How to Disable an MRAP for Less than $50

May 11, 2015   |   Justin King

(TFC) Washington DC — Police and military vehicles are stolen from time to time. Should a citizen be in a community where a military vehicle is stolen, it would be wise to understand how civilian populations throughout history have disabled military vehicles in the past. This article has absolutely nothing to do with the recent trend of police departments deploying armored vehicles against people exercising their Constitutionally-protected rights. Perhaps the reader travels overseas and a military crackdown erupts while they are drinking Pina Coladas on the beach. The point is that this information should never be used against US law enforcement. That would be a violation of the social contract and you might end up in jail.

Most Americans are familiar with the Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicle because their local police department obtained one to look cool. Due to familiarity, this will be the vehicle used as an example. The same tactics will work against almost all other armored vehicles.

Note: The parameters for this article are simple: The reader does not possess a great deal of tactical experience and has no access to firearms, high explosives, homemade explosives, or chemical weapons.

Prior to engaging an armored vehicle, it is important to understand what, exactly, you are dealing with, once the intimidation factor is stripped away. It’s really just a heavy passenger vehicle that is designed to move people from one location to the next, while protecting them with armor. That’s it. While these vehicles do have some offensive capabilities, like gun ports (holes to stick a weapon through and fire at a crowd), or even a mounted machine gun or grenade launcher, their primary mission is to move people. Defeating an MRAP is as simple as destroying its ability to move and protect its occupants at the same time.

The tactics discussed in the article will be limited to relatively low-impact methods. Obviously the most effective method of stopping an MRAP is deploying a shaped charge. I think the new terminology is Explosively Formed Penetrator. However, if you’re reading this article, you (probably) don’t have the technical expertise to safely use this method.

Destroying an armored vehicle’s ability to move or protect its occupants does not necessarily mean destroying the vehicle. When encountering an armored vehicle on foot with no heavy weapons, the reader has adopted an unconventional warfare stance. It would be best to think unconventionally.

Stopping movement by obscuring vision:

While the outside of an MRAP varies greatly from a normal car, sitting in the driver’s seat is fairly similar to driving a U-Haul truck. The driver looks over the steering wheel and through the windshield to the street. If the driver cannot see past the windshield, the vehicle ceases to move because it either crashes or the driver stops it.

Any sticky liquid substance that can be pumped into water balloons or packed into a glass container will stop an MRAP. If the balloon bursts or the glass container breaks open on the windows, the driver is forced to stop and the occupants are forced to exit the vehicle to clean off the windshield. The effect is enhanced if three different types of substances are mixed: a sticky liquid to obscure vision and defeat the windshield wipers and sprayers, a thin liquid to increase the splatter from the impact, and a granular substance to further obscure vision.

Examples:

Combination one: Syrup, milk, and sugar (Warning: Container not to be left around diabetics, small children, or people who bake)
Combination two: Heavy weight motor oil, lighter fluid, and aluminum or magnesium flakes (Warning: Extremely flammable)
Combination three: Elmer’s glue and glitter (Warning: Possibly too fabulous for many people)

The person that is in fear for their life from the threat of the armored vehicle is only limited by their imagination in this case. Latex paint and honey have also been used as base liquids in the past with success. While these may seem silly or too simple to work, I challenge anyone to try it on their own vehicle. The glitter isn’t a joke either; it reflects light which further obscures vision.

Historical note: The first armored troop transports that were deployed in large numbers were open on the top. When German troops deployed the “halftrack” in urban areas, resistance fighters would drop Molotov cocktails or hot tar from rooftops. While modern armored vehicles are closed on top, an elevated position can still be used to deliver vision obscuring material.

Stopping movement by stopping the engine:

Most modern armored vehicles have air intakes for the engine that are armored and have multiple grates to protect the engine from rifle fire. This presents another unique method of stopping the vehicle: clogging the air intake. The safest method is using spray foam insulation which can be sprayed at the vehicle from a relatively safe distance. Without air, the engine will either cease to run or will overheat. Some have suggested simply clogging the exhaust. However, the location of the exhaust makes anyone willing to stick a banana in the tail pipe of an MRAP much braver than I am because they are exposed to the gun ports, and are literally inches from the back door.

Stopping movement by pit or tip:

Both of these methods require prior planning and a rudimentary understanding of funneling tactics (the process of sending your opposition down the route that you want them to go).

