Military.com reports that the Marines will be replacing the M249 SAW with the M27 Infantry Automatic Rifle.
Marine infantry squads will replace their M249 light machine gun with a highly accurate, auto rifle geared for fast-moving assaults. In late May, Gen. James Amos, commandant of the Marine Corps, approved a plan to field the M27 Infantry Automatic Rifle to all Marine infantry battalions.
“In the training, the Marines were employing it in the semi-auto mode until they closed within 100 meters or so of the enemy and then switch to full auto to provide very accurate high rates of fire,” he added. “We don’t lose the ability to gain fire superiority.”
I suspect the M249 is only being replaced in certain circumstances, rather than the dumping of the light machine gun for good.
[ Many thanks to Lance for emailing me the link. ]