needed to look at a broader scope of getting the message out.”
The country’s best-known gun control advocate’s response is blunt.
“I think it’s putting lipstick on a pig — it’s still basically a pig but they (CCFR) certainly are more sophisticated and professional than some of the organizations we’ve seen in the past,” said Coalition for Gun Control president Wendy Cukier.
Gun facts by the numbers
2,026,011 – firearms licences in Canada, 2015
795,854 – registered restricted firearms in Canada
182,493 – registered prohibited firearms, which can be “grandfathered”
19,698 – licences per 100,000 population in Yukon, the highest in Canada, 2014
4,362 – licences per 100,000 population in Ontario, the lowest in Canada
2,347 – licences revoked in 2015 following “continuous eligibility screening” or by court order
688 – firearm possession licences refused for reasons including a history of violence, mental illness or drug offences
156 – firearm-related homicides in Canada in 2014, which was 24 more than the year before but translated into the second lowest rate since 1974
75% – of gun deaths are suicides
Source: RCMP Canadian Firearms Program, Statistics Canada
She argued the new group makes old arguments — ranging from the implication that there’s any right to own guns in Canada, a “uniquely American” concept rejected by our courts, to the implication that legally bought guns aren’t used in crime.
On a recent golden summer afternoon, the .22 rounds pop, pop, pop through a fluttering paper target, dust exploding in the sun against trees as far as you can see.
It smells like baking earth and gunpowder at the members-only Eastern Ontario Shooting Club just past the city’s eastern limits, billed as one of the largest in the province.
Wilson laughs at another stereotype people may have: that the home of Parliament Hill is no hotbed of firearm enthusiasts.
“Which is hilarious, because the ranges in Ottawa aren’t accepting new members because they’re packed,” she said. “There’s waiting lists. People go up to their cottages, hunt camps, Crown land. There’s a lot more firearms owners in big centres, and especially Ottawa, than they think.”
She expertly loads a .22 rifle as she makes her case in the CCFR’s new public relations campaign.
At issue are 25-round magazines that fit in the commonly-owned 10/22 Ruger rifle but are now prohibited, unless “pinned” to hold fewer bullets because they can also be used in the relatively-rare Ruger Charger pistol introduced in 2007.
There are no magazine limits for the rifle but magazines that fit handguns are prohibited devices if they hold more than 10 rounds.
“Approximately a million magazines in Canada are suddenly prohibited and 100,000 people are paper criminals,” Wilson said. “Legislation should be geared towards public safety – there hasn’t been any public safety problem.”
The CCFR spread the word about the “impending” change on Facebook last month and urged people to pepper the country’s Chief Firearms Officer with calls. “Now we have a fight on our hands,” read another post. “Are you with us?”
But according to a spokesman for the minister of public safety, the RCMP bulletin about the regulation of the magazines came out in 2013.
“This is being characterized as something new — it’s not,” said a spokesman for Ralph Goodale, whose mandate letter includes working to boost controls on handguns and assault weapons, including by repealing some elements of the previous government’s Bill C-42.
The CCFR, meanwhile, wants all magazine capacity restrictions eliminated. Among its other policies is that letting people — those trained, screened and licensed — to concealed carry is “a significant benefit to society.”
“I think I should have the right to defend myself,” Wilson explained. “It’s the equalizer if you’re attacked. I’m a single woman. I live alone with a 14-year-old child. I’m trained. I’m certified. I’m proficient with my firearm.
“How does having it in a concealed-carry holster under my shirt affect anyone else? It’s not me committing crimes — it’s criminals. And they carry them whether we want them to or not.”
The CCFR’s board of directors were among the first to sign an e-petition asking the federal government to reverse the decision to restrict the AR-15 rifle. The petition calls it “the most versatile hunting rifle in the world” and charges the decision was made purely on how it looks. (Cukier calls it a military assault weapon.)
The petition was signed by more than 25,000 people but Goodale rejected the idea in June, saying he trusted the judgement of RCMP experts about the gun, the same one used in the Newtown, Conn. mass shooting.
How you get a gun in Canada
- Firearms owners are licensed, like drivers, but only restricted and prohibited weapons have to be registered like cars and linked to their owners by a centralized database — the analogy of the RCMP;
- Would-be gun owners take the Canadian Firearms Safety Course — which usually takes a day and covers topics including safe handling, storage and transportation and gun care — before writing a multiple-choice exam and handling test;
- Those who want to own restricted firearms take an additional course and test and have to get authorizations to transport their guns;
- The RCMP says their standard for processing an application for a gun license — which includes background checks — is 45 days;
- New applications face a 28-day waiting period;
- Non-restricted firearms include “ordinary” rifles and shotguns;
- Restricted firearms, mostly non-prohibited handguns but also semi-automatic, centre-fire rifles and shotguns with barrels shorter than 470 mm, and rifles and shotguns that can be fired when their overall length has been reduced by folding, telescoping or another means to less than 660 mm;
- Prohibited firearms include handguns with a barrel that’s less than 105 mm long and those that fire .25- or .32-calibre bullets, except for a few models used by sport shooters, sawed-off rifles and shotguns and fully automatic weapons;
- Businesses and organizations that produce, sell, possess, handle, display or store guns or ammunition have to be licensed.
It was the same month the CCFR had its general meeting in Ottawa with city councillors George Darouze of Osgoode Ward and Jody Mitic of Innes Ward as guests.
Mitic — a decorated Afghanistan veteran who defended tweets about buying his-and-hers Sig Sauer pistols — signed a copy of his book, Unflinching: The Making of a Canadian Sniper, for every attendee.
Wilson won’t say how many members the CCFR have signed up but said they’ve been “overwhelmed” with interest. There is a lobbyist in their ranks but no current plan to lobby government, she said.
It’s volunteer-run and funded by memberships and donations, not cash from gun-makers, Wilson insisted, although business members include gunsmiths, firearm suppliers and training firms.
Canada has almost no gun manufacturers but there are plenty of people with commercial interests in guns and shooting sports, said gun-control advocate Cukier.
“When you see groups that are increasingly sophisticated, that is one of the questions you have to ask — where is the money coming from?” she said.
She is also skeptical that the CCFR will have any impact on the attitudes of Canadians — the majority of whom (83 per cent according to a Forum Research poll released last month) don’t own guns.
For example, the rationale for magazine size restrictions is that being able to fire repeatedly without reloading increases the potential damage a firearm can do if misused, she said.
Polls show most Canadians don’t object to having guns to hunt or target shoot, for example, but some competitive shooters act out commando-like scenarios that make bigger magazines an advantage, she said.
“I can’t see Canadians feeling gun owners are hard done by because they can’t have large capacity magazines when on the risk side we’ve seen the consequences of those firearms in the wrong hands,” Cukier said.
While guns that are smuggled — mostly from the United States — are a problem, about one-third of the handguns recovered in crime were either sold illegally, stolen or misused by the legal owner, Cukier said.
Meanwhile, there are guns currently sold in Canada that would be illegal under U.S. assault rifle bans. The number of restricted and prohibited weapons in this country has almost doubled in a decade.
“That’s partly a function of the relaxation of controls during the Conservative regime as well as relaxation of the implementation of the law,” Cukier said. “There are a number of judges who have stood up and said that we are not applying the law as rigorously as we should — that’s largely a function of the ‘Guns don’t kill people, people with guns kill’ mentality.”
So while Wilson argued that “many Canadians will express an opinion on gun control without even knowing what the current laws are,” Cukier maintains what Canadians really don’t understand are the “gaping holes” in the system.
After 1977, if someone wanted to buy a Ruger Mini-14 — the gun used in the Montreal Massacre — the gun dealer would have to record who they sold the gun to and the serial number, Cukier said.
The big green books were replaced by the much-criticized federal long-gun registry in 1995 but when it was scrapped in 2012, they didn’t make a comeback.
“You can go to a gun dealer and buy 25 Ruger Mini-14s and they don’t even have to legally write down the fact that you bought 25 Ruger Mini-14s,” Cukier said. “So there is no record at all of unrestricted firearms being sold.”
A Coalition for Gun Control poll during the election campaign showed that the vast majority of Canadians across the country wanted to track gun sales and prohibit military-style weapons, Cukier said. Nor do Canadians understand that while their country has more robust controls than most U.S. states, we lag countries in Europe, Australia and New Zealand.
“I often say my problem is not the opponents of gun control — they are vastly outnumbered by supporters of gun control,” Cukier said.
“The problem is supporters of gun control are not as passionate and engaged. So the advocates for gun control might be police, victims, physicians who deal with suicide victims, women’s groups that are dealing with women who are threatened with firearms, but the average person does not lobby politicians and donate money based on their support for gun control.”
The Olypics are almost over. We’ve had our fair-share of heart wrenching origin stories. We’ve been swimming in gold medal celebrations and record breaking accomplishments. But there’s one story from this set of games that has left us wondering: where’s the love?
