Marine brings welding skills to fight against insurgency
CAMP AL QA’IM, Iraq – When he joined the Marine Corps in 2002, Cpl. Joshua W. Dale never thought he would be using his welding experience to defeat insurgents in western Iraq.
The 23-year-old section leader with Company A, 1st Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment brought his ideas to life by inventing a breaching bumper for a humvee in his mobile assault platoon.
The breaching bumper is mounted on the front of the humvee and resembles a large arrowhead made of thick steel. The bumper is used to do one thing – tear through anything that gets in the humvee’s way.
“We needed something on our humvees to assault through barriers, like locked gates and low brick walls,” said the Silver Street, S.C., native. “This bumper will go through just about anything.”
While the bumper has not been tested as of yet, other similar devices of lesser craftsmanship have proven somewhat effective. Dale wanted to build something that would not break or bend like those he had seen crudely constructed on the fly by other Marine units.
The bumper, which allows humvees greater flexibility when assaulting the enemy during raids and cordon-and-knock operations, is an alternative to using any type of explosives – the norm when Marines encounter barriers or walls.
By Cpl. Graham A. Paulsgrove
3rd Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion