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.Most people today believe that the developing country is a better place than it was 20 to 30 years ago but it is not true because the world is becoming a very dangerous place. Even though the world’s superpowers condemn nuclear and biological warfare ,we can easily believe that the next millennium will bring a war that will make them change their beliefs toward weapons of mass destruction. If we wanted to know that how biological weapons are threat for our country or developing country then we first need to understand what are biological weapons and how they work.
Biological weapons are toxic material produced from pathogenic organisms
like virus, bacteria or antibody) or artificially manufactured toxic substances
that are used to
intentionally interfere with the biological process of a host like human or
animals. It also
contaminants nonliving materials such as air, water and soil. This biological
weapons can be
dispersed in aerosol form and it’s have no known vaccines.
environment, target host, mode of contraction and diseases or symptoms.
anthrax, Small pox , Ricin, Clostridium botulinam etc.
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of the perfect biological weapon:
1. The perfect biological organism or biologically
derived bioactive substance (BDBS) for use as a weapon should have the
- Highly infectious; requiring only a
few organisms to cause the desired effect (e.g. smallpox) or highly effective; requiring a small quantity of material to
cause the desired effect (e.g. botox).
- Efficiently dispersible, usually in
the air; contagious or effective on contact.
- Readily grown and produced in large quantities.
- table in storage; preferably in a
- Resistant enough to environmental
conditions so as to remain infectious or operational
long enough to affect the majority of the target, but not so persistent as to
affect the occupying army.
- Resistant to treatment; e.g. antibiotics, antibodies, pharmaceutical
of biological weapons:
weapons may target living organisms or an environment seen as affecting the
outcome of a struggle for control. These include humans, both soldiers and
noncombatants, commercial crops and domestic animals, the water supply, the
soil, the air, or any combination of these. The object being, in each case, to
weaken, terrify or punish the enemy to a degree which induces them to comply
with the attacker’s demands.
The existence of biological weapon:
recent movies (e.g. Outbreak), books (e.g. The Cobra Event, The Coming Plague,
The Hot Zone, Rainbow Six) and news reports (Time Magazine 11/24/97; 12/1/1997)
have attracted public attention to the possibility biological weapons being
- In 1985, Iraq began an offensive
biological weapons program producing anthrax, botulinum toxin, and aflatoxin.
During Operation Desert Storm, the coalition of allied forces faced the threat
of chemical and biological agents. Following the Persian Gulf War, Iraq
disclosed that it had bombs, Scud missiles, 122-mm rockets, and artillery
shells armed with botulinum toxin, anthrax, and aflatoxin. They also had spray
tanks fitted to aircraft that could distribute agents over a specific target.
- In September and October of 1984, 751
people were intentionally infected with Salmonella,
an agent that causes food
poisoning, when followers of the Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh contaminated
restaurant salad bars in Oregon.
In 1994, a Japanese sect of the Aum
Shinrikyo cult attempted an aerosolized (sprayed into the air) release of
anthrax from the tops of buildings in Tokyo.
- In 1995, 2 members of a Minnesota
militia group were convicted of possession of ricin,
which they had produced themselves for use in retaliation against local
The suitability of
using biological weapon in the poor developing country:
- Biological weapons have been called the “Poor Nation’s
Atomic Bomb” because they could be developed by nations too poor to
create or deploy nuclear and chemical weapons of mass destruction.
and chemical weapons require rare and significant scientific infrastructure to
develop and deploy them. But biological weapons do not require rare materials,
significant infrastructure, or esoteric knowledge.
example, BW agents cause casualties, due to the incubation periods of the
agents. This weapon is very easy and cheap to produce and can be used to
selectivity target humans, animals ort plants .The cost of the conventional
weapon ( $2000), nuclear armaments($800) and chemical agents ($600) would far
outstrip the bargain-basement price of biological weapons($1) to produce 50%
casualties per square kilometer (1969 dollars)
the contrary, biological weapons can potentially be developed and even mass
produced by commercially available equipment found in many high school or
college science classrooms. Actual germs can be purchased from universities and
other institutions or derived from natural sources.
- Biological weapons could be acquired for covert warfare,
such as sabotage actions behind enemy lines by special-operations forces and
attacks against civilians by state –sponsored terrorists(Tuchker,1996).
- The goal of using of biological weapon would be either to
deter outside intervention altogether or to prevent the stronger side from
bringing to bear the full weight of its conventional military power. For
example, Syria’s chemical and biological warfare capabilities may have played a
role in restraining Israel’s response to a provocative Syrian troop
redeployment near Israeli positions on the Golon Heights in August
1996.According to Israeli defense analyst Dany Shoham, “The fact that there is
a Syrian (biological) arsenal……..affects the balance of power with Israel”(
- In regions of geostrategic importance such as the oil-rich
Middle East, actors pursuing regional ambitions may affect the interests of
the great powers, creating the potential for outside military intervention. Military
intervention involves an inherent imbalance of interests and motivation between
the intervening state and the regional power because the physical security of
the intervening state is not at risk,
where as the very survival of the attacked country may be in jeopardy, For this
reason, a credible threat of biological warfare could be effective in deterring
or curtailing intervention by regional or extra-regional powers(Roberts, 1994:56)
- The military utility of biological weapons is obviously
greater if the adversary lacks effective detectors or defensive gear.
Biological warfare also may have a potent psychological impact, including the
potential to induce terror and undermine the morale of enemy troops. There are
also operational benefits to be gained by forcing enemy troops into cumbersome
protective gear, which degrades military performance and slow the tempo of
The Reasons for Threat:
- Biological warfare agents may be more
potent or than the most lethal chemical warfare agents and provide a broader
area of coverage per pound of payload
than any other weapons system. The proliferation of technology and the
scientific progress in biochemistry and biotechnology have simplified production
requirements and provided the opportunity for creation of exotic agents. These
weapons are very destructive. The atomic bombs of today are about eight to
forty times greater than the bomb denoted on Hiroshima. The Hiroshima blast
killed between 70,000 to 100,000 people instantly. A biological agent can cause
a similar amount of death, it all depends on how well the country is prepared
to spot the spread of the germs, and how populated the area is .
In the third world nations, for example,
the death toll could be greater because of the fact that they do not have the
necessary medical equipment to stop the spread of germs and viruses.
- These weapons are ready to be used at
any time. With recent conflicts between Iraq and the U.S & Britain, and also India and
Pakistan, the threat of unleashing the power of such a weapon has increased
- The favorite biological weapons of
nations are Anthrax, Botulinum, Clostridium and ricin. These agents usually
kill the victims within a day or two after it has come into contact with its
host. These weapons are effective because the particles remain suspended in the
atmosphere for a long enough period to infect large numbers of people.
- These types of weapons are becoming
widely available to more nations and even terrorist groups. “Small nations,
even sub national terrorist groups have the ability to inflict mass destruction
upon their enemies.” One such group is Osama bin Laden’s terrorist group who
has enough money to support this type of action. Some countries suspected of pursuing
biological warfare programs are known sponsors of terrorism and ready to supply
this type of biological weapon.
- For example, The spring 1995 chemical warfare
attack in the subways of Tokyo is a glaring example of just how susceptible
modern society is to this kind of insidious attack. Both Japan and United
kingdom recognized that since biological warfare was horrifying enough to
outlaw, it probably would make an effective weapon, Both countries had very robust
programs as early as 1932 and 1934, respectively.
- Biological weapons as a threat for developing country - জুন 8, 2012