Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?
The Military United States Technology

US Deploys 'Heat-Ray' In Afghanistan 406

Koreantoast writes "The United States military has deployed Raytheon's newly developed Active Denial System (ADS), a millimeter-wave, 'non-lethal' heat-ray, to Afghanistan. The weapon generates a 'burning sensation' that is supposedly harmless, with the military claiming that the chance of injury is at less than 0.1%; numerous volunteers including reporters over the last several years have experienced its effects during various trials and demonstrations. While US military spokesperson Lt. Col. John Dorrian states that the weapon has not yet been operationally used, the tense situation in theater will ensure its usage soon enough. Proponents of ADS believe the system may help limit civilian deaths in counterinsurgency operations and provide new, safer ways to disperse crowds and control riots, but opponents fear that the system's long-term effects are not fully known and that the device may even be used for torture. Regardless, if ADS is successful in the field, we'll probably see this mobile microwave at your next local protest or riot."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

US Deploys 'Heat-Ray' In Afghanistan

Comments Filter:
  • Yes, but... (Score:5, Funny)

    by Morphine007 ( 207082 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @09:10AM (#32936356)
    ... is the defrost setting any good?
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      ... is the defrost setting any good?

      To hell with that how's the popcorn setting?

    • by TapeCutter ( 624760 ) * on Saturday July 17, 2010 @12:19PM (#32937320) Journal
      Does it go "ding" when the crowd is dispersed?
  • That active denial system sounds eerily like the thermal discouragement beam...

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yFRbGppLaUI [youtube.com]

    FoOd fOr ThOUghT.

    • It would have sounded even more familiar if it was called Active Internal Denial System...

    • by Svartalf ( 2997 )

      Heh... That thermal discouragement beam sounds more like a high-power laser...

    • by FatdogHaiku ( 978357 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @11:36AM (#32937040)
      Either way, smoke 'em if you got 'em in your sights. I wonder what would happen if people at a protest suddenly come up with a large supply of sheet aluminum... you know, like stop signs etc... parabolic dish shapes might also be interesting.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      I bet it works really well against cameras and communications equipment carried by journalists. Possibly better than it would work against actual people.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by rtb61 ( 674572 )

        Interesting point, as a line of sight area weapon with highly limited targeted ability, is it appropriate to torture innocent people in the background because you are targeted people in the foreground. Will it be child abuse when children are tortured by burning pain.

        So a device that inflicts extreme pain and suffering, with no record of who it is aimed at and for what reason and all neatly wrapped up in it doesn't directly cause 'permanent harm' as such tough luck for collateral victims sitting quietly

    • by mangu ( 126918 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @10:49AM (#32936806)

      There's a missing ingredient in that recipe: a grain of salt. For instance, it says there that this "protects against most RF and EMF based attacks, including: ... Dielectric heating which causes cataracts". WTF? How can it protect your eyes, unless you wrap your head with the treated cloth?

      Protection against unwanted electromagnetic fields is a technology called electromagnetic compatibility [wikipedia.org]. Unless you know what you are doing and use complex test equipment, results may not be what you expect.

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Given that the guide also mentions nerve control and implants, I'm going to have to put its credibility around the foil hat level.

      (Honestly, instinct says cotton shirt + iron filings + microwaves = OH GOD MY SHIRT IS ON FIRE)

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Arancaytar ( 966377 )

      The page looks well-written, but sentences like "It probably shields against remote activation of implants" make me kind of suspicious.

      Fortunately, they seem to be giving good advice: "Covering yourself with tinfoil or Mylar, for example, is a great way to get noticed and stereotyped. [...] There are situations where it’s appropriate to bring others’ attention to the stalking-related events in your life. However, if you link every incident to a vast conspiracy against you, you’ll be percei

  • What? (Score:5, Funny)

    by WrongSizeGlass ( 838941 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @09:12AM (#32936364)
    That miserable desert wasn't hot enough that they had to throw in a 'heat ray'?
  • by cybereal ( 621599 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @09:13AM (#32936366) Homepage

    I'm a bit concerned about how this might interact with my tinfoil hat... and cod piece!

