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Will we hear mention of this on the U.S. Sunday Morning talking heads shows, crickets! We the U.S. media be reporting on this, chances are extremely little if at all and most certainly not a front page story!

Cluster bomb ban comes into effect

The treaty prohibits signatories from using,
producing and stockpiling the weapons [AFP]

1 August 2010

A global treaty banning cluster munitions has gone into force.

The Convention on Cluster Munitions, which became binding international law on Sunday, prohibits the use, production and stockpiling of the weapon, which is blamed for killing and maiming tens of thousands of civilians.

Thomas Nash, from the Cluster Munition Coalition, a network of 200 civil society organisations, hailed the ban.

"This is the most significant piece of international humanitarian law to enter into force since the land mine ban 10 years ago. From this moment on, countries have a legal obligation to assist the victims," the Reuters news agency quoted him as saying.

The treaty requires signatories to destroy stockpiled cluster munitions within eight years, clear contaminated areas within 10 years and help affected communities and survivors.

The Convention on Cluster Bombs was first adopted in May 2008 and ratified by 37 states including Britain, France, Germany and Japan, which all have significant stocks.

The United States, the world's largest producer with the biggest stockpile of 800 million submunitions, has refused to sign the treaty so far, although it says it will ban the weapon from 2018. Continued

Cluster bomb ban treaty takes effect worldwide

Moldova’s Ministry of Defence destroys cluster munition stocks in a controlled explosion at Bulboaca training ground, 29 July 2010. Photo credit: Asle Huse/NPA

(London, 29 July 2010) – The Convention on Cluster Munitions takes effect on Sunday, 1 August 2010, when it becomes binding international law in countries around the world. In dozens of countries, campaigners from the Cluster Munition Coalition (CMC) will join UN agencies, governments and international organisations in events celebrating the swift entry into force of the most significant disarmament and humanitarian treaty in over a decade.

"Campaigners around the world are celebrating a triumph of humanitarian values over a cruel and unjust weapon," said Thomas Nash, Coordinator of the CMC. "At a time when concern over civilian deaths in conflict is in the news, this treaty stands out as a clear example of what governments must do to protect civilians and redress the harm already caused by cluster bombs, by assisting victims and making land safe."

Adopted in Dublin on 30 May 2008 and opened for signature in Oslo in December 2008, the Convention bans the use, production, stockpiling and transfer of cluster munitions and calls for the destruction of stockpiles within eight years, clearance of cluster munition-contaminated land within 10 years, and assistance to cluster munition survivors and affected communities. On 1 August, all of the Convention’s provisions become fully and legally binding for states that have joined. Continued

And from another use of WMD's with long lasting affects on a population when used against, but this is about the possible contamination here in what we now call "The Homeland":

Attn: More Agent Orange Testing, in U.S.

If this stands as true and not properly cleaned up then the problems still exist as we've seen with the following generations of Vietnamese since our use during the occupation of!

Army Probes Its Use Of Agent Orange In Md. City

Jul 30, 2010 FREDERICK, Md. (AP) ―  The Army says it's searching internal records for details on outdoor spray testing of Agent Orange at Fort Detrick in Frederick.

A Fort Detrick spokesman said Friday that the Maryland Department of the Environment asked the Army about the tests. The Veterans Administration says they were conducted there in the 1940s and '50s. Continued

Originally posted to jimstaro on Sun Aug 01, 2010 at 06:53 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (17+ / 0-)

    "What is the difference between an al Qaida terrorist and a misguided American terrorist?" "The planes they fly!"

    by jimstaro on Sun Aug 01, 2010 at 06:53:03 AM PDT

  •  Thanks Jim (5+ / 0-)

    I updated my diary instead of doing a new one ):
    Banning the Bomb(s)

    Today the world's innocents are a little bit safer.

    Afghanistan - Come for the lithium and stay for the opium.

    by BOHICA on Sun Aug 01, 2010 at 07:21:53 AM PDT

  •  Something we won't see on our TV (7+ / 0-)

    Afghanistan - Come for the lithium and stay for the opium.

    by BOHICA on Sun Aug 01, 2010 at 07:24:41 AM PDT

  •  This is great (5+ / 0-)
    This is a step forward even if the US is not on board.

    But I'm very curious if the US is intending to abide it, why wait until 2018?

    What about my Daughter's future?

    by koNko on Sun Aug 01, 2010 at 07:26:35 AM PDT

  •  Why it matters (9+ / 0-)

    Food packet on the left, cluster bomb on the right.

    Both of these were dropped all over Afghanistan. Is a child going to be able to tell the difference?

    Soraj Ghulam Habib, 16, Herat, Afghanistan
    "Before I lost my legs I had great dreams."

