On the heels of the horrific shooting spree at a Connecticut elementary school, an international team of researchers has come up with a list of the best guns for men and women.
The researchers are from Germany, France, Italy and Canada.
They compiled the list with data from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the UN Office on Drugs and Crime.
The study is the result of a joint collaboration between the German-based Federal Institute for Risk Assessment and the International Institute for Strategic Studies.
The authors of the study, who were not able to speak on the record, said the researchers focused on five key areas: weapon characteristics, calibre, magazine capacity and capacity for extended-range fire.
They said the aim was to help improve the understanding of the types of weapons and their use in the world.
While the research was conducted at the German Institute for Science and Technology, the team did not want to reveal their names.
“We didn’t want to disclose too much information because we wanted to avoid bias,” said Dr Jan Töngeman, one of the lead researchers and a senior fellow at the Institute for Security Studies, an think tank in Berlin.
The experts analysed data from six different countries: Canada, Germany, Italy, Sweden and the United Kingdom.
“This is an effort to improve the knowledge about the weapon types and their performance and to reduce the risks to civilians,” Dr Tönemann told AFP.
The research team used data from more than 100 studies conducted in the US, the UK and Australia.
In Canada, they looked at gun owners and gun owners’ opinions on the effectiveness of various weapons.
“A gun that fires only when the trigger is depressed is less effective than a gun that doesn’t have a high rate of fire,” the researchers said.
The researchers also looked at a range of characteristics, including the size and weight of the gun, whether it was equipped with a scope and the type of ammunition.
“In this respect, it was clear that the guns of the three most popular types of firearms were the most effective for the purposes of protecting civilians,” they said.
A total of 17 studies, ranging from 20 to 200 pages, were published in the prestigious scientific journal PLoS ONE in the past five years.
The gun experts found that the US military’s M-16 rifle and the Glock 17 pistol are the two most popular weapons in terms of calibre and capacity.
The US military had an average of 3.7 guns per person per year in 2014, while the Glock 18 handgun had an estimated capacity of 4.6 rounds per magazine.
However, the gun experts said that the military also had a surplus of some 10 million M-17 and M-20 assault rifles, which were not included in the study.
A German study published in 2012 found that, on average, each of the 20 most popular guns in the military had a capacity of about 1.5 rounds per round.
However the US government has acknowledged that the M-14, the military’s standard assault rifle, has a capacity only about half of that of the M16.
“The military does not have enough rifles to carry out large-scale combat operations,” a Pentagon spokesman told AFP on Tuesday.
The report also found that military personnel are less likely to buy the latest models of rifles or pistols because they were developed for use in war zones.
“They are used primarily in small numbers by special operations forces and intelligence officers,” the study said.- © AFP, 2017