I read an article a while back at Defense Tech, called G.I. JAILERS’ STUN GUNS. Here’s an excerpt:

So maybe it’s appropriate to revist an issue Defense Tech first examined almost 18 months ago: U.S. soldiers’ use of Taser electrical weapons to put down unruly prisoners in Iraq.

Since then, there have been momentary glances at how G.I.s policing Iraqi jails are using their stun guns and other non-lethal arms. But a new report from the UK’s University of Bradford gives the most complete picture I’ve seen yet on how U.S. troops are employing these weapons.

It’s an interesting article that delves into how the military police attempt maintain crowd control in Iraqi prisons (and elsewhere), and what kind of non-lethal uses of force are effective, or are humane. Apparently the Pentagon is sensitive to criticism on this issue, and are attempting to stifle and conteract negative media reporting. But they are at a loss on how to control bloggers. How interesting.

Over lunch on the first day of the conference a representative from the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defence for Public Affairs discussed strategies to counteract critical viewpoints of the non-lethal weapons programme in the media. She encouraged those present to keep repeating a positive message particularly when there was a negative story published, and not to shy away from commenting. If there was negative coverage about an important programme that could be derailed by the general public or congress then they would ‘really go after them’, she said. She indicated that officials would give increased information access to ‘bread and butter military journalists’ as opposed to the ‘60 minutes type journalists’ in return for more positive coverage. She also advocated a strategy of targeting military analysts working for various news media and getting them on message. She admitted, however, that they ‘still don’t know how to handle the bloggers’. emphasis mine
Defense Tech

Read more to get some background on the Joint Non-Lethal Weapons Program, and the The Bradford Non-Lethal Weapons Research Project.

Joint Non-Lethal Weapons Program Mission Statement

The Joint Non-Lethal Weapons Program (JNLWP) was established to provide warfighters a family of Non-Lethal Weapon (NLW) systems with a range of optional non-lethal capabilities across the full spectrum of threats and crisis. The Joint Non-Lethal Weapons Directorate (JNLWD) is responsible for the centralized coordination and integration of NLW technologies and systems that will support the Services and Combatant Commanders. NLWs are defined as “weapons that are explicitly designed and primarily employed so as to incapacitate personnel or materiel, while minimizing fatalities, permanent injury to personnel, and undesired damage to property and the environment.”

You can read more about the JNLWD program here and you can read about the The Bradford Non-Lethal Weapons Research Project (BNLWRP) here. Both are .pdf files.

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