Machine Gun: The Development Of The Machine Gun From The Nineteenth Century To The Present Day
The machine gun had a dramatic effect on the conduct of warfare one or two men operating a single machine could produce the same weight of fire as a squadron of rifles, and when used against an inferior enemy, the effect could be devestating. During the First World War, the use of the machine gun in conjunction with massed barbed wire and other obstacles put an end to battlefield mobility until new weapons and tactics could be devised. This book describes the development of the machine gun from the earliest models to the present day. The focus is very much on portable infantry weapons used in the support role, so automatic cannon of 20mm and larger calibres are excluded. The categories of weapon included are, therefore, Light Machine Guns [LMGs], a term which includes the Squad Automatic Weapon [SAW] and Light Support Weapon [LSW] Medium Machine Guns [MMGs] Heavy Machine Guns [HMGs] and General Purpose Machine Guns [GPMGs]. One specialist variety of machine guns is included in a separate chapter: the grenade machine gun [GMG], also known as the automatic grenade launcher [AGL]. With a country-by-country breakdown of machine guns, including comprehensive appendices of gun and ammunition data, along with hundreds of photographs, this is a comprehensive study of a most effective battlefield weapon.