FirstSpear TV

Jim Schatz – 9 Known Truths

Although Jim Schatz passed away, he left a great deal of knowledge with us, including the “9 Known Truths”, based on his experience in the Small Arms industry. I have a feeling they’ll still be as valid in a decade or more, as they are today.

9 Known Truths

General Thoughts on Modern Warfare and Small Arms Technology

1 The asymmetric threat, unencumbered by “western” doctrine and politics, exploits our capability gaps faster than we can react within our cumbersome infrastructure.

2 Kinetic Energy (KE) kill mechanisms (launched bullets, fragments) have been and remain state-of-the-art weapons technology since the 15th century. That will not change anytime soon so we should embrace and improve on it.

3 Man-portable “directed energy” technology is decades away. One cannot “schedule a break through”, regardless of what the sci fi writers and S&T community developers espouse.

4 For the ground combatant, pH and pI/K has not been markedly improved by so-called “Leap Ahead” or “Revolutionary” technology and “Star Wars” S&T projects, yet $B’s have been spent on unrealistic and undelivered promises.

5 Desired Target Effects (direct hits or effective target suppression) depends on aiming and launch “hold proficiency” (marksmanship) be it used for semi, burst or full auto KE fire, air-bursting engagements via accurate lasing, XM25 or “TrackingPoint”-style FS/FCS, or even directed energy “pulses”.

6 Repeatable First Shot hits/kills will never be readily accomplished due to the many “hold” and error factors beyond the control of the operator. Immediate through-optic BDA and rapid adjusted follow-on shots offer the greatest chance of improved target effects, BUT the equipment must provide that core capability to the trained operator.

7 Snipers as “force multipliers” exploit magnified optics, superior weapons, sights and ammunition to increase pH & PI/K at all ranges, especially those beyond assault rifle range. Rifleman can/should leverage that capability by employing affordable “paradigm shifting” precision enablers.

8 Training is paramount to effectiveness BUT advanced hardware enables advanced training and employment.

9 Incremental, available and emerging (and affordable) advancements in small arms, sighting and ammunition technologies offer the greatest return on investment and are waiting to be exploited.


10 Responses to “Jim Schatz – 9 Known Truths”

  1. Ted says:

    Pardon my ignorance, but what is ph and PI/K ?

    • AbnMedOps says:

      I’m thinking ph = “probability of hit, and PI/K = “probability of Incapacitation/Kill”…but I may be wrong.

  2. CWG says:

    Awesome. Hard to disagree with any of those points.

    He forgot truth 10. The DOD exists to spend money first, play future never airwar second, maintain naval superiority third, and do gross waste of spending money time ground fighting stuff last.

    • miclo18d says:

      Not to mention truth eleven: having the best weapons systems know to man, and not being allowed to put ammunition in said weapon for fear of negligent discharges. Or, not allowing the perfected human soldier to use said weapons because we are too afraid to kill our opponents for fear of bad press.

      • OkieRim says:

        Agree, and download that to training, the same applies from the first days of basic…

  3. miclo18d says:

    He said ‘paradigm shifting’….ugh.

    • Sgt A says:

      Just because it’s grossly overused elsewhere doesn’t mean it isn’t applicable here.

      Each iterative step in blue force capability in that area completely and totally changes the game regarding what enemy forces consider acceptable for operational activities. Best illustration of this is how the ‘designated marksman’ concept has been consistently invaluable in OEF/OIF.

  4. Mike Nomad says:

    #1: Nice putting ‘Western’ in quotes. I have to add #1A: “Western” Doctrine continues to pretend Boyd & OODA Loops do not exist.

    • AbnMedOps says:

      Within a bureaucracy as vast as ours (just reference those “How The Army Works” PowerPoints, about “systems of systems”), OODA Loops might as well be Fruit-Loops.

  5. James says:

    #6 sounds a whole lot like the ” Sniping, 4th generation” concept.
    Train DM to shoot as rapidly as he can while holding a approx 4moa group, hold at hip level inside 300 ,300-600 hold at head, first round is best guess, impact or trace spotted by shooter, hold for windage and elevation , fire three rounds as rapidly as you can maintain the group size.