Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator of the AK rifle series, dies

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Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator of the AK rifle series, dies

Postby Brace » Mon Dec 23, 2013 7:33 pm UTC

http://en.itar-tass.com/russia/712677?f ... 8007430657

MOSCOW, December 23. /ITAR-TASS/. Mikhail Kalashnikov, the renowned Russian arms designer, passes away, Viktor Chulkov, the press secretary of the president of Udmurt Republic, told Itar-Tass on Monday.
Mikhail (Timofeyevich) Kalashnikov was born in Russia’s Altai region on November 10, 1919. His system of automatic small arms has been considered unrivaled in the world for the past 50 years. “I will be the first one to shake hand of the person who creates a better rifle,” he said the now-iconic phrase 30 years ago.


The Henry Ford of guns just died. Sad day.
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Re: Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator of the AK rifle series, die

Postby Spambot5546 » Mon Dec 23, 2013 9:55 pm UTC

I wonder if there's any weapon out there that's been used to killed more people than the Kalashnikov Automatics. It's had a damned prolific life.

Edit: Just to be clear, I'm not trying to imply something with this question, I'm just legitimately curious.
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Re: Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator of the AK rifle series, die

Postby Djehutynakht » Tue Dec 24, 2013 12:09 am UTC

When I googled "Number of People Killed by weapon" immediately Google had a news story of his death as the top result, with the title claiming the AK killed more than any other gun.

I'm not entirely sure if it's true, but I'll let someone else dig further.



I mean, I'm assuming that if one loosely groups swords or spears or anything of that kind, the number would at the very least some close if not exceed the AK, but I'm assuming it tops all other guns.

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Re: Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator of the AK rifle series, die

Postby EdgarJPublius » Tue Dec 24, 2013 12:47 am UTC

Not sure, the Smith & Wesson J- and K- frame revolvers may come close to or exceed AK numbers. At least within the U.S. pistols kill vastly more people than rifles, and the S&W .38s are easily the most widespread pistols. K-frames particularly have been in production since the 1890s, significantly longer than AK pattern rifles.

Wasn't there a thread here a while back about historical death tolls for different weapons? I tried looking for it but the search function is acting up and I just ended up watching caramelldansen instead.
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Re: Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator of the AK rifle series, die

Postby Deva » Tue Dec 24, 2013 2:48 am UTC

EdgarJPublius wrote:Wasn't there a thread here a while back about historical death tolls for different weapons? I tried looking for it but the search function is acting up and I just ended up watching caramelldansen instead.

This?

Djehutynakht wrote:When I googled "Number of People Killed by weapon" immediately Google had a news story of his death as the top result, with the title claiming the AK killed more than any other gun.

I'm not entirely sure if it's true, but I'll let someone else dig further.


I mean, I'm assuming that if one loosely groups swords or spears or anything of that kind, the number would at the very least some close if not exceed the AK, but I'm assuming it tops all other guns.

Searched for deadliest firearms. Found United States homicide totals from 2005 to 2009. (Source)

Code: Select all

Expanded Homicide Data Table 8
Murder Victims by Weapon, 2005-2009

                                               2005   2006   2007   2008   2009
Total                                        14,965 15,087 14,916 14,224 13,636
Total firearms:                              10,158 10,225 10,129  9,528  9,146
Handguns                                      7,565  7,836  7,398  6,800  6,452
Rifles                                          445    438    453    380    348
Shotguns                                        522    490    457    442    418
Other guns                                      138    107    116     81     94
Firearms, type not stated                     1,488  1,354  1,705  1,825  1,834
Knives or cutting instruments                 1,920  1,830  1,817  1,888  1,825
Blunt objects (clubs, hammers, etc.)            608    618    647    603    611
Personal weapons (hands, fists, feet, etc.)^    905    841    869    875    801
Poison                                            9     12     10      9      6
Explosives                                        2      1      1     11      2
Fire                                            125    117    131     85     99
Narcotics                                        46     48     52     34     45
Drowning                                         20     12     12     16      8
Strangulation                                   118    137    134     89    121
Asphyxiation                                     96    106    109     87     77
Other weapons or weapons not stated             958  1,140  1,005    999    895

^: Pushed is included in personal weapons


Came across a map of gun popularity by country (including its military). (Source)
Military Gun by Country.jpg

Located nothing on deaths by firearm model, besides recent statements. May have used poor search terms. (Included "model" late, for example.)
Changes its form depending on the observer.

