Skip to comments.Gun Safety for Iraqis
Posted on 10/22/2005 5:05:47 PM PDT by strategofr
One interesting thing Americans discovered, while training Iraqi troops, is that most Iraqi men tend to be very familiar with firearms, especially the Russian AK-series. The country is cursed with an abundance of rifles and assault guns.
In some regions, these weapons are so common that even boys of 12 or so may have one. One would think that this would make training them relatively easy, but in fact it doesnt. While Iraqi recruits tend to know a lot about firearms, even to the extent that they can maintain them reasonably well, they dont know a thing about weapons safety.
Consider the Arab custom of firing their weapons into the air on happy occasions (they are called joy bullets in Arabic), often with deadly consequences. When someone is killed or injured by the bullets that, inevitably come back to earth, the injury is shrugged off, or blamed on a handy enemy (Palestinians blame Israelis, some Iraqis blame any armed foreigners in the vicinity, or nearby Iraqis they don't get along with).
Thus, American trainers quickly learned that safety training is very important for Iraqi recruits. Indeed, it was found that gun safety training needed far more emphasis for Iraqi troops than for Americans, who live in a culture of safety. Resistance to safety training by Iraqi recruits is pretty high, at least initially.
But once they understand the purpose, they become surprisingly good students, perhaps because they all know someone who lost a goat or a family member to a bullet that was simply obeying the law of gravity. The presence of Egyptian or Jordanian trainers is particularly helpful in accelerating the process of getting Iraqi recruits to accept firearms safety; as brother Arabs and Moslems. In this case theres less resistance to an infidel notion of being careful while using assault rifles.
First lesson I learned about guns. "Don't point that damn thing at anything or anyone you don't intend to shoot"! The lesson was reinforced if need be with physical reminders.
My dad talk me about firearm safety when I was growing up. I became much more safe after attending a course at Front Sight Firearm Training Institute. I would recommend anyone who owns a gun take a course there. They will only train you if you have a clean background though.
while this is a good lesson its not really too relevent in the situation...actually, these people are pointing at what they want to shoot, the sky. They don't quite understand that they will come down again.
By the way, I think they do understand the physics of it. It's like any stupid thing people do anywhere. Once you grab them by the shoulders and say "Yo! Stupido!", they start to get it, as the article illustrates.
1. ALL guns are ALWAYS loaded - even if you just visually confirmed that it isn't, it still is.
2. Never point a gun at anything you'd mind blowing a hole in. In general, that means keep it pointed down and front, away from all living things.
3. Keep your finger off the trigger until you are ready to fire - that means keep it out of the trigger-guard entirely until you are fixing to shoot.
4. Be sure of your target, what is between you and your target, and what is behind your target
5. Stand properly, breathe properly, AIM properly, and squeeze the trigger - let the BANG surprise you
gee... not so difficult
perhaps because they all know someone who lost a goat or a family member to a bullet ...
or perhaps a goat who WAS a family member...
--recalling reading that one of the problems in training Afgans was their reluctance to align the sights of the weapon, I wonder if this is true of Iraqis as well?
I wonder how much kinetic energy a round from an AK has, after being fired straight up??? Probably would be lethal...
(My source is Hatchers Notebook)---
Thanks! Urban legends...sheesh...
--the "straight up" is the key part--the stuff that does the damage in Detroit, etc., New Years Eve isn't fired straight up and remains lethal---
Two years ago, one of my co-workers was out rabbit hunting with a 410 shotgun. He didn't have the safety on, and as he was climbing over a fence, he pulled the trigger, hitting himself in the foot. Fortunately, it was only a 410, so the shell wasn't very large, and the range was less than eighteen inches, so the shot didn't have much of a chance to disperse before hitting him, creating a relatively small hole instead of a large one. The injury still required eighteen plus days in the hospital, three rounds of surgery, and continuing physical therapy.
if only it had gone off...
>I wonder how much kinetic energy a round from an AK has, >after being fired straight up??? Probably would be lethal..
Same velocity as when it left the barrel minus air resistance. First Year Newtonian Physics.
not that simple
"point-first and spinning" is a lot more dangerous than is "butt-first and tumbling"
How about a round musket ball?