Washington, DC, April 19, 2011 --(PR.com
)-- A sleeper agent posing as a member of the Afghanistan Army detonated a suicide bomb vest inside a NATO training meeting this weekend, killing ten others in the attack, including five NATO troopers.
“The explosives were hidden inside his uniform, the exact scenario we have seen and have been warned of time and time again,” says Richard Salem, CEO and founder of Thermal Matrix USA, a leader in PBIED (person-borne improvised explosive device) research and product development. “This attack, combined with others just this month, leaves no doubt that new technology must immediately be deployed to keep our forces safe.”
The attack came at Forward Operating Base Gamberi on the border of the Laghman and Nangarhar Provinces in eastern Afghanistan. The Taliban claimed responsibility, saying the attacker had joined the army a month ago. Since then he had participated in training and worked alongside other NATO troops, as he waited for the moment to strike. This past Saturday, as Afghan army members met with NATO troops, he found it.
“The enemy has entered every part of the government. They are everywhere, whether it’s government institutions or our villages,” says Noor al-Haq Olumi, a former Afghan Army general. “This year I believe it will be more violent because there will be more attacks like this one.”
“The acceleration of terrorists wearing uniforms of friendly forces will continue until we prove we can prevent those terrorists from carrying out their terrible intentions,” Salem said. “Fortunately, Thermal Matrix has standoff suicide bomb detection technology available right now, ready to save lives.”
Since 2005, Thermal Matrix has worked with U.S. military officials to develop technology that can detect suicide bombers at extreme standoff distances, stopping a dangerous attack before it can be initiated. Using infrared imagery, the Thermal Matrix ACT system analyzes the heat signature of approaching individuals to determine if they are hiding something beneath their clothing. The system is able to detect all forms of threat devices, including plastic, powder, liquid and gel explosives.
“Only when we prove we can prevent these attacks will they stop,” says Thermal Matrix Executive Director Michael Reinpoldt. “Our advanced software combined with the powerful optics of our thermal imagers would have done that in this instance. Once the bomber was detected, security forces could have detained him long before his planned point of attack. I have no doubt the ACT system would have saved many lives, if only the system was in use at the base.”
Unfortunately, this type of attack is increasing in frequency. On Friday a man in a police uniform entered a tightly secured police headquarters in Kandahar City, waited until the police chief appeared, then detonated his hidden suicide bomb, killing the chief and two other officers. On Monday in Kabul, another man also dressed in an Afghan military uniform entered the Ministry of Defense, opened fire, killing at least two people and injuring seven. It was the third time in four days that an attacker dressed in an Afghan uniform gained access to a secure area, and then carried out a deadly attack.
“The enemy has showed its hand, by repeatedly infiltrating Afghan forces and using deception to kill,” Salem said. “Now is the time for us to act, and use threat detection technology specifically designed to stop these tragedies.
More information on Thermal Matrix and the ACT Suicide Bomb Detection System can be found at ThermalMatrixUSA.net.