Sunday, August 14, 2005

The Bombmaker, The Financier, and The Emplacer.

As you are probably aware I have blogged quite a bit on a discussion between several different blogs on technology and its role in warfare.

Wretchard took the side that this was a battle the terrorists can not win and almost seems fearful of the technologies that will be developed to combat terrorism. After all, the djinni is not going to go back into the bottle after the GWOT is over.

Bill Roggio takes the stand that technology while important is less significant than the human factors. He points out that impregnable castles were defeated by not attacking the castles but by attacking the surrounding area forcing the opposition to come out of their castles to do battle in the open.

The terrorists in Iraq are not dumb. Much reading done today shows they have many IED teams floating about who contract their services. The teams are made up of about six or so people.

The Command Post finds some good analysis of what the general organization of the IED teams for example
Like the emplacer, the triggerman's primary motivation is money. Sometimes these lower-level operatives will hire themselves out as a package, changing affiliations based on money. If an alternative means of earning money is provided for the emplacer and the triggerman, they can take them out of operation, Formica said.
Source: Global Guerrillas - THE IED MARKETPLACE IN IRAQ

The others in these ghoulish gangs are the financier, the bombmaker, and possibly suicide bombers. The financiers, the bombmaker, and the suicidi The financiers are usually ex-Baathist officials with cash and smarts, they know how to game the system all around. The financiers are rarely caught, and are ideologically committed.

The bombmakers are described as commodities. Easily replaced and killing or capturing them does not stop the IED gang for too long. They can find another one quickly. The suicidi, well duh!

However, the weakness is the emplacer (the fellow who plants the bomb) and the triggerman. As is stated above they are simply in the game for the money (again we are talking generalizations). As is the case with money driven people, if they can get better pay-risk deal it sounds like the marketplace for emplacers/triggermen will dry up or the suicidis will have to be forced into living.

So, what factor is key? Economic aid and development. This development must be built up properly. We in the West value productivity more than anything else because we know the more we produce more we earn. In places like Iraq it is hard for people to adapt (at this point in time) to such rapid changes.

In fact, I recall hearing an officer in charge of some project somewhere brought in a ditchwitch to dig a ditch. His superior saw this and got on his case about it. Why? Don't do it with a machine, hire a crew of Iraqi men to do it. Give them a job and pay them!

Believe me, I saw this plenty in the UAE. Crews of men digging ditches instead of a machine and why not, the cost of the labor was cheaper than buying and maintaining the machine.

Another case of how idle hands are the devil's workshop.

Just a last thought, does any of this remind you of the "butcher, the baker, and the candlestick maker"?