TBR News February 26, 2018

Feb 26 2018

The Voice of the White House 

Washington, D.C. February 25, 2018:”Guest editorial by Christian Jürs:

NUMBER 2905.17

June 13, 2017  USD(I)

SUBJECT: DoD Domestic Military Order-Counterinsurgency Overview : See Enclosure 1


What is a domestic  insurgency? The Department of Defense (DOD) defines domestic insurgency as “an organized movement aimed at the overthrow of a constituted government through use of subversion and armed conflict.” Simply put, a domestic  insurgency is a struggle between a non-ruling group and their ruling authority. Domestic insurgents use political resources, to include the increased use of the media and international opinion, as well as violence to destroy the political legitimacy of the ruling authority and build their  own political legitimacy and power. Examples of this type of warfare range from the American Revolution to the previous situations in Iraq and Afghanistan. The conflict itself can range from acts of terrorism to the more conventional use of the media to sway public opinion. Whatever form the insurgency takes, it serves an ideology or political goal.

Some of the motivating factors in the current politico/sociological situation are:

a.Massive and continuing unemployment in all levels of American business and industry.

b.Only those who are technically proficient, i.e. in fields of computer science, are employable.

c.Another point of contention is the huge influx of illegal foreign immigrants and the perception that these prevent Americans from obtaining work and also are perceived as draining the national welfare rolls.

d.Also, a growing functional illiteracy in the American public, which has sharply diminished the reading of newspapers and increased the popularity of the Internet with its brief “sound bites.”A growing public perception of both disinterest and corruption on the part of National and State legislators has caused massive disillusionment on the part of the people.

e.The recent revelations that the American (and foreign) public is closely watched and spied upon by governmental organs at the behest of the President has created a very volatile and very negative attitude towards any and all official programs.




The decisive operation is preventing any population support for the insurgents.

Supporting operations focus on preventing any popular support for the insurgents.

Secure vital infrastructure using local personnel as the security force.

  • All firearms, to include pistols, rifles and shotguns, to be seized and impounded.
  • No ammunition to be sold and any found .to be confiscated.
  • National ID card to be carried by all American citizens and carried at all times
  • All unemployed Americans to be inducted into a CCC type organization and put to work on public projects like forest clearance, road work, governmental construction projects. Youths between 18 and 25 will be inducted and then sent to work projects sufficiently distant from their homes to discourage and prevent desertions, escapes, etc.
  • Certain breeds of dogs, such as German Shepherds, Pit Bulls and Rottweilers will be subject to confiscation and euthanasia
  • Citizens on Social Security or other governmental support programs must present the National ID card in order to collect benefits
  • All current US passports will be revoked and new ones with tracking chips embedded in them will be issued.
  • It shall be strictly forbidden to make or fly any kind of radio controlled aircraft, under penalty of law.
  • The possession or wearing of any garment or covering designed to deflect infrared observation shall be prohibited by law.’”





Table of Contents

  • Supreme Court rejects Trump over ‘Dreamers’ immigrants
  • U.S. appeals court says Title VII covers discrimination based on sexual orientation
  • Trump’s Budget Is a Bonanza for Hawks
  • Koch Document Reveals Laundry List of Policy Victories Extracted from the Trump Administration
  • Interview with Poland’s Prime Minister: ‘Europe Has Run Out of Gas’
  • In the Turk-Syrian-Kurd Dance, the U.S. Has Two Left Feet
  • Russia announces Syria ceasefire to establish ‘humanitarian corridor’ in Eastern Ghouta
  • Bitcoin plunges below $10,000 as major crypto exchange to share user details with US tax authorities


Supreme Court rejects Trump over ‘Dreamers’ immigrants

February 26, 2018

by Lawrence Hurley and Andrew Chung


WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday dealt a setback to President Donald Trump, requiring his administration to maintain protections he has sought to end for hundreds of thousands of immigrants brought illegally into the United States as children.

The justices refused to hear the administration’s appeal of a federal judge’s Jan. 9 nationwide injunction that halted Trump’s move to rescind a program that benefits immigrants known as “Dreamers” implemented in 2012 by his Democratic predecessor, Barack Obama.

The protections were due to start phasing out beginning in March under the Republican president’s action, announced in September.

Under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, roughly 700,000 young adult, mostly Hispanics, are protected from deportation and given work permits for two-year periods, after which they must re-apply. Congress so far has failed to pass legislation to address the fate of the “Dreamers,” including a potential path to citizenship.

San Francisco-based U.S. District Judge William Alsup ruled last month that DACA must remain in place while litigation over the legality of Trump’s action is resolved, prompting the administration’s unusual appeal bypassing a federal appeals court and going directly to the Supreme Court.

“The DACA program — which provides work permits and myriad government benefits to illegal immigrants en masse — is clearly unlawful. The district judge’s decision to unilaterally re-impose a program that Congress had explicitly and repeatedly rejected is a usurpation of legislative authority,” White House spokesman Raj Shah said.

“We look forward to having this case expeditiously heard by the appeals court and, if necessary, the Supreme Court, where we fully expect to prevail,” Shah added.

The administration argued that Obama exceeded his powers under the Constitution when he bypassed Congress and created DACA.

Alsup ruled that the challengers, including the states of California, Maine, Maryland and Minnesota and Obama’s former homeland security secretary Janet Napolitano, were likely to succeed in arguing that the administration’s decision to end DACA was arbitrary.

In a brief order, the Supreme Court justices did not explain their reasoning, but said the appeal was “denied without prejudice,” indicating they will maintain an open mind on the underlying legal issue still being considered by a lower court, the San Francisco-based 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. The high court also said it expects the lower court to “proceed expeditiously to decide this case.”


California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, a Democrat, called the administration’s bid to bypass the 9th Circuit, which has ruled against Trump on other matters, “unusual and unnecessary.”

“We look forward to explaining to the Ninth Circuit court that DACA is fully legal. For the sake of the Dreamers who help make our economy and our state strong, the rescission of DACA should not be allowed to stand,” Becerra said in a statement.

The DACA dispute is the latest major case brought to the Supreme Court for its consideration arising from Trump’s immigration policies. The justices are due to hear arguments in April on the legality of his latest travel ban order barring entry to people from several Muslim-majority nations.

Greisa Martinez, a DACA recipient who works in Washington with the immigrants’ rights group United We Dream, said she was grateful the Supreme Court’s action gave people already enrolled in the program more time, but said most young immigrants who are eligible for the protections have not signed up.

“We need a permanent solution now,” Martinez told reporters. “This back and forth on DACA and the legislative process has created a crisis in our community.”

Justice Department spokesman Devin O‘Malley said in a statement that “while we were hopeful for a different outcome,” the high court rarely agrees to take up cases before a lower court has ruled, “though in our view it was warranted for the extraordinary injunction requiring the Department of Homeland Security to maintain DACA.”

Trump’s move to rescind DACA prompted legal challenges by Democratic state attorneys general and various organizations and individuals in multiple federal courts.

On Feb. 13, a second U.S. judge issued a similar injunction ordering the administration to keep DACA in place. U.S. District Judge Nicholas Garaufis in Brooklyn acted in a lawsuit brought by plaintiffs including a group of states led by New York.

Judges Alsup and Garaufis did not say that the administration could not at some point end the program, only that there was evidence it did not follow the correct procedures in doing so.

The rulings allow those who had previously applied for protections and whose two-year status was soon to expire to apply beyond the deadline set by the administration in September. The original plan put on hold by the court rulings said that only those who re-applied by October and whose status was due to expire by March 5 could re-apply.

The administration is not processing new applications.

Reporting by Lawrence Hurley and Andrew Chung; Additional reporting by Steve Holland in Washington and Mica Rosenberg in New York; Editing by Will Dunham


U.S. appeals court says Title VII covers discrimination based on sexual orientation

February 26, 2018

by Daniel Wiessner


A U.S. appeals court in Manhattan on Monday ruled that a federal law banning sex bias in the workplace also prohibits discrimination against gay employees, becoming only the second court to do so.

The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals overruled prior decisions and said that a worker’s sex is necessarily a factor in discrimination based on sexual orientation.

The ruling went against a court brief filed by the Trump administration in 2017 that said Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was not intended to provide protections to gay workers.

The 2nd Circuit revived a lawsuit by the estate of Donald Zarda, a former skydiving instructor on Long Island who said he was fired after he told a customer he was gay and she complained. Zarda’s estate was backed in the appeal by dozens of large companies, including Alphabet Inc’s Google, Microsoft Corp, CBS Corp and Viacom Inc.

Zarda died in a BASE-jumping accident after the lawsuit was filed.

Zarda’s former employer, Altitude Express Inc, and companies that have faced similar lawsuits have argued that when Congress adopted Title VII more than 50 years ago, it did not consider whether the law’s ban on sex bias included discrimination based on sexual orientation.

But lesbian, bisexual, gay and transgender groups and the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission have increasingly argued that sexual orientation is a function of a person’s gender.

The 2nd Circuit agreed on Monday in its 10-3 decision. Circuit Judge Robert Katzmann wrote that even though Congress had not sought to address gay bias in Title VII, laws ”often go beyond the principal evil to cover reasonably comparable evils.”

Saul Zabell, a lawyer for Altitude Express, said he agreed with the ruling on Title VII. But he said Zarda did not face discrimination when he worked for the company.

Lawyers for Zarda’s estate did not respond to a request for comment.

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, a Democrat who filed a court brief supporting Zarda, praised the decision in a statement.

“No employer should be able to penalize its employees because of who they love,” Schneiderman said.

Last April, the Chicago-based 7th U.S. Circuit became the first court to find that Title VII bans gay bias in the workplace.

The U.S. Supreme Court in December declined to take up a different case out of Georgia that posed the same question.

Editing by Jonathan Oatis


Trump’s Budget Is a Bonanza for Hawks

February 22, 2018

by Christopher A. Preble

The National Interest

The Trump administration released its budget for FY 2019 on Monday, and the reviews are in: military spending advocates are pleased and deficit hawks are dismayed. The top line steers $716 billion to various national security functions. The Pentagon will get $617 billion in its base budget, plus $69 billion to pay for the ongoing wars. Spending on nuclear weapons tucked away in the Department of Energy makes up most of the rest. Over the next five years, the Trump administration expects to spend $3.6 trillion on the nation’s military.

The size of the active-duty force will rise by 25,900, and there is more money for operations and maintenance. Funds for the procurement of new equipment will grow by nearly $19 billion, a 14.9 percent increase over 2018. The details reveal a smorgasbord of spending going to the nation’s defense contractors:

– $10.7 billion for seventy-seven F-35 Joint Strike Fighters

– $2 billion for twenty-four F/A-18s

– $7.4 billion for two new Virginia-class submarines

– $6 billion for three Arleigh Burke–class destroyers

– $2.3 billion for the B-21, the long-range strike bomber that will eventually replace B-1s and B-2s

– $3 billion for fifteen K-46 refueling tankers; and

– $900 million for six new presidential helicopters.

Speaking of POTUS’s air travel, two new Air Force Ones “are still projected to cost $4 billion,” reports DefenseOne’s Marcus Weisgerber, “despite President Trump’s claims he negotiated with Boeing to take $1 billion off the price tag.”

Lastly, not to be outdone, the Missile Defense Agency is requesting $9.9 billion, a 20 percent increase over last year.

President Trump boasted “we took care of the military like it’s never been taken care of before.” According to the president, Secretary of Defense James Mattis gushed “Wow, I can’t believe I got everything we wanted.”

The SecDef didn’t confirm the president’s account of this conversation, but did tell reporters traveling with him to Europe this week that the new budget would “bring us back to a position of primacy.”

It’s not clear that we ever left. U.S. military spending, in real, inflation-adjusted dollars, remains well above the Cold War–average, even under the modicum of spending restraint imposed by the bipartisan Budget Control Act (BCA) passed in 2011. Indeed, as CSIS’s Todd Harrison notes, the increase “comes on top of a budget that was already higher than the peak of the Reagan buildup.”

We shouldn’t be fooled, in other words, by Pentagon CFO and comptroller David Norquist’s claim that defense spending has fallen well below the rate of inflation. That is only true if one ignores the massive drawdowns from Iraq and later Afghanistan. Most of the decline in military spending since 2011 can be attributed to the sensible decision to reduce the nation’s losses in these open-ended conflicts—though both Presidents Obama and Trump ultimately opted not to cut these losses entirely. The rest of the Pentagon’s budget has continued to rise, while the force has grown smaller.

During this period of supposed austerity and restraint, the United States expanded existing wars, launched new ones, and doubled down on policies aimed at discouraging U.S. allies from doing more to defend themselves and their interests. President Trump, in particular, has significantly expanded U.S. military operations around the world, an apparent contradiction to his “America First” rhetoric. Meanwhile, Barack Obama also gave the U.S. military plenty to do, despite his instinct to not do “stupid s—.”

Unsurprisingly, America’s soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines, have been feeling the strain. The modest spending discipline imposed by the BCA, combined with a still-high operational tempo, compelled U.S. military personnel to do more with less.

You might think that someone in a position of authority in Washington, when confronting a massive fiscal hole, would opt for refocusing the U.S. military on those missions that are essential to U.S. national security. Instead, military spending hawks dug in their heels, refused to prioritize, or shed burdens to other capable actors, and waited for additional taxpayer dollars to make up the means-ends shortfall.

With the Trump budget, they’ve gotten their wish. But the victory may prove short-lived. Our debt-fueled spending binge, after all, is sustainable only so long as the buyers of paper believe that Uncle Sam will honor the financial commitments underlying them. And, with domestic spending already consuming a larger and larger share of total federal outlays, a rise in interest rates could pose a greater threat to the Pentagon than China or ISIS.

Koch Document Reveals Laundry List of Policy Victories Extracted from the Trump Administration

February 25 2018

by Lee Fang and Nick Surgey

The Intercept

In the backdrop of a chaotic first year of Donald Trump’s presidency, the conservative Koch brothers have won victory after victory in their bid to reshape American government to their interests.

Documents obtained by The Intercept and Documented show that the network of wealthy donors led by billionaire industrialists Charles and David Koch have taken credit for a laundry list of policy achievements extracted from the Trump administration and their allies in Congress.

The donors have pumped campaign contributions not only to GOP lawmakers, but also to an array of third-party organizations that have pressured officials to act swiftly to roll back limits on pollution, approve new pipeline projects, and extend the largest set of upper-income tax breaks in generations.

“This year, thanks in part to research and outreach efforts across institutions, we have seen progress on many regulatory priorities this Network has championed for years,” the memo notes. The document highlights environmental issues that the Koch brothers have long worked to undo, such as the EPA Clean Power Plan, which is currently under the process of being formally repealed, and Trump’s withdrawal from the Paris Climate Agreement, among their major accomplishments. The memo also highlighted administration efforts to walk back planned rules to strengthen the estate tax in a list of 13 regulatory decisions favored by the network.

The network’s political operation includes a polling and research outfit, Capitol Hill lobbyists, several hundred field staff, groups designed to air campaign ads, and an assortment of grassroots groups set up to appeal to certain constituencies. The LIBRE Initiative is a network group geared toward selling Koch policy ideas to Latino communities. Generation Opportunity works to reach out to millennials and college students; Veterans For America for veterans and military-minded voters.

To win support for the Republican tax legislation, the Koch network claims that it organized over 100 rallies in 36 states, contacted over 1.8 million activists, and knocked on over 33,000 doors. The group also spent freely on digital and television advertisements, with $1.6 million in TV spots to support the legislation in Wisconsin alone.

As The Intercept previously reported, the Koch network told its surrogates to downplay concern over the deficit, a major issue they raised during the Obama administration, in order to convince lawmakers to support the package.

Days after the tax bill passed, Charles Koch and his wife donated $500,000 to Speaker Paul Ryan’s joint fundraising leadership PAC, which has a heightened threshold for donations.

Despite some public antagonism over Trump — including flirtations with replacing him as the nominee with Ryan at the Republican National Convention —  the Koch brothers have enjoyed incredible access with his administration. The president’s lawyer, Don McGahn; the president’s chief liaison to Congress, Marc Short; and the president’s counselor, Kellyanne Conway all previously worked for the Koch network before taking their current positions in the White House. Ethics forms reveal that officials across the government, including at the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Energy, previously served at Koch think tanks or other Koch groups. Vice President Mike Pence also maintains a very close relationship with the Koch brothers.

The Koch brothers are also hoping to fundamentally reshape other aspects of American society, including labor unions and the judiciary.

The memo details efforts to weaken the power of labor unions, including a broad attack on private sector labor unions in states controlled by Republicans in 2017. Meanwhile, the memo notes that the Trump administration has shelved a number of Obama-era rules that were viewed as too friendly to workers and labor unions, including the Overtime Rule and the Joint Employer Rule. The latter would have reduced the barriers for workers at franchise businesses, like fast food outlets, to form a union.

“Labor reform is not an overnight process; advancing major federal labor reform requires a long-term strategy,” it adds. To that point, the Koch network plans to press forward with the Employee Rights Act, legislation to extend right-to-work laws nationally and set up new barriers for labor activists hoping to form new unions.

The memo notes that they believe Justice Anthony Kennedy will soon retire, and the effort to replace him will be “far more contentious” than the effort to confirm Justice Neil Gorsuch.

