Who would/could use ‘weapons grade’ Anthrax?
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SECRET WARS OF THE CIA - Part 1
JOHN STOCKWELL, former CIA official, 10 October 1987
"I did 13 years in the CIA altogether. … “We're talking about 10 to 20 thousand covert actions [the CIA has performed since 1961]. What I found was that lots and lots of people have been killed in these things.... Some of them are very, very bloody.”
“When the U.S. doesn't like a government, they send the CIA in, with its resources and activists, hiring people, hiring agents, to tear apart the social and economic fabric of the country, as a technique for putting pressure on the government, hoping that they can make the government come to the U.S.'s terms, or the government will collapse altogether and they can engineer a coup d'etat, and have the thing wind up with their own choice of people in power.”
Anthrax Sender May Have Military Past, Daschle Says
Saturday December 8, 2001 1:51 PM ET
“Asked if he believes the source was someone with a military background, Daschle said, ``That's correct.'' Daschle has been in frequent contact with investigators.”
"Nothing is more destructive of democracy or peace and freedom through the rule of law than secret criminal acts by government. The fact, or appearance, of covert action by government agents or their surrogates rots the core of love and respect that is the foundation of any free democratic society. Every true citizen of any nation wants to be able to love her country and still love justice. Corrupt covert actions make this impossible."
– former U.S. Attorney General Ramsey Clark
HRW World Report 1999: Arms - Chemical and Biological Weapons
Chemical and Biological Weapons
At the time of writing, the 1993 Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production, Stockpiling and Use of Chemical Weapons and on Their Destruction (the Chemical Weapons Convention, CWC), an international treaty that came into force in April 1997, had gathered 118 ratifications. The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), the agency set up to monitor the CWC’s implementation, reported that it had carried out more than 250 inspections on the territory of twenty-five States Party to the convention. Eight states declared former or existing chemical weapons production plants (China, France, India, Russia, South Korea, the United Kingdom, the United States, and Japan) and pledged to destroy their stockpiles of chemical agents. Yet the CWC remained crippled by the failure of many states to provide the OPCW with the mandatory data declarations needed for verification of their compliance with the treaty. The United States, which had ratified the treaty—with some difficulty—in April 1997, was one of the notable culprits in this group.
U.S. Recently Produced Anthrax in a Highly Lethal Powder Form
By WILLIAM J. BROAD and JUDITH MILLER The New York Times
Thursday December 13 09:07 AM EST
Government officials have acknowledged that Army scientists in recent years have made anthrax in a powdered form that could be used as a weapon.
Dugway's disclosure was so sketchy that it was impossible to determine how similar the powdered anthrax produced there was to that sent in the anthrax attacks. In addition to drying, other steps involved in producing the most lethal powders include making the particles uniformly small and processing them so they float freely.
Private and federal experts are clashing over how much powdered anthrax Dugway has made. The issue is politically sensitive since some experts say producing large quantities could be seen as violating the global treaty banning germ weapons.
William C. Patrick III, a scientist who made germ weapons for the United States and now consults widely on biological defenses, told a group of American military officers in February 1999 that he taught Dugway personnel the previous spring how to turn wet anthrax into powders, according to a transcript of the session.
The process, Mr. Patrick told officers at Maxwell Air Force Base in Alabama, was not as refined as the one used in the heyday of the government's germ warfare program, but it worked. "We made about a pound of material in little less than a day," he told the officers. "It's a good product."
He did not say what strain of anthrax was used in this work.
But Ms. Nicholson, the Dugway spokeswoman, said workers there "never produced more than a few grams" of powdered anthrax in any given year. There are 454 grams in a pound.
Capitol Hill Anthrax Matches Army's Stocks
Sunday, December 16, 2001; Page A01, Washington Post
“The FBI's investigation into the anthrax attacks is increasingly focusing on whether U.S. government bioweapons research programs, including one conducted by the CIA, may have been the source of deadly anthrax powder sent through the mail, according to sources with knowledge of the probe. The results of the genetic tests strengthen that possibility.”
“The CIA declined to say where its Ames strain material came from.”
Law enforcement sources, however, said the FBI remains extremely interested in the CIA's work with anthrax, with one official calling it the best lead they have at this point. The sources said FBI investigators do not yet know much about the CIA program.
A law enforcement source said the FBI did not initially include the CIA on its list of labs working with anthrax because the agency was not among 91 labs registered with the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to transfer anthrax specimens. But as investigators interviewed workers at those known labs, they learned of the CIA's work, and in the past few weeks posed questions about it to the agency.
CIA Budget [from a CIA web site]
“The CIA assessment was very different from the Pike Committee's. The Pike group's final report concluded that the foreign intelligence budget was three or four times larger than Congress had been told; that money appropriated for the IC was hidden throughout the entire Federal budget; that the total amount of funds expended on intelligence was extremely difficult to determine; and that Congressional and executive scrutiny of the budget ranged between "cursory and nonexistent." The report described the GAO as the auditing arm of Congress, but, when it came to the intelligence agencies, especially the CIA, "it was no arm at all."
All quiet on the anthrax front?
By Andy Oppenheimer, 05 June 2002, Jane's Information Group
Even before 9.11, there was growing concern over the possible use of anthrax as a biological weapon. On 2 October 2001, this fear became reality as anthrax outbreaks, the result of a biological agent delivered through the mail, began to occur in the USA.
Weapons-grade anthrax, usually fatal in its pulmonary (inhalation) form, was removed, refined and eventually posted. It killed five people (not the mail recipients), sickened 17 others, paralysed mail delivery, forced many senators to evacuate their offices for more than two months, terrified the nation and caused some 35,000 more to take prophylactic antibiotics. There have been 15,000 anthrax hoaxes and false threats. The incidents have forced 540 postal facilities to close temporarily and have resulted in 71 arrests.
