Weapons of Mass Destruction: Types of Weapons of Mass Destruction

Glide to success with Doorsteptutor material for IAS : Get detailed illustrated notes covering entire syllabus: point-by-point for high retention.

  • Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) kills millions of people and has catastrophic effects on lives of future generations
  • Initially referred to Aerial Bombing during WW II but later referred to large scale weaponry of other technologies
  • It is a Nuclear, Radiological, Chemical, Biological or any other weapons
  • The categories of WMD covers Chemical and Biological Weapons (CBW) and Atomic Biological and Chemical Weapons (ABC)

They are distinguished from conventional weapons in three ways:

  • Possess Potential for massive Collateral Damage
  • Non - Legitimate and Inhuman forms warfare
  • Possess Powerful Deterrent Effects

Types of Weapons of Mass Destruction

Nuclear Weapon

  • It is an explosive device works through Fission and Fusion Reactions
  • Devastate entire city
  • First Nuclear weapon developed by the Manhattan Project exploded over HIROSHIMA and NAGASAKI by USA in 1945
  • Nuclear Bombs devastated in three ways: Blast Effect/Thermal Radiation and Nuclear Radiation
  • Thermonuclear Weapons have 2000 times greater destructive force in comparison to those used in Japan

Chemical Weapons

  • Use of various chemicals as weapons for harming
  • Eg: Hydrogen Cyanide, Phosgene, Chlorine, etc.
  • It can be dispersed in Gas Liquid and solid forms
  • The Nazi Germany during WWII committed GENOCIDE using Chemicals

Biological Weapons

  • It make use of Bacterium, Virus , Protozoan , Parasite , Fungus etc. in War
  • There are more than 1200 agents of Biological weapons
  • They affect human Health and causes Allergic Reactions, Disability or Death
  • They require minimal resources for propagation
  • Nuclear weapons were first used in Second World War and had destructive powers
  • Nuclear weapons give the country an advantage over National Security and International importance
  • The first country to use Nuclear Weapons was the United States followed by the Soviet Union
  • Nuclear Nonproliferation Regime (NPR) was attempted to deal with Weapons of Mass Destruction
  • United States advocated the Baruch Plan to control Nuclear Weapons, but Soviet Union rejected this plan
  • In 1953, Eisenhower proposed an ‘Atoms for Peace Plan’
  • In 1957, Atoms for Peace Treaty (APT) came into force and was also signed by the Soviet Union
  • The Atoms for Peace Treaty created the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) for monitoring use of Nuclear Energy
  • In 1963 , a Partial Test Ban Treaty was signed to ban Nuclear tests in Atmosphere, Water and Space
  • China possessed Nuclear Weapons in 1964
  • The Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty was opened for signature in 1968
  • First countries to sign NPT were the Ireland and Finland
  • India , Pakistan and Israel didn՚t sign the Treaty
  • North Korea signed but withdrew from the Treaty in 2003

The three pillars of NPT were as follows:

  • Non-Proliferation
  • Disarmament
  • the Right to peaceful use of Nuclear Energy

The NPT divides its signatories states into two categories:

  • Nuclear Weapons States
  • Non-Nuclear Weapons States

All the parties to NPT undertake to participate in exchange of Equipment՚s, Materials and Information for Peaceful use of Nuclear Energy.

  • India has not signed the NPT as it finds the Treaty as Discriminatory towards States are Not Nuclear Weapons States.
  • The Partial Test Ban Treaty (PTBT) and the Nuclear Nonproliferation treaty (NPT) were not successful in Nuclear Disarmament
  • Signatories of Partial Test Ban Treaty (PTBT) held an Amendment Conference in 1991 to ban Nuclear Tests Everywhere
  • Finally, the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) was opened for signature in 1996
  • In 1993 , a proposal was mooted for a Fissile Material Cut -Off Treaty (FMCT) to ban the production of Fissile Material for Nuclear Explosive Devices
  • The Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR) is an Association of States to unmanned the delivery systems of weapons of Mass Destruction

The members of the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR) Obtains the Following undertaking:

  • Use and End Use Location of the proposed Transfer
  • Transfer will not be used for Weapons of Mass Destruction
  • A post shipment inspection by the exporter
  • In 1972 , Convention on the Prohibition of Production and Stockpiling of Biological weapons was signed known as the Biological Weapons Convention (BWC)
  • In 1993 the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) was signed to Prohibit the Development, Production and Stockpiling And the use of chemical weapons.

Developed by: