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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

The meaning and definition of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) continue to evolve over time and with technology. Though the phrase was first used in a New York Times article in 1937, referring to a saturation bombing during the Spanish Civil War, the first administrative use of the term came when the United Nations established the Atomic Energy Agency in 1946. Originally referring only to atomic weapons, through treaties and international conventions, WMD has come to include all types of nuclear, biological, chemical, and toxic weapons. Today an exact definition of WMD is nonexistent, varying by place and policy. However, in general WMD are broken down into the following four categories of weaponry: Nuclear, biological, chemical, and radiological.

Due to the longevity and range of destruction ...

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