Ironic twist for iconic firearm: Obama sanctions spur ‘Made in USA’ AK-47s

The Obama Administration’s economic sanctions designed to punish Russia for sponsoring upheaval in Ukraine and elsewhere in Eastern Europe has produced an ironic twist on an iconic firearm: The first solely American-licensed, manufactured and distributed AK-47.

The Russian Weapons Company (RWC) Group, a gun-maker based in Tullytown, Pa., began manufacturing American-made Kalashnikov AK-47s in January because trade sanctions levied in July 2014 against Russia had stopped the flow of the world’s most popular semi-auto into the U.S.

RWC Group announced on June 30 that it had officially started selling its Kalashnikov USA line of ‘Russian Heritage/American Innovation’-branded semi-automatic rifles and shotguns at Acusport, Big Rock Sports, Bill Hicks and other retailers.

RWC rocked SHOT Show 2015 with its January disclosure that it had started making its own AK-47s because trade sanctions prevented it from importing them from Kalashnikov Concern, the Russian manufacturer of AK-47s, Izmash and Saiga rifles and shotguns.

President Barack Obama imposed those trade sanctions in July 2014 in response to Russia President Vladimir Putin’s war in Ukraine. Those trade sanctions prohibit American companies from communicating with specific Russian businesses, including Kalashnikov Concern. RWC had signed a January 2014 agreement with Kalashnikov Concern to import 200,000 AK-47s rifles, but only received about half of its order before Obama’s July 2014 sanctions ceased importation.

In a January blog in The Shooter’s Log, Suzanne Wiley noted that a Moscow Times article quoted a representative for Kalashnikov Concern, who said the company did not object to RWC independently manufacturing the new Kalashnikov USA, but is not “working with them.”

In the same Moscow Times article, Wiley reports, Mikhail Kalashnikov’s daughter, Elena, president of the Kalashnikov Foundation, said that RWC is violating the rights of Kalashnikov Concern. “Our weapons should remain ours,” she told the Moscow Times, according to Wiley.

“Perhaps Elena isn’t aware that a handful of U.S. companies already produce 100-percent made in the USA AK-47s, along with China, Afghanistan, Hungary, Poland, India, and Pakistan — just to name a few,” Wiley writes.

True enough, writes Hunter Stuart in a July 2014 article in Huffington Post Business. Despite RWC’s hoopla, a handful of U.S. companies already make AK-47-style firearms, including Atlantic Arms Manufacturing, a subsidiary of Atlantic Arms, and I.O., Inc., a small manufacturer in Florida that says it sells its 100 percent American-made AK-47-style guns for $400 to $600.

Russian-made firearms, including the AK-47, make up only a small part of the U.S. gun market, according to Stuart. The U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives documents only about 200,000 Russian guns were imported to the U.S. in 2012. BATFE says in 2012, U.S. gun makers produced more than 8.5 million guns, not including guns produced for the military, and imported around 4.8 million more from other countries, Stuart notes.

For more, go to:

American-made Kalashnikovs go on sale – decades after the gun was first manufactured to bring down the West

The first American-made Kalashnikovs are now for sale


Elena Kalashnikova “Bewildered” By American-Made AKs

Century Arms USA-Made Model 39: The AK-47 Redefined

AK-47s: Soon to be made in USA

American-made AK-47? RWC looks for production location

Bloomberg puppet inadvertently dangles the unintentional good idea

U.S. Rep. David Cicilline (D-RI) on June 30 announced he has sponsored three gun control measures to “address gun violence,” including a proposal to make the first day of summer the day parents should walk around and ask friends and neighbors if there are unlocked guns in their homes prior to allowing their children to visit.

Yes, Rep. Cicilline says, let’s make the first day of summer National ASK (Asking Saves Kids) Day. Of course, gun safety experts and gun-owning parents suggest you ask this question more often than once a year. But, maybe, National ASK Day could actually be the proverbial inadvertent good idea from an unlikely source: If folks go out-and-about to meet and greet their neighbors, that itself will “address gun violence.” So, ask away.

The former mayor of Providence, R.I., Cicilline is a founding member of former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s Mayors fanatically anti-Constitution Against Illegal Guns organization. He would not tell the AP if his proposed measures would have prevented mass shootings, such as the one in Charleston, S.C., on June 17.

“While I understand that some in Congress would prefer not to have this debate right now, it is critical that we find the political will to finally address these urgent concerns,” he told the AP.

