Saturday afternoon, my wife and I were enjoying Mexican food and margaritas in the lovely San Diego sunshine. We ate at tables on the sidewalk, under thatched umbrellas, people watching. Young men walked by in packs of fours and fives, wearing polo shirts and uniformly short haircuts, and it began to occur to me that with the Pacific Fleet and the 1st Marine Division nearby, San Diego was very much a military town.

One young man walked past in a white and red horizontal-striped rugby shirt, and I overheard, “Yeah, grenade launcher. With like, six barrels!” I suddenly realized that I was picking up a conversation I would never hear in San Francisco. I stopped chewing my food, straining to hear anything else as he walked away, but there was nothing else.

I mentioned it to James, who suggested this gun, the MM-1.

MM-1 grenade launcher. Via World Guns

Well, it turned out that the Marine Corps public relations photo feed would answer the question for us. Just yesterday, the  following pictures showed up on the Department of Defense’s DVDIS web site. It turns out the mysterious grenade launcher is none other than the M32A1, and it was demoed to the Western Army Infantry Regiment the day after I left.

CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. Sgt. Ryan Visket, an Urban Leaders Course instructor, gives a class on the M32A1 Multi-Shot Grenade Launcher to Japanese soldiers. Photo by Cpl. Chad Pulliam.

And this one:

CAMP PENDLETON, Calif.€“ Japanese soldiers observe as Sgt. Ryan Visket, an Urban Leaders Course instructor, fires the M32A1 Multi-Shot Grenade Launcher at targets here Feb. 16th. Photo by Cpl. Chad Pulliam.

Here’s all you need to know about the M32A1.

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A contributor and editor at the blog War Is Boring, Kyle Mizokami started Japan Security Watch in 2010 to further understand Japan's defenses and security policy.
Kyle Mizokami has 578 post(s) on Japan Security Watch