Blogs by Ann Massey
Bilogical Warfare : Is it ever justified?
1/22/2011 8:41:31 PM
Biological weapons terrorism is one of the most urgent problems that confronts world peace. Five countries with developed biological warfare technology are suspected of sponsoring international terrorism.
As a rule, biological warfare is typically considered in terms of military use during warfare but the risk of a terrorist organization using biological agents to coerce governments presents an equally viable threat to global security. For instance, a comparatively small cell, using single individuals in densely populated areas could bring about the infection of a large percentage of the population.
To date there is no evidence that any state has provided the technology to terrorist organizations but five countries with developed biological warfare technology are suspected of sponsoring international terrorism.
Are any methods of killing humans in war morally wrong?
158 countries thought so. Convinced that the use of bacteriological (biological) agents and toxins as weapons was repugnant to the conscience of mankind, they were parties and signatories to the convention prohibiting the development, production and stockpiling of bacteriological (biological) and toxin weapons and on their destruction.
But current events have shown that signatories flouted the convention before the ink had time to dry. As early as 1979, the former Soviet Union was carrying out research into the military use of Anthrax and in 1995 Iraq disclosed they had stockpiles of anthrax, Botulinum toxin and aflatoxin for use as weapons. And there is plenty of evidence that shows that research into the offensive use of biological weapons persists.
One of the signatories to the convention is the United States. George Washington would turn in his grave. He was quoted as saying: 'To be prepared for war is one of the most effectual ways of preserving peace.'
Maybe he had a point. If, it is impossible to exclude completely the possibility of rogue states and terrorist organizations using bacteriological agents as weapons, should we, no matter how repugnant, arm ourselves with weapons of equal power. After all, self preservation is the first law of nature.
Mo and Beth, the teenagers who find the wreckage from the International Space Station would disagree. In Beth's own words:
Sometimes you've got to forget about your own self interest and think of the greater good. Remember Hiroshima."
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