Nuclear and Chemical Weaponry

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izzyrooke
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#1
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#1
How has developing warfare shaped the 21st century? And, what are your views on the UK having Nuclear and Chemical weapons?
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Drewski
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#2
(Original post by izzyrooke)
How has developing warfare shaped the 21st century? And, what are your views on the UK having Nuclear and Chemical weapons?
What chemical weapons?
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Just my opinion
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A humungous wide ranging subject.
A 10 point question if ever there was one.
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Andrew97
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Do we even have chemical weapons?
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Drewski
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(Original post by Andrew97)
Do we even have chemical weapons?
I'm still waiting for OP to answer that, it has a significant effect on the question..
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izzyrooke
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On a programme I watched a while ago, Porton Down were creating chemical substance that could kill people in an instant. Then there's mustard gas and chlorine gas that been around since the Great War.
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izzyrooke
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#7
I know it's so wide range it's going to be difficult to narrow it down to a final answer. But it'll hopefully get me the grade for my Welsh Bac A level.
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salim mombasa
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#8
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#8
(Original post by Andrew97)
Do we even have chemical weapons?
Yes
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uberteknik
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#9
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(Original post by salim mombasa)
Yes
Prove it.
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anarchism101
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#10
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Still too early to say on nukes. North Korea is really the only state to have acquired nuclear capacity within the 21st Century. If proliferation continues (as, unfortunately, seems likely in the next few decades unless we really try to get a handle on it), then things might really start to change. If Iran, Saudi Arabia, and maybe Turkey too, acquire some small stockpiles of low-yield weapons, then I'd say chances of a minor (in nuclear terms) regional nuclear war in the Middle East rise significantly.

For the major powers, though, nuclear weapons have actually somewhat declined in value since the turn of the century. It's only really Russia which continues to rely on them as a primary aspect of its security posture - the US, China and even the EU are considerably more confident in their conventional capacities, leaving nuclear as a somewhat secondary threat.
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uberteknik
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(Original post by izzyrooke)
On a programme I watched a while ago, Porton Down were creating chemical substance that could kill people in an instant. Then there's mustard gas and chlorine gas that been around since the Great War.
Research into chemical agents and biological pathogens is an absolute necessity into understanding their effects on humans, livestock, crops and the general environment. Only then can effective treatments and eradication procedures be devised to protect populations and attempt to mitigate loss of life if they are used. Hence Porton Down experts are central to analysing and dealing with the Novichok incidents in Salisbury and surrounding areas.

It is a critical part of the UN treaties on the control of the weapons and the work of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW).

Researching is not the same as manufacturing and stockpiling weapons for use in war.
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izzyrooke
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(Original post by uberteknik)
Research into chemical agents and biological pathogens is an absolute necessity into understanding their effects on humans, livestock and the environment. Only then can effective treatments and eradication procedures be devised to protect populations and attempt to mitigate loss of life if they are used. Hence Porton Down experts are central to dealing with the Novichok incidents in Salisbury and surrounding areas.

It is a critical part of the UN treaties on the control of the weapons and the work of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW).

Researching is not the same as manufacturing and stockpiling weapons for use in war.
That's a really helpful answer thank you! What would you say to the manufacture of nuclear weapons then, if the chemical research is beneficial in fighting against those who are using chemicals as weapons, what's your view on the manufacturing of nuclear weapons?
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ChaoticButterfly
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#13
(Original post by anarchism101)
Still too early to say on nukes. North Korea is really the only state to have acquired nuclear capacity within the 21st Century. If proliferation continues (as, unfortunately, seems likely in the next few decades unless we really try to get a handle on it), then things might really start to change. If Iran, Saudi Arabia, and maybe Turkey too, acquire some small stockpiles of low-yield weapons, then I'd say chances of a minor (in nuclear terms) regional nuclear war in the Middle East rise significantly.
But mutually assured destruction was err... assured to prevent nuclear war.
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Napp
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#14
(Original post by izzyrooke)
That's a really helpful answer thank you! What would you say to the manufacture of nuclear weapons then, if the chemical research is beneficial in fighting against those who are using chemicals as weapons, what's your view on the manufacturing of nuclear weapons?
Well you should bear in mind it is nominally banned under the NPT. As all nations are meant to work towards a nuclear free world the continued production of warheads would appear to be counter to the spirit of the treaty.
You should probably also look at the 3rd order effects nuclear weapons have, namely in that they have so far proved to be the ultimate guarantee of a nations surviveability in this hobbesian world we live in with Iraq and Libya being the cases par excellence [something the DPRK and Iran have taken on board]
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Napp
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#15
(Original post by anarchism101)
For the major powers, though, nuclear weapons have actually somewhat declined in value since the turn of the century. It's only really Russia which continues to rely on them as a primary aspect of its security posture - the US, China and even the EU are considerably more confident in their conventional capacities, leaving nuclear as a somewhat secondary threat.
Its worth bearing in mind that this is changing, with regards to the US and China, with the US refurbishing and replacing [or at least making inroads into the process of starting] and China, or so the security community think, is also starting to its nuclear capabilities a fresh look.
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uberteknik
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#16
(Original post by izzyrooke)
That's a really helpful answer thank you! What would you say to the manufacture of nuclear weapons then, if the chemical research is beneficial in fighting against those who are using chemicals as weapons, what's your view on the manufacturing of nuclear weapons?
They exist and the knowledge to make them cannot be undone.

