Force Reconnaissance Platoon| Pistols | 31st MEU
Reconnaissance Marines with the 31st MEU's Force Reconnaissance Platoon fire their .
45 pistols, having transitioned from their M4a1 carbines, during a live fire exercise aboard USS Essex, 2010.
Over the years, Force Recon operators have used variants of the Colt 1911 as a secondary/backup weapon.
These include the M45 MEU(SOC) and, more recently, the M45 Close Quarter Battle Pistol (CQBP).
While other USMC units adopted the 9mm M9/M9a1 as the standard sidearm, the elite Force Recon elected to keep their .
45 ACP pistols, opting for stopping power over magazine capacity.
Force Recon Platoons carry out deep reconnaissance and direct action missions for the Command Element of their assigned Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU).