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

* Did North Korea provide Al Qaeda/Moro Front and Dr. Ayman Zawahiri anthrax as claimed in 1999 testimony in Egypt by the shura members of the Egyptian Islamic Jihad?

Posted by DXer on July 4, 2015

unnamed (17)

On November 20, 2002, DXer published an essay on the website Cryptome that stated: “Bin Laden purchased anthrax a few years ago from a supplier in North Korea.”

Al Qaeda, Anthrax and Ayman
means, opportunities, motive, and modus operandi

DXer wrote:

“Bin Laden’s group was able to get the anthrax germ from another “factory” in Southeast Asia, which supplied it to the Indonesian-based Islamic Moro Front, a terror group closely associated with bin Laden.

The price for the anthrax spores, al-Najjar said, was $3,685, “plus shipping costs.”

But his argument was lost amidst the claim that it was the Ames strain of anthrax that was used — and that strain originated in a cow in Texas.

Now that we’ve seen that Dugway, for example, mistakenly sent virulent Ames to 78 labs, however, maybe people will take to heart that the fact that it was Ames did not resolve the issue of who sent the Fall 2001 anthrax — and did not exclude Al Qaeda.

One source DXer cited, who had been on the shura council of the Egyptian Islamic Jihad shura (adivisory council) Al-Najjar, claimed in testimony that the anthrax spores had cost $3,685 “plus shipping costs.”

He also has long relied upon another EIJ shura member, Mabruk, to similar effect.  He emphasized the revelations of defense counsel in that trial, Montasser Al-Zayat, that Zawahiri planned to use anthrax against US targets to retaliate for the imprisonment of the blind sheik.

DXer: The Blind Sheik’s Lawyer Montasser Al-Zayat Announced In 1999 That Ayman Zawahiri Would Use Anthrax Against US Targets To Retaliate For Imprisonment Of Senior EIJ Leaders, Most Notably Blind Sheik Abdel-Rahman
Posted by Lew Weinstein on June 3, 2013

Here is an excerpt from DXer’s 2002 essay which contained dozens of hyperlinked sources.

“Means and Opportunity: Al Qaeda’s Biochem Program

Bin Laden purchased anthrax a few years ago from a supplier in North Korea.(6) The Moro Front, an Indonesian radical group associated with Bin Laden, arranged for the purchase, but Bin Laden’s own name was reportedly on the purchase order.(7) Dr. Ayman Zawahiri had a list of 100 US and Israeli targets to use it against.(8) Thus, while the question of the source of the Ames strain used in the Amerithrax mailings is problematic and addressed more fully below, Al Qaeda’s acquisition of anthrax for the purpose of using it as a weapon against the US has been known for a long time. Indeed, Vice President Cheney and his staff knew to take Cipro on 9/11, a full week before the first anthrax letter was mailed.(9)”

DXer cited these sources in support:

“6. Yousef Bodansky, Bin Laden: The Man Who Declared War On America, at 326.

7. “Osama bought a batch for 10G,” The New York Post, October 24, 2001.
“Bin Laden Bought Anthrax, E-Coli and Salmonella, Aide Tells Court,” The Mirror, October 25, 2001.
Simon Reeve, The New Jackals: Ramzi Yousef, Osama Bin Laden and the Future of Terrorism, at 262 (1999).

8. “Did Bin Laden buy bioterror: trial testimony says he did,” San Francisco Chronicle, October 21, 2001.”

Here are excerpts from the newspaper articles he cites discussing the court testimony:

Did bin Laden buy bioterror? / 1999 testimony says he did

Erin McCormick, Lance Williams, Chronicle Staff Writers Published 4:00 am, Sunday, October 21, 2001

Evidence in an Egyptian terrorism trial two years ago included claims that Osama bin Laden already had dangerous biological agents in his arsenal.
Moreover, a ranking terrorist affiliated with bin Laden told a journalist during that trial that the Saudi-born financier of terror and his top aide, Islamic Jihad leader Dr. Ayman al-Zawahiri, had purchased biological and chemical agents and drawn up a list of 100 U.S. and Israeli targets on which to unleash them.
Testimony in that trial and other court proceedings in the United States have told of bin Laden and his operatives negotiating to buy such deadly materials as anthrax, the Ebola virus and bomb-grade uranium for creating weapons of mass destruction.