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      Tin foil hats will have to be outlawed, like bulletproof vests.

      Only criminals need tinfoil hats. You ain't no CRIMINAL, is you?

      • by Marcika ( 1003625 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @04:01PM (#32938524)

        Tin foil hats will have to be outlawed, like bulletproof vests.

        Only criminals need tinfoil hats. You ain't no CRIMINAL, is you?

        You might mean it as a joke, but the Germans are a step ahead of you here -- anything that can serve to protect you against police violence in a protest has already been outlawed for the last twenty years as a "protective weapon" (the law is 17a of the Versammlungsgesetz).

        They have outlawed padded clothing that protects against beatings, mouthguards that protect against police knocking your teeth out, masks that protect against teargas and ballistic vests that make it harder to maim you from a distance. Outlawing tin foil hats is the logical next step.

  • Isn't it kind of a big jump to go from "weapon of war" to "local cops can afford this?" I don't think the VA Beach or Norfolk police can afford much of anything that Raytheon sells. Of course, neither article mentions the price of this thing, but the general rule is "if you have to ask, you can't afford it." Of course, its not like Posse Comitatus means anything anymore, so maybe they'll just get a unit from the local military base to come out for the day and "adivse" them with it.

  • Very troubling (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Ancient_Hacker ( 751168 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @09:19AM (#32936400)

    It's been known for over fifty years that microwaves, at just a few milliwatts per square centimeter, cause cataracts. That's why there are rather tight limits on microwave exposure around radar and telecom equipment.

    Spraying microwaves around and possibly inducing mass blindness is not going to look good in the history books.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by hedwards ( 940851 )
      Actually, if that happens there would be grounds for war crimes trials. Blinding the enemy is definitely a war crime. But then again, it's not like the US is really big on prosecuting their own war criminals, except when it's convenient.
      • Re:Very troubling (Score:5, Informative)

        by couchslug ( 175151 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @09:42AM (#32936502)

        "Blinding the enemy is definitely a war crime."

        NO. Using weapons to specifically blind the enemy is a crime.
        If you blind them with fragments or fire as a consequence of trying to kill and maim them, that's perfectly acceptable.

        If you blind a tank crewman whose head is exposed by painting the tank with a laser designator in order to shoot the tank that's perfectly acceptable.

        If you use a weapon whose specific purpose is to blind an enemy rather than blinding some of them as collateral damage, that's a crime.


        "Protocol on Blinding Laser Weapons (Protocol IV to the 1980 Convention), 13 October 1995

        Article 1 It is prohibited to employ laser weapons specifically designed, as their sole combat function or as one of their combat functions, to cause permanent blindness to unenhanced vision, that is to the naked eye or to the eye with corrective eyesight devices. The High Contracting Parties shall not transfer such weapons to any State or non-State entity.

        Article 2 In the employment of laser systems, the High Contracting Parties shall take all feasible precautions to avoid the incidence of permanent blindness to unenhanced vision. Such precautions shall include training of their armed forces and other practical measures.

        Article 3 Blinding as an incidental or collateral effect of the legitimate military employment of laser systems, including laser systems used against optical equipment, is not covered by the prohibition of this Protocol.

        Article 4 For the purpose of this protocol "permanent blindness" means irreversible and uncorrectable loss of vision which is seriously disabling with no prospect of recovery. Serious disability is equivalent to visual acuity of less than 20/200 Snellen measured using both eyes."

        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by hedwards ( 940851 )
          Um, you do realize that I was right, your quote even reinforces that notion. The weapon system in question hasn't been tested to the standard required by article 2, as testing is definitely a requirement for feasible precautions to be taken. And without it there's no realistic way of knowing at what point it becomes unreasonably dangerous.
          • Re:Very troubling (Score:5, Insightful)

            by xigxag ( 167441 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @11:38AM (#32937044)

            What are you talking about? The weapon system HAS been tested, TFA points out it's "already been tested more than 11,000 times on around 700 volunteers." And there's nothing in article 2 requiring testing anyway. As much as you would like to apply common sense definitions to legal documents, it doesn't work. Furthermore, cataracts do not fall under the definition of "permanent blindness" in the protocol. Cataract surgery is a common outpatient procedure and can certainly restore one's sight to better than 20/200 corrected. Finally, as the previous poster was saying, even if there were some slight possibility of permanent blindness, that itself is not a war crime. Bullets can cause permanent blindness too, btw, as can mines, mortars, and almost anything on the battlefield, up to and including a blow on the head with a rock. If the worst thing a weapon has going for it is that it may, in some limited circumstances, cause cataracts, it would be one of the safest weapons ever devised.

