Rifle designer Kalashnikov dies


Associated Press

MOSCOW

Mikhail Kalashnikov started out wanting to make farm equipment, but the harvest he reaped was one of blood as the designer of the AK-47 assault rifle, the world’s most-popular firearm.

The carnage of World War II, when Nazi Germany overran much of the Soviet Union, altered his course and made his name as well-known for bloodshed as Smith, Wesson and Colt.

Kalashnikov died Monday at age 94 in Izhevsk, the capital of the Udmurtia republic where he lived, said Viktor Chulkov, a spokesman for the republic’s president.

Kaslashnikov often said he felt personally untroubled by his contribution to bloodshed.

“I sleep well. It’s the politicians who are to blame for failing to come to an agreement and resorting to violence,” he told The Associated Press in 2007.

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