The man with the record for the world’s longest confirmed sniper kill has shared the story of the event, claiming that the bullet took 6 seconds to reach its target.
Craig Harrison served with the armed forces in Afghanistan, when British and local troops sought to force the Taliban out of the country’s remote regions.
On one of these missions, the sniper managed to kill two Taliban insurgents from a significant distance, earning himself a record in the process.
Speaking to James English on his ‘Anything Goes’ podcast, Craig confirmed that he holds the record for the longest-range confirmed sniper kill, standing at 2,475 metres (1.53 miles), using a rifle that could only propel bullets over a 1,500-metre distance.
“Not many people know that I was stood up when I took the shot, I wasn’t lying down. I was stood up against a wall,” he said.
“And it took me nine shots to get there in the morning.”
Going into detail about the operation, Craig explained that he and a team were tasked with clearing Taliban forces out of a village.
Providing overwatch, Craig remembered: “I could see all the Taliban in this village. I could see them queuing up, waiting to attack this patrol coming in. And I informed them that ‘you’re going to get hit in a minute’.”
Seeing a glint in the distance, Craig began to shoot at a Taliban insurgent to provide cover for his team.
He continued: “What I did was bracket, where you fire the first shot and you know where it's landed and you just lift the rifle up and you fire again, and fire again. It took me nine shots and I hit the compound wall.”
By shooting at the enemy, the sniper recalled that his team were then able to pass safely into the town.
But after hours of battling, and without any obvious signs of enemy troops, Craig realised that they continued to be peppered with shots from the compound he had taken aim at earlier.
This, he explained, is when he made his long-distance hit.
“I checked, and there were two Taliban up there, and I knew that I had shot there in the morning,” he explained.
“This lasted for about three hours, so I thought, ‘I need to do this, because my men are going to get killed’.
“So I fired my first shot, and it missed, I saw it slash just in front. I saw one guy stand up, and as he stood up, I fired again. And the bullet took six seconds to fly there.”
Pointing to his chest, Craig said: “The guy went down, and I hit him here.
“And then the second guy was still firing. He stood up, I fired my third shot, and as I fired my third shot, I moved my rifle across and fired another shot. So this time I’ve got two bullets in the air at the same time.
“The third one missed and the fourth one hit him. And it hit him in the side.”
Craig was able to confirm the kill and discover where his bullet had hit the Taliban after they went to collect the weapons afterwards, to ensure they didn’t fall into enemy hands.
The sniper acknowledged that due to the huge distances involved, the Taliban likely would have survived if they had been wearing body armour, noting: “We worked out that the bullet slowed down to about 40 miles an hour.”
But, despite the accolade of longest confirmed sniper kill, Craig was modest about his accomplishment.
“I say to this day now that it was a fluke,” he claimed.
“I tried to save 12 guys and get them out of the s***. I didn’t even know the distance that I was firing.”
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