Home » Air » Air Force » Spectres and Warthogs Join Libyan Fight

Spectres and Warthogs Join Libyan Fight

by Ward Carroll on March 28, 2011

The Pentagon briefed today that two new airplanes joined the Odyssey Dawn mix last weekend:  the A-10 and the AC-130.

At this morning’s NFZ ops brief, Vice Admiral “Shortney” Gortney allowed that Spectres and Warthogs had been “employed” but only in support of the UN-backed resolutions to protect Libyan civilians.

“We’re not in direct support of the opposition, that’s not part of our mandate, and we’re not coordinating with the opposition,” he said.

So we’re peppering the Libyan desert with depleted uranium rounds at random?  Heads up, rebel dudes!

(Gouge — DT tip linkster Patrick Casey, AFA cadet extraordinaire)

Ward

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{ 108 comments… read them below or add one }

blight March 28, 2011 at 11:18 pm

Libya's low population densities should ensure that any hypothetical radiation doesn't affect large swathes of the population. However Libyan rebel troops should probably steer clear of tank hulks in the desert, or at least wait for the DU dust to disperse before moving through it. Hell, just bypass and keep on rolling.

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Jacob March 29, 2011 at 6:06 am

How much radiation does DU emit anyway? I was always under the impression that it was negligible.

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Brian March 29, 2011 at 11:04 am

Yeah, the other brian is correct. DU is made up of Uranium 238, which has a half life of several billion years. That means it emits radiation so slowly that it might as well not be putting out any at all. Any radiation it does emit will be alpha particles, which are stopped cold by things like: a few inches of air, a t-shirt, dead skin cells, and other types of exotic protection.

What makes DU dangerous is the fact that it's a heavy metal, like lead. You don't want to eat it, because it's poisonous if it gets in your system. Just like lead.

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brian March 29, 2011 at 11:12 am

I would also like to point out that the average Libyans are far more likely to die due to the health hazards Gaddafi poses if he remains in power, such as death squads, indefinite imprisonment, torture and other quantifiable maladies far worse than being slowly poisoned from not washing your food in former battlefield zones clearly indicated by the burn marks o modern weapons.

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blight March 29, 2011 at 6:28 pm

The kinetic decay rate has nothing to do with starting radioactive enrichment, which is likely to play a more immediate role in radiation damage to personnel. Yes, alpha particles cannot penetrate deeply into skin (and protection can come from clothing and such), but in the open where dust could blow freely and be inhaled by random people walking or driving through the desert, the likelihood of inhalation is high. Even if there is no radiation, then it's lanthanide poisoning. Not exactly pleasant.

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brian March 29, 2011 at 9:40 pm

kinetic decay rate? starting radioactive enrichment? I am not sure what you are talking about. The threat of radiation poisoning is directly proportional to the type of radiation and the half life of the material in question. DU aside from the effect from poisoning is perfectly harmless. No one has ever been injured due to exposure from the radiation emitted by DU. EVER. ITS IMPOSSIBLE. You could suck on a bar of it every day for the rest of your life and not be harmed from the radiation is emits. Your more radioactive than DU.

Right now Gaddafi is the threat to the health and safety of the Libyan people, not DU. DU is playing an important role in improving the health and well being of the Libyan people by killing Gaddafi's foot soldiers. This alone will increase the lifespan os the average non-privileged Libyan citizen.

brian March 29, 2011 at 9:49 am

As a radioactive emitter DU is insignificant. Your average garden variety banana is emits deadlier radiation than DU. The reason to avoid DU dust is simple metal poisoning. Thats it.

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Valentina March 29, 2011 at 11:23 am
Brian March 29, 2011 at 11:48 am

That information is not accurate. The primary danger from DU comes from breathing in or ingesting dust particles of the material. It is true that during the Gulf War no one took precautions against this. However, it is not a radioactive danger.

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blight March 29, 2011 at 6:24 pm

Anybody honestly think the Libyan rebels are going to have protection from DU dust?

