back to article Yes! It's the Reg Top 5 FUTURISTIC GUNS Thanksgiving Roundup!

As anyone with their finger on the pulse of our former transatlantic colonies knows, yesterday was Thanksgiving: a traditional American ritual in which families come together to celebrate the fact that they have plenty of food for the year ahead by eating most of it in one day, the while watching enormous men crashing into one …


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  1. Blofeld's Cat Silver badge

    Black Box

    There could be a downside to having a Black Box...

    Callahan: I know what you’re thinking: “Did he fire six shots, or only five?” Well, to tell you the truth, in all this excitement, I’ve kinda lost track myself. But being this is a .44 Magnum, the most powerful handgun in the world, and would blow your head clean off, you’ve got to ask yourself one question: “Do I feel lucky?” Well do ya, punk?

    Black Box: [Tri-tone] Your magazine is empty - please reload your weapon and try again.

    Punk (reaching for shotgun): Well since you ask...

    1. ian 22

      the most powerful handgun

      Cameron's Big Society will likely require all to have Big Pistols. You can be sure the crims will have them. The .50 Desert Eagle, too.

  2. Ian Ferguson

    Clever stuff

    The only one that worries me a bit is the XM-25. How long before soldiers see it as the easy option - when raiding a building, just fire one of these into the room before risking your skin... and find out who's inside afterwards.

    1. Richard 81


      ...or indeed, find out who's insides are inside afterwards.

    2. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
      Big Brother

      This happens currently anyways...

      [Many residents near Kandahar] have lodged repeated complaints about the scope of the destruction with U.S. and Afghan officials. In one October operation near the city, U.S. aircraft dropped about two dozen 2,000-pound bombs.

      In another recent operation in the Zhari district, U.S. soldiers fired more than a dozen mine-clearing line charges in a day. Each one creates a clear path that is 100 yards long and wide enough for a truck. Anything that is in the way - trees, crops, huts - is demolished.

      "Why do you have to blow up so many of our fields and homes?" a farmer from the Arghandab district asked a top NATO general at a recent community meeting.

      Although military officials are apologetic in public, they maintain privately that the tactic has a benefit beyond the elimination of insurgent bombs. By making people travel to the district governor's office to submit a claim for damaged property, "in effect, you're connecting the government to the people," the senior officer said.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Easier still,

        '...or indeed, find out who's insides are inside afterwards.'

        Or as is more likely, who's insides are now outside.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Would this apply to Sultan Munadi as well?

          We're still waiting for an inquiry. Oh, I forgot. He's not British, so he doesn't count.

      2. Allan George Dyer Silver badge

        That's what I like about the military...

        '"in effect, you're connecting the government to the people," the senior officer said'

        their deep empathy with ordinary people, and the ability to come up with incisive solutions. Rather reminds me of the famous Vietnam War quote, "In order to save the village, we had to destroy the village"

    3. James Hughes 1

      Already doing it..

      But with grenades.....

    4. Argh!

      just fire one of these into the room before risking your skin

      That presumably is rather the idea, though hopefully they'd use the flashbang-type round! That's standard practice anyway, this'd just make it more effective.

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      easy option

      They do that anyway, a new type of weapon won't make any difference. (at least that's how it was when I was in)

      AC obviously

    6. Charles 9 Silver badge

      Collateral Damage

      Collateral Damage is the one thing they're trying to avoid right now. Really stirs up trouble when you accidentally kill the good guys. They probably won't start taking such measures until the Flashbang round is ready. Then it'll make more tactical sense just before a storming.

    7. An_Old_Dog

      The 'Easy Option' . . .

      ... already exists and is in wide deployment. It's called 'a grenade'.

      Though, in a civillian situation, I suppose there might be some not-really-an-accident-accidents all-too-conveniently happening to specially-selected individuals or groups: "Your Honor, at the time of the incident, I believed the next shell up in my multi-gun was a flash-bang, instead of a fragmentation round."

    8. Ainteenbooty

      Establish a procedure

      In an eventuality where this is part of the standard equipment for US soldiers, it could only enhance their ability to safely clear a room containing hostages. The procedure need only include a simple recipe: 1 door breaching round followed by a succession of 3 to 4 time-staggered flash bangs to soften the bad guys for close range disposal by the team that enters immediately after.

      Greater technology can only enhance one's ability to spare non-combatants.

      However, I could envision an eventual proposal to replace that overly-complex and humanitarian procedure with the more affordable and less training intensive single-high-explosive-round-through-the-door solution as a cost cutting measure if the quelling of Russia becomes an unpopular place to spend money in the ramp-up to the 2048 election season.

    9. Anonymous Coward

      Ohhhhhh you mean like...

      Don't want to risk all the paperwork from plugging them full of holes "just because"...

      Negotiate? Calm them down? Develop interpersonal skills?

      Noooooooooooooo fuck them - use the TASER....

      Dogs, Cat's, wandering senile people, people talking to themselves in the park, angry teenagers, domestic disputes, etc., etc., etc..

      Don't shoot them, TAZE them....

      Parking ticket - and a good tazing.

      Overdue library book - just taze them....

      Give the US gunned up nutjobs a no brainer point-and-kill everything gun.....

      Blast them...

      Too eas-eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

  3. Richard 81


    An obvious problem is that anyone who intends to do anything naughty with their gun will probably disable the black box first. I imagine a black market in non-smart gun grips will spring up over night.

    1. annodomini2

      Or in typical fashion...

      Someone gives their 'expert' opinion that the technology cannot be overridden/modified/etc and they use it for framing people

  4. Anton Ivanov

    I disgaree on "4"

    Both PTRD and PTRS which started their life as a light anti-materiel infantry weapon found their prime as sniper rifles. They were one of the trophy weapons which both Germans and UN forces prised and used actively. IIRC both even have official German designations.

    In any case, they were in heavy use since 1941 so the usage of the .50 for sniper duties is in fact much older than stated in the article.

  5. Chris 244
    Black Helicopters

    Tinfoil Hat

    Should be adequate to protect from a man-portable microwave gun.

    P.S. Minor correction to Bootnote #4. Hathcock used a bog-standard M2 .50 cal machine gun for his then record-setting kill at 2500 yards. Only mod was the custom mount he had had made for his Unertl scope allowing him to mount it on said M2 (which was borrowed from the unit to which he was temporarily attached). Poor Homer he killed snuck out of the jungle right at the very spot where Hathcock had zeroed his sights.

  6. Jacqui

    molly's flechette

    I want!

    Also love the idea of her fingernails - would make typing a pain though :-)

  7. Rab Sssss

    @ian ferguson

    Which is not really any dofferent from the current approch of when in doubt toss a greneade in...

  8. Graham Marsden

    The future is here...

    ... if you want peace through superior firepower...

    The AM-15 holds up to a 275 round magazine!

  9. XDeputy

    @ian ferguson

    Having( many times} experienced the sphincter-liberating pleasures of being"first through the door,"

    I can find no fault with this philosophy(just wish this had been available during"my time"}

  10. Gene Cash Silver badge

    Rule 37

    There is no 'overkill.' There is only 'open fire' and 'I need to reload.'

  11. Anonymous Coward


    Wasn't it an American grenade that killed the Scottish aid worker in Afghanistan they were attempting to rescue..?

    1. Matt Bryant Silver badge

      RE: Oops...

      No it wasn't, as you well know, it was a Russian F1 grenade thrown into the room by her captors when they realised they couldn't win the battle. The knee-jerk statements of our politicians that it "could have been an American grenade" have long-since been proven to be just political scrambling to get a soundbite in without checking the facts.

  12. This post has been deleted by its author

    1. Tempest

      @ It takes more than smart weapons

      Couldn't agree more.

      The North Vietnamese taught the French how dumb it was t defend a valley at Dien Bien Phu in NW VietNam. The Vietnamese broke their field guns down to piece parts then either carried them on peoples backs or on tough bicycles over the mountains, rebuilt them, then taught the French.

      Even today the Vietnamese Army can be seen with 10-man squads walking around with a field gun in piece parts - for exercise.

      High tech was a failure in VietNam - even the basic boot & sock arrangement was a failure as the VN Army wears leather flip-flops - no need to stop and dry your socks and boots like the Americans.

      The extreme jungle conditions and the dedication of the NVA easily defeated US high tech in the south.

  13. JaitcH

    If Plod is getting one of these microwave portables they will only use one ...

    setting - High. Of course the military use carries different risks, one of the intended warmees might turn around and use your basic AK-47 and simply show how old technology often out guns new tech.

    When it comes to Plod, equating their meaningless "To serve and protect" and the equally meaningless name changes from "Force' to 'Service' to what they actually do to the public - treat them all like enemies - is hard, then they wonder why the victim public doesn't stand up and 'support their local Plod'.

    If anyone treaties me in a defined manner, I am likely to respond in kind. The Plod in the recent student riots did much to antagonise the crowds. Personally, had anyone used ice picks, marbles or chile powder (horses do breath), on the horses I would have not been upset. Once again, Plod went overboard - no way was it 'crowd control'.

    The population elects the Pols who immediately forget about the process and condone all this abuse of their electorate.

    In the States, the Pigs act like near military with their armoured personnel carriers, robots running around blowing up correct and incorrect targets, tasering people to death - remember how the much vaunted RCMP killing in Vancouver of a legal immigrant who lacked any knowledge of English? He was killed on the very day he landed in Canada to start a new life. Sure was a 'new life' - cut up in morgue. The was completely unnecessary since the murder victim was already being held in a secure room.

    The Rodney King assault, the murders - by police - of those attending a wedding party.

    Before any more life endangering high tech weaponry is handed to Plod, or Pig, a serious evaluation of how the public should be treated is needed.

    1. Matt Bryant Silver badge

      RE: If Plod is getting one of these microwave portables they will only use one ...

      Wow, what an insight into the petty paranoia that is JaitcH's mind!

      " of the intended warmees might turn around and use your basic AK-47...." Yeah, like the US Army will simply send them out unprotected! Even a five-year-old would be able to predict any microwave truck and crew will be well-protected by conventionally-armed soldiers. I suggest that the first "warmee" that pulls an AK-47 will not live long to regret it. I can't work out if it's just that you are too blinded by your anti-The-Man rhetoric to see they can think of stuff like that, or whether you really are just too stupid to

      .".....treat them all like enemies...." I suspect that you have never had occaission to meet a copper, and that the your views have been formed whilst reading far too many copies of Socialist Worker from the seclusion of your Mom's basement.

      ".....If anyone treaties me in a defined manner, I am likely to respond in kind....." I hope you do, because the "plods" are far better trained, equipped and more than ready to deal with the deluded such as yourself. You will find that your willful ignorance is no excuse when it comes to court. But why you think the plods would have cause to use a microwave gun on you is beyond me, all they would have to do to keep you occupied is give you a sheet of paper with "PTO" on boths sides.

