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

* The scientist who made the large amount of virulent Ames that is missing, who was thanked by the former Zawahiri associate for providing technical assistance re the Ames, is the person who could explain about the rabbits ; but she’s not talking.

Posted by Lew Weinstein on November 9, 2011

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16 Responses to “* The scientist who made the large amount of virulent Ames that is missing, who was thanked by the former Zawahiri associate for providing technical assistance re the Ames, is the person who could explain about the rabbits ; but she’s not talking.”

  1. DXer said

    From a 2014 article on a Bayesian approach:

    “Identification of the organism at the strain level, such as was performed during the Amerithrax investigation where the agent was determined to have been Bacillus anthracis Ames, would presumably decrease the number of publications and
    institutions initially associated with a sample. The Bayesian network targeted at investigative forensics would further reduce the list of those institutions that may have relevant information and yield a quantitative probability measure to guide the investigation.”

    Review of the literature by the FBI’s hazardous materials squad– both a 1999 journal article and numerous patents — should have promptly led to a scientist provided virulent Ames by Bruce Ivins whose friends from Medical School had been recruited by Ayman Zawahiri to jihad. For the FBI to first obtain 16 or whatever pages from Bruce Ivins about that research in Spring 2005 is unfathomable. At the very least, the FBI could have focused on Bruce Ivins and the culture methods used by the visiting scientist. Dr. Ivins let a foreign national from Cairo and Khartoum — taught microbiology by Dr. Ayman’s sister — do research with virulent Ames in the B3 without first undergoing a security review. That should have been flagged as an early and possibly very important lead.

    In Season 2 of the series “Chuck,” the MI6 agent is being interrogated by agents of Fulcrum (rogue CIA). The interrogator asks: What’s Perseus?

    When a federal undercover asked me, I didn’t know (even though an acquaintance worked for Perseus). But now I know and so does Hillary Clinton.

    With Obama not having corrected course on Amerithrax, maybe Mrs. Clinton will represent a fresh start if elected.

    But enough about Perseus. Where’s Orion?

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense
    http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

    • DXer said

      Pandora’s box
      http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/opinion/18-Jul-2014/pandora-s-box

      In Hesiods’ Work and Days, Pandora is the first created woman and she is bequeathed with desirable gifts from the gods. Aphrodite gives her beauty. Apollo instils musical ability. Hermes gives the gift of speech and Athena gives fashion sense. However, Prometheus, the brother of Pandora, steals fire from heaven. Hence, in usual weary manner, woman takes the blame. Zeus sets up Pandora by giving her a lovely jar (pithos) for her wedding and telling her not to open it. This mythical artifact is thought to hold a great treasure. In actuality, it contains all of the evils of the world. Secrets give me headaches. So I have no doubt that Pandora immediately developed one and the rest of the tale is known.

      Pandora opened the box. All of the evils lurking therein escaped to spread across the world. Needless to say, the first created woman was not punished. Zeus knew her curiosity would get the better of her and he knew she would be careless with the gift. He damn sure knew the results. Perhaps the Centres for Disease Control (CDC) should receive a new name. “Pandora’s Box” seems a good fit — within the CDC walls, all of the epidemiological evils of the world. The lid has been lifted twice in recent weeks.

      So the latest revelations beg a few questions. What was the level of fear when the bright lights of science at our bioterror labs realised that both anthrax and H5N1 avian flu virus had been mishandled? Was the greater fear for the public safety? Or was the greater fear that an internal probe would identify an organisational culture of malaise regarding safety? I like to believe that ethical scientists consider public safety the highest priority.

      Blast from the past: shortly after 9/11, the US faced a new hardship. Letters dusted with anthrax killed five and sickened 17 others. This was the worst biological attack in our history. The ensuing investigation, code named “Amerithrax”, unfurled as a diligent and complex investigation. However, I am reminded of the fear that descended on my own medical community. Surgeons at my hospital facility were taking home surgical gloves to open their mail and stockpiling antibiotics. They were completely scared out of their big boy pants.

      Comment:

      I misquoted the question a couple days ago. The question by the fellow in the hallway — I had met him at a social occasion the previous week — was: “Have you ever heard of Perseus?”

