The US Army maintains a long-standing tradition dating as far back as 1775 when the first companies of "riflemen" were formed by the Continental Congress. The branch went on to see notable and extensive combat actions in many of America's commitments including the Revolutionary War, the War of 1812, the Civil War, World War 1, World War 2, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, Grenada, Panama and the Gulf War of 1991. More recently, US Army personnel have been involved as part of the 2001 War in Afghanistan and the 2003 Invasion of Iraq. The branch is regarded as one of the most powerful in the world based on recent combat experiences, current equipment and training doctrine.
Current (as of 2012) weaponry fielded by the US Army includes the M16 assault rifle and the Beretta M9 pistol sidearm. Specialty weapons are also available based on training and expertise and includes various sniper/anti-material rifles, shotguns, machine guns and grenade launchers as well as rocket and anti-tank/anti-aircraft missile launchers and mortars. Notable vehicles currently in service with the US Army include the HMMWV (Humvee) and M1 Abrams Main Battle Tank. The US Army also fields a relatively small stable of aircraft types made up mostly of transport and attack helicopters.