Soldiers spray the plastic goo before they enter a suspected insurgency
stronghold. Silly String can shoot strands up to four meters.
Ms. Shriver was told by her son Todd, who serves in Iraq, that U.S.
troops use Silly String to detect trip wires around bombs. She has acquired
more than 1,000 cans of the neon-colored product in her home outside
"If I turn on the TV and see a soldier with a can of this on his vest,
that would make this all worth it," Ms. Shriver, a 57-year-old office
The manufacturer of Silly String, Just for Kicks Inc. based in
Watertown, N.Y., has donated its product to the U.S. military. Other
companies manufacture a similar product, dubbed "party string" or "crazy
"Everyone in the entire corporation is very pleased that we can be
involved in something like this," Rob Oram, Just for Kicks product
marketing manager, said.
Lt. Col. Christopher Garver, a U.S. military spokesman in Baghdad, said
soldiers and Marines have been encouraged to devise anti-IED methods. Garver
said commanders were given money to buy nonstandard supplies.
For example, U.S. soldiers have bolted scrap metal to Humvees in what
has been dubbed "Hillybilly Armor." They also welded old bulletproof
windshields to the tops of Humvees to provide extra protection to gunners.
Ms. Shriver has found a pilot who pledged to fly the aerosol cans to
Kuwait in 2007. The U.S. Postal Service has refused to deliver aerosol cans
"I know that he's going come through this," Ms. Shriver said. "I hope
they all do."