    I lost both my legs when I found a cluster bomb I thought was a can of food.  I was six years old at the time and was walking home from a picnic with my cousin and four other members of my family.  My cousin was killed instantly in the blast and the rest of us were injured.

    When I got to the hospital, I was so badly injured one doctor even suggested I be given a lethal injection. But after a series of operations I survived.  I am now in a wheelchair and my world has shrunk considerably.

    Before I lost my legs I had great dreams.  When I grew up I wanted to work for my family and society. Cluster bombs have shattered my dreams.  I can no longer go to school or play with my friends and my family must support a wheelchair user forever.  When people see me in the street they laugh at me and they pity me.  But now I am part of this international campaign to ban the weapon that took my legs.

    I am calling on governments to deliver a treaty that will not only ban cluster munitions but will provide opportunities for people like me.  The treaty must ban the use, production, transfer and stockpile of these weapons immediately.
    Sorji's blog

    Afghanistan - Come for the lithium and stay for the opium.

    by BOHICA on Sun Aug 01, 2010 at 07:28:10 AM PDT

  •  America really needs (7+ / 0-)

    to just let go of Reagan's whole "weapons are a shield" idea. We need to move along with the rest of the world on nuclear disarmament and similar issues (like the one in the diary) for the better of the world.

    •  We're (6+ / 0-)

      The Arrogant and Apathetic, "Why do they hate us so?", great? power? on the planet as the World watches in amazement at the total stupidity and dropping intelligence level, that they once not only admired but strived to achieve, from within our borders!!

      "What is the difference between an al Qaida terrorist and a misguided American terrorist?" "The planes they fly!"

      by jimstaro on Sun Aug 01, 2010 at 07:54:16 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The we wouldn't sell as much death (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      claude, jimstaro, Otteray Scribe, mawazo

      Obama seeks to expand arms exports by trimming approval process

      WASHINGTON — The United States is currently the world biggest weapons supplier — holding 30 per cent of the market — but the Obama administration has begun modifying export control regulations in hopes of enlarging the U.S. market share, according to U.S. officials.

      President Barack Obama already has taken the first steps by tucking new language into the Iran sanctions bill signed in early July. His aides are now compiling the "munitions list," which regulates the sale of military items.

      Afghanistan - Come for the lithium and stay for the opium.

      by BOHICA on Sun Aug 01, 2010 at 07:58:07 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Women and children... (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BOHICA, jimstaro, Otteray Scribe, mawazo

    ...working in rice paddies in Vietnam and Cambodia are being killed, even today, by the cluster bombs we dropped there so many years ago.

    These weapons are so inhuman that only countries like the US and Israel could ever oppose a ban on their use - and since the US and Israel will not give them up, naturally neither will China and Russia who may be forced to defend themselves from Freedom & Democracy one day.

    •  And Laos (5+ / 0-)

      UXO Loa


      Lao PDR has the unwanted distinction of being per capita the most heavily bombed nation in the world.  Between the years 1964 and 1973, the United States flew more than half a million bombing missions, delivering more than two million tons of explosive ordnance, in an attempt to block the flow of North Vietnamese arms and troops through Laotian territory. The ordnance dropped include more than 266 million submunitions (known as "bombies" in Lao) released from cluster bombs.

      Significant land battles, including those during the war for independence during the French colonial era and between the Pathet Lao and the Royal Lao forces, also contributed vast quantities of unexploded heavy bombs, rockets, grenades, artillery munitions, mortars, anti-personnel landmines, and improvised explosive devices.

      It is estimated that up to 30% of all ordnance did not explode. Such unexploded ordnance (UXO) continues to remain in the ground, maiming and killing people, and hindering socio-economic development and food security.

      Afghanistan - Come for the lithium and stay for the opium.

      by BOHICA on Sun Aug 01, 2010 at 08:01:11 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  More so Laos than the other two (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        BOHICA, jimstaro, Otteray Scribe, mawazo

        as Laos was the major transhippment route for peple and material for the war effort in South Vietnam. Cambodia has a larger problem with land mines.

        If the Lao PDR would sign on the the convention against land mines I'd be much happier. Laos, Vietnam, and Burma continue to not be signatories against land mines. Burma and Laos have up until recently planted landmines in continueing internal conflicts with their own citizens. I'm not sure how much mining continues as information from conflict areas is limited.

        "Don't fall or we both go" Derek Hersey

        by ban nock on Sun Aug 01, 2010 at 08:09:25 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  From Haaretz 2006 (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    claude, BOHICA, jimstaro, mawazo

    IDF commander: We fired more than a million cluster bombs in Lebanon

    Phosphorous and cluster bombs heavily used; unexploded munitions litter wide area of Lebanon.

    "What we did was insane and monstrous, we covered entire towns in cluster bombs," the head of an IDF rocket unit in Lebanon said regarding the use of cluster bombs and phosphorous shells during the war.

