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The Sten submachine gun is certainly not the most elegant SMG every made. Neither is it the safest, especially in the Mk II configuration I tested for this article. It was, however, the right weapon at the right time. When the Sten went into production, Great Britain was facing possible invasion by the Germans and desperately needed weapons to fight the enemy on the beaches and behind them. British industry and resources were already stretched to the maximum, thus a weapon that could be manufactured cheaply and quickly was needed. The Sten was that weapon.