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Wounded Times

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Sunday, June 9, 2013

Soldiers on motorcycles might be most effective in Afghanistan

Soldiers on motorcycles might be most effective in Afghanistan
By Seth Robson
Stars and Stripes
Published: June 8, 2013

In the past decade the U.S. has spent $45 billion on armored vehicles designed to protect troops against the roadside bombs which cost the enemy next to nothing to build and emplace.

It seems counter-intuitive, but some experts think a safer and more effective way to take on the bad guys might be to ditch the heavy armor in favor of a lighter, faster mode of transport. Many say that in places like Afghanistan, motorcycles would be a cheaper, safer and more effective vehicle for operations than the slow-moving armored personnel carriers preferred by the U.S. military.

It’s not a new concept.

In 1916, Gen. John “Black Jack” Pershing used Harley-Davidson motorcycles with machine guns mounted on sidecars during his hunt for revolutionary Pancho Villa along the border with Mexico.

The War Department fielded 60,000 more Harleys in World Wars I and II, and Kawasaki motorcycles are still used by the Air Force and Marine Corps today for air field surveys, convoy control and reconnaissance.
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