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Why the FBI Cannot Catch the Anthrax Killer

by Steve Moore

 
www.globalresearch.ca   16 April 2003

The URL of this article is: http://globalresearch.ca/articles/MOO304B.html


In the October 28, 2002 issue, Newsweek observed that

"the first anniversary of last fall’s anthrax attacks passed with little notice—and no arrests…despite having taken more than 3,000 suspects into custody worldwide."(p. 32)

Of course, none of those arrested included CIA scientists, like Dr. Steven Hatfill and a dozen other U.S. biological warfare scientists, who remain the prime suspects in the FBI investigation. In fact, in January of 2003, the FBI had 100 agents taking soil and water samples from a land rented by CIA scientist Dr. Steven Hatfill near Frederick, Maryland. The results of the subsequent lab tests are still unknown several months latter. In general, the pace of the investigation has been very slow, public information very scanty.

DR. STEVEN HATFILL: A PRIME SUSPECT

In a previous article entitled "CIA Scientist: a Key Suspect in U.S. Anthrax Attacks," I detailed the circumstantial evidence pointing to Dr. Steven Hatfill’s key role in the anthrax attacks.(1) Now that the FBI is digging for more physical evidence in Hatfill’s former back yard, let me review what I wrote in August, 2002.

Briefly, Hatfill worked at the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute for Infectious Diseases in Frederick, Maryland where a dru strain of anthrax "identical" to that used in the anthrax attacks was developed. Hatfill’s 1999 resume claims he has "working knowledge of wet and dry BW (biological warfare) agents, large-scale production of bacterial, rickettsial and viral pathogens and toxins."(2) Hatfill is one of the very "few" people in the U.S. who knows how to weaponize dry anthrax spores.

My previous article mentioned Hatfill’s track record with the Rhodesian military and the apartheid South African regime, his CIA and U.S. Special Forces connections, his taking of a large piece of lab equipment designed to handle dangerous materials from the Army lab at Frederick, the "strong" reaction of FBI bloodhounds trained to recognize the scent of the decontaminated anthrax envelopes when entering Dr. Hatfill’s apartment and many related facts mentioned in Kristof’s articles in the New York Times and Jan Cienskis’s reports in Canada’s National Post.(3)

ANTHRAX: THE RATIONALE FOR PRE-EMPTIVE STRIKES

In my previous article, I largely emphasized that the anthrax attacks on Democratic Senators were designed to suppress any dissent regarding governmental fore-knowledge of 9/11. I did not, at the time, (August 2002) focus on the role of the anthrax attacks as a justification for "pre-emptive attacks" on Iraq and other countries.

Clearly no anthrax or weapons of mass destruction were found in captured Al Qaida hideouts in Afghanistan or more recently in Iraq. The Washington Post quoted a U.S. Army staff officer as saying "All the searches (for WMD’s in Iraq) have turned up negative…The munitions that have been found have all been conventional." All the sites "highlighted by U.S. intelligence" were free of weapons of mass destruction(4)

SCOTT RITTER AND COLIN POWELL

This is not surprising given the previous statements of Scott Ritter, former UN weapons inspector in Iraq, who argued "My job was to look for concealment, and I never found any evidence of concealment of biological weapons."(5) Ritter knows that Iraq was once able to produce liquid anthrax but argues that after three years it becomes "useless."(6) According to Ritter, for Iraq to have biological weapons today (2002) "They’d have to reconstitute a biological manufacturing base….and we never found any evidence of ongoing research and development or retention" which would make renewed liquid anthrax possible. (7)

No wonder Scott Ritter reacted so strongly to Colin Powell’s famous performance at the UN when he held up a vial of dry power representing dry anthrax. Only the Americans and the Russians have weaponized dry anthrax and here Powell was suggesting that the dry anthrax attack on American’s came from Iraq.(8) Ritter says "Colin Powell holds up a vial of dry power anthrax and he makes allusions to the attack on the United States through letters. That was U.S. government anthrax. It has nothing to do with Iraq."(9)

THE BIG LIE

Nevertheless, the Bush Cabinet used the anthrax attacks as an example of a real threat. Box cutters are, after all, not considered weapons of mass destruction by your average thinking American. Anthrax is another matter. Time Magazine reports that "The attacks on New York City and Washington gave the neoconservatives an opportunity, the logic seemed air-tight: Saddam has WMD; terrorists had attacked America; if Al Qaeda ever got hold of Saddam’s weapons, the future didn’t bear thinking about."(10) And this is the false line of argument that won over a majority of the American people. Although clearly neither the rest of the world nor the UN were convinced of the WMD-anthrax-Saddam-Bin Laden connection

BUSH CABINET DISCUSSES ANTHRAX

When the letter to Senator Dashle’s office was found to contain anthrax, George Tenet, the CIA chief, argued in a Bush war cabinet meeting that "I think it’s Al-Qaeda…I think there’s a state sponsor involved. It’s too well thought out, the powers too well-refined. It might be Iraq, it might be Russia, it might be a renegade scientist." Scooter Libby, Cheney’s Chief of Staff, said, "We’ve got to be careful on what we say." Tenet then agrees, "I’m not going to talk about a state sponsor." Then Cheney has the last word in the only full war cabinet discussion on the anthrax attacks reported by Bob Woodward in Bushes War. Cheney says, "It’s good that we don’t (mention a state sponsor) because we’re not ready to do anything about it."(11)

"Not ready to do anything about it" still exists 18 months latter. The reason is because the state sponsor is the United States of America re sections of the military-industrial-intelligence complex. It is very likely that some members of the Bush Cabinet, including Vice President Cheney, knew or suspected this was the case in that very war cabinet discussion. Hence, the self-imposed ban on any future full war cabinet discussions on the anthrax attacks. The obvious conclusion of the Bush Cabinet is "We’re not going to do anything about it," except, perhaps, to make it impossible for the FBI to catch the CIA linked culprit.

ANTHRAX KILLER IS US DEFENSE INSIDER

Prof. Don Foster, a leading FBI forensic linguistics expert, believes the US anthrax attacks were carried out by a senior scientist working within America’s biological-defense community, someone with "high-ranking military and intelligence connections." Prof. Don Foster has "two suspects" in mind, both of whom, like Dr. Steven Hatfill, worked for the CIA at the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases at Frederick, Maryland. Prof. Foster says the killer is likely to be a highly patriotic individual who wanted to demonstrate that the US was badly prepared for an act of biological terrorism.(12) Prof. Don Foster explained, "to that end his misplaced patriotism has worked. Today millions of government dollars have gone into research and anthrax antibiotics are now available to the public."(13)

In order to zero in on his two prime suspects (one of whom is probably Dr. Steven Hatfill). Prof. Foster has asked for examples of the suspects writing in order to analyze their style and use of language. Prof. Foster believes extensive writing samples are "as unique as DNA and could unveil the perpetrator."(14) Only one problem, the writing samples are not forthcoming. Perplexed, Prof. Foster says, "It’s very frustrating. Ordinarily with the FBI if there’s some document needed—known writings—boom, they’re on my desk the next day. My two suspects both appear to have CIA connections…My anxiety is that the FBI agents assigned to this case are not getting full and complete co-operation from the US military, CIA and witnesses who might have information about this case."(15)

DEFENSE ESTABLISHMENT PRAISE FOR THE ANTHRAX KILLER

The key establishment argument in favor of not catching the anthrax killer is his helpful role in increasing US military/industrial/intelligence complex spending to Cold War levels. Gearing up the US empire for expansion requires such spending from a willing and scared stiff US population. Steven Hatfill’s attorney admits as much in his defense of his client when he says, "He (Hatfill) was totally satisfied that this was an all-out effort to move the (bioterror) program forward."(16) The problem is, of course, that his "all-out effort" killed five innocent American civilians. Hatfill:s former boss agrees with Prof. Foster and Hatfill’s lawyer as well. David Franz, former commander of USAMRIID, said, "I think a lot of good has come from it. From a biological or a medical standpoint, we’ve now five people who have died, but we’ve put about 6 billion in our budget into defending against bio-terrorism."(17)

Read that last quote again. One could not find a clearer statement of the ends justifies the means theory. The CIA/US Army killing of five innocent Americans has led to a 6 billion dollar increased budget designed to defend innocent Americans. So we kill innocent Americans in order to defend innocent Americans. Strange logic. Or maybe, the killings help to enrich the pockets of the military-industrial elite?