The anthrax discovered in the letters mailed to two US senators was so refined that it contained 1 trillion spores per gram. It was milled to produce the size most effective in spreading the bacteria: between one and three microns. This size is characteristic of weaponized anthrax made by US defense laboratories.
Anthrax attack bug "identical" to army strain
19:00 09 May 02
NewScientist.com news service
The DNA sequence of the anthrax sent through the US mail in 2001 has been revealed and confirms suspicions that the bacteria originally came from a US military laboratory.
The data released uses codenames for the reference strains against which the attack strain was compared. But New Scientist can reveal that the two reference strains that appear identical to the attack strain most likely originated at the US Army Medical Research Institute for Infectious Diseases at Fort Detrick (USAMRIID), Maryland.
Anthrax attacks: FBI cover-up and New York Times whitewash
By Patrick Martin, 15 May 2002, World Socialist Web Site
A new genetic analysis of the anthrax used in last fall’s terrorist attacks has pinpointed the source as the US government’s own germ warfare program. This finding explodes the pretense, long maintained by the Bush administration and parroted by the media, that little is known in the investigation into the attacks, which killed five people and disrupted the lives of millions.
This cover-up has a clear political motivation: either the perpetrator is an individual with powerful friends in high places in the Bush administration, whose influence is stalling the probe, or the perpetrator is actually a US government agency—…
While the genetic evidence lays out a virtual blueprint for the investigation into the anthrax attacks, there are more accounts of foot-dragging by the US government. ABC News reported April 4 that US military and intelligence agencies have refused to provide the FBI with a full listing of the secret facilities and employees working on anthrax projects.
The Rise of Hitler - Feb. 27, 1933 The Reichstag Burns
“The exact sequence of events will never be known, but Nazi storm troopers under the direction of Göring were also involved in torching the place. They had befriended the arsonist and may have known or even encouraged him to burn the Reichstag that night. …At a cabinet meeting held later in the morning, February 28, Chancellor Hitler demanded an emergency decree to overcome the crisis. He met little resistance from his largely non-Nazi cabinet. That evening, Hitler and Papen went to Hindenburg and the befuddled old man signed the decree "for the Protection of the people and the State."
The USA PATRIOT Act:
CENTER FOR CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS
I. THE USA PATRIOT ACT CONFERS VAST AND UNCHECKED POWERS TO THE EXECUTIVE BRANCH
“To an unprecedented degree, the Act sacrifices our political freedoms in the name of national security and upsets the democratic values that define our nation by consolidating vast new powers in the executive branch of government.”
USA Patriot Act Boosts Government Powers While Cutting Back on Traditional Checks and Balances, An ACLU Legislative Analysis
An ACLU Legislative Analysis
“These information sharing authorizations and mandates effectively put the CIA back in the business of spying on Americans: Once the CIA makes clear the kind of information it seeks, law enforcement agencies can use tools like wiretaps and intelligence searches to provide data to the CIA.”
Posted Nov. 9, 2001
By Kelly Patricia O Meara
Rep. Ron Paul of Texas, one of only three Republican lawmakers to buck the House leadership and the Bush administration to vote against this legislation, is outraged not only by what is contained in the antiterrorism bill but also by the effort to stigmatize opponents. Paul tells Insight, "The insult is to call this a 'patriot bill' and suggest I'm not patriotic because I insisted upon finding out what is in it and voting no. I thought it was undermining the Constitution, so I didn't vote for it — and therefore I'm somehow not a patriot. That's insulting."
Paul confirms rumors circulating in Washington that this sweeping new law, with serious implications for each and every American, was not made available to members of Congress for review before the vote. "It's my understanding the bill wasn't printed before the vote — at least I couldn't get it. They played all kinds of games, kept the House in session all night, and it was a very complicated bill. Maybe a handful of staffers actually read it, but the bill definitely was not available to members before the vote."
Justice Dept. Drafts Sweeping Expansion of Anti-Terrorism Act
Center Publishes Secret Draft of ‘Patriot II’ Legislation
By Charles Lewis and Adam Mayle
(WASHINGTON, Feb. 7, 2003) -- The Bush Administration is preparing a bold, comprehensive sequel to the USA Patriot Act passed in the wake of September 11, 2001, which will give the government broad, sweeping new powers to increase domestic intelligence-gathering, surveillance and law enforcement prerogatives, and simultaneously decrease judicial review and public access to information.
Even in Wartime, Stealth and Democracy Do Not Mix
By Charles Lewis
WASHINGTON, Feb. 12, 2003 -- A few days ago, the Center for Public Integrity obtained a copy of draft legislation that the Bush Administration has quietly prepared as a bold, comprehensive sequel to the USA Patriot Act. This proposed law would give the government breathtaking new powers to further increase domestic intelligence-gathering, surveillance and law enforcement prerogatives, and simultaneously decrease judicial review and public access to information.
So now, with troops amassing on the border of Iraq, we learn that for months the staff of Attorney General John Ashcroft has been secretly planning another tectonic shift in the historic constitutional balance between security and liberty, further encroachments against the hard-earned, legally protected, right-to-know about our government in this country. Was the Bush Administration waiting for the bombs bursting in Baghdad to spring this latest, urgent, national security legislation on the American people and Congress, another drive-by mooting of our customary democratic discourse and deliberative processes? I don’t know, but it is certainly not an unfair question to ask, given recent events.
What seemed to be merely self-serving shenanigans by the latest occupant of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue in the months prior to September 11th actually now appears to have been the dawn’s early light of a wholesale assault on access to information in this country.