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

* In the 1980s, the public responded to a Chicago newspaper columnist described [Dr. Ivins’] prank of giving away for free “two pages of single-spaced ‘secret facts'” including the password, pledge, handshake, motto and details of the initiation ceremony.”

Posted by DXer on April 6, 2011




8 Responses to “* In the 1980s, the public responded to a Chicago newspaper columnist described [Dr. Ivins’] prank of giving away for free “two pages of single-spaced ‘secret facts'” including the password, pledge, handshake, motto and details of the initiation ceremony.””

  1. Lew Weinstein said

    Information may be “filtering through the scientific community” but it will take extraordinary courage for scientists to stand up and take a public stand against the FBI’s investigative practices and conclusions. Most research scientists are funded in whole or in large part by the U.S. government through NIH grants and will be reluctant to risk endangering their livelihoods by taking what some may describe as a political stand. Retired scientists no longer dependent on grants should be encouraged to come forward.

    • DXer said

      I keep forgetting that Lew was formerly the head of an organization with lots of research scientists. I think there were even a couple of BL-3s at the organization. We should be very grateful for his hard work in getting the documentary evidence out there. (In addition to rising at dawn, this Harvard MBA shows tremendous patience and wisdom). I was extremely unimpressed that the consulting FBI psychiatrists held a press conference to announce their conclusions and then sought to charge for their taxpayer-funded report — which didn’t even provide the underlying documents and instead was premised on the assertions of the prosecutors. It would have been a simple matter to make the report, funded by taxpayers, available for free. For example, although I am not familiar with, it would have cost nothing to make the full-text available at I sent it around so that the factual premises on which it is based can be understood.

      • DXer said

        And of course it would have cost nothing to email copies to people upon request instead of just emailing a favored few reporters a copy.

  2. DXer said

    An item in the Fraternity Ritualist dated January 18, 1985 notes “the material may have been obtained from an unidentified local source due to discrepancies between that material and the official Book of Ritual.”

    A letter in the Fraternity Ritualist dated March 14, 1985 from an attorney representing KKG at the time notes the apparent absence of legal remedies at the time. (Dr. Ivins told the agents that he had made sure to offer the pages free and not charge for them to avoid copyright issue).

    The letter notes: “Since the identity of the passer out of the ritual in Maryland shows that it is probably a DR. BRUCE IVANS [sic], perhaps a little more information can be discovered about who he is and then a confrontation with him for whatever good it would do.”

    This all counsels against disclosing the secret handshake if you are not properly initiated. It might later be relied upon as probative evidence of multiple murders.

    • DXer said

      I know someone very well fixated on the secrets of the masons (which I think a foolish preoccupation).

      Coincidentally, I used to buy and sell 19th Century Masonic texts and other 19th century books with substantive information. I love old books and always thought the best way to preserve them was to find the perfect home for them. It never occurred to me to look up the secret handshake having myself once had to memorize a bunch of silly ritual myself for a related organization.

      But could someone who dislikes me and is obsessed with insulting the posters on this blog daily persuade the FBI I was a terrorist if there were a masonic temple storage facility near the Princeton mailbox? (It’s not like he hasn’t contacted the FBI and tried).

      In the secret organization of which I was President, we wore black robes and memorized lengthy passages of ritual as part of the initiation of officers. If I sometimes fantasized about members of our sister organization being naked under such black robes, would it be probative evidence of the anthrax mailings? (Truth be told I wouldn’t have been a typical teenager if I didn’t).

      While we can’t fault the FBI for leaving no stone unturned — and the investigators and prosecutors and psychiatrists do exemplary work (judging from their workproduct) — note that they accepted the recommendation by unnamed scientists to drop investigation of the Silicon Signature.

      It seems that if they are going to credit a speculative theory based on events relating to sorority initiation rites, they should go to special efforts to provide support for their claims regarding the double-lining of the “T” in NEXT (in which their entire code theory) hinges… and their assertions regarding the April 2002 sample having been prepared by Dr. Ivins. Their entire case rests on forensic premises that are in no way established by the documents produced to date.

      The forensics on the underlying evidence is more reliable stuff of true crime analysis. Especially, for example, given that they could take fingerprints from the materials submitting the samples.

      The assertions regarding motive are highly speculative — and they are premised on things that in no way are established by the documents produced to date.

      • DXer said

        Take for example the psychiatrists’ theory of motivation for targeting the media:

        As I recall their report, they reason that either Bruce didn’t like Gary the journalist or he was retaliating for a form letter he got in 1987 rejecting an unsolicited idea.

        Have we ever got letters of rejection for submitting an unsolicited idea? Have we ever written Anonymous and told him that Gary the journalist (well known to some of us) could kiss my ass?

        This sort of theory of motivation is too tenuous in a case involving as grave a danger as a possible mass aerosolized use of anthrax.

        …especially in light of the documentary evidence reflecting Ayman Zawahiri’s PLAN to use anthrax against US targets and the fact that previously they targeted DC and NYC media in retaliation for the imprisonment of the blind sheik. See Al Hayat letter bombs.

        • DXer said

          and if that is what the FBI consulting psychiatrist can do with a 1987 form letter rejection from NBC at “30 Rock,” what could he do with the strong feelings engendered by the hilarious “30 Rock” or the strong feelings (positive/negative) caused by the talented Tina Fey, the star of “30 Rock”?

      • anonymous said

        “……….note that they accepted the recommendation by unnamed scientists to drop investigation of the Silicon Signature.”

        That is going to come back to bite them hard. Sweeping 10.77% silicon under the rug is not going to pass the test of time, especially now that information is filtering through to the scientific community.

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