Friday, June 21, 2024

Cluster Bombs: Whatever happened to the ban of its use? 

Ukraine has started using the Cluster Bombs after its public appeal to the West to its supply was heeded by the Washington. 

The allies, which includes media of course, are over the moon. 

An AP report quotes a defense expert that Cluster Bombs are an “attractive option”; more targets with fewer rounds, and since the United States has three million of them left in its storehouse, this is game, set and match for its puppet Kiev regime. 

Whoa! But why wasn’t it used from the word go? 

Well, darling, its so dangerous that way back in 2008, a Convention on Cluster Munitions banned its use, signed by no less than 120 countries which of course doesn’t include the United States. 

And how do we know its so dangerous? 

We have multiple examples of the Hegemon using it against the goat-herders and Arabs, none more horrible than the instance of Laos where between 1964-1973, the US dropped more than 2.5 million tons of bombs—that is a planeload of bombs every eight minutes, 24×7, for nine years.  It included Cluster Bombs. 

So far 25,000 Laotians are dead and dying: No less than 40% of them children. And this is the Laos War which our media has all but wiped out from our consciousness. 

What did the Laos do to deserve this punishment? 

This question is little out of context but anyway: Laos turned Communist and the US decided to teach them a lesson; denying a free, neutral country the choice it made; never mind the “sovereignty” and “integrity” the Hegemon never stops mouthing for every nation of the “free world.”

So what makes Cluster Bombs so dangerous that nearly every nation of the world is against its use? 

Cluster Bombs open in mid-air, disperse hundreds of smaller bombs over an area the size of a city. Those which don’t explode are even more dangerous: Its like landmines, and citizens keep getting maimed or dead decades later. 

You could never be sure the ground has been cleared of the remnants of cluster munitions; it doesn’t treat civilians differently from combatants and that’s why the world is against its use. 

We have the word of Hun Sen, the prime minister of Cambodia which suffered alongside Laos: He noted that half a century on, Cambodia still has not found a way to destroy all the explosives: “The real victims will be Ukrainians,” he said. 

But here we have the instance of a public appeal by Kiev duly responded to by Washington, and the entire West and media on its feet, applauding!

Interestingly, till now the United States was accusing Russia of the war crimes for using Cluster Bombs and so did the United Kingdom which rustled up the International Criminal Court (ICC) to haul Russia over the coals.

But now that the shoe is on the other foot, the silence is deafening. 

The truth is its not Moscow but Kiev which has kept dropping cluster munitions in eastern Ukraine since 2014. It’s been reported by the New York Times; and Human Rights Watch claims one such strike killed eight civilians in an Ukrainian town named Ilium. 

We hear from the White House that the Cluster Bombs are being supplied in the vital “US national security interest.” Imagine, turning the entire Ukraine into a killing field and terming it in the interest of national security when an average American can’t place Kiev on a map. 

Germany says its understands the need to send cluster munitions for otherwise, “it would be the end of Ukraine.”

Did you spot the duplicity?

Now let’s play a game: Suppose Palestine tomorrow demands cluster bombs to be used against Israel. 

It could say that like Ukraine, our territory too has been seized by the enemy: And they have done it for longer years than Russia. 

That we have been subjected to endless war crimes, illegal armed settlements have abounded and civilians are denied the basic rights. 

How do you think the United States would treat this request from the Palestine? With all its claim to be the bearer of “humanitarian intervention” which would bring a scream of disapproval from Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya or Syria. 

And suppose Palestine is able to lay its hands on Cluster Bombs, how do you think the West and NATO would react to it? 

And if one may ask: What retribution came Israel’s way when it used cluster bombs in south Lebanon during its 1982 invasion? 

The United Nations itself has accused Israel of firing no less than 4 million cluster munitions in Lebanon in 2006.

In 2017, Yemen was the second deadliest country for cluster munitions after Syria, as per the United Nations. What was done to the perpetrator of this war crime? 

The last we heard is that the US House of Representatives blocked the 2024 National Defense Authorization Act last week which would have banned the export of Cluster Bombs. 

Russia says if the West wants it to be free-for-all, we too are ready with our Cluster Bombs. 

The only factor which could stop this madness is if the citizens of the US and Europe bring down the doors of their war-hungry monsters. 

Like lemmings, they all are committing suicide with their apathy–and taking us down with them.

Media could have been one powerful factor to rouse the people but they are sleeping in bed with humanity’s enemy. 

Truth alone could end this darkness and that’s what goads me. 

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