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Thread: Huge Attack Planned for Kabul

  1. #1
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    Default Huge Attack Planned for Kabul

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-17796556

    Afghan security officials say they have foiled a huge attack in the capital Kabul, as they gave details of the seizure of 10 tonnes of explosives.
    He said three of the captured militants are Pakistani citizens, and two are Afghans.

    'Confessions'

    The five suspects had confessed that the planned attack was co-ordinated by two Taliban commanders with links to Pakistan's main intelligence organisation the Inter-Services Intelligence agency (ISI), according to the spokesman.

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    Many more where that came from.
    The somewhat pessimistic Khalid Ahmed comments on the post-withdrawal scenario: http://tribune.com.pk/story/368057/p...an-withdrawal/

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    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Not that I expect this information is in the public domain. What type of explosive(s) made up the ten tonnes? Military or civil origin; assuming it is possible to be so clear-cut.
    davidbfpo

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    Quote Originally Posted by davidbfpo View Post
    Not that I expect this information is in the public domain. What type of explosive(s) made up the ten tonnes? Military or civil origin; assuming it is possible to be so clear-cut.
    Bill M: Can you make any guesses about David's question just from the photos in the BBC story?

    If they were attempting mass murder like the story reports, is this something new for Afghanistan? It sounds like some of the nightmare mass killings in Iraq. And I also read that in the past, attacks that got a lot of civilians killed in Afghanistan mostly led back to the ISI. Is this similar?
    "We fight, get beat, rise, and fight again." Gen. Nathanael Greene

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    Default At the risk of being put on some sort of DHS list…

    Quote Originally Posted by davidbfpo View Post
    Not that I expect this information is in the public domain. What type of explosive(s) made up the ten tonnes? Military or civil origin; assuming it is possible to be so clear-cut.
    I only know this because I live next to a quarry, really!, my first guess would be ANFO.
    If you don’t read the newspaper, you are uninformed; if you do read the newspaper, you are misinformed. – Mark Twain (attributed)

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    http://www.bing.com/videos/watch/vid.../6nkbv6o?from=

    Here a video of the explosive material being off loaded the truck. It appears to be homemade explosives (HME). The majority of HME is normally fertilizer based, especially when it is large quantities like this. It must be certain type of fertilizer (chemical compound), and in Afghanistan the bulk of this fertilizer comes from Pakistan for both agricultural and other purposes. If the fertilizer is going to be used in an IED it needs to be further prepped, and it also requires an initiator charge (which is often conventional military explosives), and some other items. I suspect those other items were readily available.

    Link below is a sampling of Taliban munitions captured during different raids.

    http://publicintelligence.net/afghan...itions-photos/

    Also relevant (even if dated):

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/c...e-Taliban.html

    In the same month US Marines captured a vast cache of IEDs made from agricultural ammonium nitrate fertiliser in 25 kilogram bags indistinguishable from the thousands of tons of fertiliser supplied to Afghanistan under Western aid programmes. It has long been obvious that many of the roadside bombs used to kill British and other Western troops are made from fertiliser paid for by UK and other Western taxpayers.
    I thought we quit doing this, so I'm not sure this article is correct.

    http://abcnews.go.com/Blotter/afghan...ry?id=15306670

    "We are capturing hundreds of thousands of pounds of CAN, much of it in original bags, with detonation cord, with plastic caps, with time fuses from Pakistan," says a senior U.S. military intelligence official. "You get a complete system, including CAN, to make hundreds if not thousands of IEDs… There's no doubt it's all coming from Pakistan."
    The size of the bust while significant isn't unheard of, but obviously the location of the bust in the capital is a concern.
    Last edited by Bill Moore; 04-23-2012 at 09:19 AM. Reason: One link repeated and removed

  7. #7
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Default T'is ANFO

    Bill,

    Thanks for the input.

    I expected it would be ANFO and the use of this fertiliser to make bombs has been remarked upon here before. Sometime ago whilst watching a BBC newsreel I spotted bags of fertiliser being moved in Helmand Province and learnt later it was UK aid (by our civil agency, DFID). Much later it was alleged that DFID was purchasing this from Pakistan, but had not required the chemical composition to be changed so making it non-explosive - a little odd given our experience in Northern Ireland. In the UK the composition had been changed rather rapidly by all the manufacturers.

    Hopefully by now the Pakistani government has made the producers change the chemical composition.

    In the photos of the munitions found I noted several Lee Enfield 303 rifles; still in use decades later.
    davidbfpo

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