Cluster Bombs Should Be Outlawed



This is a personal blog. I talk about the odd charity but mostly I steer clear of troublesome topics such as politics or religion. Today, for once, I’m going to break that rule.

The Convention on Cluster Munitions is a powerful disarmament and humanitarian treaty. The U.S. should ratify this treaty.

In Laos, we visited the offices of the Mines Advisory Group, read about the work they do clearing unexploded ordinance (UXO) in Laos (and other countries) and watched the three movies they show on the impact of having UXO in the ground around rural villages and their work in removing it. We were all in tears.

Cluster Bomb Sub-Munitions

Large bombs make better movie footage and the large bomb casings that we saw all around Phonsavan were visually arresting but, as a parent, the “bombies”, the small bomb-lets inside a cluster bomb scared me stupid. Cluster bombs are packed with these small sub-munitions each about the size of a baseball, some brightly colored, some not (Photo above courtesy of the Cluster Munition Coalition). Every kid I know would pick something like that up and examine it, maybe even toss it about a bit. These bombies are littered all over some parts of Laos, hidden under the fields. From a war that most of the world didn’t and still doesn’t know about which ended 30 years ago.

The Secret War in Laos should not have happened. That Laos is the most-bombed country in the world, per capita, is a tragedy, the effects of which are still being felt today. It scares me that Cluster munitions, which still maim and kill people in Laos are being used in other conflicts around the world today. It is stupid and should be stopped.

You can learn more about Cluster Bombs and the Convention at Stop Cluster Munitions.

Thanks for listening. Normal programming will resume tomorrow :)

Like what you’ve read and interested in reading more? Subscribe to the WanderMom feed using rss or email , follow me on Twitter or become a fan on Facebook.



Share and Enjoy

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Pinterest
  • Google Plus
  • StumbleUpon
  • LinkedIn
  • Email
This entry was posted in Laos and tagged , , , , on by .

About wandermom

". . .life is short and the world is wide" - Simon Raven I'm not sure I've ever consciously planned a trip based on this sentiment, but it definitely influences my subconscious! I've been traveling as frequently and widely as possible since I finished school. And I love it. I love the research, the planning, the fervent packing and the curiosity of exploring somewhere I've never been before. My husband & I are both Irish - as in born-in-Ireland. But we live in Seattle. We have two boys: wild, boisterous, regular boys. So, since becoming a Mom, I've been a WanderMom. Given our slightly-unusual family situation, routine "visits-to-Grandma" are international trips requiring passports, 10hr-flights and (oh joy!) airport transfers. I have rants, raves and opinions about how, where & why to travel with kids (start them as young as you can, I say!). I hope to learn even more by researching topics which other wandermoms may be interested in reading about on this blog. Passports, pacifiers, diapers and gameboys at the ready - off we go! Contact Info: Email Michelle: michelle (at) murphnduff (dot) org

4 thoughts on “Cluster Bombs Should Be Outlawed

  1. Jennifer

    We visited the battlefields of WWI and our guide wanted to impress upon us just how much impact the war had had on the population left after the war finished. More than 90(!) years later, they still occasionally find poison gas cylinders in the fields, which have to bees wryly and expensively disposed of. Although I had read of the impact of mines, etc on places like Cambodia and Laos, I had naively though that they might last a few years. It is horrifying to think that in 100 years, large parts of Africa will still be dealing with the aftermath of wars being fought now. Belgium, a very rich country, still finds the “iron harvest” an expensive undertaking. I shudder to think what it must be like in Laos.

  2. Pingback: Travel Tuesday: Weekly Favorites for 22 Mar 2011

  3. Pingback: Travel Tuesday: Weekly Favorites for 22 Mar 2011 : Gobbledy Goon

  4. Steven

    “The Secret War in Laos should not have happened.”Really? Maybe the Pathet Lao and NVA shouldn’t of tried to topple the government and massacre the Hmong. Maybe they bombed to much but given the situation there was little alternative but bomb the Pathet Lao and the NVA. And at least when they bombed, the Americans tried to hit military targets unlike the communists who committed genocide and fought regularly used terror tactics.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *