From Strategy Page via Gunpundit, the Army has gone ahead and procured 20k more M9 pistols for TACOM (Tank and Automotive Command). The article at Strategy Page then goes on to bash the M9 for the usual specious reasons; and then proceeds to make the following reference, and really just toss any credibility right out.
What resulted was the Mk 23 SOCOM. This .45 caliber pistol has a 12-round clip
I’m not normally a nazi about proper terminology, but come on. It’s a magazine. This is an article that other people will read. The word here is magazine. Of course, the article doesn’t stop there and goes on to sound very much like it was written by an HK fanboy who doesn’t know a whole lot about military unit procurement. For example:
But when the other guy is likely to shoot back, you want as much knock down power as you can get. Thus cops who shoot a lot, prefer 10mm and larger calibers (like the 11.4mm .45). The Special Forces, and SOCOM in general, have the authority to get any weapons they think they need, with no interference from anyone. SOCOM has lots of small unit operations that use pistols. The SOCOM operators believe that the 9mm pistol is not adequate, thus the adoption of the Mk23.
Activate: SNARK MODE. Really? Knock down power? And man oh man my favorite line about how SOCOM operators can get whatever weapons they want without asking permission, I love it when that one is repeated, because all you have to do is look at the SEALs and see that their standard issued sidearm is a…wait for it…wait for it…9mm Sig Sauer P226.
Now, I’m not knocking the .45. The Marines Expeditionary Units carry 1911s in .45, and they love it, and I think it’s a great gun as well. However, the reason I think it’s a great gun is not because of the caliber, but rather the package that it’s in. You put that .45 ACP in a 1911 and it becomes one of the most user friendly and shootable guns on god’s green earth.
But back to the issue at hand – it is nice to see that the Army is making sure that their tank and vehicle guys at the very least have new M9s, are aren’t being issued ones that have been all shot to pieces in the various combat theatres we’re in right now.