The Constitution was made to guard the people against the dangers of good intentions." --American Statesman Daniel Webster (1782-1852)

Monday, August 30, 2021

Monday Music "The Boys of Summer" by Don Henley




 I decided to change things up a bit, I will run the next few "Monday Music" with my favorite songs, the songs if they ever would let me run a segment on Sirius/XM or something and they would want me to play some of my favorite songs.    The "Boys of Summer" came out in early 1984 and it became my favorite song, replacing Manfred Mann Earth Band "Blinded by the light" and it was my favorite song until this one came along about a decade later.  This song has stood the test of time for me, it still is my favorite song, I can listen to it over and over again, there are only a few songs that I can do that with.  I will continue my "Bugaloo" songs in a few weeks, I wanted to give that theme a break since I have been flogging the crap er working the mess out of it.

"The Boys of Summer" is a song released in 1984 by former Eagles vocalist and drummer Don Henley, with lyrics written by Henley and music composed by Henley and Mike Campbell.
It is the lead track and first single from Henley's 1984 album Building the Perfect Beast and reached the top five in the United States as well as the top position on the Top Rock Tracks chart. The song's music video won many awards. "The Boys of Summer" was also performed live by Henley with the reunited Eagles; such a version is included on the group's 2005 Farewell 1 Tour-Live from Melbourne DVD.

Henley's song has a haunting rhythm and timbre, cemented by Campbell's 1-7-5 repetitive riff over a vi-IV-V-IV chord pattern. Superficially, the song appears to be about the passing of youth and entering middle age, with the theme of 'summer love' apparent in the choruses, and of reminiscence of a past relationship.
In a 1987 interview with Rolling Stone, Henley explained that the song is more about aging and questioning the past—a recurring theme in Henley's lyrics (cf. "The End of the Innocence", and "Taking You Home".
In an interview with NME in 1985, Henley explained the 'Deadhead sticker on a Cadillac' lyrics as an example of his generation selling out:
"I was driving down the San Diego freeway and got passed by a $21,000 Cadillac Seville, the status symbol of the Right-wing upper-middle-class American bourgeoisie – all the guys with the blue blazers with the crests and the grey pants – and there was this Grateful Dead 'Deadhead' bumper sticker on it!"

In an interview with Knoxville.com, Neil Giraldo, Pat Benatar's guitarist and husband, says that Henley came in the studio while he was in the process of recording the song "Love Is a Battlefield" using an up tempo beat, and asked Giraldo if he could steal the sound for use in his song, "The Boys of Summer", to which Giraldo gave his permission.
"The Boys of Summer" reached number 5 on the Billboard Hot 100 and topped the Billboard Top Rock Tracks chart for five weeks. It was also a hit in the United Kingdom, reaching number 12 on the UK Singles Chart. A re-release of the single in 1998 also reached #12.
In 1986, Henley won the Grammy Award for Best Male Rock Vocal Performance for the song.
"The Boys of Summer" was ranked #416 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.



   This is only a portion of the video, apparently it is restricted in the United States...Makes no sense, but whatever.

The music video to "The Boys of Summer" is a French New Wave-influenced piece directed by Jean-Baptiste Mondino. Shot in black-and-white, it shows the main character of the song at three different stages of life (as a young boy, a young adult and middle-aged), in each case reminiscing about the past relationship. This is shown during the line "A little voice inside my head said don't look back, you can never look back" at which point, each of the three people look back in turn. The young boy in the video, played by seven year old Josh Paul, resembles a young Don Henley. The girl in the music video is played by Audie England. The cutaways of the "boys" jumping in the air appear to have been influenced by the 1938 film Olympia. Interspersed with these scenes are segments of Henley miming the words of the song while driving in a convertible. At its conclusion, the video uses the post-modern concept of exposing its own workings, as with a wry expression Henley drives the car away from a rear projection screen.
The video won the Video of the Year at the 1985 MTV Video Music Awards (leading Henley to comment at the Awards the following year that he had won for "riding around in the back of a pickup"). It also won that year's awards for Best Direction, Best Art Direction, and Best Cinematography. The Best Direction award was presented to Mondino by Henley's then-former Eagles bandmate Glenn Frey

 This is the "Live" performance for that song.  Apparently Don Henley has issues with "Youtube" playing video's of his songs according to the comments I read. 

Friday, August 27, 2021

My impressions of California.



When I went to the "Left" cost, I made jokes to my friends that if I came back porporting to supporting Xiden or backing Newsome in his recall, it means that I was caught and brainwashed.  Well anyway We flew in to LAX and went to get the rental car.  While we were there waiting for the car, I was looking around and taking a few pictures.

    The trees looked like the TV shows and the movies that I remembered seeing.

   Holy Sh!t, the Gas prices......dang....I complained about the $2.95 I pay here in Georgia .    We hit the road and I started seeing signs that I remembered from the TV and movies.

     We stopped at the In-N-Out Burger, it is the first time I ever ate at one.

   The Scenery was beautiful that I saw, it was different than I was used to, California is a beautiful state,

       That being said, I have been other places in the world, I have been in the middle east, north Africa and Mexico and the Caribbean, plus Europe, East and West.  The joys of being in the service, I suppose.

      California reminded me of a 3rd world country, the infrastructure looked run down, everywhere that had concrete was tagged with gang graffiti or just graffiti.  

