By Gordon Duff, Senior Editor
American built sniper rifles and specialized optics, thermal and light amplification, all very restricted, are flooding into Turkey. They are going to Al Qaeda. The production is from small shops, one or two owned by dilatant Fox News “generals” and GOP mercenary groups. VT is the primary designer of these weapons but has the wrong politics.
Israeli “businessmen” have been roaming the US, visiting the many and sundry machine shops and custom assembly facilities that produce sniper rifles. They pick up samples, often without legal transfer as required by law, as foreign nationals can’t buy weapons in the US. That doesn’t matter, these are Israeli’s and weapons they get can go out on El Al planes, diplomatic pouches or be carried to Israel by members of congress, they own more than a few of those.
The weapon wanted is the mysterious AR 10, the .308 and/or 7.62x51mm version of the old semi-reliable M16 or M4 carbine. The weapons are showing up in Turkey, mostly in sniper configuration. I know a bit about these things as VT has an affiliated custom shop that produces more models of AR 10 sniper rifles than any other.
These are low production specialized weapons. There is little standardization for the AR 10, no “mil spec” as it were. Parts from one don’t fit another, springs and triggers don’t fit, receivers are non-standard and most bolt carriers don’t work in any weapon, not as manufactured. Why do people want these weapons?
The standard sniper rifle used in much of the world is the Dragunov in Russian 7.62x54R, a rimmed cartridge from well over 100 years ago. These are outstanding weapons but have no buffer group, don’t adapt to modern optics well and, though semi-automatic, can’t put out rapid accurate fire at above 500 meters because of recoil. The AR 10 has no recoil.
Are sniper rifles the only weapons being gathered for Al Qaeda? First of all, it should be a reasonable concern that weapons like these are going into the hands of terrorists. It might also be a concern that they are coming from the United States and flowing directly to the group that many Americans, those who believe our government, a smaller group every minute, believe was responsible for 9/11.
Who are they going to kill with these things? Will it just be Syrian soldiers or are there other plans?
Quality weapons aren’t that hard to get. However, these fire much like the American M4, a very underpowered but highly accurate and very light rifle. What they do that the M4 and AK47 does not do is shoot 800 meters with deadly accuracy. A child can kill at extreme distances with one of these with almost no training at all. These weapons were what the US didn’t have in Afghanistan and why the US bought back a shipload of aging Garand style M14s from Korea, weapons that are primitive in comparison although excellent.
VT came upon the sniper rifle bazaar because we are embedded in that community. These weapons are made from limited production parts with companies like Armalite, DPMS, Matrix Aerospace, Aero Precision and Palmetto putting out the majority of basic receiver sets. The sale of these is tracked and mass production has not been ramped up though we are obviously going to see it now.
Moreover, there are only dozen or so gunsmith/designers who have worked with this “build platform” more than casually.
The partnership between Israel and Turkey is no surprise. The superiority of American weapons is a surprise to some but it shouldn’t be. What should be of note is that Al Qaeda feels totally free to come to the United States to gather needed hardware designed only to murder specific medium to high value targets and nobody seems to care.
With a 24 inch Ar 10 with a thermal scope, a SWAT officer nearly a thousand yards away wearing extensive camouflage and obscured by smoke can be killed quickly and easily with a single shot. A skilled shooter with a Semi-Automatic Sniper System can erase an entire special operations team in 15 seconds. There are specialized optics available for these weapons that automatically track a chosen target and operate the trigger as well.
We don’t even want to begin discussing remote sniper systems that work off an Ipad anywhere on earth.
Someone has decided to “inoculate” themselves from American SEAL teams and Special Forces by flooding the battlefield with “low rent” amateur snipers.
This is one weapon system, just one. How many others are getting the same “quick to market” promotion near Al Qaeda’s Hatay, Turkey training camps?