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    Ethical Issues In Logistics

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    These decisions aren't straightforward. Consider two extreme cases.
    A shadowy company tells you, quite candidly, that it wants you to help them send Stinger anti-aircraft missiles to the so-called Islamic State, and will pay you a fortune in exchange for running the risk of hard time in a Federal prison. 1. Are you even tempted?
    Pfizer Pharmaceuticals and the Gates Foundation want your help in getting critically needed drugs to victims of an epidemic. The epidemic is located in a war-torn corner of Africa. The local militia chieftains, who are the closest thing to a national government, are demanding massive bribes, plus carte blanche to give the drugs only to the people who support them. The UN is helpless.
    2. Assuming you have contacts and assets in Africa, do you assist?
    3. What are the advantages and disadvantages of microbes, vis-à-vis destructive "hardware" such as guns and bombs?

    4. What would be the characteristics of an ideal "weapon bug?" Things to consider:
    a. Vector (i.e., carried by people, animals, in foodstuff, on other goods?)
    b. Lethality
    c. Transmissibility (ease with which it is spread)
    d. Mode of transmission (airborne, direct contact, indirect contact)
    e. Arrival mode (airplane, ship, on foot)
    f. Based upon the above, select an organism. Explain your selection.
    g. Describe the most effective countermeasures.
    h. What precautions, if any, should logistics companies take, in addition to those prescribed by government regulation? Explain.
    5. Discuss how Shipping Company DHL facilitates the passage of its customers' goods through customs, and helps them comply with other trade restrictions.
    6. Discuss the security issues (in addition to simple customs requirements) that the shipping company DHL must consider when transporting customers' goods across international borders.
    7. Do the markets DHL usually serves make these issues major or minor concerns?
    8. Are particular customers or types of goods more problematical than others?

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    Solution Preview

    In accordance with BrainMass standards this is not a hand in ready assignment but is only background help.

    Step 1
    I am not tempted. From the deontological ethical perspective, it is my duty not to transport something that can harm others. Further, from the virtue ethics perspective it is not an act of good character to help a terrorist organization.
    Step 2
    Since I have contacts and assets in Africa, I will assist. The rationale is that these are critically needed drugs to victims of an epidemic and has the potential of saving lives of people. Further, the organizations who are trying to ship these drugs are reputed and ethical. I will use my contacts to avoid paying bribes and ensuring that the drugs reach people who need them.
    Step 3
    The advantages of "microbes" are that I am not shipping microbes but drugs that will help fight microbes. The advantages are that they will save lives, are from a reputed sources, and it is ethical to ship them. The disadvantages are that the local militia may insist on bribes, and give the drugs only to people who support them. The advantage of shipping destructive hardware such as guns and bombs is that they will pay me a fortune. The disadvantages are it is unethical, can lead me to federal jail, and can cause widespread destruction/deaths.
    Step 4
    The ideal weapon bug would be one that could be carried by a large number of vectors. (a) That is transmitted by people, animals, in food stuff, or on packaging of goods. (b) ...

    Solution Summary

    This posting gives you a step-by-step explanation of questions relating to logistics, politics, and security. The response also contains the sources used.