Wednesday, July 28, 2010

ADE 651: The Great Bomb Detector Swindle?

The FBI had already cast doubts with regards to the effectiveness of such devices as far back as 1995, was there a conspiracy to cover-up the ineffectiveness of the ADE 651 and related bomb detectors?

By: Ringo Bones

Despite Downing Street immediately slapping an export ban on UK-based companies selling the ADE 651 Bomb Detector, which costs 40 thousand US dollars each and related devices back in the beginning of February 2010. After their “ineffectiveness” has caused a diplomatic row not just in Iraq but in Thailand as well. Manufacturers of related devices – whom they claim works on the same principle on dowsing rods – claim that their “bomb detectors” can also be used to detect hidden narcotics and elephants. But how effective are these devices and was there a cover-up to hide their ineffectiveness?

The United States’ Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) had found out as far back as 1995 that “dowsing rod-type bomb detectors” such as the Quadro Tracker by ATSC was proven to be fraudulent. Experts say about as effective as a plastic enclosure with a car aerial sticking out of it when it comes to bomb detection. But inexplicably the disparaging finding of a prestigious law enforcement agency – i.e. the FBI - was immediately hushed-up.

Fast forward to the March 2003 Bush administration’s invasion of Iraq supposedly part of the War on Terror to deny al-Qaeda access to WMDs. No WMDs were found yet the fraudulent bomb detectors – like the ADE 651 – were sold to the local Iraqi law enforcement as a means of detecting Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) with catastrophic results. But why do such devices have flown pass the scrutiny of tenured experts in the UK?

ADE 651 and related bomb sniffers supposedly work like water dowsing / dowsing rod. Dowsing for water – in theory – is based on the assumption that there is this natural resonant frequency inherent in all matter. This “resonance” supposedly interacts with the brain waves of the one holding or manipulating the dowsing rod in order to spot a hidden concentration of water or other material.

One of the UK’s finest minds – Professor Richard Dawkins – has long since disproved that dowsing rods were able to detect hidden deposits of water for about as long as he’s been debunking myths and dubious pseudoscientific mumbo-jumbo being passed on as the latest discovery. It is not just Prof. Dawkins who had cast doubt whether such dowsing rod based detectors other UK based tenured experts had recently demonstrated the quackery behind the ADE 651 and related bomb detecting equipment.

Foremost UK-based explosives expert Dr. Sidney Alford was both surprised and appalled on why such devices flew past even the most casual of scrutiny by consumer watchdogs and their intended buyers and users. The “consumer watchdogs” only began their investigation on the dubious nature of the technology behind the ADE 651 Bomb Detector after a large number of Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) has slipped passed patrols armed with such bomb detectors and managed to be set-off in supposedly safe zones in Iraq.

Another proof of the dubiousness of the technology behind dowsing rod type bomb detectors was uncovered by Professor Bruce Wood a cognitive scientists of Bristol Cognitive Development Centre. Prof. Wood also has doubts on whether dowsing rod type devices can work in real world applications. While Dr. Markus Kuhn of Cambridge Computer Labs reverse engineers he “different” cards that can supposedly detect different types of explosives and other types of contraband were found out to be nothing more than high-street shop anti-theft device. They are even bereft of micro-controller circuits that can be programmed to detect various explosives and other contraband.

The diplomatic row - that ensued a few years later - of the useless bomb detectors that cost the post 2003 invasion Iraq government 85 million US dollars. Only came after the high casualty rate of coordinated IED and suicide bombing attacks that were not stopped despite of the ADE 651 and related bomb detectors being widely used. Not surprisingly, Jim McCormic – chief executive of the company that manufactures the fraudulent bomb detectors was immediately arrested for fraud by the end of January 2010. But was there a concerted cover-up – a government conspiracy if you will - on why such dowsing rod type bomb detectors became widely used in Operation Iraqi Freedom despite of their ineffectiveness?

There might be a document or two on the 92,000 Wikileaks documents highlighting not only the malfeasant nature of the Bush Administration era War on Terror. But also on why dowsing rod type bomb detectors flew past the muster of government procurement auditors despite of an FBI complaint back in 1995 casting doubt on the effectiveness of such devices. But until then, BBC, CNN and other major news providers have more than 90,000 documents to sort through, only time will tell.

1 comment:

  1. I wonder what "expletives" were used by Dr. Sidney Alford and Prof. Richard Dawkins when the BBC asked them both on their views of the person behind the runaway marketing of the now useless ADE 651 Bomb Detector, Jim McCormic / Jim McCormick.