Predator-Inspired Ammo Backpack Cobbled Together By Soldiers In Afghanistan
Monday, 17 October 2011
A group of Iowa National Guard, fresh from a harrowing two-and-a-half-hour firefight in Afghanistan earlier this year, found itself questioning the effectiveness of some of their new equipment. They had been issued M240B light machine guns for support fire, but they found themselves constantly reloading with new 50-round belts, which necessitated a ammo bearer with a bunch of belts at the ready. "The ammunition sacks that came with it made it too cumbersome and heavy to carry over long, dismounted patrols and especially when climbing mountains. Initially, we came up with using 50-round belts and just reloading constantly, which led to lulls of fire and inefficiency," said Staff Sgt Vincent Winkoski. While discussing the shortcomings of their setup (as you might do if your lives depended on it), someone mentioned the movie Predator, in which Jesse Ventura's character had an ammo box for his minigun strapped to his back. They laughed about it, but Winkowski got to thinking, and with a can-do attitude that becomes of a soldier, decided to put something like it together.