Military Review

Weapons are prohibited. Part of 1. Napalm

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Many Soviet citizens found out what napalm is only in the 1960s, watching television reports from warring Vietnam. Affected people, terrible burns, dead children, burning settlements caused just indignation of citizens. Even aviation the blow, which was shot from afar, looked terrible. Over the Vietnamese jungle, Phantoms or Skyhawks entered the combat course, at some point in time a large cigar-shaped tank, which looked like a fuel tank, was separated from their belly. Then this tank randomly somersaulted in the sky until it touched the ground. At that moment he burst and a whole sea of ​​fire spread from it, from which it was impossible to escape.


Ban

Napalm was banned on the basis of a document that entered into force on December 2 1983 of the year.

As of January 2012, this document was ratified by 99 countries of the world, including Russia.

The main prohibition document: Protocol 3 (on the prohibition or restriction of the use of incendiary weapons). This protocol was an addition to the convention adopted by the UN in 1980 on the prohibition or restriction of the use of specific types of conventional weapons.

The subject of the ban on the 3 Protocol was the use of napalm and other types of incendiary weapons against civilians.



Napalm

Gasoline as a fuel has a very high energy density - just one filled beer bottle is enough for a vehicle weighing more than 1 tons to drive 5, or even more kilometers. However, if you splash it on thick wet logs, the fire will flare up, but you may not be able to make a fire. The fire will quickly calm down. As incendiary means just gasoline was not good. Napalm, which is a gasoline (sometimes a different type of fuel), combined with a thickener, as well as a variety of additives, the main purpose of which is to increase the temperature of combustion of the mixture, became an ideal tool.

The resulting mixture is able to adhere to various surfaces, even vertically arranged, and it burns much longer than regular gasoline. Napalm as a weapon was invented by the Americans during the Second World War. Initially, they used natural rubber as a thickener for the mixture. But since Southeast Asia (the main producer of Hevea juice) was occupied by Japan, he had to look for a replacement.

The word "napalm" is not by chance reminiscent of the word "palm". Instead of rubber, it was decided to use a mixture based on aluminum salts of fatty acids - naphthenic and palmitic. These salts have a texture that is similar to soap. Palmitic acid was once isolated by scientists from coconut oil, which grows on palm trees (hence the name). The word napalm also became derived from the first two syllables of the names of the acids used.



Napalm was first created at 1942-43 at Harvard University, with Professor Louis F. Fizer as the leader of this project. The professor and his colleagues were mixing the powder of fatty acid salts with gasoline, after which the mixture turned into a sticky and viscous liquid, which had a brown color.

For the first time in combat conditions, a new weapon was tested on 17 on July 1944 of the year when an air strike was launched against German fuel depots located near the city of Coutances (France). After that, the novelty was tested in another theater of military operations - in the Pacific against the Japanese troops. Napalm was used to smoke Japanese soldiers from dugouts and pillboxes in the occupied islands. Napalm was used during the bombardment of the German city of Dresden, which was marked by special brutality, which occurred in February 1945: the unbearable heat in the old city, which was burnt with fires, literally melted people's bodies.

However, after the end of the Second World War, the recipe for napalm significantly changed. After the end of the conflict in Korea in the interests of the American army, a new species was created - napalm-B In this type of napalm, palmitic acid is no longer used. The new fire mix on 33% consisted of gasoline, on 21% of benzene and on 46% of polystyrene. The new weapon was much stronger than the previous one. Napalm B burned significantly longer - not 15-30 seconds, but up to 10 minutes. It was almost impossible to remove it from the skin; at the same time, during burning, it not only burned through it, but also caused terrible pain to the person (the burning temperature was 800-1200 degrees Celsius). At the same time, in the process of burning, napalm was very active in emitting carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide, burning out all the oxygen in the area, which made it possible to hit enemy soldiers who were able to hide in dugouts, bunkers, and caves. These unfortunates died from suffocation and terrible heat.



