<%@LANGUAGE="VBSCRIPT" CODEPAGE="1252"%> WorldTribune.com: Mobile U.S. reports it has neutralized IED threat in Iraq

U.S. reports it has neutralized IED threat in Iraq

Tuesday, June 17, 2008 Free Headline Alerts

WASHINGTON The U.S. military has succeeded in clearing 50 percent of improvised explosive devices in Iraq while simultaneously improving force protection.

Officials said the military's use of advanced jammers and detectors has led to a significant drop in IED attacks in Iraq. They said the equipment and new methods used by the military has resulted in a sharp drop in casualties from roadside and other bombs.

"Our soldiers are so good they'll win this thing," Lt. Gen. Thomas Metz, director of the Joint IED Defeat Organization, said. "They find and clear more than 50 percent of them, and we've given them the protection to survive almost every time."

Metz said IEDs have become the leading method of attack in Iraq. Addressing the Association of the U.S. Army's Institute of Land Warfare on June 4, he said insurgents have increased the average monthly IED production to 2,800.

"That's not trivial," Metz said. "That's a factory somebody is paying for the bomb makers to make it, logistics to deliver it, people to disburse it, dig it in and to ignite it."

The general said the military's counter-IED campaign has been enhanced by air and ground surveillance. Metz said the military in Iraq employs unmanned aerial vehicles, robots and specialized search dogs to detect and jam remote-controlled IEDs.

"We have worked hard to get him [Iraqi insurgent] off the radio control business, pushed out jamming devices, spending billions," Metz said. "We pushed the enemy and pushed him away from that so his option was to go less sophisticated, back to command wires and pressure plates."

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