The war is currently happening in Syria. It is a common knowledge that peace is no longer exists in. there are many refugees seeking refuge. They even seek help up to European continent. As this war is happening in a more modern way, the weapons they use are not exclusive to physical weapons.
Nowadays, they also use lethal chemical as a mean of mass and more effective killing weapons. Surely, those chemicals are limited for military use and common people may not know it. Here is the list of chemicals weapon in Syria.
- VX gas
Syria is one of the country with developed chemical weapons program. One of the chemical based weapon in Syria is VX gas. VX itself is toxic substance in extreme way. This kind of gas is also known as nerve agent. As the name suggests, it targets the nerve system of the victim.
When it gets to people, it will create nerve-wracking sensation followed by blockage of neurotransmitter release. As a result, aceylcholine accumulates in the body and cause extreme fatique, contraction, and paralysis. Prolonged exposure will eventually lead to death. This gas is not as apparent as physical weapon.
Also read: Gas Laws Definition, Formulas, and Examples
Another chemical weapon rumoured in Syria is Sarin. Sarin itself is a synthetic organofosfat that is very poisonous. What makes sarin more dangerous is that it has no smell and transparent color. Thus, make it harder for people to detect without special equipment.
Just like VX gas, sarin is also nerve agent that targets the nervous system of any living being. The lethal exposure can happen just by little dose and few minutes of effect. When someone inhaled it, he or she will experience suffocation because it paralysed lung muscle. In just short time, the victim exposed to it will die. Seeing as how lethal Sarin is, it is rumoured that Syria used it on their war.
The most dreaded chemical weapon is nerve gas and novichok is one of them. Novichok is a powder in ultra fine texture developed in United States and Russia. Unlike other nerve agent that usually colorless and in the form of gas, novichok is in the form of powder. Nonetheless, the symptoms people feel when exposed to novichok is more or less similar to sarin and VX gas reaction.
First, the victim will experience headache, short breath, change in heart rate, sweating and eventually may lead to contraction and paralysis. Gas use usually through direct spraying but novichok can also contaminate food and accumulate until resulting in death.
Also read: Most Harmful Effects of Chemicals to Living Things in Our Daily Life
- Mustard Gas
A popular chemical weapon known since World War is mustard gas. Mustard gas or mustard sulfur is prototype ofcytotoxic that is based on sulfur. Unlike the first three, it is more popular as blister agent. While nerve agent attacks internal organ, mustard gas destroy the skin and create blister on it. The form of mustard gas is yellow with a tint of brow but the pure form of it is colorless.
As for the smell, it resembles the smell of mustard even though there is not any mustard in it. Instead of vaporized like other gas, mustard gas actually dispersed from liquid form, and not in gas form. The toxicity of mustard gas attacks the cellular of the skin and irritation, resulting in instant painful blister. One may never predict just by a spray of this chemical, blister will immediately start to form on their skin with painful intensity.
- Chlorine Gas
Chlorine gas is not purely chemical weapon as it has industrial use too. However, when the chemical gets through inhalation, it releases hydrochloric acid. The hydrochloric acid will trigger production of liquid inside the lung. As for the result, someone lung will get full of liquid. If the liquid is not pumped,it can lead to death.
Even though chlorine gas is not as deadly as nerve agent, its industrial use makes it easy for someone to obtain this gas. Thus, mass spread of it easy to manage without huge cost unlike other chemical weapons. As a result, many small groups in Syrian civil war opt to use this as it is more available and easy to get compared to other chemical weapon.
Phosgene is choking agent that affects inhalation. Similar to mustard gas, phosgene works by stimulating production of liquid inside the lung. As the liquid fills up the lung, the victim will have shortage of oxygen which lead to shortness of breath, sweating, and dropped temperature.
After that victim will feel difficult to breathe and eventually lead to death. The effect of phosgene takes longer than nerve agent but it is also lethal enough. Slow reacted chemical often becomes the alternative to avoid supsicion of illegal use of chemical weapon.
The next chemical weapon on the list is arsine. Arsine is neither nerve, blister or choking agent. Instead it is a blood agent that attacts the blood circulation system. The usual mechanism of blood tissue is to catch and utilize oxygen. When someone exposed to arsine, it destroys these tissues ability to utilize oxygen. As a result, the blood circulation starts weaken and distribution of oxygen to some organs lessened.
Eventually the effect will destroy the organs. The least of the effect is terminal illness and the worst effect is death. The work of blood agent is similar to some snakes poison and to prevent further damage, someone needs to stop the blood circulation. If they have fast enough care, victim may still recover from the poisoning.
As chemical weapon can be sneaky, there is a rule where the use of it cross the red line. It means, its use is actually illegal especially those who use it under cover. Syria has ever received request from United States to withdraw all their chemical weapon supplies. Nonetheless, possible attack using it is still probable in the future. That is all about list of chemicals weapon in Syria.