The 100,000 1911s slated for the Civilian Marksmanship Program(CMP) have not yet been released, but Cheaper Than Dirt reports something nearly as cool is happening.
Approximately 100,000 Turkish and Philippine M1 Garands have been released to the CMP, and orders are currently being taken.
Former (Lord, I love saying that) President Barack Obama had signed an order releasing the 1911s and Garands to the CMP in theory, but never actually made them available (surprise, surprise), and shooters despaired the guns would never find their way to the U.S.
Worry no more!
The CMP received the Garands over the last month or so. Currently, the CMP is busy prepping the guns for sale. Each of the M1s will have to be cleaned, inspected, potentially repaired or rebuilt, and then test fired. Afterward, the M1 Garands will be sorted and graded, which ultimately determines each rifle’s sale price.
The NRA says the M1s are already being fixed up, and the first shipment of 1911s — which will be sold at a rate of 8-to-10,000 a year — have been delivered to the CMP, as well.
“We’re excited to have the guns,” CMP Chief Operating Officer Mark Johnson told the NRA. “We’ve been working on getting them for several years, and it’s the first shipment of guns we’ve received in quite some time.”
The M1 Garands ― about 86,000 from the Philippines and 13,000 from Turkey ― were loaned to those countries following WWII under the Military Assistance Program (MAP).
According to the NRA, because the rifles technically belong to the U.S. Army, it was up to that organization, not the CMP, to seek repatriation.
However, under the Obama administration, repatriation was unlikely.
During those years CMP worked quietly with the U.S. Army, preparing to eventually receive the repatriated rifles and milsurp pistols. Last week’s receipt of the firearms is the culmination of long effort while adopting a wait-and-see attitude by CMP.
Qualified shooters will be able to purchase the rifles and pistols on a lottery basis, and will have to pass a background check both by the CMP and a the licensed FFL where they pick up their new guns.
There may be more coming, too.
And while the present 107,000 milsurp rifles and pistols are good news for CMP, collectors and competitors, there is more on the horizon. South Korea has approximately 80,000 M1 Garands and about 600,000 M1 Carbines loaned to that country under MAP. South Korea aborted an attempt to sell those loaned firearms to U.S. importers a few years ago. CMP is hopeful that these will also eventually be repatriated and passed on to the American citizen.
The revenue from CMP sales is used to fund operations and programs and to supplement a permanent endowment. For eligibility requirements, check out the CMP website.