Napalm was widely used in traditional ammunition: aerial bombs, artillery shells, mines, hand grenades, mechanized and wearable (backpack) flamethrowers, incendiary cartridges. Napalm was used to destroy enemy personnel and equipment, and to create fires. It was widely used in many conflicts of the 20th century, beginning with the Second World War. It was used by American aircraft in Korea in the 1950-1953 years and was especially widespread during the Vietnam War in the 1964-1973 years, it was also used by the Turkish army to suppress Kurdish uprisings.

In Vietnam, against the Viet Cong (National Front for the Liberation of the Country), the American army widely used practically its entire arsenal of weapons of destruction, with the exception of nuclear weapons only. At the same time, napalm itself could be attributed to weapons of mass destruction. For napalm it was completely indifferent how many living creatures are in the zone of its defeat, he is ready to burn everything he gets. Understanding this, the UN adopted a document that prohibited the use of napalm. The use of incendiary weapons was officially recognized as a barbaric method of warfare.

Although gasoline was commonly used as a liquid fuel in napalm production, its color could be different. It depended on the fuel grade and thickener used, varying from completely colorless or clear liquid to brown or pink. All napalm mixtures were very flammable and burned, creating a temperature up to 1200 degrees Celsius at the time of burning (the calorific value reached 10 000 kcal / kg). The rate at which the mixture burned out was largely dependent on the thickener used and the degree of thickening. The density of most mixtures reached 0,8-0,9 g / cm3. When added to the mixture of light metals (magnesium, sodium) or phosphorus, it was possible to obtain "supernapalm". This type of napalm is most actively ignited on wet surfaces, as well as on snow (that is, it was especially effective in the humid jungle or in northern countries, for example, Russia).



Napalm is very flammable, but it burns slowly (some bunches continue to burn for up to 10 minutes). At the same time, the highest burning temperature in 800-1200 degrees is reached in the first minute, and then gradually decreases. The burning rate of napalm mixtures can be adjusted using additives in the form of wood flour, asphalt, and various resins. At the same time, the effect of the use of napalm was impossible to predict, since the damaging effect of the mixture was spread in an uncontrolled manner. There are a huge number of cases when innocent civilians suffered from the use of napalm.

Due to the huge combustion temperature, this substance simply burned all the oxygen within a radius of several meters from the fire. In addition, the use of napalm led to suffocation, which occurred in people from toxic products formed during its combustion, for example, carbon monoxide. All this posed a serious threat even to people who were in shelters at the time of the strike. Since napalm is lighter than water, it does not sink, floating on its surface, and is not extinguished by water. If only 1 gram of napalm gets on human skin, it can cause very severe damage. Napalm has an extremely strong moral and psychological effect on people, suppressing their ability to offer active resistance. The fact that the infantry is afraid of fire was established during the First World War. The infantrymen could stoically wait for artillery shelling and bombing, but the use of flamethrowers often terrified them.

Taking into account the strong damaging effect and uncontrolled spread of the flame, the 1983 Protocol (on the prohibition or restriction of the use of incendiary weapons) was adopted in 3, which was an addition to the signed UN Convention on the prohibition or restriction of the use of specific conventional weapons. This protocol outlawed napalm. But not all countries have signed the document. It was signed by a little less than 100 states, while the USA accepted the protocol with reservation, reserving the right to use incendiary weapons during attacks of military facilities located among “congregations of civilians”, if such attacks would entail minimal human casualties. As a result, everything depends on the definition of which sacrifices can be considered minimal. It is worth noting that some former Soviet republics did not join the protocol either. So, after the collapse of the USSR, the 4 protocol of the former republics did not sign the protocol: Azerbaijan, Armenia, Kazakhstan, and Kyrgyzstan.

Information sources:
http://www.popmech.ru/technologies/13660-oruzhie-vne-zakona-10-zapreshchennykh-vooruzheniy/#full
http://fb.ru/article/147094/chto-takoe-napalm-primenenie-i-sostav-napalma
http://ognemet.net/51a.php
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38 comments
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  1. Imperialkolorad
    Imperialkolorad 12 November 2014 08: 37
    +14
    What is called guess which exclusively democratic country is mainly seen in the use of this exclusively humane type of weapon?
    1. Bongo
      Bongo 12 November 2014 08: 57
      +14
      Quote: ImperialKolorad
      What is called guess which exclusively democratic country is mainly seen in the use of this exclusively humane type of weapon?

