Oslo treaty will make Coalition Ops Illegal?

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by Brandt, May 22, 2008.

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  1. 100 nation treaty talks are taking place in Dublin to discuss the Oslos Treaty to ban the use of cluster munitions. Our pal Gordon has stated the UK's support.

    Problem is, the US have a bit of an issue with it:

    "Acting Assistant Secretary of State for Political-Military Affairs Stephen Mull said the outright ban envisaged in the Oslo process would be impossible to achieve, given the continued utility of the weapons.

    Mull faulted provisions of the emerging treaty, including one which he said would effectively criminalize military cooperation between signatory states and those outside the treaty"

  2. From what I've read I believe we, the UK, are arguing for some kind of exemption so that we can still do multinational ops without the human rights lawyers taking us to court back in the UK.
  3. Arguing for cluster munitions is like arguing for cold blooded murder.
  4. Well I'm convinced!

    I've always like cluster bombs!

  5. Well if Gordon Brown opposes Cluster Munitions, then thats the only reason we need to keep them, the useless one eyed snivelling cnut!

    They are a valuable weapon in our armoury and we should not be denied the opportunity to deploy them.

    What next, normal bombs being banned cos one or two of them fail to explode?
  6. What’s the issue with cluster munitions?
    Is it that kids pick them up years later and get killed? If that’s really the issue stick plastic spikes all over them and paint them black and yellow.

    If you pick that up you’ve already lost
  7. As opposed to that nice warm-hearted murder we hear so much about.

    Warfighting is cold blooded murder. Do you really want the CO planning a Battalion attack because he's had a hissy fit? I'd rather he did it calmlyand with as much attention to killing the enemy as possible; what's the phrase I'm looking for here? Oh yes, cold blooded.

    Personally if I were on ops and the situation called for use of cluster munitions, anti personnel mines, flammenwerfers or tactical nukes, I'd be quite happy using them if it meant my soft pink skin (and that of my comrades) had a better chance of remaining unperforated. But then I always was a selfish git like that.

    Now if you were to argue that cluster munitions aren't very useful in the present wars we're fighting, and actually make our job harder, that might hold a bit more water. However, cluster munitions may still be useful in other types of operations, and therefore IMHO should remain in the toy cupboard. Because let's face it nobody knows what the next war will be, or the one after that, and we'll look pretty silly if we come to a point where the ideal solution would be a couple of CBUs ,only to find the cupboard's bare.
  8. I'll bet that Oslo won't prevent the USA, Russia or China manufacturing said weapons...

    Brazil's also not keen to see them banned, so there'll be some grumping in S American too...

  9. Cluster Munitions - When you absolutely, positively have to kill every mother ****** in the kill box. Accept no substitue.
  10. As has been stated, it's a very useful tool to have.

    I have also mentioned in another thread, once the peaceniks get these banned, they will just go onto someting else until soldiers are left saying "so what are we supposed to use, harsh language?"

  11. Cluster bombs are no more "evil" than any other weapon. It is all about intention at the end of the day. If nation A however is prepared to make its cluster bombs more efficient and minimise the "blind" count, educate those it is bombing and conduct realistic post-operational clean up...well fine. however blanket bans like this, signed up to by the good guys do not really work. Landmines as a topic for comparative debate anyone?
  12. I am currently in Dublin for the CM treaty negotiations as a member of the Cluster Munition Coalition - a group of organisations and civil society from all over the world advocating a ban. I have been involved in the campaign for more than 3 years. I am not a pacifist and as an ex soldier I am fully supportive of our armed forces.

    CM are an outdated weapon that were last used effectively in WW2 when large grouped armies advanced in armour across open plains. Since that time they have proved ineffective and caused severe humanitarian harm. The problem with CM is not that they kill and maim civilians in war time but that they leave a deadly legacy for many years that causes casualties and prevents reconstruction (an example is Laos - 260million CM dropped and a country kept in a poverty trap for over 30 years). They also cause resentment amongst the so called "liberated" and make it far harder for military peace keeping operations that should follow conflict.

    Unlike other [unitary] weapons CM are delivered into an area in their thousands and fail 5-30% of the time [including those fitted with self destruct mechanisms such as the Israeli M85 which the UK has]. Because of the nature of their fuzing they often explode with the slightest of movement. They very often present as much as a hazard to advancing troops who have used them as they do to an enemy.

    The UK has not used CM for the last 5 years as military commanders have realsied the problems they cause. Browns statement yesterday was in response to a question at PM's Q time and this letter from 9 former senior military commanders that appeared in the Times on Monday to coincide with the Dublin conference:


    The treaty problem areas [at present] are definitions, exemptions, interoperability and transition times.

    Must go and pester some politicians!

  13. If you really want to **** up a country for years then Cluster bombs are the way.

    But if you have any plans for improving that said country after the war then they are a nightmare.
    Anyone that has been to Bosnia or Kosovo can see the damage they caused and are still causing Decades later.

    I say ban them.
  14. Not sure it's the weapon but the how we employ of the weapon. Bombing has moved on from carpet bombing Dresden in WW2.

    I don't see any humanitarian issues with denying a mil air base through cluster munitions?

    Worth noting that at least three soldiers (off the top of my head) have been killed trying to clear cluster munitions since the Balkans. Do we keep a training stock?

    There's a lot of issues, I'm sure someone in MoD is getting a headache working through them all. All the reporting I've seen has been terribly emotive, highlighting the plight of Lebanon and other examples where cluster munitions are used in ways that I'm not convinced echo current UK doctrine.

    I find it a bit easy for us to ban a controversial weapon, knowing that we can rely on the Americans to use them if the sht ever hits the fan.