One of the many homeless people I saw.  They had a lot of them, we would be accosted by them when we left restaurants after eating our dinner, and when we would go to Carl Jr in the morning to get our coffee, we would see then sleeping on the sidewalk.  They had camps in the deserts between the houses and in the ditches.  The houses that were upper middle class had walls around them, like what I would see in the middle east or in Mexico or in South America, I wondered if there was broken glass embedded in the top of the wall to discourage climbers.  I had spoken to a utility guy from LA, he and his crew was there working a project and he told me that it was worse in LA and especially in the wilshire area.  he told me that the Police will not interfere with them, they won't move and get in the way of all the utility projects, and they are encouraged to stay by the actions of the city fathers.  I replied "dang"  he them asked me what did I think of California, and I replied "it is a beautiful state, but it reminds me of a 3rd world country, I hate to say".  He agreed with me and commented that the assholes in Sacramento have ruined the state and as soon as he retires he is moving to Tennessee.


  Actually saw an "Eastern" plane, and you could see the "Hockey Stick"on the tail.

    This our plane taking off...Finally.    I will include more pics.

Thursday, August 26, 2021

A little bit of what happened to me for 2 weeks...

My employer sent me out of town for a trip to activate an airplane in the desert.   We were to put this...

Onto this...

   Yes this is a Pylon of a "Wide Body" that is parked in the desert.   It takes a bit of time to "hang a motor" as we call it.  This was part of the process..

         Yes it is a cradle and the whole thing is raised by hand using hand cranks.  

   Well it was just a start.  We would up being there for 2 weeks installing Thrust Reversers, Nose Cowls on Both Sides, and fan cowls and all the other little things that we had to do.  Airplanes don't like to sit for over a year.  Things leak.  My employer parked a huge part of our fleet when Covid hit to preserve capital, and the climate is great for long term aircraft storage.  Most of our planes are now flying but we still have planes parked but we are bring them back into service.

some pics...

   With the restrictions, a lot of "Wide Bodies" are still parked by other carriers. Widebodies are B767's, B777's B787's A330's, A350's and I saw a couple of A380's out there, plus a bunch of Boeing 737's.

       I will post more pics later.

Tuesday, August 24, 2021

I'm Baaack

I am back from my trip out of town, I made it back late last night,and I was unable to post today to getting out of work and immediately going to a scouting commitment.  I will try to post something tomorrow night about my trip. 


Tuesday, August 10, 2021

Flying out of Town

 Well I am flying out of town, we got tasked to bring a plane back into service, so I am not sure if I will be able to post anything.  I will take my baby laptop with me in case the hotel has internet, but the location we are going to is kinda remote so we will see.  

   Worse case scenario, I will resume blogging sometime next week.

Monday, August 9, 2021

Monday Music "Whip It Good" by Devo


 Man this theme is still rolling.......

 I am continuing my string of "bugaloo" songs.  This discussion was started in the "Monster Hunter Nation, Hunters Unite", back in November of 2019? it is a Facebook group with enthusiast of the ILOH "International Lord of Hate" A.K.A Larry Correia.  We were talking about what song would we use if we looked out of our window or glanced at our security camera and saw this.....

One of the alphabet bois lining up to take down your house...What would be your "Valhalla" song and you would set it up to play as you load up magazines set up the Tannerite Rover, turn on the water irrigation system and fill it with gasoline instead of water and prepare yourself.

 I figured it would scar the alphabet boys if they come busting in and hearing a song about people standing for their beliefs and willing to fight for them no matter the cost, Good Music  unlike that crap they listen to now.  What can I say, My humor is warped....just a bit. Next week will be "No Easy Way Out" from the "Rocky IV Soundtrack, ..How Appropriate, LOL,  Now that should really cause some psych evals., hehehe, some poor ATF guy trying to explain the attraction to his mother because he is imaging himself as The savior of the American way rather than working for an agency that have the initials of a convenience store.  Now because we ain't gonna answer that door.  They can kick it in and start "the Dance"    I am very unhappy that the various .gov agencies have been weaponized by Obunger and continued to this day by the alphabet agencies because they don't like people that ain't on the democrat plantation.  Well I kinda like my freedom and stuff and that is anathema to the deep state and their operatives.

     I remember when this group exploded on MTV, you know the station that used to play music..well those people.  Anyway I remember when this song and video came out, it caused a bit of scandal with the subject matter that was shown.  I liked the song because it was corny and a bit edgy, totally different than what was playing on the radio during that time.  DEVO to me prestaged the New Wave invasion.

Freedom of Choice is the third studio album by the American new wave band Devo. It was originally released in May 1980 on the label Warner Bros. The album saw the band moving in more of an overt synth-pop direction, even though guitars still played a prominent role and contained their biggest hit to date, "Whip It."

"Whip It" is built on a motorik beat, similar to tracks by Neu!. The lead instrument is a Minimoog synthesizer. The bass is performed with a custom six oscillator synthesizer, custom made by Moog Music for Devo. The whip sound was made with an EML ElectroComp 500 synthesizer, Neumann KM 84 and U 87 condenser mics.On an episode of the VH1 show TrueSpin, Gerald Casale revealed that the lead guitar riff from "Whip It" is based on the riff from "Oh, Pretty Woman" by Roy Orbison with the beat moved to the back.
Gerald Casale states that the lyrics were written by him "as an imitation of Thomas Pynchon's parodies in his book Gravity's Rainbow." The lyrics evoke a working class desire to pull oneself up and to overcome adversity. The song has violent undertones, and Devo has often described it as about then-U.S. President Jimmy Carter, as Mothersbaugh describes in an interview on To the Best of Our Knowledge. According to MusicNotes.com, "Whip It" is composed in the key of E major.