    Quoting his battalion commander, the rocket unit head stated that the IDF fired around 1,800 cluster bombs, containing over 1.2 million cluster bomblets.

    Those who hear not the music-think the dancers mad

    by Eiron on Sun Aug 01, 2010 at 08:32:02 AM PDT

  •  I am off to (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Afghanistan - Come for the lithium and stay for the opium.

    by BOHICA on Sun Aug 01, 2010 at 09:24:48 AM PDT

  •  Aki Ra (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    CNN Hero Aki Ra Disarms Land Mines In Cambodia He Placed Decades Earlier

    Aki Ra, leader of the nonprofit Cambodian Self Help Demining  team, works to make his country more safe by clearing land mines on a daily basis. He estimates that he and his team have cleared more than 50,000 land mines -- some of which he planted himself.

    At around age ten, Aki Ra was selected by the Khmer Rouge to lay land mines in and around his village. Over the next three years Aki Ra must have planted some 4,000 to 5,000 land mines in a single month.

       "I had [bad] feelings, because sometimes we were fighting against our friends and relatives," Aki Ra said. "I felt sad when I saw a lot of people were killed. A lot of people were suffering from landmines. [But] I did not know what to do, [because] we were under orders." Continued

    "What is the difference between an al Qaida terrorist and a misguided American terrorist?" "The planes they fly!"

    by jimstaro on Sun Aug 01, 2010 at 09:48:56 AM PDT

  •  Hearing: Agent Orange Update (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    The Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee has scheduled a hearing to examine the reasons and evidence used to add these three conditions to the list of presumptive diseases related to Agent Orange exposure.

    Jul-31-2010 The President signed the War Supplemental yesterday. In that bill is the $13.4 billion in funding for the three newly designated presumptive diseases related to Agent Orange exposure.

    What does this mean for veterans who have already filed and those waiting to file on these conditions? The money is now in place and the authorization to spend it needs to be completed. The House overwhelmingly passed the VA/Military Construction Authorization bill earlier this week and now the Senate must do the same. The House version authorizes the money for these new conditions.

    All of this is fine and shows progress, but the main roadblock now is the 60 day hold placed on spending any of the money by Sen. Webb (D-VA) who wishes to take a look at the science and reasons behind the decision to connect these three potentially very expensive, new conditions to service in Vietnam.

    On September 23, the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee has scheduled a hearing to examine the reasons and evidence used by Secretary Shinseki to add these three conditions to the list of presumptive diseases related to Agent Orange exposure. Continued

    "What is the difference between an al Qaida terrorist and a misguided American terrorist?" "The planes they fly!"

    by jimstaro on Sun Aug 01, 2010 at 10:57:17 AM PDT

  •  Cluster Bombs: Laos (0+ / 0-)

    As cluster bomb ban takes effect, the view from Laos

    August 1, 2010 The cluster bomb ban – officially known as the Convention on Cluster Munitions – comes into force today. Countries that have ratified the treaty must stop making cluster munitions, dispose of stockpiles, and clear contaminated areas.

    Vansoum Phim Mavong an employee of Mines Advistory Group, searches for unexploded munitions in a field in central Laos. The shells of 'bombies' a nickname for the tennis-ball-sized bomblets, litter fields all over Laos, the most-bombed country in the world per capita. A world-wide cluster bomb ban takes effect Sunday. Jared Feddie

    Khangphaniena Village, Laos The young woman brushes her metal detector over coarse, dry grass in a field near a primary school. Against the sound of children playing, the machine beeps as she searches for unexploded bombs dropped by American aircraft four decades ago.

    Most of those were cluster bombs – shells that open midair scattering tennis-ball-sized "bombies," as they are known all over Laos. About 30 percent of them failed to explode upon impact, and instead remained buried in the earth. On average, one person a day is injured or killed in some part of the country by unexploded ordnance.


    Laos, the most bombed country in the world per capita, strongly backs the treaty. Between 1964 and 1973, the US dropped more than 2 million tons of ordnance in a campaign kept hidden from Congress and the public. Since then, about 20,000 civilians have been maimed or killed by unexploded bombs, according to Legacies of War, a Washington-based group that raises awareness about America's "secret war" in Laos.


    Indeed, figures show a dramatic contrast between the amount the US spent bombing Laos and the amount spent clearing away their lethal legacy. The US currently contributes about $5 million per year to cleanup efforts. Every single day for nine years it spent about $17 million (in today's dollars) bombing Laos, according to Legacies of War. Continued

    "What is the difference between an al Qaida terrorist and a misguided American terrorist?" "The planes they fly!"

    by jimstaro on Sun Aug 01, 2010 at 03:16:20 PM PDT

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