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The Discovery of the Nerve Gasses

The discovery of the “nerve” gasses after World War II by the British is described by Col. Edmund Tilley in a report for CIOS, the Combined Intelligence Objectives Sub-Committee.  Tilley reported, “Sarin is so poisonous that ½ mg. on the mucous membranes causes death.”  According to Tilley, he found the chemist critical to their synthesis, Gerhard Schrader, at home in Wuppertal on April 26-27, 1945, and Schrader was anxious to share what he knew about tabun, sarin, and other fluorophosphonates. By the time he left him in Wuppertal, he had a written synthesis of these compounds.  

Ernest Volwiler, an American, and director of research at Abbott Laboratories, was a German speaking Ph.D. in organic chemistry sent to Germany with a group of eight to follow the troops in to assess the state of the German chemical industry. Volwiler found that German chemical industries had good relationships with their universities, and the leadership was quite involved in manufacturing. The principals were also very nervous when they saw United States interrogators. 

READ "The Discovery of the Nerve Gasses" by Doug Neckers.