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China Buying US Directed Sound 'Weapon'

samzenpus posted more than 6 years ago | from the people's-sound-cannon dept.

Government 350

holy_calamity writes "The directed sound weapon made by US company ATC is being exported to the Chinese police, despite the public law banning sales of weapons to China. Turns out that such 'non-lethal' technologies are not covered by this law — an omission that may become more widely known if they are used to quell high-profile protests during the Olympics."

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Perspective (0)

youthoftoday (975074) | more than 6 years ago | (#23411820)

C'mon. Sound weapons? That's the least of it.

Re:Perspective (0, Offtopic)

ILuvRamen (1026668) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412384)

Yeah, I know. We better not sell them our facial recognition technology or they could track people like one big Britain! jk, they'd just return it claiming it didn't work ;) rofl
P.S. if you don't get that, you're dumb

Re:Perspective (2, Funny)

LaskoVortex (1153471) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412656)

if you don't get that, you're dumb

I get it and I resemble that remark.

Non-lethal? (5, Informative)

celtic_hackr (579828) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412760)

Your incredulous attitude is troubling.

The sound weapon being sold may be non-lethal, but who is to say they won't RE the device and make lethal sound weapons. Sound can kill. If you stand next to a speaker when 160db of sound comes out of it, you'll be dead. NASA uses sound to test the tiles on the shuttle, anyone caught inside that tester would be killed instantly when the sound came on.

1st post (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23411826)

Noooooooooooo!

Gotta keep them upiddy Tibetans in line. (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23411834)

What a great way to oppress folks and not leave bloody bodies around for cameras!

But of coarse. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23412068)

That is what they were designed for here in the US.

Re:But of coarse. FUCK that design intent... (1)

davidsyes (765062) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412702)

So, to work around it, all protesters need to have sonic-activated bleed-makers. Insert in the ear, or as a collar around the neck, tuned specifically to government frequencies. When the government uses said offensive device, the "sound proof" will be earmarked or collared around the victims/protesters/dissidents.

ANY time some damned government (regardless of the country, EVEN if it's the u.s.a) dares to make zero-evidence weapons, a defiant nullification of anonymity should be created in the event the weapon's use is domestic vs true battlefield. Damned weaponeers and deviant policy makers...

Sounds to ME like THEY need a "ring around the collar"...

Re:Gotta keep them upiddy Tibetans in line. (2, Funny)

iNaya (1049686) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412112)

If I were to be oppressed, I would much rather be oppressed by one of these things than a bullet. I don't see the problem. Next up: China buys rubber bullets, news at 9.

Re:Gotta keep them upiddy Tibetans in line. (1)

youthoftoday (975074) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412320)

I wasn't trivialising the weapons themselves. I think we've learned not to trivialise anything about China. I'm saying that if an arms dealer wants to sell any kind of weapon from any country to any country, they can do it very easily indeed. And many do.

Re:Gotta keep them upiddy Tibetans in line. (5, Insightful)

SmokeyTheBalrog (996551) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412522)

The problem is, it takes a lot more justification to fire a bullet than it does to use one of these.

One of these and 2 or 3 people can effectively fight a crowd of thousands. In fact there is no reason for any government NOT to use these to quell their population and keep them goose stepping in line... except for morals.

Furthermore, if a group or government is willing to use a cheap bullet in a situation they would be highly unlikely to purchase, train crews, and deploy these expensive non-lethal weapons.

While these weapons definitely have their uses, they can also easily be abused. Perhaps even more easily than lethal weapons, since there is supposedly no lasting damage done. (Unlike rubber or plastic bullets which cause moderate too severe damage, can be deadly and are inaccurate.) I expect China to get a lot of use out of their purchase from now on.

And on a final note, a lot of these weapons CAN be adjust to cause permanent damage. A lot of the R&D for these weapons was to design a targeting system to keep them from doing that. Change some settings and depending on the weapon large portions of a targeted crowd may never hear again or may never see again.

Re:Gotta keep them upiddy Tibetans in line. (3, Funny)

PlatyPaul (690601) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412730)

Unlike rubber or plastic bullets which cause moderate too [sic] severe damage, can be deadly and are inaccurate.
Actually, since they fall under the heading of incapacitating weapons, we're talking stun damage - guaranteed nonlethal (even if you overflow your remaining blocks).

And yes, if you got that, you're also going to hell, chummer.

Uh oh, that means.. (4, Funny)

somersault (912633) | more than 6 years ago | (#23411840)

the Chinese have stolen Country and Western!

Re:Uh oh, that means.. (1)

mrbluze (1034940) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412100)

the Chinese have stolen Country and Western!
Well it WAS used as a torture weapon against prisoners in Iraq, so it would be perfect for China.

