Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Did Washington 'test' bioweapons on D.C. war protesters?

Remember when I mentioned that Granite Shadow was operating in DC the same weekend as the protest? This one makes me wonder...I mean, I'm still alive and kicking, though I have had some flu-like symptoms the past few weeks. I'm storing this one in the "possible but probably tinfoil" file...

Did Washington 'test' bioweapons on D.C. war protesters?

It is the most perplexing "non story" of the American terror era: For the first time ever, a half-dozen of the bioweapons air sensors installed around Washington, D.C., all set off alarms. Over a single 24-hour period, each had collected evidence of airborne quantities of the deadly bacteria francisella tularensis.

The bacteria is "one of six biological weapons most likely to be used against the United States," according to the federal government. It causes a deadly disease known as tularemia, which responds to treatment with antibiotics but otherwise kills half of its victims ... many of whom would assume they had common flu until it was too late.

And on the day those six sensors detected the deadly bacteria over a miles-long area of Washington concentrated on the National Mall, the largest anti-war demonstration since the Vietnam era was in progress. The news was dumped on a Friday night a whole week later, and promptly vanished ...

Meanwhile, a quiet nationwide warning by the Centers for Disease Control went out to U.S. doctors, advising them to look for patients with tularemia symptoms.

And in vivid contrast to this morning's fictional terror freakout in Baltimore and the New York subway hysteria of two weeks ago, the Department of Homeland Security expressed no concern for the hundreds of thousands of anti-war demonstrators who may have been infected with a biological weapon.

"It is alarming that health officials ... were only notified six days after the bacteria was first detected," House Government Reform chairman Tom Davis, R-Va., wrote in an Oct. 3 letter to Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff. "Have DHS and CDC analysts been able to determine if the pathogen detected was naturally occurring or the result of a terrorist attack?"

Government officials say the sensors detected a natural event. "There
is no known nexus to terror or criminal behavior," Russ Knocke,
spokesman for the Department of Homeland Security, told the Washington Post.
"We believe this to be environmental."

Tularemia has been developed as a weapon by the U.S. military and is
stockpiled at America's bioweapons labs:

In the 1950s and 1960s, the US military developed weapons that would
disseminate F tularensis aerosols; concurrently, it conducted research to
better understand the pathophysiology of tularemia and to develop
vaccines and antibiotic prophylaxis and treatment regimens. In some studies,
volunteers were infected with F tularensis by direct aerosol delivery
systems and by exposures in an aerosol chamber.
Today, Salon.com revisits the possible bioweapons attack on the
nation's capital. Experts are bewildered by the lack of government concern,
and raise a question that should have sent the American news media into a

Another possibility is that somebody was testing U.S. biological
weapons defenses. How sensitive are the sensors? How quickly and effectively
can the government react?
"The Department of Homeland Security would have to consider the
possibility that it was neither natural nor an attack, but that it was a
testing of the system," says Alan Pearson, a former DHS official, who is now
the biological and chemical weapons director at the Center for Arms
Control and Non-Proliferation, a nonpartisan organization. "Was somebody
trying to see what would happen?"

"Somebody" testing U.S. biological weapons defenses ... on Washington's
Mall, on the very day an estimated 300,000 Americans gathered to
protest the White House's endless war. If somebody within the government was
running an experiment to "see what would happen," were they satisfied
that the news media would all but ignore the event if not directed to
cause hysteria?

The Bangor (Maine) Daily News seems to be the only other publication to
revisit what could have been either the biggest biological terror
attack in U.S. history or a government "drill" using live bioweapons on
citizens who oppose the nation's wars.


Posted by crimnos @ 2:50 PM

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I feel like leaving this country today...

Posted by Blogger Jessica @ 4:44 PM #
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