Blue1 March 29, 2011 at 11:49 am

LOL! Most of it was opinion. And experts these days are a dime a dozen, biased based on their pay or perceived fame they will attain. DU is dangerous only through exposed metal or dust. Of course if you’re and idiot and want to play around burned out tanks and pick up spent rounds to sell for money (like many Iraqis do!) then you can’t hold the US responsible for ill-conceived actions. Oh, and that magazine picture of men vomiting by the tank was painted. It’s not a photo, what kind of evidence is that?

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blight March 29, 2011 at 6:29 pm

I'd always imagined that someone would be crazy enough to try to scavenge ammunition or weapons from a battlefield; it's certainly not out of the question. For instance, if you pop a tank or two and cause Khamis Brigade personnel to flee and abandon their tanks and equipment in place, it presents a tempting target for rebels to augment their own supplies, in which case they may be brought into contact with DU in some shape or form.

Blue1 March 29, 2011 at 10:40 pm

DU aside, there are sometimes secondary explosions long after popping the tank because main gun ammo decides hours later is the right time to go off. Is the US to be held responsible as well when Rebels or Children handle LIVE rounds from a burned out tank? It reminds me of the red and yellow hash reports of soldiers using a .50 cal round to hammer in mounting pins on crewserves. And yes it happens, it’s called stupidity

WAKE THE FK UP! March 30, 2011 at 2:39 am

LOOK AT THE BIRD DEFECT RATE OF US SOLDIERS AND IRAQIS CIVILIANS!!! ~ DU was made to be a last resort weapon in the cold war if russia rolled tanks into Europe!

It is highly toxic and more radioactive then you think. **** go sit on a box of DU ammunition if you think it is so safe, and dont wonder why your kids all come out inside out!

And yea DU kicks up dust too, and everyone breathes it, look at all the Gulf War Veterans with “AGENT ORANGE” syndrome! – AGENT ORANGE was a deforestation chemical, there would be no reason to use it in the desert!

Fact is our military dont give a **** about its own soldiers, and if your too stupid to see this, just look at what happenes when you are wounded and come home, you are left to rot. Oh and if you suffer post traumatic stress, they try to discharge you with out giving you any help!

War is a scam – look up USMC smedley Butler – and while you are at it google “US soldiers speak out about wars” – Soldiers themselves see and know that we are the terrorists over there, killing civilians, etc. You all been duped by nationalism, when our country has been hijacked from within and our military is being abused like a ***** *****!

theman March 28, 2011 at 11:24 pm

This is awesome! I know the A-10 is many people's favorite aircraft. Of course, using ground attack aircraft is a serious escalation. I think it is clear that Obama is taking the advantage of the fact that, as of now, Gaddafi's forces are arrayed in a manner ideally suited for attack–out in the open, in the desert. As long the civilians remain separated from the combatants, this will be a cakewalk. If Gaddafi was sitting out in the middle of the desert in a bunker, you can bet NATO would have killed him by now.

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jamesb101 March 29, 2011 at 12:03 am

This will aloow the US to send home some air assets…..

The A-10 Warhog and AC-130 gunships means this thing is turning tachical and there is no worry of offensive Libyan a/c….

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jamesb101 March 29, 2011 at 12:04 am

since the land is level there will little problem in these two a/c finding targets….

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TLAM Strike March 29, 2011 at 12:07 am

Just what we need to do, shoot radioactive material into a country undergoing a revolution that could possibly create another Iran.

Not like guys sympathetic to AQ won’t be looking for spent rounds to grind up and stick in IEDs used against us.

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Nadnerbus March 29, 2011 at 1:07 am

I'm no physicist, but I don't think it works that way.

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Curt March 29, 2011 at 2:39 am

I'm no physicist either and I know it doesn't work that way.

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A Physicist March 29, 2011 at 12:44 pm

I'm a physicist, and I have conclusive evidence that it does not work that way.

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blight March 29, 2011 at 6:53 am

DU shouldn't leave spent rounds, it's pyrophoric. Once you grind the stuff up it'll end badly for you…

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Brian March 29, 2011 at 11:10 am

It doesn't work that way at all. DU is what is left over after we take all the KABOOM stuff out of uranium. The reason we use it in bullets and tank shells is because it's very very heavy, and it doesn't bend or break or melt at high temperatures.

