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Top 10 Most Powerful Military Weapons In The Modern Age

XM25 Smart Grenade Launcher #1/10

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Image from the U.S. Army.

Image from the U.S. Army.

Kicking off the list at number 10 is the XM25 Smart Grenade Launcher. Just by looking at this compact launcher it is clear even to those unfamiliar with weaponry that this is no joke. This particular grenade launcher also known as the Punisher and Individual Semiautomatic Air Burst System. What that basically means is, this thing packs a big punch.

The XM25 CDTE fires 25 mm grenades that are set to explode in mid-air at or near the target. A laser rangefinder in the weapon is used to determine the distance to the target. This air burst grenade launcher was initially fielded to soldiers serving in the War in Afghanistan and is planned to officially enter service in late 2015.

About Ryan Scott

  • Nathan Otto

    Typical, this countdown begins with another American knock off. The South Africans have had the Denel NTW-20 anti-materiel rifle in service since 1998.

    • Joe Citizen

      Look at the Bouys anti tank rifle from ww2.

      • Nathan Otto

        Exactly my point, if you look throughout the modern age there are at least 5 rifles I can think of that are made outside of the US that had a greater impact on global conflict than the above mentioned rifle. The Elephant Gun being one of them of course.

        • garyoptica

          The spud gun being the most sensible 😉

        • Bartholomew Bakr

          Or a punt gun for when you ABsolutely, POSitively, MUST kill EVERY duck on the pond.

      • neighbour1

        Hey Joe! My father was part of the sniper team evaluating the Boys and he said it was the most horrible fire-arm he’d ever used, well that’s what he wrote in his report after he’d recovered from injuries sustained after firing a total of five rounds! It was, as you’re aware, dropped pretty damn quick!

    • bigdawgman

      Different concepts entirely. American is basically an air-burst anti-personnel weapon. SA is more for materials, and doesn’t have the air-burst ability. That being said, this list is ridiculous. A damn mortar is more powerful than either one. Bad heading.

    • Docta Batzu

      heckler und koch . its a german weapon

  • Joe Citizen

    .50= 12.7 mm. 20mm = .78 cal Reach out and touch someone.

  • 3scoreand10

    I have yet to see any weapon that surpasses the long bow

    • Luong the Viet

      Englishlong bow, ehh? I heard you guys butt-raped your Frenchie pals pretty hard with it. Hee-hee-hee :-)

      • Nathan Otto

        The problem with the list is it features all American weapons of which there are too many experimental weapons that haven’t been deployed and also some weapons that have never been used, to my knowledge, like Chimera. The list should feature the most powerful modern weapons in the world. My list:

        10.) Eurofighter
        9.) G-6 Rhino
        8.) AH-2 Rooivalk attack helicopter/ Apache AH64-D
        7.) Leopard 2A7
        6.) A-10 Warthog
        5.) AK 47 family/ M-2 Browning
        4.) BrahMos missile
        3.) Nimitz class Aircraft carriers
        2.) Seawolf class submarine
        1.) B-53 Nuclear Bomb

        • Luong the Viet

          THANK YOU, Nathan!!!

          Hey, which tank is better in terms of firepower, mobility, reliability and communications? The German Leopard or the American Abrams tanks or others?

          • Nathan Otto

            I’d stick with the Leopard as my first choice tank, then I’d consider the Challenger II, then the brand new Armata and only after that the Abrams. The thing about the Leopard is that it’s a Diesel powered machine with an extraordinarily good gun and defensive capability. Whereas the Abrams requires far too much logistical support to be effective in any other armed force around the world. Another notable mention would be the awesome Merkava IV!!

          • Luong the Viet

            Thank you!

            What do you think of the recent Vietnamese purchase of the six Russian Kilo submarines? How does the Kilo compare to the Seawolf sub?

        • Giacomino Sandarsiero

          what about the f-22 raptor? it would eat any eurofighter. Or are you counting by actual deployment?

          • Nathan Otto

            Well there is a debate after the recent Red Flag exercise as to how effective the F-22 actually is. In long range encounters the F-22 had the upper hand but all close encounters were dominated by the Eurofighter with its agility and off bore targeting. But yes, in this case I am only looking at fully deployed weapons systems with at least some form of battle experience.

          • https://www.facebook.com/david.lloydjones.391 David Lloyd-Jones

            Aerial dogfights have had exactly zero effect on any war since Korea, and are of no importance today.

