[Lone Sentry: German N C 50 Smoke Bomb, WWII Tactical and Technical Trends]
  [Lone Sentry: Photographs, Documents and Research on World War II]
Home Page | Site Map | What's New | Intel Articles by Subject

"German Views on Sniping" from Tactical and Technical Trends

The following U.S. military report on German sniping during WWII was originally published in Tactical and Technical Trends, No. 29, July 15, 1943.

[DISCLAIMER: The following text is taken from the U.S. War Department publication Tactical and Technical Trends. As with all wartime intelligence information, data may be incomplete or inaccurate. No attempt has been made to update or correct the text. Any views or opinions expressed do not necessarily represent those of the website.]


A German source reports the following notes dealing with snipers and the use of rifles with telescopic sights.

*          *          *

(1) Rifles with telescopic sights must be given to the best marksmen irrespective of rank. This should be looked upon as an honor, and changes should be avoided as far as possible;

(2) Continuous fire should be kept up when on the defensive in order to harass the enemy;

(3) During the attack the sniper should concentrate on the particularly dangerous targets and flanking movements. He should be situated some distance away from his squad and so be used for observation. Combination with mortar and rifle grenades is particularly effective, as the enemy can then be sniped at when he has been forced out from his cover.

When considering the telescopic sight it must be realized that the greater the magnification, the smaller the field of vision. A telescopic sight with wide field of vision and high magnification is not available for general service because of its size and its sensitivity. Further experiments in this respect are, however, being carried out. A telescopic sight of the sporting type is not suitable for military purposes and cannot be manufactured within a short period in sufficient quantities for issue in large numbers. The intention is to issue as many serviceable telescopic sights as possible, and not to develop just a few high-grade optical instruments.

The present telescopic sight has a low magnification but has been confirmed by experimental units as practical and rugged. When properly handled, it is effective in the field.

Sights must be tested before issue and, if necessary, corrected. This is nearly always the case when the sights have been transported for long periods.

For good results a fork rest is sometimes advisable. The range may have to be determined by using tracer; the actual sniping should be done from another position as the tracer will have given away the original position.

It is intended to issue one telescopic sight to each company and platoon HQ, and to each rifle squad. A special sniper's badge is under consideration.

Comment: This is evidence of increased German interest in sniping on a large scale. It is known that the Germans have been much impressed by Russian sniping methods.


[Back] Back to Articles by Subject | Intel Bulletin by Issue | T&TT by Issue | Home Page

Web LoneSentry.com