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

* USAMRIID today produced an “Information Paper” explaining production of gamma-irradiation sterilized dried Ames anthrax spores pre-9/11

Posted by DXer on July 26, 2014

Screen shot 2014-07-25 at 3.57.28 PM




Screen shot 2014-10-26 at 5.36.49 PM


Screen shot 2014-10-26 at 5.36.07 PM


17 Responses to “* USAMRIID today produced an “Information Paper” explaining production of gamma-irradiation sterilized dried Ames anthrax spores pre-9/11”

  1. DXer said

    It is in the public domain, but overlooked, that the DARPA program at USAMRIID in Building 1412 involving the FBI’s expert, John Ezzell — whose lab threw out Ivins’ February 2002 sample — involved both live virulent Ames (from Ivins Flask 1029) and the use of microencapsulated agents and subtilis. Senator Leahy’s anger on these issues is fully justified.


    Donlon, Mildred and Joany Jackman. “DARPA Integrated Chemical and Biological Detection System.” Johns Hopkins APL Technical Digest, September 1999, v. 20, no. 3, p. 320-325.

    Click to access donlon.pdf

    The bio in the linked article explains:

    “Since 1997, Dr. Jackman has been an IPA with the Special Pathogens Branch of the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases. She is involved with the testing of biosensors and their component parts against live biological threat agents as part of the DARPA Biosensor Program.”

    Her work included spent material and microencapsulation with silica.

    “As pointed out, chemical building blocks making up bacteria and viruses can be measured by mass spectrometry. In addition, the broadband mass spectrometer can be used to measure contaminants (spent media, encapsulation materials, and other cofactors of weaponization) that are present in weaponized biological materials.”

    • DXer said

      It is important to understand that in addition to the dried powder mass spec experiments, it is acknowledged that JJ was also doing animal experiments in 1412 with wet aerosols.

      Pat Fellows was an aerosol expert in 1412 who grew lots of virulent Ames. Did she help Joany with the DARPA experiments involving challenging animals with a wet aerosol — with Joany Jackman then getting the mass spec readings from the animal’s breath?

      That raises several questions:

      Where is the missing anthrax made by Dr. Ivins’ lab assistants?
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on January 31, 2011

      We know that transfers to researchers at USAMRIID were not recorded. Documentation of the DARPA experiments at USAMRIID, according to the USAMRIID subpoena response, (incredibly) were not kept. (That violates USAMRIID’s document retention policy). Thus, there were no documents for FBI to use in tracking down the missing Ames.

      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

      Who was Dr. Ivins writing to about the missing sample of Ames strain of anthrax?
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on May 27, 2010

      Was it Patricia Fellows who helped with the warfare decontamination efficacy study whose papers went missing?

      • DXer said

        Doesn’t the reference in July 1999 letter refer to the study at USAMRIID of Tarek Hamouda’s biological decontamination agent, in which he thanked Patricia Fellows for her technical assistance? The article had been revised in June 1999 for publication. News and the abstract perhaps would have been transmitted to others by the July 1999 letter. USAMRIID has told me that they cannot find any papers related to the research described in the 1999 article produced under FOIA by the FBI — even though the research was done at USAMRIID.

        Fellows and Linscott’s civil depositions were shredded by the DOJ and so it is hard to tell.

        But the only peer-reviewed article uploaded by the FBI under FOIA describes the DARPA research for which Dr. Ivins, Dr. Fellows and Dr. Linscott were among those who provided helpful suggestions in the performance of the initial anthrax studies
        Posted by Lew Weinstein on November 14, 2011

        EPA, USAMRIID and University of Michigan Have All Failed To Produce Under FOIA Documents Relating To the 1998 Research By The Former Zawahiri Associate Alongside Bruce Ivins In The Bio-Level 3 At USAMRIID
        Posted on October 31, 2012

        In contrast, I don’t see mention of such a study at the 1999 or 2000 conferences in the UK sponsored by Porton Down and Sfam attended by an infiltrator sent by Dr. Ayman Zawahiri.

