French chief resigns live ammo incident

Discussion in 'Modern' started by comiso90, Jul 1, 2008.

  1. comiso90

    comiso90 Active Member

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    :shock: :oops: :| :rolleyes:


    PARIS (Reuters) - France's army chief of staff resigned on Tuesday after a soldier fired live ammunition instead of blanks at a weekend military show and injured 17 people, the presidential office said.
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    President Nicolas Sarkozy had pledged to react rapidly and severely following the incident during a military show by the Third Marine Parachute regiment, open to the public in the southern French town of Carcassonne.

    The resignation of General Bruno Cuche comes as France, which took over the rotating presidency of the European Union on Tuesday, looks to revamp its armed forces by slashing staff numbers and trying to ensure soldiers in the field are better equipped.

    "The President, the head of the armies, has accepted the resignation presented by army General Bruno Cuche, head of the land army," said a statement from Sarkozy's office.

    Sarkozy expected the armed forces "to draw every consequence with regards to the way they are organized and function," the statement said.

    Cuche answers to a higher-ranking officer in charge of the overall armed forces while Sarkozy is the ultimate head of the French military.

    The incident highlighted serious breaches in the use of arms and security during demonstrations at public military events, Defense Minister Herve Morin said in a separate statement.

    As a precaution, the defense ministry was suspending the use of blanks during open or public demonstrations, Morin said.

    DISCONTENT

    Speaking later to RTL radio, Morin said Cuche had alluded to such a resignation while traveling to meet the victims of the incident on Sunday, mostly members of the public including a 3-year-old boy.

    "As the head of the (land) army charged with the preparation and training of forces, he was the highest authority," said Morin.

    The boy was hit in the heart and in the arm as the crowd watched soldiers simulate an attack. His condition had stabilized after doctors operated on him.

    The soldier who fired the shots was taken in for questioning and was due to appear before a judge, who would consider the public prosecutor's request that the soldier be placed under formal investigation for "unintentional injuries."

    French media reported that the soldier had been placed under formal investigation.

    The French media has reported on low morale in some quarters of the military fuelled by government plans to slash military staff numbers, mostly to the detriment of support functions, and to close or merge some military bases.

    Some officers have spoken out anonymously against a military roadmap charting French defense strategy over the coming 15 years which Sarkozy unveiled on June 17 in the form of a government policy document.

    For some in the army, plans to cut 54,000 mostly administrative and support posts over the coming six or seven years and the way Sarkozy has handled defense matters points to a downsizing in military capability and ambition.

    French army chief resigns after live ammo incident - Yahoo! News

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  2. CharlesBronson

    CharlesBronson Well-Known Member

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    Amazing, there is a big, big difference between blank and live cartrigdes...the blank have no projectile, how a mistake of that caliber could happen ?
     
  3. comiso90

    comiso90 Active Member

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    Right...

    Which is more embarrassing, having a soldier that is twisted enough to load live rounds and targeting civilians or having a soldier stupid enough to do the same?

    Perhaps they chose to represent it as a mistake...


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  4. Matt308

    Matt308 Glock Perfection
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    If that was a mistake, it was a mistake of magnitudes. Blank cartridges are ABSOLUTELY distinguishable even to a moron who has been introduced to a high caliber weapon.

    I suspect this was pre-meditated.

    Note that a blank cartridge has a crimped upper case. This is easily contrasted with a cartridge that is loaded with a bullet (copper or painted depending upon military use).

    Something criminal has occurred. The question is who is responsible.
     

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  5. wilbur1

    wilbur1 Active Member

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    Guys no offense.....thier french
     
  6. Wildcat

    Wildcat Well-Known Member

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    This was my immediate thought also. You've got serious problems if your soldiers can't tell a blank from a live round.
     
  7. comiso90

    comiso90 Active Member

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    Yes Yes Yes...
    My comment in post #3 still rings strong.

    Recoil too. It's been a while since I shot blanks (bullets that is... no comments!) but I definatly remember the recoil was diminished.

    I suppose it depends on the load in the cartridge.

    It's a silly attempt at a cover-up.

    The jerk-offs at Columbine HS thought they were using blanks too! :rolleyes:

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  8. Matt308

    Matt308 Glock Perfection
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    In fact comiso, you are exactly right. In order for the piston/operating rod to work properly, a fitting must be put over the muzzle to ensure high enough gas pressures to cycle the action. If you don't have this muzzle blocking device, you can only fire ONE blank. If you have attached this muzzle blocking device and attempt to fire a live round... well, you don't accidentally kill 15 people on full auto. All that happens is you put yourself in hospital.
     
  9. Arsenal VG-33

    Arsenal VG-33 Member

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    There is no cover up, only negligence. I've been watching this unfold on TF1 satellite TV and through RF1 shortwave radio. This is appearing to be a horrible accident.

    The latest facts: No one died. Rumors were that a 3 year old child was severly injured and died enroute to the hospitol. Not true - The child was hurt at chest height but he/she is recovering well according to the doctors. According to the local Justice officials, it was a horrible accident. The sergeant ( 3rd RPIMa) was firing blank rounds during the first part of the demonstration, then unknowingly reloaded with a full magazine of live rounds he had in one of his vest pouches. This was the fatal mistake. This mag was not noticed during the safety inspections befor the show. It turned out to be a mag from a previous training exercise, which had been left in his tactical vest. He did not check all of his magazines. The live rounds blew away his blank adaptor. The soldier stopped firing (the FAMAS has a select fire 3-round burst and full-auto capability - It seems it was on full auto when the live round mag was inserted.) after he saw the explosion at the end of his muzzle. The report also said that several people were injured by the same bullets going through different bodies. Most of those attending were military families, 15 of which were injured, the other two were officers.

    A horrible and tragic mistake which could have been prevented with a thorough safety check on the soldier's part. Hopefully it will not happen again.


    Next time there's a friendly-fire incident between US troops, can we count on you to remind us that "They're Americans"? No offense, but wacky and crazy s**t happens sometimes, and it doesn't hurt to have a little sympathy for the victims.




    As for the French Army Chief of Staff resigning, that was utter nonsense. No need for him to resign, but much to the surprise of the French, Mr. Sarkozy is turning out to be quite an ass-hat in regards to the military.
     
  10. Matt308

    Matt308 Glock Perfection
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    How do you injure 17 people... even with a 3rd burst? And the "the same bullets going through different bodies" is very dubious. Even firing into a solid crowd the likelihood of a few rounds injuring that many people is physically remote. Assuming the circumstances are as stated...
     

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  11. Arsenal VG-33

    Arsenal VG-33 Member

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    Perhaps I didn't make myself clear enough....I do recall the report stating that the weapon was on full burst mode when the accident occurred-assuming it was a fully loaded, standard STANAG mag being used. I was simply pointing out the fact that the FAMAS has the capablility of either 3 burst of full burst selective fire.

    There is no cover up or conspiracy to cover up here. First speculations was that the soldier had a vendetta of some sort or simply "snapped", but this has been quickly disproven. I am curious to know why some here wish to believe it's a cover up/conspiracy of some sort.
     
  12. comiso90

    comiso90 Active Member

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    The report I heard didnt mention a whole clip, it just mentioned "Bullets in the pocket". Mistaking a whole clip I suppose is plausible but the weight difference of a clip of blanks and a FMJ is significant. Plus the recoil ...

    Even if it was nothing more then a mistake there are several points where a wrong decision was made or poor instinct prevailed
     
  13. trackend

    trackend Active Member

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    Agreed, there has to be more to this than meets the eye.
     
  14. JugBR

    JugBR Active Member

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    is that serious ? not joke ?

    man, i can figure hows french public opinion are dealing with that episode ! sarkozy is busted !
     
  15. Techos

    Techos New Member

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    If i remember well, you'll need a special device called "BTB" ( bouchon de tir a blanc" to peform a fire with blank cartridge with a FAMAS assault rifle.
     
  16. Techos

    Techos New Member

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    I'm agree with you, i made my " Tour of duty" ( in the french army) 25 years ago and you can be sure i would allways make the difference.
     
  17. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    We call them blank adapters and they are required by all weapons, if you are going to fire blanks. They come in all different shapes and sizes depending on the weapon, and keep most of the gas from escaping so that the bolt will return to the pre firing position with out having to pull the recharging handle.

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  18. Torch

    Torch Well-Known Member

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    sounds like a fubar big time.
     
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