Thermobaric Weapons

Whatever you think about the war
on a recent day Sputnik
published a video headlined:
“Russia’s Defense Ministry has published footage
showing TOS-1A Solntsepyok heavy flamethrower
systems in action.”

The clip revealed a battery of tubes
arrayed on a tank-like vehicle
which spewed forth a fusillade of long-distance
air-borne Flame-Thrower Explosives!!!

My father in the early ’40s
worked in a defense plant
where they made napalm

He told us how it worked
—a jellied gasoline that clung to your flesh
& burned you to death.

And then in the newsreels shown
in the movie theaters those years
there was footage of U.S. soldiers
flame-throwing Japanese in caves
in the Pacific—
horribile visu

& now in the 2000s a Russian company
has updated this with the “TOS
heavy Thermobaric Flamethrower” systems

hurling rockets for a couple of miles
which then disperse a cloud of flammable liquid
around a target
which then ignites
& sizzles & destroys
targets such as people hidden in caves or bunkers.

The TOS’s developers
call these “the most devastating explosive weapons
short of tactical nuclear weapons around.”

And these are being used RIGHT NOW in the
Russia-US-Ukraine war!!

Come on, Russia!!!  Give up use of

Ugh!  No air-borne flamethrowers!!!
No Thermobaric Skin-Sizzlers from Above!!!
And of course, “No more Napalm, no more Nagasakis.”!!!

Ed Sanders is a poet, musician and writer. He founded Fuck You: a Magazine of the Arts, as well as the Fugs. He edits the Woodstock Journal. His books include: The Family, Sharon Tate: a Life and the novel Tales of Beatnik Glory.