Monday, 23 December 2013
Death of a Gunsmith: Mikhail Kalashnikov 1919 - 2013
What a legacy he has. Kalashnikov often expressed regret at the killing power he had unleashed. However he put the blame squarely on failed leadership not good design. Because of the perfection of the 1946 design who can say how many have been made, but well over 100 million for sure. Sixty eight years later it remains to be the gold standard in assault rifles.
"The deadliest weapon in the world is an American Marine and his rifle"
-General Black Jack Pershing 1918
It was not until 1962 that US Marines were issued a modern assault rifle. The M16 that arguably remains inferior to AK 47. The superiority of the AK 47 over the US M1, M14 and M16 gave the revolutionary proxy armies of the Soviets a huge advantage over the Capitalist funded and supplied governments of status quo. History may have been much different if US Military thinkers had been as impressed with the Nazi Sturmgeher 44 as Stalin was.
The Kalashnikov is perhaps the defining product of Communism. The Capitalists making 8 million M16 to date have become fabulously wealthy. Had Kalashnikov been a capitalist he would surely have been one of the richest men to ever live. This is a good illustration of the myth that only capitalist society can create world changing products. In fact on a per capita basis socialist Europe embarrasses the capitalist west. Want to buy the best car, watch, clothing, or refrigerator, they all come from a Socialist Country. That brings to mind another famous saying of a Chinese Chairman.
"It does not matter if the cat is black or white as long it catches mice"
Thinking aboot that, IMHO I would rather be a German cat than an Anglo Saxon one.