Gun Review: Inland M1A1 Paratrooper Carbine in .30 Carbine
By Terril James Herbert
The author takes aim with the new Inland Paratrooper Carbine. (Photo: Terril Herbert)
During World War II, Inland — then a division of General Motors — stepped up to support the American war effort by manufacturing one of the first true personal defense weapons ever fielded, the M1 Carbine.
The M1 Carbine was meant to be a light rifle used by troops whose main duties weren’t fighting on the front lines. Support troops like truck drivers, mortar crews, and the like were relatively safe in previous wars but World War II was no ordinary conflict. German tactical doctrine at the time emphasized breaking through and cutting off the enemy while avoiding strong points. The fearsome Fallschirmjager was also a threat, jumping out of perfectly good airplanes to seize key positions — and target personnel far behind enemy lines.
It was clear that in the coming conflict, we needed a weapon with greater firepower and range than what a M1911 45 caliber pistol could offer. But these troops couldn’t lug around a 9-pound M1 Garand. The 5-pound M1 Carbine firing an intermediate power 30-caliber cartridge seemed well suited for the job.
In all, Inland produced over 2.5 million of them, nearly half of the total