While randomly surfing youtube, this video popped up in my suggested video feed called U.S. Marines Integrates New Gear and Weapon Systems | Sea Dragon 2025 After watching the video of some Marine combat elements undergoing some range time, and some live fire team assaults etc I started to notice a couple things... A lot of Marines using the new Heckler and Koch M27 IAR and a lot of suppressors. And these Marines didn't seem to be some sort of special operations type of unit. Real quick on the HK M27 IAR, it's a gas piston AR15 type rifle that is capable of full auto fire but is far more suited to select fire than the M4 carbine and far more accurate than either the M249 SAW or the 20" barreled M16A4. Several years ago it was adopted by the USMC to replace small numbers of the M249 SAW for use in urban combat where the bulky SAW was not well suited to running and gunning with a marine combat squad or fire team inside house to house/hall way to hallway fighting. Well documented in Iraq. The M27 which uses standard M16 magazines (and they were/are still working on implementing either a more reliable drum mag or quad stack magazine like the surefire 60 rounder at the time) the marines in combat found that short bursts from the highly accurate M27 was just as effective as longer bursts from the full auto primarily belt fed M249 in suppressing and engaging enemies. However the HK M27 is also capable of such a great deal of accuracy it can also act as Designated Marksman Rifle with a magnified optic. Essentially the M27 is smaller than the M16 (16.5" barrel) and more reliable, capable of sustained full auto fire more like a belt fed and is accurate enough to fulfill a DMR role.. I had made the prediction a few years ago that I wouldn't be surprised if the USMC tried to just toss the M16 and this was a back door way of them trying to outfit every marine with an M27 in the future. So I started doing some research on Sea Dragon 2025. https://www.mca-marines.org/gazette/2017/03/sea-dragon-2025-small-unit-leaders-thoughts Essentially it's the combined suggested improvements list to the USMC's infantry doctrine as it concerns the down and dirty Marine infantry squad from all the lessons learned from Iraq and Afghanistan and how to proceed into the future. In short some of the biggest things to take away.... -They want to increase the standard 13 man infantry squad to 15 marines. -three 4 marine fire teams... one assault fire team, one support fire team, one security fire team and one 3 marine command element. -They got rid of the SAW in the automatic rifleman role where appropriate (in urban warfare) and replaced it with the M27 configured as such, -They got rid of the assistant automatic rifleman and also gave him another M27... basically every marine in a fireteam has an M27.... -They added in several secondary weapons including LAW rockets, Carl Gustov recoiless rifles, and several 40mm grenade launchers to more members of the fireteams/squad. -Totally upgraded the comms systems for the entire squad and command element. -The only marines still using M4's are the command elements in the support role. it is recommended that the new M27 should be the new standard Marine infantry rifle and the M4A1 should be relegated to a support weapon only. -Command elements marines who will be trained with linking up with combat drones directly for intelligence. -The addition of precision guided munitions available at the squad level vs the platoon level. -Fire team members who will be trained with UGV's (unmanned ground vehicles) aka small unarmed and armed combat robots... apparently the Russian infantry is doing this now so we are trying to as well. -The implementation of out fitting every marine with a rifle suppressor. Interestingly enough one of the primary reasons for this recommendation was (other than combat related reasons such as increased communication and firing position concealment) was to decrease VA costs and medical injuries of tinnitus and hearing loss after the fact. Apparently so far only one marine unit has been testing this new type of concept but so far it's really been working out well. The idea is to be able to make the marine infantry force stronger and more adaptable to fight asymmetric warfare. It will be interesting to see how much of these recommendations make it to full adaptation.