Devo funded the music video for "Whip It" with $15,000 USD of their own money. The main visual of the video, Mark Mothersbaugh whipping the clothes off a woman, was inspired by an article in a 1962 issue of Dude magazine. In an interview for Songfacts, Casale explains "There was a feature article on a guy who had been an actor and fell on hard times, he wasn't getting parts anymore. He moved with his wife to Arizona, opened a dude ranch and charged people money to come hang out at the ranch. Every day at noon in the corral, for entertainment, he'd whip his wife's clothes off with a 12-foot bullwhip. She sewed the costumes and put them together with Velcro. The story was in the magazine about how good he was and how he never hurt her. We had such a big laugh about it, we said, 'OK, that's the basis for the video. We'll have these cowboys drinking beer and cheering Mark on as he's in the barnyard whipping this pioneer woman's clothes off while the band plays in the corral.'"
In the video, Devo wear black, sleeveless turtlenecks, and their famous energy dome headgear. When the video begins, all the members, except for Mark Mothersbaugh, wear the turtlenecks pulled over their faces. During the performance, each member lowers the turtleneck. Bob Mothersbaugh ("Bob 1") plays a Gibson Les Paul with an inverted horn, Bob Casale ("Bob 2") plays a red Rheem Kee Bass, and Alan Myers plays a set of Synare 3 drum synthesizers.
Not surprisingly, the S&M overtones of the video caused controversy. Devo was cut from a January 30, 1981, appearance on the television show The Midnight Special hosted by Lily Tomlin. After viewing the video Tomlin deemed it offensive to women, and according to Gerald Casale, "She promptly cancelled us off the special, she said she wouldn't go on if Devo was on her show."Despite this, "Whip It" received heavy rotation on MTV after its introduction in 1981


Saturday, August 7, 2021

Some more musings I suppose.....


 Well like a bad penny, they are talking about "Masking" again....Especially in the blue states and the blue cities.  In the red states Like Florida, Texas you have had the governors sign "No Mask Mandates" to keep the power hungry donks in the blue cities and in the school districts from pushing mask mandates because of this new "Delta" variant that the media is scaring the crap out of people on and even the Xiden white house has asked the media to "tone it down" because of the fear.  it was useful to have the lapdog media use the pandemic to scare the crap out of people when President Trump was in the White House in an attempt to punish him, but now that Xiden is in there, now they want to "calm it down?....Wow that is rich.

     I honestly believe that the government and the CDC are using the "Its for the Kids" as an excuse for the mask, where it is a reason to force more controls on people, and all it does is hurt the kids by this virtual crap, kids are social by nature,you have had more kids commit suicide the past 18 months than I am aware of in the past 30 years because of this crap, the government need to be busybodies and control people have damaged an entire generation of kids and they have promoted kids to another grade who are not prepared for it and they will be going up against kids from Russia, China and India who will clean their clock in the world stage because they are not dealing with the same crap we are dealing with.  


     Meanwhile using the pandemic and the now "Deadly Delta Variant" and I have heard of a new "Lamda Variant" peeking around the corner, the government, especially the donks are using the pandemic to get in touch with their inner tyrant for more government control on the population, and the sad thing is that a huge swath of the population welcome the government overlord as "their Savior", no matter the lies, the half-truth and the deceptions, they are like the battered spouses, always taking them back, partially because they get their monthly subsistence checks from the government and others because they have been conditioned ideologically since school to accept the government as their "savior".

     This is part of the left's march through our institutions since the 1960's and they, besides infecting our education system, they have infected our court systems, our federal law-enforcement agencies, and most other parts of the federal government.  All believing in the tenets of modern socialism, and that the government knows best and that is anathema to a free people, I am not sure what it is going to take to correct this, it took many years for the rot to spread and its going to take many years for the rot to reverse if it can be reversed.


     There is noise about putting people that are not vaccinated on the "NO FLY LIST"  Senator Rand Paul went ballistic on that one, saying that equating people that didn't want to get a "Jab" with terrorist was a huge stretch and a big civil rights violations and New York City is requiring you to have your "Vaccine card" to go out in Public, something...Something "Yours Papers Please" in a German accent comes to mind somewhere in the past.  I recall version 1.0 of a fascist dictatorship and it did cause quite a lot of grief and I have no intent on being quiet if version 2.0 starts the installation process here, we have a difference that the Germans didn't have in 1935 when the Nurenburg Laws took effect.


  People today are saying "We would never do what the Nazi's did...They were evil"  Well look at history, you take one of the most advanced countries in the world at the time, culturally, technology, music, medicine, and yet they did one of the most evil the modern world has seen with the exception of Lenin, Stalin and the uber evil of communism.

       We are having the pandemic giving busybodies the opportunities to let their inner Stalin flow and their innate desire to tell their fellow Americans how to live, and they are using the levers of government to do so, and many Americans are now of the mindset "Not no but Hell No" and the battle lines are being drawn, and we are dealing with the uber sanctimoniousness of the left because they are standing on the holy of holies...."Saving lives", Funny how they are using that argument "Wear a Mask, to save others" and the ever popular "It isn't your choice when your presence can infect me".  Like that paper face diaper can stop a virus...Yeah   Yank on the other one....it has bells on it.   


        One effect of the continuing pandemic is that they continued the moratorium on evictions, despite the Supreme court saying "You can't do that".  If this doesn't  proves that we are a banana republic, than nothing does.  It means that the "Rule Of Law" doesn't mean anything if it is a inconvenience to the people in the government.  This is deadly to the republic if the supreme court allows the defiance to stand, than it means that there isn't 3 equal tiers of government anymore, no checks and balances anymore, just the rule of the strongman or in the case of the Xiden administration, the "Rule by committee".  