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blight March 29, 2011 at 6:23 pm

Probably more for high density and pyrophoric…? That and it's plentiful, certainly moreso than tungsten.

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paperpushermj March 29, 2011 at 12:20 am

Have any of you given any thought to who makes up the Anti-Government forces?
Beware the law of Unintended Consequences, it has a habit of biting people in the butt.

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sam March 29, 2011 at 12:27 am

What happened to just doing a no fly zone? Our President changes his story every day. Next he'll be dropping the 82nd AB in Libya and telling us that he can't sit by and just watch. What a typical politician.

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Nadnerbus March 29, 2011 at 1:11 am

Yeah. a part of me like seeing a guy that so thoroughly needed an ass kicking getting one, but I do question how far this goes. There is no way in hell the A-10s and spookys are hanging around watching after civilians in some backwater somewhere, as Ward alluded. If the administration wants to escalate, then escalate and say so. Don't put out half truths and dodges in the hopes that things will pan out fast enough to skate off to the next hot topic in the 24 hour news cycle before people get wise.

Modern warfare indeed. In all but name.

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Curt March 29, 2011 at 2:40 am

Its that whole transparency thing that was promised on the campaign trail.

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Jacob March 29, 2011 at 6:14 am

Supposedly the A-10 and AC-130 can hit targets with more precision, which is good for pounding those troops which are closer to cities and other civilian areas. Considering that just about all of Gadhafi's troops out in the open just got bombed to hell, you can probably guess that they'll be hiding out in more urbanized environments now.

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jamesb101 March 29, 2011 at 2:27 am

mission creep…..

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Eric Palmer March 29, 2011 at 5:25 am

Might require some checking but I don't think they use DU with the A-10 anymore.

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ward March 29, 2011 at 8:58 am

We're not seeing anything that proves they're not, Eric. US refused to sign the most recent UN moratorium on the use of DU.

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blight March 29, 2011 at 10:28 pm

It's probably still in use. DU will continue to experience stigma until it is conclusively /not/ part of "Gulf War Syndrome"…which still has no proper explanation, and DU is just one of many hypotheses' attached to it. Once we know for sure and eliminate DU from the list, it'll just be Another Weapon.

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Valentina March 29, 2011 at 6:58 am

Have you see the effect of your DU in Irak's baby? search…
Would be the first time after Balcani, Irak and Afghanistan…undemocratic

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Valentina March 29, 2011 at 7:04 am

Why do you need prove your destructive power?
Why innocent people of future generation will pay ?
Is this a action of a wise government?

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Blue1 March 29, 2011 at 11:27 am

Because people keep acting like snobby idiots, preferring to talk about peace and ultimately wanting someone else to do the dirty work of attaining it. Then you have the other people who want to call your bluff and be subborn to ideal of peace. Something to the effect of ****, ********, and p*ssies. A little ******* and ignorant, but it gets the point across.

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Blue1 March 29, 2011 at 11:30 am

…censored eh? Ok, I was referring to the Team America speech about the three different types of people. The speech was stupid, but the classification was spot on

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Valentina March 29, 2011 at 7:29 am

I live in mediterraneo sea..tunisia is in front of me
i have affinity in ancient history with all medioriente and i hope they can conquer ancient splendors of civilization and culture.
For example
I see afrikom in algery. Why?
I see the disaster caused by France in Niger for the uranium…
What do you have really in communion with this people and this nation?
What would you like teach to all north africa nation?
Obviously that Gheddafi is a dictator, Ben Alì also (he was a product of Stay Behind-Gladio operation)

Your enemy is really Gheddafi or China's business in Africa

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Bill March 29, 2011 at 1:00 pm

Worth noting that France lost much of its middle-eastern oil connections when the US invaded Iraq, and now France leads the NATO charge into Libya.

Granted, correlation does not deem causation, but Libya is a prime target that has enough political baggage to disguise a "barbaric, non-PC" resource war.

