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Kapow! Israeli army emulates Troy Hurtubise?

News reports (in the Israeli newspaper Globes, in the NANOJV defense intelligence blog, and elsewhere) say that on Wednesday, December 22, Israel’s army is going to test a new tank-defense system by firing live anti-tank missiles at a tank that contains two of its own soldiers. (Thanks to investigator Yossi Levi for bringing this to our attention.)

If these reports are accurate, the army will be emulating the confidence-indicating, confidence-inspiring testing methods pioneered by Troy Hurtubise. Troy spent years building and personally testing a suit of armor that he hoped would protect him against grizzly bears. In many of the tests, Troy, wearing the suit, subjected himself to colorfully sudden, violent impacts. The video here, a snippet from the documentary film Project Grizzly, shows a few of those tests. Troy was awarded an Ig Nobel Prize in 1998 in the field of Safety Engineering.

UPDATE: Haaretz reports (on December 20) “The missile in the exercise will not carry a warhead, so if the system fails, it could strike the tank but there will be no blast and no injury to the crew.”

FURTHER UPDATE: The Jerusalem Post reports (on December 20): “IDF nixes live anti-tank missile test after complaints. Under pressure from bereaved families, the IDF on Sunday announced that a planned live anti-tank missile test against a Merkava tank with soldiers inside, would be held with a nonlethal warhead.”

BONUS: Some of the many further adventures of Troy.

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