Osama bought a batch for 10G


October 24, 2001 — WASHINGTON – Terror master Osama bin Laden bought samples of anthrax by mail from shady laboratories in Eastern Europe and Asia for as little as $10,000, a former follower has told authorities in Egypt.
The astonishing claim of how easily – and cheaply – the world’s most wanted terrorist was able to acquire anthrax and other deadly germ agents was made in a 143-page confession of former extremist Ahmad Ibrahim al-Najjar at a recent trial of more than 100 members of the Egyptian Islamic Jihad.
Al-Najjar, serving a life sentence in Egypt, was among several Islamic Jihad operatives arrested in Albania in 1999 and brought home to Egypt to face trial for a series of attempts to destabilize the pro-Western government of President Hosni Mubarak.
According to translated accounts of his testimony obtained by The Post, al-Najjar told authorities there was nothing cloak-and-dagger about bin Laden’s transactions involving deadly biological agents.
“Factories” in the Czech Republic and elsewhere in Eastern Europe supplied deadly bacteria, including e-coli and salmonella, by mail without checking the identities of the purchasers as long as bin Laden’s agents paid $7,500 up front, al-Najjar said.
Bin Laden’s group was able to get the anthrax germ from another “factory” in Southeast Asia, which supplied it to the Indonesian-based Islamic Moro Front, a terror group closely associated with bin Laden.
The price for the anthrax spores, al-Najjar said, was $3,685, “plus shipping costs.”
U.S. officials say they don’t yet know whether bin Laden is responsible for the anthrax scare gripping the nation, although President Bush and other senior officials say they are suspicious.
Bin Laden is known to have contacts with Iraqi officials and mafia groups in former Soviet republics – nations that have extensive chemical-and biological-weapons programs and that are known to have experimented with anthrax.


During the 1999 Egyptian trial of 107 suspected terrorists, Mabruk talked to a reporter from the Arabic-language newspaper al-Hayat about al Qaeda’s “biological and chemical weapons.”
“He said to me that al-Zawahiri and bin Laden (had purchased) the weapons from countries in Eastern Europe,” reporter Mohammed Salah told The Chronicle in a phone interview from Cairo.
Mabruk spoke of bin Laden and al-Zawahiri having a list of 100 targets worldwide, all related to the United States or Israel, Salah reported.
“This was a big scoop in my opinion, but the Americans didn’t read this article,” Salah said. “They come now to try to understand what happened (in court) two years ago.”
During the trial, Egyptian military investigators told the court that defendants had reported the purchase of dangerous biological agents by bin Laden associates, through the mail, for as little as $3,865, “shipping included.”
Egyptian government documents detailing the confessions, described in the Arabic press, said that factories in Eastern Europe offered to sell the viruses that cause Ebola and salmonella poisoning to bin Laden’s associates — without asking what the group planned to do with them.
The accused terrorists also claimed to have made agreements to buy “samples of anthrax” from a factory in Southeast Asia and a culture of the paralyzing botulinum bacteria from a lab in the Czech Republic for $7,500.

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

124 Responses to “* Did North Korea provide Al Qaeda/Moro Front and Dr. Ayman Zawahiri anthrax as claimed in 1999 testimony in Egypt by the shura members of the Egyptian Islamic Jihad?”

  1. DXer said

    The NG’s fictionalized yarn about the Amerithrax investigation of Bruce Ivins — to the extent details are credited — exposes how specious the FBI profiler’s analysis was. The tv profiler relies on an email represented to be September 26. She emphasizes to her muscled colleague, “We didn’t find the first anthrax letters until 3 weeks later.” Actually, Bruce Ivins very likely was just parroting the language that had appeared, for example, that day in the Washington Times column about Al Qaeda likely having anthrax. Heck, the New York Time had done a story about cropduster inquiries and anthrax on September 19, the week before. She might have read up a bit about Al Qaeda and anthrax if she was going to profile the case. Heck, any good intelligence analyst or profiler knew that Al Qaeda had announced that Ayman Zawahiri was going to use anthrax to retaliate against the imprisonment of the Blind Sheikh and imprisoned EIJ/Vanguard of Conquest leaders. Given that anthrax was Ivins’ field was anthrax, it would be surprising if he did not pay attention to such news. The profiler gets an F for her assessment of the September 26 email.

  2. DXer said

    North Korea’s Less-Known Military Threat: Biological Weapons

    Military analysts are increasingly concerned about the nation’s “advanced, underestimated and highly lethal” bioweapons program.

    By Emily Baumgaertner and William J. Broad
    • Jan. 15, 2019
    WASHINGTON — Pound for pound, the deadliest arms of all time are not nuclear but biological. A single gallon of anthrax, if suitably distributed, could end human life on Earth.


    In unclassified reports, the Trump administration has alluded to the North’s bioweapons program in vague terms. President Trump did not broach the subject of biological weapons during his meeting with Mr. Kim in Singapore, according to American officials.

    The lack of detail and urgency is all the more surprising given that John R. Bolton, Mr. Trump’s national security adviser, has long described it as a regional and even a global threat.

