Define “embarrassment” for me


September 25, 2017 by AK

Here’s a good write-up of the monumental gun snafu in Moscow:

It’s a blunder so bad it makes you look twice: On the new sculpture dedicated to Russia’s most famous small arms designer, there is an unintentional homage to a weapon of Russia’s hated adversaries during the Great Patriotic War.

The author, Nathaniel F, seems to like the statue of Mikhail Kalashnikov by Salavat Scherbakov; I don’t, but that’s beside the point. Behind this statue, unveiled with proper pomp last Tuesday in downtown Moscow, there is a panel depicting Kalashnikov’s designs:

While the majority of the panel is filled with models of Kalashnikov’s inventions and derivatives, nestled in the backdrop of the representation of the AKS-74U compact assault rifle is a slab depicting an exploded view of the MKb42(H), a World War II German assault rifle which helped serve as the inspiration for the program Kalashnikov’s rifle was designed to satisfy.

Scherbakov is a repeat offender: in 2014, his team placed a Mauser rifle where a Mosin rifle was supposed to be. The same disregard for historical detail, then as now. The sculptor’s assistants are too lazy to ask the experts and don’t know how to sift through a google search for reliable results. This attitude – “who cares anyway?” – isn’t rare but is still incomprehensible to me.

The error is almost too good to be true, given the abundance of internet conspiracy theories regarding the relationship between the AK-47 and the Sturmgewehr weapon family…

More about this in part 2.


  1. dyingearth says:

    I think Scherbakov just likes the German WWII guns look. Historical accuracy isn’t a top priority anyway, but to get this much wrong is stupid.

    • AK says:

      “I think Scherbakov just likes the German WWII guns look.” Who doesn’t? It didn’t even occur to him to say the German guns were trophy weapons,

  2. […] Kalashnikov’s contribution to the development of AK-47, relative to the role of other Soviet Russian designers, will probably remain an open question in […]

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