Blind in the Kwa
I have had a problem with recurrent corneal erosions for about 12 years. Even looking at a light in a dark room can cause a lesion that blinds me, in usually my right eye, for two or three days. The worst occurrence happened about four years ago and left me almost completely blind in both eyes for two weeks. It is good that the cornea mostly heals, if not too severely damaged. Fortunately, I seem to be getting over the problem and have not had an occurrence in about a year. (It used to happen several times a month.) This is a fairly common problem in computer users older than fifty. I can only imagine what would happen if this weapon were used on me. God, I love the Kwa! It's like living in one of those science fiction novels I used to read as a kid. Harlan Ellison comes to mind. Didn't he write some stories about future police states?
From Janes Defense:
US Air Force unveils hand-held laser gun
By Michael Sirak JDW Staff Reporter
The US Air Force has unveiled its first hand-held laser weapon that gives security forces a non-lethal option for controlling crowds and protecting areas like checkpoints, according to service officials.
While only in prototype form and years away from fielding, the weapon, known as the Personnel Halting and Stimulation Response (PHaSR) system, holds great promise, they said.
The PHaSR is about the same size and weight of a fully loaded M60 machine gun - around 9 kg - but shoots a low-power beam of laser light instead of bullets. The light it generates is capable of temporarily impairing an individual's vision, much like the disorienting glare one sees when looking into the sun, said the officials.
Upon completion of testing, one prototype will be handed over to the Department of Defense's Joint Non-Lethal Weapons Directorate (JNLWD) and the second to the National Institute of Justice (NIJ): the law enforcement arm of the US Department of Justice. Both organisations support the programme, with the latter interested in its civil applications.
Hunter S. Thompson, "Big dark, coming soon"