My achey breaky heart (1)

Bored MPA (1202335) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412118)

Might blow up and kill this man...woooooooo

!!Are we sure Garth Brooks isn't a lethal weapon or in violation of the geneva conventions? I mean I heard about them playing Eminem loud at guantanamo to increase stress levels, but Garth Brooks...that would obscene. And from a strategic perspective, should we really give away our best interrogation techniques to the chinese?

Water boarding with achey breaky heart in the background? The horror.

Re:My achey breaky heart (1)

phoenixwade (997892) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412302)

Might blow up and kill this man...woooooooo

!!Are we sure Garth Brooks isn't a lethal weapon or in violation of the geneva conventions? I mean I heard about them playing Eminem loud at guantanamo to increase stress levels, but Garth Brooks...that would obscene. And from a strategic perspective, should we really give away our best interrogation techniques to the chinese?

Water boarding with achey breaky heart in the background? The horror.
I shouldn't say this, because C&W isn't a preferred genre of mine, but Garth Brooks didn't do that song - It was Billy Ray Cyrus [wikipedia.org]

Re:My achey breaky heart (1)

Bored MPA (1202335) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412412)

LOL, +5 culturally insightful

funny, i always thought it was garth brooks...apparently i REALLY didnt learn anything growing up in North Carolina

Re:My achey breaky heart (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412504)

Does anybody learn anything growing up in North Carolina?

(Yeah, this is the obvious, obnoxious joke to make, but it is also the joke that you have to make when someone walks into it at full speed.)

Re:My achey breaky heart (1)

Bored MPA (1202335) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412736)

Not in the 80s they didn't. Hell, I didn't really understand the meaning of f(x) until I took CS classes--my math instruction was that craptacular.

Not to mention that I went to a country high school where rednecks in trucks drove past with confederate flags flying and there were 10 black folks (and no latino, jews, asians, etc). My senior year, someone asked me if I was albino...now, I'm a white guy with curly brown hair so I just assumed he didn't know what it meant. At least not until 10 years later when I was hanging out with some friends in a hiphop bar in San Fran and related the story to my friend Freddie Mac. Freddie laughed pretty damn hard and said, "He thought you was a black man."

I suppose it's funny that the KKK crowd in NC was so clueless that instead of thinking i was a curly haired jewish boy they assumed I was a black man with hair dye and contact lenses.

Re:Uh oh, that means.. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23412276)

You must be American. If you were Canadian like me, you'd be wondering how they got their hands on Celine Dion.

Re:Uh oh, that means.. (2, Funny)

somersault (912633) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412748)

I'm actually Scottish, and was having a hard time of thinking of any US bands I know that suck badly enough to be considered weaponisable. If it was a british weapon, I was going to go with the Spice Girls.

Re:Uh oh, that means.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23412518)

Ok this is the funniest comeback I have head in a long time. Damn my lunch came up through my nose - a difficult thing when you are eating vegetables. Well done sir.
Oh yeah and the excellent Billy Ray Cyrus response was just perfect - I am in a happy place now.

Re:Uh oh, that means.. (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412758)

I hope your snorted vegetables continue to make you happy for some time to come

Re:Uh oh, that means.. (1)

jimmux (1096839) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412800)

But... that's both kinds of music! Oh no!

Firesale. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23411846)

Corporations are not American.

The Long Range Acoustic Device(TM) (LRAD®) is a highly directional acoustic array that is designed for long-range communication and unmistakable warning. The LRAD device can issue a verbal warning and has the capability of following up with a deterrent tone to influence behavior or determine intent

Hopefully it'll only be used to blast the music I like, at a volume I can tolerate.

The Chinese can be trusted with technology and support individual freedoms in and outside their borders.

Yes let's... (-1, Offtopic)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 6 years ago | (#23411848)

Let's protest the Chinese occupation of Tibet for the past 60 years - most of which have been peaceful, and completely ignore the US occupation of Iraq. In fact it's a great excuse to forget Iraq completely, right?

Re:Yes let's... (5, Insightful)

willyhill (965620) | more than 6 years ago | (#23411958)

most of which have been peaceful

Once they finished slaughtering the objectors it sure got quiet over there for a while, didn't it?

and completely ignore the US occupation of Iraq

You're right, I wonder what became of that whole thing? I haven't seen that come up in the media lately... oh wait.

Re:Yes let's... (0, Flamebait)

timeOday (582209) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412128)

From everything I have seen lately, the vast majority of Chinese are very happy with their government at the moment, so I question the likelihood of any mass protests during the Olympics. I disagree they are all silently cowering in fear; rather, my impression is they're very happy with all their newfound wealth and growing power.

