Military Review

Non-lethal weapons in the army: while some cons

Non-lethal weapons in the army: while some consAt the end of October in MSTU. N.E. Bauman held a round table on "Weapon non-lethal action - myths and reality. " They discussed the problems of the development and use of non-lethal weapons (OND) in anti-terrorist and law enforcement operations, its social effectiveness, legal and biomedical aspects of use. The discussion was attended by teachers, researchers and graduate students of the faculty of "Special Engineering" MSTU. N.E. Bauman.

The urgency of using UPM is growing due to the increasing number of cases of terrorist attacks, with the desire to avoid unjustified losses among the civilian population during anti-terrorist operations, as well as law enforcement operations and the release of illegally seized objects. At the round table there were four reports on this topic, the discussion at times became acute. It should be noted a high expert level of participants. All of them are qualified experts in the development and application of non-lethal technologies.

Two represent Russia in the European Working Group on UPD. Moscow State Technical University named after N.E. Bauman is the only university in the country where the elective course “Weapons of non-lethal action” has been taught since 2001, and a database has been created that includes descriptions of developments in the field of non-lethal technologies, their testing and application in leading countries of the world that have the corresponding scientific and technical potential.


One American expert said that it was an almost obscene oxymoron, a “weapon,” at the same time a “non-lethal act.” In legislative acts of the Russian Federation it is called "special means of non-lethal action." The British and the Dutch call this type of special means "less lethal weapons." In other countries, it is called a weapon of low mortality. Because, sadly, there is no absolutely safe weapon. And they did the right thing in the Russian Federation that the word “traumatic weapon” disappeared in the recently amended Law on Arms. Since 2004, when he was legalized, about 100 people have been killed from “traumatic” in Russia. But this refers to civilian and service weapons. At the round table at MSTU. N.E. Bauman talked about weapons of low mortality for police, anti-terrorist and army peacekeeping operations. And they remembered about the “trauma” in connection with the fact that such names create the illusion of the safety of using such firearms among citizens and thus lower the threshold for using civilian weapons. Simply put, a false name gives rise to the irresponsibility of the owners of the “trunks”, a false illusion of security, since this is only a trauma.

Professor MGTU them. N.E. Bauman Victor Selivanov, noted the main features of the UPM: “The most important criterion is to minimize the irreversible damage to human health, the consequences and cause significant harm to the environment. The main criterion is supplemented by a number of private, but very important criteria, without which non-lethal weapons cannot be applied. ” In his opinion, there can be no such weapon of non-lethal action, which with 100% probability would exclude victims.

What should a weapon do to a person? Basically neutralize the participants of the riots, stop unauthorized access to prohibited objects.

When should such weapons be used? Clearly, in the application strategy, political measures must first be involved, then the informational impact, economic, only then the UPM will be applied. And only then ordinary weapons. But all over the world, this is practically not happening. And this is a big trouble, because there is no legislatively strategically established order. And in many cases there are simply no good special devices.

Although attention is paid to OND. There is a whole directorate in the US and NATO. In many other countries there are groups to study this issue in the police, the army, in the judiciary. The study goes in three main directions. The first is information-analytical, that is, how can OND be applied. The second is scientific and technical research, that is, is it possible to apply. And the third is biomedical, legal and social studies. This third point, in the opinion of Professor Viktor Selivanov, is the most laborious and socially sensitive. It is here that all the controversies associated with the tactics, consequences and legitimacy of the use of special means of non-lethal action appear most acutely.


Doctor of Medical Sciences Vladimir Savostyanov several years ago was the head of the laboratory of combat pathology at the Ministry of Defense and was studying the effects of various combat systems on biological objects. Repeatedly went on business trips to Chechnya. OND started working on problems in 1995, when gas revolvers and pistols appeared on the territory of the Russian Federation. At the same time, the first gunshot wounds from this type of weapon began to appear, the treatment of which was seriously complicated by gas burns and differed significantly from the protocols for the treatment of gunshot wounds in the practice of military field surgery.

In a report on the biomedical features of the OND action, Vladimir Savostyanov noted that the main principles of the development of UPM are unchanged - this is minimization of the damage. The main features are the reduction of irretrievable losses. But at all conferences on OND the same sharp discussion always arises :: is it possible to create a non-lethal weapon from the position of biology and the biological system's response to the irritating traumatic impact?

The stronger the impact, the stronger the biological system, that is, the person will resist. Accordingly, when trying to twist the offender, he resists. Therefore it is necessary to increase the power of exposure. In the end, it still leads to damage to the biological system. But due to the fact that a new defeat factor was used, we have a new kind of wound process. Therefore, we probably will never create a weapon that completely eliminates mortality and meets all the requirements of the law on its application, while at the same time ensuring the fulfillment of a tactical mission.

If we find relationships between them that we can describe mathematically using special coefficients, then we can go on the criteria for quantifying special means of non-lethal action, which can be used either on individual objects or on a group of individuals (crowd). “This dependence was calculated, and I had such coefficients that reflect the effectiveness of non-lethal systems. They are defined by two main components. This is the degree of damaging effect and the degree of effective impact of the applied system. With what energy should we act on the biological system in order to achieve the desired effect? The more effective this non-lethal impact technology, the more damage it will inflict. ”

Conducted an experiment with a pig. The rubber bullet went tangentially, but an internal colon bruise occurred that could cause peritonitis. When using an Italian non-lethal cluster munition, penetrating wounds to the abdominal cavity with colon injuries were obtained. The rubber bullet is ineffective, but belongs to the fourth class - “Low danger and the likelihood of irreversible consequences for human health.” The danger of death is insignificant, but another danger is that the object can continue its aggressive actions.

As for cluster munitions, it falls into the group of the third hazard class - “The average probability of irreversible consequences for human life and health”. But here, too, the effectiveness of the impact is weak, since there is a high probability that a person may die.

With the help of the developed model, we tried to evaluate the effectiveness of the special operation itself. As a result, the mathematical value of the probability of the combat mission was obtained. It is central when it is necessary to decide whether we will use firearms in anti-terrorist operations or use complex weapons, or use them in conjunction with special non-lethal weapons. those. develop a special operation scenario. When they say that 25% of losses during the release of the hostages at Nord-Ost is the result of the use of special equipment, I disagree.

A special operation is a multifaceted complex concept. And it cannot be said that the loss among the hostages at Nord-Ost is the fault of only those special forces that freed the hostages. We must not forget the truism: there must be special units that must engage in minimizing and eliminating the consequences of an emergency and conducting special operations. Opinion of all specialists, including Western ones, who had to communicate: the victims could be practically avoided if subsequent effective medical care were used. And the problem is not the use of special equipment. After all, the hostages were carried out alive, but people were for a long time without food, without water, exhausted, in a state of shock. Help had to be rendered on the spot, on the threshold. And they were side-by-side loaded onto buses and transported to hospitals without first aid, which in some cases resulted in death.

Let me be frank: it was the failure of our medical system in an emergency. As a member of the National Anti-Terrorism Committee, I repeatedly reported on this, but it was not possible to achieve some kind of common understanding - all the departments are too divided. If earlier we relied on civil defense units, they are not there now. Specially trained employees of medical and preventive institutions of the Ministry of Defense could effectively participate, which are now virtually nonexistent either. And civil health care does not always have time to quickly respond to threats of mass destruction, and it is not intended for such situations.

In my opinion, to effectively assist, it is necessary to develop appropriate scenarios. To create an automated control system based on multivariate flexible solutions, in which everything can be laid - wind rose, positioning on the ground, typical buildings, etc. Only under such conditions it is possible to achieve that the BCD becomes truly non-lethal. When we learn to eliminate the consequences of special operations, then we will effectively save lives and health.


When asked why the army does not use UPM, one of the participants of the round table said: “There was no talk of weapons here, they mostly talked about special operations that have nothing to do with the military operation. And while I see no reason to rank the development of the technologies referred to as military technologies ”.

During the discussion, it turned out that the research in the field of infrasound closed the OND Directorate in the United States due to the inefficiency even 20 years ago. The United States also created several prototypes of self-propelled units with microwave emitters. But technically the machines were not adapted for military operations, as it turned out during their trial operation in Iraq. When exposed to a crowd of microwave radiation with a frequency of 95 GHz, a person may experience superficial thermal burns. It is believed that a person will run away, but where will he run if behind a crowd he presses? Such technologies are more suitable for protecting objects from penetration.