WHO PROFITS FROM THE ANTHRAX ATTACKS?

Guess who owns the U.S.’s sole producer of anthrax vaccine? The sole producer is BioPort Corporation in Lansing, Michigan, which is providing 3.4 million doses of anthrax at $20 a dose to the US government. The cost for foreign buyers could reach $100 a dose. As for the owners, let me quote the New York Times: "BioPort was bought in 1998 for nearly 25 million by a groups of private investors including executives who worked at the plant, Fuad El-Hibri, and Admiral William J. Crowe, a former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff."(18)

Funny how, less than a month after BioPort took over the business "Bioport landed an exclusive $29 million contract with the U.S. Department of Defense to manufacture, test, bottle and store the anthrax vaccine."(19) In the next five years, Bioport is expected to sell $60 million worth of anthrax vaccine. The problem was there was no threat of an anthrax attack in 1999. Patrick Eddignton, a former Central Intelligence Agency military analyst, argues "The Pentagon has a $322 million, 10 year program to develop at least three, and perhaps as many as a dozen additional biological warfare vaccines…These have never been tested, and most importantly, no one has provided data to validate the threat."(my underlining) (20)

THE FORCED VACCINATION OF THE ENTIRE US ARMED FORCES

All 2.4 million US soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines were forced to take the anthrax vaccine. Many became sick and several almost died. The common symptoms were thyroid and liver damage, memory loss, bone and joint pain, fevers, dizziness, infected cysts and lesions. Many soldiers left the armed services rather than take an unsafe vaccine when there was no clear threat of an anthrax attack. At the same time, the former leader of all US armed forces, Admiral J. Crowe, former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, owns 13% of BioPort, even though he hasn’t "invested a penny" in the venture according to Crowe’s associate and spokesman Jay Coupe.(21) Apparently, he just gets the orders and the big bucks from the Pentagon. And big bucks are increasingly being invested. The Pentagon invested 15 million dollars to upgrade Crowe’s BioPort plant (22)

THE PROFIT MOTIVE AND THE ANTHRAX ATTACKS

On a strictly business bottom line profit consideration, there was a need for a provable valid threat of an actual anthrax attack, much like the one that happened in September and October of 2001. Clearly, Admiral Crowe and others in the defense establishment have gained financially from the CIA/Army Scientist organized anthrax attacks. Of course, Admiral Crowe is just one example. The whole military/defense/industrial establishment was crying out for more government spending. The problem is you need a credible external enemy to justify the spending. And the damn Soviets just disappeared! In the anthrax case, they went too far in their attempts to manufacture an enemy. They, in a real sense, became the enemy.

"THE CURRENTLY DESIGNATED FALL GUY"

When Doctor Steven Hatfill says he is "the currently designated fall guy" for the anthrax killings, he has a valid point.(23) After all, Hatfill is just the tip of the iceberg. A whole system was in place that needed some kind of "anthrax threat" demonstration. If not Hatfill, then someone else. Every economic system has its demands; individuals are compelled to fulfill them. It certainly is not the first time that a militarized capitalism has placed profit before human lives. But the guys, like Hatfill, who do dirty work don’t always get the profits. Clearly, Hatfill views himself as a patriot and he clearly hasn’t profited from the 6 billion dollar put into his field of work.

As a matter of fact, he got fired from his job at Louisiana State University. It seems Hatfill’s boss at LSU "received an e-mail message from the Justice Department on August 1, 2002 directing the University to ‘cease and desist’ from using Dr. Hatfill on ‘all Department of Justice-funded programs.’"(24) The program of the National Center for Biomedical Research and Training at LSU is largely financed by the Justice Department. The process is called letting go of an asset when he gets too hot. From Hatfill’s point of view, the powers that he served so well are now out to "destroy my life." Most probably the threats to Hatfill will continue as long as he’s in the public limelight. Hatfill needs to "disappear." He is, after all, the tip of an iceberg, which many in power would like to sink beneath the sea before other more senior members of the bio-defense establishment are exposed. There are three methods of disappearing: suicide, murder or a press "black out." The latter is the apparent current choice.