        In 1999, Ayman Zawahiri had a scientist named Rauf attending conferences sponsored by Porton Down, UK’s biodefense facility, for the purpose of obtaining virulent anthrax. I obtained the scientist’s handwritten notes reportiing on his efforts are available through the Freedom of Information Act at the published recommendation of David Relman and JB Petro in SCIENCE. Rauf Ahmad is just one of a number of microbiologists who have been captured that have gotten no attention by the media. On November 1, 2001, not long after the anthrax mailings, an article ran in the Chicago Times called “Pakistan’s scientists under scrutiny.” With a dateline Islamabad, Pakistan, the story began:

        “The day after Pakistan handed over Yemeni microbiologist Jamil Qasim Saeed Mohammed to U.S. agents, authorities stepped up their search for other scientists and students who may have maintained links to Osama bin Laden’s Al Qaeda network, Pakistani intelligence sources said this week.”

        Jamil Qasim Saeed Mohammed was a Yemeni microbiology candidate student who had been flown out of the country on a private jet operated by the CIA in late October. He had assisted Malaysian anthrax lab tech Yazid Sufaat in setting up a lab that was intended to manufacture anthrax. Jamil Qasim Saeed Mohammed was indicted along with Boston cab driver Hijazi and others in connection with the earlier Cole bombing.

        Al Qaeda anthrax lab technician Yazid Sufaat was arrested in December 2001 when he tried to sneak back into Malaysia. But rather than noticing, in the Spring 2002, the news hounds began tracking US scientist Steve Hatfill. In hindsight, the FBI Director Mueller’s fixation (according to Task Force investigators like Ed Montooth and Lawrence Alexander) is more understandable given the DARPA-funded work that was being done in Building 1412 at USAMRIID. As Ivins once described it, it was a “black hole” for virulent Ames.

        In October 2002, Jang publication “The News” (in English), in reporting on a raid of a compound of doctors in Lahore, Pakistan let drop a remarkable sentence about the microbiologist who actually played a central role in seeking to obtain the right virulent anthrax strain for Ayman Zawahiri. The article noted, as reported by the CIA’s Foreign Broadcasting Information Service, that “Well-placed sources pointed out the Manawan arrests were also part of the chain of events which started from the arrest of PCSIR’s Pakistan Council of Scientific and Industrial Research microbiologist of Dr. Abdur Rauf and interrogations of Dr. Amer Aziz.”

        In December 2003, a journal called “Science” magazine pictured excerpts from handwritten letters by Dr. Rauf, without naming him, that had been obtained under the Freedom of Information Act. One of the handwritten letters was on the letterhead of the Society for Applied Microbiology (sfam). (Dr. A. Rauf was merely one of hundreds of members of the society, and was not an employee.) It turns out that the scientist had traveled from Pakistan once a year to the UK to attend conferences about anthrax and dangerous pathogens.

        The Sunday at the start of the Organisation of the Dangerous Pathogens meeting in September 2000 was gloomy. Planning had proved even more difficult than the International Conference on anthrax also held at the University of Plymouth, in September 1998. The overseas delegates included a sizable contingent from Russia. Many thorny issues regarding who could attend had needed to be addressed. Among the scientists in attendance was a Dr. A. Rauf. Les Ballie the head of the biodefense technologies group at Porton Down ran the scientific program. Many of the delegates took an evening cruise round Plymouth harbour — the cold kept most from staying out on the deck. Later attendees visited the National Marine Aquarium — with a reception in view of a large tankful of sharks. Addresses included presentations on plagues of antiquity, showing how dangerous infectious diseases had a profound that they changed the course of history. Titles include “Magna pestilencia – Black Breath, Black Rats, Black Death”, “From Flanders to Glanders,” as well as talks on influence, typhoid and cholera. The conference was co-sponsored by DERA, the UK Defence Evaluation and Research Agency.