            So, in short, you're wrong. You have not demonstrated in any way that the use of this weapon could be classified as a war crime.

            • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

              A couple of points I'd like to point out.

              1. It was tested, under controlled conditions, by experienced engineers who only turned the thing on long enough to test it. What happens when you get some sadistic grunt on the trigger who just holds the fire button down?

              2. Cataract surgery is out patient in areas with the tech and for people with the money for it. What about in some town in Iraq or Afghanistan, or the back waters of Louisiana, where they don't even have indoor plumbing?

              That said I think all yo
        • Re:Very troubling (Score:5, Insightful)

          by Ancient_Hacker ( 751168 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @10:33AM (#32936724)

          The "Protocol on Laser Weapons" has nothing to do with this issue.

          The weapon under discussion is not a laser. The wavelength it emits is at least a thousand times longer. It comes out of a waveguide, not out of a optical lens.

          • Re:Very troubling (Score:4, Informative)

            by Hurricane78 ( 562437 ) <deleted@slashdoA ... inus threevowels> on Saturday July 17, 2010 @01:57PM (#32937864)

            The wavelength is completely irrelevant for the question if it is a laser. A laser does not have to be in the optical or IR range. A laser is defined as a spatially coherent, narrow, low-divergence beam of electromagnetic waves. (If it’s matter, it’s a maser. There can also be others.)

            So a spatially coherent, narrow, low-divergence beam of microwaves, is indeed a laser.

            • Re:Very troubling (Score:5, Informative)

              by thegarbz ( 1787294 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @06:51PM (#32939612)
              No it's a MASER: "Microwave Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation" [wikipedia.org]

              It pre-dates the LASER, and is different in only one letter of the acronym LASER by the word "Light" rather than "Microwave". Researches seem to have thought it relevant to denote the difference between optical and non optical radiation so don't go screwing with the accepted definitions.

              But the topic is moot really since this is nothing more than a microwave generator, based on the story shown on Discovery last year. Not everything coming out of a horn antenna is spatially coherent, so unless you can provide a source saying that this is indeed a spatially coherent beam created by stimulated emission of radiation, it is nether a LASER or a MASER.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by DaveWick79 ( 939388 )

      As opposed to bullets, which have been known to cause death. Seems fair enough. Cataracts vs. death?

      • by Eudial ( 590661 )

        Actually, no. International law is funny that way.

      • by bsDaemon ( 87307 )

        In much the same way that soldiers have to shoot full metal jacket ball ammo, even in pistols, against enemy soldiers, whereas civilian cops carry hollowpoints, typically in rounds with much higher ballistic properties (.40s&w or .357Sig are comperable to .357 magnum, but in a shorter round. MUCH more powerful than 9mm). Basically, if a state trooper shoots you, you're less likely to survive than if a soldier shoots you.

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by apoc.famine ( 621563 )
          Did you even think about what you typed before you hit 'submit'? State Police will put 9 rounds into you, maximum. Soldiers will put that many in a burst, and you might get a couple bursts.

          If you take a single shot from a state policeman's sidearm, and a single shot from a soldier's sidearm, I would agree with you. But many soldiers are behind SAWs like the BAR, or are looking down the barrel of an M2.

          I don't give a shit what the ammo is made of - if it's got some metal in it, and is coming at me at 4,
      • False choice (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Joce640k ( 829181 )

        This won't be used in situations where they want to cause death.

  • Failure rate? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by mangu ( 126918 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @09:22AM (#32936408)

    FTFA: "the US military says the chance of injury from the system is 0.1%. It's already been tested more than 11,000 times"

    So, there has already been eleven injuries from that?

