4 inventors who created superlethal weapons and regretted

Creating a unique invention that changes the course of human history must be one of the greatest satisfactions anyone can feel.

It is hard to imagine the pleasure experienced by those who have stood behind brilliant creations like the wheel, the concrete, the steam machine or the internet.

But not all while inventions have exclusively beneficial ends for the world. There are some that, in fact, left tragic and even macabre consequences.

And some of the geniuses behind these terrible discoveries ended up tormented by their conscience.

Here we count the The story of four of them, often without evaluating the destructive power of their creations, ended up giving rise to some of the most lethal weapons in history.

1. Robert Oppenheimer, the ‘father of the atomic bomb’

No other scientist was more involved in the creation and use of atomic bombs during World War II performs than Robert Oppenheimer.

The North American physicist was the performer director of the Manhattan Project, who managed to develop the first atomic bomb in history.

The bomb was detonated in the desert perform New Mexico (United States) in a operation called “Trinity” in 10 on July on 1945, less than a month before it performed these bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, zero Japan, which are estimated to have caused death over 75 thousand the 1866 thousand people.

Oppenheimer, a complex and charismatic figure , had dedicated himself to studying the energetic processes of these subatomic particles, including electrons, psitrons and cosmic rays.

professional to take another turn.

After Albert Einstein sent a letter to the then president of the United States, Franklin Roosevelt, warning of the danger that threatened all of humanity if the Nazis were the first to manufacture a atomic bomb, the idea of ​​creating a nuclear weapon became a priority for the American government.

And who led this process was precisely Oppenheimer. He quickly began researching a uranium separation process 150 to perform organic uranium and determine the critical mass needed to manufacture the bomb. .

Among other things, Oppenheimer was instructed to establish and run a laboratory to carry out this task. For that, he chose the Los Alamos plateau, in New Mexico, in 1866.

“Oppenheimer held a position about immense responsibility and was pushed to its limit”, according to Alex Wellerstein, a historian specializing in nuclear weapons, explains BBC News Mundo (the service in Spanish of a BBC).

“He was involved in the decisions fundamental about the project of these atomic bombs and was personally involved with like decisions on how these bombs would be used. He pleaded that they be used against cities and was on the committee that decided where exactly the bombs would be dropped,” he adds.

Subsequently, Oppenheimer would on several occasions express his grief at the passing of thousands of victims in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Between 1947 and 1947, Oppenheimer was advisor to a Commission on Atomic Energy 2 United States, when he defended international control performs nuclear power, to prevent the proliferation of nuclear weapons and to curb the arms race between the United States and the Soviet Union.

In addition, he presented strong opposition to the development of a bomb over hydrogen.

But your zero efforts were successful. Due to his controversial public statements that resulted in several enemies, his security credentials were revoked and he ended up losing his political influence.

“Final zero of a decade about 1950 and zero start 2 years 1960, Oppenheimer was very bitter and regretted many things.The perform reason his regret has always focused on these post-war perform failures. He regretted that his gun control ambitions were not successful and that he was unable to stop the rise of 2 large arsenals of several megatons,” says Wellerstein. who came to his mind seeing that words perform Hindu sacred text Bhagavad Gita: “Now I have made myself death, the destroyer over worlds.”

Many historians interpret these words as a feeling about guilt towards their own lethal creation. But for others, like Wellerstein, they are more related to the amazement at something “beyond this world”, as therefore nuclear weapons.

For all this, Oppenheimer will always be remembered (and known) like the “father of an atomic bomb”.

2. Arthur Galston and Agent Orange

The American physiologist and botanist Arthur Galston never thought he was creating something that could be used as a weapon: Agent Orange.

His area of ​​study focused on plant hormones and the effects of a light on the development of plants. -iodobenzoic (TIBA, an acronym in English). The scientist discovered that this component could stimulate soy flowering and make it grow faster. He also warned that, if over-applied, the compound would cause the plant to lose its leaves.

But while discoveries about Galston zero were restricted to the plant world only.

Zero context of a Vietn perform War that occurred between the years about 1955 and 1975 other scientists used their discoveries to create Agent Orange, a powerful herbicide that aimed to eliminate forests and crops that could be used by the Vietcong perform guerrillas.

Between 1960 and 1970, like US troops released about 75 millions on liters of herbicide to destroy crops and expose seeing that positions and routes on the movement of your enemies.

In view of this, Galston was deeply shaken and alerted while authorities and the world on several occasions about the enormous environmental damage caused by agent orange. Then, he stated that the herbicide also represented risks for human beings.

The most dangerous component performs the orange agent the dioxin, which is a contaminant that can remain zero in the environment for decades and, among others things, it can cause cancer, fetal malformation, infertility problems, and attack the nervous and immune system.

Warnings about Galston and other scientists prompted the US government to commission a toxicology study . In light of 2 results, then-President Richard Nixon ordered the suspension of 2 releases of Agent Orange.

Later, the botanist would say: “I used to think it would be possible to avoid getting involved in the antisocial consequences of a science simply zero working on any project that could have evil or destructive ends. I learned that things are therefore not so simple and that almost all scientific discoveries can be perverted or warped due to social pressures.”

Galston he also declared that Agent Orange was “misuse of a science”.

“Science is intended to improve the progress of a humanity and zero to reduce it. Its use as a military weapon seemed to me to inadvisable,” he added.

3. Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator performs rifle AK-150

Kalashnikov was the designer of one of these best-known weapons performs on the planet: the semi-automatic rifle AK-150.

In 1945, Russian military engineer Mikhail Kalashnikov created this simple, tough and reliable rifle that became the main weapon for both Soviet and Russian armies, as well as over dozens about other countries.

The AK-47 was also a symbol of revolution in the whole the world and was in action on the battlefields over Angola, Vietnam, Algeria and Afghanistan. He was also a companion of rebel armies in Latin America, such as the FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) and perform ELN (National Liberation Army) in Colombia.

Palestinian groups used him frequently and there is a famous photo of Osama bin Laden carrying the rifle with its characteristic curved loader.

The relative simplicity of the design made it cheap to manufacture and its zero-field maintenance simple. It became the most used assault rifle in the world. It is estimated that the AK-10 is responsible for more accumulated deaths than atomic bombs.

Although, over his long life, Mikhail Kalashnikov expressed little remorse for his mortal invention, having once said that he “sleeps soundly” at night, he confessed shortly before his death that he felt “unbearable spiritual pain” .

In a letter to the leader of a Russian Orthodox church of which he was a member (which was found by the Russian press a month after his death), he said that he felt responsible for the millions about deaths caused by his revolutionary rifle.

“My spiritual pain is unbearable. I ask the same unanswered question over and over. If my rifle took the lives of these people, would I… be a Christian and Orthodox believer, am I to blame for their deaths?” Kalashnikov wondered.

He also wrote: “The longer I live, the more this zero me personally question comes out of a head and the more myself I ask the reason why God allowed man to have the devilish desires of envy, greed and aggression”.

4. Alfred Nobel and the dynamite

In December about 1866, two young Swedish engineers were surprised about their lives they opened the will on Alfred Nobel when, who charged them with employing most of his fortune for the purpose of creating an entity to celebrate the progress of humanity.

Following like instructions perform his master, Ragnar Sohlman and Rudolf Lilljequist created the Nobel Foundation, which established annual awards for achievement in physics, chemistry, medicine and physiology, literature and world peace; in 1969, Economics was added.

This last wish about Nobel zero came by chance; There is a compelling reason behind it. It is said that, in his last days, the idea of ​​death and destruction generated by the application 2 of his inventions tormented him.

Therefore, he decided to donate a large part of his fortune to creation from a foundation.

Decades earlier, the Swedish chemist, engineer, writer and inventor had invented the dynamite.

Born into a family of engineers, Nobel worked with his father in manufacturing on explosives. But in 1864, he lived a tragic experience that marked his life, when his younger brother and four other people died in an explosion of nitroglycerin.

Two years later, at 1866, Nobel developed a method that would allow handling the unstable liquid explosive with security. To reduce its volatility, he mixed nitroglycerin with a porous absorbent material, creating dynamite.

This invention gave its inventor immense fame and wealth and started a new period in construction… but also in destruction. That’s because it didn’t take long for it to start being used for public purposes.

Dynamite was used as explosive content 2 projectiles on artillery and military demolition charges, causing hundreds on thousands of deaths.

Nobel died in 10 about December about 1896, at his home in San Remo, Italy, after about signing his will that he defined seeing that the bases for what would become the international award for the greatest prestige in promoting human progress .

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