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Valentina March 29, 2011 at 1:18 pm

Yes , the most of people think that Sarkosy have different mission that libertè egalitè fraternitè..1) Ben Alì 2) Total petrol 3)Decline in France ..Eliseo?

now I leave all of you to continue your arguments
I prefere stay in my world with other principles

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Valentina March 29, 2011 at 7:41 am

After the liberation of fascism (Mussolini) in Italy, America has completely conditioned Italian politic and occupied with permanent militar bases .
has supported the military regime of the colonels in Greece and also in Spain and Pourtugal.
This is for free people? I have doubt

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orly? March 29, 2011 at 8:30 pm

And I'm sure the USSR was doing nothing. I'm pretty sure you would have sided with them.

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Project Thor March 29, 2011 at 7:51 am

Dude… spell check.

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Valentina March 29, 2011 at 7:52 am

What do you know about ancient writing , scientist in Ugarit , ancient Greece tradicions of this people ..i love my nation Sardinia is my identity and i love also Berberi's people
What is progress? army, petrol business and a lot of money and real politik?
I live in another word, i have other dreams

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Brian March 29, 2011 at 11:12 am

Is this a haiku?

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PMI March 29, 2011 at 3:17 pm

Not a Haiku

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Pandaa March 29, 2011 at 7:55 am

Can anyone tell me how the A-10 targeting works for its main gun and strafing? I've tried looking online for info but its a bit vague. I assume its just a reticle and point and shoot like ww2 but I always wonder how they can be accurate with that against small groups of troops or how the pilots can even see them from the height and speed they operate at.

I thought there might be a computer aided system where the pilot enters a target line and then the computer flys the plane briefly while it engages compensating for gravity, distance effects on the rounds etc.

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mike j March 29, 2011 at 12:57 pm

Going from memory here: There was a mod added after the Gulf War that updated the bombing computer and other systems. During strafing, a half squeeze on the trigger limits the control movements when the target is centered, full squeeze fires the gun.

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vineguy April 2, 2011 at 6:24 pm

Computer generated piper corrects for aircraft roll, pitch, and yaw, and range to target.
DU rounds will only hurt you if they throw frags/dirt/rocks on you. The amount of radiation wouldn't be lethal if you were living in a small box made of these things.
Du is nice and dense – when it's moving fast, it penetrates armor plate. Ever try cutting armor plate (1/4" thick) with an oxyacetyene torch? Blisters the paint, wastes your time.

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Valentina March 29, 2011 at 7:57 am

Project Thor
I was born after the dictator Mussolini (Dude)

sorry for my english ..i use google translate

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SMSgt Mac March 29, 2011 at 7:59 am

If A-10s and Gunships were used without friendly boots on the ground nearby, then dollars to doughnuts they were both used at night, or the gunships at night and the A-10s from above ~10K ft using AGM-65s or Paveways.

Valentina, don't waste your time here. Post where the Politicos will read it: they have the say as to what goes down. The military just makes sure it does go down. I can't defend this war, just the efficacy of those fighting it.

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mat March 29, 2011 at 8:48 am

Nailed it , i doubt they are being used for strafing as danger of manpads is still to great. But Spectre has uniqe night fighting capability that is way above any fighter of bomber + a 105mm gun enables precision fire out of igla or similar manpads range.Spectre is one of the few aircraft that can be used to target enemy forces in urban areas. Droping 250,500 or 1000 pound bombs at tanks is bit of an overkill

And using 105mm rounds to kill tanks instead of 150.000+$ missle against a 30.000$ tank makes sense

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Psypher March 29, 2011 at 4:33 pm

mat, Spectre/Spooky cannot (let me rephrase that: SHOULD NOT) be used in urban AOs. They are incredibly inaccurate!

Furthermore, they suffer from tactical limitations (like oh, just off the top of my head, the USAF only allows them to fly at night and Libya has a sh!t load of SA-7s all over the place).

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orly? March 29, 2011 at 8:32 pm

So those airstrikes did nothing eh?

