Booby-trapped hand grenades


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Oleg Volk
June 2, 2005, 09:33 PM
How are zero-delay hand genades marked by different armies to distinguish them from the real thing?

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Third_Rail
June 2, 2005, 09:35 PM
:uhoh:


I wasn't aware of such a thing. What a smart idea... if you're not the one to test them. :neener:



EDIT: Did a bit of Googling...


The OSS requisitioned a quantity of Mk IIs with zero delay fuses for use as booby traps with tripwire and tape in each container. The container and arming handle were secured with red tape warning of immediate detonation when the handle was released. A red metal tag on the pull ring offered the same warning. Some of these were used in Korea by UN partisan forces.*

Preacherman
June 2, 2005, 09:41 PM
When we found terrorist arms dumps, we didn't mark them at all... just swapped out every third grenade fuse for an instantaneous detonator. After a few terrorists came to sticky ends, they would abandon the lot!

Same applied to other munitions. Take every tenth round, pull the bullet, remove the propellant and insert industrial dynamite - then re-insert the bullet, put back in magazine or belt, and await results. Ever seen a receiver that's fired a round like that? Not pretty...

(Oh - and do make sure - VERY sure - to warn your own forces never, EVER to use any captured munitions, because your experiments might be to their detriment! :D )

Third_Rail
June 2, 2005, 09:45 PM
Smart smart smart.... I wonder if our boys in Iraq are doing the same? Man, I sure hope so.... :evil:

RevDisk
June 2, 2005, 09:51 PM
How are zero-delay hand genades marked by different armies to distinguish them from the real thing?

They aren't, body marking wise. Sorta defeats the purpose. It's the same grenade (usually), just different fuse.


Smart smart smart.... I wonder if our boys in Iraq are doing the same? Man, I sure hope so....

Generally, no. All weapons are supposed to be policed up and usually destroyed. Some are re-issued to the Iraqi forces.

Arc-Lite
June 2, 2005, 09:58 PM
same tactic used in nam.. lace the ammo dumps with exploding ammo...

Derek Zeanah
June 2, 2005, 10:09 PM
I believe Germans in WW2 had two blue colors for the pull-cords -- one was normal, one was "instant."

In the time before color photography had really caught on, that might have been good enough...

c_yeager
June 3, 2005, 05:20 AM
This is why i always get a kick out of people who think having ammo compatability with the enemy is a good thing. Scavenged ordinance = BAD idea.

max popenker
June 3, 2005, 05:50 AM
The most entertaining video clip that i've seen was that filmed by Chechen terrorists when testing a newly obtained recoilless rifle. The RR was apparently bought from some "bad" Russian army officer, who indeed turned not so bad.

On the video tape, one of the bearded Chechchen 'fighters' loaded the RR, screamed 'Allah Akbar' and pulled the cord... Bang... and he's blown into pieces along with RR - apparently, the ammo was booby-trapped by the 'seller'.

The C4-filled rifle and MG ammo also reportedly has been sold many times to such 'rebels' by similar 'bad' Russian army officers.

What can i say - that's a fair trade.

jefnvk
June 3, 2005, 06:58 AM
Scavenged ordinance = BAD idea.

My uncle, who was over in Iraq, told me that no one was allowed to fire anything captured until the armorers had a llok at. Seems the Iraqis had a habit of doing that very thing, drilling holes in the reciever under the handguards, etc.

myrockfight
June 3, 2005, 08:10 AM
Same applied to other munitions. Take every tenth round, pull the bullet, remove the propellant and insert industrial dynamite - then re-insert the bullet, put back in magazine or belt, and await results. Ever seen a receiver that's fired a round like that? Not pretty... -Preacherman

I read about that in a book written by someone who was in Special Ops. He also said that he came across an North Vietnamese guy who had a bolt that flew up in his face and killed him. He made the remark wondering if it was one of their "reworked" rounds.

He also noted that the North Vietnamese were so confused with the situation, that they were questioning the ammunition suppliers (Chinese and Russians? IIRC). Planting bad munitions created more bad reprecussions the enemy than they originally expected - happily, of course. PsyOps are great when they are working in your favor!

Anyone know the source (s)? I don't have my extensive collection of books with me at this moment.

foghornl
June 3, 2005, 08:33 AM
Older high school friend told me of that trick used in Viet Nam....

Pull the bullets, dump powder and then refill cases with either Hercules (Now Alliant Powders) Unique or Bullseye. I don't remember which one he said they used, but it most resembled the original powder. Would make for about a 5x to 8x overcharge....got real interesting for the shooter.

280PLUS
June 3, 2005, 10:10 AM
Anyone know the source (s)?

I have two titles in mind, one of which I believe has some stories related to "salting" ammo dumps and IRRC a story about a junior officer who thought he could throw a 0 delay grenade away before it went off. Lost the arm trying. There was reference to "What part of "instantaneous" didn't he understand"

Either "Walking Point" by James Watson or "Dear Mom" by Joseph Ward. I skimmed through both but could not find it. Not enough time right now.

I'm leaning toward "Dear Mom" but I'm not sure.