  This is another feature of the moratorium, the landlords still are expected to pay all the bills of the property from any mortgages, taxes, ete, ete and many landlords are middle class, not rich, they own 2 or 3 houses or properties and manage it themselves.  The Government excuses the tenants not the landlords from their fiscal responsibilities.  And many landlords will lose their properties to the banks who will sell it to Blackstone and other huge funds that have been buying properties and inflating the housing market.  I believe this is a feature not a bug, this is designed to break the middle class and put many of the Middle class into the class of the poor and destitute.  They have to steal our wealth, our property, our 401K's and outlaw our privately owned guns, remember we are the modern day Kulaks and the elitist and their leftist allies have to break us like Stalin did to to the Kulaks of old and I mentioned it in a prior blog post a while back.  

Another problem that the donks ran into with their "Summer of Love" A.K.A the "Mostly Peaceful Protest(TM) where many cities rioted thanks to agitators like BLM(Burn Loot and Murder), and Antifa ran rampant and the democratic mayors and city councils told the cops to stand down or restricted them and allowed the assorted thugs free reign through the cities, and how they have a huge crime problem, they have cities with huge robberies, murders and other crimes that have risen double digit the past 2 years and business will not go downtown to spend money on expensive real estate when they discovered during the pandemic that they can run either from home, or from satellite locations in the suburbs where it is a lot cheaper to operate and a far less tax burden to the company and they don't have to worry about their employee's safety or their business getting burned out because some group is throwing a temper tantrum downtown and the political power structure allows them free reign to destroy and many businesses discover that their insurances don't cover riots and civil disturbances.  Meanwhile the Mayors and City councils have been treating the cops like crap and there have been record retirements from the forces of major cities and no replacements and others just leaving and getting jobs in smaller cities or in "Red" towns where the pay is less, but the people respect them and they don't have to worry about getting thrown under the bus.

    I got this from the Movie "Serenity", but the premise is the same, my friends and I we will not run, we will not cower, we will not go quietly into that long night, we will make it as expensive as possible for them if they try to get stupid and really push the issue, I do know that my "grace" is about exhausted as is many others and we are just tired of the constant pushing and there is no more "give" left in us.

Friday, August 6, 2021

The Armalite Story

I read this article and it was full of stuff that I didn't know about Armalite and that they seemed to have a "spate" of bad luck, it seems.  They design something really neat like the quintessential "America's rifle" like the AR-15 and its derivatives, then crash and burn later.  Yes I got this from "American Rifleman.



Bringing Small Arms Into The Space Age
As detailed in The ArmaLite AR-10 by Maj. Sam Pikula, USAR, The Black Rifle by R. Blake Stevens and Edward C. Ezell and the company’s own official history available at armalite.com, the ArmaLite story starts with George Sullivan, patent counsel for Lockheed Aircraft Corporation. Visionary, firearm enthusiast and huckster all describe Sullivan. His job at Lockheed was crucial to subsequent events because it meant that Sullivan was aware of the latest technological breakthroughs and space-age materials at a time when the American small-arms industry was stagnated and relatively antiquated. Small arms were built only of steel and wood, and new products were simply derived from evolutionary changes to old ones.

While not a professional, Sullivan had a passion for small-arms design. Through contacts in the aviation industry, that passion eventually came to the attention of fellow firearm enthusiast Richard Boutelle, who happened to be president of Fairchild Aircraft. Boutelle was intrigued by Sullivan’s ideas and, in the early 1950s, provided funding for a foray into the business of designing small arms. Sullivan set up shop in Hollywood, Calif., in a small building affectionately referred to as “George’s Backyard Garage.” Initially, the hope was to create sporting arms for the commercial market using modern, high-tech materials. The first effort, for example, was a .308 Win.-cal., Mauser-style bolt-action with a foam-filled plastic stock and aluminum receiver and barrel with a thin steel liner. Very few examples of this rifle, variously called the AR-1 and “Parasniper,” were produced.

rifles on golden background guns armalite semi-auto carbine .223 .308
A 1950s AR-10 prototype (l.) is shown next to a state-of-the-art AR-10A4 flat-top, this one mounted with an Arma-ment Technology ELCAN 3.4x scope.

As envisioned by Sullivan, ArmaLite was not intended to be a firearm manufacturer; ArmaLite’s stock-in-trade was to be ideas. The company would use knowledge of materials and manufacturing techniques gleaned from the aircraft industry to create radical new designs. It would then build prototypes of those designs and market them to manufacturers who would produce them under license. Sullivan proposed that Fairchild purchase ArmaLite and make it a division of the company, and in that way inject additional capital into the venture. Boutelle agreed and, on October 1, 1954, ArmaLite became a division of Fairchild Aircraft.

A Change Of Direction

Advertisment rifle survival rifle gun right side camo ad magazine
The AR-7 was a commercial, .22 LR-cal. version of the Air Force AR-5 survival rifle. The barrel and action could be detached and stored within the stock.

Shortly thereafter, ArmaLite was invited to submit a rifle for consideration by the Air Force for its new survival rifle. The firearm the company submitted, a .22 Hornet-cal. bolt-action takedown with a four-shot magazine, was dubbed the AR-5. The gun’s barrel could be detached from the action and stored in the plastic stock. With the buttcap then replaced, the 2 3⁄4-lb. gun could float. The Air Force adopted the gun as the MA-1, but never purchased it in quantity. Despite that, though, the interest shown by the military took ArmaLite in a whole new direction. From that moment on, the company would focus on military designs.

