As the female suicide bombing in Diyala the other day demonstrates, the more Iraqi government and security forces take charge and the US takes a back seat to counterinsurgency, the emphasis on offense is going to increasingly shift to defense.
Some folks I met at the Modern Day Marine Expo last week have an interesting system called "Counter Bomber" that uses radar and some wiz bang algorithms to detect if someone is concealing a suicide vest under his clothing.
Here's a short video that explains how the system works...
Counter Bomber costs about $300K, and that includes a computer and software that gives a no-joke "Marine proof" indication of whether someone's hiding something or not. A chime sounds if the radar detects a signature (it basically can pick up metallic objects under clothing) and gives a green-for-safe or red-for-threat indicator as the person passes the Counter Bomber's radar. The system works up to about 150 meters and the designers say it's best to have a couple arrayed so security officers can get a 360-degree view of what the person might be hiding.
Company reps say there are 12 Counter Bombers fielded to Marines in combat: eight systems are fielded in Iraq, including al Asad air base and the busy entrance to Ramadi on route Michigan, and four are stationed in Afghanistan.