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Kim Rhode is the FIRST WOMAN and (not insignificantly) the first Summer Olympian to medal in SIX consecutive Olympics. You’d think the glass ceiling crowd would be all over that, right? Not so much. See Rhode doesn’t wear a hijab. She is an outspoken supporter of the 2nd Amendment. And, most controversially, she won all six medals with a gun.
Let’s look at those numbers again. Six summer Olympics. Since they only happen every four years, we can assume Rhode has been winning for 20 years. Winning medals for 20 straight years. But her impressive career stretches farther back than that.
Rhode began competing in skeet at age 10 and at 13, won her first world championship title in women’s double trap shooting.
And then came the Olympics:
At the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, Rhode won a gold medal, making her the youngest female gold medalist in the history of Olympic shooting.
At the 2000 Olympics in Sydney, Australia, Rhode won a bronze medal.
At the 2004 Olympics in Athens, Greece, Rhode also won a gold medal.
At the 2008 Olympics, Rhode won the silver medal in women’s skeet.
In 2012, Rhodes again dominated the Olympic games. Rhode won the gold medal in skeet shooting with an Olympic record score of 99, and tied.
At that point, Rhode was the only American competitor to win medals for an individual event in five Olympics. She was one of three competitors (and the only woman) to win three Olympic individual gold medals for shooting. That sets the bar pretty high, for sure–but her career wasn’t over.
The 2016 games are just winding down, and Rhode is coming home with more precious metal. She won the bronze in women’s skeet, and this has fueled speculation that, after six sets of games, she might be ready to retire.
The question remains: Where’s the love?
What do we have to do to get someone like Rhode the coverage she deserves?
In what many a fan of the platform will exclaim “Finally!”, the aftermarket has stepped up with firing-hand compatible tube selector for the Kel-Tec KSG bullpup shotgun. The product of a Plymoth, Massachusetts company called “Solutions De Innovation LLC” the “Feed Tube Selector Switch” (FTSS) was designed to solve a weapons manipulation problem that has beset the KSG since its introduction.
The problem is the dual tube architecture of the KSG do not automatically switch over to the other tube upon expenditure of its ammunition. Touted as a “feature” allowing the shooter to switch between two types of ammunition, practically it is pain in the arse. Few users would load different tubes with different ammunition, especially with the loads being so different (say non-lethal and buck-shot or slugs and bird-shot). As such, KSG users had to train themselves to count rounds or swap tubes upon an empty chamber.
The FTSS replaces the standard tube selector by extending below the ejection port and through an elbow, putting a lever near the firing hand. The knob at the end is shooting-hand accessible, so one can “seamlessly” swap to the second tube.
Retail for the piece is set at $96.50. It is steel constructed, with a final blued finish. It has a lifetime warranty, including shipping and handling reimbursement. Those interested can pick one up at the ShotgunSwitch.com store.
The FTSS is patent pending.
There are two basic ways to look at banning weapons in war. The first, humanitarian view is that that war should be as “humane” as possible, limiting death only to intended targets, and delivered as quickly and painlessly as possible. With, of course, the possibility of rescue or recovery. Weapons banned in war inflict undue destruction on civilians.
1. Mustard Gas
The terror of the trenches in World War I, mustard gas gets its name from its yellow-brown color and its odor, which is apparently similar to horseradish. Because it’s heavier than air, mustard gas proved particularly effective in clearing trenches, and was almost single-handedly responsible for the 1928 Geneva Conventions. When inhaled, the gas causes the lungs to fill with fluid, essentially drowning the victim in their own fluids. If they were hit with a bomb filled with mustard gas or dosed from the air soldiers were told to pee into their handkerchiefs and breath through those until they could escape or the gas dissipated.
2. Nerve Gas
Nerve gases of all kinds have been systematically outlawed by both the Hague and Geneva from 1899 all the way up to 1993. All nerve agents (like Sarin, VX, Tabun, and Soman) work in the same basic way: By blocking blocking the enzyme that normally destroys a very important neurotransmitter. Basically, nerve agents cause your entire nervous system to malfunction, like an electrical system full of short circuits. Death generally comes as a result of a shutdown of the respiratory system, but not before painful blisters, boils, and internal hemmorrhaging occur.