        Les Ballie of Porton Down gave a presentation titled, “Bacillus anthracis: a bug with attitude! ” He argued that anthrax was a likely pathogen to be used by terrorists. As described at the time by Phil Hanna of University of Michigan Medical School on the sfam webpage, Ballie “presented a comprehensive overview of this model pathogen, describing its unique biology and specialised molecular mechanisms for pathogenesis and high virulence. He went on to describe modern approaches to exploit new bioinformatics for the development of potential medical counter measures to this deadly pathogen.”

        Despite the cold and the sharks, amidst all the camaraderie and bonhomie no one suspected that despite the best efforts, a predator was on board — on a coldly calculated mission to obtain a pathogenic anthrax strain. In at least one 1996 study, the Ames strain had proved especially deadly — and that motivated DARPA’s work with it for biodefense studies in 1997.

        As described by Dr. Peter Turnbull’s Conference report on “the First European Dangerous Pathogens Conference” (held in Winchester, 27-29 September 1999) , the September 1999 conference had been less successful. The lecture theater only averaged about 75 at peak times by his head count. There had been a problem of defining “dangerous pathogen” and a “disappointing representation from important institutions in the world of hazard levels 3 and 4 organisms..” Papers included a summary of plague in Madagascar and another on the the outbreak management of haemorrhagic fevers. Dr Paul Keim of Northern Arizona University presented a paper on multilocus VNTR typing, for example, of Bacillus anthracis and Yersinia pestis. There were than the usual no-show presenters and fill-in speakers. In his report, Dr. Turnbull looked forward to a second, fully international conference in 2000 focused on the ever increasing problems surrounding hazard levels 3 and 4 organisms and aimed at international agreement on the related issues. Dr. Turnbull would later tell the Washington Post that he had given the Ames strain to four private researchers who he declined to name.

        In 1999, a different scientist from Porton Down scientist had reported to sfam members on a conference in Taos, New Mexico in August 1999 that included a talk Tim Read, (TIGR, Rockville, USA) and concerned the whole genome sequencing of the Bacillus anthracis Ames strain. The Ames strain may have been a mystery to many after the Fall 2001 maiilings, but not to motivated sfam members or Ayman Zawahiri.

        The year before, the 3rd International Conference on Anthrax was held at the University of Plymouth on September 7 – 10 1998 and was organized along six themes: The natural ecology and global incidence of anthrax, the detection, identification and classification of B anthracis, structure and function of both spore and vegetative components, the molecular biology of B anthracis, Pathogenesis – the toxins, and the possibility of vaccines. The Conference again was jointly organised by the Society for Applied Microbiology and DERA, CBD Porton Down. At the 1998 conference, Martin Hugh-Jones of LSU, Les Ballie and Peter Turnbull, then of Porton Down, A.M. Friedlander of Ft. Detrick, each coauthored multiple papers available for purchase online. Other papers were submitted by equally familiar names, such as Koehler, Hanna, and Mock.

        The Conference proceedings are available on Video. Did Rauf ever obtain virulent Ames? In any event, there would certainly be a major question that the GAO should focus on answering. What labs did he visit in 1999? Although Khalid Mohammed was allegedly arrested in the home of an elderly bacteriologist, Abdul Qadoos Khan, and a laptop with anthrax spraydrying production documents on it, I’ve never heard it suggested that Dr. Khan had the relevant skills and lab setting to process the product used in the second batch of mailings in the US.

        But imagine, if you will, Ayman in his armchair watching some Porton Down scientist lecture on anthrax. Compare the capability Ayman was showing on gathering intelligence on the Ames strain and the anthrax work at Porton Down and elsewhere compared to the US understanding of Ayman’s program to develop anthrax as a weapon pre-9/11. Compare Ayman’s inquisitiveness with the US media’s total failure to ask questions about the various microbiologists working for Al Qaeda who have been detained.

        It’s as if they took the anthrax mailed to media outlets to heart and are afraid to go to their mailbox.

