The Avenger 30mm Cannon
I generally talk about small arms, and small arms accessories. However let’s take a break and check out some extremely heavy firepower– the GAU-8 Avenger cannon.
Since the US Army took an experimental Lewis machinegun up on a canvas and bamboo biplane in 1912, there has been a move to arm aircraft. After those tests in which an officer asked, “Why would anyone want to put a gun on an airplane?” ordnance has gotten bigger and more effective.
The US military spent most of the time period between 1948 and 1989 obsessed with a plain in central Germany known as the Fulda Gap. The Fulda Gap was the most obvious route for a hypothetical Soviet tank attack upon West Germany (and NATO) from Eastern Europe. It was envisioned that thousands of Soviet and Warsaw Pact tanks would swarm into the Fulda. If the US could stop them there, World War III could be won. If not, we’d all be speaking Russian today.
Enter the Avenger.
The rest in my column at Firearms Talk.