“If President Trump nominates a principled, constructionist nominee for Justice Kennedy’s seat or any other vacant seat, we anticipate engaging with both grassroots and under-the-dome tactics, bringing paid and earned media and events to support the confirmation.” The memo notes that the network sponsored pressure effort on Sens. Joe Manchin, D-W.V., Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D.; and Joe Donnelly, D-Ind., all of whom eventually voted to confirm Gorsuch.

In Indian Wells, California, last month, the network held a retreat with 700 donors. Several journalists were invited to attend as long as they promised not to name the donors present.

Operatives from the network also led sessions to explain how to move forward into the midterm elections. The Koch brothers intend to spend $400 million to preserve the Republican majority in Congress and maintain GOP power at the state level.

In recent days, Koch network groups have purchased ads targeting Democratic lawmakers in key elections across the country. This week, a new ad began airing in Missouri criticizing Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill, who is up for re-election this year.

“We’ve made more progress in the last five years than I had in the last 50,” Charles Koch reportedly said. “The capabilities we have now can take us to a whole new level.”



Interview with Poland’s Prime Minister: ‘Europe Has Run Out of Gas’

In an interview, new Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki discusses his country’s reputation problems, EU proceedings against Warsaw, Poland’s controversial refugee policy and the heated debate over history.

Interview Conducted by Jan Puhl

February 20, 2018

DER SPIEGEL: Mr. Prime Minister, since your party, Law and Justice (PiS), has been in power in Warsaw, Poland has suffered from a bad image. It used to be the model pupil among the new European Union member states, but now it is considered un-democratic, nationalistic and quick-tempered. What happened?

Morawiecki: Those are opinions and not facts. Poland is a democratic nation-state like all the other countries of Europe. And we are pragmatic. We have a problem with a part of the European political elite and with journalists, but not with the normal people. For example, 97 percent of all foreign investors would come to us again. You are right, though, that we need to make a greater effort to explain our policies. We are facing major changes in Poland. Now, we would like to see the majority of our population benefit from our economic growth. Just because foreign observers used to praise Poland does not mean that the policies of the time were also good for the majority of the population.

DER SPIEGEL: But Poland isn’t being criticized for its social policies or its administrative reforms. It is being criticized because your judicial reform, in the EU’s view, violates the principle of the rule of law. That’s why your country is facing EU proceedings that could end with the loss of voting rights in Brussels.

Morawiecki: We consider this allegation to be false. According to polls, three-quarters of Poles consider the judiciary to be “bad” or “very bad.” We are now improving our communication and have revived the dialogue with the European Commission. We have already achieved improvements and Brussels is now acting more as a partner and less as a schoolmaster. We will also attempt to address the concerns point by point and clarify our position.

DER SPIEGEL: The fact that your country has become the first in the history of the European Union to be subjected to such proceedings is not just due to communications shortcomings. The accusation is that your party wants to control the staffing of the courts.

Morawiecki: We, meaning Poland and the Commission, are absolutely united about the fact that the condition of the Polish justice system is a millstone around our neck. Our courts are completely ineffective, they take a lot of time to reach decisions and they are not transparent. Poland spends three times more on its judges than the average among EU countries. We have 10,000 judges compared to 7,000 in France, a much bigger country. Does Poland want to control the staffing of the courts? No, Poland wants to once again place its judiciary under democratic controls. In Germany, for example, the justices of the highest courts are appointed by a committee for the election of judges. Half of that body is comprised of ministers from the states and the others are members of the Bundestag (the German federal parliament). Furthermore, there was a failure here to discharge judges who were contaminated by the communist era. In former East Germany, after being screened by the Gauck Agency (the Stasi records agency), only 58 percent of the judges and prosecutors could keep their jobs. In Poland, it was 100 percent.

DER SPIEGEL: That was at least 25 years ago. How many of them are even still in office?

Morawiecki: As a young activist with the Solidarity union, I experienced repression myself. And a few of these judges who convicted my comrades-in-arms are still sitting in the highest court. Our reforms make the judicial apparatus more transparent, effective and independent. We now have random assignment of cases to courts in order to minimize suspicions of partiality. We will explain that, and it will hopefully provide the basis for working out a compromise.

DER SPIEGEL: Poland appears in many respects to be removing itself from the core of Europe. The term a “Europe of Nations” is used in your party. What role does Poland want to take within the EU?

Morawiecki: The majority of European societies want a Europe of Nations and not a federation of the United States of Europe. The trans-Atlantic alliance and North America’s alliance with Europe are essential for peace in the world. They guarantee democracy, freedom and prosperity. I would like to see Poland make its contribution so that Europe and the United States continue working together toward these goals. As part of that, we want to be a good, predictable partner here at the eastern flank of the EU, not far from Russia.

DER SPIEGEL: So there is no chance that Poland could leave the EU?

Morawiecki: Correct, it is as unlikely as Germany or France leaving. Like the overwhelming majority of Poles, I am very pro-European. We are pushing, for example, for the development of a joint defense program. We also support working together to close tax loopholes. At the same time, we also believe that Brussels should not create policies that disregard the societal moods in the individual countries. Podemos in Spain, the success of the AfD (Alternative for Germany), Le Pen and Mélenchon in France, Five Star in Italy — there is lava flowing beneath us, there are massive tensions… …

DER SPIEGEL: Do you not count PiS among this group of protest parties?

Morawiecki: I count PiS as being among the parties that want to correct the unjust consequences of the transformation of 1989. We are handing the opportunity for development back to millions of Poles who were excluded by the economic boom. As such, we are channeling discontent. People in Europe should acknowledge that.

DER SPIEGEL: Polls show that the overwhelming majority of Poles are still in favor of the European Union, but also that their great euphoria for the EU has evaporated. What caused that?

Morawiecki: I would say that Europe has run out of gas in terms of ideals. During the post-World War II era, this fuel was the prospect of growth and lower unemployment. Later, it was the integration of the formerly communist countries. People today consider that to be self-evident. Peace, the market economy — that worked for decades, but it is no longer enough. European societies are making that loud and clear. They want fairness and less inequality. I am an idealist. We have to work on new ideas for Europe. For me, that would be things like the question of how we are going to deal with robotization, with accelerated capitalism, with the transformation of our working world through automation and artificial intelligence, and with inequality, which has grown exponentially? Those are the questions of the future, I agree with Thomas Piketty on this …

DER SPIEGEL: … … the French economist and critic of capitalism.

Morawiecki: We have to consider whether there are European answers to these questions. We need a new European partnership agreement.

DER SPIEGEL: You speak of inequality. Why is it such a massive problem for a country with 38 million people and a flourishing economy to take in a few thousand refugees from Syria? Your government has doggedly refused to do so.

Morawiecki: Poland is taking in refugees from the countries to the east of us, from Ukraine.

DER SPIEGEL: Can you really make that comparison? Ukrainians have been coming to Poland for years — they benefit Poland as cheap laborers and are well-integrated.

Morawiecki: The influx has increased five-fold since the war in Ukraine and, particularly from the Donbass region, more and more are coming. They no longer have a roof over their heads and they have often lost family members. This kind of refugee is not even recognized in the West. After our interview, incidentally, I will fly to Lebanon, where I will visit a refugee camp and take considerable financial support along with me. There, in the Syrian border region, Poland is providing for 20,000 refugees. Studies have shown that you can do a better job of helping people there than here by building hospitals and schools. Of all the countries participating in the Economic Resilience Initiative, Poland has given the most money: 50 million euros. It is a project by the European Investment Bank to provide local economic support in the region. I give you my word that we want to do even more. But you also have to keep in mind that forcing intake quotas on a sovereign nation creates societal tensions.

DER SPIEGEL: What do you mean by forcing? The liberal government that preceded yours agreed to the quota in Brussels in 2015.

Morawiecki: You are right about that. But such important decisions that affect sovereignty, the defense of borders and protection from terrorism should not simply be pushed through via a majority votes in the European Council (the powerful EU body that represents the member state governments) and against the reservations in those societies. If a country is incapable of defending its borders, it should not turn it into everybody’s problem.

DER SPIEGEL: By that, you mean Germany?

Morawiecki: Not only. I also want to enter a dialogue on this issue. We want to provide our contribution to refugee policies, and the problem can become significant again at any time. If, for example, Moscow further escalates the conflict in Ukraine. If a second Baltic Sea pipeline is built, as Germany desires, Russia will be able to deliver gas to the West without having to rely on any pipes that go through Ukraine. The country would then be entirely defenseless, and Russia could advance in the east even more aggressively. It could not be ruled out that there would suddenly be millions of refugees at the EU’s eastern flank.

DER SPIEGEL: Can you understand that many Germans consider the Polish position to show a lack of solidarity? On the one hand, you have a Poland that profits from money sent by Brussels. On the other hand, it doesn’t want to help in an emergency.

Morawiecki: At best, I can halfway understand it. Even German politicians, like (Foreign Minister) Sigmar Gabriel, for example, admit that the German economy also benefits from the EU structural aid provided to the new member states. Some 80 percent of the money flows to German companies because they are implementing EU-sponsored construction projects here. In Poland, we know very precisely what solidarity means. It is an important goal, but another is domestic security and policies that are independent and sovereign.

