A weapon of mass destruction is a nuclear, chemical, biological, or any other weapon that can kill and bring significant harm to numerous humans or cause great damage to human-made structures, natural structures, or the biosphere. The scope and usage of the term has evolved and been disputed signifying more politically than technically. Coined in reference to aerial bombing with chemical explosives during World War II, it has come to refer to large-scale weaponry of other technologies, such as chemical, radiological, or nuclear warfare; the first use of the term "weapon of mass destruction" on record is by Cosmo Gordon Lang, Archbishop of Canterbury, in 1937 in reference to the aerial bombardment of Guernica, Spain: Who can think at this present time without a sickening of the heart of the appalling slaughter, the suffering, the manifold misery brought by war to Spain and to China? Who can think without horror of what another widespread war would mean, waged as it would be with all the new weapons of mass destruction?
At the time, nuclear weapons had not been developed. Japan conducted research on biological weapons, chemical weapons had seen wide battlefield use in World War I, they were outlawed by the Geneva Protocol of 1925. Italy used mustard agent against civilians and soldiers in Ethiopia in 1935–36. Following the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki that ended World War II and during the Cold War, the term came to refer more to non-conventional weapons; the application of the term to nuclear and radiological weapons is traced by William Safire to the Russian phrase "Оружие массового поражения" – oruzhiye massovogo porazheniya. William Safire credits James Goodby with tracing what he considers the earliest known English-language use soon after the nuclear bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki: a communique from a 15 November 1945, meeting of Harry Truman, Clement Attlee and Mackenzie King referred to "weapons adaptable to mass destruction."Safire says Bernard Baruch used that exact phrase in 1946.
The phrase found its way into the first resolution the United Nations General assembly adopted in January 1946 in London, which used the wording "the elimination from national armaments of atomic weapons and of all other weapons adaptable to mass destruction." The resolution created the Atomic Energy Commission. An exact use of this term was given in a lecture "Atomic Energy as an Atomic Problem" by J. Robert Oppenheimer, he delivered the lecture to the Foreign Service and the State Department, on 17 September 1947. It is a far reaching control which would eliminate the rivalry between nations in this field, which would prevent the surreptitious arming of one nation against another, which would provide some cushion of time before atomic attack, therefore before any attack with weapons of mass destruction, which would go a long way toward removing atomic energy at least as a source of conflict between the powers; the term was used in the introduction to the hugely influential U. S. government document known as NSC 68 written in 1950.
During a speech at Rice University on 12 September 1962, President John F. Kennedy spoke of not filling space "with weapons of mass destruction, but with instruments of knowledge and understanding." The following month, during a televised presentation about the Cuban Missile Crisis on 22 October 1962, Kennedy made reference to "offensive weapons of sudden mass destruction."An early use of the exact phrase in an international treaty is in the Outer Space Treaty of 1967, but the treaty provides no definition of the phrase, the treaty categorically prohibits the stationing of "weapons" and the testing of "any type of weapon" in outer space, in addition to its specific prohibition against placing in orbit, or installing on celestial bodies, "any objects carrying nuclear weapons or any other kinds of weapons of mass destruction." During the Cold War, the term "weapons of mass destruction" was a reference to nuclear weapons. At the time, in the West the euphemism "strategic weapons" was used to refer to the American nuclear arsenal.
However, there is no precise definition of the "strategic" category, neither considering range nor yield of the nuclear weapon. Subsequent to Operation Opera, the destruction of a pre-operational nuclear reactor inside Iraq by the Israeli Air Force in 1981, the Israeli prime minister, Menachem Begin, countered criticism by saying that "on no account shall we permit an enemy to develop weapons of mass destruction against the people of Israel." This policy of pre-emptive action against real or perceived weapons of mass destruction became known as the Begin Doctrine. The term "weapons of mass destruction" continued to see periodic use in the context of nuclear arms control. Reagan's successor, George H. W. Bush, used the term in a 1989 speech to the United Nations in reference to chemical arms; the end of the Cold War reduced U. S. reliance on nuclear weapons as a deterrent. With the 1990 invasion of Kuwait and 1991 Gulf War, Iraq's nuclear and chemical weapons programs became a particular concern of the first Bush Administration.
Rubén Horacio Galletti is a former Argentine footballer who two Primera División championships and played for the Argentina national team. Galletti began his playing career with Boca Juniors in a game against Platense on 18 April 1971. After playing only ten games for Boca, he joined Estudiantes de La Plata where he made a total of 203 appearances and scored 88 goals in his two spells with the club. Between 1978 and 1979 he played for Boca's fiercest rivals River Plate where he won both the Metropolitano and the Nacional championship in 1979. Galletti returned to Estudiantes in 1980 where he was part of the Metropolitano championship winning team in 1982. Galletti played out his career with Argentinos Juniors, Huracán and Talleres de Remedios de Escalada. Galletti's son Luciano played for Estudiantes before continuing his career in Italy. Father and son made headlines in the Argentina press in October 2012, when they became donor and recipient in a kidney transplantation after Luciano had to retire from activity while playing for Olympiacos in 2010, following an acute kidney failure.