Re:Yes let's... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23412180)

>>. I disagree they are all silently cowering in fear; rather, my impression is they're very happy with all their newfound wealth and growing power.

I suppose you're referring to the ones who weren't murdered by the government during the Tiannamen Square protests.

The bastards. How dare they wish to have a representative government?

Re:Yes let's... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23412184)

it's illegal to have an outspoken opinion of the PRC.

the American President, good, bad or evil, at least they can speak out against him/her and the Office.

Re:Yes let's... (5, Interesting)

willyhill (965620) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412284)

I very much doubt "the vast majority" are. I'm sure the ones that live in the large cities and have well-paying jobs are, but the actual vast majority of Chinese still live at or below subsistence levels. I'm also pretty sure that the members of Falun Gong and all those people that got nailed during the Tiannamen square protests would not agree with you. And let's not forget the millions who are victims of widespread corruption, the families of criminals that are executed for petty crimes, the ones that are sick because of rampant environmental problems caused by unchecked industrial growth, etc.

The images of pretty affluent Chinese living in modern-looking cities we've come to enjoy in the Western media are not exactly indicative of what actually goes on over there. It's a big country with a billion people.

In any case, it's illegal to express negative feelings about the glorious Communist Party or its leaders, so I'm not sure who you've been talking to over there. Just about every Chinese I've ever met here in the US love their country, but they've rarely had anything but negative things to say about their government, regardless of the era they happened to leave.

MOD PARENT UP (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23412450)

I'm tired of people like the GP defending China with "I think x and y" opinions that don't hold up to simple scrutiny or common sense.

Re:Yes let's... (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23412294)

Pardon me, your brightness, but you might want to do just a tad bit of research regarding the distribution of that "wealth and power". You'll find (having lived and worked in China) as I did that it is almost entirely held by the communist elite. Unless you call working a mindless factory job for the equivalent of $10/mo. wealthy and or powerful. Oh, and don't forget that wealth-building beatings you'll be getting if your power isn't super enough on the lead-paint toy assembly line. God you're a jackass.

Re:Yes let's... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23412314)

I'm glad that is your "impression." I've been there, and the majority of them are not happy, because as they grow in wealth they also grow in knowledge, and those in the growing middle class are not happy with their lack of basic freedoms many in the western world enjoy daily.

Re:Yes let's... (4, Interesting)

WindowlessView (703773) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412478)

the vast majority of Chinese are very happy with their government at the moment

On the other hand, it was recently reported that there were over 85,000 protests in China last year, some of them violent. That is a staggering number. I suspect these sound machines will see a lot of action.

Free Tibet!! (4, Funny)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 6 years ago | (#23411854)

While stocks last.

Not leathal? (1)

Hojima (1228978) | more than 6 years ago | (#23411866)

This may be something to test on myth busters, but can't you die from your eardrums bleeding into your head?

Re:Not leathal? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23411984)

No, but it makes a target easier to shoot if they stop running, clasp their ears and lie on the ground.

We're exporting (2, Funny)

geekoid (135745) | more than 6 years ago | (#23411878)

Rosanne Barr? Cool.

Sound from Hell (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23411916)

This weapon is just a large boombox playing Kevin Federline's latest CD...

Is it really a weapon? (2, Interesting)

JSBiff (87824) | more than 6 years ago | (#23411938)

I don't really know much about this device, but let's, for the moment, assume it can't actually hurt anyone, just make them uncomfortable / stun them. Is it really a weapon then?

Re:Is it really a weapon? (3, Interesting)

lymond01 (314120) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412002)

I think anything used with intent to harm (and stunning would be "harm") is defined as a weapon under most U.S. laws. See Ms. Green in the library with the candlestick for more details.

Not to start a slashwar, but our government has redefined many standard terms in the past 8 years, so a weapon may be classified as anything more destructive than the Death Star. Everything else is called "French Toast" and is clearly non-threatening in the greater scheme of things.

Re:Is it really a weapon? (2, Funny)

Bloodoflethe (1058166) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412268)

Freedom toast, mister!

Re:Is it really a weapon? (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412304)

Get in the box.

Re:Is it really a weapon? (1)

popeye44 (929152) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412792)

It uses Hyper Sonic sound if memory serves. There was a big hoopla a few years back about it being the next big thing. Our Navy uses it for close ship to ship communication because it can't be hacked or seen like lights.