            Air superiority is certainly an important part of peacekeeping in some places, e.g. at the 38th parallel in Korea — but the B-52 and the A-10 Warthog are the two planes that do the most in that department.

            -dlj.

      • https://www.facebook.com/david.lloydjones.391 David Lloyd-Jones

        Um, he may have had Hastings in mind…

        -dlj.

  • Dorel_C

    And a lot of good did it do , in Afghanistan …USA lost all the wars , starting with Vietnam !

    • kejjer

      Actually–The Americans losing in Vietnam is a misconception.
      The Americans signed a peace treaty which the north broke two years after the Americans official left. But don’t blame yourself–after all-I thought that same thing until I went and read about it myself.
      Seems Nixon had a peace deal with north Vietnam, and After the US pulled out the North broke the deal and The congress blocked the war funds from renewing the bombing campaign over north Vietnam.

      You can argue the US did not win but –but they did not lose.
      They merely refused to go to the aid of the south as promised.

      • OpInfo

        Woot? The Vietnamese broke their promise? Something the U.S. would NEVER do! How dare they??

        • kejjer

          Really-it’s been 3 months and now you reply.
          Actually the US broke their promise to the South Vietnamese–which I pointed out in my post.

          • https://www.facebook.com/david.lloydjones.391 David Lloyd-Jones

            This discussion is all ree-eally silly. The Vietnam War was won and lost at Dien Bien Phu in 1954.

            That victory for the Vietnamese over their European invaders was confirmed when the FLN walked all over Bien Hua air base in 1962. This led Kennedy into increasing US ground troop strength in Vietnam from 700+ to 10,500. This had no effect on the outcome of the war, but postponed peace for 15 years, and caused a couple of million unnecessary deaths.

            Kennedy’s vanity and insecurity are among the most lethal human failings of the entire 20th century.

            -dlj.

          • Tony Vasic

            yea!

          • ontologix

            As long as JFK was president the number of US combat soldiers was relatiely small (less than 15,000). Then Texas primary school teacher LB Johnson took over, and the escalation towards 500,000 US troops began. BTW, LBJ also supported Israel´s nuclear armament.

          • https://www.facebook.com/david.lloydjones.391 David Lloyd-Jones

            Nameless Onty,

            Quite right, but not terribly relevant. LBJ was stuck with all JFK’s wonderful brains so called, and the stupid, mendacious, “commitment” they had all made.

            -dlj.

      • Tony Vasic

        yea peace treaty…comeon… they were forced to sign it because the lost. Otherwise that would have never happend. As we know and the US has already confirmed they lost the Vietnam War really badly. And fled like Pussys in the End.

        • kejjer

          Why not read up on it yourself instead of trying to display your ignorance to the world.

          • Tony Vasic

            You are the only one Ignorant and Dumb, tryin to bullshit over historical Facts. USA lost the Vietnam War very badly, the whole World knows it – accept You!

          • kejjer

            Your an idiot–go read up on it. I doubt you will learn anything–but it is worth a try.

            The document began with the statement that “the United States and all other countries respect the independence, sovereignty, unity, and territorial integrity of Vietnam as recognized by the 1954 Geneva Agreements on Vietnam”. The inclusion of this provision was a victory for the communist side of the negotiations by allowing that the war was not a foreign aggression against South Vietnam. The main military and political provisions of the agreement were:
            PARIS PEACE ACCORDS
            Beginning on 27 January 1973 at midnight, Greenwich Mean Time—in Saigon time, 08:00 on 28 January—there would be an in-place ceasefire. North and South Vietnamese forces were to hold their locations. They were permitted to resupply military materials to the extent necessary to replace items consumed in the course of the truce.
            Once the ceasefire is in effect, U.S. troops (along with other non-Vietnamese soldiers) would begin to withdraw, with withdrawal to be complete within sixty days. Simultaneously, U.S. prisoners of war would be released and allowed to return home. The parties to the agreement agreed to assist in repatriating the remains of the dead.
            There would be negotiations between the two South Vietnamese parties—Saigon and the Vietcong—towards a political settlement that would allow the South Vietnamese people to “decide themselves the political future of South Viet-Nam through genuinely free and democratic general elections under international supervision.”
            Reunification of Vietnam was to be “carried out step by step through peaceful means”.

            The North Invaded the south–April 1975.

