By James Smith
14 Sept 2012
Surprise! The DHS Immigration and Customs Enforcement have requested more sniper ammunition.
However, it is the type of ammunition and not necessarily the quantity that is troubling.
First on the agenda is the .223 rifle ammunition. Just a measly 40 million rounds in the first year, and another 160 million rounds in the following four years. 200,00 million rounds in total. You know, just enough to make you cringe thinking that some government office that is not military has more ammunition than you do.
The .223 caliber round is a decent hunting round, but that is not the rounds to be concerned about.
The .308 rounds should have you a bit concerned. Quite a bit concerned.
The blank ammunition will be spread to five different locations in the American south east and in Puerto Rico. The regular sniper ammunition will be spread all over the US in a variety of places.
Blank ammunition? Why blank ammunition?
Well, as it turns out blank ammunition is fantastic for putting on a show. Blank ammunition is used in theatrics (hmmm?) but also is used to help teach new shooters to develop trigger and breathing control.
Nevertheless, have no fear; DHS only needs 25,000 rounds to develop good sniper skills.
Because, they have also ordered 176,000 rounds of the .308 caliber hollow point boat tail (HPBT) sniper ammunition rounds.
Boat tail ammunition is incredibly accurate sniper ammunition. From the legal opinion from the US Navy JAG in support of using hollow point ammunition:
[?]marksmanship training units have established unequivocally the superior accuracy of the M852 [M852 is the Sierra MatchKing 168-grain match grade boat tail, ogival spitzer tip bullet with an open tip]. Army tests noted a 36% improvement in accuracy with the M852 at 300 meters, and a 32% improvement at 600 yds; Marine Corps figures were twenty-eight percent accuracy improvement at 300 m, and 20% at 600yds. The National Guard determined that the M852 provided better bullet groups at 200 and 600 yards under all conditions than did the M118. [FNa1]
The good news
One of the theories posited by so many commentators is the extremely large amount of ammunition purchased by the DHS. According to the same legal opinion, it is because trained soldiers are horrible sharpshooters:
Statistics from past wars suggest that this probability figure may be optimistic. In World War II, the United States and its allies expended 25,000 rounds of ammunition to kill a single enemy soldier. In the Korean War, the ammunition expenditure had increased four-fold to 100,000 rounds per soldier; in the Vietnam War, that figure had doubled to 200,000 rounds of ammunition for the death of a single enemy soldier. The risk to noncombatants is apparent.
Working the math out, that comes to only 7,600 people that DHS wants to kill, using the Korean War numbers. What luck!
The bad news
However, all of the “sniper” grade ammunition is being used by trained, or in-the-process-of-being-trained snipers.The same legal opinion found that:
In contrast, United States Army and Marine Corps snipers in the Vietnam War expended 1.3 rounds of ammunition for each claimed and verified kill, at an average range of six hundred yards, or almost twice the three hundred meters cited above for combat engagements by the average soldier. Some verified kills were at ranges in excess of 1000 yards. This represents discrimination and military efficiency of the highest order, as well as minimization of risk to noncombatants. Utilization of a bullet that increases accuracy, such as the MatchKing, would further diminish the risk to noncombatants.
And that math comes out to be 135,384 potential kills for the snipers to make, using the 176,000 rounds of ammunition.
Still the best – 12/5/2010
I made a 4 shot 1/4 MOA open sight group @ 200M yesterday 12/4/10 at Okeechobee Shooting Sports with a NM M1A, using a fwd rest, on a 12″ Dirty Bird Target. I purchased and shot for comparison; 308 SSA 175 Gr match ammo, Buffalo Bore .308 175 Gr. “Sniper”,7.62 AE 168 Gr. M1A, and another Mfr.’s 7.62 M118LR in this rifle, a scoped M40 and a Remington 700TWS on the same range with the same results. Nothing comes close to the M118 offered here. Period.
And this is a fuller explanation of why boat tail ammunition is used:
The guys did get it right that it is a bullet with a very, very small hollow point and a taper at the end that resembles the stern of a sailboat.
When a bullet flies though the air it needs to pierce the air in front – and at speeds faster than 1080 feet per second they create a vacuum on the end. The vacuum is a force that pulls the bullet in the wrong dircton……. having a boat tail creates a smaller vacuum and the bullet looses speed at a slower rate.
HPBT bullets have a very thin copper jacket. They are not designed for hunting because they radically expand when the hit anything. Send a HPBT into the rear quarter of a deer – it will expand and turn the whole quarter into a black jelly plasma – shell shock meat – totally useless.
In the hands of a skilled marksman – you can use a HPBT for a broadside shot at great distance – works awesome on caribou at 500 yards.
In the hands of military sniper – the design of a HPBT allows them to hit targets beyond the normal 600 yard limit that hunting bullets all have.
HPBT are pretty useless against light armor – FMJ will penetrate 2x to 4x more.
Bullets come in two flavors – ones with a cannelure, ones without. We use a taper crimp to hold the non-cannuleure to the brass for use in semi-auto rifles……….and a roll crimp on bullets with a cannelure for sue in semi-auto rifles. The cannelure is just a small series of ridges and have nothing what so ever to do with penetration.
One last tidbit. HPBT bullets have a special speed where the perform unusually well – 2850fps – you will notice that nearly all loaded ammo with these bullets from 308 to 50BMG go this speed.
Hope this helps. http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20110706185608AA6F4lK
As long as you are aware of what is being purchased, and for what probable reason it may be purchased for, you will not be taken by surprise when it happens.
The DHS needs to have an honest and open conversation with America as to the Department?s intentions with the sniper ammunition. Civilian, i.e. The Public, should have complete oversight of the actions of DHS and the agencies within its purview.
Anything less is a step towards tyranny.