Monday, May 11, 2009

Seems Wrong

In Afghanistan there’s a human rights group that’s investigating the possibility that white phosphorus was used in a recent skirmish because of the burns that were found on some of the local villagers. According to the army spokesman in Afghanistan, US forces that were involved denied being the culprits, suggesting that it was the Taliban fighters instead because they’re know to have used it in the past. A Taliban spokesman couldn’t be reached for comment.

White phosphorus is used to illuminate targets, create smoke, or as a direct weapon because of its spontaneous combustibility. Its use is deemed legitimate under international law but human rights organizations have a problem because it indiscriminately burn civilians when employed in populated areas.

Since there were so many villager casualties in the battle in question it is under investigation and the group, Human Rights Watch, has petitioned NATO to release the findings. They are also working to get white phosphorus use banded.

Does anybody else see this as beyond odd or is it just me? I hate war but I’m not naïve. I know there will always be one going on somewhere in the world. I understand how many treaties have been signed in the past to cut down on collateral atrocities because outright war is bad enough. But I’m wondering. If these people have the power to do this sort of thing why not outlaw all forms of weaponry that can kill or maim anyone? Why can’t they arrange instead to have one huge thumb wrestling competition or some such thing?


Regina Carlysle said...

Nope. An out and out outlawing of weapons will never happen but it's a wonderful thought. Of course, without any means of protection the 'bad guys' win every time. It's sad and futile.

Mia Watts said...

And the bad guys maintain the fighting chance (going off Reg's comment).

It's horrible what people will do to one another. How we can be desensitized by melted flesh... when does that happen? When does that become okay? There will always be the casualties that get in the way of a cause.

Keep hating it. It's the only way to effect awareness and change

Anny Cook said...

Wouldn't that be a wonderful thing? I think even if they had weapons, that they should have to fight one on one... That would cut down the body count.

Sandra Cox said...

That's horrible!