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NAT’L – MILITARY – Marines setting the bar higher on rifle range

His name was USMC Sergeant Carlos Norman Hathcock II, and he was the greatest Marine sniper of all time. Two tours in Vietnam, 93 confirmed kills and countless acts of bravery. Reportedly, he was an incredible woodsman with unmatched patience, traits that served him well in the jungles of Vietnam. Among Hathcock’s impressive stories of wartime success was a manhunt that required Hathcock to cross enemy lines to dispatch a North Vietnamese Army general. Nicknamed “whitefeather,” he went days without food, water, or sleep, crawling inch by inch, on his side, to safely get within range of the general. At 700 yards, he took out the target, then somehow crawled back to safety with VC in hot pursuit.

It is highly doubtful any member of the Corps will match or beat that record today, but it just got tougher to be a US Marine marksman. As of Oct. 1, active-duty Marines will be required to qualify with the new Annual Rifle Qualification, or ARQ, a modernized course of fire, Military.com reported. Instead of shooting at fixed targets from 200, 300 and 500 yards, the new course will force Marines to hit lethal zones marked on the head and chest of stationary and moving targets more like they would in battle.  [full article]

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