        “Doctor Arrested for Alleged Links With Al-Qa’ida,” The News (Internet version.www) in English 22 October 2002 (CIA’s FBIS Transcribed Text)

  2. DXer said

    Does the 100 vials, with 98 missing and not accounted for — and no contemporaneous record kept — explain the 100 ML discrepancy in Flask 1029 that observed by this FBI Special Agent?

    3/31/2005 302 Ivins interview statement

    “Following this transaction, the log should have reflected a remaining balance of 988 milliliters of RMR 1029 (i.e., 994 ml – 6 ml = 988 ml). Instead, the log reflects that 888 milliliters were remaining after this transaction – a difference of 100 milliliters. This mathematical error suggests that 100 milliliters of RMR 1029 is unaccounted for. The discrepancy had been discussed with IVINS in two prior interviews, but IVINS was questioned further clarification concerning this entry.

    IVINS said that he never noticed this mathematical error until it was brought to his attention by SSA _______. Moreover, IVINS stated that he never noticed any material missing from RMR 1029 flask, explaining that if 100 milliliters is actually missing from the RMR 1029 flask he does not know what happened to it. IVINS noted that the putative missing 100 millilters of 1029 “now gives me pause,” in light of the information conveyed to him today by the FBI concerning the genetic similarities between RMR 1029 and the anthrax used in the attacks.”

    from DXer … why is there a 100 ml discrepancy in Dr. Ivins RMR-1029 records?
    Posted by Lew Weinstein on February 25, 2010

    • DXer said

      I once wrote:

      “As I recall Dr. Ivins 302 interview, which is online, it was sent on varying dates in mason jars. 7, I think. 6 were combined into the two 500 ml Ehrlenmeyer flasks (you have seen one pictured; one was used up a long time ago). The 7th shipment from Dugway, Dr. Ivins says, was not up to snuff and he set it aside for autoclaving. He did not have a specific recollection that it was autoclaved. Certainly, if there was not documentation, that is extremely notable and it should be a top governmental priority to try to track down the 7th mason jar sent from Dugway. It may not even have been purified by Renocal (after one or two attempts). And so the 7th shipment from Dugway, which was NOT put into the flask is of keen interest given that no traces of renocal were detected.”

      from DXer … why is there a 100 ml discrepancy in Dr. Ivins RMR-1029 records?
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on February 25, 2010

      Perhaps the 7th mason jar sent from Dugway that was not put into 1029 and was not purified by renocal (and thus would have fit the mailed anthrax w/r/t meglumine and diatrozoate. Perhaps it was just diverted provided directly to Ezzell for the JHU-APL / DARPA research.

      Dr. Ezzell was working for the FBI in the Amerithrax investigation. He or his assistant Terry Abshire threw out Ivins’ sample which would have shown the missing Ames to have been the origin of the murder weapon, if not the murder weapon itself. See Amerithrax Investigation Summary.

      The FBI’s Ivins Theory theory was dead on arrival because of the massive conflict of interest. It’s as if the FBI scientist took the gun and threw it into the river.

      IMO, it was really, really wrong for the FBI scientists and prosecutors to not disclose the documents relating to the missing 98 vials. Which of the FBI scientists and prosecutors serving as spokespersons, advocates and book authors on the subject knew about this? Randall Murch? Vahid Majidi? Scott Decker? AUSA Rachel Lieber? AUSA Ken Kohl? Investigator Edward Montooth? Investigator Richard Lambert? Is that why Investigator Lambert wrote him memo to FBI Director Mueller saying that compartmentalization of the investigation might prevent solution of the investigation?

      “Absence of Meglumine and Diatrizoate” in Scientific Approaches Used To Investigate The Anthrax Letters (February 2010)
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on May 10, 2012

      April 26, 2012 FBI Quantico Publication: The Detection of Meglumine and Diatrizoate In No Way Pointed To Bruce Ivins As The Perpetrator Or Involved At All; Meglumine and Diatrizoate were both detected in the USAMRIID RMR 1029 sample — but Meglumine and Diatrizoate were NOT detected in the 2001 letter spore evidence
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on May 9, 2012

      • DXer said

        302 of Bruce Edwards Ivins, 279A-WF-222936-USAMRIID on 3/31/20005 , page 13

        “Because IVINS estimated it would have taken he and [his assistants] approximately one to two years to produce the 1,000 milliiters of concentrated spores using their standard flask fermentation methiod, USAMRIID contracted with Dugway Proving Ground which agreed to produce the spores in batches at Dugway Proving Ground using fermenters and then ship the batches as they were completed to USAMRIID for purification and use.”

        IVINS reported that all seven batches of Ames anthrax sent to USAMRIID by Dugway Proving Ground were shipped in small plastic jars with a screw top which looked like urine specimen cups. … According to IVINS, the first six batches received from Dugway Proving Ground were resuspended and then then Renografin or RenoCal purified, after which they were combined together with USAMRIID-made spores to constitute RMR 1029. The seventh batch of liquid Ames spores received from Dugway Proving Ground, he oberved that it was “dirty,” “clumpy,” and contained too much “vegetative cell debris.” …IVINS believes he made one or two attempts to purify this seventh batch through resuspension, centrifugation and by using Renografin or RenoCal. These purification efforts did not adequately improve the quality of the seventh batch, so IVINS set it aside for autoclaving (i.e., steam sterilization which would destroy the spores). IVINS clarified that he does not actually remember placing the seventh batch in the autoclave.

        iVINS explained that his usual practice in autoclaving materials was to place the item or items in a dishpan and insert the dishpan into the autoclave and shut the door. If the autoclave was fully loaded with other items to be autoclaved, he would run the autoclave immediately. However, if the autoclave was not fully loaded after placing his items in it, the items would set within the autoclave until enough items were added by other persons to fully load the autoclave. The person who added enough items to fill the autoclave would turn on the autoclave.”

        IVINS could not specifically recall whether he telephoned ______________ to advise ______ that the seventh batch of spores was bad. IVINS believes, however, that he did make such a call. IVINS advised that the quality of the seventh batch became less of a concern because he determined that with the six preceding Dguway batches plus what he added from USAMRIID’s own stocks, he had the necessary 1,000 milliliters of concentrated spores even without Dugway’s seventh batch. Accordingly, IVINS advised that Dugway was not asked to replace the bad seventh batch of spores.

        When questioned about the reasonableness of autoclaving a batch of spores that ostensibly cost a lot of money to produce, IVINS explained that USAMRIID’s contract with Dugway required to produce 1,000 milliliters of “useable” Ames anthrax spores. Dugway was not paid on a “per batch” basis, but was compensated on the entirety of the project. Accordingly, USAMRIID was not “charged” for the seventh batch of spores that IVINS autoclaved. Even if USAMRIID had agreed to pay Dugway on a per batch basis, the seventh batch of spores was not “not useable” and therefore did not conform to the terms of the contract and would not have been paid for by USAMRIID. ….”

      • DXer said

        At page 15, the Amerithrax Investigative Summary states the process if the perpetrator only had access to Ames vegetative cells or a small quantity of spores:

        “This drying procedure would have required either the type of laboratory equipment, such as a lyophilizer or speed-vac system, that was present in each of the 15 labs, or considerable time and space to air-dry. Alternatively, if the perpetrator stole only vegetative cells or a small quantity of spores to use as seed stock, not only would the perpetrator have to dry the anthrax, he would also have to subject the anthrax to two separate culturing and washing operations using an incubator and centrifuge.”

        The Amerithrax Investigative Summary describes the critical role played by a lyophilizer in the production of spores:

        “Each of these various devices plays a particular and critical role in the production of Ba spores. …

        Finally, as set forth supra in the Opportunity and Access section, a lyophilizer can be used to dry spores once they have been washed.” (p. 36, n. 25)

    • DXer said

      Who wrote this email to Ivins about how some people had their panties in a bind over some undisclosed issue. Wasn’t it Dr. Ezzell?

