Not every cache is as big as represented in the pic but I can tell you one
thing, you never loose respect for any discovered or foiled IED or
discovered cache. As soon as you loose the respect of it (like lets say
lightening in a thunder storm) it gets you. (click on picture for larger version)
It wasn't uncommon to find an
IED, disarm it, watch for ambush of follow on IEDs then move 20 yards and
find a cache where some scumbag had hidden more rounds to fill the hole that
was created by his first IED the following day.
I had an Iraqi BN embedded with my company and we got really good at finding
and staying one step ahead of the badguys trying to ambush us. To the point
our Iraqi counter parts began feeling a bit out done. This resulted in
nothing but healthy competition and honing of the skills to out think the
enemy and find his cache before he was able to use it.
You can find some pretty primitive IEDs that kill nonetheless. Our tactics
change as quick or even quicker than the enemies. It's a deadly cat and
mouse game that can cost you big if you aren't razor sharp and get caught.
So now add the 120 temps, moral, sweat , fatigue and the prevention of
complacently and go out every day and not get caught by the cat. The enemy
is thinking and doing the exact same thing but they have home field
The black bars you see in the pic are bars of C4 placed by our Explosive
Ordinance Disposal teams. The key is to incinerate the unexploded ordinance
(UXO) not spread them all over Gods country side when you blow them up. You
can also see all of the artillery shells laying there have a hole in the
nose (no fuse to activate it) so it is relatively safe until a scumbag
droops some det chord in it with an initiator, then game on. These type of
"shots" are great to watch as the shock wave alone is usually very
impressive let alone the explosion.