While testing an ArmaLite prototype at the Topanga Canyon Shooting Range in southern California, Sullivan met a gentleman who lived in nearby Los Angeles and made dental plates for a living. He was a former Marine who also happened to be an amateur firearm designer. In fact, he was testing one of his own designs that day. His name was Eugene Stoner. Shortly thereafter, Stoner found himself in the employ of ArmaLite as its chief design engineer.

While Sullivan had been the company’s visionary, day-to-day operations were run by Charles Dorchester, who served in numerous executive capacities, including president and eventually chairman of ArmaLite. While the company conceived and developed various designs, it was a semi-automatic rifle with an unusual locking action and unique gas system that would make Stoner—and ArmaLite—famous. It was called the AR-10 and was the focus of ArmaLite’s efforts from 1955 until 1959.

Tomorrow’s Rifle—Today
The AR-10 looked radically different from anything previously seen. It had an integral carry handle atop the receiver that contained the gun’s iron sights. The cocking lever was on top of the receiver and articulated in the opening of the handle. The fore-end was not wood, but fiberglass and, later, plastic, thanks to plastics engineer Tom Tellefson. Inside, it was just as radical with an eight-lug, rotary bolt locking not into the receiver, but into a steel barrel extension. That allowed the receiver to be made from lightweight, rustproof, forged aluminum rather than heavy, rust-prone steel.

drawing black white gun rifle parts callouts descriptions schematic

The rotary bolt and barrel extension was borrowed from the Johnson rifle designed by Melvin M. Johnson. (Johnson was the East Coast military rifle consultant for ArmaLite and had a contentious relationship with the military dating back to his efforts to get the Johnson rifle adopted in place of the M1 Garand. Some speculate that his involvement with ArmaLite didn’t help the company’s chances with the military.) The lock-up may have been Johnson’s, but the gas system was Stoner’s.

As described in The Black Rifle:
“[S]toner’s gas system utilized a simple open pipe, a concept first used in the Swedish Ljungman Gevar 42 and the later French 1944 and 1949 MAS semi-automatic rifles. In these relatively rudimentary applications, the gas piston and spring of a conventional gas-impingement system were replaced by the jet of hot gas itself, which traveled back through the hollow gas tube and impinged directly onto the face of the bolt carrier. The kernel of genius in Stoner’s gas system was that the AR-10’s gas tube, running along the left side of the barrel under the handguard, fed the gas through aligned ports in the receiver and bolt carrier wall into a chamber formed between the tail of the bolt and the surrounding bolt carrier. This forced the bolt carrier back. After about 1/8” of movement, the port in the carrier no longer lined up with the port in the receiver, and the further flow of gas was cut off. The momentum already imparted was sufficient to keep the bolt carrier moving, which unlocked the bolt by rotating it with a connecting cam pin, thus beginning its rearward travel. With the gas cylinder at maximum size and the bullet long since out of the muzzle, what little pressure remained was exhausted as a weak ‘puff’ through slots in the right side of the bolt carrier.”

Battling The Big Boys

guns drawing stack four rifles military guns armalite advertisement

The gun was quickly entered into the ongoing service rifle competition then pitting the Springfield T44 against the T48, a version of the FN FAL. The AR-10 arrived on the scene too late and with too little development to best the other rifles in the trials and the contract was awarded to the T44, which was adopted by the military as the M14.

However, a handful of researchers at Aberdeen Ballistics Research Laboratories—among them American Rifleman Ballistics Editor William C. Davis—had come up with some pretty radical notions of their own. Despite years of insistence by Army brass on .30-cal. rifles for combat use, some ballisticians within the military had begun to explore the feasibility of lesser calibers. The Hall Study, conducted by Donald L. Hall, had concluded that, given a rifle and ammunition combination with a total weight of 15 lbs., a soldier armed with a small-caliber rifle could kill, on average, 2.5 times as many of the enemy as a soldier armed with an M1 rifle and ammunition.

This was followed shortly by The Hitchman Report prepared by Norman Hitchman. It determined that most soldiers do not engage the enemy until he has closed to 300 yds., and that hit potential was rather low until combatants had closed to 100 yds. Therefore, the accuracy and power of .30-cal. U.S. battle rifles—built to a 600-yd. standard—were excessive. Practically speaking, equal results could, in theory, be achieved with smaller, less powerful, less accurate and less costly arms. This led to the Small Caliber, High Velocity (SCHV) concept. In addition to maintaining practical effectiveness, a small cartridge would recoil less, be more controllable in fully automatic fire (a distinct problem encountered with the .308 Win.-cal. M14), could be carried in greater quantity by individual soldiers and would allow a lighter, handier rifle than a .30-cal. cartridge. ArmaLite was consequently asked to explore reducing the AR-10 to .22-caliber. The company agreed, though it continued to seek sales of its .30 cal. domestically and abroad.

man white shirt black pants black rifles wall line row guns carbines engineer
Firearm designer Eugene Stoner poses beside various incarnations of the AR system. His greatest strength may have been his ability to take clever, yet disparate design elements and integrate them into a single, functional firearm. The AR-15/ M16 that evolved from his design has been with us for about 40 years now.

