continued from earlier post...
A marksman, markswoman, or marksperson is a person who is skilled in precision, or a sharpshooter shooting, using projectile weapons, such as with a rifle but most commonly with a designated marksman rifle and / or a sniper rifle, to shoot at long range targets. The main difference between a marksman and a normal sniper is that a marksman is usually considered an organic part of a team of soldiers, whereas regular snipers tend to work alone or with other snipers.
A sniper is a highly trained marksman who operates alone or in pair who maintain close visual contact with the enemy and engages targets from concealed positions or physical distances exceeding the detection capabilities of the enemy personnel, without being detected. These sniper teams operate independently, with little combat asset support from their parent units. Snipers typically have highly selective and specialized training and use high-precision rifles and optics, and often have sophisticated communication assets to feed valuable combat information back to their units.
In addition to marksmanship, military snipers are trained in camouflage, field craft, infiltration, reconnaissance and observation. Snipers are especially effective when deployed within the terrain of urban warfare, or jungle warfare. [source: wiki]
The verb "to snipe" originated in the 1770s among soldiers in British India where a hunter skilled enough to kill the elusive snipe was dubbed a "sniper". The term sniper was first attested in 1824 in the sense of the word "sharpshooter".
Different countries use different military doctrines regarding snipers in military units, settings, and tactics. Generally, a sniper's primary function in warfare is to provide detailed reconnaissance from a concealed position and, if necessary, to reduce the enemy's fighting ability by striking at high value targets (especially officers, communication and other personnel) and in the process pinning down and demoralizing the enemy.
Military snipers from the US, UK, and other countries that adopt their military doctrine are typically deployed in two-man sniper teams consisting of a shooter and spotter. A common practice is for a shooter and a spotter to take turns in order to avoid eye fatigue.
In most recent combat operations occurring in large densely populated towns such as Fallujah, Iraq, two teams would be deployed together to increase their security and effectiveness in an urban environment. A sniper team would be armed with their long range weapon, and a shorter ranged weapon to engage and protect the team should enemies come in close contact.
Typical sniper missions include reconnaissance and surveillance, target marking for air-strikes, counter-sniper, killing enemy commanders, selecting targets of opportunity, and even destruction of military equipment, which tend to require use of rifles in the larger calibers such as the .50 BMG, like the Barrett M82, McMillan Tac-50, and Denel NTW-20.
Snipers have increasingly been demonstrated as being useful by US and UK forces in the recent Iraq campaign in a fire support role to cover the movement of infantry, especially in urban areas.
In this toy blog post, I decided to pose the Very Hot 1/6 scale Mercenary (sand version) set which I had reviewed earlier HERE with a kitbashed PMC (Private Military Contractor) 12-inch figure I had put together some time ago (check out my 2008 post HERE for more pictures).
The 1/6 scale head sculpt with molded beard was produced and released by Hot Toys as a PMC which was part of their now non-existent 12-inch military figures series. The specially modified M4 rifle was also produced by Hot Toys and sold as a part of their 1/6 scale modern weapons series.
The good thing about kitbashing a PMC (Private Military Contractor) or mercenary is that since they do not belong to any particular army, there isn't any rule regarding what they can or cannot wear. So almost anything goes :) You can mix and match and put parts of gear together the way you like it.
The only thing to note is that the pouches which hold the spare magazines must match the weapon they are carrying. They can't be possibly loading AK47 / AK74 magazines into a M4 SOPMOD rifle right? And they won't be carrying rifles of different calibre because that would mean double the weight in terms of ammunition (one set for each weapon). Even between mercenaries, it would make more logistical sense to be carrying similar calibre weapons so that they can support one another with ammunition and such.