“Tank pits” are highly-effective against all forms of armored vehicles. It is exactly what it sounds like: a pit dug in the intended path of the vehicle that is deep enough to put the vehicle at an angle that it can’t maneuver out of. The pit is covered by plywood and camouflaged to match the surrounding area. A pit for an MRAP would need to be about four feet deep, about six feet long, and as wide as it can be made across the intended path.

“Tipping” an armored vehicle uses the same principle of placing it in a situation that it can’t drive away from, but instead of using a prepared trap it utilizes the existing landscape. It’s a little bit of a misnomer because it doesn’t actually require the vehicle to tip over. Examples would be roads that have extremely weak bridges. A typical MRAP weighs in at about 36,000lbs with occupants. Removal of warning signs about the load capacity of the bridge can aid in this tactic. Other options are forcing the vehicle down a route that ends in an area too narrow to turn around. Alternatively, in urban areas, Egyptian dissidents lead armored cars down alleys and then ducked through side alleyways too small for the vehicle to move through. While the occupants were wondering whether or not to pursue on foot, a stolen bulldozer was placed at the entrance to the alley. Stolen bulldozers have also been used to flip armored vehicles down hills after impacting them from the side.

Using Flame:

The ubiquitous Molotov cocktail has two purposes when dealing with armored vehicles. The first is to obscure vision. Fire is very hard to see through. A true Molotov cocktail will burn for some time; and, if the flame is just below the windows, the driver will be unable to see and likely panic because well… fire is scary. The second purpose is to force the occupants out of the vehicle. Contrary to popular belief and what is often portrayed in movies, the best location for the flame is on the wheel wells and running boards of the vehicle, not the roof. Heat rises. A Molotov cocktail that is burning on the roof of an armored vehicle may not even be noticed by the occupants. However, one that is heating up the metal around them and the floor underneath them will be noticed very quickly and will cause them to exit the vehicle.  Molotov cocktails also tend to interfere with the advanced optics on tanks. “Heat seeking” optics don’t react well to a flame burning in front of the sensor.

Concluding remarks: It is important to understand what a Molotov cocktail will not do. It will not “blow up” an armored vehicle. The set of circumstances required for an explosion to occur is so unlikely that it isn’t worth spending time addressing. It will not injure the occupants in most instances. There is an extremely rare, but worth mentioning, set of circumstances that has occurred in which insurgents threw several Molotovs at an armored car and for whatever reason the fluid did not light. Instead, it simply soaked the vehicle. The fumes from the flammable material seeped into the cabin through the gun ports and when a functioning cocktail hit the vehicle later it ignited all of the remaining fluid. The fumes inside the vehicle also ignited in a fireball, severely injuring the occupants.

None of the methods or tactics described above included the use of high explosives, firearms, or anti-tank weapons. Using those tools, the vulnerabilities of armored vehicles are exponentially increased. Unshielded coolant lines, hydraulic lines, and air brake canisters make the MRAP good for one thing and one thing alone: protecting troops in combat from Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs). It’s not even great at that. It is not a good raid vehicle. It is not a good vehicle for crackdowns.

The MRAP is a perfect case study in perceived capability vs actual capability. The perceived capability of the massive armored vehicle is that it can withstand anything. The actual capability of the vehicle is that it can be disabled by a kindergartner’s art supplies. Rest assured that no matter what banana republic you happen to be in, if the government orders a military crackdown or begins enforcing a police state, you can defeat their armored vehicles. Keep in mind, we never even discussed the ways to sabotage the vehicle while it’s parked overnight.

Note: This information provided for educational and entertainment purposes only. Please do not try this at home.


This article (How to disable an MRAP for less than $50) originally appeared on The Fifth Column and was used with permission. Tune in! The Anti-Media radio show airs Monday through Friday @ 11pm Eastern/8pm Pacific. Help us fix our typos: edits@theantimedia.org.

Author: Justin King

Justin King joined Anti-Media as an independent journalist in July of 2014. His topics of interest include activism, human rights, international relations, and military affairs. Born in Japan, he currently resides in the United States.

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75 Comments

  1. I think we need to support our police and not figure out ways to harm them ! the real enemies are the ones you seen on TV in Baltimore rioting looting and burning stuff… those are the people you should be afraid of and those are the people the police are protecting you from or trying to and all this white liberal guilt makes me sick you are what you are be proud of it !

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  2. yeah cops need tanks and military weapons to protect people….. you mean enslave people. no need for cops to have tanks.

