Using The Science Of Life As A

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Weapon Essay, Research Paper

I Introduction

1 ) Definition of Biological Warfare

2 ) Talk Points

II Biological Weapons

1 ) Different Types Used

2 ) Applications

III History of Biological Warfare

1 ) How It Has Been Used in Past Wars

2 ) How We Can Expect It to Be Used in the Future

Fours Are We At Risk of Being Attacked With Biological Weapons?

1 ) Defending Ourselves Against Biological Weapons

V Conclusion

Nuclear, Biological and Chemical ( NBC ) warfare is one of the most awful signifiers of onslaught on the battleground. In the last century, we learned a great trade about how life works, how it is organized. We have used that engineering to salvage many lives by bring arounding diseases and immunizing against viruses. But it seems that whenever we have a discovery in scientific discipline, there is an ever-present danger of a signifier of arm ensuing from the find. Biological Warfare is defined as bacteriums, viruses, Fungis or rickettsia, which are used in wartime to do disease or decease in people ( Hay, 1984 ) .

It seems like a contradiction. Doctors work hard to happen remedies and inoculations for the assorted diseases and viruses that plague our population. On the other side of the coin, nevertheless, there are people that would utilize disease as a arm. They non merely utilize the kind of disease that nature provides, but seek to make more effectual and hideous manmade diseases. Biological arms, as opposed to chemical arms, are effectual with a comparatively little measure of agent. However, most of these agents have a limited shelf life, as their activity is continually worsening ( Hay, 1984 ) .

Most biological agents are dispersed in aerosol signifier. They can be sprayed from a little cylinder with tight air, spread by guided missiles, dispersed as a pulverization from aircraft, or used in a bunch of bombs. The danger is the possible for these biological agents, if successful in infecting a population, can be dispersed rapidly. The U.S. Navy tested the effectivity of Biological arms on a city in November of 1950. They released harmless bacteriums off the California seashore, sufficient to pollute 117 square stat mis of the San Francisco Bay country. Scientists reported that about all of the 800,000 dwellers of the metropolis had inhaled the bacterium ( Hay, 1984 ) .

To do an epidemic, an enemy would choose a extremely contagious virus or bacteriums. They would make up one’s mind whether to utilize an highly deadly agent or one that would temporarily disable a population or ground forces to weaken defences. Most biological arms are influenza viruses or pneumonic pestilence B. These run into the demand of being extremely contagious by human contact. As an illustration, an estimated 20 million people died in the great influenza pandemic of 1918 and 1919 & # 8211 ; merely three per centum of those infected. Surprisingly, so, this great loss of life really represents a low mortality rate ( Solomon, 1999 ) .

For disabling the mark, undulant fever is preferred. This is a chronic infection caused by the Brucella species of bacteriums. A individual can be infected by tegument contact, by eating or imbibing infected stuff, or by inhaling the being. This is besides an agent that can be produced easy in fermenters. Symptoms vary, but common are a terrible iciness, a repeating febrility, sudating, concern, loss of appetency, utmost exhaustion, hurting articulations and depression. The symptoms last upwards of four hebdomads, but backslidings can go on for old ages ( Hay, 1984 ) .

The most good known signifier of undulant fever is anthrax. Attackers favor this chiefly because it is deadly and comparatively easy to fabricate. Anthrax is caused by the bacteria B anthracis, and is spread by skin contact, contact with septic animate beings, or by inhaling or consuming the agent. The mortality rate is highest when infected by inspiration, at eighty per cent of untreated instances. The danger of splenic fever is long term every bit good. Forty old ages after being tested on Gruinard, the island is still contaminated with the bacteria ( Solomon, 1999 ) .

Although the danger of biological arms increases as engineering progresses, it is non a new menace. One of the earliest reported utilizations was in the 6th century B.C. , when the Assyrians poisoned their enemy & # 8217 ; s Wellss with a fungus disease called rye ergot. The commanding officer of British forces in America, Jeffrey Amherst, used biological warfare on the Ottawa Indians. He sent two waggons of covers from the smallpox infirmary to the folk as a & # 8220 ; peace-offering. & # 8221 ; And in the fifteenth century, Pizarro reportedly presented the South American indigens with variola-contaminated degree Celsiuss

lothing ( Solomon, 1999 ) .

