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Cover Story
By Stephan Wilkinson
Conceived as an intermediate rifle for Soviet foot soldiers, the Kalashnikov became the prototype of the modern assault rifle—and the weapon of the century

Why Rome Fell
By Richard A. Gabriel
Internal decay and barbarian invasions laid the empire low

Wellington: The Greatness of the Iron Duke
By Dennis Showalter
Arthur Wellesley blended military prowess and political acumen

Portfolio: Headline Power
Historic events of World War II were really BIG news
By Rick Meyerowitz

England’s Last Invasion
By James Lacey and Williamson Murray
The Normans hit Britain’s beaches in 1066

The General Who Lost America?
By Andrew O’Shaughnessy
General Sir Henry Clinton claimed he was a scapegoat

On the cover: A young Afghan boy poses with an AK assault rifle captured from Soviet troops during their 1979-89 war in Afghanistan. (© Steve McCurry/Magnum Photos)

Chosin Reservoir, Grenada

Margaret Thatcher’s Funeral, Doolittle Raiders Farewell

Weider Reader
Excerpts From Our Sister Publications

Steve Vogel: 1814 on the Chesapeake

By Chuck Lyons
The Other Custer Hero

By Edward G. Lengel
Pershing Makes an Army

What We Learned…
By Thomas B. Allen
From Bennington, 1777

Hand Tool
By Jon Guttman
Zeiss Scherenfernrohr

Power Tool
By Jon Guttman
Webley & Scott Mk VI Revolver

Letter From Military History


Hallowed Ground
By Gary L. Rashba
Route of the Lamed Hei, Israel

War Games

General Disorder
By Rick Meyerowitz
James Wilkinson


The AK-47 is cheap, reliable and able to withstand punishment in the field. It is also inaccurate and lacks the range of better-made assault rifles. Is it overrated or “good enough” to earn the title “Weapon of the Century”?