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mat March 30, 2011 at 4:46 pm

I am not implying use of 25mm gatlings but the 105mm is very accurate and that keeps them out of manpads range and manpads and AAA are the reason it only operates at night gunship expirence shows that gunship stying on station past dawn it was quickly shoot down(by AAA in vietnam and by strela in iraq ) and these planes are hight value assets 200+mio$ plane plus 14 crew

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blight March 30, 2011 at 11:55 pm

Having issues finding CEP information for the M102; especially for artillery not used in the indirect mode at long ranges. I've found numbers for artillery pieces at 50 meter, which is bad.

Zap March 29, 2011 at 11:20 am

what is the range of a A-10 ? pretty short right ? so they must be flying out of Egypt , Sicily or Malta

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Valentina March 29, 2011 at 8:01 am

American influence in GreeceMain article: Operation Gladio#Greece

The Phoenix rising from its flames and the silhouette of the soldier bearing a rifle with fixed bayonet was the emblem of the Junta. On the header the word Greece (Ελλας) and on the footer 21 April 1967, the date of the coup d'état, can be seen in Greek.In 1947, the United States formulated the Truman Doctrine, and began to actively support a series of authoritarian governments in Greece, From Wikipedia…this is story!

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Valentina March 29, 2011 at 8:03 am

if we measure the culture they are very rich

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Valentina March 29, 2011 at 9:45 am

don’t know nomadism, don’t know that Berberi are75-80 million

and Gheddafi don’t live in desert

so who you are killing with DU?

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Valentina March 29, 2011 at 10:00 am

I'm not upset really!
I'm trying to think why
In Greace is probably that dictactorship is hard to win but i don't know if this has produced difficulties economy .
For example in Lybia is strange but Gheddafi has product material progress, they aren't poor . it' s possible that is only a tribal war into Cirenaica and Tripolitania.
I think is different respect revolution in Tunisia

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Valentina March 29, 2011 at 10:10 am

The situation ins very serious

Egypt and Tunisia are in transition (Egypt again with militar government)
Syria , Lybia, Bharein…and very different..religious minorities , tribal war , monarchie minorities,

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Riceball March 29, 2011 at 10:41 am

A DU round is much denser than a conventional round which gives the 30mm Avenger cannon on the A-10 an extra bit of punch against armor. So instead of either squashing or breaking into a million pieces when it hits armor it cuts through it turning the tank into Swiss cheese. It's also supposed disintegrate into dust after penetrating and the heat from the force of the energy it generates during penetration causes the dust to ignite doing all sorts of nasty things to the inside of the tank.

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SJE March 29, 2011 at 11:46 am

DU is not only very dense, it is relatively hard, and has some nice "self sharpening" properties against armor, instead of flattening out like lead. DU is therefore good against armor, not as good against personel.

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Brian March 29, 2011 at 11:25 am

DU means depleted uranium. When you dig uranium out of the ground, there's only about .06% (not 6%, but *point* zero six percent) of it that is the correct type for making nuclear reactions. Unfortunately, it's all mixed in with the rest of it. Depleted uranium is the other 99.4% that doesn't react to much. It's still technically radioactive, because it gives off a little less radiation as a banana. And
in about 4 billion years it will break down and become the kind of uranium that goes boom,

The reason we use it is because it's very heavy, and it doesn't bend or break, and we have a whole lot of it just sitting around. Back in the 50s when we were building lots of nukes, we had all this extra DU sitting around and we didn't know what to do with it. Then someone realized this stuff makes kick ass anti-tank rounds, When it hits a hard target, all these metal shavings flake off of it, and then catch fire and explode like a grain silo. This tends to happen *inside* the tank you just shot.

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SJE March 29, 2011 at 11:47 am

Although the USA used DU left over from reactors (which caused a stink, because of trace Pu)

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Valentina March 31, 2011 at 4:42 am

http://www.unionesarda.it/Articoli/Articolo/21855
Uranio DU in Quirra-PISQ?

«Guardi, è sufficiente un micro-grammo, cioè un milionesimo di grammo, per uccidere una persona. Una tale quantità dà luogo a 2000 disintegrazioni atomiche al giorno con produzione di raggi alfa, cioè le radiazioni nucleari più dannose. La loro pericolosità, anche futura, dipende dalla conformazione della superficie dei frammenti».
Evandro Lodi Rizzini, fisico nucleare dell'Università di Brescia e del Cern di Ginevra
Inchiesta P.I.S.Q. and after Teulada

Look, just a micro-gram, that is a millionth of a gram, kill a person

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Valentina March 31, 2011 at 4:56 am

What is it PISQ?

