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Senators, Marines haggle over video system

June 4, 2008 at 10:07 AM

WASHINGTON, June 4 (UPI) -- Two U.S. senators have accused the Marine Corps of failing to get behind a new video surveillance technology they say could be protecting soldiers in Iraq.

Sens. Kit Bond, R-Mo., and Joseph Biden, D-Del., say the four-year effort to develop and deploy the Tactical Concealed Video System has been hampered by Marine Corps officials despite its potential to keep soldiers safer from roadside bombs, USA Today reported Wednesday.

Biden contends Marines in the field want surveillance system to be tested, but officials with the Marine Corps Systems Command say the technology doesn't work.

"Our operating forces have told us explicitly that this system does not meet their performance expectations," Col. Phillip Chudoba, the command's program manager for intelligence systems, told USA Today. "It does not function as it was intended to function. It does not yield the results that they expected."

The newspaper said the system uses cameras and motion detectors, sometimes hidden in fake rocks, to watch roadside areas that can't be seen by airborne drones.

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