05-13-2003, 11:19 PM
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<h2><font color=#003399>N. Korea fired laser at troops</font></h2>
North Korea's military fired a laser in March at two U.S. Army helicopters patrolling the demilitarized zone separating the two Koreas in what U.S. officials call a provocative action, The Washington Times has learned.
Two Apache attack helicopters were illuminated by lasers in early March by a weapon that had the characteristics of a Chinese laser gun, an indication that North Korea has deployed a new and potentially lethal weapon.
The Chinese laser gun, however, is a weapon that can cause eye damage at ranges up to three miles.
It could not be learned whether the laser incident was discussed in periodic meetings between U.S., South Korean and North Korean military officials at the Panmunjom truce village.
The March laser illumination of the Apache helicopters occurred around the time that four North Korean jets intercepted a U.S. spy plane.
Both incidents occurred around the time the Pentagon announced it was sending 21 B-1 and B-52 bombers to Guam in response to the growing threat of North Korea and the latest crisis over Pyongyang's nuclear arms program.
"Two USFK pilots were alerted by onboard laser-detecting equipment that laser systems may have illuminated their aircraft," Col. Taylor said in a statement.
According to the officials, the two Apache attack helicopters were airborne about two miles south of the milewide DMZ when laser sensors on both aircraft went off.
It can cause injuries to human eyes at a range of just under two miles, and with a special magnification device it can damage eyes at distances of up to three miles, military specialists say.
By contrast, lasers used to guide weapons and in range-finding equipment work at shorter distances than the Chinese laser weapon.
Since the incident, air crews patrolling the DMZ have been required to wear eye protection intended to thwart any laser attacks.
A classified report by the Army's National Ground Intelligence Center produced in 1999 warned that Serbia's armed forces might resort to laser warfare against U.S. pilots during the air war over Kosovo.
"The greatest potential threat of lasers being used as range finders, target designators, or even blinding weapons would come from the [Serbian] Special Operations Corps [63rd and 72nd brigades]," the report said.
Thomas Fargo, the commander of U.S. forces in the Pacific, told reporters last month that the bomber deployment to Guam is to make sure "we have the proper deterrent posture in place."
Full Article <font color="red"><u>Here</u></font>
My patience is about run out with idiots...apparently Kim Jong wasn't paying attention to operation "Shock & Awe" [img]graemlins/flamingmad.gif[/img]