    • Re:Failure rate? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Luckyo ( 1726890 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @02:33PM (#32938058)

      The argument here is similar to that of taser - that you would injure more people by not having this tool and having to disperse crowd in other ways (i.e. tear gas, water cannons, possible gunfire).

      Of course, the problem is that it ends up being used to solve problems it wasn't initially designed for, such as torturing without leaving marks, just like taser did.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by thegarbz ( 1787294 )

        The argument here is similar to that of taser - that you would injure more people by not having this tool and having to disperse crowd in other ways (i.e. tear gas, water cannons, possible gunfire).

        I agree with the crowd bit, but tasers are not used to disperse crowds, and tasers also do not reduce injury in a sense because they are situationally quite different. Here in Australia where they have only recently introduced tasers there are already talks of having them banned. When people get given a safe weapon they don't think twice before using it. A quick google search will show case after case of police tasing children. Would they have pulled out their guns and shot them?

        When people stop thinking

  • Bah. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by blind biker ( 1066130 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @09:28AM (#32936442) Journal

    Rather than high-tech indiscriminate non-lethal weapons, the US should invest much more in intelligence gathering and infiltration. Which is difficult, but just because slapping a shiny new weapon into the battlefield is easier, doesn't mean it's better.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Alef ( 605149 )
      Shiny new weapons have the distinct advantage that the guys holding the purse can look at and touch what they have paid for once it has been built. It is usually much harder to raise funds for "soft" work, I guess both for the psychological reason that it's not as easy to put a mental value into something that is abstract, but also for the very practical reason that it's harder for the buyers to verify that they actually got what they were promised.
    • Re:Bah. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by couchslug ( 175151 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @09:50AM (#32936542)

      It's not a binary choice.

      An investment in intel won't necessarily stop riots, especially riots calculated to provoke violent retaliation without regard to own-side casualties. Less-lethal weapons won't produce bloody martyr cell phone footage. :) Smart opponents want martyrs, especially when the martyrs aren't their own operative and are just expendable locals they may not care for anyway or actively dislike.

      Intel isn't something you can (always) buy. though that IS a good idea if done carefully.

      • Re:Bah. (Score:5, Insightful)

        by blind biker ( 1066130 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @10:18AM (#32936656) Journal

        It's not a binary choice.

        An investment in intel won't necessarily stop riots, especially riots calculated to provoke violent retaliation without regard to own-side casualties. Less-lethal weapons won't produce bloody martyr cell phone footage. :) Smart opponents want martyrs, especially when the martyrs aren't their own operative and are just expendable locals they may not care for anyway or actively dislike.

        Intel isn't something you can (always) buy. though that IS a good idea if done carefully.

        While I agree with most of your points (good post), I am personally of the opinion that good intelligence would ALSO impede those kinds of riots you talk about, if not immediately then in the long run, by eliminating the ringleaders of the Taliban, which would incite those riots. Using the microwave weapon to quell the riots, even though non-lethal, will cause resentment as much as a few dead rioters would. Totally IMHO.

      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        by sub67 ( 979309 )

        An investment in intel won't necessarily stop riots

        This is why I support AMD.

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by arielCo ( 995647 )
      Cue military-industrial complex theorists in 3, 2, 1..
  • by AHuxley ( 892839 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @09:34AM (#32936470) Journal
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QSMyY3_dmrM [youtube.com]
    Long Range Acoustic Device (LRAD) used in Pittsburgh.
    Expect the heat-ray very soon.
  • by andywebsdale ( 715221 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @09:35AM (#32936474)

    The cops or soldiers that use them will work out how to make the weapon have far worse effects than were intended.They *always* do.
      For example, trapping fleeing civilians against a wall or fence so that they can't esape, or more than one beam focussed on one person. (Incidentally, one technique with plastic bullets or baton rounds is to ricochet them off the street, so that they shatter and rebound up into the victims face)
    Like tasers, they say that they're a 'non-lethal' alternative to guns, but in reality they still use guns the same as they always did, but now use tasers when they would just have grabbed someone & handcuffed them, or just spoke to them.

