Indict these men for war crimes!
US forces fired depleted uranium (DU) weapons at civilian areas and troops in Iraq in breach of official advice meant to prevent unnecessary suffering in conflicts…
Coordinates revealing where US jets and tanks fired nearly 10,000 DU rounds in Iraq during the war in 2003 have been obtained by the Dutch peace group Pax. This is the first time that any US DU firing coordinates have been released, despite previous requests by the United Nations Environment Programme and the Iraqi government.
According to PAX’s report, which is due to be published this week, the data shows that many of the DU rounds were fired in or near populated areas of Iraq, including As Samawah, Nasiriyah and Basrah. At least 1,500 rounds were also aimed at troops, the group says.
This conflicts with legal advice from the US Air Force in 1975 suggesting that DU weapons should only be used against hard targets like tanks and armoured vehicles, the report says. This advice, designed to comply with international law by minimising deaths and injuries to urban populations and troops, was largely ignored by US forces…
A six-page memo…from USAF’s Office of the Judge Advocate General concluded in March 1975 that DU weapons were legal. But it recommended imposing restrictions on how they were used.
“Use of this munition solely against personnel is prohibited if alternative weapons are available,” the memo stated. This was for legal reasons “related to the prohibitions against unnecessary suffering and poison“.
The memo also pointed out that DU weapons were “incendiary” and could have indiscriminate impacts in urban areas. “They may cause fires which spread thereby causing potential risks of disproportionate injury to civilians or damage to civilian objects,” it said. “Precautions to avoid or minimise such risks shall be taken in the use of this weapon or alternate available weapons should be used…”
The Democratic congressman, Jim McDermott, is now urging the US Department of Defence to publish all its DU firing coordinates. “These weapons have had terrible health ramifications for Iraqi civilians,” he said. “The least the US could do is provide the specific targeting data so the Iraqi government can begin the complex clean-up process.”
The US Department of Defence did not respond to a request to comment. One military source was “amazed” that the Dutch government had released sensitive targeting data.
Uranium is a pyrophoric metal – meaning that once ignited it burns to radioactive dust and ash. Like the lies the world was told about United States use of napalm, carpet-bombing and Agent Orange in VietNam – our governments since the invasion have lied and tried to hide our use of radioactive weapons on the soldiers and civilians of Iraq.
Uranium burns until it is consumed. The Pentagon and their political pimps deserve the same fate.