re: "Dude, Where's My Pistol?"
"About a year ago, the Marine Corps decided to switch the T/O weapon of most officers and staff NCOs from the M9 pistol to the M4 carbine. (See MarAdmin 378/07.) Accordingly, pistols are beginning to disppear from armories as M4s flow in."
"I'm not sure this is a good idea."
"It's not that I favor the M4 over the 9mm, or vice versa, it's that I want both. The M4, 'though short, is really a long gun; the pistol is the back-up. It's a damn good thing to have when your carbine shits the bed, or runs out of ammo, or you're grappling with your opponent and can't bring the rifle to bear. I want them both. I'd prefer something heavier than the 9mm, but I won't turn it down.
I do realize that the officer's primary weapon is his radio, and his ability to direct his forces, but sometimes the boss needs a rifle. One battalion FAC I interviewed in Iraq about the first battle of Fallujah related how the inital contact in the city was so intense that he couldn't talk on his radios because he was too busy defending himself with his rifle. Nice thing to have when you need it.
Somewhere, somehow there has to be a funding angle to it. I wish HQMC would resolve it and give us back our sidearms. When you need a pistol, you really need it."