25 Interesting Facts about Military Weapons

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1 Handflammpatrone


For years the German military had a parge single shot flamethrower pistol called the “Handflammpatrone”. It was capable of firing a flaming grenade 90 meters, laying a 15 meter wide flame over a 50-meter long area along the way.

2. The Lee-Enfield rifle has been in active service with at least one military since 1895 (currently still used by the Canadian Rangers).

3. The modern assault rifle SA80 used by British forces still allows for fixed bayonets, which is rare in modern rifles. Orders commanding soldiers to fix bayonets, in heavy fighting, has happened multiple times in the modern wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

4. The US Military has a laser rifle called the PHASR rifle, which disorients and temporarily blinds the target. It also looks like Storm Rifle in Halo 4.

5. The Soviets produced an assault rifle, the TKB-517 that was more reliable and accurate, and easier to produce and maintain than the AK-47. It was only rejected because of a greater proficiency with the AK-47 among the Russian military.

6 FP-45 Liberator

FP-45 Liberator

The FP-45 Liberator was an extremely cheap single shot pistol, which was developed by the US military to be airdropped in occupied territories during World War 2. It was intended for use by resistance forces fighting axis powers.

7. In 1967, a then-classified Army report showed that out of 1,585 troops questioned, 80% experienced a stoppage while firing the M16 rifle. This occurred while the Army insisted to the public that it was the best rifle available for fighting in Vietnam.

8. One of the weapons U.S.A. would have used in the planned invasion of Japan was Little David, a 36 inch (914mm) mortar used to test aerial bombs. Converted into a mobile siege gun, it fired 3650 lb (1600 kg) shells at a range of 6 miles and would have been the largest caliber gun ever fielded.

9. The US Army during World War 2 developed a grenade (T13 Beano Grenade) the same size and shape as a baseball, to make it more effective for the soldiers who had grown up playing baseball.

10. The Australian Mk 3 Centurion 169041 was nicknamed “The Atomic Tank” due to it surviving a 9.1kt blast from 460 meters away. The tank was simply driven off after the test and went on to spend another 23 years in service, including time in the Vietnam war.

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11 M65


The US military at one time invented the M65, the recoilless nuclear rifle. It fired nuclear rockets.

12. The Russian attack helicopter Kamov Ka-50 has an ejection seat. Before the rocket in the seat deploys, the rotor blades are blown away by explosives in the rotor disc.

13. The US military adopted the M2 Browning heavy machine gun in 1933, and still uses it extensively to this day.

14. During Operation Desert Storm there were 9 American M1 Abrams tanks destroyed. All 9 were destroyed by Americans.

15. The US military mounted rocket engines on a C-130 Hercules for a hostage rescue operation named Operation Credible Sport.

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16 Samsung SGR-A1

Samsung SGR-A1

South Korea’s military deployed robotic sentries armed (Samsung SGR-A1) with machine guns and grenade launchers. The system was designed to replace human-oriented guarding along the Korean Demilitarized Zone.

17. The US Army has a prototype vehicle, the HEL MD, armed with a 50-watt laser cannon capable of taking down mortars and UAVs.

18. During the Gulf War, five times more M2 Bradleys were lost due to friendly fire than enemy fire.

19. During the “Battle of Los Angeles”, US army fired over 1400 rounds of artillery fire into the skies over Los Angeles, when it turned out that there were actually no enemy aircraft.

20. During World War 1, America’s Mk 1 grenade was so difficult to use that it was often thrown unarmed. Enemies would then throw it back, this time properly armed.

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21 M18 Hellcat

M18 Hellcat

The most effective tank destroyer that America had during World War 2 was actually a small vehicle called the M18 Hellcat. It didn’t have a very powerful gun or much armor, but it was the fastest armored vehicle ever deployed until the turbine powered Abrams tank was designed, decades later.

22. In the 1950s the Soviets developed ZSU-23-4, an armored vehicle which is “still regarded as posing a major threat” on the modern battlefield.

23. The M50 Ontos (Greek for ‘Thing’) was an American light armored tracked anti-tank vehicle which mounted 6 M40 106 mm recoilless rifles as its main armament.

24. The M1911 pistol served as the standard-issue sidearm for the United States Armed Forces from 1911 to 1985.

25. During World War 2, the Japanese tried to copy the M1 Garand (Type 4 rifle), but couldn’t get the feeding system to work reliably enough before the war ended.

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