logic of FMJ and JHP - Page 2

logic of FMJ and JHP

This is a discussion on logic of FMJ and JHP within the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; The prohibitions are against weapons that cause "unnecessary suffering." As paradoxical as it might seem, this prohibition isn't against killing the enemy, or killing lots ...

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  1. #16
    Member Array AgentX's Avatar
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    Mar 2006
    The prohibitions are against weapons that cause "unnecessary suffering." As paradoxical as it might seem, this prohibition isn't against killing the enemy, or killing lots of the enemy, or using a seemingly disproportionate amount of force (a 500 lb bomb to kill one man, etc.)

    The conventions recognize the essential act of war as killing other humans, or at least combatants... The idea is to outlaw weapons that cause suffering for suffering's sake, without regard to their ability to kill or stop a soldier on the battlefield. Thus, no poison (to cause seemingly superflous pain and incapacitation), glass fragmentation (invisible to x-rays once a wounded soldier is removed from the field), etc. The military may avoid using hollowpoint because of the prohibitions against dum-dums, but the military also likes 1) cheap ammo and 2) penetration of cover and body armor, which I think are the real reasons.

    That's not meant as a personal endorsement of the 'rules', but an explanation. The conventions don't seem as logical now as they must have seemed to those who lived through WWI, but that's the intent. The conventions aren't actually as ridiculous as they can sound, though...they don't try and make war somehow less deadly, just perhaps a little less painful to the poor shmoes actually taking the bullets. Maybe not too effectively, but it's a matter of perspective.

    By the way, there's absolutely no restriction on using .50 caliber rounds on personnel, by international convention, US law, or military policy, as is widely rumored and even taught in the military. The confusion on that one comes from the nomenclature of the M2 as a primarily an "anti-materiel" weapon...Marines and soldiers have apparently extended that to mean you're not *supposed* to shoot at people with it. Of course, they will say, on the supposed sly, "Well, you CAN shoot at their backpacks, weapon, or clothes..."


  2. #17
    Member Array ka0azs's Avatar
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    May 2005
    Dayton Ohio
    DoD JAG has supposedly ruled that JHP's are legal for counter terrorist operations, as they are not considred legal combatants, and are therefore carried by SpecOps types on those type of missions

    Also supposedly, the use of Hollow Point match ammunition for snipers has been approved as the intent of the HP is accuracy, not target performance.
    NRA Life Member

  3. #18
    VIP Member Array Blackeagle's Avatar
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    Oct 2006
    Columbia, SC
    Quote Originally Posted by AgentX View Post
    The prohibitions are against weapons that cause "unnecessary suffering."
    Ironically, many U.S. States prohibit the use of FMJ bullets on wildlife because they cause unnecessary suffering (better to use an expanding bullet and kill Bambi as quickly as possible I guess ).

  4. #19
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    Feb 2006
    The one thing that has not been mentioned here is that for the military the idea is not necessarily to kill the enemy. In most military operations it is better to disable an enemy soldier than to kill him. Why? Because if a soldier is disabled and unable to fight someone will have to take care of him. It is estimated that it takes five individuals to care for every severely wounded enemy, and it requires their care for an expended period. If the enemy is killed it takes an estimated three individuals only several hours to care for the deceased. The military as a whole does not care what kind of round is used as long as it severely injures the enemy.

    Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the universe. Albert Einstein

  5. #20
    Senior Member Array purple88yj's Avatar
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    Jun 2006
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    As the good dr_ said, one wounded soldier requires more manpower than a dead one.

    The Vietnamese recognized this and used it as frequently as possible.

    If a man dies, he requires no medical aid, and the rest of the squad can continue fighting. If he is "merely" injured, others rush to his aid to remove him from the battlefield and care for the damage.

    Viet snipers would hit one soldier. While he was reloading or moving, his buddies would start hitting the people caring for the one wounded. Now more people came to aid. Their hope was not to kill but to overwhelm our guys to the point that we would run for cover to regroup. In the meantime, they (the Viet snipers/troops) would be looking for better vantage points in which they could use to engage US and British forces.

  6. #21
    VIP Member Array Blackeagle's Avatar
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    The guys over at The Box O' Truth just put up the results of some tests they did on Dum Dum bullets. Quick summary of results:

    Cutting an X in the front of a pistol bullet may make it shed it's jacket, but the lead core remained intact.
    Cutting off the front of a rifle bullet or inserting it in the case backwards results in some expansion and fragmentation, but not as much as a modern JHP.
    Shooting stuff is fun.

  7. #22
    Senior Member Array mark555's Avatar
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    Jun 2006
    Center of the World Ma! Center of the World!
    I admit it I have not read all the replies, but I do know that the USAF has used JHP for years, 30 that I personally know of. They are issued to air crew for anti hijacking defense. Before the AF went to the M9 they issued JHP for the .38 along with a bean bag load.
    "Hell of a thing, killin' a man. Take away all he's got and all he's ever gonna have."
    - William Munny (Clint Eastwood in the Unfrogivin)

    “The graveyards are full of indispensable men.” – Napoleon Bonaparte

    “My Idea of a fair fight is beating baby seals with a club”

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