The usage of biological warfare started to distribute, nevertheless, in the first World War. Both sides of the war used these agents for tactical intents. On the battleground itself, nevertheless, there is an built-in danger in utilizing these arms & # 8211 ; that of infecting one & # 8217 ; s ain military personnels. Besides, there is the utmost hazard that the disease may acquire out of control, spread by an unforeseen displacement in air current like a wildfire. For this ground, the application of pick for this arm is long scope and terrorist onslaught. During the cold war, many states began experimenting and carrying biological and chemical arms. The low cost and easiness of fabrication is the primary ground an attacker might concentrate on this signifier of arm. Possibly more so because of their shear effectivity ( Horowitz, 1997 ) .

There is a argument today as to whether we are at hazard of an onslaught by biological arms. We know that knave states, such as Iraq and Iran, have tried to carry these arms, in malice of the United Nations attempts to discontinue that activity. Officials in the Clinton disposal have stated that there is no inquiry & # 8211 ; finally, we will be hurt by these agents. One of our salvaging graces is that, sometimes, the agents do non move as planned. A Nipponese cult launched at least nine germ onslaughts in Tokyo in the early 1990 & # 8217 ; s, trying to kill 1000000s. The work stoppages, nevertheless, produced no known hurts or deceases ( Solomon, 1999 ) .

The largest menace comes, non from aggressive states, but from terrorists. A individual can move far more radically than a authorities. Ifsuch a psychopath got clasp of a biological agent, they could take our an full city. They could even distribute the virus or bacterium around an full state. Imagine if such a terrorist found his manner to San Francisco International Airport. He makes his manner to the domestic flights terminus, an aerosol pump easy hidden in his briefcase, he releases a botulinus toxin. He leaves rapidly to avoid exposing himself. Now he has transmitted one of the most deathly known substances across the state. It may look like a far-fetched scenario, but the fact is that at least 16 states and an unknown figure of terrorist groups can now bring forth biological arms ( Osterholm, 1997 ) .

Aside from battling biological arms, one of the major undertakings is being able to rapidly place one in the country. The U.S. military utilizations spots that can be attached to a soldier & # 8217 ; s arm or on machinery. These detect merely four of the most normally used biological and chemical arms. The soldier has merely a few seconds to respond by wearing his protective mask & # 8211 ; followed by a decontamination process and ascent to higher degrees of Mission Oriented Protective Posture ( MOPP ) cogwheel, such as an excess bed of heavy vesture and chemical over boots.

Presently, the Johns Hopkins University, in cooperation with the Centers for Disease Control, are working on methods for placing unsafe beings. However, these trials require drawn-out processs, adept technicians, and wet-laboratory environments & # 8211 ; every bit good as a demand for non-renewable reagents. What does this mean? A batch of money. The end is to observe aerosols that contain unsafe beings in less than five proceedingss. Thankfully, our state has the scientific and technology endowment to minimise the menace of biological terrorist act. The devices will undergo proving at the U.S. Army Dugway Proving Grounds. Successful consequences will take to fabrication of the instruments for military every bit good as civilian bureaus ( Abelson, 1999 ) .

NBC warfare is the ultimate usage of scientific discipline for devastation. Not merely do we hold the ability to destruct every life being on the planet, we have assorted ways of transporting out the undertaking. The inquiry is & # 8211 ; can mankind last it & # 8217 ; s ain engineering? This depends on the good will of those who possess the destructive engineering. As stated antecedently, it takes merely one psychopath with the right engineering to pass over out an full continent. Hopefully, the individuals who poses the power to destruct the universe, will recognize that everyone is a also-ran in an NBC war & # 8211 ; and that long term peace will intend the chase of engineering to better world.


Abelson, Philip. & # 8220 ; Biological Warfare. & # 8221 ; Science. Vol. 286 p. 1677. 26 Nov 1999.

Hay, A. ; Murphy, S. ; Rose, S. No Fire No Thunder. New York, 1984. Monthly Review Press.

Horowitz, Leonard. Emerging Viruss: Aidss and Ebola. Rockport, 1997. Tetrahedron, Inc.

Osterholm, Michael. & # 8220 ; The Silent Killers. & # 8221 ; Newsweek. Vol. 130 p. 32. 17 Nov. 1997.

Solomon, Brian. Chemical and Biological Warfare. New York, 1999. The H.W. Wilson Company.


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