Nov 5, 2001
Four people have been murdered by deadly anthrax and at least 12 others are suffering from various forms of the disease. It is not yet known who sent the letters which have caused several illnesses and death, but the coward or cowards who did it clearly have no respect for human life.
Scientists do have some information about the kind of anthrax which was used in these deaths, and this points a finger at the ones responsible. The chief of epidemiology for the Centers for Disease Control, Dr. Steve Ostroff, said, “All of them have been basically indistinguishable from each other.” All the anthrax so far identified come from a strain called the Ames strain. It’s named after Ames, Iowa, where the U.S. military carries on a research program to produce biological weapons – including this particular strain of anthrax.
In addition, there is another characteristic which links all these cases: the anthrax was turned into a fine powder and mixed with silica to make the powder stay airborne without clumping up and falling to the ground. Silica has been used in this precise way only in the U.S. weapons program. Nowhere else has it been used.
The anthrax which has killed people through inhalation was not whipped up in someone’s kitchen from ingredients bought at Rite Aid. The terrorist who began this deadly process had to have access to the Ames strain of anthrax and to the kind of sophisticated laboratory facilities which exist at the U.S. biological weapons research facility at Ames. In addition, he had to use silica in the fashion it was used in the U.S. weapons program. Even if someone just copied what was done at Ames, the anthrax he produced was a byproduct of the U.S. military weapons program.
Whoever turns out to be the person who did this, the fact is that he could do what he did only because the U.S. government has long engaged itself to produce anthrax as a weapon.