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View Full Version : Bomb Buster for Iraq Hits Pentagon Snag



SWJED
02-12-2006, 12:04 PM
12 Feb Los Angeles Times - Bomb Buster for Iraq Hits Pentagon Snag (http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/world/la-fg-ied12feb12,0,288814.story?coll=la-home-headlines).


A new high-tech vehicle that destroys roadside bombs has passed a series of U.S. military tests but has not yet been sent into battle, prompting charges that Pentagon bureaucracy is slowing the effort to protect American troops in Iraq.

Last April, Army Brig. Gen. Joseph Votel, the commander of a Pentagon task force in charge of finding ways to combat the makeshift bombs known as improvised explosive devices, or IEDs, endorsed development of the vehicle, called the Joint IED Neutralizer. The remote-controlled device blows up roadside bombs with a directed electrical charge, and based on Votel's assessment, then-deputy Defense Secretary Paul D. Wolfowitz recommended investing $30 million in research and sending prototypes to Iraq for testing.

But 10 months later and after a prototype destroyed about 90% of the IEDs laid in its path during a battery of tests not a single JIN has been shipped to Iraq.

To many in the military, the delay in deploying the vehicles, which resemble souped-up, armor-plated golf carts, is a case study in the Pentagon's inability to bypass cumbersome peacetime procedures to meet the urgent demands of troops in the field. More than half of U.S. combat deaths in Iraq have been caused by roadside bombs, and the number of such attacks nearly doubled last year compared with 2004...