Neptuns Dunklen Söhnen, with blasters by FN

The Austrian Army this week released a behind-the-scenes look at a little-known frogman unit in the landlocked country, complete with a cameo by FN.

In terms of size, it is thought that the country only maintains about 50 such divers for use in rivers and lakes in the Alpine country. While Austria hasn’t had a coastline since 1918, the nation does have 40 large lakes including Lake Constance on its Western border with Switzerland and Germany, as well as the immense Danube River system which runs through the country. With that, Austria’s combat swimmers (Kampfschwimmers) are highly trained, with its members taking three years to earn their badge.

Besides their Glock 17 pistols– Austria was the first country to adopt the now-iconic handgun as the P80– and Steyr AUG (StG 77) bullpup rifles, the Kampfschwimmer also field the FN P90 in 5.7 NATO.

Austria’s commandos adopted the P90 about 15 years ago, replacing the Steyr MPi 69 sub-gun as a close-in weapon, and augmenting the B&T TMP.

More in my column at

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