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Kalashnikov, Designer of AK-47, Is Dead at 94

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Mikhail Kalashnikov, designer of the most iconic weapon of the 20th century, has died at the age of 94, according to a report from the Associated Press.

He is known primarily for developing the AK-47, an assault rifle that was heavily exported by the Soviet Union. More than 100 million AK-47s have been built since 1947, according to estimates, and various versions of the gun are still widely used by militaries around the world.

The gun has become one of the world’s most ubiquitous weapons, even showing up on Mozambique’s flag. Although other assault rifles have improved on Kalashnikov’s design, the weapon’s reliability (it reportedly rarely jams) and pervasiveness (the weapon is easy to find and thus easy to fix with replacement parts) have kept it on battlefields, including the ongoing conflict in Syria. Read more…

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