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fiendishrabbit t1_j134ygh wrote

Because the US have been fighting all their battles in the middle east where a bigger bullet has certain advantages, mainly that it has a better effect against heavy bodyarmor and that it can penetrate double-brick walls (which is a really common feature in the middle-east and afghanistan.

Neither of those two were a factor back in the days when the US decided to go for 7.62 instead of a more suitable mid-weight cartridge. The only good argument for the 7.62 back then was that it was also a suitable cartridge for general purpose machineguns, so using the same caliber in all small arms simplified logistics.


greennitit t1_j13upru wrote

Also terrain in the Middle East tends to be flat and tree-less leading to longer engagement distances.


akodo1 t1_j20jln4 wrote

And there countyside is different. Sparce vegetation on flat terrain or scrub brush on mountains means a lot more long shot possiblity (as well as long range machinegunnery) that was experienced in Vietnam or the conflicts in Latin America