View Single Post
Old 06-07-2019, 03:39 PM
Corry El is offline
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 3,747
Originally Posted by carnivorousplant View Post
Thanks, Bear.

I knew a guy who claimed he hit a North Korean twice with a carbine, "saw feathers fly out of his jacket", his buddy shot the Korean with a Garand, and he fell down. Keltner "lost" the carbine (he carried a radio) and picked up a Garand from a casualty.
Again that idea tended to be Korean War. Although his works of WWII analysis were later called into serious question, I found SLA Marshall's analysis of Korean infantry combat fairly compelling. In which he concluded 'lack of stopping power' was probably mainly enemy soldiers who weren't actually hit, which also had to do with the injudiciously used full auto setting on M2 carbines mainly used in Korea, in 'panic fire'. And 'not reliable' also cropped up mainly in the extreme cold of the 1950-51 winter campaign in Korea (in devastating defeats of the US Army by the Chinese mainly rather than the North Koreans).

There's much less anecdotal evidence let alone sound analytic basis to think the M1 carbine was at a huge disadvantage in WWII infantry combat in non severe cold in terrain that limited ranges more toward the maybe 100 yard average of infantry combat rather than say 300 yard relative extreme. Not only 'tunnel warfare'.

Today with peer combatants almost certainly wearing high performance body armor and maybe irregular combatants too, the original M1/M2 carbine/cartridge wouldn't be a workable military weapon. But against unarmored mid-20th century opponents at then typical infantry combat ranges in a lot of situations I think the 'lack of stopping power' argument has a lack of really good evidence. Even in Korea the Soviet WWII-style armament of the North Koreans throughout the war, and the Chinese once rearmed from 1951 or so, had most of a squad's firepower in SMG's firing 7.62x25mm Tokarev (v 7.62*33 carbine) and you don't read a lot of US anecdotes about how the enemy 'burp guns' weren't much to worry about because they 'lacked stopping power'.