      "....The population elects the Pols...." Exactly! The VAST majority of citizens are quite happy with the "plods" or "pigs" and would think you were talking out of your rectum. It is only the TINIEST of minorities that think the bilge that you have spouted here. Please, try a little bit of independet thinking before you post again.

      ".....In the States.... remember how the much vaunted RCMP killing in Vancouver...." Geography, like logic, is obviously not one of your hot topics. Vancouver is Canada, a completely separate counrty, not the States. The clue would be in the RCMP - Royal Canadian Mounted Police. I assume that's because you couldn't find a lethal Tasering incident in the States? Oh, and you forgot to mention that death by Taser is still very rare, even with Tasers being used in fifteen countries. Even the wild-eyed Amnesty International crowd, taking the most rediculously loose terms (one of their Taser "victims", whom had had previous heart problems, had a fatal heart-attack five weeks after being Tasered, but somehow AI insisted he died due to Tasering), could still only come up with 334 possible deaths related to Tasering, over an eight year period. That works out to an average of about forty-two people a year, Worldwide. On average, ninety people die every year in the US alone from lightning strikes, 120 from plane crashes (still the safest way to travel), more than 20,000 from flu, and roughly 42,000 in car accidents (an average of 114 per day). But, what is more worrying is that, on average, fifty Amercians a year are killed by small fans and forty-five are killed by their refirgerators! Seeing as you seem so het up on "fighting for the people", I suggest you dedicate your life to the banning of fans and fridges. Oh, that last bit was sarcasm, btw. Thought I'd best point that out seeing as you seem very obtuse (that's a fancy way of saying "stupid").

      1. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

        @Matt Bryant

        You are a willful apologist for the atrocious change in policing in the Anglo-Saxon world, and without any justification. The police in general *do* seem to treat the public as the enemy - I have had to deal with them in recent years when I have reported crimes and when I have been a witness to RTAs, and I have not come away from any of those contacts with a feeling of anything other than "I'm glad that's over". I am from a service family, and lived in close proximity with police for most of my childhood - I was brought up to trust and respect the police, so it is totally against my upbringing to have this attitude, but I would not go out of my way to help a policeman these days, regardless of what was happening.

        The police really need to rethink their attitude towards the public, and to be seen to be answerable to the same laws as anyone else. There should be strict investigation of any complaint by truly independent people, with enthusiastic support from the police to ensure that the truth is discovered. The police should be neutral in investigations, working both for the defence and the prosecution, and being as assiduous in finding evidence that supports the defendant's case as well as the prosecutor's. Nothing else is acceptable, and until it happens, JaitcH is not paranoid, just seeing the reality of modern-day policing.

        1. Matt Bryant Silver badge

          RE: @Matt Bryant

          "You are a willful apologist....." I would tend to think of it more as having an alternate view based on real life experiences. I happen to know plenty of coppers (roughly half of my Mother's side of the family), the majority of them dedicated to protecting the public and preventing crime, and it is far from being an easy job.

          ".....The police really need to rethink their attitude towards the public....." Cuts both ways, sunshine. I know coppers that tell me how p*ssed off they are with "pop culture" always portraying them as corrupt, racist or just ineffectual. Makes them laugh all the harder when they respond to a call from some desperate Pop/Fashion Icon. Believe me, half the stuff celebs get up to never makes the press.

          ".....There should be strict investigation of any complaint by truly independent people...." Yeah, that's called the IPCC. It's run by non-Police appointed by the Home Secreatary, not the coppers. They may use coppers for some investigations, but they have completely independent investigators of their own as well. I suggest you go read up on the IPCC commissioners, they're most definately not Police types! One, Mike Franklin (whom I have met, but I'm betting you've never even heard of) is a black former member of the TUC from Lambeth. A less likely background for a "police stooge" is harder to think of!

          ".....The police should be neutral in investigations, working both for the defence and the prosecution...." All nice in an ideal World, but it's not ideal, the Police are charged with gathering evidence to ensure the CPS win a prosecuiton. Before you cry any more crocodile tears, a defence lawyer will usually be in with his client long before the CPS get involved, and that lawyer will be doing his utmost to get the charges dismissed regardless of whether the client is guilty. Until lawyers start playing by your ideal rules, don't expect the coppers to.

          "....JaitcH is not paranoid...." That's your opinion. Mine is a lot less genearous.

          1. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

            Since you seem to know ...

            it all, I'll leave you to your belief that your family constitute the only good coppers in the country, and that there is no truth in the fact the police being effectively a law unto themselves.

            I'm watching the TV at the moment, and watching police impeding a lawful demonstration using atrocious tactics. Also, until police officers stand in the dock for the deaths of Jean-Charles de Menezes, Ian Tomlinson, Mark Saunders, Raul Moat and so on, I will not be giving them any sympathy at all.

            Oh, and the IPCC - yeah, provably impartial ...

            Defence solicitors *should* be with their clients first - a little thing called "the burden of proof". It is up to the prosecution to prove the crime - there is nothing that requires the defendant to help them at all. It is only a miscarriage of justice if there is a wrongful conviction (just about the worst thing that can happen in a society). Oh, and you should probably know that this within my area of expertise , both research and teaching.

            People calling for police to report crimes - around here, if it wasn't for the fact that a crime number is required for an insurance claim, the police would only be called by the hysterical family across the road who only feel that they exist if they have a representative from an official body there for at least 12 hours a day. No-one around here trusts the police, and, to be honest, the results of calling the police, in terms of solving crime, are the same as not calling them at all.

            I'm all for different views, but when they are willfully outside observable proof, it is just religion or delusion.

