Combating Improvised Explosive Devices: Is America Ready for Another Boston?

  • Lieutenant Colonel Colin P. Nikkila

As demonstrated by the Boston Bombings, the threat of Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) at home and abroad has not reduced since the end of major combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. It's been nearly three years since Boston. The President has published strategic policy to combat the threat, however actions taken by the Department of Defense to respond have been inadequate considering the threat and responsibilities. The DoD’s roles and responsibilities must be more clearly defined while in support of the homeland. Explosive Ordnance Disposal response is needed by the Interagency, but better efficiencies from the explosive enterprise stakeholders must be gathered and embraced. Both federal law and DoD policies must be updated to focus on all threats, and increased cooperation and interoperability within the Interagency must be realized.