USAR CMP and Practical Shooting

Formal military marksmanship programs began with what is now known as Conventional (bullseye) shooting. The emphasis was on pure marksmanship and for good reason. These events and courses were created just after the Industrial Revolution made mass-produced rifled firearms and cartridges readily available and relatively affordable. Having a long gun that was more than a bayonet handle, that allowed a trained user to hit specific, point targets at hundreds of yards away on purpose, placed the emphasis on getting that user capable of exploiting the potential. In the United States this evolved into the National Match Course for rifle, with the same ideas applied to pistols soon after. Most militaries began hosting and supporting Service Rifle and Service Pistol competitions to support this. In fact, in the United States our National Matches are federally mandated under U.S. Code 36 Chapter 407 (§ 40725.)

Of course, there’s more to small arms use than raw marksmanship. As Commonwealth nations began expanding their marksmanship programs to include on emphasis on more combat applications, other NATO countries began adopting their events. The U.S. Army Reserve Competitive Marksmanship Program followed suit, first by having the Service Rifle sponsor shooters at various Commonwealth-inspired NATO Combat matches. This would eventually lead to a separate Combat team.

Various new types of shooting events known as Practical and Action shooting started gaining a following in the late 1950s with formal organizing bodies at the national and international level forming in the 1970s. While there is obvious military benefit, militaries didn’t begin supporting this until the mid-1990s, notably when Merle Edington, then assigned to the active component Army Marksmanship Unit won the USPSA Nationals in 1994. The AMU formed a dedicated Action/Practical section shortly thereafter.

The Army Reserve has Soldiers competing in these Action/Practical events now. Here’s a notable example:

I’ve been pushing it hard since we last spoke and now I’m ranked #7 in the 3GUN Nation Club Series and #50 in the Semi-Pro Series. This past weekend I placed 13th in the 2015 Benelli Tactical Shotgun Championship and since my PCS this past February, I have competed in 23 matches in nine different states. I’m getting invited to the U.S. Shooting Academy to compete for my pro card.

Maj. Luke Gosnell
Operations Officer
2100th Military Intelligence Group
Wright-Patterson AFB, OH

Unlike the AMU, the USAR CMP does not currently have a dedicated Action/Practical team or section.

Let CMP Handle Army Surplus Vintage Firearms

(WASHINGTON, D.C.)—Congressman Mike Rogers made the following remarks after passage of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) of 2016 out of the House Armed Services Committee (HASC), which included his amendment to allow the Army to transfer its surplus vintage firearms to the Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP).

“As a gun owner and strong believer in the Second Amendment, my proposal is a common-sense approach to eliminating an unnecessary cost to the Federal government while allowing the very capable CMP to handle the sale of these vintage firearms that otherwise would just sit in storage. This amendment is a win – win for the taxpayer. I was pleased the amendment passed the committee and appreciate the support my colleagues on this proposal,” Rogers said.

Currently, the Army stores excess M1911A1 pistols, which used to be the standard U.S. Armed Forces sidearm, until it was replace by the Berretta 9mm pistol. Besides the 8,300 pistols that have been sold to law enforcement and transferred to foreign countries for a small price, the rest of the M1911A1 pistols are now being held in storage costing the taxpayer around $200,000 a year.

Transferring these vintage pistols to the CMP would allow them to inspect, grade, prepare for sale and sell these pistols. The CMP would reimburse the Army for costs associated with transferring the pistols. CMP South, headquartered in Anniston, Alabama, oversees sales. CMP North is headquartered in Camp Perry, Ohio.

Crime Index: Military vs. Civilian Gun Owners

With the recent coverage and concern of unarmed, uniformed military personnel being attacked in public, let’s look at crime statistics from the Federal Bureau of Investigation of various military posts and bases. These were selected for a safety brief for the Army Reserve Marksmanship Program as Team personnel participated in various events at these locations during Fiscal Year 2015.

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AASAM Overview

An overview article on the Australian Army Skill at Arms Meeting, as hosted annually at the Puckapunyal Military Area by the Australian Defence Force.

The Commonwealth countries largely invented the military combat-style matches formally recognized by NATO.