HankB
June 3, 2005, 10:14 AM
I would hope that when our troops in Iraq find an unattended arms cache, that at least sometimes they booby trap it. This strikes me as a most excellent idea.

But it wouldn't surprise me if some politically correct REMF issued orders prohibiting this.

Rabid Rabbit
June 3, 2005, 10:17 AM
IIRC my opfor training (20 years ago) correctly the russian grenades had a number stamped on the spoon or the hammerfor the number of seconds delay.

benEzra
June 3, 2005, 04:32 PM
I read that the French supplied some zero-delay grenades and explosive-loaded rifle ammunition to a terrorist group in Algeria(?)...not long after, two terrorists blew themselves up while trying to throw grenades into a crowded marketplace...

Bob R
June 3, 2005, 06:42 PM
Years ago in Djoubiti (before the current buildup of US troops), I had the opportunity to hang out with a couple of French Foreign Legionaires from the US.

At the time (and probably still so), Djoubiti was a haven for trafficking in illegal arms. They did the same that other countries did. Whenever they found people with grenades, rifles, whatever, they would sabotage a few of them so they would maim or kill the user and leave the rest.

They said salting a case of grenades with a few with instant fuses helped keep the sale of them down. They did the same to ammo, and weapons.

As a side note, it seemed the favorite pastime of the legionaires in Djoubiti was to try to pick fights with the regular frech army people stationed there. Seldom did the french rise to the challenge, they sat there and allowed themselve to be insulted and degraded by the legionaires.

It was also home to the "BEST" crepe restaurant I have ever eaten at.


bob

Double Maduro
June 3, 2005, 08:03 PM
There is also the story about the gang bangers in LA a couple years ago. Seems these Einstiens stole some smoke grenades and decided to make real ones out of them by substituting gunpowder for the smoke agent.

Got 'em all fixed up and went cruising, saw some people they didn't like, pulled the pin, well you know the rest....

DM

Rebar
June 3, 2005, 08:07 PM
My understanding is that a fuse was taken from a smoke grenade (which is an instant fuse), and used with a standard grenade. Is that correct?

critter
June 3, 2005, 08:15 PM
Rebar, I have a friend who is a Viet Nam vet who said that was common practice. They also, then, added a little C-4 for 'spice' and those 'enhanced' grenades were used to set booby traps. A pulled pin, a little monofilament and an 'enhanced' grenade ruined a lot of VC's day according to him.

english kanigit
June 3, 2005, 08:17 PM
280, you are indeed thinking of the book Walking Point. Very, very good read.

If I remember right, he even wrote about planting mortar rounds to the same effect. Apparently, after lacing a cache with the bogus mortars, it only took a few nights for enemy mortars to all but stop firing. Something about finding a mortar tube peeled back like a banana...

280PLUS
June 3, 2005, 09:13 PM
I'll try and find it again and post the excerpt.

Dear Mom was a good one too.

Have you read Ion Idriess' "The Desert Column"?

That one will bring the realities of war home to you.

280

DMK
June 3, 2005, 09:25 PM
I would hope that when our troops in Iraq find an unattended arms cache, that at least sometimes they booby trap it. This strikes me as a most excellent idea.

But it wouldn't surprise me if some politically correct REMF issued orders prohibiting this. I think the bigest problem with this today is you have many allies using the same weapons and ammo as your enemies. There are a lot of good guys operating AKs, RPKs, RPGs, etc in Iraq and Afganistan.

Back in the time of the Korean and SEA conflicts most everyone on your side used NATO weapons and the enemies almost always used Warsaw Pact weapons.

280PLUS
June 3, 2005, 10:11 PM
There's actually 2 sections. One on hand grenades and one on salting ammo caches.

From "Walking Point" By James Watson pp181-182

"Fragmentation grenades worked so well as improvised booby traps that we had some M26 grenades specially made just for that use. The special M26 grenade looked exactly like a standard grenade except that there was no delay element in the fuze. When the pin was pulled and the spoon released the grenade went off. Carefully packaged and marked so that they were not confused with our regular munitions, the zero delay grenades were being used in Vitenam by mid-1968."

"Besides being useful as a boobytrap, a zero delay grenade could be left behind, "accidentally" dropped in an area where only the VC could find it. But in spite of everthing we did nothing is completely foolproof. Never underestimate a fool."

Next part covers how they would booby trap sensors with the grenades to protect them from being captured. Later they would have to disarm and remove the sensors. They would attach a cord to the sensor and pull it away from the grenade at a safe distance and the grenade was supposed to detonate harmlessly.

"Instead of falling away like the earlier grenades, the third grenade stuck to the mud on the sensor and wouldn't come off. When the sensor was pulled on board the PBR, the grenade came along with it. The RIVDIV (River Division) lieutenant who was on the PBR pulled the grenade free of the sensor, keeping the spoon secured in his hand. All that had to be done now was secure the spoon somehow, perhaps with a pin taken from a smoke grenade, and everything would have been all right. This was where the fool part of "foolproof" came into play.

That lieutenant knew the grenade had a zero delay fuze on it. Instead of doing the smart thing, he figured he could throw the grenade far enough away so that when it went off, it wouldn't hurt anyone. I wonder what part of "zero delay" that officer didn't understand.

As soon as the grenade left the lieutenant's hand, the spoon came up and the grenade went off. Four men, including one SEAL, were seriously wounded by the explosion. Another four men, including a Vietnamese LDNN, were slightly wounded. The SEAL who was badly injured had to be medevaced out and eventually lost an eye from his injuries. And the lieutenant who had caused the incident was injured badly, losing a portion of his arm. When that officer was visited by some SEALs later, his comment to them was, "If I had only thrown it harder."

It didn't matter how hard a zero delay grenade was thrown; it would go off as soon as it left your hand. But some guys just never learn"

That's all I can do right now, I'll try to post the part about salting ammo tommorrow. It's a bit longer.

Kevlarman
June 3, 2005, 10:41 PM
Maybe if you put some gum on the underside of the spoon, it would not instantly get flung away and explode. :confused: :D

How easy is it to just unscrew the detonator off of grenades?

Kharn
June 3, 2005, 10:53 PM
Too bad the officer didnt think about wrapping some 100mph tape around the spoon and the body.

Kharn

280PLUS
June 3, 2005, 11:37 PM
A lot of those young officers had a lot of smarts BUT NO COMMON SENSE!

I could bore you and take us off topic with a good Ensign story. But I won't.

;)

c_yeager
June 4, 2005, 03:11 AM
Im not sure if i really buy a lot of the booby-trap stories.

Really ask yourself this; If you were fighting in a country and you came upon a pile of enemy ordnance do you:

A) destroy it

or

B) Sabotogue a few of them, knowing that 90% of the box contains ordinance that will be used against your fellow soldiers.

Our enemies generally dont have a problem with dying. If you hand them a box of 10 grenades with one of them being trapped, they still have 9 grenades to kill your guys with.

Preacherman
June 4, 2005, 11:37 AM
c_yeager, you've got it wrong. Imagine you're an insurgent/guerilla/terrorist/whatever. You know that in past incidents, your comrades have found that a certain proportion of their weapons have been sabotaged, and some of them have come to sticky ends as a result. You now can't trust your arms caches, as you have no idea which one(s) have been found by your enemy and "treated". Are you going to risk using any of those 10 grenades? Sure, only 1 may be booby-trapped, but how do you know which one? Are you willing to take a chance?

Not me, if I were in that situation...

cracked butt
June 4, 2005, 02:32 PM
I can see the enemy developing a serious flinch when shooting their rrifles after seeing a few of their buddies blown up by boobytrapped ammo. :evil:

c_yeager
June 5, 2005, 04:54 AM
I wouldnt take the chance either, Preacherman. I think though, that our enemies have changed a bit these days. We are fighting people who are perfectly willing to use themselves as human bombs, I dont think a 1 in 10 chance of death is going to be insurmountable, they are going to view it as a 9 in 10 chance of killing someone. Those odds may not be good enough for rational people, but rational enemies are a thing of the past.

280PLUS
June 5, 2005, 09:11 AM
Those odds may not be good enough for rational people, but rational enemies are a thing of the past.

IIRC there were Japanese pilots flying their explosive loaded planes into our ships about 60 years ago...

PvtPyle
June 5, 2005, 04:34 PM
Seems the Iraqis had a habit of doing that very thing, drilling holes in the reciever under the handguards, etc.

That turned out to be a bringback that went wrong. The Iraqis didn't do that, the Air Force guy who had it did it. His bunk mate shot it not knowing what he had done to demill the weapon. There was quite the 15-6 over that.

The Russian F-1s we recovered had a number on the bottom that denoted the delay. The Chinese grenades on the otherhand were packaged in such a way that when you un-crated them you would see the booby trap grenade. We still had 2 or 3 people get hurt and killed throwning grenades they knew nothing about. The other way to tell is to unscrew the fuse assembly. The 0 second fuse is different than the 3-5 second fuse. There is no danger (99% of the time) in unscrewing the fuse assembly. They are shipped unassembled and have to be put together in the field.

When we left, the policy was that if it could be recovered safely then do so and put it to use with the ASF or ANA. If it could not be recovered safely blow it in place. Booby trapping the enemies ammo will never take place in the modern military. It is also not very smart in that the rest of the ammo can still be used. We leave nothing behind that may fall into and be used by the enemy. Period.

Vitamin G
June 5, 2005, 05:32 PM
I feel as though the trouble into giving our enemies booby-trapped explosive devices, is that they usually set out to blow themselves up anyways.

Hawken50
June 5, 2005, 09:37 PM
i read a book, i think it was w.e.b. griffen, in wich green berets in the congo in the sixitys who were tracking che gueverra (sp). they would take zero delay grenades, put them in mason jars and pull the pin. the jar held the spoon in place. then they would drop them out of small unarmed reconnisance planes onto gueverra's "freedom fighters". jar would break when it hit the ground and the grenade would go boom. sounds pretty ingenious to me. i know i would never have though of it.

280PLUS
June 6, 2005, 06:09 AM
I recall hearing simlilar stories from Nam. Only I heard they were using mayonaise jars. Mason / mayonaise? Sounds like variations on a theme.

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