Vi basterà sapere che il PISQ si estende per 12.700 ettari di terreno e 2.800.000 ettari di mare, con uno spazio aereo non quantificabile.
Per farci un’idea delle dimensioni del poligono, ricorderemo che la sola area marina é più grande della Sardegna stessa.
Tutte le nazioni della NATO possono affittare il poligono per testare e sviluppare i propri armamenti. Sappiamo però che il PISQ é stato usato anche da libici e israeliani.

Oltre che fungere da campo di prova per la sperimentazione di armamenti innovativi testando razzi, bombe, aeroplani, carri armati e creando simulazioni con (relativi inquinamenti) identici ad una vera guerra, il PISQ lavora anche come mercato.
Qui le nazioni e le imprese produttrici d’armi s’incontrano, qualcuno vende, gli altri comprano. Chi é autorizzato a partecipare in questa “esibizione commerciale” di guerra? E’ solo una questione di soldi. L’area del PISQ può essere affittata per 50.000 euro all’ora. Tre nazioni al giorno possono usarla per otto ore consecutive, se rispettano l’orario concordato. In un solo giorno operativo nel PISQ si guadagnano 1.200.000 euro.
http://menostorie.com/blog/?p=86

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Valentina March 31, 2011 at 5:09 am

In Sardinia i don't see difference between Mussolini-Hitler and the government left or right after the war

For oldvet and his freedom

Valentina March 29, 2011 at 11:28 am
Brian March 29, 2011 at 11:55 am

The US has not signed on as a member of the International Criminal Court, nor on treaties against the use of DU. The thing you have to understand about treaties is that countries are only bound to them if they sign on for it.

There IS NOT an international government. Nations are free to behave as they choose to. They also face the consequences of that action, like Libya is now.

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@Earlydawn March 29, 2011 at 12:05 pm

While I understand that tactical vehicles have been approved as valid targets under the operation's marching orders, doesn't the addition of specialized air-to-ground shooters indicate mission creep? Are we supporting all the way to Tripoli, or not?

What is the mission?

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STemplar March 29, 2011 at 1:48 pm

That's evolving as we go apparently, because I'm not sure how you reconcile "scaling back" with the addition of AC130s and A10s.

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SJE March 29, 2011 at 2:13 pm

I understood that they were also targeting ground forces.

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@Earlydawn March 29, 2011 at 3:22 pm

There was limited targeting of ground forces and munitions facilities, but nothing that warrants a specialized air-to-ground shooter like the A-10, much less the AC-130.

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STemplar March 29, 2011 at 3:58 pm

Unless your scaling back involves systematically picking apart entrenched armor around a city the size of say Tripoli…..

Joe Schmoe March 29, 2011 at 1:20 pm

Valentina,

STOP SPAMMING!

Sincerely,
The normal people of DT.

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Tim March 29, 2011 at 1:27 pm

Valentina,

It's time to take your idiot medicines and get that once-a-month shower, your odor is upsetting the rats.

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Chris March 29, 2011 at 2:59 pm

I'm sure oil is the motive here…if the US was really interested in humanitarian issues Ivory Coast or Bahrain would also be great places to get involved. However, natural resource availability is my specialty and since we've either hit or are almost at peak oil production, we need to secure as much as possible. The entire N. American (Canadian + US) way of life would be drastically altered if we no longer had secure sources of oil. I personally think these conflicts could be avoided if the US gov't just invested more money into alternative energy sources. It's inevitable that the supply will dwindle, so it would make sense to start investing into technology to supplement it.

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MCQknight March 29, 2011 at 4:06 pm

I'm still waiting for the petagon to release some friggin video of all these Air Force strikes. Hundreds of sorties flown, hundreds of bombs dropped, and not a single solitary combat video feed from American aircraft. All they've release is some crappy bomb-damage assesment pics. I remember during the first weeks of OIF and OEF, all the Pentagon briefings were was showing Afghan and Iraqi tanks/APCs being blown to hell.

