The term “Improvised Explosive Device”, also known as an IED is the choice of destruction for domestic and international terrorism.
It has killed U.S. military in Iraq and Afghanistan. An IED was also used in the worst domestic terrorist attack in U.S. history in Oklahoma City at the Murrah Federal Building in 1995. Other IEDs have been used domestically on smaller scales over the last several decades.
Warren Lerner is an Air Force combat veteran (Gulf War and Panama). When he decided to pursue his Doctor of Science degree at Capitol College in Laurel, Maryland, he had a thought.
New data released today by Action on Armed Violence shows that civilian deaths and injuries in 2013 from explosive weapons have increased by 15%, up from 2012.
Civilians bore the brunt of bombings worldwide. AOAV recorded 37,809 deaths and injuries in 2013, 82% of whom were civilians. The trend was even worse when these weapons were used in populated areas. There civilians made up a staggering 93% of casualties.
These stark figures mean that civilian casualties from bombings and shelling worldwide have gone up for a second consecutive year.
Are you passionate about mine action or explosive remnants of war? If so, it is time to start writing articles for Issue 18.3 of The Journal of ERW and Mine Action (to be published fall 2014). The submission deadline is 1 July 2014.
This issue will focus on program management, improvised explosive devices, and the Pacific Islands. We are also looking for case studies, research and development articles, and sumbissions documenting work in the field.
Smoke from the controlled detonation of improvised explosive devices rises behind a U.S. Marine Corps mine-resistant, ambush-protected vehicle in Afghanistan. (AFP)
The head of the US military’s counter-IED organization sees the group’s mission possibly expanding despite the physical size of the organization declining in the coming year.
In the coming months, Lt. Gen. John Johnson, director of the Joint Improvised Explosive Device Defeat Organization (JIEDDO), must present his case for institutionalizing the organization, which was borne over the past decade of counterinsurgency-oriented wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.
While he does this, Johnson must reduce his staff from about 3,000 — when he entered the job six months ago — to 1,000 by the end of September.
KABUL (TCA) — Afghanistan’s Ministry of Interior (MoI) has opened its first special school to train police officers on defusing improvised explosive devices (IEDs), the biggest conflict-related threat to civilians in the country, according to UNAMA’s press-release.
“One of the biggest challenges for people and military forces (in Afghanistan) is IEDs,” said the head of the engineering section of the MoI’s IED disposal team, General Mohammahd Anwar Paigham, at the school’s opening ceremony held in the Afghan capital, Kabul, on Wednesday.
According to the latest Protection of Civilians report of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA), the indiscriminate and unlawful use of IEDs by anti-Government elements remains the biggest conflict-related threat to civilians, responsible for 35 per cent of deaths and injuries during the first half of 2013. With 443 civilians killed and 917 injured by IEDs, it was a 34 per cent increase compared to IED-caused casualties recorded during the same period in 2012.
A US Marine runs to safety as an improvised explosive device explodes in Helmand Province, Afghanistan, in 2009. (AFP via Getty Images)
The Pentagon’s counter-IED organization will shrink nearly 90 percent in the coming years from its peak strength in 2010 but expand its missions, according to US Defense Department documents.
In one of his final decisions as deputy defense secretary, Ashton Carter, who left the Pentagon on Wednesday, said the Joint IED Defeat Organization (JIEDDO) should sustain its ability to support US forces in Afghanistan and the evolving counter-IED requirements around the world.
The personnel cuts will come over the next four years, shrinking JIEDDO down to a “base capacity level” of about 400 people in 2017. At its peak in April 2010, the organization had more than 3,900 people.
Giles Duley stepped on an IED while on patrol with American soldiers in February, 2011
War photographer returned to Afghanistan to document plight of wounded locals
Afghanistan 2012 – an exhibition by Giles Duley take place in the House of Commons on Monday 2 September at 12:15pm
Mohammed Hanif is tended to by his grandfather. He was injured after he picked up an unexploded device. Many children in Afghanistan are injured when playing with UXOs (Unexploded Ordnance).
Every agonising detail of the split seconds during which his life was torn apart are seared on the memory of renowned photographer Giles Duley.
The sound of the click made by the pressure plate in the landmine as he stepped on it, the sensation of being thrown through the air by the explosion, the realisation he had lost three of his limbs after being blown up by an improvised explosive devise while covering the Afghanistan war in 2011, are all as clear as if it were yesterday.
But undeterred by his horrific injuries, Giles vowed to return to the war-torn country once he had undergone gruelling rehabilitation to detail the plight of the Afghani people caught up in the conflict.
The SiN-VAPOR sensor is placed in a device to identify chemical compounds. (Photo: U.S. Naval Research Laboratory/Jamie Hartman)
Improvised explosive devices, or IEDs, are homemade bombs that can both injure and kill civilians and service members. For the Department of Defense, one solution to the problem of IEDs is to find them before they explode by detecting the chemicals used in the explosives. Scientists at the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) have developed a technology, using silicon to fabricate a sensor that may revolutionize the way trace chemical detection is conducted.
The sensor, called Silicon Nanowires in a Vertical Array with a Porous Electrode, or SiN-VAPOR, is a small, portable, lightweight, low power, low overhead sensor that NRL researchers hope can be distributed to warfighters in the field and to security personnel at airports across the globe.
SiN-VAPOR is an example of nanotechnology. “Nanoscale is 1x10-9 meters,” explains Dr. Christopher Field, the NRL scientist leading this research. “So, let’s assume that the diameter of a human hair is 100 microns. If you can take the diameter of a human hair, cut it, and look at the cross section area. We can fit a million of our nanowires in the cross section area of a single human hair.”
Dirty Tricks: Disabled Teacup Bomb, a.k.a. “A Bomb for Fools.”
We met today in Baghdad with a few bomb disposal supervisors as part of research for a project in works. After the first talks, our hosts invited us upstairs to a room with some of the local collection. They said each of these items had been an actual IED. We can’t vouch for that. We can say it was an interesting and thought-provoking display. There were several samples of victim-operated IEDs, including a few that looked straight from the pages of the old USG Special Forces manuals from the 1960s, which became part of the foundation of al Qaeda manuals. This booby-trapped tea set, arranged so some of the electrical contacts can be seen, caught our eye. More later. Busy now. Via Instagram.
A Sandia engineer who trained U.S. soldiers to avoid improvised explosive devices (IEDs) has developed a fertilizer that helps plants grow but can’t detonate a bomb. It’s an alternative to ammonium nitrate, an agricultural staple that is also the raw ingredient in most of the IEDs in Afghanistan.
Sandia has decided not to patent or license the formula, but to make it freely available in hopes of saving lives.
Ammonium nitrate fertilizer is illegal in Afghanistan but legal in neighboring Pakistan, where a quarter of the gross domestic product and half the workforce depend on agriculture. When mixed with a fuel such as diesel, ammonium nitrate is highly explosive. It was used in about 65 percent of the 16,300 homemade bombs in Afghanistan in 2012, according to government reports. There were 9,300 IED events in the country in 2009.