The Marine Corps has rolled out a stealthier service pistol — with a classic spy name — for its cadre of special agents and those who work on the president’s helicopter squadron.
According to an announcement from Marine Corps Systems Command, the service is fielding the Glock 19M, which the Corps calls the M007, in lieu of the M9 service pistol, for this select group of personnel.
The Glock 19M, which features a smaller, more compact body and ergonomic improvements including a textured frame and a flared magazine well for easy reloading, was adopted by the FBI as its service pistol in 2016.
Marine Corps Times reported last week that about 50 Marines will head to Afghanistan with the weapon as part of Task Force Southwest, on its next rotational deployment to Helmand province.
Fielding of the M19 to members of the Marine Corps Criminal Investigation Division began earlier this year, according to the Systems Command announcement.
“The M007 has a smaller frame and is easier to conceal, making it a natural selection to meet the Marine Corps’ conceal carry weapon requirement,” Gunnery Sgt. Brian Nelson, Individual Weapons project officer at Marine Corps Systems Command, said in a statement.
Members of the Quantico, Virginia-based Marine Helicopter Squadron One are also carrying the sleek weapon. This squadron includes the VH-60 Nighthawks that carry the president of the United States, as well as MV-22 Ospreys that transport staff and VIPs around the Washington, D.C., region.
The Corps collaborated with the FBI to get the gun into the hands of Marines and civilian CID agents faster.
“The fielding of the M007 is an example of how we can streamline the acquisition process by reviewing another service or agency’s test data to see if it fits the Marine Corps’ need,” said Lt. Col. Paul Gillikin, Infantry Weapons team lead at Marine Corps Systems Command.
“We received the initial request for a new concealed carry weapon system in April 2016,” he said. “By collaborating with the FBI, we were able to procure, establish sustainability plans and start fielding the weapon to Marines by May 2017.”