Saturday, June 18, 2005

They found WMD in Iraq! The U.S. military had them.

I don't know about this blogging business. I think maybe I'm a little too in touch now with the real world, after reading on Charles Norman Todd's blog Freiheit und Wissen (German for "freedom and knowledge") that the U.S. has used weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. No, they didn't drop the Bomb on Iraq, but they have used depleted uranium, white phosphorus ammunitions and a reformulated napalm made from jet fuel instead of gasoline.
Did I really need to know that? Well, yeah, for the greater good, it's useful when such information trickles down to my level. But did I need to know that the U.S. lied to the British about the use of napalm, as reported in The Independent yesterday? I'm already disturbed about the duplicity exposed by the Downing Street Memo (exposed to me, anyway, even if everyone else knew about the duplicity), and now I learn about more duplicity. Whose idea was this glasnost anyway? I think I'd prefer to be numb and happy.

Oddly enough, the use of the napalm-like MK-77 firebomb was reported in the San Diego Union-Tribune on August 5, 2003. (I read the article on Global Security.org.) The article explains

During the war, Pentagon spokesmen disputed reports that napalm was being used, saying the Pentagon's stockpile had been destroyed two years ago.

Apparently the spokesmen were drawing a distinction between the terms "firebomb" and "napalm." If reporters had asked about firebombs, officials said yesterday they would have confirmed their use.

Yesterday's article in The Independent states that the U.S. confirmed to Adam Ingram, Britain's Defense Minister, in January 2005 that MK-77s had not been used. Did the American military officials not know about the Union-Tribune article in 2003? Were they betting that no one would remember it?

More did-I-need-to-know-that: Todd writes on Freiheit und Wissen that "such incendiaries [depleted uranium, white phosphorus ammunitions, and napalm] have been prohibited by the 1980 Protocol III of the Geneva Convention—a protocol which the U.S. has refused to ratify to this day, despite general international agreement."

I recalled the line "I love the smell of napalm in the morning" from the Coppola film Apocalypse Now and did a search for "napalm smells like." Aside from the numerous results stating that napalm smells like "victory," one person in an online forum said it smelled "fruity" and another in a blog comment wrote that it "smells like vanilla-caramel scented gasoline."

The Union-Tribune article quoted Col. James Alles, who commanded Marine Air Group 11 during the war, as saying "The generals love napalm. It has a big psychological effect." Was he just ironically referencing the movie? Or do they—

4 comments:

marshmellow_parade said...

Here's something fishy- For the longest time on Rollingstone.com if you typed in Bruce Springsteen or R.E.M. and hit search a huge ad for the U.S. Army would pop up and block the whole damn screen. I don't know if it's still doing it or not but why the hell on the lefties? They've probably changed it now where it pops up for everyone to make it seem more universal to promote a death march for a rock magazine.

John said...

What kind of idiot thinks napalm and DU are WMD?

John said...

John,

Freiheit und Wissen's Charles Norman Todd (whose blog post I linked to) defines WMD: "D.U., white phosphorus, and the new generation of napalm all constitute weapons of mass destruction – weapons whose effects cannot be made precise, whose impact covers a wide area, and in the case of D.U., will remain for generations after the conflict is over."

Wikipedia's definition: "Weapons of mass destruction (WMD) generally include nuclear, biological, chemical and, increasingly, radiological weapons." (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wmd)

franky said...

Don well said