DER SPIEGEL: Is Germany still the most important partner in Europe for your government?

Morawiecki: Yes. There are tensions every now and then — when, for example, a radical article is published here or there. But for me the glass is half full rather than half empty. I have long worked in the business sector and our economic ties are closer than ever. Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary have together become the most important export market for Germany, more important even than France. I want to support this development.

DER SPIEGEL: Poland disclaimed reparations payments from Germany in 1953 for the crimes committed during World War II. Now leading politicians in your party want to demand damages retroactively. What is your position?

Morawiecki: The Sejm (the Polish parliament) just agreed to do another precise calculation of the material damages and the loss of human life. So far, the Poles have received 1 percent of the compensation that citizens in the Western countries or Israel have received. Yet our losses as a share of the total population were the highest in the world.

DER SPIEGEL: Your government introduced a law that makes it a crime to use the term “Polish concentration camp” or statements that attribute any complicity by the Polish nation or government in the Nazi crimes. Is the penal code really the right way to fight historical misrepresentation and cluelessness?

Morawiecki: Yes. Germany and Israel also do this. You can be punished there for denying the Holocaust or incitement. Last year alone, Polish embassies intervened 250 times around the world because someone used the formulation “Polish death camp.” Our Supreme Court is currently giving the law another review to determine if it contains any misleading wording.

DER SPIEGEL: But the plan has been strongly criticized by the Israeli side.

Morawiecki: We are explaining our position and I believe that the Israeli side is growing more understanding toward us. We are noticing that in diplomatic discussions and we are seeing increasingly friendly editorials in the press. Yes, we did have thousands of “Szmalcownicy,” Poles who murdered Jews or betrayed them to the Nazis. At the same time, however, even in occupied Warsaw, hell on earth, 90,000 Catholic Poles helped their Jewish neighbors. The Polish underground state and the London exile government never collaborated with the Nazis. We support precise research into our history.

DER SPIEGEL: Most Germans understand why it is wrong to use the term “Polish concentration camp.” Isn’t your reaction a bit over the top? The term is usually used out of sloppiness and not because Germans want to relativize any guilt. Do you believe, like many of your compatriots, that the Germans don’t want to take responsibility for the crimes of the Nazis?

Morawiecki: The recent statements by Chancellor Angela Merkel and Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel, who have clearly admitted German guilt, show that there is much understanding for our position in Germany.

DER SPIEGEL: The greatest concern of most Poles is neighboring Russia. Vladimir Putin has clearly demonstrated his expansionist desires in Ukraine. At the same time, U.S. foreign policy vis-à-vis Moscow has become unpredictable. Has life become more dangerous in your region?

Morawiecki: We have to take this threat from the east very seriously. That is why we welcome joint defense efforts and perhaps it will even result in a joint army someday — within the framework of NATO.

DER SPIEGEL: Do you feel that the European Union is watching Moscow closely enough?

Morawiecki: No, unfortunately I do not believe so. Russia is not only playing an ominous role in Ukraine, but also in Syria. We want to discuss the problem with the Germans, but also, of course, with France, a nuclear power. But let’s not deceive ourselves: Although we don’t know what policies the White House will choose, we are still under the Americans’ umbrella. In that sense, the Germans are getting a free lunch — they spend little but enjoy full protection. Of course, I do hope that we can come to agreement with the Russians in the future. At the moment, though, it is good to be strong militarily. That makes understanding easier.

DER SPIEGEL: Mr. Prime Minister, we thank you for this interview.



In the Turk-Syrian-Kurd Dance, the U.S. Has Two Left Feet

A new play for nationalism may be leaving America without a partner.

February 26, 2018

by Geoffrey Aronson

The American Conservative

It should be no surprise that Washington’s Syrian Kurdish allies—who have long had daggers drawn and pointed at our fellow NATO member Turkey—are now reconciling with our Syrian enemy President Bashar al-Assad.

Since the outbreak of the Syrian war in 2011, the Kurdish YPG (People’s Protection Units) and its allies, with critical military support from the United States, have occupied three cantons in Syria along the border with Turkey as part of their war against ISIS. Turkey views the Syrian Kurdish forces now in place as in league with the PKK (Kurdistan Workers Party), against whom it has been waging intermittent battles in Turkey for many years.

On January 20, Turkey began a limited military operation to drive out the YPG from the westernmost canton, anchored by Afrin, a town of 35,000. In recent days Damascus, too, has joined the battle in support of its disaffected citizens, sending uniformed irregulars to the front.

It at first seems difficult to understand the (so far) limited skirmishes between all these players. But while the battlefield may be messy, it’s not impossible to break down. A new chapter in the struggle for Syria is unfolding, and Washington’s nominal allies in its war against ISIS are looking to their futures. For the estranged Kurds, that means continuing efforts to improve the terms under which their minority in Syria is ruled from Damascus.

The engagement between those at the center of political and military power and those disenfranchised on its periphery has been at the heart of Arab politics—not only in Syria—since its nations achieved independence. This is a very, very long story, sometimes bloody, that will not end soon—and maybe not ever.

The U.S. all too often simplifies such complexities into manageable caricatures, pitting Kurds against Arabs, Sunnis against Shias, Turks against Kurds, ad nauseam. Such shorthand obscures more than it clarifies, but it befits a player with a limited time horizon and no essential vital national interest in the outcome. Really, does the fate of the nation depend on whose writ runs in Afrin?

The U.S. all too often constructs policy choices framed by a contest between good guys and bad guys. And by definition, Washington is always on the side of the angels. But reality, in Syria and elsewhere, is always a more frustrating interplay between shades of gray, and Washington is not good at shades of gray. Certainly not in the dusty hilltops of Afrin along the border with Turkey, where all the white hats are soiled beyond recognition.

The goal the Trump administration hopes to achieve by arming the Kurds—arms that have now been turned on Turkey!—is to improve Washington’s ability to undermine the postwar power of the regime by impeding the restoration of its sovereign authority throughout the country. The Kurds, however, have no place to go but Syria, and no regime but the one in Damascus, from which they were never totally estranged. Geography will win out, long after Washington tires of its good works and pulls up its stakes, no matter how long it takes.

Neither Ankara nor Damascus can abide a Kurdish enclave comprising 20 percent of Syria—the Turks because of historical concerns about Kurdish irredentism in Turkey, the Syrians because of the national security imperative to rule its sovereign territory.

Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s military offensive has forced the YPG—and more broadly the question of the Kurdish minority’s place in postwar Syria—back onto the regime, which is exactly where Ankara, Moscow, and Baghdad want it. This in itself is quite an achievement.

Almost as if it were choreographed, the deployment of Turks, which features ragtag elements of what remains of the Syrian opposition, has prompted Washington-armed and -supported YPG forces east of the Euphrates, and even some Iraqi Kurds, to take their war to the front, courtesy of Assad’s influence. All sides are huffing and puffing. But while Turkish and Syrian deployments are small and ambiguous enough to force everyone to pay attention, they do not represent a decision to go to war.

There is a method to this madness. A wider war would represent a breakdown of the consensus (with the prominent exception of Washington) in favor of restoring sovereign Syrian authority all along the border with Turkey. As the YPG and, more broadly, the Kurdish minority in northeast Syria contemplate their postwar future, by preference and circumstance they know that there is no real option but to reconcile with Damascus. The Turkish incursion has forced the recognition of this reality.

Explaining the call for Syrian government intervention on its behalf, a YPG statement noted that:

The Syrian government responded to the invitation, answered the call of duty and sent military units today, February 20, to take up positions on the borders, and participate in defending the territorial unity of Syria and its borders.

In the same vein, Syria’s state media reported that pro-Damascus forces would head to Afrin to “join the resistance against the Turkish aggression.”

“This comes in the framework of supporting residents and defending the territorial unity and sovereignty of Syria,” the news agency SANA said.



Russia announces Syria ceasefire to establish ‘humanitarian corridor’ in Eastern Ghouta

The Russian president has ordered a new ceasefire to allow civilians to exit one of Syria’s last rebel strongholds. The UN has urged warring parties to end hostilities to allow much-needed aid into devastated areas.

February 26, 2018


Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday ordered a daily “humanitarian pause” to airstrikes in Eastern Ghouta near Damascus, said Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, according to Russian news agencies.

The ceasefire comes amid calls from the international community to implement a nationwide cessation of hostilities as the humanitarian situation worsens on the ground.

What the ceasefire entails:

The ceasefire is aimed at establishing a “humanitarian corridor” to allow civilians to exit from Eastern Ghouta, considered one of Syria’s last rebel strongholds.

It will begin on Tuesday and last from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. local time (07:00 to 12:00 UTC), according to the order.

