“I am proud of my weapon but I am sad that terrorists use it… I wish I had invented a machine which people could use, which could do good.” – Mikhail Kalashnikov

The death of Mikhail Kalashnikov, I think, brings a number of questions to mind. One could say that the man had simply improved upon an existing invention/system — or that if he wasn’t there, then there would have been someone else to “lead the way” (toward the invention of the Kalashnikov/AK-47). I don’t think that there is any logic to these positions, however, I must say at all. And so therefore, I will state my claims clearly and tell the reader why this is the case below.

Can we presume that there’s a more destructive weapon than a nuclear bomb? If so by that reasoning Oppenheimer, who regretted creating the bomb, was thinking irrationally. But as of yet, there hasn’t been the advent of a more destructive weapon. And so thusly, IMHO Oppenheimer was entirely correct then, in his regret of working on that bomb! And moreover, even if a weapon could — one day — emerge to surpass the destructive power of the nuclear bomb, that does not bring back the 150,000 souls who died in Hiroshima as well as the 75,000 who died in Nagasaki (those figures not including the concomitant radiation deaths that existed in the wake/aftermath of those bombs).

Additionally the world has been littered with Kalashnikovs, and a definite case can be made that they are; indeed, a catalyst for struggles that otherwise wouldn’t have existed at all, or — at least — that would not have risen to such an exceedingly violent level! Another aspect of the Kalashnikov, is that I believe it is one of the most; if not the most, used weapon by guerrillas and other unprofessional (as well as semi-professional) forces around the world. And this aspect to the Kalashnikov has kind of a double-edged sword facet to it, I’d say. Whilst in battles it has made the “little guy” a more serious threat to an empire or significant military power, it is certainly questionable if groups that it has given a “fighting chance” to may have only had non-violent Gandhian-type means/methods without the existence of this gun! Another possibility, in such cases, is that violent resistance movements would have been stifled sooner, and so therefore less deaths would have been incurred if they had not, at all, had the weapon: the Kalashnikov/AK-47.

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