To protect the ships, acoustic “Oralki” (LRAD - Long Range Aqustic Devices) are already widely used, transmitting a mixture of 40-50 annoying sounds at the maximum volume, starting from the rattle of iron on the glass and ending with the cry of a child. Such acoustic devices are mainly used not as a weapon, but as a warning system: maybe this is a boat with a terrorist approaching, or maybe a drunken tourist.

The participants of the round table noted that the Ministry of Defense considered UPM a police weapon. So far no one has formulated a theme for the military: how to accomplish a combat mission with non-lethal means within the framework of typical scenarios?

An ordinary troop commander asks a question: “I attack the enemy with humane weapons, but for me it’s obviously inhumane.” So the motivation for the use of UPM in army operations is not at all obvious. And in the army more stringent conditions than the police. It is forbidden, for example, to use gases. The equipment of a soldier, if you take the complete set, goes off scale for 60 kg. Let's load it with another parallel system of non-lethal special means. And what will the soldier choose when he goes into battle? The answer is obvious, especially if he does not know what his task will be. Some military departments of the NATO countries had target programs: they had gases, kinetics, microwave, and acoustics. And then life quietly all this was buried.

UPM for military units is still practically non-existent in full, and has already been regulated to the limit. To use conventional weapons, no special orders from above are required. And to use non-lethal, you must first obtain the permission of the prosecutor. That is, you can forget about operational efficiency - a key factor in hostilities.

The police officers are dissatisfied with the existing OND. The disadvantages are obvious: shooting is carried out on the front projection, that is, the most vulnerable organs of the person: the eyes, the neck, the abdominal cavity, the groin. 20 years of use in Northern Ireland have shown that the accuracy of the use of rubber bullets is extremely small. In a circle with a diameter of 450 mm from a distance of 23 m, only 50% of rubber bullets fall. And finally, the use of standard means is dangerous for the person applying them. The maximum shooting range of a rubber bullet is 40 m, and any average man will get a 50 kilogram stone, a petrol bomb or any other dangerous object on 60-0,25 m.

Victor Selivanov, head of the department of the Moscow State Technical University named after N.E. Bauman; Vladimir Korenkov - director of the Special Technological Center; Denis Levin - Associate Professor of the Moscow State Technical University. N.E. Bauman; Vladimir Savostyanov - MD; Vladimir Elfimov and Sergey Lezhnin - graduate students, as well as researchers, teachers, technologists and designers of other departments of the Moscow State Technical University. N.E. Bauman. The moderator (moderator) of the round table was the author of these lines.
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  1. zloi_dekabr
    zloi_dekabr 16 November 2013 07: 30
    In the army, "non-lethal" weapons are not needed. In the internal troops and in the police - yes, it is necessary, but in the army - definitely not.
    1. Reasonable, 2,3
      Reasonable, 2,3 16 November 2013 08: 59
      Damn ahead. One in one, I wanted to say.
      1. Metlik
        Metlik 16 November 2013 14: 29
        Intelligence would not hurt anything paralyzing - to take the tongue.
        1. Aryan
          Aryan 16 November 2013 15: 55
          hostile gathered
          and here you shot a volley from a gamnomet on them soldier

          here the hostiles of the sraton field went home
          in frustrated feelings and throwing arms
          IBONEFIG !!! angry
        2. s1н7т
          s1н7т 17 November 2013 21: 27
          Quote: Metlik
          Intelligence wouldn’t hurt anything paralyzing - take the tongue

          Gee! And then what to do with the paralyzed "tongue" - neither interrogate, nor transport laughing And, by the way, I heard "take John" more often than "tongue" - such a joke laughing
    2. EdwardTich68
      EdwardTich68 16 November 2013 20: 20
      And the military police during a drunken riot in the barracks?
      1. Aryan
        Aryan 16 November 2013 20: 48
        here a theme rose somehow
        about Ukrainian police developments about shooting networks
        in which not only the fish gets confused bully
      2. s1н7т
        s1н7т 17 November 2013 21: 29
        Pipeey! There is no need for a "military police", as well as "drunken riots" in the barracks, because it is no longer an army.
    3. Nick
      Nick 17 November 2013 12: 17
      Quote: zloi_dekabr
      In the army, "non-lethal" weapons are not needed. In the internal troops and in the police - yes, it is necessary, but in the army - definitely not.