THE PRESS "BLACK OUT"

This would account for the complete press "black out" on the FBI anthrax investigation since January 2003. Almost nothing has appeared in print for nearly four months. As with all U.S. Government CIA/FBI killings of US civilians, whether it be President Kennedy or Martin Luther King Jr., or an unknown postal worker in New Jersey, the outcome of the official investigation is predictable. As Barbara Hatch Rosenberg, the Chair of the Federation of American Scientists Working Group on Biological Weapons, suggests: "The likely outcome for the investigation is continued stalemate, marking time on the off-chance that an unknown informer will turn up with a smoking gun."(23) Are there any "deep throats" out there?


WHAT ARE IMPLICATIONS?

Let’s be clear on what has happened.

American bio-defense experts attack and kill Americans to feed the military-industrial machine. The result is more money for defense in general and bio-defense in particular. The US Government then blames foreign "enemies" for the attack to justify pre-emptive foreign invasions (Iraq). Those who dissent become domestic "enemies" and civil liberties are taken away one by one.

AN EMERGING MILITARY COUP

The election of 2000, the events of September 11th 2001, the CIA sponsored anthrax attacks and the Patriot Acts I and II are clear signals of a gradual and ongoing military coup. Dr. Steven Hatfill has the honor of being the only American to be punished for the so- called "intelligence failures" surrounding 9/11 and the anthrax attacks. No one, not even George Tenet, CIA Chief, has been demoted or suffered a job loss. And no one has gone to jail. Dr. Steven Hatfill may be the only "fall" guy, but he still walks across America as a "free" man.

US DEVELOPS A NEW SECRET BIO-WEAPONS PROGRAM

Since the anthrax attacks, the U.S. bio-weapons program has taken a more ominous turn. A recent Guardian Weekly headlined a front page story called "U.S. Has Secret Bio-Weapons Program." The Guardian says "Scientists on both sides of the Atlantic warned this week that the

United States is developing a new generation of weapons that undermine and possibly violate international treaties on biological and chemical warfare."(26) Two of the projects are research by the Defense Intelligence Agency to genetically engineer a new strain of antibiotic-resistant anthrax and "a programme to produce dried and weaponised anthrax spores, officially for testing U.S. bio-defenses…."(27) Let’s hope there are no more "unofficial" dry anthrax tests of US bio-defenses that endanger American lives.

NO INTERNATIONAL OR DOMESTIC CONTROL OF US MILITARY WMD’S

The UN has not carried out sanctions against the US for manufacturing secret, illegal weapons of mass destruction. Nor has the US welcomed UN inspectors into the grounds of the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute for Infectious Diseases in Frederick, Maryland where the dry anthrax used for the September/October, 2001 attacks originated. In fact anybody checking up on the USAMRIID is likely to get the same treatment as Senator Mary Candrieu, a Louisiana Democratic who visited the Center in April, 2002. Nicholas Kristof reports in the New York Times that "anthrax spores were found in a hallway and administrative area of USAMRIID shortly after her visit."(28) Since then, no Senator or Congressmen have bothered to seriously check out the place. More and more of America has become off limits to democratically elected officials. Quite literally, as this article demonstrates, the military-industrial-intelligence complex can get away with the murder of Americans. Murder done solely for profit and empire.

THE TRUTH OR FACISM?

However, in the end, the truth is always revealed. We now know who set the Reichstag fire. Sooner or latter, the military/intelligence operations behind the anthrax attacks will be revealed. The question is when? Before or long after fascism comes to America?

Timing is important because failure to arrest the anthrax murders will encourage future attacks on the American People. If those governmental agents who killed President Kennedy had been arrested and convicted, Martin Luther King and Malcolm X might still be alive today. Successful political assassinations simply lead to more political assassinations. The same is true for chemical and biological attacks against American civilians.

