To Wound, or Kill ~ Special Air Service (SAS) Debate

(Via Firearm Blog) According to the Daily Mail the SAS are looking at switching from the 5.56x45mm NATO round to a 7.62mm round. They seem unimpressed that their US counterparts have access to 7.62mm FN SCAR-H rifles [pictured above] and they are stuck with the M4-like 5.56mm Colt Canada/Diemaco C8 Carbine. From the Daily Mail:

The SAS are being issued with new ammunition designed to kill the enemy outright after they condemned a ‘shoot-to-wound’ policy that put their lives at risk.

SAS Insider

Last night, a regiment insider said: ‘The shoot-to-wound policy was based on the assumption that once he was wounded an enemy combatant would stop fighting, and so would his comrades to give him first aid. ‘But this backfired against the Taliban. The 5.56 mm rounds did not take a big enough chunk out of them, allowing fanatical insurgents to keep on fighting despite their wounds. As a result, more SAS soldiers were shot and badly wounded

The elite troops will now use bigger, heavier rounds to overcome Islamic insurgents who are determined to fight to the death.

The bullets upgrade – and a new range of rifles designed to fire them – were recommended in a top-secret report on SAS operations in Afghanistan. It called for a return to a ‘shoot-to-kill’ policy and for heavier rounds to be issued to troops. The report’s authors described bloody clashes with Taliban jihadists who managed to ignore their bullet wounds and carry on shooting.


The problem of 5.56 mm rounds lacking killing power in firefights is worse because the Taliban use 7.62 mm rounds in their AK-47 Kalashnikovs and Russian sniper rifles. The SAS’s report said the 7.62 mm rounds flew farther and with greater accuracy – giving the enemy a distinct advantage, especially in long-range engagements.

…read more…

British and US troops have led to the death of nearly 3,200 Taliban militants in just around 90 days in Afghanistan

Weasel Zippers has this amazing story:

London, Dec 1 (IANS) Secret operations of British and US troops have led to the death of nearly 3,200 Taliban militants in just around 90 days in Afghanistan, a media report said Wednesday.

British Special Air Service (SAS) and Special Boat Service (SBS) personnel, US Delta Force units, Afghan Special Forces Tiger Teams and troops from other coalition forces hit enemy targets relentlessly for three months.

Of the killed or captured Taliban militants, 387 were top level commanders, The Sun reported.

These figures were handed to SAS official Andy McNab at a top-level briefing in Afghanistan capital Kabul.

The operations were part of the ‘autumn showdown’, launched to crush the Taliban before they ’skulk off for winter’.

McNab said: ‘We are nailing the Taliban. We are killing and capturing them on an industrial scale. This wasn’t a blanket approach to killing. These are tactical missions. Troopers are now specifically targeting the Taliban leadership, and those who fight for the Taliban.’

McNab, however, said some commanders were worried that younger, more radical Taliban fighters will take the place of dead leaders.

‘If a new generation of radical Taliban step into these dead men’s shoes, they too will be killed or captured,’ he said.