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Re: Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator of the AK rifle series, die

Postby addams » Tue Dec 24, 2013 3:42 am UTC

Yes. This man's invention has played a part in man's inhumanity to man.
I am on the side of Peace.

To speak in praise of an inventor of war machines and his inventions may seem wrong.
It is complicated. It is simple.

I learned about his guns from people that had used them and had suffered losses from them.
I learned to respect the machine, first. Then I learned to respect the man.

His guns were brilliant. He was, too.
He made several statements over the course of his life
about how he regretted the way his machines were used.

They are The most common and easy to handle guns on the planet.
He made a good machine and I respect that.

It took a long time for me to learn to understand why we need guns.
That is my personal journey.

He made a machine that is useful.
That was his personal journey.

The man was brilliant. I never met him.
I have been reading about him, most of my life.
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Re: Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator of the AK rifle series, die

Postby Derek » Tue Dec 24, 2013 7:45 am UTC

EdgarJPublius wrote:Not sure, the Smith & Wesson J- and K- frame revolvers may come close to or exceed AK numbers. At least within the U.S. pistols kill vastly more people than rifles, and the S&W .38s are easily the most widespread pistols. K-frames particularly have been in production since the 1890s, significantly longer than AK pattern rifles.

Wasn't there a thread here a while back about historical death tolls for different weapons? I tried looking for it but the search function is acting up and I just ended up watching caramelldansen instead.

I highly doubt it. You're considering deaths in one country with a low death-by-gun rate. The AK-47 and related guns have been used in dozens of countries plagued by decades of civil wars, as well as several major international wars.

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Re: Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator of the AK rifle series, die

Postby davidstarlingm » Tue Dec 24, 2013 5:51 pm UTC

I'm guessing the death toll from civil wars and international conflicts (in which assault rifles like AK and AK knockoffs are the preferred weapon) absolutely dwarfs the death toll from shootings in the US.

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Re: Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator of the AK rifle series, die

Postby addams » Tue Dec 24, 2013 6:05 pm UTC

davidstarlingm wrote:I'm guessing the death toll from civil wars and international conflicts (in which assault rifles like AK and AK knockoffs are the preferred weapon) absolutely dwarfs the death toll from shootings in the US.

Is this American Exceptionalism?
Is it funny?

Remember Gettysburg?
What were those guys using?

Compare and contrast those two machines.
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Re: Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator of the AK rifle series, die

Postby EdgarJPublius » Tue Dec 24, 2013 6:14 pm UTC

It's probably closer than you think. Only a handful of 20th century conflicts have been more deadly than the worldwide homicide rate over the same period. And most of those occurred before production of the AK-47 started, but after the S&W Model 10 was already widespread (The Model 10 served in both world wars, the AK in neither).

Edit: also not saying that specifically U.S. firearm homicides outnumber worldwide conflict deaths. I'm only extrapolating from information I have to posit that the family of S&W .38 revolvers is responsible for a relatively high proportion of worldwide firearm homicides.
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Re: Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator of the AK rifle series, die

Postby Brace » Tue Dec 24, 2013 6:23 pm UTC

Handguns don't get much use in war though. I don't think common infantry even carry them generally. So I think that aspect is negligible.

Also, it strikes me that Kalashnikov's invention killed more people than Oppenheimer's invention, even though the latter's had more political impact.
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Re: Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator of the AK rifle series, die

Postby addams » Tue Dec 24, 2013 6:33 pm UTC

Brace wrote:Handguns don't get much use in war though. I don't think common infantry even carry them generally. So I think that aspect is negligible.

