With an eye toward becoming a more combat effective force, the Army has updated its small-arms training and standards.
From hard-charging airborne infantrymen to cooks to mechanics to admin Soldiers, the new shooting standards are aimed at making every Soldier, not just a better shooter but also more tactically savvy.
Covered in the 800-page Training and Qualification-Individual Weapons manual (TC 3-20.40), the new shooting standards seek to improve the combat effectiveness and lethality of Soldiers regardless of their Military Occupational Specialty (MOS). The Manual applies to all components of the Army (Active Duty, Reserve, National Guard), and covers four small-arms categories: pistols, rifles/carbines, automatic rifles, and sniper rifles.
Command Sergeant Major Robert K. Fortenberry, the senior enlisted leader at the Army’s School of Infantry, who also oversees the new marksmanship initiative, said in a press statement that “it’s exactly what we would do in a combat environment, and I think it’s just going to build a much better shooter. It was just time for a re-blue [a term used to describe the protection of steel weapons against rust]. It’s not to say that what we were doing in the past was wrong. We killed a lot of bad guys in Iraq and Afghanistan and all over the world with our current level of marksmanship training. So it’s not that the old way of firing didn’t teach you how to shoot.”