In agreement with the Syrian regime, the Russian Defense Ministry said it will help evacuate the sick and injured.

Massive casualties: Over the past week, more than 500 civilians have been killed by the Syrian government’s latest offensive in Eastern Ghouta. Russian warplanes formed an integral part of the offensive, according to independent monitors, rights groups and US authorities.

Why now: As the conflict winds down, Damascus is attempting to consolidate territory across the country with the help of Russia to secure its interests during peace talks.

Given that Eastern Ghouta is one of the last remaining rebel strongholds, the Syrian regime is seeking to strike a fatal blow to the opposition movement before peace talks gain ground.

Calls for ceasefire: With a growing civilian death toll, the international community has urged all warring parties to enact a nationwide ceasefire. On Saturday, the UN Security Council voted unanimously in favor of a 30-day humanitarian ceasefire.

Better than nothing: Stephane Dujarric, spokesman for UN chief Antonio Guterres, responded to the announcement, saying: “Five hours is better than no hours but we would like to see any cessation of hostilities be extended.”

Seven-year war: More than 300,000 people have been killed since the conflict emerged in 2011 following a government crackdown on protesters calling for the release of political prisoners and President Bashar al-Assad to step down. Since then, the conflict has evolved into a multifaceted war, drawing in global superpowers, neighboring countries and non-state actors.


Bitcoin plunges below $10,000 as major crypto exchange to share user details with US tax authorities

February 26, 2018


The cryptocurrency market, led by bitcoin, plummeted after US-based exchange Coinbase said it would hand over the data of nearly 13,000 of its customers to the US Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

Bitcoin, the world’s number one digital currency, was trading at slightly over $9,529 at 8:21am GMT on Monday, off last week’s peak of $12,000. The virtual currencies market has been recovering following a dramatic plunge earlier this year after regulators across the world announced plans of a crackdown on their exchange, trade, or circulation.

The IRS had reportedly requested the California-based digital currency exchange and wallet service to provide detailed information on all of its (over 500,000) customers, as early as July. However, in November, the request was reduced to 14,000 “high-transacting” users. The measure is presumably aimed at curbing tax evasion practices among people dealing with virtual currencies.

Coinbase, which reportedly brokers exchanges of Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, and Litecoin with fiat currencies in 32 countries, informed its users that it must provide the data of thousands of them to the IRS.

“After a long process, the court issued an order that represents a partial, but still significant, victory for Coinbase and its customers: the order requires Coinbase to produce only certain limited categories of information from the accounts of approximately 13,000 customers,” a Friday letter to customers from the exchange reads.



  1. Scope

This document provides commanders and staffs with general information and technical data concerning chemical/biological (CB) agents and other compounds or military interest such as toxic industrial chemicals (TIC). It explains the use; classification; and physical, chemical, and physiological properties of these agents and compounds. Users of this manual are nuclear, biological, and chemical (NBC)/ chemical, biological, and radiological (CBR) staff officers, NBC noncommissioned officers (NCOs), staff weather officers (SWOs), NBC medical defense officers, medical readiness officers, medical intelligence officers, field medical treatment officers, and others involved in planning battlefield operations in an NBC environment.

  1. Purpose

This publication provides a technical reference for CB agents and related compounds. The technical information furnished provides data that can be used to support operational assessments based on intelligence preparation of the battlespace


  1. Application

The audience for this publication is NBC/CBR staff personnel and commanders tasked with planning, prepar ing for, and conducting military operations.

  1. Implementation Plan

Participating service command offices of primary responsibility (OPRs) will review this publication, validate the inform ation, and reference and incorporate it in service and command manuals, regulations, and curricula as follows:

Army . The United States Army (USA) will incorporate this publication in USA training and doctrinal publications as directed by the Commander, United States Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRA DOC) . Distribution is in accordance with Department of the Army (DA) Form 12-99-R (Initial Distribution Requirements for Publications).

Marine Corps .

The United States Marine Corps (USMC) will incorporate the procedures in this publication in USMC training and doctrinal publications as directed by the Commanding General (CG), United States Marine Corps Combat i.Development Command (MCC DC) . Distribution is in accordance with Marine Corps Publication Distribution System (MCPDS).

Navy .

The United States Navy (USN) will incorporate these procedures in

USN training and doctrinal publications as directed by the Commander, Navy

Warfare Development Command (NWDC). Distribution is according to the military standard requisitioning and issue procedures (MILSTRIP).

Air Force .

The United States Air Force (USAF) will validate and incorporate appropriate procedures according to applicable governing directives.

  1. User Information
  2. The United States Army Chemical School (USACMLS) developed this publication with the joint participation of the approving service commands.
  3. We encourage recommended changes for improving this publication. Please reference the specific page and paragraph, and provide a rationale for each recommendation. Send comments and recommendations directly to—



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Chapter I


  1. Background

The threat or use of CB weapons is a possible condition of future warfare and could occur in the early stages of war to disrupt United States (US) operations and logistics. In many of the regions where the US is likely to deploy forces, potential adversaries may use CB weapons. Potential adversaries may seek to counter US conventional military superiority using less expensive and more attainable, asymmetrical means. To meet this challenge, US forces must be properly trained and equipped to operate effectively and decisively in the face of NBC attacks. Additionally, US forces could be confronted in an environment where TIC present a hazard to US forces.

  1. Use of CB Weapons. Adversaries may employ CB agents and other toxic materials to achieve specific effects. In addition to the physical effects, there exist psychological effects, both in the immediate target area and in other vulnerable areas that may be potential targets.

(1) Chemical agents have effects that can be immediate or delayed, can be persistent or nonpersistent, and can have significant physiological effects. While relatively large quantities of an agent are required to ensure an area remains contaminated over time, small- scale selective use that exploits surprise can cause significant disruption and may have lethal effects.

(2) Biological agents can produce lethal or incapacitating effects over an extensive area and can reproduce. The delayed onset of symptoms and detection, identification, and verification difficulties for biological agents can also confer important advantages to adversaries who decide to use biological agents.

(3) The means available to adversaries for delivery of CB weapons range from specially designed, sophisticated weapon sy stems developed by nations to relatively inefficient improvised devices employed by terrorists and other disaffected individuals and groups.

  1. US Policy. 3 This paragraph contains brief descriptions of treaty, legal, and policy strictures on chemical and biological warfare (CBW ).

(1) The Protocol for the Prohibition of the Use in War of Asphyxiating,

Poisonous or Other Gases, and of Bacteriological Methods of Warfare,” also known as the Geneva Protocol of 1925, prohibits chemical and bacteriological methods of warfare. Most parties interpret the protocol as a prohibition only of the first use of these agents in war. It did not ban the development, production, or stockpiling of these weapons. In 1974, the US Senate gave advice and consent to ratification of this protocol, subject to the reservation that the US would not be bound by the provisions with respect to an enemy state or its allies who fail to respect the prohibitions of the protocol. On 22 January 1975, the US ratified the protocol subject to this reservation. The protocol entered into force for the US on 10 April 1975. The relevance of the Geneva Protocol is largely superseded by the more restrictive Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production, Stockpiling, and

Use of Chemical Weapons and on their Destruction (also known as the Chemical Weapons

Convention [CWC] and by the Convention on the Prohibition of Bacteriological and Toxic

Weapons (also known as the Biological Weapons Convention [BWC]) summarized below.

(2) The Presidential Statement on Chemical and Biological Weapons,

November 1969, renounced the US use of lethal biological agents and weapons and confined biological research to defensive measures such as immunization and safety. Und er the terms of the BWC, parties undertake not to develop, produce, stock pile, or acquire biological agents or toxins “of types and in quantities that have no justification for prophylactic, protective and other peaceful purposes,” as well as weapons and means of delivery. The BWC does not establish a specific verification regime. The US ratified the BWC on 29 March 1975.

(3) Executive Order No. 11850, 8 April 1975, Renunciation of Certain Uses in

War of Chemical Herbicides and Riot Control Agents, renounced first use of herbicides in war (except for specified defensive uses) and first use of RCAs in war except for defensive military modes to save lives.

(4) The CWC, which entered into force on 29 April 1997, bans the development, production, acquisition, stockpiling, transfer, or use of chemical weapons. It provides for the destruction of all chemical weapons stocks within 10 years after entry into force. It contains a vigorous challenge regime to ensure compliance. The US ratified the CWC on 25 April 1997.


