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US using white phosphorous in Iraq?

AmnerisAmneris Posts: 15,117Registered Users
OK this is disturbing - I wasn't sure if to post it here or the non-hair discussion, so I hope some people read it here....

I heard yesterday on CBC news that the US troops in Iraq may have been using white phosphorous in chemical attacks against the so-called "insurgents" (how does that word make any sense when these are people defending their own land? but anyway) in Fallujah.

White phosphorous is a chemical used to light up targets and so on, but when used against humans, it literally melts flesh off the bones in a horrible death. Though technically only used against troops, it inevitably also burned many civilians. There were 2 Marines talking about all the women, children and babies they saw die.

Technically, white phosphorous isn't banned by any treaties the US signed, but it is a chemical and so morally falls into the category of chemical warfare. As one analyst said, if the US claims to take the high road in this war, they should not be using it.

What burns me is that this war was ostensibly started because Saddam had illegal weapons, which we have yet to find, and now the US is using immoral and technically illegal weapons. And while the US is complaining about suicide bombers, look at what they are doing. I am horrified.
Get used to me. Black, confident, cocky; my name, not yours; my religion, not yours; my goals, my own; get used to me. -Muhammad Ali


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Comments

  • CherishCherish Posts: 1,847Registered Users
    Amneris wrote:
    OK this is disturbing - I wasn't sure if to post it here or the non-hair discussion, so I hope some people read it here....

    I heard yesterday on CBC news that the US troops in Iraq may have been using white phosphorous in chemical attacks against the so-called "insurgents" (how does that word make any sense when these are people defending their own land? but anyway) in Fallujah.

    White phosphorous is a chemical used to light up targets and so on, but when used against humans, it literally melts flesh off the bones in a horrible death. Though technically only used against troops, it inevitably also burned many civilians. There were 2 Marines talking about all the women, children and babies they saw die.

    Technically, white phosphorous isn't banned by any treaties the US signed, but it is a chemical and so morally falls into the category of chemical warfare. As one analyst said, if the US claims to take the high road in this war, they should not be using it.

    What burns me is that this war was ostensibly started because Saddam had illegal weapons, which we have yet to find, and now the US is using immoral and technically illegal weapons. And while the US is complaining about suicide bombers, look at what they are doing. I am horrified.

    How is it technically illegal, based on what you wrote? You've said they signed no treaties that ban its use, so essentially, they are free to use it. As far as I know, the US govt has never said they don't or won't use chemical weapons.

    You bring morality into it... but.... other than the puritanical, pious and obviously repressed attitudes in this country, and the "do as I say and not as I do" raging hypocrisy, which morals are you referring to?

    It's horrifying, but not shocking to me - this is what goes on in war, as much as people want to talk about heros and such, this IS the reality.
  • roseannadanaroseannadana Posts: 5,632Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    Cherish wrote:
    As far as I know, the US govt has never said they don't or won't use chemical weapons.

    From the linked article:
    But America is a signatory to the Chemical Weapons Convention, which it ratified in 1997, and that agreement forbids the use of any substance to kill or harm either soldiers or civilians if it is being used mostly for its toxicity.

    The question is if you believe what the US administration is saying now. At first, they denied even using the chemical as an incendiary device. But now that they've been presented with evidence, they've admitted using it in Fallujah.

    There is more at the article linked below. /home/leaving?target=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.timesonline.co.uk%2Farticle%2F0%2C%2C7374-1875057%2C00.html" class="Popup

    I was born to be a pessimist. My blood type is B Negative.
  • CherishCherish Posts: 1,847Registered Users
    Cherish wrote:
    As far as I know, the US govt has never said they don't or won't use chemical weapons.

    From the linked article:
    But America is a signatory to the Chemical Weapons Convention, which it ratified in 1997, and that agreement forbids the use of any substance to kill or harm either soldiers or civilians if it is being used mostly for its toxicity.

    The part I bolded is gobbledygook, and can be interpreted or argued in a number of ways.

    This is more meaningful (from your link):
    After an embarrassing denial yesterday by the new US Ambassador to Britain, Robert Tuttle, that white phosphorus had been used in Iraq, a Pentagon spokesman confirmed its use but said that it was not a banned weapon.

    "White phosphorus is a conventional weapon. It is not a chemical weapon," said the spokesman, Lieutenant-Colonel Barry Venable. "They are not outlawed or illegal.

    .....

    Protocol III of the UN's 1980 Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons expressly forbids the use of white phosphorus against civilian targets or military targets in civilian areas. The United States has not signed up to that protocol, although Britain has.

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