    • by cavePrisoner ( 1184997 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @02:26PM (#32938012)
      As a soldier, I have to say that making the thing do more damage was the last thing that came to mind. We have plenty of things that do shit-tons of damage already. But when we catch an 8 year old running command wire to an IED, you kind of wish there was a way to stop him without ripping him in half with a .50 cal round. Something like this might be nice from time to time.
  • Question.... (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward
    I don't really know anything about microwave physics...or any kind of wave physics, but would holding a metal sheet in front of you (either flat or curved) be effective in dispersing the energy directed towards the crowd/enemy, or maybe even direct it back towards the operator of the device?
  • by MalHavoc ( 590724 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @09:40AM (#32936496)
    The 'burning sensation' was developed and extensively tested based on the US military's prior experience in the Red Light district of Amsterdam and Eddie Murphy's stand up comedy.
  • Telling name (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Robotron23 ( 832528 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @09:44AM (#32936514)

    The abbreviation, which could mean any number of things, is telling of the military habit to name destructive, harmful things with innocuous sounding phrases that do not imply damage "Active Denial System" could just as easily have been a web term or a feature of an antivirus program. Imagine a TV ad: "Norton's Active-Denial-System or ADS is proven to..." This is shared by government which will often use formal, even flowery language to cover up a practice which is morally or ethically contentious:

    For instance, a military spokeman or officer or a high-up politician cannot very well come out and say this without coming off badly from it: "We believe that as we kill off our opponents in the Taliban a number of civilian casualties are necessary to allow our victory."

    Therefore you get pretentious, padded-out diction like this: "We concede that the Taliban are a formidable foe who possess a humanitarian record that we can only describe as deplorable. However if we are to restore and preserve the freedoms of the Afghan people, and we think you'd agree with us on this, that a certain number of hazards for those present in the field are bound up in these transitional times are justified in the context of the achievement of the coalition's greater goals: We're in the sphere of granting those formerly under oppression a life of liberty, free of oppression and terrorism."

    This sort of puffed out prose is a long-time euphemism which has only proliferated over the 100 and more years - masses of Latin words lengthen a point, and those who do listen can't be bothered digging out the true meaning which was basically that civilian deaths can't be avoided and are actually needed for the coalition to win. The end justifies the means. But in our hypothetical wording up there this was disguised: The great enemy of clear writing is insincerity. A well-known author named George Orwell wrote much on this and his essays are recommended.

  • Reminds me of Dune. "I hold at your neck the gom jabbar."

    • by __aaxtnf2500 ( 812667 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @09:59AM (#32936578)
      Ever felt one of those sensory illusion devices that has a stack of parallel tubes with alternating hot and cold lines? The hot lines are not enough to burn you, but when you put your skin across the stack, your heat sensing system interprets the feeling as intense burning. Closest thing I ever felt to the black box.
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        Was there are old lady administering the test? Did she have a little needle at your neck?

        On a related note, having any weird dreams lately?

    • by PolygamousRanchKid ( 1290638 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @10:53AM (#32936820)

      Actually, I think this weapon, oh sorry, device might have a frightening psychological effect on folk who can't really comprehend what the thing is doing. They know about guns that shoot bullets. But this thing didn't shoot anything, but they're suddenly feeling uncomfortably hot.

      "Yo, they're using black magic! Is that allowed by the Geneva Conventions?"

      Remember, when the first US troops arrived in Afghanistan, the Afghanis thought that mirrored sunglasses had X-ray vision, so that the soldiers could peep at their wives. Even if the local Taliban leader has a microwave oven at home and tries to explain:

      "Do no worry! It is harmless! It is just like my microwave oven here . . . oh, um . . . "

  • Horrible (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Voulnet ( 1630793 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @09:50AM (#32936544)
    This is totally horrible.

    Just like tasers, this will give nincompoops of military the freedom to hurt civilians and innocent people on the grounds that it won't 'harm' or 'kill' them.
    It just gives them more incentive to be trigger happy against the civilians because the aggressors (read: military or police personnel) won't fear consequences of being court martialed for murder and there will be less public outcry against 'harmless' methods of crowd control.

