FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

National Academy of Sciences Withholds Key Information on Moscow Theater Tragedy

by CounterPunch Wire

The US National Academies of Science holds key unclassified US military research documents that shed light on the Moscow theater tragedy; but is refusing to release them despite repeated, urgent requests. (A selected bibliography of the documents is included at the end of this release.)

Said the Sunshine Project’s Edward Hammond “The world has an urgent need to better understand what happened in Moscow and what other countries, including the US, are doing with these kinds of weapons. The National Academies ongoing refusal to release the documents is very troubling.” Hammond adds “NAS has critical information for understanding the chemical agents used in Moscow; but is refusing to release it because it wants to avoid embarrassing the Pentagon, which denies that this type of research exists in the United States.”

The documents are a series of papers written in 1994 by US Army chemical warfare experts on so-called “calmative” chemical weapons. The set of reports includes a paper on synthetic opiate weapons of the class reported to have killed more than 100 people in the Moscow theater. In 2001, these documents were deposited at the National Academies by the US Marine Corps, which asked NAS to evaluate this kind of weapon. The documents are deposited in a public archive which, according to US law, should be available for inspection by journalists and members of the public.

The US Army documents describe research and testing of chemical agents at Edgewood Research and Development Center at Aberdeen Proving Grounds north of Baltimore, Maryland. In addition, NAS is withholding documents from the US Joint Non-Lethal Weapons Directorate (JNLWD), a Pentagon agency exploring calmative chemical weapons. These include the report of a “non-lethal” weapons policy seminar held in 2001 between US and United Kingdom officials, in which they discussed military operations with chemical weapons like those used in the theater.

The Sunshine Project has been seeking the release of this information since well before the Moscow tragedy. It began its investigation a year and half ago, and first asked NAS for the documents in March.

NAS is trying to defuse the situation by forestalling release until November 5th, US election day, when it hopes that nobody will notice. NAS must place public interest and law before its desire to ingratiate itself with the Pentagon. “Anything less,” says Hammond “would call into question the Academies role as an independent scientific advisor an chemical and biological weapons issues”

Selected Documents in the NAS Public Access Records File:

Ferguson, C. Parker. 1994. “Antipersonnel Chemical Immobilizers: Synthetic Opioids,” U.S. Army Edgewood Research, Development and Engineering Center, Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD (NSB log #ONR-NLW.087).

Ferguson, C. Parker. 1994. “Demonstration of Chemical Immobilizers,” U.S. Army Edgewood Research, Development and Engineering Center, Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD (NSB log #ONRNLW.086).

Ferguson, C. Parker. 1994. “Antipersonnel Calmative Agents,” U.S. Army Edgewood Research, Development and Engineering Center, Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD (NSB log #ONR-NLW.085).

Ferguson, C. Parker. 1994. “Antipersonnel Chemical Immobilizers: Sedatives,” U.S. Army Edgewood Research, Development and Engineering Center, Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD (NSB log #ONR-NLW.084).

Report. “US/UK Non-Lethal Weapons (NLW)/Urban Operations) Policy Seminar,” JNLWP, January 19-20, 2001 (NSB log #ONR-NLW.029).

Department of Navy. November 30, 1998. “Preliminary Legal Review of Proposed Chemical-Based Nonlethal Weapons,” DON (NSB log #ONR-NLW.042).

For More Information Contact:

Edward Hammond director of The Sunshine Project, based in Austin, Texas. He can be reached at: hammond@sunshine-project.org

 

 

More articles by:

CounterPunch Magazine

minimag-edit

Weekend Edition
September 23, 2016
Friday - Sunday
Andrew Levine
The Meaning of the Trump Surge
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: More Pricks Than Kicks
Mike Whitney
Oh, Say Can You See the Carnage? Why Stand for a Country That Can Gun You Down in Cold Blood?
Chris Welzenbach
The Diminution of Chris Hayes
Vincent Emanuele
The Riots Will Continue
Rob Urie
A Scam Too Far
Pepe Escobar
Les Deplorables
Patrick Cockburn
Airstrikes, Obfuscation and Propaganda in Syria
Timothy Braatz
The Quarterback and the Propaganda
Sheldon Richman
Obama Rewards Israel’s Bad Behavior
Libby Lunstrum - Patrick Bond
Militarizing Game Parks and Marketing Wildlife are Unsustainable Strategies
Andy Thayer
More Cops Will Worsen, Not Help, Chicago’s Violence Problem
Louis Yako
Can Westerners Help Refugees from War-torn Countries?
David Rosen
Rudy Giuliani & Trump’s Possible Cabinet
Joyce Nelson
TISA and the Privatization of Public Services
Pete Dolack
Global Warming Will Accelerate as Oceans Reach Limits of Remediation
Franklin Lamb
34 Years After the Sabra-Shatila Massacre
Cesar Chelala
How One Man Held off Nuclear War
Norman Pollack
Sovereign Immunity, War Crimes, and Compensation to 9/11 Families
Lamont Lilly
Standing Rock Stakes Claim for Sovereignty: Eyewitness Report From North Dakota
Barbara G. Ellis
A Sandernista Priority: Push Bernie’s Planks!
Hiroyuki Hamada
How Do We Dream the Dream of Peace Together?
Russell Mokhiber
From Rags and Robes to Speedos and Thongs: Why Trump is Crushing Clinton in WV
Julian Vigo
Living La Vida Loca
Aidan O'Brien
Where is Europe’s Duterte? 
Abel Cohen
Russia’s Improbable Role in Everything
Ron Jacobs
A Change Has Gotta’ Come
Uri Avnery
Shimon Peres and the Saga of Sisyphus
Graham Peebles
Ethiopian’s Crying out for Freedom and Justice
Robert Koehler
Stop the Killing
Thomas Knapp
Election 2016: Of Dog Legs and “Debates”
Yves Engler
The Media’s Biased Perspective
Victor Grossman
Omens From Berlin
Christopher Brauchli
Wells Fargo as Metaphor for the Trump Campaign
Nyla Ali Khan
War of Words Between India and Pakistan at the United Nations
Tom Barnard
Block the Bunker! Historic Victory Against Police Boondoggle in Seattle
James Rothenberg
Bullshit Recognition as Survival Tactic
Ed Rampell
A Tale of Billionaires & Ballot Bandits
Kristine Mattis
Persnickety Publishing Pet-Peeves
Charles R. Larson
Review: Helen Dewitt’s “The Last Samurai”
David Yearsley
Torture Chamber Music
September 22, 2016
Dave Lindorff
Wells Fargo’s Stumpf Leads the Way
Stan Cox
If There’s a World War II-Style Climate Mobilization, It has to Go All the Way—and Then Some
Binoy Kampmark
Source Betrayed: the Washington Post and Edward Snowden
John W. Whitehead
Wards of the Nanny State
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail