18 March 2011

New Life for the MICLIC

It's being reinvented as an IED eraser.

"We are here to rebuild, but sometimes that takes destruction," said Capt. Matthew Peterson, a company commander whose Marines were tasked in late December with clearing a key part of southern Helmand province's Sangin district — the most dangerous place for coalition troops in Afghanistan last year.
The Marines have used a much more aggressive strategy in Sangin than British troops who were there for four years before the U.S. took over. The contrast has sparked debate both inside and outside Afghanistan.
One of the key goals in the December operation in an area called Wishtan was clearing bombs from the main road to allow the Marines to maneuver freely and locals to go to the central bazaar without fear of being blown up.
The Marines used a powerful weapon called a MICLIC — Mine Clearing Line Charge — that is essentially a flexible tube several hundred feet (meters) long containing more than 1,500 pounds (680 kilograms) of C-4 explosive that is shot out along the road using a rocket, then detonated.
At least 25 bombs were destroyed and the Marines were able to clear the 3,000-foot (900-meter) long road in three days, but the blasts from the charges blew out windows, toppled walls and collapsed ceilings in the densely packed mud compounds that fill the area.

The rest of the article details how the Marines are going out rebuilding...

By: Brant

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