When the military requested that ArmaLite investigate downsizing the AR-10 to accommodate a .22-cal. cartridge, it’s doubtful the company realized how significant the request was to prove. Modifying the .222 Rem. cartridge and freely building on the work done at Aberdeen, Stoner—no ballistician—created the round that eventually became known as the .223 Rem. (5.56 mm NATO). Meanwhile, Arma-Lite designers Robert Fremont and L. James Sullivan downsized the AR-10, not an easy task since it wasn’t a matter of a consistent ratio of reduction from the large gun to the small one.

Once completed, the new gun—referred to as the AR-15—was largely ignored by the military bureaucracy that had initiated its development. Factions within the military were still uncomfortable with SCHV, while some felt the military was too far along in its commitment to the new M14 service rifle to change at that point.

From Bad To Worse
In the meantime, things were going badly with the AR-10. It is important to remember that Armalite was conceived of as a design shop rather than a manufacturing entity. The company contracted with Artillerie-Inrichtingen, the Dutch arsenal, to build the rifle, hoping for sales to foreign militaries. However, the company had never had the funds to properly develop the gun completely. There were numerous bugs that had to be worked out of the design, bugs a larger company might have anticipated and dealt with easily. Moreover, manufacturing obstacles continually delayed production, frustrating ArmaLite executives. Further, with the exception of a contract with Sudan—which no one has ever mistaken for a world power—the rifles weren’t selling, even to the Dutch whose arsenal was building them.

right side rifle armalite ar-180b black gun carbine
AR-180B (.223 Rem.)

Finally, with no future AR-10 sales on the horizon, the military’s interest in the SCHV concept apparently waning and Fairchild strapped for cash, ArmaLite chose to cut its losses and, in early 1959, licensed the rights to both the AR-10 and AR-15 designs to Colt’s Manufacturing for $75,000 and a 4.5 percent royalty.

Although it is widely regarded as a milestone in the history of bad ideas, the licensing agreement with Colt’s was not irrational given what was known at the time. Colt’s—itself near bankruptcy—was taking a gamble. Fortunately, that company’s luck was much better than ArmaLite’s. Its luck came in two forms: rising tensions in Vietnam, and the person of Robert W. “Bobby” MacDonald.

New Shooter
When the U.S. decided to intervene in Southeast Asia, it helped set the stage for the ultimate triumph of the AR-15. The election of John F. Kennedy and the appointment of Robert S. McNamara as Secretary of Defense meant that change had come to arms procurement. With McNamara’s “Whiz Kids” steeped in no tradition save arrogance, the traditional channels of trial, development and adoption could be breached. That is just what happened when Colt representatives took the AR-15 to Indochina.

The American government had decided that, despite the focus on strategic nuclear weapons, small arms for fighting limited wars against insurgents were needed and had been neglected. Developing and securing such weapons was to be the mandate of the Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA). These weapons were not to be carried by U.S. personnel, per se, but were to arm U.S.-backed foreign nationals. It was the result of such a program, specifically Project AGILE, that brought Colt’s representatives, including MacDonald and now Stoner, to the Far East to demonstrate the AR-10 and AR-15. The smaller arm was a tremendous hit with the diminutive foreign troops. The gun and its shooting characteristics appealed to those of smaller stature far more than did the AR-10 or any other .30-cal. battle rifle. Moreover, the AR-15 had virtually no competition from like-chambered combat rifles—there were none. MacDonald promptly informed Colt’s to focus on the AR-15 rather than the AR-10 and to gear up for the Asian market.

right side rifle gun carbine green plastic stocks armalite ar10
ArmaLite AR-10A4 (.308 Win.)

Stateside, MacDonald was no less effective. At Boutelle’s birthday party in Maryland, MacDonald handed Air Force General Curtis LeMay an AR-15 and let him shoot a couple of watermelons with devastating effect. The result was two exploded melons and LeMay’s quick request that AR-15s be purchased to replace M1 Carbines for Air Force personnel responsible for the security of Strategic Air Command bases.

In Vietnam, the role of the “black gun” continued to expand. Although it was supposed to be issued only to foreign troops, U.S. personnel gradually began carrying the new rifle, too. Obviously, this made logistic sense since they were traveling with AR-15-equipped ARVN soldiers. But also, American personnel noted that the light, fast-handling gun was better suited to jungle warfare than any other battle rifle-caliber longarm available. At first it was issued only to specialized personnel, but soon became a general-issue arm. ArmaLite could only watch in bitter astonishment as the AR-15 became the standard-issue U.S. service rifle, supplanting the bulky M14.

There were, of course, problems with the AR-15 (which was subsequently given the military designation M16). Many of those problems were directly attributable to how the arm was adopted—without adequate testing of the gun nor training for the soldiers. However, with the wherewithal that comes from having enormous government contracts, Colt’s, with Stoner as a consultant, was eventually able correct serious problems, especially the extraction and jamming issues that plagued the early guns and were only discovered after the rifles were widely issued.

After having reduced the AR-10 to produce the AR-15, ArmaLite reversed course and took what had been learned from the AR-15 and scaled it up to create a new, improved AR-10 called the AR-10A. The future, however, was clearly with the .223-Rem.-chambered rifle, and it appeared that the age of the AR-10 would never come.

right side rifle ar15 armalite gun
ArmaLite M15A2 National Match (.223 Rem.)

The Dream Winds Down

Boutelle was eventually relieved of his position with Fairchild. George Sullivan, the ArmaLite muse, landed more softly: He had never left his position with Lockheed.