  1. Threat
  2. Changes. Countries with chemical weapons programs are adding agents and more sophisticated delivery systems. Similarly, the sophistication of CBW capabilities is increasing. Proliferation of weapons technology, precision navigation technology, and CBW technology in developing nations presents the US with a complicated national security challenge. Intelligence efforts include collection and analysis of nations’ dual-use, CB industrial capabilities, and development of the indications and warning of adversarial use of dual-use capabilities.
  3. Challenges. The US faces a number of regional proliferation challenges. Many of these are detailed in the January 2001 report published by the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD), Proliferation: Threat and Response. At least 25 countries now possess—or are in the process of acquiring and developing—capabilities to inflict mass casualties and destruction: NBC weapons or the means to deliver them.
  4. Proliferation. Proliferation of CBW technology also raises several important issues. Vaious nations could export a wide array of chemical products, including Australian group-controlled items to numerous countries of proliferation concern. The controlled items include specific chemical agent precursors, pathogens with biological warfare (BW) applications, and dual-use equipment that can be used in both CBW programs.
  5. Increases in Proliferation. In the next several years, the threat from the proliferation of CBW may increase. This could result from the development of CB agents that are more difficult to detect and from the adoption of more capable delivery systems. States with existing programs may master the production processes for complete weapons development and will be less dependent on outside suppliers.

Any nation with the political will and a minimal industrial base could produce CBW agents suitable for use in warfare. Efficient weaponization of these agents, however, does require design and production skills usually found in countries that possess a munitions development infrastructure or access to such skills from cooperative sources.

(2) On the other hand, almost any nation or group could fabricate crude agent dispersal devices. Such weapons might be capable of inflicting only limited numbers of casualties; nevertheless, they could have significant operational repercussions due to the psychological impact created by fears of CBW agent exposure.

(3) Genetic engineering gives BW developers the tools to pursue agents that could defeat the protective and treatment protocols of the prospective adversary.

Genetically engineered microorganisms also raise the technological hurdle that must be overcome to provide for effective detection, identification, and early warning of BW attacks.

(4) Numerous characteristics need to be controlled for a highly effective BW agent. Historically, the accentuation of one characteristic often resulted in the attenuation of one or more other characteristics, possibly even rendering the modified agent ineffective as a weapon. Advances in biotechnology, genetic engineering, and related scientific fields nprovide ever-increasing potential to control more of these factors, possibly leading to an enhanced ability to use BW agents as battlefield weapons.

  1. Novel BW Agents. Advances in biotechnology and genetic engineering may facilitate the development of potentially new and more deadly BW agents. The ability to modify microbial agents at a molecular level has existed since the 1960s, when new genetic engineering techniques were introduced, but the enterprise tended to be slow and unpredictable. With today’s techniques, infectious organisms can be modified to bring about disease in different ways. The current level of sophistication for many biological agents is low, but there is enormous potential—based on advances in modern molecular biology, fermentation, and drug delivery technology—for making more sophisticated weapons. The BW agents may emerge in two likely categories: man-made manipulations of classic BW agents and newly discovered or emerging infectious diseases. An example of a recent new pathogen (though not necessarily ideal BW agents) includes streptococcus pneumonia S23F, a naturally occurring strain of pneumonia resistant to at least six of the more commonly used antibiotics.

The potential types of novel biological agents that could be produc through genetic engineering methodologies are listed below. Each of these techniques seek to capitalize on the extreme lethality, virulence, or infectivity of BW agents and expl potential by developing methods to deliver more efficiently and to control these agents on the battlefield.

(a) Benign microorganisms genetically altered to produce a toxin, venom or bioregulator.

(b) Microorganisms resistant to antibiotics, standard vaccines, and therapeutics.

(c) Microorganisms with enhanced aerosol and environmental stability.

(d) Immunologically altered microorganisms able to defeat standard identification, detection, and diagnostic methods.

(e) Combinations of the above four types with improved delivery systems.

2) The future likelihood of infectious agents being created for BW purposes will be influenced by technological trends such as—

(a) Genetically engineered vectors in the form of modified infectious organisms may become increasingly available as medical tools and techniques become more widely available.

(b) Strides will be made in the understanding of infectious disease mechanisms and in microbial genetics that are responsible for disease processes.

(c) An increased understanding of the human immune system function and disease mechanisms will shed light on the circumstances that cause individual susceptibility to infectious disease.

(d) Vaccines and antidotes will be improved over the long term, perhaps to the point where classic BW agents will offer less utility as a means of causing casualties.

(e) Many bioengineering companies (both US and foreign) now sell all-in–one kits to enable researchers to perform recombinant deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) experiments. The availability of free online gene sequence databases and analytic software over the Internet further amplifies and disseminates this capability. It is now possible to transform relatively benign organisms to cause harmful effects.

  1. Militarily Significant Aspects of Toxic Chemical Agents
  2. Classification. A toxic chemical agent is any chemical which, through its chemical action on life processes, can cause death, temporary incapacitation, or permanent harm to humans or animals. For the purpose of this manual, chemical agents are further divided into chemical warfare (CW) agents and military chemical compounds. The terms “persistent” and “nonpersistent” describe the time chemical agents remain in an area and do not classify the agents technically.

(1) CW Agents. The CW agents are toxic chemica ls and their precursors prohibited under the CWC. These agents include choking, nerve, blood, blister, and incapacitating agents. Their physiological actions are as follows:

(a) Choking Agents. Choking agents cause damage to the lungs, irritation to the eyes and the respiratory tract, and pulmonary edema (“dry-land drowning”).

(b) Nerve Agents. Nerve agents inhibit cholinesterase (ChE) enzymes. This inhibition permits acetylcholine (ACh), which transmits many nerve impulses, to collect at its various sites of action.The body’s muscles and glands become overstimulated due to excessive amounts of ACh. At sufficient doses, this can lead to an inability of the body to sustain breathing.

(c) Blood Agents. The blood transports these agents to all body tissues. Hydrogen cyanide (AC) and cyanogen chloride (CK) are cellular poisons, and they disrupt the oxidative processes used by the cells. Arsine (SA) is different. It causes hemolysis of the red blood cells. The central nervous system (CNS) is especially vulnerable to lack of oxygen rega rdless of the etiology, and respiratory and cardiovascular collapse resulting from AC and CK poisoning. In the case of SA poisoning, the proximal cause of death is myocardial failure.

(d) Blister Agents (Vesicants). Blister agents are noted for producing reddening and blistering of the skin, but the eyes and respiratory tract are more sensitive than the skin. Eye exposure results in reddening of the eyes and temporary blindness or permanent effects. Inhaled mustard damages mucous membranes and the respiratory tract.

(e) Incapacitating Agents.Used in a military context, incapacitation is understood to mean inability to perform one’s military mission. Since missions vary, for the purpose of this manual, incapacitation means the inability to perform any military task effectively. An incapacitating agent is an agent that produces temporary physiological or mental effects, or both, which will render individuals incapable of concerted effort in the performance of their assigned duties. Medical treatment is not essential but can facilitate a more rapid recovery.

(2) Military Chemical Compounds. Military chemical compounds are less toxic and include materials such as respiratory irritant agents, RCAs, smoke and obscurants, and incendiary materials. The term excludes CW agents. Their physiological actions are as follows:

(a) RCAs (Lacrimators). The RCAs are chemicals that rapidly produce in human’s sensory irritation or disabling physical effects which disappear within a short time following termination of exposure.  They are local irritants that, in very low concentrations, act primarily on the eyes, causing intense pain and tearing. At high concentrations they irritate the respiratory tract and the skin. They sometimes cause nausea and vomiting.

(b) Respiratory Irritant Agents. These agents were previously called vomiting agents. Their primary action is irritation of the respiratory tract. In addition, these agents cause lacrimation (tearing), irritation of the eyes, uncontrollable coughing, sneezing, nausea, and a general feeling of bodily discomfort. Usually symptoms disappear in 20 minutes to 2 hours, leaving no residual injury.

  1. Duration of Effectiveness. Several factors determine the time a chemical agent remains effective. These include, but are not limited to, the method of dissemination, weather and terrain conditions, and the physical and chemical properties of the agent.

(1) Method of Dissemination. Chemical agents are usually disseminated in the field in the form of vapors (gases), aerosols, or liquids. When a chemical agent is disseminated as a vapor from a bursting munition, initially the cloud expands, grows cooler and heavier, and tends to retain its form. Aerosols are finely divided liquid and/or solid substances suspended in the atmosphere and behave in much the same manner as vaporized agents. Liquid agents can be absorbed (soaked into) and adsorbed (adhered to) by surfaces. They can then be evaporated or desorbed (off-gas) from surfaces, causing a vapor hazard.

(2) Weather and Terrain Conditions. Many weather factors and terrain conditions influence the duration of effectiveness of chemical agents. Most important weather factors include temperature, temperature gradient, wind speed, relative humidity, and precipitation. Important terrain conditions include vegetation, soil, and terrain contours.

(3) Physical Properties. Some of the important physical properties are vapor density, vapor pressure (VP), volatility, freezing point (FP), and melting point (MP). Vapor density determines whether the agent is lighter or heavier than air, thus determining whether the agent will settle to low areas or float away and dissipate in the at mosphere. Vapor pressure is used to determine the volatility of an agent. The volatility has an effect upon the vapor concentration. It also affects the duration of an agent hazard after dissemination. The boiling and freezing points of chemical agents influence their operational use and the means of disseminating them.

