Chemical and Biological Warfare

A Reference Handbook, 2nd Edition

by Al Mauroni


Short of a nuclear holocaust, no weapons are more frightening to us—or more sensationalized by the media—than chemical and biological weapons. But we can face these invisible killers and even overcome them, writes former army chemical officer Al Mauroni, if we stop moralizing and focus on understanding the facts.

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Cover image for Chemical and Biological Warfare

November 2006


Pages 319
Volumes 1
Size 6x9
Topics Security Studies/Science, Technology, and Security
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A thorough handbook covering the facts, history, and controversies surrounding our most controversial and misunderstood unconventional weapons.

Unlike most books on this topic, the expanded second edition of Mauroni's popular reference handbook is neither sensationalistic nor moralistic. Instead, it offers readers a reasoned, thorough, and fact-based introduction to this highly charged issue.

Covering the period from World War I through the Iraq War, Chemical and Biological Warfare not only describes the development of key chemical and biological agents, such as anthrax, tularemia, brucellosis, VEE, Q fever, and botulinum toxin, it also assesses the threats we face, compares military CB warfare with terrorist incidents, explains effective defensive measures, and clarifies the responsibilities of the various federal agencies charged to address these issues. With extensive new material, this edition provides an authoritative and up-to-date introduction to this vitally important topic.


  • Outstanding research aids include key Internet and published references and an index offering rapid access to entries on key figures, government agencies, and defensive equipment
  • A chronology of chemical-biological warfare incidents from the mid-20th century onward offers a thorough historical overview


  • Includes extensive new material emphasizing Iraq and the global war on terrorism
  • Summarizes the key chemical and biological warfare agents in operational as well as technical contexts
  • Includes a series of case studies that provide perspective on both military and political controversies
Series Description

Contemporary World Issues

This award-winning series offers comprehensive, one-volume reference handbooks on important topics related to health, education, the environment, and social and ethical issues.

24-hour cable news. Millions of Internet sites. Information overload. How can we sort through the information? Assess the analyses? Trust the sources?

A world of questions demands a library of answers. Contemporary World Issues covers the controversial topics that students, readers, and citizens want to read about, write about, and know more about.


  • Subject coverage spans six main categories:
  • Each volume offers a rich array of resources:
  • A background and history essay that provides essential context and grounding for further study
  • A balanced summary of ongoing controversies and proposed solutions that show numerous paths for further research on pressing, contemporary questions
  • A forum of authoritative perspective essays by experts, offering a broad spectrum of arguments on the issues
  • Carefully selected annotated documents, tables, and graphs that supports statistical literacy and investigation of primary sources
  • A chronology of events, legislation, and movements that place events in sequence and draw connections between them
  • Annotated lists of print, Web, and multimedia resources that power the next steps for in-depth research
  • Profiles of key players and organizations
  • A glossary of key terms
Author Info

Al Mauroni is a defense consultant in the Washington, DC area. He has more than 20 years of experience in military chemical and biological defense issues, and is the author of five books, including the first edition of ABC-CLIO's Chemical and Biological Warfare.

Table of Contents

Chemical and Biological Warfare: A Reference Handbook, Second EditionTable of ContentsPreface1. Background and History2. Problems, Controversies, and Solutions3. Worldwide Perspective4. Chronology5. Biographical Sketches6. Facts and Data7. Case Studies8. Directory of Organizations9. Print and Non-print ResourcesGlossaryIndex



"Any college-level reference collection strong in science, technology, and military history will find the second updated edition of Chemical and Biological Warfare an essential addition. ... An excellent, well-rounded reference."Midwest Book Review

"this is a timely and a valuable source, which like virtually all of the outstanding Contemporary World Issues series, should be in most libraries that serve a student or popular audience."ARBA

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