If you are in front of it you hear it.. if you aren't you don't. So aiming it at someone in a torpedo like device and making them puke is fairly easy by sending sound waves they literally can't stomach.
I'm still waiting for the tech to hit home.. but there are some videos of it in action "the sound devices not the sick stick"

Re:Is it really a weapon? (4, Insightful)

Overzeetop (214511) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412024)

I'd say if it has the ability to disable a person (even temporarily) or cause significant/severe discomfort at the press of a button, it could be a weapon. Tasers, rubber bullets, and tear gas don't kill (many) people either.

That's not to say it can't be used for legitimate purposes; there are just many people who just don't trust China. Honestly, there are a lot of countries who might not be trusted with such equipment. The US is not necessarily excluded from that list, but it's mostly determined by whether you approve or disapprove of the policies of the people behind the trigger.

Re:Is it really a weapon? (1)

Borathian (1288282) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412116)

Non lethal weapons are still weapons.

Re:Is it really a weapon? HAIL-LOHHH! Still ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23412236)

One HAIL of a weapon... All HAIL will be breaking loose... if misused...

Re:Is it really a weapon? Hayull-loohhh (0, Redundant)

davidsyes (765062) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412346)

Damned anonymous button....

One HAIL of a weapon. All HAIL will be breaking loose -- if misused...

Re:Is it really a weapon? (1)

nbert (785663) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412494)

The use of loudspeakers was very common at the end of WWII ("Stop fighting, you will just prolong the suffering of your people", "we won't hurt you if you put down your weapons", and sometimes just very annoying sounds for hours). I guess nobody considered this a weapon back then. What's new about this device is that it can target people selectively. As long as it does not physically stun people for minutes it's not a weapon, but part of the propaganda machinery.

Re:Is it really a weapon? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23412648)

It can temporarily - or permanently - deafen them, depending on the setting. It's a weapon, plain and simple.

But deafened people can still make bombs. You end up with a load of very pissed off crippled but not totally incapacitated people.

The weird asian "sheep mode" mindset might stop a lot of them from taking action, but not all of them.

Re:Is it really a weapon? (1)

nbert (785663) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412788)

It can temporarily - or permanently - deafen them, depending on the setting. It's a weapon, plain and simple.
If that's the case it's a weapon - plain and simple. But I think its impact is rather minor compared to other american technologies already in place. For some reason nobody thinks it's bad that companies like Cisco provide hardware for the so called "Great Firewall". Instead we focus on a dubious sound weapon and the fact that google is abiding local law (like there's any choice you have if you do business in a foreign country). Mind-boggling...

Re:Is it really a weapon? (1)

adisakp (705706) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412568)

I don't really know much about this device, but let's, for the moment, assume it can't actually hurt anyone, just make them uncomfortable / stun them. Is it really a weapon then?

Let's say someone created a device that could cause an infinite amount of pain for as long as they wanted but didn't cause any actual physical harm (in most cases). Would that be considered a weapon?

Heck you don't even need a theoretical device to state your case. Take waterboarding [wikipedia.org] which is merely a method to simulate the feeling of drowning without actually causing physical damage to the subject. Do you consider it torture if the subject isn't "physically" harmed in the long run?

Re:Is it really a weapon? (1)

rubycodez (864176) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412688)

an instrument of torture is a weapon, marks or not. Waterboarding *is* drowning, not a simulation at all, and can cause the same physical damage that being held under water can do, including death.

Mixed feelings on this (4, Insightful)

joggle (594025) | more than 6 years ago | (#23411948)

I don't know if it's such a bad thing to provide China with safe crowd control devices. If China wants some form of crowd control they will use whatever they have, including deadly force (such as back in Tienanmen Square).

Giving them something safe to use is probably a good idea and could save peoples' lives.

I think the counterargument would be something to the effect that the US shouldn't help a government such as China's to maintain control over its people. It's a difficult moral dilemma to be sure. However, China is not Burma and by and large the population is content with their government.

Re:Mixed feelings on this (2, Insightful)

JordanL (886154) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412060)

Alot of Germans were content with the Third Riech... a bit of perspective perhaps.

Re:Mixed feelings on this (1)

iNaya (1049686) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412152)

That wasn't the problem, the Nazi's really stabilised Germany before they went on their conquering spree. The problems lay in the fact that they sure pissed of the English and a lot of people in the countries they occupied, not to mention the Gypsies, Jews, disabled persons, and homosexuals.

Re:Mixed feelings on this (2, Insightful)

JordanL (886154) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412188)

The Chinese sure seem to be doing a good job of pissing off the Japanese, Koreans (South), Taiwanese, Tibetans, and anyone who cares about them lately.

This isn't supposed to be a direct comparison. My point is that perspective is the only thing that seperates these situations.