            1. Matt Bryant Silver badge

              RE: Since you seem to know ...

              "......I'm watching the TV at the moment, and watching police impeding a lawful demonstration using atrocious tactics...." Really? Please, give us some details on those "atrocious tactics". Did the Polcie bring icepicks, chilli powder and marbles like your mate JaitcH suggested? Are they standing on rooftops and throwing fire extinguishers at the protestors? Letting off smoke flares, smashing windows and illegally entering property? Or are they just using their legal powers to stop unruly demonstartions running out of control? I'm betting on the latter.

              "....Also, until police officers stand in the dock for the deaths of Jean-Charles de Menezes...." IPCC and public inquiries already held, officers that shot him were using justifiable force as the briefing given to them was that he was a suicide bomber and posed a deadly threat to the general public. Seeing as the public inquiry was on TV news, in the papers and online for weeks, I must assume your head was too far up your rectum to note the outcome.

              ".....Mark Saunders....." Already covered this one in a previous thread. Mr Saunders, supposedly an educated and intelligent man, got drunk and started firing a shotgun (into a neighbouring child's bedroom to be precise, and then later in the direction of armed Police) - none of which strikes me as a smart man's plan for a happy life. He was finally shot when he deliberately levelled his weapon at armed Police. Don't believe me then check the BBC timeline of events here

              ".....Raul Moat...." Oh come on, you must be getting desperate if you expect any sympathy for a violent criminal like Raoul Moat! Did you forget he shot three people right after being released from prison (including a traffic cop), had threatened to shoot any copper that got in his way, are you surprised his life came to a violent end? He went away for beating up on a nine-year-old! But what makes your high-minded indignation even funnier is Moat actually ended it all by shooting himself.

              ".....Ian Tomlinson...." Now you actually come up with something interesting, but not for the reasons you think. The copper I discussed the case with thinks PC Simon Harwood should have been charged with at least common assault immediately, but the delay due to the CPS having to look at a possible murder charge and the second and third post mortems meant the six-month deadline for an assault charge passed. As it is, Harwood still faces a disciplinary hearing in front of a QC, which means that if sufficient evidence is presented the QC can open a new murder prosecution, so maybe Hrawood will go down after all.

              "....Defence solicitors *should* be with their clients first..." Not arguing that at all, but you obviously don't recall the fact that solicitors and barristers are charged with upholding the law as well as part of their license. Instead, lawyers nowadays just seem intent on getting their client off by any means they can think of, with zero interest in whether they are actually guilty of a crime. I have spoken to solictors that admit they will advise a client caught drunk driving not to give a breath or blood sample, as the charge for refusing is a lot less than the one for drink driving, especially if they've been in an accident, and the CPS have very little chance of a conviction without the sample. If you ask the lawyers how they feel about that they always come back with practiced little lines about how everyone is entitled to a defence.

              "....just about the worst thing that can happen in a society...." Hmmm, I would suggest you talk to some of the victims of criminals that have escaped justice due to legal weasels, they might have a different opinion to your claptrap.

              "....Oh, and you should probably know that this within my area of expertise , both research and teaching...." Oh dear then, I don't hold out much hope for your students! Best hope they too can get cushie teaching jobs in other scholastic ivory towers, far from reality, and then you can all have late evening chats about "come the revolution", ey? Gawd forbid they might have to step out into the real World!

              ".....around here, if it wasn't for the fact that a crime number is required for an insurance claim...." I suggest you take that up with the insurance companies as insurance claims and processes are not the Police's responsibility.

              "....the hysterical family across the road...." So, in your area, "nobody trusts the police" unless they are "hysterical"?

              ".....I'm all for different views, but when they are willfully outside observable proof, it is just religion or delusion." So let's have some "observable proof", some real evidence, of all these great wrongs done unto you by the horrid coppers! Go on, enlighten us! I'm betting you're one of those twits that got themselves a criminal record during some stupid student protest years ago and have carried a grudge against the coppers ever since, blaming them for the results of your own idiocy. I just bet you think Edward Woollard is a "hero" on par with the Tolpuddle Martyrs. Id' think he was even one of your poor students, only I don't think even Anglia Ruskin would be scraping the barrel low enough to employ someone like yourself.

      2. Alien8n
        Thumb Down


        Unfortunately the evidence around here is firmly in the camp that the plod see everyone as the enemy. Even more so if you happen to be one of the few to wear black and have long hair. Not nice witnessing a copper choking someone until they pass out. Then when it's reported every single one of them say "we didn't see that, he must have inflicted the bruises on his neck on himself" and then get let off by the IPCC. Also overheard them waiting for people to come out of pubs stating that they're going to deliberately arrest someone for no reason except they hate the person. Even seen one person get arrested for asking to see their warrant number because the cop was arresting someone else that they'd harrassed into swearing at them. Cetainly seems that their method of "protecting" the public is to instill fear in them as it's become widely known that the police can literally do whatever they want and get away with it. They even let off the copper who was caught on video beating up a woman in the police station.

        1. Matt Bryant Silver badge

          RE: Plod?

          Please provide some details to back up your assertions, such as IPCC report numbers, dates, times, places, victims' name. Otherwise I'm liable to think you're just talking out of your rectum.

          " of the few to wear black and have long hair...." Sorry, you'll have to get in the line behaind those with black skin, brown skin, gypsies, Irish, and just about anyone else that thinks they're unfairly targeted. Of course, I'm sure you can provide evidence to back up your claims, rather than just your anti-The-Man sentiments?

          Here's a simple story for you, I'm betting this is how you'd see it. Years ago in lovelly, quiet Bideford (armpit of North Devon), the Goths would gather every Satruday night for a chat down by the war memorial, and every Saturday night the Police would turn up and arrest them, harrass them, and turf them out of the park. Now, here's what used to really happen. Despite numerous verbal warnings, the Goths used to congregate and smoke pot on the war memorial steps. This was stupid enough, but they also used to bring cars into the park and play The Smiths and other depressing sh*te at rediculous volumes. Not surprisingly, the locals would call the coppers every time, and the coppers would come down, arrest the ones dealing pot, check the vehicles and arrest those driving disqualified, without a license or insurance, or just those with unsafe vehicles. Usually they'd arrest three or four out of the two-dozen morons, the rest would be told to go home. The following Monday the Goths would parade around the lcoal college, telling all and sundry what "bad" people they were, always "being harrassed by the law", etc, etc, when the truth was all they did was annoy the local grannies.

          As for the ludicrous idea the Police can "get away with anything", have you seen the number of cameras there are in public places nowadays? Been down any pub just about anywhere lately and NOT seen a security camera? Most are run by private security companies or councils and recordings can be subpoenaed by any criminal lawyer or the IPCC if they want to build a case against a copper. Now, with all those spycams, which seem very good at capturing footage of the average moron doing his crimes, please tell me why we don't see a vid every week of all these beatings and intimidations that you claim happen? Oh, that may be because they don't.

  14. foo_bar_baz

    While this article is very much about the US

    Just to say FN is a Belgian company.

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Black Box Butt

    Variants of this are already in use on police weapons in some jurisdictions worldwide.

    Most include a gun camera, but that's easily obscured (FWIW: Most investigators treat covering the camera as proof of malfeasance...) and doesn't show who the actual operator is.

    I doubt they'll be mandatory for civilian use anytime soon but I'm sure that sooner or later WIkileaks will feature footage from a few police/military incidents after a coverup happens (such as shooting someone who's trying to surrender...)

  16. E 2

    re Big Hurt

    Do you seriously expect members of 'security' forces to use any less force than they can get away with?

  17. justkyle


    Are only as good as the arm or rocket that hurls them.

    Besides that, don't they have the highest dud ratio of any ordinance currently in use?

  18. This post has been deleted by a moderator

  19. Matt Bryant Silver badge


    ".....a Black Box spy-in-the-butt...." Surely if they were going to be spying on "butt activity", they'd be looking at the Navy first?

  20. skeptical i

    What, no bowel disruptor?

    Set that baby to "prolapse" ....

  21. Vanux

    You know what they say about those who want to look clever !!!

    You could have made this article really easy to read by getting to the point, but no!! You had to make the serious effort to look clever --some naturalized British writer once said that only stupid people and Europeans try to look clever, you must be one of either I suppose-- as if we needed to be reminded for the millionth time of the fact that parts of north America were once English colonies, get over it pal. It has been more than 200 years and for some reason, it seems, you just don't want to let go. If I were you [and I am glad I am not] I would try to never mention that fact again because it was one of the most humiliating periods in British history, because the English empire was not defeated by an empire, a kingdom or by a country, it was defeated by a bunch of rednecks with little more than slingshots to strike back with. Next time you write about something relating in any way to technology spare us the historical bullshit because you are neither a historian nor an expert, remember that nobody likes a smartass. Moreover, it may give you the impression that you impress some one with your intellectual abilities, trust me all it does is make you look like intellectual that writes without the benefit of intelligence, now I know why the British lost the colonies.

    1. Sir Runcible Spoon


      Cor Blimey, strike a light! A yank with a grasp of history!? What will they come up with next I wonder. I'm guessing you're a prototype that they just didn't think would sell, because I haven't seen any others from your (red) neck of the woods.

    2. foo_bar_baz
      Thumb Down

      Some things don't translate

      Including humour (or spelling). Get over it.

      I guess you yanks would be impressed by the author showing off his guns/muscles/cash instead of his wit. The rest of us were entertained.

    3. Santa from Exeter

      History Schmistory

      If you are going to indicate a lack of historical knowledge in others, I advise you to bone up on the facts in advance.

      The 'English empire' was never an English Empire, it was a British Empire; the 'bunch of rednecks with little more than slingshots to strike back with' were actually very well armed, supplied and supported by the French (who were pissed off they only got part of Canada to trade with); on your showing in this post I certainly don't agree with 'trust me', you obviously have very little idea of why 'the British lost the colonies' and no knowledge of the Commonwealth (and no, I don't mean the Australian bank)

    4. max allan

      So who's trying to look clever now?

      Are you trying to look clever by explaining all the faults in the original article?

      Does that mean you're stupid or European?

      Your post impresses nobody with your intellectual abilites. You couldn't even be bothered to look up the source for your quote.

      Can I suggest you go back to reading something .com instead of

      And in case you're wondering, in this country it's a "smart arse".

    5. GeorgeTuk

      I'll echo the sentiments of those above

      I don't what school you went to but ours teach us about our wins and our losses.

      The American War of Independence could not have been won without the French who were desperate to humiliate the British. They supplied weapons, parts, naval blockades and even men at various stages, everything short of actually starting a new war.

      And to say that we lost the colonies due to a taxation scheme against one, when the colonies were actually mostly given independence around 125 years later for any number of reasons (though obviously not for nice reasons most of the time).

      And if it was so true they didn't need technologies you were so good with said weapons back then, maybe you wouldn't need to remain the highest spending % per GDP on weapons.

    6. serviceWithASmile

      1776 you say?

