Image Copyright: Jon Heinrich/U.S. Army
By Tom Vanden Brook
Copyright: USA Today
Troops call it the "mad minute," a short period of intense fire.
Three infantry officers — reacting to a USA TODAY story about Pentagon problems counting its bullets — recalled their own mad-minute experiences on the firing range at the end of budget cycles.
They took their troops to the range and had them blow through their remaining ammunition. The exercises achieved two aims: Young soldiers and Marines gained proficiency with their weapons, and the mad minutes ensured that not a single bullet was left over. If too many units had surplus ammunition at the end of the year, the officers said, their brigade or division could be issued fewer bullets the following year.