CHART 5-1 Use of Neuropsychological Agents as Incapacitants


Triggers and Observables

Aerosols of opioids serve as excellent incapacitants; reversal agents and premedications can be administered to protect soldiers. Russia deployed this technology in the Moscow Dubrovka Theater in 2002. The agents were probably fentanyl derivatives and may have included inhalation anesthetics (Wax et al., 2003).

Future military deployments and/or training by other countries should be observed. In addition, medicinal chemical developments of other countries should be observed for military applications of medical pharmacology, with particular attention to more potent fentanyl derivatives and inhalation anesthetics. Attention should also be given to technologies that would allow aerosol release in building ventilation systems.




Level 3


This technology is asymmetrical in that the U.S. military is not believed to have it, whereas Russia is known to have it and to have deployed it. The consequence of releasing material would be nonlethal incapacitation of U.S. operators or assets. A small number of enemy operators could rapidly incapacitate a larger number of U.S. forces without engaging in combat. Once incapacitated, the blue forces could be killed or captured by the red forces that had been pretreated with antidote.

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