ABERDEEN TEST CENTER, Md. -- The Army is set to send its high-tech "counter defilade" weapon to the war zone in the next few months, the first real-world deployment for the much-anticipated XM-25 Individual Airburst Weapon.
Officials announced May 5 that a group of Army Special Forces Soldiers will take the weapon with them to Afghanistan sometime this summer.
During live-fire demo here, Soldiers shot the Heckler & Koch-made XM-25's high-explosive rounds through the window of a simulated building, showering "enemy" mannequins inside with lethal metal fragments.
I'll probably be waiting a pretty good while before we get one of these in the gun shop. And then waiting an even longer while until the new wears off and we get a good used one I can buy. Who am I kidding, I couldn't even afford the 25mm ammo for this high-tech terrorist killer.
Afghanistan veterans who fired the weapon for the first time this week predicted it would be a "game changing" weapon, a gun that can engage Taliban insurgents using distant ridge-tops, thick mud walls and tree lines as cover."It brings, right now, organic to the squad, the capability to defeat targets that we're seeing everyday in Afghanistan -- targets that we can't currently hit," said Col. Doug Tamilio, project manager for Soldier weapons with the Army's Program Executive Office Soldier. "It will save Soldiers' lives, because now they can take out those targets."
While labeled a grenade launcher, the XM-25 is much more than that, Army officials say. It's a precision direct, and indirect, fire weapon system that combines an array of sophisticated sensors, lasers and optics with a microchip-embedded 25mm high explosive round.
But I can dream. And our troops will be kicking some Taliban hindquarters well and truly.