The Internets Secret Black Market Arms Flea Market
Gizmondo has an interesting article up about a murky website called The Armory. Its an off shoot of The Silk Road. For those of you that dont know, the Silk Road is basically craigslist but for drugs. You can get anything from oxycotton to herion, buy, sell, or trade style anywhere in the world.
The Armory is for unlicensed firearms and munition sales. The author of the article did some research and signed up for an anonymous account. With it he posted an ad stating that he needed to equip 20 hard-legs for a paramilitary type operation. The responses he got back were interesting.
This is one:
“ what about something full auto easy to conceal?
-H&K MP5K-PDW, i will get 16 pieces in two weeks.
Something less “lady style”?
-H&K G3A3, 15 pieces in 2 week.
-AK47, 28 pieces in 10 days.
-H&K PSG1 civilian model, 5 pieces in 2 weeks.
Something sharp but cheaper?
-Dragunov SVD, 12 pieces in 10 days
Take your time and make your choice Sir, we’re here to serve you.”
This is not to be confused with gun-broker, auction arms, gun-list and other normal gun sites where dealers and buyers make legal transactions. The Armory sells unlicenced full auto weapons, MANPADS (such as Stinger SAMs), RPGs, and anything else that the market is looking for. The only thing that matters is the cash.
The Armory doesn’t have a snazzy and easy to find URL. Its hidden, changes its location on the web every few minutes, and is only accessible through TOR which is a nightmare of domain hopping confusion. Odds are its servers are registered in some country that ends in “Stan” and even if the ATF, FBI, CIA etc were chasing them down, they probably are not your easy to find guys.
All transactions are in Bitcoins, that oddball internet only currency that is a haven for cutting edge money laundering and instant untraceable funds transfers outside of a banking channel. The conversion factor is steep. 450 Bitcoins is 4,140 USD. So the AR-15 pictured here costs over $4000.
Of course conspiracy theorists would say that it could all just be a big sting operation ran by one of the above alphabet soups, Nigerian con artists, or just a bunch of Walter Middy type clowns goofing on each other. Either way, if you ask me, its probably more real than not.
But I dont really aim to find out…..