CBRNE encompasses chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, and explosive materials that individuals can use to cause harm in society. Regarding chemical weapons, the main substances used include blister agents such as nitrogen mustard and nerve agents, including Sarin and Tabun. Four types of chemical weapons include blister, nerve, blood agents, and choking (Malizia & D’Arienzo, 2018). Biological weapons are categorized into three areas, namely A, B, and C. Biological weapons come in the form of agents, such as plague, anthrax, and botulism, or microorganisms, such as bacteria, virus, or other toxins. Radiological threat agents include radioactive materials released that can cause health problems to the public. Unintentional radiologic scenarios, such as nuclear reactor accidents and spilling of radioactive material expose people to high levels of radiation. Nuclear weapons are made using enriched uranium-235 and plutonium isotopes. Nuclear weapons require detonation of the nuclear device within the target area (Richardt, Hülseweh, Niemeyer, & Sabath, 2013). Explosive weapons contain materials, such as hydrogen peroxide, fertilizer, and gunpowder. Examples of explosive substances are IEDs, dynamite, and TNT.
Advantages of CBRNE Weapons
In the perspective of the enemy, CBRNE weapons offer advantages as compared to the various conventional weapons. The weapons have special physical properties that allow them to penetrate fortification or structures that obscure the target areas. For example, the use of chemical and biological weapons makes it hard for the targeted groups to move or survive. The use choking or nerve agents immobilize movements and the enemies can use the opportunity to attack. Groups that use CBRNE weapons understand different ways of protecting themselves from these chemicals in the case of accidental release or spill (Bland, 2014). Enemy groups such as terrorists find these weapons convenient because they cause devastating damage and long-lasting health problems.
Disadvantages of CBRNE Weapons
The harm that CBRNE weapons cause is extreme and long-lasting. For example, the use of biological weapons to attack some people such as nerve agents or anthrax could be fatal. Some situations lead to long-lasting problems, such as paralysis or cancer associated with radiation. The release of chemical weapons causes illnesses and destruction of property such as the release of hydrogen peroxide explosives (Bland, 2014). The use of nuclear weapons, as well as accidental release of radiation from nuclear power generating areas, lead to long-lasting effects such as environmental pollution because of the radiation released.
Directed-Energy Weapons (DEWs)
DEW entails a ranged weapon that destroys its target with highly focused energy, such as microwaves, sound beams, and lasers, among others. The applications of this technology include the creation of weapons that target specific areas, such as missiles, personnel, and optical devices (Obering, 2019). The development of DEWs continues, which will equip global armies with highly effective weapons.
From the various CDRNE weapons, I believe that nuclear weapons are our biggest threat. The weapons cause mass loss of lives and destruction to proper. The radiation released cause health effects that lead to diseases and further loss of lives.