The United States is developing new weapons, violating its international obligations
America’s coming military campaign against Iraq definitely has the goal gaining possession of Iraqi oil. There are other objectives as well. America needs to test its new weapons. The military and technological advantage of the United States needs to continue to grow. Iraq will be the best testing ground. America’s defense department is doing its best to invent more lethal toys that will bring as much good as possible during another war in the Gulf.
The Pentagon is conducting secret research to develop and test new kinds of non-lethal chemical weapons. This was reported by Jan van Aken, the head of Germany-based Sunshine Project. According to Mr. Aken, it is not ruled out that the new weapons might be used for the first time in Baghdad.
Van Aken pointed out that the new weapons will not kill the enemy, but it will cause soldiers to fall asleep. However, there is the possibility of these substances killing human beings or disabling them. A special division of the non-lethal weapon administration of the US Defense Ministry deals with the development of the new chemical weapons.
Sunshine Project believes that the USA deliberately violates the International Convention for Prohibition of Chemical Weapons. Another serious infringement of the US is the way that these weapons will be used. The chemical is supposed to be packed in mines. All the projects connected with the development of the new weapons are top secret. The Pentagon realizes that this is a serious violation of American international obligations.
Another priority weapon in Iraq is allegedly called "Excalibur." This is another kind of a “smart weapon” that is controlled via a Global Positioning System. The error margin of such shells is no more than ten meters. The current error margin is 300 meters. Therefore, it will take only three of these shells to demolish a bridge, whereas it would take 150 of the old shells used to accomplish the same.
The Excalibur's range is more than 50 kilometers. Military units can use this shell from behind mountains or other natural obstacles. Excalibur is currently being developed. These new shells will be added to the US military's arsenal in 2006. The only drawback of the new shell is its price. One shell will reportedly cost up to $25 thousand.
The American defense department also wishes to accelerate the development of a launcher that for the multiple launch of guided missiles. This launcher with a range of 50 kilometers will be installed on an armored caterpillar-type vehicle. The price is a constraining factor. This project has already gone beyond the scope of the budget.
The US Defense Department is also spending much money on nanotechnology research (atomic-level technologies). More than $200 million were assigned for such research in 2003 ($180 in 2002, $123 in 2001, and $70 in 2000). For the time being, nanotechnologies are used by the US Navy. There are currently various directions of this research. Nanoelectronics deals with the reduction of size and weight of electronic devices. Nanomaterial technology develops materials of unique capacities. There is also bionanotechnology: combining the capacities of a living cell and those of an artificial device.
Egor Belous PRAVDA.Ru
Translated by Dmitry Sudakov