A reader tipped me off to this amendment to the solicitation for the OICW Increment 1, which the XM8 and other assault rifle systems were competing for. The important bits:
The purpose of this Amendment is to CANCEL Solicitation W15QKN-05-R-0449, OICW Increment One.
This action has been taken in order for the Army to reevaluate its priorites for small caliber weapons, and to incorporate emerging requirements identified during Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom. The Government will also incorporate studies looking into current capability gaps during said reevaluation.
This isn’t unexpected, given the backsliding over the past year or so after it appeared that the XM8 might be on fast track. If the “said reevaluation” includes a long hard look at the 5.56, this will probably all be worth it.
Looks like the Marines and SOCOM, who adopted the M16A4 and the FN-SCAR (respectively) despite initial interest in the XM8, made good calls.
MO will hopefully have more on this soon.