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Dhunt March 29, 2011 at 5:15 pm

a-10's are the bomb beat , guardian angels

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mike j March 29, 2011 at 5:54 pm

I'm not sure I fully understanding you. The GAU-8 points where the nose goes. The rounds it fires are purely ballistic, not guided. The pilot certainly has the ability to see a IR laser marker and aim a weapon at it, including the gun. They've had the ability to do that with the Pave Penny pod mounted on the right cheek under the cockpit for pretty much the planes' whole service. Now they carry the Sniper XR pod also.

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Psypher March 29, 2011 at 6:10 pm

no, no… I wasn't talking about the rounds themselves obviously.

I mean sometimes the mounting for rotary cannons is "hard" (immovable), sometimes they have a soft mount with a little play/maneuverability, and sometimes they're fully maneuverable like in the AH-64 (slaved to TAPS)…

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Psypher March 29, 2011 at 6:14 pm

*TADS (sorry)

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mike j March 29, 2011 at 6:51 pm

Ah. Nope, the GAU-8 is mounted solidly to the airframe, angled down 2 degrees. Like I said, it points where the nose goes.

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joe March 29, 2011 at 6:35 pm

Sooo…has everything come to a screaching halt in Afghanstan? I mean, by all news thread indications, not a damn thing is happening over there where we got people on the ground getting shot at or IEDed.

Hmmmm 150,000 troops in Harms way…or lets watch the Fast movers do their stuff on a piss-ant country.

Focus People! For Gawd Sakes Focus! Stop looking at the Oooooo shiny thing and get back to reporting that ugly thing over there!

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blight March 29, 2011 at 6:47 pm

Wag the Dog for the win.

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orly? March 29, 2011 at 8:39 pm

Afghanistan has no opposing tanks or real front lines. Things are easier to hit when they are stationary and well defined.

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OldVet March 29, 2011 at 7:09 pm

Save a 100,000 lives and give freedom a chance.
Let Valentina run the mouth courtesy of the freedom bought with American blood.
Oh well. OldVet

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Valentina March 29, 2011 at 7:15 pm

eh certo

io non sono italiana (i'm not italian)
Deu Seu Sarda (io sono sarda)

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orly? March 29, 2011 at 8:34 pm

It is quite apparent Valentina has no common sense.

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amauyong March 30, 2011 at 3:06 am

Too bad….A-10s can't be manufactured anymore…

As tactical close air-support….she is no equals….

closest to her is the SU 25 (Frogfoot)…but the A-10 still has the wins for me.

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Jay March 30, 2011 at 8:38 am

You guys missed the real news:

"Spectres and Warthogs had been “employed” but only in support of the UN-backed resolutions to protect Libyan civilians."

The A10s and AC130s are taking out vehicles en route to fight the rebels.
This means armed fighters in civilian clothes are now considered "civilians" since Obama says so. This is a precedent for the US to intervene in any country where "civilians" with AK47s are in danger.

This redefinition of armed fighter as civilian opens the door for the US to intervene anywhere there is internal armed conflict.
This new doctrine could be used against Israel to protect Hamas and Hizbullah "civilians" from counter attacks, or to stop Bahrain and KSA from harming "civilians" who are armed by Iran to take over those nations.

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orly? March 30, 2011 at 10:22 am

conspiracy! everywhere!

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devildog7885 March 30, 2011 at 5:35 pm

conspircy is nothing more than a plan by individuals or a group of them LOL. conspicyy theories is tomorrows Realities I Might Add. look at the theories that are now being taught in our schools as being fact and sound science!.

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jamesb101 March 31, 2011 at 11:12 am

11:09hrs…. 3/31/11…..CJCS Mullen….There are NO ground laser teams from the US……I/F/O the House…

The Britis HAVE said they DO have their people there….

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Jonathan March 31, 2011 at 9:25 pm

This would of been a perfect test candidate for those vietnam era COIN aircraft we were going to buy and put into service. Too bad all the good ideas are never used.

We could of had thousands of propeller driven dive bombers wreaking havoc in libya right now, instead we have overpriced jet engines that self destruct and crash into the ground trying to take pictures.

They should have a lottery for "General for a day" because it seems like most people could do a better job at managing such a badass military that somehow looks stupid time and time again. 500 billion to destroy a few dozen tanks, handful of radars, and a few buildings. I want my money back.

Meanwhile ghadaffi is still shelling cities.

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Rocky April 4, 2011 at 2:47 am

The primary reason A-10s and AC-130s would be employed to this theater is for Combat Search and Rescue missions -the retrieval of downed allied pilots. This certainly isn't being mentioned by our leaders because God-forbid the general public should be concerned about the safety of our fliers.

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Blue1 March 29, 2011 at 11:54 am

While I appreciate a well informed citizen of their country, don’t use wiki as your reference and/or arguing point, and do research on whatever webpage your reading and forming opinions with (fact checking). You’re clearly doing none of the above

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Valentina March 29, 2011 at 5:23 pm

what do you want?

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orly? March 29, 2011 at 8:37 pm

I believe Valentina is incapable of understanding what spam is.

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blight March 29, 2011 at 10:25 pm

My concern is the semantic nature of "depleted". The pyrophoric and self-sharpening nature of DU lend it to easy aerosolization and inhalation.

I would love to see the clinical trial for sucking on a bar of DU. Maybe there is no serious radiation concern (since again, the clinical trial on human subjects hasn't been done yet), but aerosol of /anything/ has long term health consequences, especially for heavy metals.

Half-life is a function of the decay rate. So when you say it is related to the half-life…

Agreed on the nature of the particle, some of which penetrate different materials to a varying degree. However I refer to starting materials as determining eventual concentrations of alpha and gamma particles as a function of the decay rate, which in turn affects the half-life of radiation.

In any case, DU has been on the list of "omg evil warstuff" of peaceniks for years, alongside nuclear weapons, napalm and white phosphorus. Out of sight, out of mind in this case. We'll see if anybody in the media jumps on controversial weapon useage, but it seems like the White House has the media well under control…

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Blue1 March 29, 2011 at 10:53 pm

Meh, I just wish the peaceniks would help us. Think how much more effective warfare would be if they just split into two groups. The first group can stand slighty infront of and to the left of each soldier during combat, the second group can come along and convince what’s left of a population how we should all love one another. They are the experts on peace, and peace only happens when man has had his fill of war…

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orly? March 30, 2011 at 10:28 am

Conspiracy!

Your neighbor is a government spy! You have a satellite looking right at you right now!

Your IP is being traced right now, and DSA henchmen are coming to get you to execute you in a FEMA death camp, RIGHT NOW!!!

QUICK!!! GET THE TIN FOIL! ITS YOUR ONLY HOPE!

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blight March 30, 2011 at 10:55 am

Don't mix Agent Orange with "Gulf War Syndrome". The rainbow defoliants were toxic because of an impurity in the production process, one with nasty teratogenic and carcinogenic effects. For instance, Col. Hackworth likely died from cancers related to Agent Blue exposure, and not necessarily Agent Orange.

Just because a clinical symptom presents does not mean a particular condition is there. Many conditions share clinical presentation.

I will agree that the military hasn't always been nice to its troops: the test where soldiers marched into radioactive fallout to test nuclear battlefield capability was necessary, but probably didn't go well for them. The botched anthrax vaccine controversy of the early '90s is something else to watch out for, as was the late response to PTSD (though to be fair, very few people recognized PTSD even outside of the military.)

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blight March 30, 2011 at 10:51 am

Isn't this not unlike when NATO tankers were abandoned, villagers came out to steal petrol and the tankers were destroyed? Lots of things people do at their own risk…and still do.

Sadly, it's no different from the battlefields of the Secret War. I was watching Bomb Harvest and I find it hard to imagine plowing a field and running into a old bomb from the '60s or '70s…

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Tasty Spam March 31, 2011 at 1:53 pm

Valentina don't worry Spam is delicious, i had some with my eggs and a begal this morning.

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