Less we forget, the first such attack occurred in Waco, Texas, when 74 civilians, including 21 children were murdered by the US Government. Recently, the Globe and Mail reported that "The Federal Bureau of Investigation took charge and finally moved in (on Branch Davidian Church Compound) with the approval of U.S. Attorney General Janet Reno, using the tanks to break down the walls and little-known CS gas to debilitate the compound. The gas, which some consider a clear case of the US government using chemical weaponry against its own people, reacted far more intensely than expected, and may have contributed to the rapid spread of the fire as well."(29) No one was charged for these crimes because it was "official policy" approved by Janet Reno, the Attorney General, and the Clinton Administration. Clearly, if the anthrax killer is really an "unofficial renegade scientist" an arrest is at least a possibility. But given the absence of any arrests for the last 18 months, one might conclude that the anthrax murders were an official policy of an important sector of the US military/industrial complex.

THE SUPREME HYPOCRISY

One the US Government reasons for invading Iraq was Saddam’s use of chemical and biological weapons against his own people. If the US can mobilize 250,000 troops and 60 billion dollars to get Saddam, they can arrest and charge a few CIA/Scientists for the anthrax attacks. Crimes unacceptable in Iraq must also be unacceptable in America. Surely, the US Government does not count the lives of Americans as any less valuable than the lives of the Kurds in Iraq. Time will tell.


FOOTNOTES

  1. Steve Moore "CIA Scientist: A Key Suspect in US Anthrax Attacks" http://www.globalresearch.ca/articlesMOO208A.html
  2. Nicholas D. Kristof, "The Anthrax Files, New York Times, July 12, 2002, editorial page.
  3. Jan Cienski, "Anthrax Probe Puts Spotlight on Researcher" National Post, July 5, 2002, p. A12.
  4. Nicholas Watt "Case for War Undermined by Failure to Find Illegal Arms" Guardian Weekly, April 3-9, 2003, p. 4.
  5. William Rivers Pitt & Scott Ritter, War on Iraq, Context Books, New York, 2002, p. 44.
  6. Ibid, p. 42
  7. Ibid, p. 42-43
  8. Steven Milloy, Adjunct Scholar "Anthrax, A Weapon of Mass Bio-terrorism" CATO Institute Oct. 18, 2001, p. 1.
  9. "Ritter Dismisses Powell Report" People’s Voice, February 15-28, 2003, p. 12.
  10. Timothy J. Burger "Iraq" Time, March 31, 2003, p. 44.
  11. Bob Woodward, Bush at War, Simon & Schuster, New York, 2002 p. 248-249.
  12. "Anthrax Killer is US Defense Insider" BBC News August 18, 2002, http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/2196008.stm
  13. Ibid, p. 2.
  14. Ibid, p. 2.
  15. Ibid, p. 2.
  16. Tom Jackman "Ex-Army Scientist Denies Role in Anthrax Attacks" Washingtonpost.com, August 11, 2002 p. A1
  17. First reported on ABC News, April 4, 2002. Then by Barbara Hatch Rosenberg, Chair of the Federation of American Scientists Working Group on Biological Weapons, "The Anthrax Case: What the FBI Knows" globalresearch.ca, July 10, 2002, p. 4.
  18. Judith Miller "Anthrax Vaccine Maker Calls Finances Shaky" New York Times, August 5, 2002, p. A10.
  19. Howard Rosenberg "Anthrax Cloud’s Silver Lining", ABC News March 12, 1999, p. 1. http://members.tripod.com/tomcolosimo/id35_m.htm
  20. Ibid, p. 2.
  21. Ibid, p. 2
  22. Ibid, p. 2
  23. Steven Hatfill "Text of Steven Hatfill’s Statement", Associated Press, August 11, 2002 p. 3.
  24. William Broad "The Anthrax Inquiry" New York Times, September 6, 2002, p. A13
  25. Op.Cit, Barbara Hatch Rosenberg, p. 5.
  26. Julian Borger "US Has Secret Bio-Weapons Programme" Guardian Weekly, Oct. 31-Nov. 6, 2002, p. 1
  27. Ibid, p. 1.
  28. Nicholas D. Kristof, "Case of Missing Anthrax" New York Times, July 19, 2002, p. A21.
  29. Roy MacGregor, "We’re Waiting for David’s Resurrection" Globe and Mail, April 12, 2003, p. F3.

 Steve Moore is a retired American History Teacher living in British Columbia Copyright Steve Moore 2003.  For fair use only/ pour usage équitable seulement .


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