Often credited as the catalyst for the entire weapons class known the assault rifle, the STG 44 was one of the first compact guns to allow soldiers carrying it controllable automatic fire. It was designed and produced in Germany, for use in the Second World War, and saw action along the Eastern Front. However, it arrived too late in the conflict, and made little impact on the Nazis’ eventual defeat.
While in use, however, it was still highly effective. Soldiers who carried the STG 44 could target enemies at much longer ranges than they could have previously, while still being just as efficient when fighting up close. Firing at a rate of close to 600 rounds per minute, the gun was also extremely reliable in adverse weather conditions, such as low temperatures.
The STG 44 was ideal for combating Soviet troops armed with sub-machine guns. It had a longer range, greater accuracy and could be used for both fully and semi-automatic fire. For the time period, this weapon offered anyone carrying it the best firepower of any other handheld gun in the battlefield.
In the end, of course, this weapon did not turn the tide of war in Germany’s favor. Shortly after it appeared on the Eastern Front, the Allies defeated Hitler’s forces and the Second World War came to an end. However, to this day, the legacy of the STG 44 is still essential in understanding the history of the modern assault rifle. Countries around the world began producing similar designs, and many modern firearms can be traced back to Germany’s efficient, reliable and highly maneuverable STG 44.
In this video, viewers can see the gun in action, along with a full technical rundown of the weapon and its historical context. The YouTube channel – hickock45 – posts a wide range of content, covering a variety of both historical and contemporary firearms. As an essential piece of history, the STG 45 certainly deserved its own video.