The Longest-Range Guns in the US Military Arsenal

Historically, long-range weapons have provided both tactical and strategic advantages in military conflicts. Basically, they can reach out-of-range enemy forces. While ultimately the longest range attacks come from aircraft, drones, naval vessels, and missiles, even small arms have differing ranges, and some have a much longer range than others. (Also see, the bombs and missiles used by the U.S. military.)

To determine the longest range small arms used by the U.S. military, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed a range of sources, including military handbooks, government press releases, and firearms publications pertaining to small arms and light weapons currently used by the U.S. military. All small arms used by the U.S. military are ranked according to their maximum range, based on information from Military Factory, an online database of military vehicles, aircraft, arms and more used by militaries across the world. Data on the type of weapon, caliber, country of origin, and year entered service, also came from Military Factory.

The sniper rifle arguably came into the battlefield during the American Revolution, giving soldiers an incredible tactical advantage. By the Civil War, sharpshooters began to make use of telescopic sights to improve accuracy. These days, sniper rifles have a myriad of modular scopes for any particular situation to gain the most advantage on the battlefield.

The U.S. military uses other small arms capable of doing damage in a variety of ranges – some at even much greater ranges than traditional sniper rifles. (Here is every standard issue U.S. military rifle since the American Revolution.)

Although not all the weapons on this list are meant to be used at great range, each serves a distinct purpose within the military, whether a shotgun or a sniper rifle. Some of these weapons have a maximum range of under 100 feet, while others can be effective at over 4 miles away.  Some of these weapons have been in the service since the World War II era, and some have only been introduced within the last decade.

Here is a list of small arms in the U.S. military with the longest range:

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