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  3. This is common sense to most people today, to be able to think fast or at all when a armored military vehicle is coming at you, with a one of our enemy's driving it, AND WE HAVE A LOT OF ENEMY'S ,like al qaeda, Russia, China,North Korea, Ect, Ect, Ect, lets face it our Leaders have made the HOLE WORLD HATE US, we should know how to help our family and Friends survive in a situation like this, The coward police will run and hide to take their uniform's off FAST, Because they will be treated just like the Nazi SS was in World War 2,

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  4. I'm pretty sure nobody is talking about hurting cops. We just like to know how to stop tanks, cops don't need tanks to write tickets or take reports.

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  5. I dont think its smart myself as a webdeveloper to put this information on facebook . As it is commen knoledge that the cia fbi nsa and other unspoken orginizations watch face book and monitor these thing's . Unless this is a trap . to lore in anarkist minded people to track them. just sayen .

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  6. YOU ARE A FOOL IF YOU SUPPORT A POLICE STATE! THIS IS NOT ABOUT BEING PROUD OF WHO YOU ARE…HUMAN LIVES ARE BEING WASTED BY GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS THAT ARE SUPPOSED TO PROTECT AND SERVE NOT PROTECT AND SHOOT YOU IN THE BACK SO EITHER YOU ARE COMPLETELY BLIND OR YOU ARE A RACIST PRICK…

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  7. My last pay check was $9500 working 12 hours a week online. My sisters friend has been averaging 15k for months now and she works about 20 hours a week. I can't believe how easy it was once I tried it out. This is what I do…

    T­r­a­c­k-R­e­p­o­r­t.c­o­mAOL

    PLEASE REMOVE THE AOL

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  8. It's a discussion on how to disable MRAP, a defensive weapon, heavily armored, and treated as heavy mobile. Why the police need such a device is beyond me.

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  9. did you check out, "Catcher in the Rye"? feeling bad? you're now being watched.

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  10. Everyone of us who just clicked on this page signed up to be monitored by the NSA lol Welcome to the "black" list.

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  11. Sorry, been on the list since before the NSA figured out how to use Facebook.

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  12. Tim Owens aint it the truth. We are given the illusion of "free" speech and still need to watch what we say or speak against for fear of paying a price for our freedoms smh.

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  13. How did this not get shutdown by our beneficent federal overlords, at the NSA. But seriously that guys who runs up on the mrap has balls no matter who is in it. I would say the time its not troops of police in it is the most dangerous time you encounter aan mrap

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  14. Enough molotovs will cause occupants to suffocate unless they have their own air supply, yes, I mean the band. I think pumpkin pies on the windshield is a great idea, probably the best idea. No damage, no injury.

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  15. This is child's play material. If this is what gets you on tge nsa watch list than they need to find something better to do with their time. Although these ideas would be effective against 1 mrap I doubt that glue and glitter will be adequate Defense/offense against a convoy.

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  16. Who? The police? They were the ones burning things and instigating riots. They were caught red handed on camera pretending to be protesters. Your tv lies to you my friend. The news crews work for the government. Please research before you speak otherwise you'll come across as a fool in this group.

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  17. Seve dlugosz thermite isn' jet fuel. Thermite is a combination of iron oxide and aluminum powder ignited by a magnesium alloy or other combustible materials such as potassium permanganate And glycerol. Etc. Etc. plus thermite is better suited for stationary targets or penetrating steel/joining steel. So. Unless you plan on dumping a large pile on an immobilized mrap thermite would be useless for achieving the goal this thread set out to inform you about.

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  18. Cody Weeks You completely missed the point. Commercial airliners don't carry thermite and yet the steel beams burned for days after 9/11…

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  19. And getting the crew out of a MRAP will fix all your problems will it? Not that any of these are likely to work. A tank trap? No armored crew would ever spot that, and diggin one in the street is super easy and the best use of resources. Get that from a WWI viva la resistance manual?

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  20. He made the asinine comment. Not me. Why is he comparing 9/11 jet fuel issue to a comment about thermite? All I did is correct his misinformation. Sorry for making an educated observation on an off the subject comment.

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  21. Because this article is abso-fucking-lutely retarded. Good luck getting me to stop my vehicle just because I can't see, that's what I have a TC for. Try any of this on a STRYKER, none of it will work. Nor will lighting the running boards do anything. The truck may feel a little hotter on the inside, but it's nothing we can't handle. And finally, getting the engine to overheat will take far longer than you want it to even if we get stuck in a 'tank pit' as described above. What will we do if we get stuck? Call for reinforcements to clear the area and pull us out.

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  22. Garrett Douglas Houser is that what you tell all the vets that suffered from ied attacks? your confidence is ignorance.

