Monday, February 12, 2007
Encyclopedia Brown On The Case
It looks like we're going to have to add another three-letter acronym to our vocabulary in a hurry, because after WMD's and IED's, we're now going to be hearing quite a bit about EFP's (explosively formed penetrators).
A good part of the case laid out by American intelligence supposedly proving that Iran has been supplying Iraqi insurgents with mortar shells and RPG's is based on the weapons' serial numbers:
The shells had serial numbers in English in order to comply with international standards for arms, the officials said. One grenade, for instance, was marked with the serial number P.G.7-AT-1 followed by LOT:5-31-2006. The officials said that the serial numbers clearly identified the grenade as being of Iranian manufacture and the date showed that it had been made in 2006.
Now, here's a question that no one seems to have asked, but that I'm trying to get answered. Is it possible to manufacture these weapons without the serial numbers, or with falsified ones, or to in some other way get around the international weapons standards? And if so, is it likely that the Iranians would leave such an obvious fingerprint on their work? I'll post the answer as soon as I get one.