Army Chief on the Caliber Case

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At my old job, we used to always joke that it wasn't news unless the Washington Post, New York Times or AP reported it -- even if we'd done the story a month earlier.

Well, here's another case of the "it ain't news" phenomenon. We've been covering the heck out of this issue for more than a year, but when the chief says something about it and the AP hears it, well, then, Stop the Presses!

From today's Military.com headlines:

The military is reviewing Soldiers' complaints that their standard ammunition isn't powerful enough for the type of fighting required in Iraq and Afghanistan, the Army's highest-ranking officer said Thursday. But Gen. George W. Casey Jr., the Army chief of staff, said it was too soon to say whether the Pentagon will switch.

Current and former Soldiers interviewed by The Associated Press said the military's M855 rifle rounds are not powerful enough for close-in fighting in cities and towns in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Speaking with reporters at a conference in Huntsville, Casey said leaders are constantly soliciting feedback from Soldiers in the field and were aware of complaints about the M855 ammunition.

"To effectively prepare them we have to adapt as the enemy adapts, and that is some of the feedback we have gotten," Casey said. "We'll evaluate it quickly and then we'll decide how we want to proceed."

But Casey said it would be premature to say if the Pentagon will consider a different type of ammunition.

"I can't tell you exactly what we're going to do," he said.

How much do you want to bet the answer to that question is "nothing"...? Kinda like the M-4 debate, huh?

-- Christian

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