Re:Mixed feelings on this (5, Insightful)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412186)

However, China is not Burma and by and large the population is content with their government.
Without getting into a big discussion about the philosophy of government, I just want to point out that China has a long cultural history of obedience to authority. My understanding is that the common perception is that there is nothing to be done about government, so the best thing to do is to either bend it to your needs (via bribe, etc) or just accept it as an immoveable constraint.

The reason I bring this up is that lack of protest is not necessarily a sign of contentment with government. And without access to specific kinds of foreign media, there is no way for the Chinese public to become aware that government is, in fact, a mutable thing.

IOW, most Chinese are content with their government because they know nothing different or because they have been indoctrinated with propaganda about their government. By the way, this applies to a lot of people all over the world, including Americans [1].

And here come the kneejerk flamebait mods. Sorry if I've offended some of the super-patriots haunting the halls of Slashdot, but we are all products of what is around us -- and being taught from age 5 that your country is the best is hard to overcome.

Re:Mixed feelings on this (2, Interesting)

Gideon Fubar (833343) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412506)

I applaud you for actually making reasonable sense of the situation. Far too much energy is spent around here on people reinforcing their own beliefs by pointing out the flaws in others'.

If i had the points, I would totally mod you up for your insight.

Re:Mixed feelings on this (3, Funny)

maxume (22995) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412544)

So in China, the government extols the virtues of urinating in your soup while they urinate in your soup, but in the US, the government extols the virtues of urine free soup while urinating in your soup?

Re:Mixed feelings on this (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23412704)

This is good insight into the situation, however, it's not quite accurate. The fact of the matter is that by-and-large there is a significant portion of the population that is NOT happy with the current government - or at least, not happy with it's practices.
Everyday in China there are hundreds of protests about things such as food, water, and working/housing conditions. As the chinese people become richer, they're going to demand more of the government (I would cite sources here, but all the ones I can think of off the top of my head are Time magazine articles of which I can't directly link). Just look at the aftermath of the recent earthquake. Buildings that were not built to building codes pancaked, killing thousands of people. Granted, not many buildings in the US could go through a 7.9 magnitude earthquake and not come out damaged, but it's reasonable to assume they wouldn't pancake completely.
What you're saying is probably accurate in the most part, however, I think it's inaccurate to say that the chinese people are obedient. They probably put up with more than US citizens would at this point, but I think that's slowly changing. Whether there will be a peaceful transition (assuming there will be one) is anyone's guess.

Re:Mixed feelings on this (2, Interesting)

augnober (836111) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412776)

Without getting into a big discussion about the philosophy of government, I just want to point out that China has a long cultural history of obedience to authority. My understanding is that the common perception is that there is nothing to be done about government, so the best thing to do is to either bend it to your needs (via bribe, etc) or just accept it as an immoveable constraint.
That is true. You can sense this in other ways in China too - not just in relation to governance. For example, if someone butts in front of everyone in line, you generally see very little (usually none at all) reaction or discontent from the people behind. If you call out the injustice of the person butting ahead, people look at you like you're crazy and your friend, confused and embarrassed, tries to calm you down. Once you've lived there for a while, these relatively minor transgressions slip your mind because there's no benefit to doing anything about them. No one will look at you like a hero for making a fuss, and people prefer it that you don't. Once you get used to it (if you have a normal disposition that is -- some people are just wired up to be uptight), it doesn't bother you either. You get by just fine. Calling out injustice is primarily about the ethics of helping other people rather than saving yourself. This is something that is difficult to understand until you have lived in circumstances where it is pulled out from under you.

This is from my experience living in China before. After living there for over a year, I could walk around all day amongst throngs of people and have nothing affect my nerves even the slightest tinge. I think it is a related phenomenon. Not to sound too selfish -- but if nothing is bothering you, and nothing is bothering your friends and family, then nothing is wrong.

It still undermines freedom of speech (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23412624)

If you speak bad against the government in china you are either jailed or just dissapear.

If you speak bad against the government in the USA nothing like that happens.

I have only 1 feeling about this, and it's a fucked up one. The Chinese should be allowed to voice their opinions plain and simple. I bet the US military is just dieing to see the results of this too as the Chinese will be their test guinea pigs. Sick Bastards.

Easier for totalitarian govts, but not better (4, Insightful)

soren100 (63191) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412644)

I don't know if it's such a bad thing to provide China with safe crowd control devices
It depends on what you all "safe". These weapons sound like the dream of a totalitarian state. For example, all they have to do for a truly vicious weapon is to turn up the volume on the sound weapon, instantly rendering the victims totally and permanently deaf. Then you have no gory pictures to upset anyone with, and you render the victims pretty much incapable of organizing and protesting for quite a while.

