The Holy Grail of Crowd Control

That’s what they call Raytheon’s Silent Guardian, Pain Ray, ADS, call it what you will.

Transmitted at the speed of light over a 700 yard distance, the Pain Ray is a millimeter-wave beam that penetrates 1/64th of an inch beneath the skin, causing the water molecules there to bubble, producing an intense burning sensation, said to feel like being burnt by molten lava or a hot iron. Its delivery system attached to a Humvee and aimed right, the Pain Ray makes people run away — fast.

Tests conducted at Kirtland Air Force Base south of Albuquerque, New Mexico, employ realistic combat scenarios to determine its potential effectiveness in a deployed environment, the first to expose an entire test subject to the ray.

The Defense Department want to use it for protecting Defense resources, peacekeeping, humanitarian missions and other situations in which the use of lethal force is undesirable, but already there have been inquiries from other institutes and wealthy individuals about using it to protect private property.

Non-lethal force, eh? Protecting defense resources, peacekeeping and humanitarian missions? These guys do have a sense of humor, you have to admit. ‘Hey, we’re only going to make you feel like molten hot lava is on your skin, but you won’t actually die. It’s totally humane.’

And speaking of non-lethal force, it seems to me we were just hearing about that in Indianapolis, where the Marines are going to train at the Indiana State Fairgrounds and the Raytheon facility on Holt Road.

The Marines will practice firing weapons, conducting patrols, running vehicle checkpoints, reacting to ambushes and employing nonlethal weapons, according to a statement.

I’m just saying, that puts an arch in my eyebrow. I don’t know about you.

Raytheon congratulates itself on having developed a non-lethal weapon which has been described as “Holy Grail of crowd control,” but their Silent Guardian also has its critics. One, author Richard Hunter asks:

“But what happens if the people faced with such a weapon can’t just run away? What happens if they’re trapped in a crowd, and the crowd can’t move? How much pain must that crowd endure? How long can any member of the crowd be exposed to that weapon before his or her skin — or their eyes — simply cook off? What happens if the devices are used deliberately in a manner designed to cause maximum harm — say, by training the device on prisoners trapped in prison cells until they literally go mad with pain?

What happens if the system operator turns up the power? A little bit works well, why not try a lot?

What happens if the scientists didn’t test the devices thoroughly, and they turn out to render anyone touched by them blind, or impotent, or sterile?”

Precisely. I asked similar questions when 60 Minutes did a story on this technology a few months ago.

I don’t know who was interviewing Martin for this clip, but of course they were both serious as heart attacks discussing this new weapon. When she asks Martin to discuss how this might be used, he brightens right up. It can be used in Iraq! Instead of shooting Iraqis driving their cars near checkpoints, our military can stop them with the heat ray gun. Yeah, yeah that’s it. That’s what it’s good for - stopping people with evil intentions. It will save lives. It’s good. Good. It’s all good. Let us praise military technology, Amen. The clip ends.

Let’s think through some other uses, shall we? The heat ray gun leaves no marks whatsoever on the body, but it causes tremendous pain. The second you step out of the way the pain stops. All the victim has to do is step out of the way and the pain stops.

OK. Well, what if you couldn’t step out of the way? What if you were handcuffed to a wall and some sadistic military psychopath decided to torture you with the heat ray gun? Hmmm? Has anyone thought of that?

OK. Here’s another scenario. Let’s say there’s another terrorist attack on America and the military is called in to keep order. Let’s say the government institutes martial law. Let’s say people protest. Will they use the heat ray guns on Americans? What if a group of people is surrounded by heat ray guns and can’t get out of the way? Hmmm?

Will they be allowed to use it on children? The elderly? Does anybody know? Who enforces the rules? Can we expect the same gleeful use that we see with police officers using tasers? If the heat ray gun leaves no mark, does it come down to the victim’s word against the soldier? Who do you suppose will win that contest?

It’s so typical of our corporate press to not ask questions like this. That would be impolite because it would cast aspersions on our government and on our military, and we don’t do that no matter what they do. But we should. If you think for one second that the US government would hesitate using a weapon like this which tortures without leaving a mark on American civilians, you have not been paying attention. They hit the pay-dirt with your tax dollars. This was likely a black ops technology development. You paid for it, and you will have no recourse when they use it against….You.

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