March 25th, 2003

spring

It's official - I hate human beings

http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/world/iraq/20030325-0813-iraq-dolphins.html

REUTERS
8:13 a.m., March 25, 2003

UMM QASR, Iraq Forget precision bombs, unmanned spy planes and high-tech
weaponry, the U.S. military is about to unveil its most unlikely mine detector
all the way from San Diego, the Atlantic bottle-nosed dolphin.

At the southern Iraqi port of Umm Qasr, secured by U.S and British forces after
days of fighting, soldiers made last-minute preparations Tuesday for the
arrival of a team of specially trained dolphins to help divers ensure the
coastline is free of danger before humanitarian aid shipments can dock.

U.S. Navy Captain Mike Tillotson told reporters that three or four dolphins
would work from Umm Qasr, using their natural sonar abilities to seek out mines
or other explosive devices which Iraqi forces may have planted on the seabed.

"They were flown over on a military animal transporter in fleece-lined slings,"
Tillotson said. "We keep them in a certain amount of water. They travel very
well."

"They will be given restaurant quality food and vitamins, and they will work
out of wells which we've set up here."

Tillotson said the dolphins were trained not to swim up to mines, but to place
a marker a small distance away, minimizing any danger to themselves.

Several mines were discovered last week on the back of ships along the Faw
peninsula, but teams of divers searching around Umm Qasr port since Monday have
not found any embedded mines.

http://www.upi.com/view.cfm?StoryID=20030324-064259-1443r

Morocco offers US monkeys to detonate mine
From the International Desk
Published 3/24/2003 6:43 AM
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RABAT, D.C., Morocco, March 24 (UPI) -- A Moroccan publication accused the
government Monday of providing unusual assistance to U.S. troops fighting in
Iraq by offering them 2,000 monkeys trained in detonating land mines.

The weekly al-Usbu' al-Siyassi reported that Morocco offered the U.S. forces a
large number of monkeys, some from Morocco's Atlas Mountains and others
imported, to use them for detonating land mines planted by the Iraqis.

The publication quoted a highly-informed source as saying, "that is not a
scientific illusion but a well-known military tactic."


I'm sorry, but this disgusts me. Utterly disgusts me.