      It was the second question asked me when I asked out of the blue: “Are you a federal undercover?”

      The first question was “Do you know _____________.” (I had been privately emailing the faraway scientist almost daily the previous week about Amerithrax).

      The idea is that the person asking the question will have a better sense of whether you are telling the truth on the second question if you answer the first question truthfully.

      http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

  2. DXer said

    In the deposition of Colonel Elliott that arrived today (he headed the Inspector General’s team in November 2001):

    Q. Now, in — in paragraph 2 of your findings you mention “Oversight of contractor aboratories working with hazardous biological materials.” What are you referring to there?
    A. There are biolabs in the public sector that the Department of Defense, Department of the Army has contracted out to do similar work for the Army or for the Department of Defense. And what we’re saying is “Oversight of those contractor laboratories working with hazardous biological materials is primarily limited to the requirements found in the regulation governing the Biodefense Safety Program. And there are no other Army requirements for accountability, inventory management, personnel training/screening of individuals placed on these laboratories.” (p. 83)

  3. DXer said

    Building 1412 , Rm. 212 was where the FBI’s expert made a dried powder out of Ames supplied from RMR 1029 as part of a DARPA-funded program. No sample was submitted initially to the repository and it was later seized. JE’s assistant then went on to Johns-Hopkins. The Ames seized from Building 1412, Rm. 212 had 3 mutations.

  4. DXer said

    Dr. Alibek had received the largest DARPA contract in the field. The outside lab that Dr. Alibek used (under a subcontract) was SRI in Frederick. Ivins’ assistant came to head the B3 lab there in 2002.

    http://www.fredericknewspost.com/news/crime_and_justice/crime/article_ba94ae84-4b8f-589e-af97-f20743937956.html?mode=jqm

  5. DXer said

    FBI Gets Case of Missing Virus at Texas Biolab
    http://abcnews.go.com/Health/fbi-case-missing-guanarito-virus-texas-biolab/story?id=18817744

  6. DXer said

    Would the large amount of Ames made by Patricia Fellows that is missing have Meglumine and Diatrizoate? It was to replenish Flask 1029 but there is no indication that it was every put in Flask 1029. Was it instead given to one of the researchers that numerous patents say were supplied virulent Ames by Bruce Ivins in the DARPA-funded research?

  7. DXer said

    Has anyone noticed that the FBI has not let you talk to — and has shredded the deposition of –Patricia Fellows, who along with Anthony Bassett could describe the rabbit experiment? and point to the records that would exist but have not yet been produced?

  8. DXer said

    Dr. Ivins’ chief accuser — whose civil deposition was apparently shredded by the Department of Justice — was thanked by the former Zawahiri associate supplied virulent Ames by Bruce Ivins for providing technical assistance. What technical assistance did she provide?

  9. DXer said

    One misstep in analysis was that at the time of KSM’s capture in March 2003, the FBI had not yet obtained the 16 pages of research relating to the former Zawahiri associate who was supplied virulent Ames anthrax by Bruce Ivins.

    And so even the reporting call from the dorm room by a subtilis expert to KSM and Dr. Ayman at a Pakistani charity after WTC 1993 reached a dead end.

    It is ridiculous that a name misspelled on the BL-3 log in 1998 at USAMRIID would cause the FBI not to have already obtained the documents relating to the supply of virulent Ames by Bruce Ivins to a former Zawahiri associate. (On the other hand, I only know because someone graciously told me. So I fully appreciate that in any mystery there will be missteps; their good faith and the quality of their work is not disputed).

    Agent Montooth would disagree with my suggestion that the agents submitting the affidavits on the Ivins searches were relatively new to Amerithrax — given that he had years of experience. Well, that’s true. He was on the Task Force at the time they failed to get the documents mentioned above. And he was in charge of the Task Force when the documents relating to the rabbits explaining why Dr. Ivins was in the lab were not mentioned by him or Rachel — and they were withheld by the FBI from production in its selective production of 302s. I don’t think he should be “comfortable” with an Ivins Theory — I think he should be tasked by the GAO with going over each document about the rabbits and giving a sworn, transcribed statement about them and how they bear on his comfort level.

    The FBI should appreciate that there are no secrets.

  10. DXer said

    One of the most repulsive facets of DOJ’s reasoning is that Dr. Ivins admitted to the mailings. Nothing could be further from the truth.

    On January 22, 2007, Dr. Ivins wrote an email:

    “Now the Postal Service people are all over RIID. … It’s very emotionally draining, (…), to know that people think that I could or would be a killer/terrorist. I didn’t mail the spores and didn’t bioweaponize them and I hope that nobody took a strain or some spores that led directly or indirectly to the anthrax mailings.”

    For example, in an email dated March 24, 2007, Dr. Ivins wrote a confidante:

    “IVINS stated that he didn’t have it in him to be a killer or terrorist, and he would never knowingly play any part in anything that dealt with killing or terrorism. He was also bothered by the possibility that something they made or purified or gave to somebody else, either inside or outside of USAMRIID, could have wound up in the wrong hands.”

  11. A lawyer can argue a position in good faith as long as both

    1) God didn’t tell them it was wrong.

    2) God didn’t confirm that God told them it was wrong.

    • DXer said

      Lawyers invented the God myth just to cover themselves.

      • DXer said

        Dr. Alan Zelicoff, the head of Saint Louis University’s Institute in Biosecurity, has serious doubts about the government’s official explanation of Amerithrax

        St. Louis (KSDK)- While no one will forget the horror of the 9/11 attacks, many people have forgotten the deadly anthrax attacks in the days and weeks that followed.
        Dr. Alan Zelicoff has not forgotten. In fact, the head of Saint Louis University’s Institute for Biosecurity has serious doubts about the government’s official explanation in that famous case. The FBI closed the investigation into the anthrax letter attacks in the fall of 2001 that killed five and sickened 17 others. Government scientist Dr. Bruce Ivins took his own life in 2008 and federal investigators believe he acted alone.

        SLU’s Dr. Zelicoff isn’t so sure.

        “I’m skeptical that he could have pulled this off all by himself,” Zelicoff said.

        Zelicoff says obtaining anthrax is one thing, but weaponizing the material would likely require the help of others.

        “The spores are easy to grow but getting them into a powder that will aerosolize into the air very easily is no mean trick,” he says.”It’s not generally something microbiologists do.”

        Scenarios most people would rather not think about are at the heart and soul of SLU’s Institute for Biosecurity. It’s a distance-learning master’s degree program that trains first responders, medical personnel and public health departments to work together in the event of biological warfare or a naturally occurring outbreak.

        “Anybody in public health will tell you it’s only a matter of time before we have another influenza outbreak,” Zelicoff says. “So, if for no other reason, then we’re going to have a naturally occurring outbreak that will be devastating at some point, no one can say when that is, we have to re-bolster our public health infrastructure. And that’s what the institute is really trying to do.”

        SLU’s institute has graduates in prominent positions all over the globe.

        “The head of the Korean CDC’s counter bioterrorism program is a graduate of our program,” Zelicoff said.

        http://www.ksdk.com/news/article/285153/3/SLU-terror-readiness-program-is-world-renown

  12. DXer said

    Source:

    https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2011/01/31/where-is-the-missing-anthrax-made-by-dr-ivins-lab-assistants/

    • DXer said

      Internal memos (obtainable by subpoena) show that authorities don’t really believe that Dr. Ivins grew the spores on those nights. (The NAS estimates that it would take a minimum of 463 plates). They were fully aware of the rabbit studies and the work it entailed but have just tried to hide the 52 rabbits in a hat.

      They say they were surprised that he committed suicide (even though they shouldn’t have been given his prior attempt). Then they tried to cover themselves from being at risk for civil liability for driving him to suicide. They understandably saw no benefit exposing themselves to a civil suit related to Dr. Ivins’ death.

      In any event, the FBI is not required to agree with any one else’s analysis. The FBI, however, is required to comply with FOIA. Obstruction of justice is a chargeable offense.

      The time to take that to heart is 2 p.m. — while it is still a drill.

      Because Amerithrax isn’t training. In training, you just get an F. Out here people get killed.

      The only way to stop this kind of power is to grab it by the tail and gun it in the opposite direction.

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