The video: The Pentagon has sent soldiers in Afghanistan a new weapon that fires shells with microchips that can be programmed to explode at a precise spot, allowing soldiers to kill enemy hiding behind rocks, buildings, or other cover. The shoulder-fired, "smart" grenade launcher has been in development for years (below, watch a CNN report that aired before the weapon was deployed). The weapon, called the XM25 Counter Defilade Target Engagement System, can fire 25mm air-bursting shells up to 2,300 feet, far beyond the range of most rifles. The Army has called the rifle-sized grenade launcher a potential "game-changer" in its counterinsurgency operations in Afghanistan. "With this weapon system, we take away cover from [enemies] forever," Lt. Col. Christopher Lehner told "The only thing we can see [enemies] being able to do is run away."
The reaction: "We are truly living in a science-fiction warfare age," says blogger Marc R. at This "pinpointed firepower" could be just the thing we need to "reduce civilian casualties in Afghanistan." The XM25 will make it even "more suicidal" than it is now for the Taliban to engage U.S. soldiers directly, says Ed Morrissey at Hot Air. This is "a great weapon and a gamechanger, but it may not be a war-ender." Watch the report: