back to article Canadian sniper makes kill shot at distance of 3.5 KILOMETRES

A Canadian sniper has reportedly shot dead an Islamic State terrorist from the astonishing distance of 3,450 metres – more than two miles away. The astonishing feat of marksmanship took place within the last month "in Iraq", according to the Toronto Globe and Mail. A "military source" – almost certainly the Canadian armed …

Anonymous Coward

I've read Slim's book "Defeat into Victory" and hold him in high regard. He was a modest and capable general, well liked by the troops, both Indian and British (I read a British soldier's account from the trenches). But if your view of British officers is of holding their chin up, unflinching against hostile fire, then I think you've been reading only British accounts of that history. Even Slim's early chapters describe a chaotic and panicked retreat from Burma and Singapore. But you have to read other accounts, especially Indian accounts of the same events to understand that in retreat the British empire and its army often were far too concerned with their own safety at the expense of the civilian refugees, even blocking fleeing, starving civilians from exit roads so that they and their families could flee first. They saw the British take food from precarious and starving villages and use it as a stockpile to ensure their own food safety in Europe and elsewhere. Far more Indians than British died as a result of WW2 and many of those deaths were due to the British efforts to save themselves at the expense of their subjects. No doubt there was bravery too, on the part of the British (and Indians, Americans and troops from a number of other nationalities) in the battles of Imphal and Kohima and in the subsequent recapture of Burma and Singapore. But British behavior during that initial thumping at the hands of the Japanese in Burma guaranteed that their already precarious empire in India was all but finished.

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Anonymous Coward

> Suppose our putative Taliban is out on a battlefield

Suppose we buy him a GPS and point him back to Afghanistan so he can get to the right battlefield.

The events in question happened in Iraq and involved a so-called islamic state affiliated person, "Dr" Holdsworth.

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Whatever speed it's going, once it leaves the end pf the barrel it's subjected to 10m/s^2 downwards acceleration in addition to whatever air friction is slowing it down by.

How far does a dropped object fall in 10 seconds? That's more-or-less the vertical amount you need to compensate when aiming (the height of the Shard is about right)

Even with modern measuring instruments capable of dynamically measuring air movements along the path that's a hellaciously impressive shot.

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"In a BBC interview, Harrison reported it took about nine shots for him and his spotter to range the target."

He also described how during the ranging, the bullets were landing far enough away from the target that their impact probably wasn't audible over the firefight the target was sniping at (and without hearing protection, you're not going to hear much after firing a few shots anyway)

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"Just to add into the mix, no one here knows what the difference in altitude was between the sniper and the target."

This was covered in the releases. The Sniper was on top of a high rise building whilst the target was at ground level, so the answer is "considerable"

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450g for a claw hammer?

What are you driving, push-pins? Mine runs 650g, near enough. (Vaughn 23oz California Framer ... probably a trifle heavy for a 40 hour work week, but I like it for my needs).

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Re: Hydrostatic Shock

crystalline structures react vastly different to being shocked than soft, wobbly tissue.

a diamond shatters to dust when hit with a hammer, humans in general do not do that (sadly?)

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Re: @patientone

Add to this the first rule of armed combat, "If the enemy is in range, so are you." (if you have equivalent weapons)

Also, "If the enemy has more capable weapons than you, them being out of range doesn't mean you're safe." example, You have a 5.56 assault rifle, the enemy has a .300 Winchester Magnum sniper rifle and is 1000m away. You stand no hope of hitting them but you're toast.

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Am I being stupid, or does this paragraph have something missing?

"Thanks to the incredibly long distance for the shot, the sniper's target would have heard the boom of the round being fired approximately a tenth of a second before it hit, with the sound wave reaching him 9.88 seconds after the shot was fired. Had the sniper been 250m closer, his target would not have heard it coming."

The bullet spent 9.7s in the air according to the last part of the article, and the sound took 9.88s to get to the target, so how would the target have heard the boom of the round being fired 0.1s *before* it hit?

Have some of the numbers been flipped around or am I missing something?

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Re: Am I being stupid, or does this paragraph have something missing?

I assume that the round was supersonic for most of its path, otherwise the sound of the shot (direct path) wouldn't have taken almost the same time as the 'hit' via a parabolic path.

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(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Am I being stupid, or does this paragraph have something missing?

Gah. The numbers are right - I must have mentally transposed them when writing this up and drawn the wrong conclusion by mistake.

He literally wouldn't have heard it coming.

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Re: Am I being stupid, or does this paragraph have something missing?

Welcome to VooDoo

Air pressure, temperature, wind and direction, Humidity ... Sound or RF? It's all a SWAG (Scientific Wild Ass Guess).

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Am I being stupid, or does this paragraph have something missing?

It just strikes me that these kind of descriptions and discussions always include descriptions which do not use SI units. So what does that say about the occurence of these events and the people describing them, I wonder?

