WWII Firearms in Iraq Part 2
In the 2003 invasion of Iraq and subsequent occupation by American forces, history wormed its way into the hands of insurgents, who used whatever weapons they could lay hands on to fight the invaders. It was not uncommon to find firearms better suited for the museum than the battlefield.
PPSh-41. The Soviet Union’s primary submachine gun of World War II. With a rate of fire up to 1000 rpm, the PPSh gave Soviet soldiers volumes of firepower that German soldiers couldn’t compete with. Some six million PPSh’s were manufactured by the USSR between 1941-1947, and China made several million more, making the PPSh one of the world’s most produced firearms. No wonder it can be found in most conflicts.
With 1000 rpm, you can really saturate a room.
StG-44. The world’s first assault rifle, the Stg-44 was the pinnacle of German firearms technology at the time. The StG-44 had a rocky start, firearms designers forced to call it a submachine gun in order to thwart Hitler, who did not care for the kurz bullet concept and only wanted more SMGs. However, when Hitler finally saw the StG-44 in action (under the guise of MP44) he gave his consent for its full manufacture and christened it the “Sturmgewehr:” storm rifle. Although the StG-44 could not turn the tide of battle, it was the basis for every combat rifle today.
This could be in 1991 or 2003.
Photographic quality was kind of in a nebulous area around those time periods.
MG42. A true general purpose machine gun, the MG42 was one of the outstanding weapons of the war, with proven reliability, durability, simplicity and ease of manufacture. To this day the MG42 sees service as the MG3, and is virtually unchanged.
MG42 with a M1919, RPK, SG-43 and PPSh.
MP40. Of course.
Wz. 35. If I’m not mistaken, this is THE Wz. 35; a Polish anti-tank rifle that was so secret that until mobilization in 1939, the combat-ready rifles were held in closed crates enigmatically marked: “Do not open! Surveillance equipment!” Unlike other anti-materiel rifles of the time, the Wz. 35 did not use an armor-piercing bullet with a hard core, but rather a lead core, full metal jacket bullet. Due to the high muzzle velocity this was effective even under shallow angles, as instead of ricocheting, the bullet would “stick” to the armor and punch a roughly 20 mm diameter hole.
Less than 10 examples of the Wz. 35 still exist, making this an extremely rare and valuable firearm to both collectors and museums.