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Biological and Chemical Weapons

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Chemical weapons are synthesized chemical substances adapted for ... sleep-inducing fumes, blinding quicklime, Arsenic, Curare, batrachotoxin from frogs, etc... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Biological and Chemical Weapons


1
Biological and Chemical Weapons
Ethics in Technology
  • By
  • Chee Seng Goh
  • Darrell Lee Niemann
  • Xuan Noël
  • May 20th, 2002

X
2
Definitions
  • Chemical weapons are synthesized chemical
    substances adapted for military use and are
    intended to cause diseases or death in human,
    animal or plant life
  • Biological or germ weapons are natural or
    cultivated living organisms that are adapted to
    incapacitate, kill, or otherwise impede an
    adversary
  • Source The Monterey Institute of International
    Studies

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3
History of Chemical/Biological Development
  • Ancient times
  • As far back as 4th BC, enemies wells and rivers
    were polluted, sulfur based gases were blown into
    besieged cities.
  • Middle Ages and Renaissance
  • Use of sleep-inducing fumes, blinding quicklime,
    Arsenic, Curare, batrachotoxin from frogs, etc
  • Plague or smallpox infected corpses were known to
    be catapulted into besieged cities
  • 18th and 19th century
  • Manufacture of more sophisticated devices in the
    18th century based on arsenic, lead, verdigris,
    euphoria, etc (Cited by the German military
    author Fleming in 1726).
  • Smallpox and plague were used as biological
    weapons during the end of 18th century
  • Not much was done during the 19th century, most
    of interest in ballistics and cannons

X
4
History of Chemical/Biological Development
  • World wars and in between
  • 1915-1916 Chlorine and phosgene gas, dispersed by
    the wind killed 6000 soldiers and injured 2000.
  • 1917 10,000 tons of Mustard gas were manufactured
  • 1920 Mustard gas used during Russian revolution
  • 1930s Germany manufactures Sarin
  • Very little chemical weapons used during WWII
    because of a certain equilibrium on both sides.
  • Recently
  • US used defoliants, and yellow rain
    (trichothecene mycotoxins) in Vietnam.
  • During the Afghan war (1979-1983) Soviet Union
    used mustard gas and other very hard to detect
    chemical weapons.
  • End of 1970s the Iraqi started to produce
    mustard gas, cyanide and tabun which they used
    during the Iran-Iraq conflict.
  • 1990 and the Gulf War, Iraq ranked 3rd on the
    chemical and Biological weapon race with 50,000
    shells and bombs containing mustard gas, sarin
    and cyclohexyl sarin.

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5
History of Chemical/Biological Development
  • Latest incidents
  • 1992 in Virginia, a man sprayed his roommate with
    what he claimed to be Anthrax, and caused 20
    people to be hospitalized.
  • 1994 in Tokyo, Aum Shinrikyo member attempted to
    release Anthrax from the top of a building.
  • 1995 also from the cult Aum Shinrikyo, 5 men
    released Sarin (nerve agent) in the Tokyo subway,
    resulting in 12 dead and 54 injured.
  • 2001 23 cases of Anthrax infections in the US

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6
Different Agents
  • How does it work?
  • Blister agents Cause blisters on skin and damage
    the respiratory tract, mucous membrane and
    eyes
  • Nerve agents Lethal substances that disable
    enzymes responsible for the transmission of
    nerve impulses
  • Choking agents Substance that damage respiratory
    tract, causing extensive fluid build-up in the
    lungs.
  • Blood agents Interfere with the absorption of
    oxygen into the bloodstream
  • Incapacitating agents Rapidly produce temporary
    disabling effects
  • Source CIA Chemical and Biological Threat

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7
What is Anthrax?
  • Anthrax is an acute infectious disease caused
    by the spore-forming bacterium Bacillus
    anthracis.
  • A tough protective coat allows the bacteria to
    survive for decades as spores.

Anthrax under amicroscope Courtesy Center for
Disease Control  
C
8
Anthrax Danger
  • highly lethal
  • one of the easiest biological agents to
    manufacture
  • relatively easy to develop as a weapon
  • easily spread in the air over a large area
  • easily stored and dangerous for a long period

C
9
Anthrax
  • Anthrax infection can occur in three forms
  • cutaneous (skin),
  • inhalation
  • gastrointestinal

C
10
Cutaneous (skin) Anthrax
  • - direct skin contact with spores in nature,
    contact with infected animals or animal products
    (occupational exposure)

C
11
Inhalation and Gatrointestinal Anthrax
  • - inhalation of
  • aerosolized spores
  • - consumption of
  • undercooked or raw meat products or dairy
    products from infected animals.

C
12
Anthrax Threat (I)effective as a biological
weapon
  • almost always DEADLY if not treated early.
  • spores can be produced in large quantities using
    basic knowledge of biology.
  • spores can be stored for decades without losing
    potency.
  • spores can be easily spread in the air by
    missiles, rockets, artillery, aerial bombs
    sprayers.

C
13
Anthrax Threat (II)no indication of exposure
  • There is no cloud or color.
  • There is no smell.
  • There is no taste.
  • There is no indication of an attack when
    dispersed by aerosol spray.

C
14
Anthrax Threat (III)potential adversaries known
  • At least 7 of our potential adversaries have
    worked to develop an offensive biological warfare
    capability using anthrax.
  • Iraq has admitted to producing and weaponizing
    anthrax.
  • The Former Soviet Union produced hundreds of tons
    of weapons-grade anthrax spores.

