I bet Mr. Trower has a delightful accent

COSH: Questioning the latest “Cold War weapons expert” on the Wi-Fi in schools issue

Cold War weapons expert warns Wi-Fi could cause birth defects” cries the National Post, heralding Barrie Trower’s arrival unto the good microwave-fearing people of Simcoe County. Who is Barrie Trower, you ask?

Barrie Trower, who specialized in microwave “stealth” warfare during the Cold War, was to lecture at the University of Toronto on Tuesday night…

“When I realized these same frequencies and powers [as weapons during the Cold War] were being used as Wi-Fi in schools, I decided to come out of retirement and travel around the world free of charge and explain exactly what the problem is going to be in the future,” Mr. Trower told Postmedia News in an interview on Tuesday.

…“What you are doing in schools is transmitting at low levels,” said Mr. Trower, who teaches at Britain’s Dartmoor College and holds a degree in physics.

You will notice what’s very specifically not been said here, which is that Mr. Trower teaches physics at a university. Lest anyone should carelessly arrive at this impression, it ought to be said that what the Post calls “Dartmoor College” is South Dartmoor Community College, a state comprehensive school for children aged 11-18. They are doubtless lucky to have a “weapons expert” like Mr. Trower on staff (assuming he is on staff), although it is damned hard to be a military expert in anything for any length of time without inadvertently getting your name on any patents or peer-reviewed papers to speak of. Trower has said he worked for what he called the “Government Microwave Warfare Establishment”; it’s possible the Post judged this a strong claim after Googling “Government Microwave Warfare Establishment“, or just “Microwave Warfare Establishment“, and finding links to loads of pages related to Barrie Trower and not much else. Excellent work.

[UPDATE, 1:15 a.m. Eastern: the Post‘s original story has vanished from the Web, so you’ll have to visit the Vancouver Sun‘s site to read it.]

Looking for more?

Get the Best of Maclean's sent straight to your inbox. Sign up for news, commentary and analysis.
  • By signing up, you agree to our terms of use and privacy policy. You may unsubscribe at any time.