AP article on the ineffectiveness of the M855 round.
Dr. Martin Fackler, a former combat surgeon and a leading authority on bullet injuries, said the problem is the gun, not the bullet. The M4 rifle has a 14.5 inch barrel â€” too short to create the velocity needed for an M855 bullet to do maximum damage to the body.
My understanding is that the 5.56×45 needs to be doing over 2800 fps to do serious tissue damage, which it achieves being fired out of an M16, but not an M4.
Rules of war limit the type of ammunition conventional military units can shoot. The Hague Convention of 1899 bars hollow point bullets that expand in the body and cause injuries that someone is less likely to survive. The United States was not a party to that agreement. Yet, as most countries do, it adheres to the treaty, according to the International Committee of the Red Cross.
I would argue if our adversaries can behead people, we can use effective ammunition.Â To me, this is the real problem.Â With the right kind of ammo, I think the M4 would be much more effective than it is with M855.
“One of the things I’ve discovered in guns is that damned near everyone is an expert,” he says. “And they all have opinions.”