Newsletter August 2014

Nonlethal Security
for Peace Campaign


This is the fourth Newsletter of our campaign. The newsletter comes out
periodically. Because your time is valuable, the newsletter is brief. You don’t
need to keep this – all editions are available on the website


The Nonlethal Security for Peace Campaign (NLSPC) aims to reduce death and injury
in warfare (and other conflicts) by using non-damaging technology (more info on
the website).


The NLSPC is making progress but recognition is slow. There’s agreement that
nonlethal methods seem logical. Military and security organisations associated
with the European Symposium on Non-Lethal Weapons (see below) continue their
research and development.


It’s lethal warfare as usual. As I write this the Syrian conflict continues, with
well over 100,000 people killed and over 2.8 million refugees.  ISIL/ISIS
jihadis are fighting in Northern Iraq with deaths already in the thousands. Nearly two thousand Palestinians have been killed as Israeli troops continue their invasion of Gaza. In Eastern Ukraine the bodies of nearly 300 civilians have been retrieved following the shooting down of a Malaysian airliner by a ground-to-air missile. The Russian backed
separatists who fired the missile had probably intended to down a military
transport plane, with the loss of a few crew. The tragic death of so many
innocent civilians illustrates the danger from accident and the stupidity of
lethal warfare.

We have four different scenarios sharing one common feature – the senseless
assault on human beings employing speeding pieces of metal, burning gases and
shock waves. In summary: tragic, primitive
and stupid technology.


A symposium on non-lethal weapons is held in Europe every two years. The next
European Symposium is scheduled for 18-20 May 2015 in Ettlingen (near
Karlsruhe) Germany. The theme for the symposium will be “to examine the
obstacles still faced in fielding non-lethal technologies: assessment of
effectiveness and safety, legal hurdles, public opinion objections (and)
operators’ trust”. The closing date for abstracts is 6 October 2014. For more details go to .

New Director at Non-lethal Weapons Program

The US Defense Force’s Non-lethal
Weapons Program
is the largest organisation currently involved with
nonlethal security technology. It has an active research, development and
training program. Col. Michael A. Coolican has recently taken up the role of
Director of the NLW Directorate (see

Recommended reading

War – What’s it Good For? by Ian Morris. This book provides a
detailed but lively summary of the origins of war and its development through
the ages. It provides an excellent background to the technology of
warfare  – central issues to nonlethal security. You may not agree with
the author’s argument that war, despite its horrors, has been necessary to
progress – but it’s certainly an interesting and challenging assertion.

Recent Press

Iraq, Rwanda and Rosetta: The Case For A Kinder War

With modern technology, casualties of war can be drastically reduced. And yet the
numbers are climbing. Andrew Greig makes the case for a gentler approach. (New Matilda 15 July

Questions and Comments

If you have any questions or comments please contact us at .

Contributions to the Newsletter Invited

We are inviting contributions to the next (and following) newsletter(s) on the
topic of nonlethal security/nonlethal weapons. These might include reports of
new research, field experiences, upcoming events and general comments. Please
keep them brief (a few hundred words) with contact details for further
information, if appropriate. Send to .

That’s all for the moment.

The Nonlethal
Security for Peace Campaign Newsletter – August


Editor – Andrew Greig

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