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A History of Nerve Agents, From Nazi Germany to Putin's Russia

Dan Kaszeta



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C Hurst & Co Publishers Ltd
01 June 2020
History; Military history: post WW2 conflicts; Chemical & biological weapons
Nerve agents are the world's deadliest means of chemical warfare. Nazi Germany developed the first military-grade nerve agents and massive industry for their manufacture-yet, strangely, the Third Reich never used them. At the end of the Second World War, the Allies were stunned to discover this advanced and extensive programme. The Soviets and Western powers embarked on a new arms race, amassing huge chemical arsenals.

From their Nazi invention to the 2018 Novichok attack in Britain, Dan Kaszeta uncovers nerve agents' gradual spread across the world, despite international arms control efforts. They've been deployed in the Iran-Iraq War, by terrorists in Japan, in the Syrian Civil War, and by assassins in Malaysia and Salisbury-always with bitter consequences.

'Toxic' recounts the grisly history of these weapons of mass destruction: a deadly suite of invisible, odourless killers.
By:   Dan Kaszeta
Imprint:   C Hurst & Co Publishers Ltd
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 216mm,  Width: 138mm, 
ISBN:   9781787383067
ISBN 10:   1787383067
Pages:   408
Publication Date:   01 June 2020
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Hardback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Dan Kaszeta lives in London, where he runs a specialist consulting firm. He has decades of experience in protecting against chemical and biological weapons, and has held positions in the US Army, the White House Military Office, the US Secret Service and private industry.

Reviews for Toxic: A History of Nerve Agents, From Nazi Germany to Putin's Russia

'Dan Kaszeta weaves an extraordinary narrative from the secret history of some of the deadliest substances ever created. From the plains of north Germany to the suburbs of Damascus he explains the development and use of nerve agents, employing his own deep knowledge, telling detail, and deadpan humour.' -- Mark Urban 'Impeccably researched and engagingly written, Toxic tells a fascinating, dark tale, which has a chilling resonance for our own times.' -- Roger Moorhouse, historian, and author of 'The Devils' Alliance: Hitler's Pact with Stalin, 1939-1941' and 'First to Fight: The Polish War 1939' 'This is an accessible, well written and very useful book on a difficult and contentious topic. Offering a dispassionate account of the inception of nerve agents, Kaszeta does a great service by gathering up the history of these chemicals into one authoritatively written volume.' -- Dr Matthew Ford, University of Sussex, author of 'Weapon of Choice: Small Arms and the Culture of Military Innovation' 'From Sarin to Novichok, the twenty-first century demonstrates that the use of nerve agents ... is an increasing threat to civilian populations across the world. ... How we reached this moment should not be forgotten, and nor should that history be twisted by conspiracists pursuing their own agendas.' -- Eliot Higgins, founder of Bellingcat, the open-source investigative journalism website

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