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News ::
Dual-Use Weapons and A New Strategy of Urban Warfare. (english)
19 Feb 2003
The morality of non-lethal strategies.
All “conduct unbecoming an officer and a gentleman . . . and to bring discredit upon the armed forces . . . shall be punished as a court marshal may direct.” – Uniform Code of Military Justice [UCMJ], Articles 133 and 134.

As we get closer to war with Iraq, the same public outcry as last time is coming to the fore. The supporters of this latest campaign repeat: “Don’t protest the war! It hurts the morale of our soldiers!” Now how do they know this? Sure, the protest of a war may hurt (as Israeli military evidence suggests) the dumber soldiers, but so does their abandonment when they face difficult ethical decisions. Under these circumstances, they aren’t allowed to proclaim “contemptuous language” while on duty [UCMJ, Article 88]. Yes, it is worthy of a court marshal. And yes, both an ethical purpose and some upstanding national character are essential to maintaining the morale of our soldiers.
But what makes this new Iraqi invasion really different is that it will most probably occur in an urban environment with a hand-to-hand combat. The United Nations predicts that if this war comes to full fruition, there will “initially” be upwards of 500,000 civilian casualties. Then we’ll have to wrestle with the mental image (the Pentagon won’t allow photos to be taken) of our soldiers standing in the middle of a massive heap of dead women and children and wondering: “What the hell just happened?”

Not to Worry!
In 1997, the Joint Non-Lethal Weapons [NLW] Directive was established by the Department of Defense [DoD]. This was a program that invents weaponry which doesn’t kill, but merely “mildly injures disagreeing crowds.” As one contractor put it: “[These weapons] have all the desirable effects of landmines, but are incapacitating without producing irreversible damage and are easy maintenance.” Another company replied that NLW’s offer “a comfortable thought in the intensive care setting.” But when Deputy Secretary of Defense Donald Atwood heard of the DoD’s Directive 3000.3, he wondered about the wisdom of such weapons. The directive stated: “Non-lethal weapons shall not be required to have a zero probability of producing fatalities or permanent injuries.” As a result, Mr. Atwood replied: “non-lethality is a misnomer.”
Some of the NLW’s proposed to being used in Iraq are:
CALMATIVES, such as Fentanyl, Valium or “Roofies” (the “date-rape drug”) will be sprayed on urban crowds to “gently lend sedation.” Fentanyl was recently used in that rebel-held theater in Chechnya and killed 20% of the occupants. Fearing their use, Iraq has recently tried to procure an antidote to these pharmaceuticals, but was disallowed to do so by the U.S.-led embargo. The Pentagon not long ago told the BBC: “There are no projects or research [by the government] into calmatives.” That is true in a manner of speaking. They are being “outsourced” to private contractors at Penn State.
GRAPHITE THREADS were dropped in Somalia by F117-A Stealth Fighters to incapacitate electrical power grids. Such particles also scar lung tissue. Nonetheless, it promises to halt “non-traditional, asymmetric conflicts with a progressive response and a graduated manner.” The Pentagon promises to use this weapon in Iraq to ensure “the protection of the oil fields.”
PULSE ENERGY PROJECTILES cause bowel spasms or make people feel as though they are on fire. The contractor says this “full–dimensional protection apparatus for area denial against intellectually-challenged persons” affords “a kinder, gentler offensive force.”
RADIO FREQUENCY WEAPONS operate in the 20 to 35 kHz area and cause bones to either vibrate or explode. First developed in France over 25 years ago, this “rheostatic” weapon moved “Naked Lunch” author William Burroughs to ask Led Zeppelin if they would consider using such a device to make crowds “feel different rhythms than they can hear.” Robert Plant replied: “Er, we never thought of that.” The Pentagon refers to this “tunable quality device” as the “apocryphal blowing of the trumpets as in the Book of Joshua.”
PEPPER SPRAY: The safety of this “enforced common frame of reference” is insured because the government’s Chemical Warfare Services tested it on 4,000 servicemen. Promised to “make the mentally deranged smell bad with exceptional success,” canisters are now offered to local police through block grants and come in key-chain or stand-alone models. However, the Association of Chief Police Officers recently noted that the “correct use of 5% spray have been regularly breached by officers.” Nonetheless, the manufacturer promises that “you’ll be delighted by our low cost!”
GENETICALLY ENGINEERED ANTI-MATERIAL AGENTS fabricated at the Office of Naval Research are being “designed for the targeted deterioration of concrete, metal, asphalt, paint and plastic.” Now how will the military control their spread throughout our ecology?
VEILING-GLARE LASER DAZZLERS are a “repression technology” designed by the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Agency and the National Institute of Justice to blind crowds “for hopefully a short time.” These vehicle-mounted weapons drive through a neighborhood and cause the population to become visually impaired with “a reduced likelihood of long term injury.”
SHORT-PULSE ELECTRICAL CURRENTS turn off vehicles, computers and life-support systems in an entire neighborhood.

Supporting our Troops
While the full use of NLW’s in Iraq aren’t assured, it is highly probable. So supporting the morale of our troops requires the citizens to end any use of illegal weapons so to prevent the guilt our military will most definitely suffer from. Mind you, soldiers who use these implements of war might either be tried on “Article 8 (2) (b) (iv) on War Crimes of Excessive, Incidental Injury, or Damage” or the Constitution’s mandate to “punish offenses against the Law of Nations.” Either that, or none of our valiant soldiers will ever be thought of as heroes or heroines again.
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