• Gone viral - Islamic State's evolving media strategy

    As a US-led coalition considers its options against Islamic State, Ezzeldeen Khalil examines the growing sophistication of the group's use of social media to intimidate its opponents and win the support of local populations.
  • Age of uncertainty

    As Western forces disengage from Afghanistan, the five nearby ex-Soviet nations in Central Asia are employing diverse strategies to ensure their security in a tough neighbourhood, reports Joshua Kucera
  • Ready and able: post-war US Marine Corps takes shape

    As 2014 draws to a close the US Marine Corps is proceeding with efforts to reshape the force for new missions after the multiple wars that have dominated its operations since 2001. Jim Dorschner reports
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  • USMC stands up Middle East response force

    The US Marine Corps (USMC) has established a new special purpose task force for US Central Command (CENTCOM) that includes 2,300 marines and aircraft based throughout the region, Pentagon spokesman Rear Admiral John Kirby announced on 30 September. Special Marine Air Ground Task Force Central


  • Type 79/85 7.62 mm self-loading sniper rifles

    Development The Type 79 self-loading sniper rifle is a direct copy of the Russian SVD Dragunov. A later variant, the Type 85 appears indistinguishable from the earlier Type 79 and the former is thought to have only minor cosmetic component changes to ease production. Description Both models of

  • OFB INSAS 5.56 mm assault rifle system

    Development The Indian Small-Arms System (INSAS) rifle is one component in a planned family of weapons who would share a similar design base. The other components of the family are a light machine gun (see separate entry) and a carbine/short assault rifle. Developed since the mid-1980s under the

  • Knight's Armament Company 5.56 mm Modular Weapon System

    Development In August 1995, the Knight's Armament Company (KAC) announced a US government contract award to produce a rail interface system (RIS) for the US Special Operation COMmand (USSOCOM) Modular Weapon System (MWS) requirement. The contract called for applications with USSOCOM 5.56 mm M4A1

  • M2 5.56 mm M16 specialty carbines

    Development Military Manufacturing (M2) has produced a range of extremely compact modified M16-type weapons for special-operations use with police and military forces. Although the company has also marketed a range of standard-size M16 rifles, its primarily focuses on special-operations weapons.