(4) Chemical Properties. The chemical properties of an agent include its stability and reactivity with water and other substances.

  1. Potency and Physiological Actions. Factors that contribute to the adverse human health effects of chemical agents include toxicity, route of exposure (ROE ), dosage, exposure duration, minute volume (MV), temperature, endpoint, physiological stressors, rate of detoxification (ROD), and rate of action (ROA). Note that not all factors are applicable to all exposure scenarios. For example, MV is not applicable to a percutaneous liquid exposure. Dosages are given for a 70-kilogram (kg) male with an MV of 15 liters per minute (L/min). Additional toxicological data are required to determine if the toxicity estimates can be applied to women. Emphasis is placed on acute toxic effects. Acute toxic effects are those occurring within moments to a few days of the toxic exposure. The toxicity estimates provided are not applicable to the general population.
  2. CWC Chemicals. There are, by conservative estimates, 25,000 or more chemicals subject to the CWC regulation—listing each chemical by name is not practical. Chemicals covered under the CWC are divided into three categories as follows:

(1) Schedule 1 chemicals have little or no use in industrial and agricultural industries. They pose a high risk to the object and purpose of the CWC by virtue of their high potential for use in activities prohibited under the CWC.

(2) Schedule 2 chemicals may be useful in the production of chemical weapons; however, they also have legitimate uses in other industrial areas. They pose a significant risk to the object and purpose of the CWC.

(3) Schedule 3 chemicals have legitimate uses in industrial areas and pose a risk to the object and purpose of the CWC.

  1. Dual-Use Precursors. Precursors for CW agents also have civil uses in industrial and agricultural industries.
  2. Agent Mixtures. Mixing chemical agents with each other or with other materials can alter the characteristics and effectiveness of the agents. Mixtures may lower the freezing point, increasing agent effectiveness over a wider temperature range. The addition of thickeners or thinners to agents will in crease or decrease persistency: for example, soman (GD) mixed with thickeners will increase persistency; RCAs mixed with thinners will decrease persistency. In addition to changing the physical properties, mixing agents together will create special problems through their physiological effects. These problems can produce difficulty in identification, immediate and delayed effects, or contact and vapor hazards occurring simultaneously. Some mixtures would make it difficult to maintain the seal of the protective mask. Mixing some agents can also increase the toxic effects, either by a synergistic effect or by an improved absorption through the skin.
  3. Militarily Significant As pects of Biological Agents
  4. Classification. A biological agent is a microorganism that causes disease in personnel, plants, or animals or causes the deterioration of material. Biological agents can be classified as pathogens, toxins, bioregulators, or prions.

(1) Pathogens. Pathogens are disease- producing microorganisms, such as bacteria, rickettsiae, or viruses. Pathogens are either naturally occurring or altered by random mutation or recombinant DNA techniques.

(2) Toxins. Toxins are poisons formed as a specific secreting product in the metabolism of a vegetable or animal organism, as distinguished from inorganic poisons. Such poisons can also be manufactured by synthetic processes.

Toxins are produced by a variety of organisms, including microbes, snakes, insects, spiders, sea creatures, and plants.

(3) Bioregulators. Bioregulators include biochemical compounds that regulate cell processes and physiologically active compounds such as catalysts and enzymes. Although they can be found in the human body in small quantities, introduction of large quantities can cause severe adverse effects or death.

(4) Prions. Prions are proteins that can cause neurodegenerative diseases in humans and animals. Proteins have a unique, genetically defined amino acids equence that determines their specific shapes and functions. Normal cell proteins have the same amino acid building blocks but they fold differently than prions. When prions enter brain cells, they apparently convert normal proteins into prions. Ultimately, the infected brain cells die and release prions into the tissue. These prions enter, infect, and destroy other brain cells. Prions entered the public’s consciousness during the mad cow epidemic that hit England in 1996. Transmission of the prions from cows to man is suspected to cause human illness. There are no known therapies effective against prions.

  1. Uses. Biological agents can be disseminated and used against personnel, animals, plants, or material. Food and industrial products can be rendered unsafe or unfit for use by contamination or by the effects resulting from contamination with biological agents. The US military forces are deployed throughout the world. Associated with the movement of troops are risks of introduction of exotic agri cultural pests and animal disease agents through soil contamination and transportation of regulated items such as fruits, vegetables, meat, and dairy products, other food items, and animal products (e.g., trophies) The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APH IS) oversees the entry of cargo, personnel, equipment, personal property, mail, and their means of conveyance into the US.

(1) Antipersonnel. Biological antipersonnel agents are those that are effective directly against humans. The threat would select these agents on the basis of the agents’ability to cause death or disability. Potential biological antipersonnel agents include toxins, bacteria, rickettsiae, viruses, and toxins.

(2) Antianimal. Biological antianimal agents are those that could be employed against animals to incapacitate or destroy them through disease. The purposeful spreading of infectious agents that attack cattle or other domestic animals can lead to serious consequences for a country’s food supply or export of animal products (hides, wool, fats, and biological medicinal products such as adrenalin, insulin, pituitary extracts, cortisone, vaccines, and antisera).

(3) Antiplant. Biological antiplant agents are organisms that cause disease or damage to plants. These agents may be used intentionally by an enemy to attack food or economically valuable crops, thereby reducing a nation’s ability to resist aggression.

(4) Antimaterial. Antimaterial agents are organisms that degrade or break down some item of material. For example, fungi may damage fabrics, rubber products, leather goods, or foodstuffs. Some bacteria produce highly acidic compounds that cause pitting in metals; these agents could create potential problems with stockpiled material. Some bacteria can use petroleum products as an energy source and cause residues that might clog fuel or oil lines.

  1. Duration of Effectiveness. The duration of effectiveness of a biological agent refers to the persistency of the agent in the environment. It depends on the characteristics of the agent and environmental factors.

(1) Biological agent characteristics such as encapsulation (natural, such as bacterial spores, or manmade protective coverings), addition of dyes to the spray fluid, or possibly genetic engineering (of pathogens) may protect some agents from sunlight and other destructive natural forces. Bacteria that are resistant to environmental extremes frequently produce spores to allow survival during adverse conditions. Spore formation is not a method of reproduction inasmuch as each vegetative cell forms only a single spore and each spore germinates to form a single vegetative cell. The bacterium (vegetative cell makes a copy of its DNA. The DNA becomes surrounded by a series of membranes that accumulate calcium, dipicolinic acid (heat-resistant factor) and protein layers. The resistant spore might remain dormant for years without requiring nutrients or water and might survive under extreme ranges of temperature. When conditions become favorable, the spore develops into an actively growing vegetative cell.

(2) Ultraviolet (UV) radiation, relative humidity, wind speed, and temperature gradient are important weather factors in determining duration of effectiveness.

  1. Methods of Dissemination. Biological agents may be disseminated as aerosols, liquid droplets (toxins only), or dry powders.

(1) Biological agents may be delivered in either wet or dry form. Dry powders composed of very small particles tend to have better dissemination characteristics and have advantages in storage. Dried agents require an increased level of technological sophistication to produce, although freeze-drying and spray-drying technologies have been available in the industry for a number of years.

(2) The BW agents might be released against our forces or against civilian populations by means of sprays, explosive devices, and contamination of food and water. Most commonly, delivery methods use aerosolized agents.

(a) A BW agent can be released as a line source. A line source would be released perpendicular to the direction of the wind, upwind of the intended target area.

(b) A second type of aerosol source is a point source, which is a stationary device for aerosolization of the agent, such as a stationary sprayer. A modified point source would be a group of spray devices, such as specially designed bomblets dispersed in a pattern on the ground or a missile or artillery shell designed to release such bomblets.

  1. Physiological Aspects. Employment considerations for BW agents include the following:

(1) ROE. The important portals of entry are the respiratory tract, the exposed mucosal surfaces (moist surfaces of nose, mouth, and eyes), and the digestive tract.  In a biological attack the respiratory route would be the primary route of entry.  The respiratory system is much more susceptible to penetration. The body is more resistant to invasion by microorganisms through the skin; however, penetration across the skin can occur. This is particularly true of abraded (broken) surfaces and some toxins such as mycotoxins. Toxins absorbed through the respiratory tract can produce signs and symptoms different from those acquired through natural occurrence. For example,staphylococcal enterotoxin B when ingested in food causes acute gastrointestinal ( GI) illness; however, when delivered via aerosol to the respiratory tract, it produces respiratory disease. Personnel can encounter biological agents by natural routes, such as in water and food or by vectors.

(2) Dosage. The BW agents are inherently more toxic than CW nerve agents on a weight-for-weight basis and can potentially provide broader coverage per pound of payload than CW agents.

(a) Infective Dose. The infectivity of an agent reflects the relative ease with which microorganisms establish themselves in a host species. Pathogens with high infectivity cause disease with relatively few organisms.