      And what, by definition, is there a "humane weapon"? In Afghanistan and Chechnya, our Air Force used ZBs (incendiary aircraft tanks) equipped with similar fire mixtures. So there is no need to politicize and oppress.
      1. La-5
        La-5 12 November 2014 09: 29
        +12
        On this score, there are two consistent proverbs - "In war, all methods are good" and "Winners are not judged", the warring parties for the most part do not care about moral principles when the success of the operation and / or the lives of soldiers is at stake. They fight as best they can and as they can, often without limiting themselves in their means.
        1. creak
          creak 12 November 2014 10: 46
          +8
          Quote: La-5
          What is called guess which exclusively democratic country is mainly seen in the use of this exclusively humane type of weapon?


          I dare to believe that in its damaging factors and the psychological impact of CBT Pinocchio (project 634) is significantly superior to napalm. This system was successfully used at the final stage of the war in Afghanistan and in Chechnya (during the assault on the village of Komsomolskoye).
          There is no need to talk about Solntsepek - in war as in war, and what does democracy have to do with this? The task is solved by all the means available to the commander and there are no humane weapons.
          PSA Red Army flamethrowers against the Wehrmacht also should not be used?
          1. ICT
            ICT 13 November 2014 02: 58
            0
            Quote: ranger
            and in Chechnya (during the storming of the village of Komsomolskoye).


            I was unable to find how I was looking for a video (although I clearly remember a direct hit in the defending house and the subsequent shooting from it after that)
      2. svp67
        svp67 12 November 2014 09: 55
        +5
        Quote: Bongo
        So it’s not worth politicizing and oppressing.

        Yes, the thing is that you need to carefully read, it’s said
        The prohibition of Protocol 3 was the use of napalm and other types of incendiary weapons against civilians
        That is against NECOMBATANTS - NEVER, KOMBANATS RECEIVE COMPLETELY.
        1. Bongo
          Bongo 12 November 2014 10: 29
          +7
          Quote: svp67
          Yes, the thing is that you need to carefully read, it said the subject of the prohibition of the 3 Protocol was the use of napalm and other types of incendiary weapons against civilians

          Do you seriously believe that in real combat when using aviation weapons, someone makes a distinction between KOMBANATS and NONKOMBATANTS?
          1. svp67
            svp67 12 November 2014 10: 32
            +10
            Quote: Bongo
            Do you seriously believe that in real combat when using aviation weapons, someone makes a distinction between KOMBANATS and NONKOMBATANTS?
            No. But I also know that the losers then “pay for everything,” including for breaking what everyone breaks. And not some "excuses", like - "we carried out the order", do not pass. Nuremberg showed this perfectly.
            1. Tommygun
              Tommygun 12 November 2014 11: 22
              +8
              There is such a dock. the film "Fog of War" with McNamara.
              He quotes the words of Curtis Le May:
              "If we lost the war, we would be tried as war criminals!"
      3. Nayhas
        Nayhas 12 November 2014 18: 38
        +4
        Quote: Bongo
        And what, by definition, is there a "humane weapon"?

        The expression "humane weapon" and-di-ot-sko-e. Absolutely incompatible terms ...
        1. kolyhalovs
          kolyhalovs 13 November 2014 16: 17
          0
          The guillotine was invented from humane motives. True, this is not quite a weapon ...
  2. s.cot
    s.cot 12 November 2014 09: 47
    +4
    "What exactly is napalm, many Soviet citizens learned only in the 1960s, watching television reports from the warring Vietnam." I don't know what country the author lived in, but in the 70s, TVs were not in every apartment. The article is interesting.
    1. Silumin
      Silumin 25 November 2014 22: 41
      +1
      and we ourselves cooked napalm, melted the soap and carefully poured gas into it. It’s not possible to put out, it burned for about three minutes.
  3. Tamanskiy
    Tamanskiy 12 November 2014 10: 16
    +2
    That would be to test it, on the creators themselves ...
  4. 505506
    505506 12 November 2014 10: 45
    +2
    It was this panic fear of fire, and did not give a chance to get captured by the flamethrowers.
    1. Alex
      Alex 12 November 2014 22: 00
      +4
      Quote: 505506
      It was this panic fear of fire, and did not give a chance to get captured by the flamethrowers.