According to the AP, the legislation filed by Cicilline includes:

—The Fire Sale Loophole Closing Act, H.R. 2916, which would restrict the ability of those with a Federal Firearms License to convert their inventory of guns on hand when they close shop into personal firearms. Cicilline says it would prevent the guns from being sold in private without background checks. It was introduced with 35 co-sponsors, all Democrats, and has been referred to the House Committee on the Judiciary.

—The End Purchase of Firearms by Dangerous Individuals Act, H.R. 2917, which would mandate all 50 states and all applicable territories submit mental health data to the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The data, which would include anyone committed to an institution or who mentioned a threat of violence to a mental health worker, would be added to the database of prohibited possessors from which the FBI uses to clear those applying for background checks in pending gun transfers. Currently, each state submits mental health information based on its own guidelines. The measure has two Democratic co-sponsors and has been sent to the Energy and Commerce. Committee.

—House Concurrent Res. 59, to designate June 21 each year as National ASK (Asking Saves Kids) Day which encourages parents to ask others if there is an unlocked gun in the home prior to allowing their children to visit. The logic behind the date selection, the first day of summer, is the season in which kids spend more time visiting friends and relatives homes. ASK Day was first established by the American Academy of Pediatrics in 2000. It has four co-sponsors and has been assigned to the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.

For more, go to:

Charleston shooting prompts 3 new gun control proposals

Cicilline presents gun-control bills to Providence gathering

The ASK (Asking Saves Kids) Campaign

HCR 102

RI Congressman introduces trio of gun bills

Cicilline promotes National ASK Day to prevent gun violence

Maine poised to be seventh state to ‘allow’ concealed carry without permit

The Maine Republican-led Senate on June 30 voted 23-12 to send a bill to Republican Gov. Paul LePage that would “allow” people to carry concealed handguns without a permit, becoming the seventh U.S. state to do so.

According to the Associated Press, LePage initially said he wouldn’t sign the bill because it didn’t “allow” military members and veterans who are under the age of 21 to be free from the permit requirement. But lawmakers added an amendment to address the governor’s concerns.

If LePage signs the bill, Maine will join Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Kansas, Vermont and Wyoming in “allowing” residents to carry a concealed firearm without a permit. Like these states, Maine already “allows” open carry of a handgun without a permit.

The AP reported that some law enforcement officials and gun control groups fiercely opposed the bill. They claimed the permit process was necessary to keep weapons out of the hands of criminals.

For more, go to:

Maine Senate OKs concealed carry without a permit

Vermont: SC shooting won’t stir fast change in state’s gun laws

New Jersey: Christie orders review of state gun laws in executive order

Kansas: New gun law cause concerns for Reno County Sheriff’s Office

Guns in Michigan gun-free zones? Sparks fly in debate over new bill

Delaware: Gun control group backs Krueger-Braneky in 161st District

Misfire: The gun lobby miscalculates on a sneaky bill

Another day, another poll confirming most Americans spurn gun control

There are more polls than actual poles in America these days, making it easy for ideologues of all dots-and-stripes to cite surveys that support their contentions. So, why not seize the moment when another day-another poll confirms – in a statistical snapshot, a sound bite in time – just what you’ve been saying all along? Gun control is a Vox populi yawner.

As Michael Warren reports in The Weekly Standard on June 30, a new-new poll from Suffolk University and USA Today finds the majority of Americans do not want to debate gun control in the 2016 presidential election. According to the poll of 1,000 adults, 52 percent say they would not like gun control to be a “significant subject” during the election, with 43 percent saying they would, Warren writes.

The survey was conducted from June 25 to June 29, just over a week after the June 17 attack in Charleston by alleged gunman Dylann Roof. According to Suffolk University, in addition to not wanting to hear about gun control in 2016, a majority of Americans do not believe increasing gun control via expanded background checks will curb mass violence.

The poll found 56 percent said more restrictive gun laws would not prevent mass shootings in the U.S., while 76 percent said more access to guns would also not prevent mass shootings in the U.S., the findings don’t necessarily mean there is “more desire to tighten” gun laws.

The Suffolk University/USA Today poll’s results were similar to a December 2014 PEW Research Poll that showed the majority of Americans wanted protection of gun rights rather than passage of more gun control. According to the PEW Poll, 52 percent of Americans were concerned with protecting gun rights while 46 percent were concerned with passing more gun control.

“It is interesting to note that the Suffolk University/USA Today survey not only backs up PEW’s findings but shows a widening chasm between gun control and gun rights, with the majority of Americans not even interested in seeing candidates spend a lot time talking about gun control in 2016,” writes AWR Hawkins on on July 1.

For more, go to:

Poll: Most Americans Aren’t Interested in Gun Control


Poll: More Americans Open To Restricting Gun Laws Than Loosening To Reduce Shootings