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  23. Garrett Douglas Houser is that what you tell all the vets that suffered from ied attacks? Your arrogance is ignorance.

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  24. Hal Morton
    Lesson
    Thermite
    Steal beams with rust (and a but load of other things) Iron oxide
    Aluminum Pop cans refrigerators ext
    ignition Magnesium in landing gear.

    Anfo on site
    Plant fertilizer
    Jet flue

    Mind you I do think it was a set up I want to know why the only landing gear found was almost 10 years later and in GOOD condition?
    2 black boxes per plane (NONE Recoverd)

    Cell phones working??? There is a thing called a fairday cage on the planes the same ting is called a lightning shield ( ALL HAVE THEM of that size)
    NO PERSON saw the planes with there own eyes only video of it (ever see green screen work) (Think weather reports LIVE)

    Investigator was the same person who drafted a drill in December that matched almost to the letter.
    Tower 7 untouched but that is where the EOC was located at (and lost there budget)

    I like the Ideas posted there I am a big fan of home made paint grenades filled with A/B foam but now I will have to try it with Crafters herpes AKA gliter

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  25. The Hole world hate us? Dude, get a grip, put the keyboard down and step away from the computer before you fall into the whole hole!

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  26. you mean after freezing them! I don't think a slingshot will propel anything very far that has a skin that has been pierced like that and is full of liquid!

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  27. Kirby Buchanan educate me will you please ? Sounds like something worth learning about. What is Tor ?

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  28. Let me help you out here buddy. His comment was sarcasm. He was referring to the fact the official report and the CG simulations used to support it, all state that jet fuel was the cause of the support beam failures. Anyone who has bothered to research the matter, knows that the beams where cut with thermite, and the compound used, is US patented and own by a US demolitions company. Sarcasm bud, sarcasm. . .

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  29. Let me help you out here buddy. His comment was sarcasm. He was referring to the fact the official report and the CG simulations used to support it, all state that jet fuel was the cause of the support beam failures. Anyone who has bothered to research the matter, knows that the beams where cut with thermite, and the compound used, is US patented and own by a US demolitions company. Sarcasm bud, sarcasm. . .

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  30. Small hole in shell to drain membrane, fill with liquid goodness (sticky/flammable) Never seen a water balloon slingshot? 3-man team launching them over 50 yards? Can sling molotovs with same mobile setup. ;)

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  31. Hal Morton where exactly in the article was 9/11 conspiracy theories mentioned? Think you replied on the wrong thread.

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  32. Timothy Myer i thought america was the land of the free oh wait sorry thats new zealalnd

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  33. Seve Dlugosz If you're talking 9/11 you are so right you DON'T need to melt the beams in order to bring down a building like that. All you need to do is hit the building with a quarter million pound airliner moving at lets say 400 miles per hour. I'll guaranty you that a huge number of steel beams in those buildings disappeared in an instant, on IMPACT. The next thing that happens is tons of jet fuel, along with carpeting, office furnishings, copier chemicals, hydraulic fluid from the airliner, human fresh, tires, wall paper, wood, and only God knows what else heats up the remaining beams, not to the melting point that you refer to but only hot enough so as to WEAKEN the remaining beams to the point that they can no longer support the millions of pounds of structure above them, and down comes the entire building. So you're right, jet doesn't need to MELT the beams in order bring down a building. Irv.

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  34. Timothy Myer well in that case the wrote this article extremely nice :p…i laughed so hard on inside :p we all know who they really mean :p and the blacklist is the list of heroes ;p so put me on there :p

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  35. Timothy Myer well in that case the wrote this article extremely nice :p…i laughed so hard on inside :p we all know who they really mean :p and the blacklist is the list of heroes ;p so put me on there :p

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  36. "people exercising their Constitutionally-protected rights. " Citizens DO NOT have the right to VIOLENT RIOTS, burning building, LOOTING or destroying police vehicles !

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  37. and the more likes you get the bigger the target you are!! ohh shit

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  38. I read it just out of curiosity, but yeah, I'm sure the powers that be are now looking at me for sure now.

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  39. NSA put it up to see who would click on it to learn to make glitter bombs…and get added to the list lmao

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  40. Garrett Douglas Houser
    Because reinforcements are endless and will not face the same difficulties?

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  41. Garrett Douglas Houser
    Because reinforcements are endless and will not face the same difficulties?

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  42. Apparently they don't have rights to peaceful protests either. Oh wait, the government's power is an illusion and authority is a lie.

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  43. Garrett Douglas Houser Are you suggesting that you'd be attacking civilians? Think hard before you become "the enemy".

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