Monday, December 23, 2013

Mikhail Kalashnikov Dead at 94

     From Defense News:

MOSCOW — Mikhail Kalashnikov, the designer of fabled AK-47 automatic rifle, died Monday, the office of the presidency in the Udmurtia region where he worked said. He was 94.
Kalashnikov designed a weapon that became synonymous with killing on a sometimes indiscriminate scale but was seen in the Soviet Union as a national hero and symbol of Moscow’s proud military past.
“He died about one-and-a-half hours ago,” Viktor Chulkov, the spokesman for the Udmurtia leader Alexander Volkov, told AFP.
Lavished with honors including the prestigious Hero of Russia prize for designing the iconic rifle, Kalashnikov has said he had never intended for it to become the preferred weapon in conflicts around the world.
“I created a weapon to defend the fatherland’s borders. It’s not my fault that it was sometimes used where it shouldn’t have been. This is the fault of politicians,” he said during an award ceremony at the Kremlin to mark his 90th birthday.
Read the rest here.

The AK-series has been in pretty much every flare up since Vietnam. It's been used to kill a lot of Americans. But, a man cannot be faulted for defending his country. And to give credit were it is due, the AK is probably the most reliable weapon every produced. RIP Kalishnikov, you earned it.

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