Saturday, November 7, 2009
A Primer on the Enemy
The photo above is a cache of arms caught by our forces in Iraq this week.
They are sophisticated, freshly made weapons made in Iran.
Iran has been shipping these weapons into Iraq since Saddam Hussein left power because of our invasion.
IED is an abbreviation for Improvised Explosive Device.
When we first went into Iraq, we encountered IED's.
These were homemade bombs. Gunpowder and nuts and bolts. It's what you and I would do with shotgun shells and our workshops.
What is in the picture above are sophisticated Iranian made weapons. They were intercepted this past week on the border between Iran and Iraq.
This is exactly the kind of weapon cache Pete's brothers found in the soccer stadium on 11/05/2007.
When the surge of American troops was sent into Iraq in 2007, we ran into Iranian weapnory. IED's were an issue, but we had learned how to deal with it.
We had not learned that the enemy was ahead of us. Nor did we know that the enemy was Iran.
If you look at the photo, you will see to the right of the photo a line of conical shapes. They are pure-copper shaped charges.
That cone is designed to be powered by world class explosives. Not gunpowder in a coffee can. You can see the C-4 explosives in the photo. The rings.
The C-4 powers the copper explosive cone to penetrate every type of armour known to man.
The power of the explosive turns the copper cone into white hot liquid.
Thus, they are known as Explosivly Formed Penetrators. EFPs.
Screw IEDs. EFPs are the issue.
That is the type of bomb that killed Pete.
A piece of Iranian made copper entered his temple and penetrated his brain as his platoon was outside an Iraqi police station guarding the entrance to the Green Zone.
It blinded Gage in one eye. Pieces of Iranian copper are still being picked out of the men in Pete's vehicle two years later.
These weapons have killed and wounded many in Iraq.
And now, these weapons are killing and wounding our men in Afghanistan. Because Iran is now shipping their weaponry to the new front.
IED is a term as old fashioined as musket balls.
EFPs have been killing our folks in Iraq and Afghanistan for the last six years.
And they will continue to kill our men and women until we find better armour, or, we change the strategy of the fight.