General: Enemy Closes Gap on Battlefield

NGAUS Washington Report
April 3, 2018

The Army has not done well for its soldiers who perform the up-close-and-personal combat, the commander of the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command said last week.

Speaking at the Association of the U.S. Army’s Global Force Symposium, Gen. Stephen J. Townsend said, “I would argue that other than night vision, we’ve really mostly relied on physical fitness, superior training and combined arms to prevail in the close fight for the last number of years. I would say in the final 100 yards, that edge is inadequate.”

The soldiers on the front need new weapons, new night-vision technology and new protective systems to maintain the advantage over adversaries, he said, according to Army Times.

“U.S. close-combat soldiers and Marines in our squads and platoons do not overmatch our enemies,” he said. “Our adversaries have access to weapons and tech that can enable them to close the gap with our forces.”

Referring to the M17, the Army’s new sidearm being fielded now, Townsend said, “Minus this new pistol that’s coming out, we haven’t done much for these guys here.”