Catching IRA bombmakers

#1
Very clever:

One of the most interesting operations was the laundry mat [sic]. Having lost many troops and civilians to bombings, the Brits decided they needed to determine who was making the bombs and where they were being manufactured. One bright fellow recommended they operate a laundry and when asked "what the hell he was talking about," he explained the plan and it was incorporated -- to much success.

http://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2008/10/clever_countert.html
 
#3
4 Square Laundry, IIRC?

Sadly PIRA got wind of this and, err, "stopped" the operation.

Good way of forensically looking for traces of PE, ANFO etc.

From the comments - looks like an ARRSER:

"Yet another example of how inexpensive, reliable home washers and dryers help terrorists. When will we learn???"

:D
 
#5
Wow! I'd never heard of this. It just shows how a deceptively simple but imaginative idea can pay dividends. Cracking skills.

MsG
 
#6
Ah Bruce Schneier, sadly turning into the Baron Castleshort of the security world. Was really good until he became the worlds expert on the whole world and everything.
 
#7
taffplod said:
Think the Sappers were in on this in the early 70s
The guy who was killed on that op was RE

Sapper Edward Stuart. Aged 20

2nd October 1972 - Belfast - Sapper Ted Stuart
Sapper Ted Stuart was in plain clothes posing as a laundry man; he was machine-gunned to his death in his van by two Provisional
gunmen on the Twinbrook housing estate in Dunmurry, Nr Belfast.
Sapper Stuart was driving a green Morris van marked "Four Square Laundry" - a non-existent company.
A member of the Women's Royal Army Corps was posing as a delivery girl.
Speculation that he was serving with the Special Air Servive was denied.
http://www.palacebarracksmemorialgarden.org/Royal Engineers.htm
 
#8
Hmm. Clever I'll admit, but not quite as good as the classic method of accosting people at random and asking them;

"Are you an IRA bombmaker?" :D
 
#9
Bravo_Bravo said:
4 Square Laundry, IIRC?

Sadly PIRA got wind of this and, err, "stopped" the operation.

Good way of forensically looking for traces of PE, ANFO etc.

From the comments - looks like an ARRSER:

"Yet another example of how inexpensive, reliable home washers and dryers help terrorists. When will we learn???"

:D
Good 'OP' for it's time. The Int Corps on top form. I've always wondered why our team were compromised as PIRA were in no position to 'get wind' of anything. The Corps won an MC. Lives were lost, may God rest their souls'.
 
#11
Bonzo_Dog said:
taffplod said:
Think the Sappers were in on this in the early 70s
The guy who was killed on that op was RE

Sapper Edward Stuart. Aged 20

2nd October 1972 - Belfast - Sapper Ted Stuart
Sapper Ted Stuart was in plain clothes posing as a laundry man; he was machine-gunned to his death in his van by two Provisional
gunmen on the Twinbrook housing estate in Dunmurry, Nr Belfast.
Sapper Stuart was driving a green Morris van marked "Four Square Laundry" - a non-existent company.
A member of the Women's Royal Army Corps was posing as a delivery girl.
Speculation that he was serving with the Special Air Servive was denied.
http://www.palacebarracksmemorialgarden.org/Royal Engineers.htm
Correctamundo! Lives WERE lost; IIRC a WRAC soldier was also killed but it was along time ago. Wasn't the laundry van ambushed?
 
#12
rickshaw-major said:
Bonzo_Dog said:
taffplod said:
Think the Sappers were in on this in the early 70s
The guy who was killed on that op was RE

Sapper Edward Stuart. Aged 20

2nd October 1972 - Belfast - Sapper Ted Stuart
Sapper Ted Stuart was in plain clothes posing as a laundry man; he was machine-gunned to his death in his van by two Provisional
gunmen on the Twinbrook housing estate in Dunmurry, Nr Belfast.
Sapper Stuart was driving a green Morris van marked "Four Square Laundry" - a non-existent company.
A member of the Women's Royal Army Corps was posing as a delivery girl.
Speculation that he was serving with the Special Air Servive was denied.
http://www.palacebarracksmemorialgarden.org/Royal Engineers.htm
Correctamundo! Lives WERE lost; IIRC a WRAC soldier was also killed but it was along time ago. Wasn't the laundry van ambushed?
I think she survived by hiding in a house and got the MM for her troubles - first WRAC MM according to my Peter Taylor book.
 

BrunoNoMedals

LE
Kit Reviewer
#13
Please note this Army led activity was wayback in the early 1970's and is commonly known as Four Square Laundry. A quick check on Google will find Ricks article is far from a good account.

Did the British Army have the scientific knowledge and skilled staff to really obtain intelligence, let alone evidence in this method? I doubt it and how the 'Laundry' came to a bloody end is ignored, plus the intelligence conflict with the Provisional IRA.

The author should do better.

Posted by: uksceptic at October 13, 2008 3:57 PM
Yes, you do have to wonder how such a backwards country lacking in innovation, with Armed Forces who are inexperienced and poorly trained, managed such a feat.

W*nker.
 
#16
This rings bells...

But the name "4square"? Wee bit of a wah there methinks.
 
#17
The Four Square matter may well hit the press shortly,for unexpected reasons.Sapper Edward Stuart-Good and Brave man.RIP
 
#18
read a book or article re this...wasnt it a part of 14 intillegence......not sure if they are still in existance now...there again is there much army left in the North now??
 
#20
one-flew-over said:
rickshaw-major said:
Bonzo_Dog said:
taffplod said:
Think the Sappers were in on this in the early 70s
The guy who was killed on that op was RE

Sapper Edward Stuart. Aged 20

2nd October 1972 - Belfast - Sapper Ted Stuart
Sapper Ted Stuart was in plain clothes posing as a laundry man; he was machine-gunned to his death in his van by two Provisional
gunmen on the Twinbrook housing estate in Dunmurry, Nr Belfast.
Sapper Stuart was driving a green Morris van marked "Four Square Laundry" - a non-existent company.
A member of the Women's Royal Army Corps was posing as a delivery girl.
Speculation that he was serving with the Special Air Servive was denied.
http://www.palacebarracksmemorialgarden.org/Royal Engineers.htm
Correctamundo! Lives WERE lost; IIRC a WRAC soldier was also killed but it was along time ago. Wasn't the laundry van ambushed?
I think she survived by hiding in a house and got the MM for her troubles - first WRAC MM according to my Peter Taylor book.
Probably Lcpl S. J. Warke WRAC Provost. I think she did a little more than hide in the house.
 

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