UnNews:NATO to fire color-coded dye to distinguish friends from foes
5 April 2011
The military alliance has admitted that, because of recent "friendly fire" accidents, the decision to use dye would be part of the next flying missions. This has become necessary, says NATO, because neither side is wearing regular uniforms and it is difficult to "kill or leave alone" when you're flying past at high speed.
So, on their next sorties, jets will be firing green dye at the Gaddafi forces and red dye at the rebels. Both dyes have been chemically enhanced to give off slightly different odors that can be picked up by reconnaissance drones. This way, NATO hopes it will decimate more of the "Greens" and leave the "Reds" alone.
The Secretary General of NATO, Anders Fogh Rasmussen, said it "wasn't ideal...but it was cheap" and that NATO had plenty of this special paint in reserve, as they often use it when playing war games. Speaking at NATO's headquarters in Brussels he added:
It became necessary to fire paint at the two sides because, to be frank, we were having problems working out who are the good guys and who are the bad boys. Our American allies suggested dropping black hats on the enemy to make it easier to identify the evil forces but it was decided that Stetsons are not the favored headgear in Libya. Also, we didn't think Colonel Gaddafi would play fair on an even battlefield.
Rasmussen said there was also a "Plan B" if the war went on and they ran out of paint. He was reluctant to discuss this fallback plan, in case there was a run on frilly ribbons.
- Staff "NATO running out of paint?" The Guardian, April 05, 2011