      To which I reply: 1812.

      Your move, America.

      When you consider that we were fighting ourselves, it's little wonder we won.

      Tally ho, chaps

  22. Gordon Pryra



    "had anyone used ice picks, marbles or chile powder (horses do breath), on the horses I would have not been upset."

    Which is why normal people don't complain about "plod" slapping you down.

    Give yourself 10 years to lead a real life and then reread that amazing load of tripe and tell me you don't shudder.

    1. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

      @Gordon Pyra

      What is this "real life" of which you speak? I am much closer to retirement than teenage, and I agree with JaitcH almost entirely. The police use too much force that they are not sufficiently answerable for. They are *not* your friend (unless you are one of them), and do not want to be. The modern police force has nothing to do with that of 30 years ago.

      I suspect that it is you that does not live in the real world - you are stuck in the past when the police were servants, not bullies with warrant cards.

      1. Matt Bryant Silver badge

        RE: @Gordon Pyra

        ".....I am much closer to retirement than teenage....." Yeah, sorry to break the news, Grandpa, but the revolution came and went, and it did sod all for the "working people". You just go to show that age does not guarantee wisdom or a freedom from prejudice.

        ".....The police use too much force...." Yet you think it fine to stab policehorses with icepicks, or throw marbles under their hooves? Any idea what happens to a horse when it falls over and breaks a leg? Tut, tut, I'll be telling all your equally stupid friends from ALF about you!

        ".....that they are not sufficiently answerable for...." Yeah, so where's that Independent Commission For Students That Throw Extinguishers Of Buildings then?

        ".....They are *not* your friend....." I don;t think they'd want to be the friend of someone so narrow-minded. Please do tell me the last time you had a "run in" with the Law?

        1. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

          I've never had a "run in" with the law ...

          .. if by that you mean "when was I last arrested". I am a law-abiding member of society, unlike the police. However, in a previous life, I used to deal with the police a great deal (senior nurse on a psychiatric unit, especially on night), and I never came across one that had made any attempt to understand the mentally ill people they brought in. They were prejudiced.

          I recently had a car stolen. I reported it within three hours. I was treated with suspicion by the policeman that came out, and the correct information was not passed on. It seemed to be that the copper was prejudiced because of where I live.

          I am not, nor ever have been, a member of the ALF, but I do donate to the RSPCA - does that count? Regardless, if a horse or any other animal i being used as a weapon, it is the responsibility of the handler, not the person that defends themselves, if the animal gets hurt. The inhumanity is on the use of the animal in a way that it has no choice in, not the legitimate attempts to avoid injury by it.

          I have friends who are ex-coppers - they trust today's excuses for public servants with total and utter contempt.

          Overall, I still think you are willfully ignorant merely because you have some family that are in the police, and are incapable of thinking outside your indoctrination. However, you keep hitting them, I'll keep fielding them.

          1. Matt Bryant Silver badge

            RE: I've never had a "run in" with the law ...

            First off, can I just say that I do respect nursing and that I'd like to say thanks for your years of service to the community. However, I think you're a raging astynomiaphobic/dingbat.

            "......and I never came across one that had made any attempt to understand the mentally ill people they brought in....." So, you expected the Police to all be top-notch psychiatrists as well as over-stretched coppers? Ever wonder why the coppers were bringing in those mentally ill people? Because they had no choice, because the psychiatric wards don't keep them in and when they end up out on the street the Police are the ones that have to deal with them. Pick your excuse, either poor doctors or health cuts, the results are the same, the only commonality is that the Police actually don't want to be dealing with the mentally ill as they find they can be extremely unpredicatble to the point of being a danger to themsleves and others, and also tie up coppers that should be doing real Police work rather than acting as the return mechanism in the revolving door of today's "psychiatric treatment in the community". Please try and pretend all those mentally ill people didn't have known issues with long histories, that they were all startling new discoveries to the local NHS, and that many should have not been out there in the first place. The Police have two choices - charge them with a crime and lock them away, or take them to the local head-shop and endure your prejudice. Which would you prefer, that they locked them up and got them lost in the prison system, where their chances of treatment would be next to zero? Or is it beyond you to admit that those coppers that brought in those patients in were actually acting in the patients' and the public's best interests. I suggest that before you take your next swing you take a long look at the playing field.

            1. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

              Thanks for the thanks, Matt ...

              ... in general, I loved my time looking after the mentally ill. It does rather take the sting out of your assertion that I know nothing about real life because I now have higher degrees and work in universities, though, doesn't it? I'll assume that you merely forgot the apology for accusing me of having a criminal record when I don't.

              To save you further embarrassment, I'll just collect what I've said to you before, so that you have it summarised:

              1. I'm from a service family - fire brigade and nursing, not police. However, I grew up in police/fire brigade housing and most of my neighbours were police officers, both uniformed and CID. My default position is to like and trust the police.

              2. Policing has changed, and not for the better. There is a definite "them and us" culture, and it runs to the benefit of the police, not the public they are meant to serve.

              3. I am now a legal academic, which I took up at least in part because I am tired of miscarriages of justice involving people with mental health problems, at least part of which comes from police putting clearly ill people into the criminal side of things, not the treatment side (i.e. arresting, not using place of safety orders). I do expect the police to know the difference.

              Right - to answer your points. You missed the point I was making about the use of place of safety orders (incidentally, I agree with you about mental heath "care" reforms in general). Even when the police *did* know the patient (as you say, most of them are well-known to the various services) they tended to be heavy-handed. My best anecdote is getting a phone call at 3 in the morning when I was in charge of the unit, stating that the police were bringing in a "violent patient". Five minutes later, the lift came down, the doors opened, and a wall of blue uniforms shuffled out - six officers with a very small, well-known bloke who was known to be gobby in order to get a bed for the night. There was me and two female colleagues to greet them. "Watch him, he's dangerous", said the sergeant, handed the paperwork to me, and then all six got back into the lift! No attempt to see if we could cope, no history of what had happened, no "Goodnight All"! Brilliant policing, and only one of several similar stories that I and my then colleagues can report. Hence my concern that the police do not have sufficient people skills to do the job that they are supposed to do.

              Regarding the "patient's and the public's best interests" - tell that to the three discharged patients that were lifted by the police and brought in merely because they were in the town centre when the mayor was due to show some other mayor around.

              Regarding your comment about "should not have been out there in the first place", at least you are being consistent in your attitudes. At least, you seem to be saying that a person, once (or maybe twice) labelled as a criminal or mentally ill sufficiently to require hospital treatment, should always be treated as such. I may be wrong, and if I am, I apologise, but if it is your attitude, we have no common ground to continue discussion on that point.

              Unfortunately, we are getting off the original topic here, and it is probably time to draw this conversation to a close because no-one else is reading this anymore. You have an attitude towards the police that I wish I could still have, but cannot. It may not be the fault of the individual police officers, but their management, but it makes no difference. I am (and always have been) a believer that it is better that ten guilty people go free than one innocent party be wrongfully punished. That is not changing with age (and, by the way, I'm not fifty yet, so less of the "Grandad, eh ;-)). You seem to lean the other way - let's just leave it at that.

              1. Matt Bryant Silver badge

                RE: Thanks for the thanks, Matt ...

                ".....Unfortunately, we are getting off the original topic here, and it is probably time to draw this conversation to a close because no-one else is reading this anymore...." I would have thought the whole idea of these forums was to create debate, at least until the point where Ms Bee decides she's had enough and only lets you post about icecream. Seeing as firearm are used by our Police, and crowd control is a very current subject (though even I'm not keen on the idea of microwaving students), I'd say debates about Police attituide and the public attitude to policing methods are rellevant.

                "......because I now have higher degrees and work in universities...." Ah, if only it were true! I have also got a degree and have worked in an Uni, and I don't think I've ever worked anywhere with more of a sense of detachment from reality (and that's considering I once did a six-month contract working for the IT Department of the Church of England!). Amazingly, after all your life experiences, your academic training, and your psychaitric training, you still happilly shovel all coppers into one little box as though they were factory-made in batches. I think the psychiatric term is deliberate dehumanisation, where your prejudices about a group of people that share a common trait (in this case a copper's uniform) mean you automatically expect the same behaviour of anyone sharing from that group. Newsflash - coppers are people too, they usually have very political views of a varied range, different beliefs and aspirations, and cannot be lumped into one box. Yes, there are "bad" coppres, but they are the minority. I don't assume all uni lecturers are clueless wastes-of-oxygen just becasue a few of mine were.

                ".....six officers with a very small, well-known bloke who was known to be gobby...." Yes, and was he being gobby with six officers in attendance? Part of policing is knowing when to call in re-inforcements to AVOID trouble. I have seen gobby individuals facing off a copper go very quiet when they see the riot van turn up, you might have seen the same if you've been out in one of our cities on a Saturday night. The trouble is sometimes they can't get the reinforcements and the gobby individual becomes a violent individual and someone - usually the gooby tw*t - gets hurt, because it's a lot harder to restrain a violent individual determined to cause trouble by yourself than with five colleagues, and people like you then grumble about "Police brutality". You also assume the coppers should have stuck around when I've no doubt your unit would have had their own security who are responsible for your protection, most hospitals seem to have had similar since the late 80's. If you were unhappy about your personal safety you should have asked your security team for help or asked the coppers to stay - they probably assumed a trained psychiatric nurse would be able to assess the situation and know to ask if they needed some help. Of course, it could have been the way you glared in hostility at them the minute they appeared which may have swung things to the "f*ck that for a laugh" option.

                ".....At least, you seem to be saying that a person, once (or maybe twice) labelled as a criminal or mentally ill sufficiently to require hospital treatment, should always be treated as such....." Yes, so when was the last time you saw coppers with the time to spare to wander around asking people on the street their medical history on the off chance they'd find a "nutter"? They don't. It is almost certain that the people they brought in to you were brought in for a reason, unfortunately for the mentally disabled because the public have called the coppers to complain about something they have done or becuase they are doing something that puts them at risk to themselves. Some coppers even use the offence of loitering as an excuse to get them in and out of the cold. I have known coppers that have stayed hours after their shift has ended, ringing round hospitals, hostels and even other stations so they can get a tramp or runaway a bed or a cell for the night so at least they're out of the snow. I dated one Jill that was known for it, so much so that her nickname down the station was Polly after the hotel maid in Faulty Towers. Whilst I suspect your job was not an easy one, you don't seem to have put any thought into how difficult a job it was for the Police to interact with your patients given their limited legal options.

