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Bomb Sniffing Snake Oil Exposed

by christian on November 3, 2010

There’s nothing like a Hobbesian conflict zone to smoke out the bottom feeders of the defense industry. And when the car bomb and suicide vest are top killers in your country, who wouldn’t grasp at straws to find an easy solution.

The Washington Post ran a story today that should remind DT readers what’s wrong with defense industry scam artists and their callous profiteering on the worries of a war ravaged populace.

The ADE-651 bomb detecting device has been debunked by Western experts and media investigations for years, but in its desperate attempt to stem the rash of bombings across the country, Iraqi security services, until very recently, deemed the device a success.

The Iraqi Interior Ministry inspector general recently determined that wands used by police as the frontline defense in the country’s fight against bombs are worthless.

His finding was unsurprising. But in today’s Iraq, it had the potential to be politically explosive. What the ministry did in response to the inspector general’s conclusion speaks volumes about how the Iraqi government works these days — and why so often it doesn’t.

For years, U.S. military officials have called the devices a scam. The British government this year jailed the manufacturer of the ADE-651 gadgets on fraud charges and banned the company from exporting more.

Whether it’s pure stupidity, blind faith, pure corruption or embarrassment over the $85 million dumped into this bomb-sniffing alchemy, the Iraqi interior ministry has still not removed the devices from checkpoints. No need to get on your hands and knees and do a proper search for carbombs Ahmed, just point this antenna and it’ll find it for you…

Be sure to read the rest of the Post’s story on the ADE-651.

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