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Secret 'Heat Wave' Gun Ready for Iraq Next Year

by gobacktotexas Sun Nov 18th, 2007 at 03:11:13 PM EST

The United States could unveil 'heat wave' gun which functions by causing the subject's molecules to 'vibrate violently' next year for crowd control in Iraq.  

Cross-posted on DailyKos
From the UK's Telegraph.  

American commanders in Iraq are urging Pentagon chiefs to authorise the deployment of newly-developed heat wave guns to disperse angry crowds or violent rioters.

Here's how the gun works:

The heatwave weapon can, by contrast, target troublemakers from 750 metres. It works by dispatching high-powered radio waves from a vehicle antenna, similar to a satellite television dish, causing the molecules in a target's skin to vibrate violently, creating a burning sensation.

"We are pretty good at shouting and intimidating people and we have been perfecting the art of lethal warfare since Cain and Abel," he said. "But in places like Iraq we are re-learning that we need a response in the spectrum between shouting and shooting. The ADS [Active Denial System]provides this."

There are also pictures and more information here along with this quote:

"It would be very useful technology in the field in Iraq," said Airman Hudspeth, who has witnessed the need for better ways to control angry and threatening crowds during two tours there.

I think this is a great idea.   Not only would this device be useful in Iraq, but imagine how effective it could be in controlling unruly crowds here.  Remember the WTO protests or George Bush's inauguration? George Bush would have seemed much more popular to these people when the alternative would have been having uncontrollably vibrating skin molecules, just as Democracy will seem much more popular to the people in Iraq when this is the alternative.  

And hopefully a smaller version hand-held version could be developed as well for police to use against suspects and teachers to discipline unrully students.    

Should governments be able to use heat-ray guns to disperse crowds?
. Yes 9%
. No 90%
. Unsure 0%

Votes: 11
Results | Other Polls
Snark aside, this device strikes me as fundamentally undemocratic.  Imagine your least favorite totalitarian regime, and then imagine them with this weapon.     Would Milosevic have fallen if he could have dispersed the angry crowds that surrounded parliament?  Would Sarkozy be able to simply 'zap' the protesters against his policies?  Throughout history, part of the process of ending popular regimes has been through manifestation of discontent by people taking to the streets in mass.  This device could bring all of that to an end.    
by gobacktotexas (dickcheneyfanclub@gmail.com) on Sun Nov 18th, 2007 at 03:15:21 PM EST
Hmmm...bring on the tin foil suits, I think....

"The future is already here -- it's just not very evenly distributed" William Gibson
by ChrisCook (cojockathotmaildotcom) on Sun Nov 18th, 2007 at 03:40:09 PM EST
This doesn't make a bit of sense.  Crowd control has never been the problem in Iraq.  Car bombs, that's a problem.  Roadside bombs, that's another one.  Crowds of angry rioters?  Not so much.  Except for Ashura and a few other religious holidays, people pretty much know better than to form crowds.  Crowds get blown up.
by the stormy present (stormypresent aaaaaaat gmail etc) on Sun Nov 18th, 2007 at 03:46:17 PM EST

In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes
by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Sun Nov 18th, 2007 at 03:50:39 PM EST
I don't think so. The one you linked to is an acoustic weapon, which I'm guessing gets at the tiny bones in your ear which act as sensors used for balance control. This one burns your skin with RF energy at 95 GHz causing unbearable pain, but as it "only burns to a depth of 0.5mm at low power" it is considered to be harmless. Turn up the power enough, though, and you can cook a person just like anything else in the microwave (maybe not this exact device, but something more along the lines of your microwave which runs at an efficient frequency for boiling water).

you are the media you consume.

by MillMan (millguy at gmail) on Mon Nov 19th, 2007 at 02:04:37 AM EST
[ Parent ]
They're hardly secret

is just one  video out of several

Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.

by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Sun Nov 18th, 2007 at 03:53:48 PM EST
Could we please gut the Pentagon now?  Please?  Take the budget, and hand out all the money to the soldiers.  Keep the nukes up to snuff, but shut the rest down.

Be nice to America. Or we'll bring democracy to your country.
by Drew J Jones (pedobear@pennstatefootball.com) on Sun Nov 18th, 2007 at 05:22:18 PM EST
Metal reflects microwaves.  And yes there is a tabletop torture style device.
by Lasthorseman on Sun Nov 18th, 2007 at 09:54:48 PM EST
Better fry people than fire live ammunition on rioters, which is what the Swedish police used to do (as they used to not to be allowed to use tear gas, water cannons or rubber bullets).

Peak oil is not an energy crisis. It is a liquid fuel crisis.
by Starvid on Wed Nov 21st, 2007 at 12:52:42 AM EST

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