More on white phosphorus used in Iraq
There is more on this story of the use of white phosphorus in the attack on Falluja here, includingan admission of use and its potential definition as a chemical weapon if used against civilians. Here's a bit of the Guardian report:
US forces yesterday made their clearest admission yet that white phosphorus was used as a weapon against insurgents in Iraq. A Pentagon spokesman told the BBC last night that it had been used as "an incendiary weapon" during the assault last year on Falluja in 2004.
Lieutenant Colonel Barry Venable said the substance, which can be used to lay smokescreens but burns down to the bone in contact with skin, was not covered by international conventions on chemical weapons.
But Paul Rodgers of the University of Bradford's Department of Peace Studies said the substance would probably fall into the category of chemical weapons if used directly against people.
The Pentagon spokesman's comments also appeared to contradict the US ambassador to London, Robert Tuttle, who denied in a letter to the Independent that white phosphorus was deployed as a weapon. Mr Tuttle said: "US forces participating in Operation Iraqi Freedom continue to use appropriate lawful conventional weapons against legitimate targets. US forces do not use napalm or white phosphorus as weapons."