Russian Military’s Best Firearms

Russian Military’s Best Firearms

russian army

This post is also available in: heעברית (Hebrew)

Firearms used by the Russian Armed Forces and security services include various models by different manufacturers. Nationalinterest.org enumerates some of the guns that could be considered the best.

The first is the AK-74M which is currently replacing the shorter AKS-74U as the armament for support crew. The rifle is light, reliable, has low recoil and compact with the standard issue folding plastic buttstock.

While by some Western standards it may be considered outdated ergonomically, the AK-74M is one of the best AKs out there, with Russian special operations forces continuing to use the rifle in combat abroad and domestically.

The Glock 17 is currently one of the most popular military and police sidearms worldwide, including with U.S. Army special forces and elite units in the Russian security services. The Russian arms industry produced many guns that copied the Glock’s features, such as the GSh-18, a polymer framed, striker-fired gun with a trigger safety. The Glock appears to be preferred by the most elite units, including the Federal Security Service FSB’s Alpha Antiterror group.

The PKM / PKP Pecheneg: Lighter than most Western 7.62 machine guns, it is still accurate and controllable. It is the more modern version with a different bipod and barrel. The PKP is primarily issued to special forces and more modernized units, while the PKM is still seen in the largest numbers in the army. Both models are constantly being modernized with new stock kits and optics mounts being produced by Russian industry.

H&K MP5 can be found in special police units around the world, and Russia is no exception. MP5s have been used by Federal Security Service units, often fitted with red dot sights and rails to accept foregrips and other accessories.

Recently the MP5 may have been replaced by the PP-19-01 Vityaz-SN 9x19mm submachine gun in Russian service, probably due to the lower cost and similar manual of arms to the regular AK rifle. Despite this, the MP5 is definitely a better gun with regards to shootability, thenationalinterest.org assesses.

The roller-delayed mechanism in the MP5 reduces recoil more than a straight blowback system, making it easier to stay on target. For this reason, the older MP5 continues to outsell the newer H&K UMP9, a straight blowback gun.

SAKO TRG 42 – Due to the Finnish military’s emphasis on accuracy, the Finnish arms industry has always produced accurate guns. As such, their rifles are very popular around the world. The Finnish Sako TRG line is a favorite among a multitude of special units around the world. Even regular contract Russian Army snipers in reconnaissance teams have been spotted with the Sako TRG, although it is more with TsSN FSB anti-terror units.

In addition to their superior characteristics, the TRG rifles were also cheaper than domestic equivalents, though this may have changed in 2018 given the wide adoption of the SV-98 by Russian Airborne Forces.