Recognizing that the .223 Rem. was the hot ticket, ArmaLite was faced with the problem that the AR-15 patents now belonged to Colt’s. The company then created a “poor man’s .223” called the AR-18. It was to be a low-cost .223 rifle made from stampings rather than forgings and having a different gas system than the AR-15. It would allow less-wealthy countries to equip their militaries with a .223 Rem.-cal. rifle.

However, despite two decades of effort, the company’s luck ran true to form and sales of the AR-18 were very limited. In the end, ArmaLite was sold to Elisco Tool Manufacturing Company, a Philippine concern whose U.S. component folded with the overthrow of Philippine president Ferdinand Marcos.

Restoring The Dream
In January of 1994, Mark Westrom, a former Army Ordnance officer and civilian employee of the Weapons Systems Management Directorate of the Army’s Armament Materiel and Chemical Command (AMCCOM) purchased Eagle Arms, a small company that made AR-15-type rifles and parts following the expiration of Stoner’s patents. A business associate of Eagle Arms, Dr. John Williams, had worked for ArmaLite in his youth and introduced Westrom to former ArmaLite Production Manager John McGerty who, in turn, introduced Westrom to John Ugarte. Ugarte had been the last president of record at ArmaLite and had retained the rights to the trademark; Westrom promptly purchased those rights. Thus was the ArmaLite marque reborn.

logo print lion armalite



Wednesday, August 4, 2021

Foreign Use of the M1 Garand

I  Shamelessly "Nicked" this off "American Rifleman", It was another Garand article and of course I liked it immensely.  I did wonder if any Garands captured by any GI could come home as a "War Trophy".  I remember when I got a draganov rifle from some Iraqi's, and I tried to bring it home as a war trophy, and it was confiscated by the MP's...What the hell?   Now the AK's I got, Full Auto...Yeah, Yeah...but the Draganov was semi auto only, with a scope.  I betcha they took it home instead....rat bastards....

Morgan Modern M1 Use05

On June 6, 2021, Kamala Harris departed Washington on her first official foreign trip since being sworn in as vice president. When she reached her destination, Guatemala City, the country’s Foreign Affairs Minister Pedro Brolo met her at the foot of the stairs from the aircraft. The two then walked down a red carpet flanked by a military honor guard from the Guatemalan Army and that honor guard was armed with an old, familiar warrior: the M1 Garand.

But Vice President Harris is not the only 21st-century U.S. leader to be greeted by a foreign military honor guard with M1 rifles. In November 2017, President Donald J. Trump traveled to Tokyo to meet with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. While there, both men visited the Ministry of Defense where the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force Special Honor Guard and its Garand rifles waited. Although best remembered for the contribution it made during World War II, the M1’s service history has reached beyond the threshold of the 21st century all the way to the present day.

Japan Air Self-Defense Force Honor Guard members participate in a drill performance during the 2017 Friendship Festival, Sept. 17, 2017, at Yokota Air Base, Japan. (U.S. Air Force photo / Airman 1st Class Juan Torres - 170917-F-KG439-0111).

In some European, Asian and South American countries, the Garand is still being used for ceremonial purposes, which is why American-made M1s greeted Vice President Harris in Guatemala City and President Trump in Tokyo. But John Garand’s famous semiautomatic rifle continues to do more than just arm the occasional honor guard welcoming a visiting dignitary. It is still being used to train troops around the world, and it has even been used in combat during recent conflicts.

Ceremonial Use

The M1 rifle has achieved a unique longevity for drill and ceremonial purposes that came into being for three reasons. First of all, it is anatomically practical for a semiautomatic service rifle because it does not incorporate a detachable magazine that protrudes below the floor plate. That makes the Garand well-suited for the “shoulder arms” position in a way that rifles like the M14, the FAL and the G3 just are not.

Members of the Japanese Ground Self-Defense Force Special Honor Guard stand in formation at the Ministry of Defense in Tokyo on Nov. 7, 2016. The JGSDF held a welcoming ceremony for U.S. Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. David L. Goldfein as part of his first visit to the region as Air Force chief of staff. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Michael Smith).

Secondly, the U.S. government mass produced more than five million examples of the M1 between 1937 and 1957, so there are plenty of examples of it out there. Thirdly, the Garand is a handsome firearm that looks sharp–especially with a fixed bayonet. After World War II, the U.S. government loaned and sold M1s by the thousands to allied nations around the world, including Guatemala and Japan.

In addition to the M1s that greeted Vice President Harris and President Trump, the Garand also currently guards the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and Presidential Mansion in Athens, Greece, and chromed examples of the rifle guard the National Revolutionary Martyrs' Shrine in Taipei, Taiwan. In some countries though, the M1 continues to serve in a less glamorous albeit more practical capacity.

Training Use

During the 1950s, Argentina purchased warships and submarines from the U.S. in a transaction that also included several thousand M1 rifles. By the mid-1960s though, the country had transitioned to the FAL rifle, the MAG-58 machine gun and the 7.62x51 mm NATO cartridge. With that being the case, the .30-cal. M1s were no longer logistically practical, even though they were still in serviceable condition.

Right side view of Beretta BM59E rifle SN #5347812 (formerly Springfield M1 rifle SN #5347812).

To modernize the guns, and thereby extend their service life, the Argentine government paid Beretta to convert them to select-fire rifles feeding the 7.62x51 mm NATO cartridge from a 20-round detachable box magazine. The converted rifles, now designated BM59E, remain in service today with the Argentine Navy and are used by students in the Special Marksmanship Course of the Argentine Marine Corps. 