      Once on "Discovery" the story was about British flamethrower tanks (EMNIP, "Crocodile" on the base of "Churchill"), they said that the Germans shot captive crews right next to the damaged vehicles. The fear of fire, however, is from animal times.
  5. Tommygun
    Tommygun 12 November 2014 10: 48
    0
    And what in the light of this protocol does the dill bombardment of Semenovka look like?
  6. kirgudu
    kirgudu 12 November 2014 10: 56
    0
    No UN protocols and filinks hinder ukraine's use of phosphorus incendiary ammunition against civilians.
    1. Tommygun
      Tommygun 12 November 2014 11: 20
      0
      Because they are for democracy and European values!
  7. Bongo
    Bongo 12 November 2014 11: 58
    +8
    Napalm was widely used in traditional ammunition: aircraft bombs, artillery shells, mines, hand grenades, in mechanized and wearable (knapsack) flamethrowers, incendiary cartridges.

    Dear author, I did not mention and comment on some "inaccuracies" in this publication. But past "cartridges"I could not pass ... Tell me in what small arms and what caliber these cartridges were used.
    1. il grand casino
      il grand casino 12 November 2014 12: 06
      +4
      cartridge for 155mm howitzers laughing
      1. Bongo
        Bongo 12 November 2014 12: 12
        +4
        Quote: il grand casino
        cartridge for 155mm howitzers

        Yes very funny laughing . But I have to clarify this issue.
        Even in large-caliber artillery incendiary shells, liquid fire mixtures are not currently used. To equip incendiary shells and mines, either white phosphorus or pyro-mixtures based on magnesium, aluminum or cerium in combination with various oxidizing agents are used.
        1. il grand casino
          il grand casino 12 November 2014 13: 05
          +2
          Yes, I am aware, but thanks anyway for the information. drinks
    2. psiho117
      psiho117 12 November 2014 19: 02
      +2
      Quote: Bongo

      Dear author, I did not mention and comment on some "inaccuracies" in this publication. But past "cartridges"I could not pass ... Tell me in what small arms and what caliber these cartridges were used.


      DM-24 and DM-34

      So yes, it's a cartridge. Incendiary.
      the truth is equipped not with a napalm but with a magnesium-phosphorus mixture.
      1. Bongo
        Bongo 13 November 2014 02: 32
        +2
        Quote: psiho117
        So yes, it's a cartridge. Incendiary. The truth is equipped not with a napalm but with a magnesium-phosphorus mixture.