          • ontologix

            Let´s settle this dispute: the US won the Vietnam War, commanded by John Rambo, and Hitler won WW2.

          • bunny2bad

            The USA had to sign this so called peace treaty because they never had any experience or training to fight guerrilla warfare, they were trained to shoot at a soldier in a uniform, to move forward and hold captured ground, no matter how you state it the USA lost the war to a people determined to defend their right to choose the destiny of their country.

          • kejjer

            The USA withdrew as per the Agreement.
            The North withdrew as per the agreement.
            The South then started beating the crap out of the VC.
            The North Invaded two years later, The South begged for US intervention.
            The Democrats said NO–The South collapsed.

            The people of the South did not choose their destiny.
            They were invaded and defeated by the North.

          • David Grant

            We would never have made it back to help in time as the south collapsed so quickly.

          • David Grant

            We failed to defeat an indigenous movement and left as we never should have gone in OR equipped and ferried the French back to Indochina. Everyone, including us and the Vietnamese would have been better off if we had left Ho Chi Minh in charge in 1945.

          • nikondvr

            You people are so damned pathetic. You know absolutely nothing about what you are talking about as usual. The USA did not lose a single major battle in Viet Nam. The only battle we lost was the battle for the support of the American people in the US itself. That was lost by a news media which was anti-war and lied to the American people to get them to turn against it. Lost a war to a people determined to choose their own destiny? You’re a communist right? Did the south Vietnamese want communism? Hell no. Were the Russians and the Chinese providing arms and personnel to aid the North Vietnamese? Hell yes. You history revisionists can go fuck yourselves.

          • David Grant

            Lost badly? We left and no one could stop us from leaving. We weren’t driven out, we just got tired of being there.

      • Ron Arnett

        Define victory.

        For over fifty years after Viet Nam, every country on the Asian continent built their military to defend themselves against a large military attack by American ground forces. Said strategy enabled the respective countries to accomplish a number of things that were of benefit to them (suppress their own population etc.) but were in no way a threat to the U.S. homeland. This allowed America to focus its strategy on other parts of the world. Whether that redirection opportunity was managed well is irrelevant. Asia felt it had no strategic options. America had limitless choices available.

        It is only now that Asian countries are directing their attention to a direct military challenge to America and its compelling interest.

        Personally, I will give up a picture of Patton riding on his jeep to receive conspicuous submission if I can get a half century of continent wide, overwhelming strategic military advantage for my core purposes.

        But it is true that America quit sacrificing its troops to get North Vietnam to say it was sorry. If that is what you mean by victory then yes it was a defeat. Unlike …say Iraq…where they got Sadaam to feel sorry for messing with America, even if he didn’t actually ever say it before they hanged him.

        I will take the strategic results of the Viet Nam war _defeat_ over the Iraq war _victory_ anytime.

        • kejjer

          Well you could give it 50 years after all the Arab spring still has some possibilities. if in 50 years all the middle-east is a thriving democratic union like the ECC that would be a success.

          • Ron Arnett

            But that is the whole point.

            Assuming your possible revitalized Middle East came about, would that be a victory for the U.S? Since the start of the Iraq war, the middle east has become much more dangerous for America. The end of combat operations hasn’t improved anything and possibly made things worse. A thriving state based on a E.U. type of arrangement would certainly be good for the locals if such a thing could ever happen. But that doesn’t mean it would be a good thing for America.

            After Nam, America could fly and sail anywhere it wanted around the continent of Asia, in international jurisdiction, without the slightest care. What’s more, America decided what constituted international. As long as the U.S. avoided putting tens of thousands of their ground troops at risk, they had nothing to worry about. That lasted for half a century.

            That is what a victory for America looks like. A strong Untied States of All the Countries That Want to See America Destroyed located in the Middle East is not a victory for the U.S. It would be a defeat. In fact, it would likely be a tragic defeat for America.

          • kejjer

            Well–democratic countries don’t really wage war against other democratic countries. The reason is simple –it cost money and there is no profit for industries outside of war and even so the government uses it so you don’t really help your economy–plus a devastated country can’t buy things so you can’t trade with it.
            So the odds of democratic countries trying to hope that a country that trades with them collapses in not really something to look forward to.

          • Ron Arnett

            Your definition of democracy is a country that has the concerns that you mention. Italy, Germany, Austria, Poland, Belgium etc. were all democracies at the beginning of the second world war.

