Pain Compliance --- experimenting on the Afghan lab rats.

Afghan Pain Compliance

by digby

I've been writing for a while about the new "pain compliance" weapons, the most famous being the taser, of course. In this post I talked about a number of the new ones and what I perceive to be the rationale behind them.

According to WIRED, there is a possibility that they are testing one of them in Afghanistan:

The U.S. mission in Afghanistan centers around swaying locals to its side. And there’s no better persuasion tool than an invisible pain ray that makes people feel like they’re on fire.

OK, OK. Maybe that isn’t precisely the logic being employed those segments of the American military who would like to deploy the Active Denial System to Afghanistan. I’m sure they’re telling themselves that the generally non-lethal microwave weapon is a better, safer crowd control alternative than an M-16. But those ray-gun advocates better think long and hard about the Taliban’s propaganda bonanza when news leaks of the Americans zapping Afghans until they feel roasted alive.

Because, apparently, the Active Denial System is “in Afghanistan for testing.”

An Air Force military officer and a civilian employee at the Air Force Research Laboratory are just two of the people telling our pal Sharon Weinberger that the vehicle-mounted “block 2″ version of the pain ray is in the warzone, but hasn’t been used in combat.

The military wrote in to WIRED and said they are not "currently" testing there. The spokesperson also reassured the writer that the pain isn't really all that bad, so that's good.

Setting aside the fact that using a "pain ray" in general is a horrible idea, how much more horrible is it to use in a country that already sees itself invaded by men who look like robot insects and where unmanned planes kill targets from a distance? It's hard not to see that as a weapons laboratory on a people who have no means to protest.

The good news is that once they test their efficacy, pain ray machines are coming to a protest near you. Of course, we're being softened up already with taser comedy and a long indoctrination to police inflicting pain to achieve compliance (even if it kills us.) By the time they deploy the ADS, most people in this country will be completely comfortable with such Big Brother tactics. Indeed, they already see them as a compassionate and benign approach to law enforcement. The rising death toll doesn't seem to bother anyone at all.