Mikhail Kalashnikov died :(

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by kanonfodr, Dec 23, 2013.

  1. knumbskull


    Jul 28, 2007
    well, he certainly changed the world.
  2. DeathFromBelow

    DeathFromBelow Never Forget. Banned

    Dec 23, 2010
    Horten, Norway
    He sure did. And for better I'd say. RIP.
  3. bassinplace


    Dec 1, 2008
    On a personal level, I don't find destruction particularly impressive or fascinating. But the guy you speak of obviously did and he did something about it. He followed his passion so good for him in that sense, I suppose. That's about the most positive spin I can conjure up on that one.
  4. DeathFromBelow

    DeathFromBelow Never Forget. Banned

    Dec 23, 2010
    Horten, Norway
    Not a big fan of violence and war myself.

    But he sure did level the playingfield. Take that as you may.
  5. knumbskull


    Jul 28, 2007
    dunno. it is a brilliantly designed machine and has put efficient firepower into the hands of the oppressed, on the one hand. on the other, well...

    i guess it's a case of don't hate the player, hate the game. etc.

    i've been taught how to use one (in the UK, so no live fire involved, sadly) - they are scarily small, cheap, easy-to-use weapons.
  6. pedroims


    Dec 19, 2007
    Sadly the preferred weapon of the Mexican drug cartels :(
  7. DeathFromBelow

    DeathFromBelow Never Forget. Banned

    Dec 23, 2010
    Horten, Norway
    Well, like I said...

  8. Saw this in the news this morning. Both he and his designs were clearly long lasting. Elegant in it's simplicity, certainly intriguing from an engineering standpoint.

    But I don't know what else to say, I guess I've seen too many pictures of child soldiers wielding it to put much of a positive spin on things. Probably a case of not blaming the tool, but, still it's the association I have in mind.
  9. P Town

    P Town

    Dec 7, 2011
    Of natural causes.
  10. fhm555

    fhm555 So FOS my eyes are brown Supporting Member

    Feb 16, 2011
    Almost as pervasive as religion and no matter what your personal POV, the AK family has no doubt been instrumental in shaping the world as we know it today.
  11. placedesjardins


    May 7, 2012
    I can see that I am among peace-loving people, which is good. But, I'll say it. I love war!

    Ever since I was a kid, I loved playing with G.I. Joe toys even though I didn't have a lot. I loved making military plastic models, tanks, planes, figures, and battleships. I played with toy guns. I studied the Civil War and WWII from library books, not related to school work in any way, shape or form. And of course, I loved galactic wars, including the show Battlestar Galactica and the Star Wars movie.
    So, the AK-47 is not really a "super" impressive weapon. It made its mark due to its utilitarian qualities. My favorite machine gun would be the M-60, the one Rambo used. My dream would be to shoot the M-60 while yelling, "Adrian".
  12. cba_bass


    Jul 9, 2013
  13. Speaking strictly as a former Soldier who's fixed one or two AK-47s, the design is fantastic for it's intended purpose: providing poorly-trained soldiers a reliable source of exceptional firepower. The design itself is a reverse-engineered Sturmgewehr 44, simplified by a russian farm boy, for a conscript to use and maintain. And it works brilliantly.

    It comes apart in 5 major assemblies; the open-bolt design lends itself to providing very good volumes of fire, and with the defined machining tolerances (very loose, especially compared to more modern weapons) you could cake it in mud, shake it off, and it still functioned.

    And remember, Mikhail Kalashnikov never attended any formal education for engineering - he was a farm boy who wanted to build farm machinery to make the worker's lives better but saw a need for this type of weapon. And it might frighten some, but his legacy is going to live on in struggle and revolution for the next 50 years and more. Few individuals could ever hope to have that kind of impact on world events, regardless of your views on that impact.

  14. It's an easy thing to say if you've never seen it up close and personal. Most veterans don't like to talk about it for a reason.

    I've only seen the results of urban gun violence in my hospital and once heard a full auto AK47 fired within a few miles of where I lived in college. My mother also narrowly missed the Von Maur shooting by about 20 minutes.

    I think Kalashnikov did his best to protect his homeland, as he and other Russians were sent to battle without weapons and expected to take weapons from fallen comrades. Resist and be shot by a Russian who was fortunate enough to be armed. It's unfortunate that his creation was used for so much evil.
  15. As an engineer, I can appreciate the rugged simplicity of the design, putting politics aside.

    Many many years ago I had the honor to work for a Bulgarian engineer (he defected from Bulgaria, his brother was shot and killed trying to defect). His philosophy was "function before form" meaning it needs to work first, looking nice comes second. He also stressed that the most elegant solution was usually the simplest one. Oh... and it had to be strong.
  16. He has a lot of blood on his hands.

    That being said, the AK-47 is an engineering masterpiece.

  17. burk48237

    burk48237 Supporting Member

    Nov 22, 2004
    Oak Park, MI
    Just finished reading "The Gun" which was the history of the development and distribution (continuing) of the AK47. The Irony of the Soviet era was that the "great Soviet industrial revolution" was basically implements of war. In 1948 Stalin gave out a dozen medals of innovation, 10 were for military equipment. There is still no great desire for Russian fashion, electronics or automobiles, but if you want to kill someone, with a military small arms, chances are you're going Russian.

    There is no doubt that a vast majority of the minor conflicts across the globe (small wars) wouldn't be near as lethal without the AK. The other preferred weapons while perhaps better are far more costly, and certainly too expensive for the hundreds of private small armies like the Lords Army, Hezbollah, Drug Cartels, Hamas (at least in their inception).

    Kalishnakov himself was conflicted. He was one of the rare winners of the Stalin era. Most were gulaged or purged for a new flavor of the month, Stalin didn't keep his friends long but Kalishnakov managed for the most part to stay on favorable terms with the leadership, well into the days of Kruschev and Andropov. Having said that, his story was full of holes and rewritten several times by the various editors of the official Soviet propaganda machine.

    The Soviets had captured Hugo Schmiesser who headed the design group that did the ST 44 so there is much debate as to the depth of Kalishnakovs contributions. It is still argued by many that Stalin wanted a figurehead to put a Russian face on the design of the AK. A kind of rags to riches hero story. We will probably never know. History, truth and the Soviet era are elusive. But there is no doubt that the AK47 probably influenced the history of the planet as much as any other invention in the 20th century.
  18. ubnomnar

    ubnomnar Supporting Member

    Dec 28, 2009
    So Cal
    One less ballet dancer :bag:

    Ooops... you said "Kalishnakov" :meh:

    According to CNN..."In 2009, Kalashnikov told CNN that two main qualities described the AK-47: simplicity and reliability.

    He said the question he hated most was whether he felt sorry about the hundreds of thousands of people that were killed as a result of his invention. He had a standard answer:

    "I've designed my weapon to defend the borders of our Fatherland, and let it continue to serve this purpose."

    Kalashnikov's 90th birthday, in November 2009, was celebrated in Russia nearly like a national holiday. In a televised Kremlin ceremony, then-President Dmitry Medvedev decorated him with the country's highest order, the Hero of Russia."