      In army intelligence units, non-lethal systems, perhaps, can be in demand, for taking the "language" for example ...
    4. Dezzed
      Dezzed 17 November 2013 20: 21
      Song tsu said something like this: The commander’s task is not to destroy the enemy’s army, but to make the enemy lose the desire to fight.

      such a victory is easier for the winner and also sheds less blood.
  2. makarov
    makarov 16 November 2013 07: 45
    ANY weapon, when used, is intended to defeat !!!
    No where, and in no teaching material (manual) does the word KILL be indicated.
    This also applies to combat weapons.
  3. tank64rus
    tank64rus 16 November 2013 08: 55
    Guys are not looking there.
  4. drop
    drop 16 November 2013 09: 01
    On this topic, interest may be caused by the fact that when eliminating terrorist acts, such as the Nord-Ost, the use of gases is advisable. I will give an example. When I was a leader on a national scale, I was treated and underwent an annual compulsory medical examination at the clinics of the 4 State University of the Ministry of Health (on the Sivtsevsky enemy). Once I had to remove a tooth. He was removed under anesthesia, which was not done with an injection into the gums, and the doctor gave me a gas through the mask. I instantly fell asleep, in a dream I felt like a tooth was removed without any pain. After a while, the doctor woke me up, there was no pain in the gum. Why cannot our special services euthanize terrorists and hostages. Then the first to neutralize and destroy without trial. It is useless to judge them; to keep them in prisons is very expensive for the country.
    1. Mikhail3
      Mikhail3 17 November 2013 22: 13
      Because the hostage has one chemistry, the terrorist has another, and the third person removes the tooth. Endocrine glands create such a different picture of chemicals inside the body that it is almost impossible to "target" the gas for a guaranteed result. Moreover, the spread of the picture, as if out of spite, is such that you cut out the terrorists - and the hostages die from the same ...
      Modern non-lethal is never a weapon. Pampering is one. Or is it a weapon - and then what kind of non-lethal? Until the human nervous system is gutted so that it can be controlled from a distance, nothing will happen. True, when this is done, we will all have no time for "non-lethal weapons" ...
  5. pahom54
    pahom54 16 November 2013 09: 56
    If they shoot at you, trying to kill, then what kind of weapon of "non-lethal" defeat can I say? Again verbiage and unnecessary conversations, especially in relation to the army.
    Cynical, but I’m bluntly saying: the army should have the most lethal-effective weapons in order to reduce the losses of its personnel.
    But about the armament of various special groups of the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the FSB (and the like) ... Also a moot point. It’s just that these groups should have various special equipment, not only traumatic weapons, and be able to use it.
  6. dropout
    dropout 16 November 2013 11: 31
    My IMHO. When releasing the hostages in "Nord-Ost" it was necessary to use the methods of General Ermolov. And let all sorts of "human rights activists" howl. For that, the results would be different.
    1. alone
      alone 16 November 2013 12: 35
      a little like Yermolov’s methods. Excuse me, but are you ready to kill women and children? If not, from which hangover do you propose to do it to others? The results would be even worse than now.

      it's time to understand that now is not the 19th century.
    2. s1н7т
      s1н7т 17 November 2013 21: 41
      Quote: dropout
      It was necessary to apply the methods of General Ermolov

      And there would be no Nord-Ost, right!
  7. Black
    Black 16 November 2013 15: 06
    Non-lethal machine gun, non-conventional SZO .... Awesome army ....
  8. scientist
    scientist 16 November 2013 17: 07
    If losses can be avoided, they must be avoided. Therefore, non-lethal weapons must develop. Now it is relevant primarily with the fact that when terrorists take hostages, it is not clear where anyone is. And non-lethal weapons can negate the advantage of scumbags accustomed to hide behind human shields from women and children. In the future, it should be expected that psychotropic brainwashing of technologies in the preparation of martyrs can spread to entire armies, peoples and states. Sentencing death to blame people who can be cured is also wrong.
  9. EdwardTich68
    EdwardTich68 16 November 2013 20: 22
    How to suppress a drunken rebellion, for example? I don’t want to shoot my own.
    1. Cat
      Cat 16 November 2013 20: 45
      Quote: EdwardTich68
      How to suppress a drunken rebellion, for example? I don’t want to shoot my own.

      and how, in fact, a drunken rebellion differs from a sober one? The fact that a person "under a degree" inadequately perceives reality and inadequately reacts to it - so sorry, they sat down at the table and raised the first glass - while still sober, which means fully aware of the possible consequences of their actions. Therefore, the punishment should be appropriate: if you do not heed the persuasion of a rubber stick, you will receive a lead bullet. Next time you will think carefully about what and with whom to pour into the glass ...
      1. EdwardTich68
        EdwardTich68 16 November 2013 21: 02
        Conversation and is about non-lethal
        1. Cat
          Cat 16 November 2013 23: 21
          Quote: EdwardTich68
          Conversation and is about non-lethal

          so a rubber stick is exactly what it is, non-lethal. A water cannon can still be added. Well, if there are few of them, then alas ... Or "lethality", or rebellion. Or one of two things.

          IMHO, the main problem of non-lethal weapons is that those against whom they use them are also perfectly aware of this very “non-lethality”. They don't really care. In the sense that you can hardly scare an inveterate fighter with a black eye or a hematoma: well, they stuffed my face today, well, think about it, and tomorrow I'll stuff someone. Business, as they say, is everyday. Again, alcoholic intoxication or the so-called. "state of passion" - very, very increase the pain threshold, respectively, reducing the impact of non-flying. Plus the crowd effect already mentioned in the comments: it hurts the front ones, but there is nowhere to run, because the back ones push.
          But the machine-gun line - quickly and efficiently turns off all habits and effects, and cuts the instinct of self-preservation, and sober up no less than 10 cubes of ice water on your head. It acts, again, not only on the front ranks - on the whole crowd in bulk. Everyone wants to live, but the body of a comrade in the crowd is not the most comfortable defense against a bullet ...
          Such garbage here =)))
          1. scientist
            scientist 17 November 2013 09: 35
            I advise you to read about the shooting of people in Zhanaozen.
            For example
            There, the authorities preferred to use military weapons, although there were plenty of ammunition with rubber bullets and water cannons.
    2. Aryan
      Aryan 17 November 2013 13: 19
      "How to suppress, for example, a drunken riot? You don't want to shoot your own people."
      beer bottle with sleeping pills
      fired on rebel positions
      and after half an hour take them warm
      and not violent and you can kick kicks
      They won’t remember request
    3. s1н7т
      s1н7т 17 November 2013 22: 00
      Quote: EdwardTich68
      How to suppress a drunken rebellion, for example?

      Elementary, respected - the promotion of sports. From childhood, from school, from the university. And no "non-lethal weapons" are needed. It's only easier - to make a weapon, probably.
  10. rumpeljschtizhen
    rumpeljschtizhen 16 November 2013 20: 47
    killed about 100 people
    strange statistics and how much this weapon prevented troubles or you will see statistics how many are killed by kitchen knives (and we will introduce the law on kitchen knives)
    1. Corsair5912
      Corsair5912 16 November 2013 21: 17
      Quote: rumpeljschtizhen
      strange statistics and how much this weapon prevented troubles or you will see statistics how many are killed by kitchen knives (and we will introduce the law on kitchen knives)

      You can kill a person with a screwdriver, a chisel, a hammer, a pencil, a lace from shoes, a boot and another thousand household items, you can’t forbid everything.
      The attacker dared when he was sure that they would not kill him. There is no war without blood.
  11. Sadikoff
    Sadikoff 17 November 2013 10: 32
    They did not mention temporary laser blinding, good against snipers.
  12. tnship2
    tnship2 17 November 2013 14: 12
    Here the question is more of a legislative base. The criminal deliberately goes to the crime and must understand that he has only two ways to seize the security forces, either hands to the top (not a fatal case) or a bullet to the tower (fatal case). The guys in uniform should not on operations in the mind sorting through options paying with their lives.
  13. mithridate
    mithridate 17 November 2013 14: 45
    Quote: Drop
    On this topic, interest may be caused by the fact that when eliminating terrorist acts, such as the Nord-Ost, the use of gases is advisable. I will give an example. When I was a leader on a national scale, I was treated and underwent an annual compulsory medical examination in the clinics of the 4th State Department of the Ministry of Health (on the Sivtsevsky enemy). Once I had to remove a tooth. He was removed under anesthesia, which was not done with an injection into the gums, and the doctor gave me a gas to breathe through the mask. I instantly fell asleep, in a dream I felt like a tooth was removed without any pain. After a while, the doctor woke me up, there was no pain in the gum. Why cannot our special services euthanize terrorists and hostages. Then the first to neutralize and destroy without trial. It is useless to judge them; keeping them in prisons is very expensive for the country.