3. Phosgene Gas
While mustard gas might have gotten all the press, phosgene was actually responsible for about 85% of all chemical weapons deaths in World War I. Simple and cheap to produce in large quantities, phosgene damages the proteins in the lungs, causing them to break down, meaning the lungs stop exchanging oxygen. It’s a particularly insidious gas, since it’s colorless, almost odorless, and symptoms can take a long time to show up. Japan continued to use phosgene well into WWII on at least 375 separate occasions, generally against the Chinese.
4. Tear Gas
Believe it or not, the tear gas that police routinely shoot into crowds in America is technically outlawed for use in war by the Hague Convention. Even though it’s generally non-lethal, tear gas is still an inhalant chemical weapon that obstructs breathing, that puts it in the same legal class as mustard gas. For more info on the lethality you should check into some of the Russian Special Ops tactics when dealing with terrorists… So: legal to shoot at protesters in Missouri, but not legal to drop on a machine gun nest in Afghanistan. Go figure.
5. Pepper Spray
Same story as tear gas. Technically, pepper spray is an aerosol chemical weapon that disrupts breathing, which is outlawed by the Hague Convention.
6. Plastic Landmines
According to Protocol I of the 1979 Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons, weapons that use non-metallic fragments not detectable by X-Ray are prohibited in war. The rationale is pretty obvious, since field surgeons can’t remove fragments they can’t locate within an injured body. This doesn’t prohibit the use of plastic and undetectable materials in weapon design, it just means that weapons can’t be designed to use undetectable fragments as a primary damage device.
7. Spike Pits
These old fashioned death traps are technically prohibited or regulated by Protocol II of the 1979 Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons. Pits with sharpened bamboo spikes maimed thousands of soldiers in Vietnam and in the Pacific during WWII. Adding insult to injury, the Vietcong and Japanese would routinely roll those spikes in human or animal feces first, causing secondary infections after even the smallest scratch. That, in itself, is a direct violation of the 1907 Hague convention on biological weapons and might even violate the 1675 Strasbourg Agreement. Suffice it to say it violates a lot of conventions, agreements and accords. Still fun to upercut your opponent into in Mortal Kombat though…
According to Protocol III of the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons, flamethrowers aren’t explicitly forbidden on the battlefield, provided the battlefield is nowhere near civilians. Mostly, this protocol refers to incendiary devices in and around civilian areas. It doesn’t necessarily prohibit the use of flamethrowers in, say, an open tank battle or clearing caves in Afghanistan. But most guerrilla fighters hide behind or within civilian areas. If they’re using human shields or might have captives flamethrowers are a no-go. They are also incredibly easy to improvise. Basically any controlled release of accelerant + fire is a flamethrower by definition.
You might love the smell of napalm in the morning, but the same Protocol III (passed after Vietnam) that restricts the use of flamethrowers also limits the use of napalm. It can’t be used anywhere near civilian targets, nor can it be used to burn down forests unless the trees are being used to conceal military combatants or vehicles. So, napalm isn’t banned, exactly, but more often than not, it can’t be used on today’s battlefields.
10. Poisoned Bullets
The world’s oldest known arms agreement, the Strasbourg Agreement of 1675, explicitly outlawed the use of poisoned bullets. The first guns used in warfare weren’t terribly accurate, so soldiers would often supplement the lack of accuracy by soaking their bullets in some kind of poisonous or infectious substance. It was not unheard of for legions of soldiers to stow their bullet caches inside rotting corpses, though the bottom of a latrine pit worked just as well. When France and the Holy Roman Empire went to war, they initially experienced a massive wave of casualties not from gunshot wounds, but from subsequent infection. More than 250 years would pass before Geneva once again addressed chemical and biological weapons.
11. Balloon Bombs
Yes, you’re reading that correctly – according to the 1898 Hague Convention, it is against international law to drop bombs from balloons. Originally proposed in 1898, the prohibition against the “the discharge of any kind of projectile or explosive from balloons or by similar means” went into effect at the 1907 Peace Conference as a probationary measure to be resolved during the third conference. However, the third Hague peace conference never met, because of a slight case of world war. Japan famously sent scores of balloon bombs to the American Pacific Coast during WWII, with the purpose of causing forest fires. While most landed harmlessly, one did cause casualties – a balloon that landed in a forest near Bly, Oregon, that exploded and killed a Sunday school teacher and five children. The practice of shooting a rifle or dropping a bomb from a balloon is still technically forbidden to this day.
12. Locusts, Fleas and Rats
Don’t laugh too hard – it’s been done, and to sometimes devastating effect. The Black Plague is theorized by some to be the result of a lingering bio-terror attack from Asia. Today, using hordes or plagues of animals carrying disease in war would be completely illegal.
13. Bat Bombs
In the second world war, Americans experimented with a secret weapon designed to decimate Japanese cities. At the time, most of Japan’s cities were made of wood and paper. The idea was to release a bomb filled with sleeping bats (captured from caves in New Mexico), wearing collars containing a napalm-like incendiary. Upon release at dawn, the bats would disperse and roost under the eaves of Japanese homes up to 40 miles away. The project, code-named “X-Ray,” was tested in 1944, but the war effectively ended with the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. It might sound funny today, but testing showed these unusual weapons to be tremendously effective…some say even more so than the A-Bomb. Today, bat bombs would certainly be prohibited under Protocol III of the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons.
14. Smallpox Blankets
While America in general has avoided the use of biological and chemical weapons, many historians agree that we did make at least one attempt at genocide through bio-weaponry. America’s “manifest destiny” meant getting rid of the original inhabitants of the continent. Many were killed by bullets and blades, but far more were wiped out as a result of diseases introduced by Europeans. Coming from a center of worldwide trade, Europeans developed at least partial immunity to many diseases, while themselves remaining carriers. Where Europeans went, plague almost always followed, helping to exterminate native populations and assisting in conquest. While such bio-terrorism was often unintentional, history has recorded a few instances where it was deliberately used as a weapon of war. Especially after we started to understand the nature of germs and disease. This quote from Commander Jeffrey Amherst (1717 to 1797) pretty much sums it up: “You will do well to try to inoculate the Indians, by means of blankets, as well as to try every other method that can serve to extirpate this execrable race.”
15. Salted Bombs
Salted bombs are very similar in concept to dirty bombs, but are true nuclear weapons created specifically for the purpose of shorter-term area denial. A “salted” nuke contains an isotope of another substance like cobalt, gold, zinc, or sodium. During a nuclear blast, these elements become a huge cloud of fallout. These types of weapons are the same type used in the Soviet “Doomsday Device” from Dr. Strangelove. Small, one kiloton salted nukes could be used tactically and made so that the radioactive fallout decayed in a year or two, thus denying large swaths of land to enemy forces for a time. But radiation is invisible, and these weapons are generally prohibited because of their potential lethality to civilians.
Every competitive shooter wants a recoil-less rifle. With the Saiga MK-107, or “recoil-less AK” we’re getting closer to that dream. Translated from Russian: “The new Russian Saiga MK-107 is a semi-automatic gas operated rifle with recoil-mitigating balanced action. This means that rifle features two gas pistons, entering a single gas block above the barrel from opposite directions.”
It is said to be released by the end of 2016, but that has been said for the last 2-3 years now.
As you can see for the left vs right picture, the muzzle brake (recoil compensator) is canted, a common modification to further reduce the recoil and keep the rifle in the “A” zone.
The Saiga MK-107 shot by Russian IPSC shooter Oleg Rybalki.
It looks extremely stable I have to say. It looks like the exact same rifle, looking at themuzzle brake.
The RWC (Rifle World Shoot 2017) will be held at “Patriot Range”, which has 31 stages up to 300 meters and 1 stage up to 800 meters long. There are also a multi-story indoor shooting range which looks very promising.
Above: The official logo of the First Rifle World Championship 2017
Here are a few other Russian AK-rifles from one of their 3 Gun competitions. I’m not sure enough to identify these versions, but the first one has a Swarovski Z6i on top. I would surely prefer a much lower mount.
The shooter is Alёna Karelinalёna, part of the Lady Kalashnikov team and two times champion of Russia. and World champion 2015 in IPSC Shotgun. A real Nikita!
Another Russian shooter with the same AK.
3 Gun Russian style.
Yet another AK with modifications.
I’m sure we will see the AK-107 in the hands of the top Russian competitive shooters very soon.
Pretty cool gif I found. Hope it helps.
For any number of reasons, a seemingly perfect gun can go boom and come apart. Want to know the lesson you should learn with each of these photos? Know your weapon, and treat every gun like a powerful tool of destruction. Let’s look at some pictures of catastrophic gun failures.
From what appears to be a faulty German military surplus cartridge, this rifle disintegrated!
This Colt Anaconda in .44 Magnum may have been done in by a bad hand reloaded cartridge. Double powder charge?
A Glock Model 21 .45 acp. pistol appears to have been destroyed using faulty hand loaded ammunition.
If you handload your own, watch your overall length and powder charge weights. Never shoot someone else’s handloads. Their mistake is your bodily injury or at least a broken gun.