      Dr. Ivins committed suicide only after the FBI swabbed him for DNA to test the semen on the panties
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on April 14, 2011

      the FBI had already obtained Dr. Ivins’ DNA from a coffee cup on May 9, 2007. So what was the purpose of the swabbing of DNA in August 2008 to test against the semen on the panties — to mess with him even though, advised by a consulting forensic psychiatrist, they knew he was suicidal?
      Posted on April 6, 2011

      Nightcrawler official movie trailer

  3. DXer said

    Note that two additional pages have now been uploaded to this Information Paper, which had been provided under FOIA in July 2014. My late summer and Fall was filled with many weddings and I was remiss in not having arranged to upload the documents previously.

  4. DXer said

    Remember the so-called “Iraq sample” that Ivins was given and was mislabeled?

    Well, based on a new production of documents — the second page of this Information Paper — it turns out that it was from the DARPA project that involved JHL-APL and USAMRIID.

    In a January 2002 memo, John Ezzel writes:

    “The procedure above is all the [sic] has been found to date. All the B. anthracis dried spores were destroyed over a year ago due to lack of quality assurance documentation. Two vials were retained, one of which was used to compare to the spores from the Senator Daschle and Senator Leahy letters and the second has remained unopened, at the request of the FBI, for future analysis.”

    So 98 vials were (reported) destroyed. 2 were retained. And Ivins was given it by JE (apparently) with a false label – it was I-1.

    The Agar medium used for spore production is provided.

    What is the contemporary evidence that the 98 vials were destroyed rather than put to some unknown use?

    Was the sample that Dr. Ivins says he was told was from Iraq — but wasn’t — actually from the dried aerosol project that had been launched at USAMRIID unbeknownst to Dr. Ivins? Who brought it to him? Where did it come from?
    Posted by Lew Weinstein on December 14, 2011

    GAO: Did Patricia Fellows Ever Find the Missing “National Security” Sample That Dr. Ivins Was (Apparently Falsely) Told Was From Iraq Before Moving On To SRI That Summer? Was There An Emailed Response(s) To Dr. Ivins’ Question? Her Deposition Should Not Be Shredded.
    Posted by Lew Weinstein on December 14, 2011

    GAO: Why are the so-called “Iraq sample” and Battelle discussed under the heading about IVINS’ knowledge of reported proposals to start conducting animal challenges at USAMRIID with dried Ames anthrax powder? What consulting did the DARPA-funded researchers at GMU’s Center for Biodefense who came to share a suite with Ali Al-Timimi do for Battelle in 1999? What work with virulent Ames did SRI in Frederick, MD do for those researchers?
    Posted on December 14, 2011

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense

    • DXer said

      The Memorandum of Agreement with JHU-APL and USAMRIID was signed by the USAMRIID Commander, a Colonel — name redacted — which I believe would have been Dave Franz, who so helpfully paved the way for Dr. Ezzell to speak with me about making the powder out of the irradiated Ames from Flask 1029.

    • DXer said

      Note that the JHU/APL Memorandum of Agreement with DSD-USAMRIID — expressly provides also for the provision of active biological materials to JHU/APL and its subcontractors as required – not just irradiated powder from the 1997 Dugway spores in the 100 vials, with 98 missing. (Ivins Flask 1029, the 1997 Dugway Spores, is thought by the FBI to be the origin of the murder weapon). The FBI has concluded that the mailed anthrax was not taken directly out of Flask 1029 but was grown from something taken out of that Flask 1029 (the Dugway Spores). Yet, It was the same people who made a dried powder out of those spores that threw out Dr. Ivins’ sample — with that then blamed on him and used as evidence against him.

      GAO, despite the presumed good faith of all the parties, this situation IMO constituted an acute of conflict of interest that was not solved by the compartmentalization that the FBI Director, in good faith, sought to impose — dividing the Task Force into AMX1, AMX2 and AMX3.