    rabid dogs destroy
    1. scientist
      scientist 17 November 2013 20: 26
      Quote: Mithridates
      rabid dogs destroy

      It is necessary to restore hard labor, let him choose either hard labor for the good of the state with the hope of pardon or death. In Russia, uranium mines and mines from where you can’t escape enough. In addition, there is always the possibility of a miscarriage of justice, this is very important not only for the uptake, but also for the whole state and people who do not turn into murderers. In addition, the guarantee of life, even for the worst terrorist, is a good incentive to stop resistance during the seizure, which significantly reduces the casualties among the police and special services, as well as hostages during the seizure.
  14. Boris63
    Boris63 17 November 2013 15: 18
    An acquaintance of mine served in the Typhoon unit, he said that all kinds of specials. funds were used almost always (with caution). But their "work", basically, takes place in a fairly limited space with a fairly small number of criminals.
  15. s1н7т
    s1н7т 17 November 2013 22: 43
    Once in the army, I remember, they used "non-lethal". A miracle with a knife is sitting in the basement (before that, he stabbed someone, it seems). The Germans (it was in the GSVG) say - we don't want to shoot a Russian, decide for yourself. The solution is h.z. how many "blue eyes" in the basement, he crawled out - no and without a knife. But this is not the business of the army. Army - ultima ratio regnum, from memory. The last argument of the kings. When nothing else will help. An extreme case. Lethal.
  16. gabtatiana
    gabtatiana 20 November 2013 19: 34
    Participant of the round table Abakumova O.V. (legal problems of using OND)
    Psychophysical weapons are actively used to ensure the external and internal security of the country, as well as to combat terrorism.
    ... The problem is that this is part of the truth. Another truth is that the same weapon is designed to covertly influence ordinary law-abiding citizens. The goal is the tacit control and management of the civilian population, as well as for the destruction of objectionable persons. To test psychophysical weapons, the apartments of law-abiding citizens, secretly stuffed with special equipment and turned into torture chambers, are used as landfills. The targets are citizens themselves, their children and grandchildren, without their knowledge and consent.
    Also, psiterror is actively used by criminal structures, "black realtors". Raiders with the help of specials. means they literally "smoke" people out of their apartments, drive them to suicide, arrange strokes, heart attacks, divorce spouses, sow enmity and hatred between relatives.
    Every year the number of victims of psiterror increases.
    Coincidence? O.V. Abakumova my neighbor is the owner of 2 apartments on the landing. My family and I are the next victims of psychophysical weapons. I am not a dissident, not an oppositionist, I was not interested in politics, our family did not even watch TV. On the contrary, I am "verified, rechecked": my father worked all his life at the Almaz Central Design Bureau (Almaz-Antey State Design Bureau of the Ministry of Defense), married a cadet of VUMO (Military University of the Ministry of Defense, formerly VIIYa), lived for 5 years on on the territory of the Russian Embassy in China, worked in the Aeroflot office in Beijing. In MSTU them. N.E. Bauman My close relatives studied - brother, cousin, nephew. About psychophysical weapons did not hear anything. Neither I, nor members of my family suffered from mental illnesses (otherwise I would not have been released to China and kept for 5 years on the territory of the Russian Embassy). In general, she was practically not sick; she went in for sports all her life.
    When I felt obvious acoustic tremors, after which my health sharply worsened, I called my ex-husband. He advised me to contact the FSB personally. Which I did. I wrote a statement and drove him to the Lubyanka. An announcement hangs in the reception of the FSB, I don’t remember the text, but the point is that you don’t need to contact this agency for wave action. Apparently - a lot of calls.
    What is it? Are employees of former "mailboxes", graduates of universities related to the development of psychophysical weapons, embassy workers, trade representatives and their families under the "special" attention of criminal structures?