                ".....I am (and always have been) a believer that it is better that ten guilty people go free than one innocent party be wrongfully punished....." So, you expect the guilty to be punished? So how do you expect them to get to the punishment stage without the coppers first arresting them? And, given that many people don't meekly accept the idea of being arrested (especially not Saturday-night drunks and anarchists at student protests), how do you expect the Police to do so without using some force? And then, how do you expect them to deal with armed drunks, like Mark Saunders, whom seem intent on death by copicide? In Mr Saunders' case, the options were zero - he was outside the range of a Taser and definately a truncheon, would not relinquish his weapon, had already fired it in a manner dangerous to the public (and the Police officers), and finally and deliberately aimed it at a copper. In that case, the microwave cannon that JaitcH is squealling about may have been the perfect option as a few blasts would probably have made Mr Saunders so uncomfortable he would have given up. Of course, it could also have pushed him into more shooting, but then that would have to be a decision made by the coppers at the time. In the event, Mr Saunders made an unacceptable threat to an officer's life by deliberately pointing his gun at him, so the Police shot him. Coppers have the right of self-defence too, you know.

                You mentioned you watched the Police using heavy-handed and "illegal" tactics on the TV report of a student protest. The majority of students on the current demos in the UK want to protest in a legal manner, in fact they want the anarchists, vandals and other violent elements to take a hike because every time they show up the public gets a media frenzy of illegal "student" behaviour and that means the public are unsympathetic. The Police are happy to let the students protest when they do so in a legal manner, but when they stood back and assigned a small number of coppers, they had the Millbank Tower invasion, so you must be very obtuse to think they will be doing anything other than mass-policing of any ongoing student demos! A relative in the Met says the Police are chuffed that the organisers of the November 30th protest deliberately left the announced route and tried to escape the Police cordons as it means the Police now have a reason to question applications for protest marches from the same groups. And also because the frenzied pace of the march meant most students were too tired and confused to do anything other than slog along in the anarchists' wake! The November 28th protest at Lewisham Town Hall also did the student cause zero favours, it just made them all look like over-privelleged vandals. Several hours of peaceful protest got zero TV coverage, all the public saw was the footage of the riot.

                All it would take would be some idiot following JaitcH's advice and crippling a policehorse (and if they do, expect said "heroic victim" horse to be on the TV news the next morning), and middle England's dwindling support for the students will disappear. And that's the homes for the majority of our uni students. We may raise an eyebrow at students breaking windows, tut at the stupidity of throwing an extinguisher off a roof, but injure one of Gawd's "dumb creatures" and the public's support nosedives.

                /"Pedantic grammar nazi alert" as it's the closest we have to "ivory tower occupant detected alert" :P

  23. Danny 14 Silver badge


    "I'm looking for a really big gun that holds a lot of bullets"

    God bless you young man.

    (I love that film).

    All this computer controlled kit is great when it works and becomes a club if its battery runs out.

  24. Juan Inamillion
    Thumb Up

    @Black Box


  25. Gavin McMenemy

    Factual Error

    It was Val Kilmer who killed Alfred Molina over a game of cards.

  26. E.
    Paris Hilton

    But still no...

    ...BFG 9000.

    Paris, because she knows the value of a big weapon.

  27. Anonymous Coward

    Israeli ideas and weapons...?

    - Corner shot: a 9mm or .45 in a special M16-size body that can be bent to shot 90º around corners while covered, with cameras on the scope. No more peeking around corners and getting shot. Really simple, but not really practical.

    - Whats-its-name RPG-type weapon, that can be propelled by a regular M16 bullet to blast doors from its hinges, releasing the M16 afterwards for regular use.

    - 'Smart' artillery shell with fins and guidance that lands anywhere a soldier can lock a laser sight, just like smart bombs deployed by planes. The trick was making the electronics survive the cannon blast and high-Gs.

    - The same of the XM-25, but with 40mm grenade-size shell, and it could be launched by an M16 grenade-launcher. Either killing everything inside a bunker (delayed fuse) or opening a large hole in a wall (detonate on impact). Or something close to it.

    It was showed either on Discovery or TLC, and all of them were Israeli ideas. 1 year or more ago.

  28. John 62

    District 9 weapons lab

    First District 9 put me off prawns and now I read about gun labs and all I can think of is...

    "No, sir, I will not pull de trigga. Sir, I will _not_ pull de trigga." **kzert**

  29. Magnus_Pym

    If you like weird...

    And you wouldn't be here if you didn't. You should look at the list of nazi secret weapons. They didn't have an overall authority for wepons development and this allowed 'inventors' to tout there ideas aound all the different departments of war until they found a symapthetic ear. This lead to some amazing war tech but also some amazing duds.

    See Dr Zippermayer's sound cannon and the Dr Porsche's MAUS. Also they had a shoot-round-corners machine gun as mentioned earlier in the comments.

  30. Mips
    Jobs Halo

    America of the bullet?


    Did anyone notice? American history apparently starts in 16th century. What happened to the 10 millennia before with Clovis points and all? Indians with bows and arrows and spears. South America managed a whole bloody history very nicely without a gun in sight.

  31. Ross 7

    <-- Doh, numpty

    I saw "7.62x54mm5" and thought "wtf?!? The Russians are making ammo in 5 dimensional space?!?!" Then I saw the boot notes....

  32. Craig 28

    Re:Smart artillery shell

    As much as I hate to give the yanks even more credit that was on Future Weapons and was the American Excalibur shell I believe.

    Not that the Israeli aren't running a lot of inventive projects disproportionate to their size relative to the US of course, they just aren't the be all and end all. In fact it seems to me that most of their projects involve small arms rather than artillery and the like.

  33. Stuart Halliday
    IT Angle

    Back in the real world...

    No mention of the ultra-secret EMP gun then?

    Or maybe we should wait until WikiLeaks tells us about this wonder gun. Now that at least would be relevant to IT issues?

  34. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    metal storm

    What, no mention of the outrageously excessive offerings from Metal Storm?

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