The "pain ray" the US has developed is pretty well suited for a totalitarian government as well. It leaves no marks, so you could also just round up anyone at a protest and subject them to microwave beams that activate the pain nerves in the skin just enough to be able to cause agonizing pain without leaving any marks . You have the double bonus of driving your victims insane from the pain without any ugly wounds to photograph and get people upset.

However, China is not Burma and by and large the population is content with their government.
China has a very effective ability to stifle dissent -- Tiananmen square is an excellent example. How are you going to know if anyone is unhappy if everyone is too scared to say anything? When you surf the internet in China they love to have little animated policemen popping up on your screen to remind you that you are being watched. People are scared enough there already of doing the wrong thing -- imagine what would happen if deaf people started showing up as not-so-subtle reminders of what happens to people who complain?

Imagine the scenario of one man in a truck with a sound weapon shutting down a whole protest without any ugly pictures to shock anyone into action, with no effective recourse by the protesters. This kind of thing is the way that your typical 'nightmare dystopian science fiction movie' would become reality. Once the people are unable to complain or protest, how nice would the government have to be?

Why bother? (2, Interesting)

urcreepyneighbor (1171755) | more than 6 years ago | (#23411960)

Unless the PRC plans on using this sometime in the immediate future, why wouldn't they simply develop this technology locally?

AFAIK, the principles behind the technology aren't all that complicated.

Re:Why bother? (1)

l2718 (514756) | more than 6 years ago | (#23411994)

Why bother? Because it's cheaper to buy an existing product than to reinvent the wheel. Later they may decide to reverse-engineer, but even then it's cheaper to buy the blueprints.

Re:Why bother? (2, Interesting)

urcreepyneighbor (1171755) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412044)

Because it's cheaper to buy an existing product than to reinvent the wheel.
Obviously. However, as I said, there appears to be a time factor here that isn't being publicly stated. I'm sure the Chinese government could easily produce their very own "sound weapon" if they so desired.

Later they may decide to reverse-engineer,
Later? Ha! I'm sure they're ordering enough to deploy and RE.

I would be absolutely shocked if the PRC doesn't already have existing teams whose sole function is to RE stuff.

but even then it's cheaper to buy the blueprints.
Why buy when you can steal? ;)

Re:Why bother? (1)

kpainter (901021) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412138)

why wouldn't they simply develop this technology locally?
Yeah, the homies in my neighborhood play gangsta rap and Hispanic polka music in their cars with million watt sub-woofers. In addition to rattling loose fillings, this music induces vomiting, especially when played at such insane levels. What is even more amazing is the lowering effect on property values everywhere within an audible radius!
This effective technology is already mostly produced in China so they really wouldn't have to import anything.

Re:Why bother? (1)

urcreepyneighbor (1171755) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412200)

Yeah, the homies in my neighborhood play gangsta rap and Hispanic polka music in their cars with million watt sub-woofers.
That version? Yeah, it comes with hoochies.

Hoochies cost extra!

Re:Why bother? (1)

iNaya (1049686) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412158)

Wouldn't you rather they spent money developing cool things that haven't already been developed? Why invent the wheel twice, when you can copy it off someone else and invent the carriage?

Re:Why bother? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23412420)

But... but.. patents? :(

Might as well make a buck... (1, Insightful)

couchslug (175151) | more than 6 years ago | (#23411964)

Economic relations between the US and the ChiComs are arguably more important than supporting those opposed to the Chinese government.

We don't need more adversaries than we have already, and the cultural war with Islam is a greater concern than how the Middle Kingdom deals with its subjects. We have no duty to sacrifice for others, and our own prosperity should be our first consideration. I say sell Beijing whatever it wants, and quit caring about how Asians handle internal affairs.

Re:Might as well make a buck... (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23412080)

I say sell Beijing whatever it wants, and quit caring about how Asians handle internal affairs.
Of course, selling weapons to oppressive regimes has never come back to bite the US, oh wait...

Re:Might as well make a buck... (3, Insightful)

UncleTogie (1004853) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412156)

I say sell Beijing whatever it wants, and quit caring about how Asians handle internal affairs.

Sure, because their work with laser technologies [afpc.org] now have given the world weapons to use against us.

Considering their arms exporting practices, [stoparmstosudan.org] I'd rather not give them more money, thanks.

We have no duty to sacrifice for others, and our own prosperity should be our first consideration.

If humans are to survive as a species, we'd better start thinking of others...

Every dead American is one more Democratic vote (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23412634)

Every dead American is one more Democratic vote
So, what do you care if China has weapons to use against us?

