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30 April 2009

New gear puts snipers in check in Iraq

from USA TODAY by Tom Vanden Brook

Sniper attacks by insurgents on U.S. troops in Iraq have been eliminated so far this year, the result of better equipment and training and taming the insurgency, according to military officials and records.

There were 92 attacks last year and none so far this year, records show.

Because improved tactics and technology have helped slash the number of attacks, commanders in Afghanistan — where ambushes and sniper attacks have increased — are asking for technology that can pinpoint the source of gunfire, said Maj. Shawn Lucas, who helps coordinate countersniper efforts at the Pentagon.

Sniper attacks increased from 10 in 2007 to 19 in 2008, according to the U.S. military in Afghanistan. There have been five sniper attacks so far this year.

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