Also, it strikes me that Kalashnikov's invention killed more people than Oppenheimer's invention, even though the latter's had more political impact.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/J._Robert_Oppenheimer
Links are nice.
Not everyone knows what Oppenheimer did with his short life.

Those two men had something in common.
What is it?

Other people used the tools they made possible?
right?

Yes. Oppenheimer's gun was not a tool Of The People.
Don't give commoners atomic weapons.

Fine! Commoners have atomic weapons in Virtual Worlds!
How do the common people behave with their atomic guns in virtual worlds?
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Re: Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator of the AK rifle series, die

Postby EdgarJPublius » Tue Dec 24, 2013 7:25 pm UTC

I'm not so sure about that. How many Atomic bombs feature prominently on national flags? Fat Man isn't exactly an international symbol of revolution.
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Re: Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator of the AK rifle series, die

Postby Tyndmyr » Tue Dec 24, 2013 9:03 pm UTC

If we are including war, the AK wins. Deaths in war vastly outstrip the rate of death from crime. Pistols are nearly irrelevant to wartime casualties, and are not primary weapon systems.

Among the rifles, the AK is wildly popular...if you include it's variants as the same gun, then it should win. It's seen pretty continuous service over a wide area, whereas western militaries were more prone to change out battle rifle systems.

Second place would likely be the Mauser, followed by the Mosin Nagant. These weapons featured heavily on the eastern front of WW2, which utterly dwarfed the western one. I would imagine you would have to go through rather a list of firearms before one got to a pistol. Even popular civil war muskets have a helluva body count.

Keep in mind that exact numbers and perfect certainty as to the list are likely impossible. War is messy, and at best, we get approximations of the carnage.

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Re: Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator of the AK rifle series, die

Postby yedidyak » Tue Dec 24, 2013 10:58 pm UTC

Over the history of wars, I would guess typhoid or cold have the highest body count.

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Re: Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator of the AK rifle series, die

Postby Mambrino » Wed Dec 25, 2013 12:19 am UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:If we are including war, the AK wins. Deaths in war vastly outstrip the rate of death from crime. Pistols are nearly irrelevant to wartime casualties, and are not primary weapon systems.

Among the rifles, the AK is wildly popular...if you include it's variants as the same gun, then it should win. It's seen pretty continuous service over a wide area, whereas western militaries were more prone to change out battle rifle systems.

Second place would likely be the Mauser, followed by the Mosin Nagant. These weapons featured heavily on the eastern front of WW2, which utterly dwarfed the western one. I would imagine you would have to go through rather a list of firearms before one got to a pistol. Even popular civil war muskets have a helluva body count.

Keep in mind that exact numbers and perfect certainty as to the list are likely impossible. War is messy, and at best, we get approximations of the carnage.


To be frank, when I saw word 'Mauser', I thought for a while you're talking about the pistol. I think EdgarJPublius' point about civilian deaths is valid, but how widespread the Smith and Wesson has been in Europe and parts of Africa and Asia that used to be under control of European colonial powers' armies? After all, 'the handgun of choice' for civilian killings is often the one that's 'left around' after the wars are over. Also, after the war, that weapon could also be a rifle.

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Re: Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator of the AK rifle series, die

Postby addams » Wed Dec 25, 2013 3:38 am UTC

EdgarJPublius wrote:I'm not so sure about that. How many Atomic bombs feature prominently on national flags? Fat Man isn't exactly an international symbol of revolution.

Really?
What is a Symbol of Revolution?
The Mushroom Cloud is pretty.

This is the 21st century.
Flags can be made with great materials.

The Mushroom Cloud done in metallic lame' fabric.
That would be pretty. There has never been a more Beautiful Bomb.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WwlNPhn64TA

Do you want to compare the machine Mikhail Kalashnikov designed?
Compare it to the machines that came before it?

Compare and contrast. It would make a nice little essay done by You.
Links with photos of the two machines. Photos and diagrams of the two machines.

What were the major improvements?
Weight. Weight was one of the most important changes.

Every ounce counts when you have to carry that stupid thing.
Every ounce counts when you have to carry ammo.

