Air Force deploys new sidearm, replacing the M9
The Air Force security units have begun wielding the new M18, this new modular handgun is set to become the new standard among several Air Force divisions, replacing the classic M9 Beretta, which has been the US Armed Force’s sidearm choice for the last 30 years.
This decision stems from the Reconstitute Defender Initiative, which has the purpose of modernizing weapon systems and increase war fighter efficiency, the M18 is expected to become the new main sidearm in several branches.
“Once all Security Forces units have been supplied the new weapon, we will supply special warfare Airmen, Guardian Angel/PJ communities, OSI and other high-level users,” said Master Sgt. Shaun Ferguson, AFSFC Small Arms and Light Weapons Requirements Program Manager. “Aircrew communities and other installation personnel will be issued the handgun as well based on requirements.”
And according to the Air Force IMSC website, the M18 will also be ported by the Air Force Office of Special Investigations and used in the Military Working Dog training.
The M18 is an improvement over the M9 in several areas, including the ergonomics department, boasting a customizable grip that can accommodate to small, medium or big hands, the M18 is also more reliable and durable than it’s predecessor, it’s wight distribution is quite balanced, which aids the shooter when acquiring his next target, and is able to fire blanks while used in training, a quality that coupled with it’s durability and reliability, makes the M18 a lot more cost-effective than the M9.
“The M18 is a leap forward in the right direction for modernizing such a critical piece of personal defense and feels great in the hand. It reinforces the muscle memory instilled through consistent shooting,” said Master Sgt. Casey Ouellette, “It’s more accurate and, with a great set of night sights and with their high profile, follow-up shots have become easier than ever before.”
The Air Force expects the entirety of it’s security forces to have full authorization of wielding the M18 by 2020, after which they will proceed to focus on the rest of the Air Force.