Heres the deal, the facts of any printed doctrine aside, the situation will always dictate what happens in the field or in combat (and yes I am a combat vet and have put the principles to work in Iraq). The point of the smaller 5.56 round isnt to require the enemy you just shot to be carried of the battlefield by two of his buddies, thus taking 3 out of the fight. The point is to shoot to kill, but if you wound him then when his buddy comes out to help him I can shoot him too (and his buddy after him). They really do come out to help each other, just like we do, its human nature to want to help out your friend. That being said, the lack of stopping power is why the military was, and may still be, considering upgrading to the 6.8mm. It would bridge the gap between the 5.56 and 7.62 almost perfectly.
Also, just about every police vehicle will have a rifle or shotgun in it. I would bank on them using .223 in the rifle and 12 guage in the shotguns. So, if the end of the world gets here while i'm still around, i'll be chilling with my model 700 SPS Tactical in .223, Mossberg 500 12 guage, and Glock 23 with a spare barrel that will step down the .40 to a 9mm. And some MRE's ofcourse, to last long enough to make it through the inital shock and aww. Then its into the hills of northern Virginia. But thats just me, good luck to us all in that event.
Geez seeing ALOT of goofy stuff... Very simple why the miltary went to .223 from the Korean War .308 Its 2 reasons: it weights exactly HALF so the soldier could carry double the ammo. 2 with the terrain the fight would be in, long range would not be nexxessary. Now with Afghanistan they realize that the .308 woulld be the better for after a few hundred yards ,there is just no ppop left to the .223. So simply the .223 is a better pick in urban warfare getting out of town,but when you want to put some distance between you and the enemy, the .308. Alas .308 and nato 7.62x51 has the same problem as the 5.56/,223 I had afriend have 7.62 SA jam loading a .308 hunting rifle. I have an AR-10 with match barrel (eagle arms..armalites BYObranch) wiht match and .308 the differnce you get in accuracy is countered by keeping your arms clean. If I didnt clean after shooting I could well be defenseless the next day. Military arms have some "slop' on purpose. Your not always going to be in a situation to clean, but you lose accuracy. The other thing to consider is hard/soft targets (military/civilian). If you might be holding off NWO/Un troops you will want .308, but .223 is suffient enough to get you through a pile of mexicans on your way to base
My bug out setup is a.45 Kimber onmysideand AR10 on my back. a good knockdown round to through the fiends, and out of thier range swing around the rifle. When I travel its my ar-15 carbine.light and quick and fits easy behind the truck seat
The US military switched because they believed because of weight issues it would give the grunt in the field adequate fire power and more ammo. Old style, heavy 308, new school, 223. 308 is more powerful and larger bullet that will inflict more damage. Both can be bought relative cheaply because they are used in militarys all over the world, thus creating a need for lots of governments buying ammo. So lots of both calibers are cheaper than a 22.250, 270, 30.06 etc. All that said, I have one tactical DPMS 308, two Weatherby 308 bolt action, one tactical DPMS 223, and a Ruger mini 14 in 223. I believe you should always have a minimum of two weapons in any gauge that you keep, if one breaks you aren't left out in the cold. I have many other weapons but those address your questions. Hope this helps.
21yrs, 3 combat tours, from 82nd to 4/2 STRYKERS. REALITY CHECK: .223 will kill just as good as a .308, and a .22 will kill just as good as a 5.56. I own them I shoot them. It depends on load, distance, and what you are shooting at. Loaded guns shot at people KILL! Find what works for you, train with it, and adapt your skills to your environment. Use the right weapon for the right job, and know what weapons will do what jobs, and you will be O.K. The bigger the rounds the heavier the load/weight. So keep in mind you have to hump it, so always be mindful of that.
Know the difference between an ambush, a patrol, a recon, an attack, react to contact, RETREAT,... etc. Most Importantly know the Battle Drill called S.U.R.V.I.V.A.L. It's great to know ballistics and all that good stuff, however, there is only one thing that is going to truly save you, that's your head, so don't lose it, and it will all work out just fine...
.223/5.56 for CQB, or something like the M4 Benelli 12 guage. .308 for engaging at distances over 100 yards. Why pick just one? I've got both, and I really hope I never have to hump long distances with my DPMS .308 LD. It's got a heavy bull barrel, and 20 round mags that are *heavy* when loaded. I prefer the lighter AR/M4/M16 for long patrols...by far. Squaddies carrying something like a .308 usually having to share their load. It's pretty standard, since the "reach out and touch someone" weapons add greatly to force security. I don't mind carrying a couple of mags for the designated marksman :)