\" \" Initially designed to kill enemy combatants on a battlefield, the AR-15 combat/assault rifle has had a long and controversial history. Tarick Foteh/Getty ImagesThe AR-15 rifle is, without a doubt, one of the more prolific and controversial firearms in U.S. history. Throughout its lifetime of military service it would inevitably see action in conflicts from World War II to modern day. The Garand rifle is still in use by ceremonial units within the U.S. military, particularly the U.S. Marine Corps Silent Drill Platoon. A few years after the AR-15 was adopted by the military, Colt released a semi-automatic-only AR-15 rifle for commercial purchase.