      Those working on the project, including the USAMRIID employees listed on the enclosure, were two DARPA contractors.

      See enclosure 1 to the USAMRIID response to the February 2002 subpoena.

      When Dr. Ezzell appeared at the UCLA conference and answered our questions about the project, he did not mention that USAMRIID was also required to provide active biological agents as required by JHU/APL and its subcontractors. Then the filmed questioning was called short when a wise senior panel member perceived that John was showing signs of distress. He was taken away by ambulance. So while JE’s courage is to be commended, the documentary evidence is the best guide to a fuller understanding of the project and what the MOA required. The employees and contractors involved can provide a fuller account of events.

    • DXer said

      Dr. Joany Jackman reports that she was an “Independent Public Agent” at USAMRIID — and so of those listed (but whose name is redacted), I believe she would be one of the DARPA contractors rather than a USAMRIID employee as such.

      She came to APL in June 2000. Formerly involved in research examining cell cycle regulation in cancer, she studied the role of infectious disease in those processes at the National Cancer Institute. Dr. Jackman became involved in biological warfare defense as an Independent Public Agent at the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases.

      For a time (at least as of 2004), she then continued her work in developing, improving, and evaluating reagents, devices, and technologies for reducing biological threats to military and civilians.


      Click to access Theodore.pdf

  5. DXer said

    The employees who were involved pre-911 in the production of dry, powdered or dry simulants of Bacillus anthracis (i.e., other Bacillus species) is listed on the second page of the “Information Paper” that USAMRIID produced this July 2014.

    Two of the four were past employees as of January/February 2002.

  6. DXer said

    Dr. John Ezzell explained the work in a filmed conference in DC. From the description above and John’s filmed Q and A, it involved a wet process with the irradiated spores being lyophilized at the very end — resulting in a chunck of spores that he turned over to DARPA.

    Someone would have to ask Dr. E about the similar project done in connection with an August 2000 withdrawal from Flask 1029 to confirm that the details were the same.

    RIID has not given any confirmation that the documents produced yesterday are in fact what was requested — the enclosures provided to the February 2002 response to the subpoena. USG lawyers most definitely did not throw out RIID’s response. In private practice, the response, for example, would be in the lawyer’s “chron” file, readily retrievable by the SJA who reviewed the production.

    The RIID response, for example, on “Anthrax Shipments” was absolutely not the enclosure — it involved shipments in November and December 2001. GAO, of course, should not brook any failure to provide the actual enclosures to the response to the February 2002 subpoena.

    Given I am so appreciative of USMRMC’s FOIA personnel and their extensive good faith efforts continuing (over the course of years), I would just ask that they try again — and urge that those tasked at RIID to find the documents figure out the right person to ask for the enclosures to the subpoena response. (Even though in a lawyer’s file, it would still be subject to production).

    At the end of the day, SJA is responsible for both reviewing the documents and complying with FOIA.

    • DXer said

      As for who can explain the data anomaly, JE can. But I am loathe to contact him, notwithstanding his great helpfulness in the past, given that he was taken away by ambulance during a breat at the conference, just minutes after he had finished speaking. I went next door to a different building to use a restroom and when I returned an ambulance had already come and gone. My wonderful and supremely talented graphic artist similarly was off on an errand.

      So I do not want to intrude further on JE and am hopeful we can get the anomaly resolved just by compliance with FOIA. We wish John well always — documents in any event are perhaps the best means of reconstructing events from 14 years ago.

    • DXer said

      The date anomaly is that this memo refers to spore production on July 30, 1997 whereas the withdrawal from Flask 1029 for the same DARPA research was in August 2000. A distinguished UCLA professor on the panel at the DC conference noticed that JE was experiencing labored breathing — which from my vantage point I hadn’t noticed. And so the Q and A was cut short and we went to break. There was no opportunity to confirm the date of the research he was describing in his filmed presentation.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: