Sniper: noun
A person who shoots from a hiding place, especially accurately and at long range.
“The terrorist was killed by a Marine sniper’s bullet in Iraq.”

The sniper is one of the most effective and accurate tools on the battlefield.

By using a sniper you don’t accidentally kill civilians which is quite common to the drone warfare of today.

The first time I was exposed to the world of snipers was when reading Carlos Hathcock’s book, Marine Sniper. From that moment, I was hooked but the sniper of Vietnam is very different from that of WWII, Korea, Iraq, and Afghanistan.


The Sniper of the Past

Snipers of 30 years ago would still do reconnaissance like snipers today but the methods and tools used were much more primitive than what’s available now.

Back then, they would hand-sketch target packages. Now, they shoot with an SLR camera, embedded in a digital package with a small ruggedized laptop, and send the data back to base via satellite.

Shots beyond 1,000 yards were very rare. The reasons were bullet and technology limitations, and a general lack of teaching and understanding of how longer shots require more data inputs than just distance, angle, and wind. We have to account for the spin of the earth on any shots past 1,000 yards which has become common for today’s snipers.

The sniper of tomorrow will have even more tools available.