Negotiations to Control Chemical and Biological Warfare: The Post-World War II Years

  • Victor A. Utgoff


After World War II chemical weapons disarmament did not get the attention it had received during the inter-war years as Hiroshima and Nagasaki had introduced the world to nuclear weapons, ‘the destructive power of which overshadowed everything else.’ 1 The United Nations did not even broach the topic of chemical warfare until the 1947–48 discussions on ‘weapons of mass destruction,’ which eventually were defined to include ‘lethal chemical and biological weapons.’ At the war’s end, the Geneva Protocol, the only international agreement prohibiting chemical weapon use, remained unratified by the US despite its acceptance by over 40 other nations prior to the war. In 1947, the US removed the Protocol from the Senate calendar and, some five years later, openly declared it obsolete.


Nerve Agent Chemical Weapon Biological Weapon Biological Warfare Bilateral Talk 
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Notes and References

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Copyright information

© Victor A. Utgoff 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • Victor A. Utgoff
    • 1
  1. 1.Strategy, Forces and Resources DivisionInstitute for Defense AnalysesAlexandriaUSA

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