IN ISRAEL’S DEFENSE

Q. I recently purchased one of the Century Arms Golani rifles based on a Galil parts kit. I am very happy with it but wondered why the Israelis stopped using the Galil in favor of the M-16.

- Jimmy Farrens, Owensboro, KY

Galil rifle

An Estonian soldier armed with a Galil rifle, which appears to mount an Aimpoint sight. Estonia uses an array of Galils, including the 7.62x51mm sniper version. (Photo: Eesti Kaitsevägi)

A. I, too, think highly of the Golani and the Galil. I have a semi-auto Galil imported before the Clinton Assault Weapon Ban that I have been shooting for years. I also tested the Golani and was quite pleased with it. One of the features I like a lot is the combination of the AK-type safety and the sliding safety, which may be easily operated by the thumb of the shooting hand.

 

To answer your question, however, I believe there may have been a combination of factors that dictated the replacement of the Galil. First, Israel has a lot of female soldiers who, I understand, found the Galil heavy and who had a lot of trouble due to the hand strength necessary to deploy or fold the stock. I also understand that the United States pushed for U.S. military aid to be used to purchase U.S. products such as the M4A3 and M-16A2. Israel is now producing the Tavor bullpup rifle, as well, which will see service with some Israeli units.

- Leroy Thompson

 

NOTE: This is excerpted from Gun World’s column Ask the Experts.

 

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