Reliable. Under harsh conditions that gun stayed reliable.
How? I don't know. The scopes were idiot proof. (shrug)

You write the essay. Make it information dense.
Compare and contrast and get back to us.

There should be three to five points that make Mikhail Kalashnikov's
design superior to what was available before.
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Re: Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator of the AK rifle series, die

Postby gmalivuk » Wed Dec 25, 2013 7:46 pm UTC

I just watched this super slow-motion video of an AK-47 being fired underwater, which I think is appropriate for this thread.
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Re: Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator of the AK rifle series, die

Postby Izawwlgood » Wed Dec 25, 2013 10:09 pm UTC

Just as a question, does anyone know what he thought of the prolific use of his rifle? I mean, mission accomplished, he made a sturdy as fuck gun that operates in some of the shittiest conditions imaginable, and is extremely simple and cheap to manufacture, but I'd have to wonder how he felt about it.

A friend of mine designs missiles, and had some interesting thoughts on what his designs were used for.

EDIT: Googled it:
7. It is believed that AK-47s have caused more deaths than artillery fire, airstrikes and rocket attacks combined. An estimated quarter of a million people are gunned down by bullets from Kalashnikovs every year.

8. But Mikhail Kalashnikov himself never experienced self-reproach about the blood spilled with the help of his invention as he created AK-47 for protection. “I sleep well. It’s the politicians, who are to blame for failing to come to an agreement and resorting to violence,” he said in 2007.
... with gigantic melancholies and gigantic mirth, to tread the jeweled thrones of the Earth under his sandalled feet.

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Re: Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator of the AK rifle series, die

Postby Carnildo » Wed Dec 25, 2013 10:45 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:If we are including war, the AK wins. Deaths in war vastly outstrip the rate of death from crime. Pistols are nearly irrelevant to wartime casualties, and are not primary weapon systems.

The AK series beat pistols, sure, but what about other weapons? Machine guns, especially vehicle-mounted ones, are responsible for a heck of a lot of deaths in combat. I'd like to know how AK-47 derivatives compare to the M2 Browning and the MG-42 family.

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Re: Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator of the AK rifle series, die

Postby addams » Thu Dec 26, 2013 2:11 am UTC

gmalivuk wrote:I just watched this super slow-motion video of an AK-47 being fired underwater, which I think is appropriate for this thread.

That is a Great clip.
Thank you.
I will watch it, again.

That guy's accent bothers me.
Racist? Maybe.
He seemed alright.

I could, maybe, get used to that accent if it talked about that stuff.

Izawwlgood? Your question is a common question, if not a good one.

What do you really want to know?
Or; Are you attempting to make a statement with a question?

May I paraphrase? The man said, "I designed a machine. People use that machine. Politicians and Powerful AssHoles pit people against one another. I wish they would not do that."

That is what I heard him say.
Personally; I wish people would be nicer.

If the people are determined to kill one another.
To use a gun is better for everyone conserned than Hand-to-Hand combat.

I read a few little things about War, one time.
The letters and journal entries that came out of one War
Said, "The Streets ran ankle deep in blood."

That was before guns.
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Some of us see The Gutter.
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Re: Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator of the AK rifle series, die

Postby gmalivuk » Thu Dec 26, 2013 3:43 am UTC

It's a pretty fun channel overall, so there are plenty of other interesting opportunities to get used to his accent.
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Re: Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator of the AK rifle series, die

Postby Tyndmyr » Thu Dec 26, 2013 3:00 pm UTC

yedidyak wrote:Over the history of wars, I would guess typhoid or cold have the highest body count.


Oh, if we count diseases, then yeah, they likely win. Deaths to disease have often outstripped ALL deaths to violence, depending on battle and conditions.

Carnildo wrote:
Tyndmyr wrote:If we are including war, the AK wins. Deaths in war vastly outstrip the rate of death from crime. Pistols are nearly irrelevant to wartime casualties, and are not primary weapon systems.

The AK series beat pistols, sure, but what about other weapons? Machine guns, especially vehicle-mounted ones, are responsible for a heck of a lot of deaths in combat. I'd like to know how AK-47 derivatives compare to the M2 Browning and the MG-42 family.


On an individual basis, crew served weapons are historically generally more lethal than individual rifles. This has somewhat changed currently, as the crew served machine gun has become more of a supression weapon than one used with the intent of a large amount of kills resulting. Still, the battle rifle ends up being produced in such vastly higher quantities that it dwarfs crew served guns. This is especially true of battles in third world countries, where one or both sides may not have access to a great deal of crew served weaponry.

Artillery, if counted, is likely reasonably high in body count, too. On a per-gun basis, it probably wins. Overall totals, still likely not.

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Re: Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator of the AK rifle series, die

Postby sardia » Thu Dec 26, 2013 3:02 pm UTC

Biological warfare body count is cheating. Part of those casualties were from wounds sustained by gunfire.

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Re: Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator of the AK rifle series, die

Postby PolakoVoador » Thu Dec 26, 2013 3:07 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:Just as a question, does anyone know what he thought of the prolific use of his rifle? I mean, mission accomplished, he made a sturdy as fuck gun that operates in some of the shittiest conditions imaginable, and is extremely simple and cheap to manufacture, but I'd have to wonder how he felt about it.

A friend of mine designs missiles, and had some interesting thoughts on what his designs were used for.

EDIT: Googled it:
7. It is believed that AK-47s have caused more deaths than artillery fire, airstrikes and rocket attacks combined. An estimated quarter of a million people are gunned down by bullets from Kalashnikovs every year.

8. But Mikhail Kalashnikov himself never experienced self-reproach about the blood spilled with the help of his invention as he created AK-47 for protection. “I sleep well. It’s the politicians, who are to blame for failing to come to an agreement and resorting to violence,” he said in 2007.


I'll have to search for the quote, but I read in a news site's coverage of his death that he was not exactly happy about the prolific use. If I'm not mistaken, his main objective was to make a weapon to defend Russia from invasion. He'd rather invent something which would not kill people.

EDIT: found it.

Kalashnikov wrote:I'm proud of my invention, but I'm sad that it is used by terrorists ... I would prefer to have invented a machine that people could use and that would help farmers with their work — for example a lawn mower.

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Re: Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator of the AK rifle series, die

Postby addams » Thu Dec 26, 2013 7:09 pm UTC

sardia wrote:Biological warfare body count is cheating. Part of those casualties were from wounds sustained by gunfire.

Biological warfare body count is cheating?
Really?

What is the Game? I forgot.
What are we playing?

War? "All is Fair in Love and War."?
It is strangely fascinating what kills.

Infection. Black powder did something.
I am not an expert. I listened to an expert for about five minutes.
He said, something about Gangrene and Black Powder.

What do you think? Gangrene is gross. Gross gangrene is more gross than that. (yuck)
The history of infection. A picture book, not for Children? Why not? Because!

I went to Nursing School for most of my life.

If it was not some interesting thing it was some required thing.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gangrene
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gangrene#Etymology

What did that guy say about Black Powder Wounds?
I can't remember. The rule is: Get it clean. Keep it clean.
Monitor! and Thank the Gods for digital photography.

It is possible to almost watch an infection spread.
People get hurt doing all kinds of things.
Infection kills people that do not have good nursing care.

I am, sort of, surprised as many live as do.
Most common, everyday, uneducated people are able to provide world class nursing care as a bit of an afterthought, today.

The Nurses of One Hundred Years ago when delivering world class care did not have the luxuries of the common folk today.
Average life expectancy in the United States was 50 years for males and 55 years for females. Tuberculosis, pneumonia, and heart disease were the leading causes of mortality in 1913. - See more at: http://navymedicine.navylive.dodlive.mi ... DF9w7.dpuf


Darned. The Internet knows the weirdest things.
Richard Nixon was born in 1913.
It has been one hundred years.

Dang. It's true.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_Nixon

Are we becoming like the Europeans?
That seems like it happened, yesterday; To me.
It was a hundred years, ago.

Is it a European perspective or a Vampire's perspective?
Who has the Gun?
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.


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