(Original post by yusufu)
If you're not shooting to wound or kill, what's the point of shooting?
To reduce the threat. In a normal situation, for example, you'd aim at the chest, simply because it's the biggest target. A bloke that takes a few rounds to the chest probably won't be too healthy, but even if he's still alive, he's unlikely to carry on trying to make a nuisance of himself.
In other situations, like a suicide bomber, the threat is reduced by putting as many rounds into the head as possible, because it destroys the brain, so he can't twitch and press the button, as he might if you shot him anywhere else, or still be sufficiently alive to press the button. If there were a way of neutralising a suicide bomber any other way, I'm sure that method would be used (The Israelis have some very interesting research). Or a counter terrorist sniper shooting a hostage taker in the head, because he may be wearing body armour, or may be able to shoot a hostage if he is just injured or takes a while to snuff it. The sniper also has the luxury of choosing where he wants to put that round because he usually has time, plus a very accurate weapon, and extensive training. Your average soldier has an average weapon and average accuracy, hence the whole aiming for the biggest part of him. If humans had giant legs and tiny torsos, we'd aim there... It's all about threat reduction and the size of the target.
Shooting to kill and all that hollywood crap is reserved for just that - hollywood.
EDITED TO ADD: And now, back to piracy... I apologise for going off-topic!