• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

The Potential of Biological Weapons-Agents of Mass Destruction or Simply of Fear?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Biology Coursework The Potential of Biological Weapons-Agents of Mass Destruction or Simply of Fear? The idea of killing enemies with germs isn't new. In 1346, the Tartars used crude catapults to launch plague-infested corpses into the Crimean city of Kaffa, in southwest Ukraine. (8) Biological weapons technology started in earnest in 1918 when Japan formed a special section in their military dedicated to the research and development of biological weapons. They believed that "science and technology are the keys to winning war and biological weapons are the most cost effective." Great Britain and the U.S. soon after started a biological weapons program. They shared a fear that the Japanese were getting an unfair advantage. Today, scientists here and abroad tinker with some of the most deadly pathogens known to man. ...read more.

Middle

(4) Even though all countries should have destroyed all their biological weapons after the 1972 treaty banned them the Soviet Union and Iraq developed biological weapons in defiance of the treaty, proving they are easy to hide. Also other countries (including the USA) still have biological stockpiles to respond to "in kind" if they are attacked by another country. The US this year has blocked an agreement on the ways to monitor compliance. (8) In Australia a research team trying to make a mouse contraception vaccine for pest control accidentally created a modified version of mousepox. Mousepox normally causes only mild symptoms in the type of mice used in the study, but when the researchers added IL-4, interleukin, a molecule that occurs naturally in the body, they created a virus that kills every one of its victims, by wiping out part of the immune system. ...read more.

Conclusion

(5) But in that scenario, large numbers of people still might not be affected since infection rates vary among people and because people infected by the virus are highly infectious only seven to 10 days following the outbreak of a rash. Biological weapons have the potential to cause mass destruction, and it is this potential that causes the fear. As we can see in the world today it only causes a few letters with Anthrax in them to cause a whole nation and even global to fear of this new threat. However the actual number of deaths from this new threat is very small (under 10) and 'neither the particular strain or the physical form of anthrax being used is particularly sophisticated, say scientists' (New Scientist, 2001(2)) and so vaccines are available for use. However the only way we will definitely know if biological weapons are an agent of mass destruction if they are ever used to their full potential. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Morality of War section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Morality of War essays

  1. Barrington Dyer and develops the inception of this report, its thesis, and motivation as ...

    Supremacy translated into a deadly game of "who holds the most nukes" where the objective of the game was not to destroy your opponent but rather to intimidate them with your ability to destroy them such that they would not attempt to destroy you.

  2. Christians in developed countries.

    If a person is lucky enough to find a doctor, they will be waiting behind the other 6,400 people waiting to see just that one doctor. This means that the life expectancy in places such as Afghanistan is as little as 43 years and the infant death mortality rate is 270 out of 1000.

  1. Biological weapons

    it and are against this idea of biological weapons; and on the other side the countries that do not follow these regulations because they think that biological weapons are useful for them. The arguments for the countries that are for biological weapons are that biological weapons are very efficient because

  2. Anthrax Threat.

    Many of the materials and equipment that are used to produce biological warfare agents are available from legitimate sources and intended for other uses. The anthrax vaccine was developed in the United States during the 1950s and 1960s and was approved by the FDA in 1970.

  1. Examine the arguments for and against Britain going to war to disarm Iraq of ...

    he has no capability of delivering weapons of mass destruction against American or United Kingdom targets outside of embassies in the Middle East region. That scenario would obviously be tragic, but there is no evidence that Saddam is planning on using weapons against anyone.

  2. Archaeological Instruments - 11th Century.

    The planks were usually only 6-10mm thick. There is no archaeological evidence for laminated construction (H�rke 1981) though contemporary poetry and slightly later legislation suggests it (Dickinson and H�rke 1992; Nicolaysen 1882).

  1. This essay will discuss which of the three previous topics was to blame for ...

    Attacks were often unsuccessful and flawed with many problems. To overcome these problems new and more advanced weapons would have to be invented to enable them to make advancements on the German strong holds. This shows how all three were interlinked, stalemate couldn't have occurred with one and not the other.

  2. ‘Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security’ (UN Dec. Human Rites) - ...

    a Roman Catholic Statement it said 'The monstrous power of nuclear weapons will have fatal consequences for life on earth, justice, right reason and humanity therefore urgently demand that the Arms Race should cease... nuclear weapons should be banned.' This is saying how that Roman Catholics do not agree with

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work