(b) Lethal Dose. Some pathogens produce toxins that can result in disease (for example, anthrax, botulinum, choler a, diphtheria, and typhus). The extreme toxicity of many toxins causes the lethal dose to be much smaller than that of chemical agents. Hence, units of micrograms (µg) or even nanograms (ng) may be used instead of milligrams (mg) in expressing toxicity. Human toxicity estimates are based on an imaldata, and the ROE for the animals is not always what would be expected on the battlefield.

Some human toxicity data are based on accidental contact, ingestion, or inhalation of these natural poisons.

(3) ROA. The rate of reaction to toxins varies widely. Rapid-acting toxins generally incapacitate within minutes. Delayed-acting agents may take several hours to days to incapacitate. The time for maximum effects for pathogens is normally more than 24 hours (unless the pathogen produces a toxin). However, the incubation periods of microorganisms used in BW may be far shorter than those expected by examining the natural disease.

  1. Requirements for a Weaponized BW Agent. The key factors that make a biological agent suitable for an attack include availability or ease of production in sufficient quantity; the ability to cause either lethal or incapacitating effects in humans at doses that are achievable and deliverable; appropriate particle size in aerosol; ease of dissemination; stability (while mainta ining virulence) after production in storage, weapons, and the environment; and susceptibility of intended victims with nonsusceptibility of friendly forces.

(1) Availability or Ease of Production .Many replicating agents (bacteria and viruses) can be produced in large quantities with modern fermentation and viral production technologies. Some toxins, like ricin, are widely available because their source in nature is ubiquitous and the process necessary to harvest the toxin is technically straightforward. On the other hand, some replicating agents are very difficult to grow in quantity, and many toxins are produced in nature in such low quantities that harvesting them is impractical (shellfish toxins are a good example).

(2) Incapacitation and Lethality. BW agents are likely to be selected for their ability to either incapacitate or kill the human targets of the attack. A BW agent does not necessarily have to be lethal to be useful as a military weapon. An agent such as Venezuelan equine encephalitis (VEE) virus could cause incapacitation among large numbers of unit personnel. If lethality is desired, agents such as anthrax have high case fatality rates once infection is established in unimmunized hosts.

(3) Appropriate Particle Size in Aerosol. An effective weaponized BW agent is of a particle size that would allow it to be carried for long distances by prevailing winds and inhaled deeply into the lungs of the unsuspecting victims. The size range of particles that meets both of these conditions is 1 to 5 microns in diameter. Particles larger than this would either settle out into the ground or more likely be filtered out in the upper respiratory tract of those who inhale them. Particles in this size range are invisible to the human eye; thus, a cloud of such particles would not generally be detected by those attacked, even if such a cloud were to be carried through their position. It is worth noting, however, that particles outside this size range are still dangerous and able to cause deadly illnesses, even though their transmission efficiency is less.

(4) Ease of Dissemination. An effective weaponized BW agent is easily disseminated in the open air by using off-the-shelf devices such as industrial sprayers or other types of aerosol-producing devices. These could be mounted on an airplane, boat, car, or other moving vehicle, or even placed in a stationary position. An alternative method would be to disseminate the agent in an enclosed space (e.g., a building) where it could more efficiently infect or intoxicate humans living or working in the area.

(5) Stability after Production. Once an adversary produces a BW agent in quantity, it must be fairly stable—either in bulk storage or once put into a weapon or delivery system. It must, therefore, retain its viability and virulence or toxicity during production, storage, transportation, and delivery.

(6) Susceptibility and Nonsusceptibility. An effective BW agent is one to which the target force is known to be susceptible (i. e., not immunized against), but to which the adversary possesses high levels of immunity, usually via vaccination.

  1. Militarily Significant Aspects of Toxic Industrial Chemicals
  2. Classification. The TIC are chemicals that are toxic to plants, animals, or humans.
  3. Uses. The TIC are found in abundance in all countries, and are used in chemical manufacturing processes, agriculture (pesti cides), water treatment (chlorination), and many other areas. Each year, more than 70,000 different chemicals amounting to billions of tons of material are produced, processed, or consumed by the global chemical industry. A large portion of these chemicals may exhibit characteristics or be sufficiently hazardous to be a threat in a military situation.
  4. Characteristics of TIC. The TIC of military concern may exist as soli ds, liquids, or gases. For many cases, release of a TIC may involve a change of the state of the chemical, therefore mak ing protection difficult. Like CW agents, TIC include many lethal compounds.

(1) Toxicity. Many TIC, due to their toxicity, can cause incapacitation or death.

(2) Corrosiveness. Many TIC are highly corrosive. Special equipment containers and procedures are necessary to ensure safe handling.

(3) Flammability. Many TIC are highly flammable and present a major fire hazard.

(4) Explosiveness. Unlike CW agents, TIC can be highly explosive and present a serious threat when handled.

(5) Reactivity. Many TIC react violently with water or other materials, and thus present dangers upon contact with other materials, including air.

(6) Byproducts. When burned, mixed, or exploded, many TIC produce additional highly toxic byproducts.

(7) Quantities available. The sheer volume and widespread availability of TIC present a serious danger in the event of a release.

  1. Duration of Effectiveness. A number of factors determine the amount of time a TIC would present a danger after release. Factors include the physical properties of the TIC as well as weather, terrain, and conditions at the release site. These factors affect TIC in the same manner as that for chemical agents.
  2. Physiological Aspects. Exposure to TIC affects the body in a variety of ways. Generally, they disrupt bodily functions. The effects are dependent on the routes of entry, toxicity of the chemical, and the concentration to which exposed.

(1) ROE. The TIC can enter the body through inhalation, ing estion, dermal absorption, or a combination of these methods. The primary concern for exposure is that of the inhalation of a TIC as a gas.

(2) Exposure Concentration and Levels of Concern. The type and seriou sness of effects from exposure to TIC, lik e any chemical is dependent upon the concentration and length of time one is exposed. This concentra tion and time relationship is unique to every chemical. The dosages of TIC are expressed in parts per million (ppm) In general, TIC tend to be at least one order of magnitude less potent than nerve agents and tend not be rapidly lethal in small quantities. Standards have been developed for industry for different exposure scenarios.

(a) Immediately Dangerous to Life and Health (IDLH):  The definition of IDLH that was derived during the Standards Completion Program (SCP) was based on the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) definition stipulated in 30 CFR 11.3(t). The purpose for establishing an IDLH value in the SCP was to ensure that a worker could escape without injury or irreversible health effects from an IDLH exposure in the event of the failure of respiratory protection equipment. The highly reliable breathing apparatus providing maximum worker protection was permitted. In determining IDLH values, the inability of a worker to escape without loss of life or irreversible health effects was considered along with severe eye or respiratory irritation and other deleterious effects (e.g., disorientation or lack of coordination) that could prevent escape. As a safety margin, the SCP IDLH values were based on the effects that might occur as a consequence of a 30- minute exposure. However, the 30-minute period was not meant to imply that workers should stay in the work environment any longer than necessary. In fact, every effort should be made to exit immediately.

(b) Refer to the United States Army Center for Health Promotion and Preventive Medicine (USACHPPM) Technical Guide 230, Chemical Exposure Guidelines for Deployed Military Personnel, for obtaining the military exposure guidelines for assessing exposure concentrations for TIC.

  1. TIC Hazard Assessment. As part of the IPB process, a planner must assess the likelihood of a release or exposure as well as the actual TIC material. Some example considerations are –

(1) Accidents in civilian operations significantly increase when technically trained personnel flee an area, such as a combat zone (CZ). Civilian personnel remaining may be pressured to operate equipment beyond their training/technical expertise in an area of combat.

(2) Pipelines can offer a very attractive target for terrorists because actions can be planned well in advance of execution and pipelines do not rely on shipping or transportation scheduled.

(3) Storage yards, ports, airfields and rail yards often contain significant amounts of transiting TIC. This not only presents opportunities for improvised use against US forces, but also presents increased possibility of accidents and targets for those who want to destroy the TI C (such as ammunition precursor chemicals).

  1. Pesticides. Large stockpiles of obsolete pesticides have been accumulated in virtually all developing countries over periods sometimes exceeding four decades. The term “pesticides,” as used by US forces include insecticides, rodenticides, fungicides, and herbicides. The health effects of pesticides depend on the type of pesticide. Some, such as the organophosphates and carbamates, affect the nervous system. Others may irritate the skin or eyes. Some pesticides may be carcinogens. Others may affect the hormone or endocrine system in the body.The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has recognized the dangers of many pesticides and publishes lists of those pesticides that are either banned or severely restricted in their use. Applicable service personnel (e.g., Army preventive medicine (PVNTMED), Air Force civil engineering, public health) can provide information on specific pesticides that could be used in specific areas of operation (AOs).


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