Southeast Asia States

There is a country which, without having been at war with anyone else, received nine years, on average, fully lethal load of a bomber B-52 American every eight minutes. From Phonsavan, Laos, the correspondent for The Guardian in Southeast Asia, Ian MacKinnon, and to publish this data reminds us that United States aviation launched more tonnage of bombs that whoever was used during the second world war on the Asian country. This was the secret war that United States fought against Laos as unfolded another war, this open and well known in Viet Nam, against the North Vietnamese army. At that it was destroying the so-called Ho Chi Minh Trail, the set of tracks and trails Viet Nam with China, that communicated through Laos and Cambodia and by means of which fed the war effort of the Vietcong. In the province of Xieng Juang, in the center of Laos, its new capital, Phonsavan, has been rebuilt from nothing, but may hold the title of being the City that has most suffered the effects of cluster and, then pumps the most bombed in the world with these weapons so uncontrollable and lethal effects. It is estimated that more than 260 million of these traitors artifacts, of which about 80 million did not blast were dropped in Laos. As a result, says MacKinnon, more than 13,000 people (half, children) have perished or have been mutilated to dig into the fields in search of scrap metal, as a means of livelihood in a country where nearly 40% of arable land is flooded by these small pumps, resembling a ball size.

If this is coupled with the fact that 80% of the Laotian population live from agriculture, is easy to understand the enormous danger for the life and prosperity of the country contain cluster bombs. Hence the need to limit or prohibit the use of some weapons whose most outstanding peculiarity is that they continue acting on their own, although signing peace between fighters who used them. Not yet a reliable procedure to found the disable automatically after a certain time. More than a hundred countries who attended the diplomatic conference for the adoption of a Convention on cluster munitions in Dublin are committed to not use such weapons ever, under any circumstances. It also prohibits their manufacture, acquisition, storage or sale. When at least 30 countries have ratified the Convention, it will become part of international humanitarian law. A few days ago began the ratification process, which Spain has signed and has begun practicing with the destruction of 6,000 bombs of this type in Oslo.

Of the 26 members of NATO, 18 will also sign the Convention. It is regrettable that several important countries not attending the Conference, such as China, India, United States (the nominal champion of human rights), Israel (which used this type of pumps profusely in the 2006 Lebanon war), Pakistan and Russia, among the leading manufacturers and providers of this type of weapon. Anyway, you are already taking the first steps of an irreversible path that will have to move forward in the long term all States. Alberto Piris General of artillery in reserve original author and source of the article.