History Of Chemistry Essay

929 words - 4 pages

Chemical weapons are deadly, in-humane, not safe, and overkill. They are consider WMDs (Weapons of Mass Destruction) and have been on the rise since the early 1900s. These weapons are past and present proof that chemistry can crossover into technology. And have a huge impact on society for decades.
Chemical weapons originated in early World War I. They were simple grenades or mortars filled with common chemicals. These specialized grenades were popularized by the Germans and then were seen used by even the Allied Forces. They were popularized by their area of effect and useful in the trench warfare.
There are several different types of chemical weapons and they all have different effects on their victims. All the effects being extremely painful and horrifying. There are Blister Agents, Nerve Agents, Blood Agents, and Choking Agents. All of these agents being chemically and illegally formed.
The first being Vesicant, or blister agents. These contained mustard gas or C4H8Cl2S. It left its victims covered in water blisters that were painful beyond belief. These blisters are caused by the chemicals increasing the skin's sensitivity to light, making it burn severely.
Next is Nerve Agents, which are considered to be organophosphates. Nerve agents work by stopping flow of ACh, which is responsible of muscle contraction. When effected it leaves you with no control of your body, leading you to a slow painful death.
Then, there is Blood Agents. Blood Agents are fast acting, cyanide or arsenic type of positions. They work quickly and go into your bloodstream. At short term exposures it can just cause dizziness and nausea. But long term can cause brain damage and muscle paralysis.
Last but not least there is Choking Agents. Choking agents, as they sound, cause the victim to choke and lose the ability to breathe. The most common chemical being Phosgene, or CCl2O. Phosgene is a color and odorless gas that can kill quickly. It was discovered by a British chemist, John Davy; but was used by the Imperial Japanese Army against the Chinese.
All of these chemical agents were used around the WWI era by both the allied and central powers. People then determined that they were inhumane and they were outlawed via different world laws. The laws started to appear in the early 1920s and different ones were issued throughout the next few decades. This affected warfare greatly causing the weapons to fill military stockpiles everywhere and are extremely illegal to date.
The first world law was the Geneva Protocol.This law “prohibits the use of "asphyxiating, poisonous or other gases, and of all analogous liquids, materials or devices" and "bacteriological methods of warfare". It was named the “Geneva” Protocol because it was written into place in Geneva,...

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