    This is just an alternative to the golden military rule: "Double check your fucking target", turning it into "Shoot your fucking target, if it happens to be the wrong one, just apologize".
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Eudial ( 590661 )

      Instances like this [metro.co.uk] really paint a nice picture of how ridiculous the use of "non-lethal" weapons have gotten.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Voulnet ( 1630793 )
        Great, now high school dropouts can test it against all sorts of wheel-chair ridden Afghani people, they can also use it against veiled Afghani women so they can see how fast the veil burns. Yes, I'm not kidding, you all know the fools of military will be having some fun with it against innocent people under the excuse of crowd control, where a crowd might be less than 20 people lining up for bread.
  • Umm... .1%? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by wonkavader ( 605434 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @10:01AM (#32936588)

    That means you point it at 1000 people and one of them will be injured. In what way? Skin burns or toasted cerebral cortex?

    If some over-aggressive soldier leaves it on too long, does that make the number .2% or 10%?

    How long do we have to point it at people to change that to 100%? 1000 times too long or just a few seconds too much?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday July 17, 2010 @10:05AM (#32936598)

    This is why I prefer the M-60 machine gun. After firing a few thousand rounds of 7.62mm NATO down the street, all you need to clean up is a firehose.

  • by DaveGod ( 703167 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @10:08AM (#32936616)

    The "safer" a weapon is, the less the restrictions and controls over it's use, and the more often it is used.

    As we have seen with tasers, people begin to see them as a tool which achieves their objective with minimal repercussions. There follows a normalisation process resulting in usage becoming considered appropriate even in situations where other forms of violence would be considered unacceptable. Like when trying to stop a student making a scene as he is leaving the premises as requested. Tasers were touted as a less violent option to bullets, instead they seem to be used as a more violent option to wrestling (and, if you go by Youtube, talking).

    Even if the technology is 100% safe and cannot result in permanent injury, it is still the exercise of pain and violence in controlling civilians and must be very tightly controlled. Instead there seems to be very little interest in the misapplication of violence by officials if nobody dies.

    Seriously, making people feel like they are on fire in order to "disperse crowds"?

  • by PPH ( 736903 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @10:18AM (#32936648)

    ... in Afghanistan they smile and wave as you drive by. Then they whip out their cell phones and trigger the IED. How's your heat ray against that?

    If this is just an excuse to see if a new gizmo works by harassing a few villagers with it, it'll make an excellent recruiting tool for the Taliban.

  • And so it goes.... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by macraig ( 621737 ) <mark@a@craig.gmail@com> on Saturday July 17, 2010 @10:28AM (#32936700)

    And so the use of force to perpetrate democracy, freedom, and capitalism continues unabated, it seems. Brought to you by the same group of people responsible for the fair-minded genius of ACTA.

  • As With Tazers (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Greyfox ( 87712 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @10:47AM (#32936794) Homepage Journal
    Where people might be hesitant to use lethal force due to the consequences, I suspect that they'll be all to willing to use "non-lethal" weapons as soon as things start to look remotely ugly. Or possibly for no reason at all. It's a lot harder to prove that an incident occurred if it doesn't leave bodies behind. Of course, they'll know their actions are wrong and will attempt to make it illegal to record incidents where the weapon is used, much as police departments are trying to prevent recordings of officers now so that there will be no documented proof of police brutality.
  • I knew it would prove essential someday!
  • Yep. I'm sure feeling a bit of heat is really going to work on a Taliban fellow who grew up in a desert. When guys like that are picking a fight, there are two things they understand: dead and not dead. If not dead, keep fighting.

  • Awesome! (Score:3, Funny)

    by Quiet_Desperation ( 858215 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @11:47AM (#32937098)
    The Agonizer! Please tell me the project manager looked like Leonard Nimoy with a beard.
  • Corner reflectors (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Ernesto Alvarez ( 750678 ) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @11:51AM (#32937132) Homepage Journal

    The ADS being an EM emitter, I wonder what would happen if the demonstrators decided to carry corner reflectors [wikipedia.org] with them.

What this country needs is a good five cent ANYTHING!