chapter  3
14 Pages

‘Inappropriately Hilarious’: The UK and Incapacitating Chemical Agents

The 1925 Geneva Protocol certainly was a consideration in the 1960s when the UK was looking into acquiring incapacitating chemical agents for a range of scenarios. Drawing general lessons from the UK experience in nuclear and biological arms control and disarmament policies and experiences is perhaps of limited value. In both the cut-off debates that surfaced periodically from the 1950s through to the mid 1960s and again during the SALT and ABM negotiations when the UK was not even a direct participant, the need to ensure that whatever was agreed did not adversely affect the UK nuclear weapons programme was a paramount policy objective. When the authors review the UK's role in the origins of the Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention, there does not appear to have been a direct linkage between the experiences from the offensive programme in the Second World War and in the immediate post-war years.