C
15
Making Anthrax
In its natural state, anthrax has a low rate of
infection among people, Experts say it takes a
sophisticated lab and advanced skills to turn the
natural anthrax spores into an aerosol that can
cause death from lung infection.
When released into the air, a high concentration
of spores can be drawn deep into the lungs. The
spores return to their bacterial state and a
rapidly developing anthrax infection releases
deadly toxins.
C
16
Anthrax Challenges
  • 1. CDC is expanding epidemiologic and diagnostic
    laboratory capacities and technologies.
  • -includes local and state health department
    training.
  • 2. Filling up gaps in our understanding of the
    immunology of anthrax and protection against
    anthrax via vaccination.
  • 3. post-exposure prophylaxis against anthrax
    requires further investigation.

C
17
Ethical Question
  • Is it justifiable to use Chemical and Biological
    weapons?

C
18
Pros and Cons of chem/bio weapons
  • Pros
  • Very fast acting
  • Relatively cheap compared to other weapons
  • Keep infrastructure intact
  • Cons
  • Hard to control the chemical/viral or bacterial
    expansion
  • Mass destruction/intimidation
  • Inhumane way of dying
  • May affect future generation
  • May affect the environment

D
19
Professional
  • Defense Industry provides research funding
  • Regulation of usage

D
20
Legal Issues
  • As many as 21 nations, including several the U.S.
    State Department have developed lethal biological
    agents as weapons of war.
  • June 2001 51 states are known to possess Some
    chemical or biological weapon
  • Most recent Treaties
  • 143 countries signed the Biological Weapons
    convention in 1972 banning the production,
    possession and deployment of such agents
  • The Chemical and Biological Weapons
    Nonproliferation Project. 1993
  • Defense Against Weapons of Mass Destruction Act
    1997
  • Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention 1999

D
21
Stakeholders
  • Government
  • Perpetrators
  • Victims
  • Scientists who develop bio-chem. Technology
  • The environment
  • Pretty much everybody and everything

D
22
Possible Action
  • Action 1 Governments allow the use of chemical
    and biological weapons
  • Action 2 Governments ban the use and development
    of any form of chemical or biological
    weapons
  • Action 3 Some limited research and development
    is allowed on certain substance Closely
    monitored
  • Action 4 Peace Love

D
23
Action 1
  • Action 1 Governments allow the use of chemical
    and biological weapons
  • Consequences Chemical and biological weapons
    would be used everywhere. Posing a threat to
  • both population and environment
  • Fairness Not fair to the governments who do not
    participate in the bio/chem warfare, and to the
    population (civilian) as a whole.
  • Virtue Least virtuous

D
24
Action 2
  • Action 2 Governments ban the use and development
    of any form of chemical or biological
    weapons
  • Consequences Hard to implement the total ban on
    such weaponry. Terrorist organization will still
    be able to acquire those weapons.
  • Fairness If implementable, it would be fair to
    everyone however, we dont live in an ideal
    world.
  • Virtue Virtous

D
25
Action 3
  • Action 3 Some limited research and development
    is allowed on certain substance Closely
    monitored
  • Consequences Non lethal chem/bio might be
    developed such as riot agent. Most humane to
    implement.
  • Fairness Every country has the right to decide
    on their way to use the technology
  • Virtue Most realistically virtuous

D
26
Action 4 The Ideal World
  • Action 4 Peace Love. Conflicted countries
    put their weapons and sit around a table to
    diplomatically solve their differences
  • Consequences In an ideal world, this might work.
  • The world will be a better place
  • Fairness Ideally fair
  • Virtue Most ideally virtuous

D
27
Ethical Analysis
  • According to Utilitarianism, the greatest balance
    occurs when there is respect for all parties.
  • Individuals have the right to life
  • Fairness needs to exist for all stakeholders
  • According to The Categorical Imperative, we
    shouldnt use on others what is undesirable used
    on us.

X
28
Our Conclusion
  • Action 3 Some limited research and development
    is allowed on certain substance Closely
    monitored
  • Consequences Non lethal chem/bio might be
    developed such as riot agent. Most humane to
    implement.
  • Fairness Every country has the right to decide
    on their way to use the technology
  • Virtue Most realistically virtuous

X
29
Resources
  • Anthrax breakouthttp//www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/fro
    ntline/shows/plague/sverdlovsk/
  • Bioterrorhttp//www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/bioterror/a
    gents.html
  • Different Chemical and Biological agents
  • http//www.stimson.org/cbw
  • http//www.emedecine.com/emerg/topic853.htm
  • http//www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/pla
    gue/sverdlovsk/
  • Germs warfare
  • http//news.bbc.co.uk/hi/english/world/americas/n
    ewsid_146000/1456414.stm
  • http//cns.miis.edu/research/cbw/
  • Chronology of Aum Shinrikyos Cemical and
    Biological War
  • http//www.cesnur.org/testi/aum1.htm
  • http//cns.miis.edu/pubs/reports/pdfs/aum_chrn.pd
    f
  • History of Chem and Bio warfare
  • http//news.bbc.co.uk/hi/english/world/americas/n
    ewsid_1456000/1456414.stm
  • http//www.emedicine.com/emerg/topic853.htm
  • http//www.ipsn.fr/saci/eng/CHIMIE/info/INFO_IMG/
    33800.htm

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