Marine scout snipers providing anti-pirate protection

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The Marines are back doing what they do best – kicking pirates ass. Marine Scout Snipers are being deployed to provide protection for counter-piracy teams in and around the Gulf of Aden, Arabian Sea, Indian Ocean and Red Sea. Navy.mil reports:

The nine-member sniper team brings multiple capabilities to CTF 151, including its ability to operate from an aerial platform with a variety of different weapons systems. The scout snipers use a Mk-11, which is the 762 sniper rifle; a 50-caliber M107 special application scoped rifle (SASR); and several different sets of optics to aid them in carrying out their mission.

“We have the ability to stand off of a target, visually see what is on the target and report that information to the VBSS teams so they understand — before they’re boarding — the number of personnel, if there are any weapons on board, if there are any type of foulings on the deck, if their hook point is obtainable, and, basically, give them a warm and fuzzy feeling that they’re not out alone out here, that they have snipers watching over them 100 percent of the time,” explained Benkie.

Emphases mine. That must be a good feeling :)

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More here.


Steve Johnson

Founder and Dictator-In-Chief of TFB. A passionate gun owner, a shooting enthusiast and totally tacti-uncool. Favorite first date location: any gun range. Steve can be contacted here.


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  • tarkan

    For years US customs had used Steyr AUG,must real difficult to snipe while hovering with target moving every direction,there was M14s with SEALs capturing Iran Ajr 1987 but no real active role there,any active usage of snipers in such circumstances?

  • jdun1911

    You got to have enormous marksman skills to shoot at the target that is moving while on a moving platform. And don’t forget about the vibration of the helicopter, distance, and windage.

  • http://calivc.com/forums/Solarforce-A-great-compact-and-light-weight-light-for-night-tim-t7211.html Heath

    That must take some serious skill to pull that off! I did some time on a VBSS team in the Gulf back in the 90’s. We didn’t have any such support.

  • Gespenster

    Unfortunately, I can’t sight specific explains but, I have heard reports the U.S. Coast Guard employs a sniper in their Helicopter Interdiction Tactical Squadron. (HITRON) I can remember that reports of HITRON success against drug smugglers. Nothing stops a speed boat faster then a .50 caliber round through the engine block.

    http://www.uscg.mil/history/webaircraft/AC_HITRON_History.asp

  • Cmathews

    http://coastguardnews.com/hitron-snipers-taking-on-smugglers/2008/06/04/

    Gespenster beat me to it, this is another article on it though.

  • Snake

    Myself, I use the XM 109. Longer range and not much drift. Coupled with a gyroscope, you have a steady platform and then you go for it. Range is 2500 meters with a 25mm round. Google it.

    Semper Fidelis

    Snake