        We are talking about the equipment of incendiary cartridges with napalm, which is absolutely not true. Equipping incendiary, armor-piercing incendiary and tracer bullets to small arms cartridges with various solid pyrotechnic compositions based on magnesium, phosphorus and termite, etc. is a common thing.
  8. aszzz888
    aszzz888 12 November 2014 12: 05
    0
    Pour the entire State Department with napalm ... at the same time and warm yourself!
  9. Maksimovich
    Maksimovich 12 November 2014 12: 48
    +5
    He served in 93 in a chemical battalion, the summer BBC liquid (napalm) was unmeasured, another 85 years of production in 200 liter barrels. They were burned mainly at the proving ground.
    1. 16112014nk
      16112014nk 12 November 2014 19: 33
      +3
      And I served in 71-73. The same, pink napalm, in barrels of 200 liters. And also used at the training ground.
    2. The comment was deleted.
    3. Mwg
      Mwg 13 November 2014 19: 56
      0
      Happy GO Day! I myself served there, as the BBC burns - I know))) Current barrels of thermos for 150 liters. )
  10. Grigorievich
    Grigorievich 12 November 2014 13: 51
    +2
    The Vietnamese learned to deal with napalm: they covered their trenches with a dome made of freshly cut branches - the drips dripped and managed to get out of the affected area while it burned. ball bombs. Of course, if at the epicenter, nothing will help here.
  11. bekjan
    bekjan 12 November 2014 14: 12
    0
    If you want to defeat the enemy, use his own weapon against him.
  12. Sergey-8848
    Sergey-8848 12 November 2014 14: 51
    +1
    All kinds of means of war were, are, and will be used, and without regard to ethical considerations, but only with an eye to achieving the strategic effect as quickly as possible. That is why ZOMP in normal no one cancels the armies. If some byaka is invented, then first of all it is considered as a potential combat means, and only then it turns out that it (this byaka) can also vacuum, for example. So it would not be necessary to make an inhuman horror story out of napalm. The very notion: "humanitarian" weapon - is somewhere near the recent singers from Austria.
    1. Vasya Zhulbin
      Vasya Zhulbin April 15 2022 11: 34
      0
      One dies in a month of agony from cancer, and the other in a day from plague and smallpox, or how Zhirinovsky quietly leaves the coronavirus in two months.
  13. bionik
    bionik 12 November 2014 17: 58
    +2
    On June 8, 1972, a photograph of the girl Kim Fook was taken by British photographer Nick Ut in the area of ​​the village of Chang Bang. A shot of Napalm in Vietnam became one of the most famous photos of the Vietnam War. Despite the severe burns, the girl survived.
    1. bionik
      bionik 12 November 2014 18: 04
      +10
      Kim Fook 90s
  14. Lord of Wrath
    Lord of Wrath 24 November 2014 15: 35
    +2
    Nobody banned napalm as such! The prohibition applies to "use against the PEACEFUL population"
    About "supernapalm" is generally heresy. Sodium-magnesium is added to make the mixture self-ignite in air.
  15. izGOI
    izGOI 29 November 2014 00: 47
    0
    Maidan also used not just gasoline in "Grushevsky's cocktails", but with the addition of polystyrene. One of the variants of napalm.
  16. mehmeh
    mehmeh 1 December 2014 17: 18
    0
    Weapons against humans are generally inhumane to use
    Humanism in war is unacceptable to the enemy. It is suicide. humanely needs to be defenseless (civilian and prisoner of war)
  17. tolyasik0577
    tolyasik0577 2 December 2014 16: 32
    -1
    I read, in my opinion, on the same resource, that one of the first shells for the Katyusha guards mortar contained napalm. It is no secret that "Katyusha shocked the Nazis, to which the Reich command filed a protest to the Soviet command against the use of napalm in charges - if the Soviet Union does not give up napalm, Germany will behave more harshly with the civilian population in the occupied territories.
    1. Bongo
      Bongo 3 December 2014 14: 25
      +2
      Quote: tolyasik0577
      I read, in my opinion, on the same resource, that one of the first shells for the Katyusha guards mortar contained napalm. It is no secret that "Katyusha shocked the Nazis, to which the Reich command filed a protest to the Soviet command against the use of napalm in charges - if the Soviet Union does not give up napalm, Germany will behave more harshly with the civilian population in the occupied territories.


      Yes, to put it mildly contradictory statements on VO I have not read for a long time lol Maybe there was a shock from the Katyusha, but the RS-132 shells were definitely not equipped with napalm No. Particularly amusing was the statement about the "protest of the Reich command", despite the fact that throughout the war, our Air Force used ampoules with KS incendiary liquid, and the Soviet civilian population in the occupied territories was massively destroyed. Or do you not know?
  18. Dees
    Dees April 18 2015 21: 05
    0
    Napalm like cluster bombs. It is officially banned, but in practice it is. And he is not needed, his main time has passed. Now there are new ones. more powerful incendiary substances. By the way, the Germans were the first who invented the likeness of napalm in World War II.