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Re: Am I being stupid, or does this paragraph have something missing?

SI units? Pah.

How many Reg standard Linguine did the bullet have to travel? Real metrologists need to know.

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Go

Re: Am I being stupid, or does this paragraph have something missing?

When dealing with US non-standards, try and use the following

Distance - furlongs

Volume - Gills for small quantities and acre-feet for large

Weight - stones

Tine - fortnights

and so no.

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Bronze badge

I read a book by a former US Navy Seal (The Killing School: Brandon Webb) recently. There's some very interesting information about what a sniper has to learn and consider. Anyone who takes a shot like this, whilst in a hostile environment and manages to get on target is impressive. Canadians feature in the book as being quite good at the job..

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Anonymous Coward

Canadians vs Americans

I think this is a good example of 'less is more'. The Amercians would have more than likely going in all gins blazing and hoping for the best that something good gets hit. Canucks are more reserved (like the Brits) and aim to do more with less.

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Pint

Re: Canadians vs Americans

Have a lovely upvote for the cracking spelling error

Flaming gins all round!

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Coat

Re: Canadians vs Americans

Flaming gins all round!

Ineffective for sniper work - the bullets are too sloe.

Still, it's a tonic for the troops.

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Black Helicopters

Re: Canadians vs Americans

Canucks...aim to do more with less.

I remember that by the time the CH-124 helicopters were replaced they all had extra gauges installed to measure the change in mass due to parts falling off. The pilots had to really be on the ball and use both the fuel gauge and the parts meter to try and ballpark how many parts had been lost. This would often become more difficult as the flight went on as the fuel gauge would often fall off.

It was generally not recommended to fly with less than 80% of the parts still attached. For longer missions crews were provided with large baskets full of binder twine, duct tape and chewing gum.

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Re: Canadians vs Americans

The Amercians would have more than likely going in all gins blazing and hoping for the best that something good gets hit.

Nope... a sniper is a sniper is a sniper. They don't blast away (gins blazing) and hope. They're careful and methodic.

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Re: all gins blazing

Once we fire up the auxiliary ginerators there are no capacity problems.

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Re: Canadians vs Americans

>Nope... a sniper is a sniper is a sniper.

Yep from Carlos Hathcock to that Finnish dude (edit: Simo Häyhä) whose face got wrecked. Nationality doesn't matter all that much. You rarely hear it mentioned but not only did the North Vietnamese have a few good ones but I seem to remember the same with Iraqi insurgents and it wouldn't surprise me if ISIS does as well. Some men are kind of made for hunting other men regardless of nationality.

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Coat

Re: Canadians vs Americans

Ineffective for sniper work - the bullets are too sloe.

Still, it's a tonic for the troops.

Was he using a Martini-Henry rifle?

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Three of the top five long range sniping records are held by Canadians. The British sniper mentioned in the story who was the previous record holder had taken the record (by 45 metres) from another Canadian sniper. The record holder before that one was yet another Canadian.

Canada takes sniping very, very, seriously, and puts a lot of effort into it.

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Pint

Re: Canadians vs Americans

Was he using a Martini-Henry rifle?

Touché. Upvoted.

Wandering off-topic... here in Oregon, the "Don't Drink & Drive" roadside signs use a representation of a martini glass, of all things.

I find this highly amusing - the unavoidable mental image is of plaid-clad burly PNW lumberjacks daintily sipping their martinis in roadside taverns before getting in their logging trucks to weave unsteadily down the highway.

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Happy

Re: Canadians vs Americans

I like to have a martini,

Two at the very most.

After three I'm under the table,

After four I'm under my host.

==========

As no lumberjack said, ever.

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Re: Canadians vs Americans

Snipers are very unpopular PoWs.

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Re: Canadians vs Americans

Assuming they get taken prisoner rather than just killed.

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JLV
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Iirc the unit of one of the Canadian snipers in question, came under friendly fire by an USAF F16 a few weeks month later and 4 of them were killed.

This, 2002, was an early indicator of US trigger happiness as the pilot was reportedly dosed, as per policy, on stimulants and had no real reason to engage unidentified infantry outside of his designated area.

No disrespect intended to US airmen, but early US high command policy in Afghanistan was focused way too much on body counts and did not consider the drawbacks of civilian casualties in a COIN setting. This - and the willful neglect* of nation building of the Bush administration - probably did quite a bit to get Afghanistan to where it is today, despite the sacrifices of so many brave soldiers.

* read Douglas Feith's War and Decision (2007) and he pretty much brags about they weren't dumb enough to nation-build (along with bragging how great a job they did in Afghanistan).

