The cause for the shortage was cited as our armed forces' unending need for small arms ammunition. I'd heard last year about Army and Marine snipers having to unlink 7.62 machine gun belts to feed their rifles, because the Lake City match ammo for which those rifles are designed had long dried up. But apparently it goes beyond this. In 2001, the armed forces asked for 426 million rounds of small arms ammo. In 2006, the figure had climbed to 1.65 billion rounds.