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Subject: Flamethrowers - Banned by some convention? Or just considered too damn dangerous for the operator?
ArtyEngineer    12/2/2008 10:48:25 PM
As an early Christmas present too myself I just picked up Call of Duty - World at War. It is absolutely awesome!!!! Dont have the word to describe the joy of working through jap infested bunkers and trenches with a flamethrower!!!!! But it made me wonder when they were officially withdrawn from service and what the actual reasoning at time of withdrawl was.
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ArtyEngineer    Hope this works   12/2/2008 10:55:12 PM,0,0,0" height="392" width="480" classid="clsid:d27cdb6e-ae6d-11cf-96b8-444553540000">" / />" swliveconnect="true" name="gtembed" align="center" allowscriptaccess="sameDomain" allowfullscreen="true" quality="high" pluginspage="" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="480" height="392">
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WarNerd       12/5/2008 4:12:33 AM
Flamethrowers are probably one of the most terrifying weapons ever used on the battlefield, but the man portable versions have a lot of problems.
-  limited range, typically less than 50m for man portable weapons with jellied gasoline, but only 10-20m with straight gasoline (more typical in WWII).
-  limited ammunition, typically 10 seconds or less of fuel.
-  very heavy and bulky.  If you go prone the tanks stick up, and if penetrated dowse  the operator with fuel.
-  obvious and fragile.  A flamethrower was a prime target for snipers, and everyone else in general. 
A bullet in any of the tanks could put the flamethrower out of action, but an exploding fireball was unlikely unless the fuel tank was ruptured while the weapon was being fired.
Given the problems and limitations, man portable flamethrowers were probably used because there just no better alternatives available.  After the WWII longer range alternatives were developed, such as the American M202A1 and the German HAFLA, and flamethrowers were phased out as ineffective on the modern battlefield.  The latest generation of flame weapons are the ones that use thermobaric warheads.
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LB    M202   12/6/2008 1:07:50 PM
It might still be in service but I doubt it's been used as it had reliability problems.  Not sure if ROK still uses it?
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