Country: United States of America
Delegate Name: Nanda Murali
Improvised explosive devices threaten the safety of civilians across the world. Whether they are made with gunpowder, hydrogen peroxide, or fertilizer, IEDs are created for the sole purpose of destruction. The danger in their existence is their constant ambiguity – they can be homemade and kept hidden, made with vastly unpredictable materials. It is difficult to know what IED to expect. To combat this, explosive ordnance disposal operators have been deployed to detect and disarm (render it safe, or RSP) the devices. Within the United Nations, extensive efforts in this sector have been done, the3 most significant of which is the 1997 creation of the UN Mine Action Service (UNMAS). The service works to eliminate the threats of mines and other explosive remnants of war, coordinating UN mine action and leading operational responses.
The United States believes strongly in the importance of personal freedom. However, it is also no stranger to IED attacks. In recent years, the emergence of terrorism and domestic violence has prompted a shift in American policymaking and opinions on the regulation of weapons.
The 1995 Oklahoma City bombing involved an IED with ammonium nitrate fertilizer, nitromethane, and stolen commercial explosives. It was detonated next to the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building, killing 168 people. The Columbine High School massacre of 1999 used large propane bombs placed in the school cafeteria, along with Molotov cocktails, pipe bombs, and two car bombs to attack first responders and news reporters. However, the propane and car bombs failed to detonate, preventing the deaths of hundreds of more civilians. In January 2011, a shaped pipe bomb was detected and defused before it harmed anyone, intended to cause destruction at a Martin Luther King Jr. memorial march in the state of Washington. In April 2013, two bombs were detonated close to the finish line of the annual Boston marathon race, and the FBI response indicated suspicion of pressure cooker bombs. The most recent attacks, the September 2016 attacks of Manhattan and New Jersey, solidified national concerns over the issue. Along with the United States, the military forces and law enforcement from Canada, the United Kingdom, Israel, India, and Spain are at the forefront of counter-IED efforts.
The United States of America urges that the General Assembly recognize that traditional arms and weapons regulations will not be effective in the issue of improvised explosive devices. Instead, any resolution passed should include these eight steps: (1) increasing domestic and international engagement, (2) effectively exploiting information and materials from IED attacks, (3) advancing our intelligence and information analysis, (4) maintaining our deployable counter-IED resources, (5) screening, detecting, and protecting our people, facilities, transportation systems, critical infrastructure, as well as the flow of legitimate commerce, (6) safeguarding explosives and select precursor materials, (7) coordinating and standardizing training and equipment, and (8) enhancing our operational planning. The United States strongly endorses the movement of these proposals in the Disarmament and Security Committee. By emphasizing these factors, the threat of IED attacks can properly be mitigated and the lives of millions of global citizens can remain protected.