DIY Weapons of the Syrian Rebels
Nearly two years after the start of Syria's popular uprising, the conflict has evolved into a slow-moving, brutal civil war with many players and no clear end in sight. Multiple rebel groups across the country continue to fight President Bashar al-Assad's forces, using any weapons they can get their hands on. While the rebels are using many modern weapons, they've also come up with their own makeshift solutions. In these weapons workshops, anti-aircraft guns are welded to pickup trucks and armor shields are attached to machine guns and cars. Mortar shell nose cones are turned on lathes and explosives are mixed by hand. Homemade grenades are launched by jury-rigged shotguns or giant slingshots in the urban battlefields of Aleppo and Damascus. Gathered here are a few examples of the hand-built munitions of the Syrian rebels.
Go take a look. There's nearly 40 pictures taken from the rebels' munitions stash. There are some conventional machine guns, but the vast bulk of the weaponry are homemade bombs, mortars, and armored vehicles. Taking a look at most of it, it's hard to imagine that there aren't thousands of machine shops all over America that couldn't make gear ten times better.
I did have to take exception to this, though:
Here's the caption (from the link):
A Free Syrian Army fighter uses a catapult to fire a homemade grenade at Syrian Army soldiers during a fight in the Arabeen neighborhood of Damascus, on January 24, 2013.
That's not a catapult! That's a trebuchet! The counterweight, sling, and throwing arm are a dead giveaway. That picture just kicked over my gigglebox - how anachronistically ballistic! Not to mention that the guy in the foreground is holding a Handycam on the launcher while his friend with the Kalashnikov rifle prepares to fire...
Mortars, rockets, improvised explosives, armored vehicles; all of this manufactured in secret locations under wartime conditions. Bet they don't worry if their magazines hold more than seven rounds, either. Imagine how this will look in another few years when 3D printing has really taken off and the technology has time to mature and grow. Picture what they'd be able to do with some fancy polymer printing - AR lowers, pistols, all kinds of improvised weapons.
The genie is out of the bottle as far as gun control, folks. We've had well over 100 years of pretty much the same designs - while the materials used to make the firearms have changed and improved, the overall design hasn't changed much since the days of the 1911 and the Thompson submachine gun. We've had semi- and fully- automatic, removable box-fed weapons for well over 100 years (94 in the case of the Thompson). "High capacity" magazines for the same amount of time. These are not difficult items to manufacture. Pretending we can legislate crimes away is not going to work.
We're eventually going to have to own up and dig into the reason that people commit these crimes, not what tools they choose to commit crimes with.
THat is all.
Thanks to Yankeefried for the article!