BDFA profile Profile at Historia de Boca
USS Serpens was a Crater-class cargo ship commissioned by the United States Navy for service in World War II. She was the first ship of the US Navy to have this name: she is named after Serpens, a constellation in the northern hemisphere. Serpens was manned by United States Coast Guard personnel and was responsible for delivering troops and equipment to locations in the Asiatic-Pacific Theater. Serpens was laid down on 10 March 1943, under a Maritime Commission contract, MC hull 739, as the Liberty ship SS Benjamin N. Cardozo, by California Shipbuilding Corporation, Terminal Island, Los Angeles, California. P. Needham. Following shakedown off southern California, Serpens loaded general cargo at Alameda and, on 24 June, sailed west to assume provision ship duties in support of operations in the Solomons. By mid-July, she was in the Tonga Islands. At the end of the month, she was en route from New Caledonia to New Zealand, she took on more cargo. On 9 November, Serpens returned to New Caledonia. In early December, she moved into the southern Solomons.
During January 1944, she completed two runs into Empress Augusta Bay. In February, she was ordered back to New Zealand for dry-docking before loading dry provisions. For the next four months, Serpens delivered consignments to bases in the New Hebrides and the Solomons, returning to New Zealand to reload only once. In July, she was at Purvis Bay for the installation of SF-1 radar, she resumed operations and, through October, carried general cargo and rolling stock between ports and anchorages in the Solomons. In mid-November, she loaded repairable vehicles from the Russells and from Guadalcanal and sailed for New Zealand where, after offloading, three of her holds were converted for ammunition stowage. Late in December 1944, the Liberty ship commenced loading at Wellington, finished it at Auckland, returned to the Solomons in mid-January 1945. Late in the evening on 29 January 1945, Serpens was anchored off Lunga Beach; the commanding officer and seven others, one officer and six enlisted men, were ashore.
The remaining crewmen were loading depth charges into her holds. After the explosion, only the bow of the ship was visible; the rest had disintegrated, the bow sank soon afterward. One hundred ninety-six Coast Guard crewmen, 57 Army stevedores, a Public Health Service physician, Dr. Harry M. Levin, were killed in the explosion, a soldier ashore was killed by shrapnel. Only two of those on board, Seaman 1/c Kelsie K. Kemp and SN 1/c George S. Kennedy, in the boatswain's locker, survived. An eyewitness to the disaster stated: "As we headed our personnel boat shoreward the sound and concussion of the explosion reached us, and, as we turned, we witnessed the awe-inspiring death drama unfold before us; as the report of screeching shells filled the air and the flash of tracers continued, the water splashed throughout the harbor as the shells hit. We headed our boat in the direction of the smoke and as we came into closer view of what had once been a ship, the water was filled only with floating debris, dead fish, torn life jackets and other unidentifiable objects.
The smell of death, fire, gasoline, oil was evident and nauseating. This was sudden death, horror and unasked for, but complete."Lieutenant Commander Stinson reported: "I felt and saw two flashes after which only the bow of the ship was visible. The rest had disintegrated and the bow sank soon afterwards." The two survivors, SN 1/c Kemp and SN 1/c Kennedy, according to Stinson, "...showed a lot of savvy by grabbing a couple of water lights that we kept stowed in the locker. They used them to attract attention when they climbed out onto the floating portion of the bow." Both men were rescued by a base commander in the area. At first report the incident was attributed to enemy action but a court of inquiry determined that the cause of the explosion could not be established from the remaining evidence and by 1949, the Navy noted that the loss was not due to enemy action but due to an "accident intrinsic to the loading process." The loss of Serpens remains the largest single disaster suffered by the Coast Guard.
The dead were buried at the Army and Marine Corps Cemetery at Guadalcanal. Their remains were exhumed and taken to Arlington National Cemetery where they were interred on 15 June 1949. A large monument in their honor was erected over the grave site and dedicated on 16 November 1950; as of 2019, there is an active effort to reexamine the sinking to see if it was caused by a Japanese submarine. The wreck is located at: 9°24′37″S 160°0′40″E Serpens earned one battle star for her World War II service. Citations Atkinson, Rick. Where Valor Rests. Washington, D. C.: National Geographic. ISBN 1-4262-0089-7. "BENJAMIN N. CARDOZO". United States Department of Transportation. Retrieved 11 February 2017. "USS Serpens AK-97". Pacific Wrecks. 3 May 2016. Retrieved 11 February 2017. Photo gallery of USS Serpens at NavSource Naval History USS Serpens Photo Gallery Roll of Honor