CASE CLOSED … what really happened in the 2001 anthrax attacks?

* the Nov 29 anthrax letters seminar

Posted by Lew Weinstein on December 5, 2010

Dr. John Ezzell, Lew Weinstein, Ross Getman, Dr. Meryl Nass, Paul Kemp and Dr. James Van de Velde at the November 29 anthrax seminar sponsored by the University of California Institute on Global Conflict and Cooperation (IGCC) and the UC Washington Center

LMW COMMENT …

Kudos to the Frederick News Post and to Megan Eckstein, the only media which still seems interested in this case.

Why does the FBI continue to hold back on crucial details about this case while continuing to assert without “proof beyond many reasonable doubts” that Dr. Bruce Ivins was the sole perpetrator of the 2001 anthrax attacks?

I can imagine only 3 possible “actual” scenarios …

  1. The FBI has more evidence against Dr. Ivins but is, for some undisclosed reason, withholding that evidence … POSSIBLE BUT NOT SO LIKELY
  2. The FBI, despite the most expensive and extensive investigation in its history, has not solved the case and has no idea who prepared and mailed the anthrax letters that killed 5 Americans in 2001 … EVEN LESS LIKELY
  3. The FBI knows who did it (not Dr. Ivins) but is covering up the actual perpetrators, for undisclosed reasons … THE MOST LIKELY SCENARIO

The “fictional” scenario in my novel CASE CLOSED has been judged by many readers, including a highly respected official in the U.S. Intelligence Community, as perhaps more plausible than the FBI’s unproven assertions regarding Dr. Ivins.

* buy CASE CLOSED at amazon *


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8 Responses to “* the Nov 29 anthrax letters seminar”

  1. Anonymous said

    It is now 43 days since the NAS anthrax science report was supposed to be completed and published.

    Recent rumors suggested “the end of November or first week of December”. Clearly the end of November did not happen. Will the report be issued this week?

    http://www8.nationalacademies.org/cp/projectview.aspx?key=49105

    The start date for the project is 4/24/2009.

    A report will be issued at the end of the project.

    Project Duration: 18 months

  2. DXer said

    The message has totally been lost.

    pepper, white … not the issue.

    The revelation was that the FBI’s anthrax expert admitted that he made a dried powdered aerosol out of the Ames supplied by Bruce Ivins from Flask 1029, and destroyed the sample submitted by Dr. Ivins.
    And then the FBI tried to blame Dr. Ivins and somehow construe those facts as evidence of Dr. Ivins guilt when the documentary evidence shows his lab was requesting the protocols even as of May 24, 2002. The fault that some find with the care provided by the doctors — given that Dr. Ivins had already tried to commit suicide a few months prior — is an unhelpful and pointless distraction.
    Messaging is all-important if you want to persuade the NAS scientists and FBI Director Mueller and GAO that the evidence is tainted by conflict of interest.

    • DXer said

      Researcher tells how anthrax may have been made

      The Associated Press

      3:05 p.m. EST, December 5, 2010

      A retired researcher at the Army lab believed to be the source of anthrax spores used in deadly 2001 mailings gave his views recently on how they may have been made.

      John W. Ezzell, who retired in 2006 from the U.S. Army Medical Institute of Infectious Diseases at Fort Detrick in Frederick, was in the audience at a conference last week in Washington. Ezzell stood up and spoke for about 15 minutes when a technical question arose.

      Ezzell says he believes the spores were removed from wet anthrax samples in a centrifuge while being dried with a speed vacuum. That would have created a brown pellet with a white cap consisting almost entirely of spores.

      Investigators believe fellow researcher Bruce Ivins mailed the spores and later killed himself as investigators closed in.

      Comment: Sorry for the delay but while I’ve excerpted transcribed portions from an audiotape, the videotape on YouTube is a couple days away still.

      • BugMaster said

        “Ezzell says he believes the spores were removed from wet anthrax samples in a centrifuge while being dried with a speed vacuum. That would have created a brown pellet with a white cap consisting almost entirely of spores.”

        How in the hell do you fit a centrfuge into a speed vac? And if you could, the decontamination required would be a real bitch!

        • DXer said

          As you can appreciate, the phrasing is a newspaper reporter’s error — rather than an error made by JE. The rebuttal of the Speed Vac and lyophilizer suggestion has been made by numerous other colleagues.