Because of the events leading up to the end of WWII and the subsequent escalation of the Cold War with the U.S.S.R., the stockpiling of weapons by both sides has meant we are left with a legacy in which there is little trust but also the concept of Mutually Assured Destruction is an effective deterrence against their use in conflict.

Arguably, strategic ballistic weapons have kept another World War at bay, with nuclear states engaging in proxy wars but always avoiding direct confrontation.

The sovereignties which currently posses these weapons should always strive to bilateral and independently verified controlled reduction.

Non-proliferation organisations must have the ability to police with hard diplomacy - talk softly and carry a big stick in the form of global sanctions from the UN. trouble is the UN is toothless because each of the big five nuclear states have a veto on any agreements - and use it to scupper anything that may erode their global or regional interests.

Non nuclear weapon states should be actively deterred from ever developing and manufacturing them.

All of this is easier said than done as recent events in North Korea and Iran have shown, with miscreant nations clandestine development becoming key strategic aims to establish regional power and dictate terms to others.

They have dangerously become a powerful diplomatic bargaining tool for smaller states to hold the rest of the world to ransom.

I'm not worried about the original nuclear states (before the global non-proliferation treaties came into existence) of the U.S., Russia, China, France or the U.K. ever actually using them as a first strike weapon (WWII is not part of the evaluation since the U.S. has not used any in anger for the last 73 years. There is no reason to suggest they will do so anytime soon regardless of the bellicose rhetoric of others.)

The key issue is how to prevent proliferation and that example can only be set by the biggest possession nations agreeing to and be seen to work towards multi-lateral reductions and eventual complete disarmament. In an ideal world of course.
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Napp
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#17
(Original post by uberteknik)
They exist and the knowledge to make them cannot be undone.
Amusingly enough you can find the instruction manual to build a rudimentary gun type weapon online without much bother.


Non-proliferation organisations must have the ability to police with hard diplomacy - talk softly and carry a big stick in the form of global sanctions from the UN. trouble is the UN is toothless because each of the big five nuclear states have a veto on any agreements - and use it to scupper anything that may erode their global or regional interests.
It also doesnt help when certain countries like America call them in and then undermine them utterly like in Iraq.
Non nuclear weapon states should be actively deterred from ever developing and manufacturing them.
I trust you can see the issue with this statement, yes?
All of this is easier said than done as recent events in North Korea and Iran have shown, with miscreant nations clandestine development becoming key strategic aims to establish regional power and dictate terms to others.
North Korea sure but Iran hasnt done anything since 2003...
They have dangerously become a powerful diplomatic bargaining tool for smaller states to hold the rest of the world to ransom.
Not really... When you say "small states" one assumes you're reffering to North Korea and former Iraqi/Libyan/Syrian ambitions in which case all the evidence points to the weapons being designed to protect themselves from regime change as opposed to "holding the world to ransom"
I'm not worried about the original nuclear states (before the global non-proliferation treaties came into existence) of the U.S., Russia, China, France or the U.K. ever actually using them as a first strike weapon (WWII is not part of the evaluation since the U.S. has not used any in anger for the last 73 years. There is no reason to suggest they will do so anytime soon regardless of the bellicose rhetoric of others.)
Given the famously blase attitude the Russians have to security and the fact America has lost several of its nukes, dropped them on their own country and otherwise just generally shown a wanton disregard for their security...
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salim mombasa
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#18
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#18
(Original post by uberteknik)
Prove it.
It's a known fact that Britain has nuclear weapons . What do you mean prove it?
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uberteknik
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#19
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#19
(Original post by salim mombasa)
It's a known fact that Britain has nuclear weapons . What do you mean prove it?
In post #8, your answer was in response to Andrew97 and whether the UK has a stockpile of illegal chemical weapons.

That question is clearly not addressed at nuclear.
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Jake.t01
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#20
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#20
The uk doesn't have chemical weapons. ( that we know of )
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