first published on September 23, 2019 by Will
A video reportedly from southern Helmand Province, Afghanistan, recorded in 2014, shows an American mounted patrol being targeted by a 60 pound IED and sustaining relatively minimal damage.
IEDs will ever be a primary tactic for insurgent groups that are facing a more technologically advanced and better armed conventional force.
Afghanistan is an IED nightmare, considering there are very few paved roads. Explosive devices can be concealed literally anywhere along the roadway. IEDs hidden under the road, and detonated directly under the target vehicle are especially lethal.
Tactics for the employment, as well as the defense against IEDs have continued to evolve. With the initial rise of the insurgency in Iraq, US troops were rolling in soft skin Humvees, and a single improvised artillery shell booby trap placed haphazardly could inflict significant cusualties.
The US mitigated that threat by adding thick armored doors to the sides of their vehicles, and the insurgents countered that by making bigger bombs and developing explosively formed penetrating (EFP) IEDs, which could cut through armor like butter.
Additional IED deterrents developed to reduce IED casualties included electronic countermeasure devices (ECM), which jammed various frequencies near the vehicles, which wouldn’t allow certain remote activated devices to detonate until the convoy was past. Vehicles with V-shaped hulls were also developed to direct blasts away from the vehicle’s occupants.