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Marines battle IED's in Aftganistan…..

They are menace to the troops…

And can inflict a lot of injuries…..

And a psychological toll on troops….

The Army and Marines have spent a lot of time trying to deal with them in Afghanistan….

Here’s a piece on the Marines EOD efforts…..

A U.S. Marine Corps sergeant jumped from a Mine-Resistant Ambush-Protected vehicle last summer to inspect a suspicious clump in the dirt along the side of the highway linking his operating base and the combat outpost the convoy was headed to. He inched his way to the patch of ground with a metal detector. The marine had good reason for caution. Helmand Province is infested with improvised explosive devices (IEDs), found along roadways and footpaths that Marines and Afghan security forces use during dismounted patrols.

To understand how prevalent IEDs have become, one only needed to look at a watch. The 10-mi. drive between posts was taking more than 2 hr.

The sergeant’s countermeasure might not be as useful as expected—camp scuttlebutt after the death of a marine by an IED days earlier claimed the explosive was packed in a rubber cylinder so it could not be detected by metal detectors.

IEDs in Afghanistan have doubled in the last year, USMC Lt. Gen. Michael Oates, director of the Joint Improvised Explosive Device Defeat Organization, told Congress on March 17. According to a Defense Department tally, more than 8,000 IED incidents were reported in Afghanistan in 2009, compared with almost 4,000 in 2008.

Insurgents, moreover, are turning to “low- or non-metallic-content, fertilizer-based explosives, which frustrate detection,” Oates said (DTI April, p. 34).

The effects are potent. According to the Brookings Institution, IEDs were responsible for almost half of the 312 U.S. troop deaths in Afghanistan in 2009. The average has stayed steady this year, with IEDs claiming 39 of the 79 U.S. troops killed as of late March.

“One of the striking things about Afghanistan is the IED threat is particularly brutal,” says Brookings military analyst Michael O’Hanlon. The labyrinth of dirt roads in southern Afghanistan makes planting bombs easy. The agrarian nature of much of Afghan society means ammonium nitrate fertilizer, which cranks up the potency of IEDs, is readily available despite a ban by the Afghan government.

Recent operations in southern Afghanistan have pushed troops into new territory, and insurgents fight back with IEDs, says Dakota Wood, an analyst at the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments of Washington. The use of plastics or fiberglass components “shows an advance in devices that are less detectable,” he adds, and indicates insurgents are learning and adapting……..


May 5, 2010 - Posted by | Government, Media, Men, Military, Other Things, PoliticalDog Calls, Updates, Women | , ,


  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by James Finley. James Finley said: Marines battle IED's in Aftganistan…..: http://wp.me/pAL4p-2GV […]

    Pingback by Tweets that mention Marines battle IED’s in Aftganistan….. « PoliticalDog101.com -- Topsy.com | May 5, 2010 | Reply

  2. I wonder how many of these IED were laid by coalition forces to stop Afghani forces.

    Kinda like a squirrel that forgets where they buried their acorns

    Comment by Timothy Leal | May 6, 2010 | Reply

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