Iraqi Gunmen Dressing Up in American Military Uniforms
I’ve previously written about how official uniforms are inherent authentication tokens, even though they shouldn’t be (see also this and this for some less deadly anecdotes).
Now we see this tactic being used in Baghdad:
The armored sport utility vehicles whisked into a government compound in the city of Karbala with speed and urgency, the way most Americans and foreign dignitaries travel along Iraq’s treacherous roads these days.
Iraqi guards at checkpoints waved them through Saturday afternoon because the men wore what appeared to be legitimate U.S. military uniforms and badges, and drove cars commonly used by foreigners, the provincial governor said.
Once inside, however, the men unleashed one of the deadliest and most brazen ambushes of U.S. forces in a secure, official area. Five American service members were killed in a hail of grenades and gunfire in a breach of security that Iraqi officials called unprecedented.
Uniforms are no substitute for real authentication. They’re just too easy to steal or forge.