After all it is all the fault of The Jew-Puppet Bu$Hitler Chimpy McHaliburtin, and th eother ReThuglicans.

The sooner America is destroyed, the sooner the world will be a better place.

That is change you can believe in.

Re:Might as well make a buck... (1)

baggins2001 (697667) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412794)

I don't understand your moderation. I have been noticing a number of moderations that are off and getting stuck with Flamebait, troll...
I guess the Microsoft and Republican crowd are here.

Re:Might as well make a buck... (1)

zenmaster666 (1285342) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412176)

We have no duty to sacrifice for others, and our own prosperity should be our first consideration. I say sell Beijing whatever it wants, and quit caring about how Asians handle internal affairs.
Thats a great attitude towards humanity and what happened last time people thought that way.. I will give you a minute to think..
We had two world wars!!!
And no one is asking for your to sacrifice but at least don't sell weapons to people whom you know are committing crimes against humanity.
And believe me I am a strong advocate of capitalist economy; that doesn't mean its OK to sell weapons and empower countries like china to suppress their people.
When they are done with their country, GUESS WHO'S NEXT

Re:Might as well make a buck... (1)

liquidf (1146307) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412722)

i think i am going to disagree with only your last statement. militarily speaking, i believe china (the gov't) is only interested in china, and what they believe is theirs, or at least has been at one point in history. look at fujian. they regularly hold military excercises in their port cities and have increased their missile depots quite a bit in the past few years, and it just so happens that it is the closest province to taiwan. convenient, huh? now tibet. rumor has it that the chinese believe a part of NE india was once theirs. gaining control over tibet makes that passage all the much easier. i don't think they will direct an attack against us, but they will have no problem with fighting us if we get in between them and what they believe is rightfully theirs.

Re:Might as well make a buck... (1)

Phybersyk0 (513618) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412762)

Fuck you for fear mongering. You fucking fearmongering fuckers.

There is no way in hell the Chinese would authorize the use of this sort device when the entire world has come to China's doorstep for the games.

While I'll be the first to admit, China needs fucking improvement, you've got to look beyond OUR OWN propaganda that we get here in the West.

From China's perspective, Seperatist Tibetans cannot be allowed to succeed. China is in fact, made up of many nations and peoples. There are numerous ethnic groups within it's borders.

Would we in America be happy if the indigenous peoples of Alaska, Hawaii -- the states we got in the Mexican Cession -- or matter of fact, the ENTIRE United States back to the Native Americans whos land we took buy unfair trade or worse yet -- murder? Fuck that. You lost, we won, you got what losers get. We got what winners get.

Communist China's early history is a bloody one. Yes, during the Cultural Revolution, people were, well -- exterminated. However, The Chinese are attempting to make amends with the ethnic (non-Han) Chinese and become truly powerful in it's multiculturalism. So much so, that there's a rising sort-of descrimination not unlike our own Affirmative Action.

Ultimately, Modern China is trying to sell the idea that the Government IS the people. It's hard for Americans especially to reconcile, because we like to have shit both ways. You have less to answer for when that condition exists. "Dubya ain't MY president". It's a claim made by pussies too chickenshit to do anything to REALLY CHANGE.

Re:Might as well make a buck... (3, Informative)

TheDugong (701481) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412774)

"We had two world wars!!!"

NOTE: I do not support the selling of weapons to anyone and I am making no moral judgments with the below.

World War 1 - The upper-class of Europe gets a bit excitable and millions of people die, although in the long run (after WW2) it effectively removed the European upper-class from power which is a good thing. It had nothing to do with economics whatsoever.

World War 2 - Effectively two wars:

1) Europe - an extension of WW1. Basically, caused by different power bases/ideals vying for the power vacuum left by the removal of the upper-class in Germany, Russia, Austria and a weakening of it elsewhere.

2) The Pacific - Japan, the only non-white skinned empire and great power had limited resources, i.e. steel and oil. The other (white skinned) powers (British Empire, US, Dutch & French) refused to supply the Japanese. This left them two options:

i) Give up on their imperial and economic ambitions.

or

ii) Take it from someone

Their hands were forced into the second option and the entire reason for Pearl Harbor was to knock out the US long enough so they could grab the oil in the Netherlands East Indies (now Indonesia) and, hopefully, become strong enough before the US had a chance to re-arm. If the US had not had a colony^M^M^M^M^M^Mterritory called The Philippines, Pearl Harbor would not have been necessary at all.

The entire Pacific war was forced by the other powers refusing to sell the means to make an economy work (and make war), oil & steel, to the Japanese.