Although it was never intended to be one, the Socialist Republic of Vietnam is also a contemporary user of the M1 rifle. With the fall of the Republic of (South) Vietnam in 1975, thousands of M1s were captured by communist forces. Those rifles have been in Vietnam ever since and they are used today by the People’s Army to train militia units. The Garand has also been seen recently at the King Abdullah II Special Operations Training Center in Amman, Jordan, as well as the Philippine Maritime Institute in Manila.

The receiver heel of SN #5347812 shows the special roll markings that Beretta applied as a part of its BM59E conversion.  Note that “7.62mm BM.59, P. BERETTA, 67” has been roll-marked on the triangular shelf directly behind the rifle’s rear sight base.  In addition to that, Beretta obliterated the second line of the existing M1 Garand markings by overstriking “CAL. 30 M1” with a decorative motif. 

The Royal Thai Army’s Reserve Force Students learn close-order drill with M1s that are designated the Type 88 self-loading rifle. So even after more than eight decades, the Garand is still a tool being used to teach troops the martial skills they will need in uniformed service.

Contemporary Combat Use

Although the U.S. military has not used it as a battle implement for a half century, that does not mean that the Garand rifle’s combat history ended with the war in Vietnam. In fact, that history has continued writing itself through the decades to include foreign military use reaching beyond the Cold War all the way to the Global War on Terror.

Conflict zones in Africa, Central America, South America, the Caribbean, and various parts of Asia have all seen it in action recently and, in at least one country, continue to see it. M1s made by International Harvester were a part of Iran’s Islamic Revolution in 1979 and they also did some fighting during the war with Iraq that immediately followed it. The Garand was used in a violent coup d'état in Liberia in 1980 and it could be seen arming Local Civil Defense Patrols during the Guatemalan Civil War the following year.

In 1982, some of the Argentine Navy’s M1/BM59E conversions were present in the Falklands during the brief war with the United Kingdom for control of the islands. The Garand was subsequently observed in Iraq after the 2003 invasion, in Haiti and Lebanon in 2012, and Yemen in 2015, but the hotspot where the M1 has seen its most recent action is the Republic of the Philippines.

A U.S. Army Soldier displays an M1 rifle discovered in a suspected insurgent's home in Western Muqdadiyah, Iraq, Dec. 12, 2007. The Soldier is from Alpha Company, 2nd Battalion, 23rd Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division. (U.S. Army photo by SPC Shawn M. Cassatt).

At the start of the Cold War, the U.S. government loaned thousands of M1s to the Philippine government through the Military Assistance Program (MAP). This was because the Philippine Army had to be rebuilt and completely rearmed following three years of Japanese occupation during World War II. Although the Japanese were gone after 1945, the need for military weapons became critical when communist insurgents launched the Hukbalahap Rebellion in 1946.

Thanks in part to U.S. military aid, that uprising officially ended in 1954 but communist sympathies did not just go away–they remained dormant for over a decade and then flickered to life again in 1969. Within less than a decade, the old communist insurgency had given way to a new Islamist insurgency. At first the new insurgents were simply a group of separatists operating on Mindanao, Palawan, and the islands of the Sulu Archipelago under the name Moro Islamic Liberation Front (“MILF”), but they eventually became the notorious Jihadist militant group known as Abu Sayyaf.

To oppose the growing threat of MILF and Abu Sayyaf, the Philippine government created a counterinsurgency force in 1987 known as the Citizen Armed Force Geographical Units (CAFGU). These units were composed of local, able-bodied citizens who were armed with MAP guns, notably the M1 rifle. Despite CAFGU counterinsurgency operations though, Abu Sayyaf‘s strength continued to grow through the 90s and beyond the turn of the 21st century.

After July 2014, the group affiliated with the Islamic State and eventually brought the savagery of ISIS to Mindanao. In May 2017 Abu Sayyaf took over the city of Marawi, starting the largest urban battle fought on Philippine soil since World War II. In vicious house-to-house fighting, local ISIS-inspired militants briefly created a Caliphate stronghold that they attempted to defend with a variety of firearms that included captured examples of the M1 Garand rifle.

A pair of Abu Sayyaf militants fighting Philippine troops with an M1 rifle in July 2017 during the 153-day urban battle for the city of Marawi on the island of Mindanao. 

Although it took 153 days to overpower them, on October 17, 2017, President Rodrigo Duterte declared Marawi "liberated from terrorist influence."  By then the city had been reduced to rubble, but the battle was at an end and Abu Sayyaf had been dealt a major setback. The Philippine government then instituted martial law and the military moved swiftly to disarm what was left of the insurgents on southern Mindanao and on the islands of the province of Sulu. Soon members began to surrender to the government and turn in their weapons.

Throughout 2018 and 2019, the military recovered caches of small arms in significant quantities, much of which had been loaned to the Philippine government by the U.S. almost seventy years prior. Although each stockpile was a little different, they all nevertheless consisted of M14s, M16s, M79 grenade launchers, mortars, machine guns and, of course, M1 rifles. As tempted as we might be to use the past tense when referring to it, we simply can’t because the M1 is a rifle that belongs to the present - and not just for collecting, shooting matches, drill teams, training detachments and honor guards.

There are probably more Garand rifles still hidden in the jungles of the Philippines just waiting for an Abu Sayyaf revival. For that matter, there are probably others still in the hands of Houthi rebels in Sana’a or Shi'ite clans in Beirut. That means that, even as ceremonial Guatemalan M1s greeted the Vice President on June 6, there are examples of the rifle secreted in far-off conflict zones that will eventually write the next chapter in the Garand’s fighting history.