|Time to get rid of it?|
Article here: http://www.military.com/daily-news/2014/07/03/army-wants-a-harder-hitting-pistol.html?ESRC=todayinmil.sm
The story is that the Berettas and SIG's are getting old, they fire a round without enough stopping power and so forth. A pistol is of slight importance in the military, unless you happen to be the one armed with it when trouble occurs. It then, doubtless, seems plenty important to you. So I'm all in favor of the military having good pistols.
Personally, I see little wrong with either pistol the forces are using. If effectiveness is the big issue here, perhaps putting a flat nose on the 9mm FMJ bullet would be something to explore. Other ammunition innovations that stay within the letter of the law of the Hague convention could be tried out, as well. A spoon nose profile could be tried, or a bullet balanced strongly rearward to encourage early yawing.
Abandoning the 9mm NATO cartridge would in one way be a bad idea. It is a cartridge in widespread use in many places around the world, making supplies of it easy to come by. That it is so widely used forces a conclusion that a lot of people have found something right with it. As to what that good thing is, I think the 9mm sits right on the balance point between power on the one hand and controllability on the other. It is about as much cartridge as people can handle if they are briefly trained on the pistol.
The article mentions that the troops are having trouble with the Beretta's safety lever, applying it when they do not mean to when racking the slide. That has been a well known thing you need to watch out for since that style of safety appeared in the 1920's. It can hardly be that the Army did not know about it when the Beretta was adopted. It is a train the brain issue, not a mechanical defect. The supposed problem of the too-long trigger reach on the Beretta is easily solved. Just cock the hammer.
Anyway it appears that we are off to the circus with yet another weapon selection program that will generate a lot of entertainment for gun cognoscenti. If I ran the circus the soldiers would get some sort of light DAO trigger, no external safeties to fool with and an improved 9mm bullet. But that's just me. The clustering bureaucrats will see to it that the selection process will produce lots of controversy for gun bloggers to cover. Stay tuned.