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> but early US high command policy in Afghanistan was focused way too much on body counts

Tommy Franks is the single biggest asshat US general since Westmoreland (edit: forgot about Michael Flynn who was a lieutenant general, that guy is just a simple and plain traitor). Even his memoirs are supposedly a total dumpster fire where he tried to take credit for both Iraq and Afghanistan (hahaha dumbass). That and he said we were one terrorist attack from abandoning the constitution and putting him in charge. Funny how he also let Bin Laden escape to Pakistan as well.

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Re: Canadians vs Americans

"I like to have a martini,

Two at the very most.

After three I'm under the table,

After four I'm under my host.

==========

As no lumberjack said, ever."

Well, I can think of one lumberjack who may have said something like that....

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QgaRd4d8hOY

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Shootnote

Shurely?

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WTF?

12 000 inches --> 1000 foot offset?

Can that be right?

Testing out one of those new DARPA super-duper scopes?

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milliLinguine per furlong-metre

Pick a measurement system - metric, Reg or retro, and stick to it!!

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Boffin

Re: milliLinguine per furlong-metre

*sigh* the reg has already done this but the writer hasn't checked with the reg' s units and measurements desk.

For the record the shot covered a distance of 24642.8571 linguine (Lg) which is a hell of a distance to make tomato sauce...

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Re: milliLinguine per furlong-metre

> For the record the shot covered a distance of 24642.8571 linguine (Lg) which is a hell of a distance to make tomato sauce...

Seems to me that in this context linguine (Lg) should be converted to units of standard army rations.

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Re: milliLinguine per furlong-metre

Are we talking imperial rations or metric?

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Thumb Up

More detail please

If it was the first aimed shot, that's 'a record'. If it was part of a considered fusillade, and got lucky, well... congratulations anyway.

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Re: More detail please - or maybe less

If it was the first aimed shot, that's 'a record'.

Luckily for the shooter, the invigilators from the Guinness Book of Records weren't around to check exactly whose bullet ended up in the shootee. If I were a betting man, I'd guess that it was one from much nearer that arrived at the right time.

Talking of records, I'm personally all for the permanent rubbing out of IS, the Taleban, AQ, Boko Haram, and all the other religious tossers with a medieval mind set. I don't even mind if we have to bring back James Puckle's square barrel device to do it. But to go round trumpeting as a new record who's popped off a shootee at extreme distance would seem to me to be a very good way of inflaming the opinions of those who wish to be inflamed. And that group is primarily the dimwits radicalising themselves in Canada, the UK, US or Europe.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: More detail please - or maybe less

Read the article.

"There is a second location with eyes on with all the right equipment to capture exactly what the shot was."

And while I agree that using two cans full of ammo would (slightly) diminish the astonishing nature of the hit, even walking 10-15 shots in with the help of forward observers and spotters at this range requires a preposterous amount of skill, in addition to some luck. This was also then a team effort, where only the person pulling the trigger is likely in the limelight, even though the target may not have been more than a speck on the shooters scope at two miles out.

Keep in mind that at a certain point in long range marksmanship it becomes impossible to make a consistent and deliberate hits, just possible deliberate hits that found their targets. Due to the bullet flight times the fact the target didn't bend down and tie their shoes is out of the shooters hands. All they can do is try to put the bullet where the target is most likely to be when it gets there. That's when skill alone can't cut it. You would need both great skill and a degree of luck, accurate ballistics tables, a skilled spotter, and apparently Forward Observers who called the shots in.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: More detail please - or maybe less

Say what you like about Boko Haram, but "A Whiter Shade of Pale" is still a bloody good track.

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Re: More detail please - or maybe less

You hit one !

It wasn't the one I was aiming for

Nevermind

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Anonymous Coward

Re: More detail please - or maybe less

> the fact the target didn't bend down and tie their shoes is out of the shooters hands

That's the sort of thing that would really piss you off, when you see the bullet kick up dust right behind where the gentleman was supposed to be.

I guess I would just drive over and strangle him with my own hands if I came across someone so discourteous.

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Re: religious tossers with a medieval mind set

You missed the DUP.

We really can't complain about religious tossers with a medieval mind set in other countries now we have our very own in the government.

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Bootnote

Your correspondent knows a thing or two about long-range target shooting out to 1,000yds with a .308" Win Target Rifle, as defined by the NRA of the UK. Extreme long-range shooting with larger cartridges isn't something I've done much of, so if you think I'm wrong above, weigh into the comments section and show your working.

1,000 yards? Mere middling range. The Lee Metford rifle of 1888 was equipped with volley sights out to 3500 yards and they hit people at that range. (admittedly by telling an entire regiment "10 rounds volley fire at the target 3,500 yards in front of you, FIRE!")

Not quite single shot sniping, but shooting at this range isn't really, is it? ;)

By the way, nice shooting if you can actually hit anything at a thousand yards. That's a long shot.

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I have met someone who has shot a perfect 100 at 1000 yards. Unsurprisingly, she's on the GB match rifle team.

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