Great to hear that real training is being done to maximize pilot's effectiveness, as well. I understand them sticking with an M4 variant shooting 5.56 for logistical reasons. Do you know why a suppressor wasn't included? I would think it would be important help mask one's location. Was the desire for 500m range deemed more important than might be achievable with the shorter barrel that including a suppressor might require? It looks like a 12.5 inch barrel currently--is that right? What do you think about that trade off?
Suppressors are a luxury item they just dont really require. An aircrew's primary concern in this type of situation should be E&E, not enemy engagement. In the event they are compromised to the point that rounds are being exchanged, a suppressor will do nothing to help them. It also is just not something they were able to fit into the kit as they are working with the limited space available in the ejection seat kit. They did throw around the idea of an 8" 300 blackout with a suppressor, but again, the logistical issue of different ammunition coupled with the reduced ballistics just doesnt doesnt make sense, especially when their primary role is not kinetic engagement.