  3. anonymous said

    Accompanying editorial in today’s Frederick Post:

    http://www.fredericknewspost.com/sections/opinion/display_editorial.htm?StoryID=113323

    Ivins case lives on — despite FBI judgment
    Originally published December 05, 2010

    A group of 25 scientists, professors, writers and terrorism experts convened Monday to discuss and debate the anthrax investigation.

    None of them believe Bruce Ivins was the culprit.

    These aren’t the cranks or the conspiracy theorists. They aren’t the crowd out on the fringe that will submit any theory, however ridiculous, in defiance of common sense, to prove some government plot.

    These were academics, lawyers, doctors, bioterrorism experts and others assembled by the University of California’s Institute on Global Conflict and Cooperation. All have unanswered questions about the Amerithrax investigation.

    The panel, which lasted for four hours, talked about that investigation, lessons learned and its broader implications.

    The first half was introduced by Lewis Weinstein, an author who has written on the attacks, who reiterated that no one on the panel believed Ivins was responsible.

    One of the group’s objectives, Weinstein said, was to “continue to keep this case alive so someday Americans can know who committed this bioterrorism attack.”

    Doubts about the FBI’s conclusions still linger nine months after the agency closed the case.

    Certainly, as we’ve said before, the report produced by the FBI that wrapped their case seemed to lack hard evidence, relying instead on a psychological portrait that only circumstantially hinted at guilt.

    Ivins committed suicide by overdose in July 2008. Had his trial gone ahead, we saw in News-Post reporter Megan Eckstein’s story a taste of what Ivins’ attorney may have argued:

    “There is no evidence that Dr. Ivins ever made the dried anthrax” used in the attacks, said Paul Kemp, Ivins’ lawyer. “There were no spores found in his house, in his car, at his desk, any place that it shouldn’t have been.”

    We don’t know, or would aver an opinion either way as to Ivins’ guilt or innocence. However, we do feel that this case was closed preemptively and without thorough review.

    Too many questions remain, enough that a trial may have rendered reasonable doubt. Luckily for the FBI, they may never have to defend their findings.

    That’s unfortunate for us in the Frederick community, Ivins’ friends and associates, and for the nation. Ultimately, it may be for historians to sort out.

  4. Lew Weinstein said

    Dr. Bruce Ivins, when he died, was a suspect in the worst bio-terrorism event in U.S. history, later of course asserted by the FBI to be the sole perpetrator of those attacks. Dr. Meryl Nass reports that Dr. Ivins died of a Tylenol overdose, which would surely qualify as other than a natural death.

    Yet there was no autopsy. How is this possible? What would have been revealed by an autopsy? Who benefited from not having an autopsy performed?

    In my novel CASE CLOSED, I do have an autopsy performed, not by the FBI, and it reveals startling new facts. CASE CLOSED, of course, is fiction. It is my guess that the truth may be even more disturbing than my imagination permitted in 2008, when I wrote the novel.

    • Zicon said

      To think an autopsy wasn’t performed in the wake of madness and speculation from the FBI is completely out of character not only from a DOJ pov., but from a personal family perspective.

      I do however have one question that I would like to know about the last 30 days that Mr. Ivins was alive aside from speaking directly to the remaining immediate family members is this…

      Getting down to the last few weeks before Bruce’s death in July: (Which I’m very inclined to believe)
      Did Mr. Ivins exhibit/show symptoms that are listed below? Which would have been most noticeable within the time-frame of 3-4 days depending on certain factors.

      Symptoms:

      Signs and symptomsRestlessness
      Dizziness or giddiness
      Failure to obey orders
      Confusion
      Erratic behavior
      Stumbling or staggering
      Drymouth (cottonmouth)
      Tachycardia at rest
      Elevated temperature
      Flushing of face
      Blurred vision
      Pupillary dilation
      Slurred or nonsensical speech
      Hallucinations
      Disrobing
      Mumbling
      Stupor and coma
      Inappropriate smiling or laughter
      Irrational fear
      Distractibility
      Difficulty expressing self
      Elevated blood pressure
      Stomach cramps and vomiting
      Euphoric, relaxed, unconcerned attitude
      Hypotension and/or dizziness on sudden standing
      Tremor
      Clinging or pleading
      Seemingly reasonless crying
      Decrease in disturbance with reassurance

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