I am not justifying any of the actions of any of the governments at the time, just stating happened.

Re:Might as well make a buck... (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412210)

That attitude, on the global scale, always comes back to bite you in the ass. Always.

Re:Might as well make a buck... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23412496)

Funny, you can make the exact same argument about interventionist politics - see the Iraq war. Maybe international relations are so complex that there isn't one right answer that is *always* applicable to every circumstance. Just a thought.

Re:Might as well make a buck... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23412278)

We have no duty to sacrifice for others, and our own prosperity should be our first consideration.
That's never really been a problem for us..

Non-lethal != Harmless (1)

flaming error (1041742) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412416)

I say sell Beijing whatever it wants
Indeed. We're just amoral suppliers meeting a demand [wordpress.com] .

Directed at US (3, Funny)

hansamurai (907719) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412038)

Did anyone else read the headline as China is buying Sound Weapons directed at the US? I felt bad for people living in California for a moment.

Re:Directed at US (1)

Sta7ic (819090) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412072)

Why? California wouldn't notice anything over the rock concerts and the bar bands.

Re:Directed at US (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23412174)

What was that old communist saying? Something along the lines of "Capitalists will sell you the rope to hang them with?"

Don't worry, this weapon will be like every other fucking weapon we've ever sold to bin laden, saddam hussein, half of the rest of the middle east, and just about every other country we've had to fight in or against since the end of the Vietnam war. Our troops will be staring down its barrel/loudspeaker/whatever, and hopefully they've remembered to bring ear muffs.

Re:Directed at US (5, Funny)

redcaboodle (622288) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412286)

Even worse: I read China was buying Direct Sound weapons.

I know DirectX is a pita, but to use it as a wepon is probably over the top.

New from Ronco! (3, Insightful)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412164)

If it's not a weapon, so that these laws do not apply... then I want one!

But really, this Chinese thing looks like a mess waiting to happen. More reason to hate / distrust the United States government... for both Americans and Chinese.

Re:New from Ronco! (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412336)

Yes, if only the people could get the government off their back, America would be a paradise.

Re:New from Ronco! (1)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412490)

Distrust the US government for letting a business do something there's no law against. Right.

Kate Bush knew about this years ago (1, Interesting)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412274)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9DVvrcFi4M0 [youtube.com]

We were working secretly for the military
Our experiment in sound was nearly ready to begin
We only know in theory what we are doing
Music made for pleasure
Music made to thrill
It was music we were making here until
But they told us all they wanted was a sound
That could kill someone
From a distance
So we go ahead
And the meters are over in the red
It's a mistake in the making
From the painful cries of mothers to the terrifying scream
We recorded it and I put it into our machine
But they told us all they wanted was a sound
That could kill someone
It could feel like falling in love
It could feel so bad
But it could feel so good
It could sing you to sleep
But that dream is your enemy
We won't be there to be blamed
We won't be there to snitch
I just pray that someone there can hit the switch
But they told us all they wanted was a sound
That could kill someone
From a distance
And we go ahead
And the meters are over in the red
It's a mistake we have made
And the public are warned to stay off
And the public are warned to stay off

Protesting the Olympics in China (0, Flamebait)

joocemann (1273720) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412340)

Is like protesting farts on the moon. It makes no sense. It is the Olympics, not 'China'. It just happens to be in China. Silly protesters need to back off and grow some pubes.

Re:Protesting the Olympics in China (1)

Mr. Mikey (17567) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412580)

What "makes no sense" is your post.

People protest to effect change. One way of effecting change is to draw attention to a problem.

In this case, people are protesting China's actions by protesting at the Olympics.

I'd say those protesters have pubes a' plenty... assuming you mean "guts" when you say "pubes."

Re:Protesting the Olympics in China (1)

hyades1 (1149581) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412764)

Your vocabulary is mean and impoverished, but more than adequate to express your thoughts.

likey it will be seen being used at the Olympics.. (1)

Joe The Dragon (967727) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412458)

likey it will be seen being used at the Olympics on free Tibet protesters.

Been doin' this already (3, Funny)

Ihmhi (1206036) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412554)

We've been selling them directed sound weapons ever since we've been exporting Britney Spears CDs...

Insert... (1)

dos4who (564592) | more than 6 years ago | (#23412744)

... obligatory "Brown Note" reference here.... or is they only selling them the "Yellow Note" model?

The new "Shit happens" list (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23412790)

Christianity : Shit happens.

Islam : If shit happens it's the will of Allah.

Judaism : Why does shit always happen to us?

Agnosticism : I don't know whether shit's happening or not.

Tibetan Buddhism & Falun Gong : Shit's happening to our ears!
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