            The policies that all the warring countries followed had all been voted on in free elections and at the outset had massive support among their populations.

            The international trade that you refer to was one of the causes of the popular support of the war in Germany, not an obstacle to its acceptance.

            If the population votes the Muslim Brotherhood into office, with its campaign promise of …one man, one vote, one time….are they exercising their democratic right? Do you think their supporters are concerned at all with international trade when marking their ballot?

            Anyway, my point was that the so called defeat for America in Viet Nam provided a continent wide comfort zone for the Americans. Their so called victories in Afghanistan, Libya and Iraq have produced a region wide, large scale threat to its interests. As you point out, it is quite reasonable to believe that elevated threat may continue for another fifty years.

            So we are back to my original question. If you believe Viet Nam was a defeat, define defeat.

          • kejjer

            I said that Vietnam was on a Defeat for the USA. Or more correctly the US signed a peace treaty with north vietnam with the south still being democratic. The north broke the treaty two years later and the USA refused to honor their agreement to come to the aid of the South..

            And I did not suggest that the threat would continue for another 50 years.
            I said that in 50 years it is possible that the destablization of the middle-east at present may turn out to be a plus due to removal of dictators such as Saddam and Khadafi.

            italy and germany might have been democracies before the outset of WWII german legislative branch had given all its authority to the Chancellor –Hitler. And Mussolini became the dictator of Italy in 1924

          • David Grant

            South Vietnam was NEVER democratic. It was ruled by strongmen and generals until after we left that it was run by the Vietnamese version of communists. Diem was a Catholic who upheld the French possessions. Everyone else was a corrupt general ending in Thieu whose competence was limited to thievery.

          • bunny2bad

            Running with your tail between your legs yelping, dumping helicopter into the sea.

          • Ron Arnett

            The helicopters were Vietnamese helicopters. The American exit was accomplished with the cooperation of the North Vietnamese who had no interest in fighting the Americans while they were withdrawing.

            By your definition, victory is only what looks good on television not what actually fulfills the American strategic interest.

            Every country in Asia saw how easy it was for America to completely devastate whatever country they wanted to. And then just leave when they got tired of it. All those countries immediately pursued the one defensive strategy that very much suited America’s interests.

            Not only was it a victory, it was a victory that was sustained for fifty years.

        • David Grant

          Not true at all. As soon as the US left the smaller states of SE Asia turned to face their natural enemy — China. The whole TPP is an effort to bind the US and SE Asian countries together and exclude China.

  • Marc Dumon

    “Modern Age” ???

  • IAntipodean

    Interesting that they rate a grenade launcher as more powerful than a Fuel-Air-Explosion, otherwise known as a thermobaric weapon. An FAE is capable of a level of destructive power similar to a small nuclear warhead, due to the creation of a vacuum at the point of detonation.

  • Riucario

    Let me correct that titel for you “Ryan Scott”:
    Top 10 Most AMERICAN Weapons In AMERICA..

  • Dan Sheppard

    These air burst weapons are nasty business, most targets that are not instantly killed end up with severe trauma to the brain and body and suffer until death. Very messy.

  • raybellanger

    They need this for what????

  • VBottom

    The BIG POWERFUL ONE is the one we are not using. It falls out of the belly of an airplane.and makes a big ass boom. Ever since Sept 1945, we have not used one as yet. So why do we build them if we can’t use them?

    • David Grant

      So that anyone else who builds them won’t use them.

  • ed

    Too many uneducated Liberals here.

  • James Maxwell

    I’ve seen this weapon system demonstrated and tested on TV and it appears to be
    a nice weapon but rather useless for combat troops. First you need to dedicate
    one or more troops to handle this weapon only which remove them from carrying
    their normal weapon and ammo. It is more of a specialty weapon that is “nice”
    for the Politically Correct idiots but totally useless in a combat situation. The weapon
    is heavy and cumbersome based upon the one I saw demonstrated on the TV show
    and would not be practical in a combat situation where you need the maximum
    number of weapon to remove a enemy. From my opinion it might be a good
    weapon if it cold be deployed as a grenade launcher like the old “Bloop Tube” from the Vietnam era or slung unde the combat rifle we currently use.

  • ObiRynDenobi

    All of which will be available to Vinnie the Village Idiot on supermarket shelves this Xmas, courtesy of our friends at Smith & Wesson and the NRA!