    In 2002, as under secretary of state for arms control and international security in the George W. Bush administration, Mr. Bolton declared that “North Korea has one of the most robust offensive bioweapons programs on Earth.”

    Last century, most nations that made biological arms gave them up as impractical. Capricious winds could carry deadly agents back on users, infecting troops and citizens. The United States renounced its arsenal in 1969.


    South Korean military white papers have identified at least ten facilities in the North that could be involved in the research and production of more than a dozen biological agents, including those that cause the plague and hemorrhagic fevers.

    We’ll bring you stories that capture the wonders of the human body, nature and the cosmos.

    United States intelligence officials have not publicly endorsed those findings. But many experts say the technological hurdles to such advances have collapsed. The North, for instance, has received advanced microbiology training from institutions in Asia and Europe.

    Bruce Bennett, a defense researcher at the RAND Corporation, said defectors from the North have described witnessing the testing of biological agents on political prisoners.

    Several North Korean military defectors have tested positive for smallpox antibodies, suggesting they were either exposed to the deadly virus or vaccinated against it, according to a report by Harvard Kennedy School’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs.


    Western concerns about the North’s program jumped in June 2015, after Mr. Kim posed in a white lab coat alongside military officers and scientists in a modern-looking pesticide facility called the Bio-Technical Institute, his arms outspread toward shiny lab equipment.

    The plant allegedly produced pesticides. The photos showed enormous fermenters for growing microbes, as well as spray dryers that can turn bacterial spores into a powder fine enough to be inhaled. Mr. Kim was beaming.

    Melissa Hanham, a scholar who first identified the site’s threatening potential, said equipment model numbers showed that the North had obtained the machinery by evading sanctions — laundering money, creating front companies or bribing people to buy it on the black market.

    She said the evidence suggests the North succeeded in building a seemingly harmless agricultural plant that could be repurposed within weeks to produce dried anthrax spores.

    Arms-control analysts say intrusive inspections are needed to see whether a facility is intended for peaceful aims or something else.


    Americans felt the sting of bioweapons in 2001 when a teaspoon of anthrax powder, dispatched in a handful of envelopes, killed five people, sickened 17 more and set off a nationwide panic. The spores shut down Congressional offices, the Supreme Court and much of the postal system, and cost about $320 million to clean up.

    Federal budgets for biodefense soared after the attacks but have declined in recent years.

    “The level of resources going against this is pitiful,” said Mr. Weber, the former Pentagon official. “We are back into complacency.”


    “If you’re a country that feels generally outclassed in conventional weapons,” Ms. Hanham said, a lethal microbe such as anthrax might seem like a good way “to create an outsized amount of damage.”

    Such an attack would maximize casualties, she said, while terrorizing the uninfected population. For North Korea, Ms. Hanham added, “That would be the twofold goal.”

  3. DXer said

    Two biodefense questions. First, can you discuss why HHS was the proper home for biodefense rather than the Department of Homeland Security, which has a more traditional homeland security in the title? And then, secondly, you mentioned the threats. The State Department had previously stated publicly that China, Iran, North Korea, Russia, and Syria had not been complying with the Biological Weapons Convention. Is that still the assessment of the government? And then, why has the biological issue not been the subject of the President’s negotiations with Kim’s —

    AMBASSADOR BOLTON: Well, on the second point, I can tell you we have said we want the elimination of all North Korea’s weapons of mass destruction programs, whatever they might be.

    And to go to your first question — and Alex will probably want to expand on it — what we try and do when we create, across the board, national security strategies is pick the organizational structure that we think is most likely to achieve the objectives.

    So in this case, we felt the evidence was overwhelming that we wanted a lead agency that would have the principal responsibility but would also be coordinating operational aspects with other departments and agencies that were involved. And the Department of Homeland Security is involved here.

    But the overwhelming bulk of the scientific and technical expertise in the government on the range of biological threats we face — including, as the Secretary said, epidemiological threats, not just biological weapons attack — is in HHS. So every consideration that we could think of pointed to putting the lead responsibility in HHS, and that’s what we did.

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

  4. DXer said

    The nine steps required to really disarm North Korea
    By William J. Broad, David E. Sanger and Troy Griggs – The New York Times

    Destroy Germ Weapons

    Eliminate anthrax and other deadly biological weapons, under constant inspection.

    Biological weapons can be more destructive than nuclear arms. A single gallon of concentrated anthrax is said to have enough spores to kill every person on Earth. The challenge is how to deliver the living weapons. The anthrax attacks of 2001 relied on letters, killing five people, sickening 17 others and frightening the nation.

    North Korea is suspected of having a large complex for making germ weapons. The problem is learning its true dimensions, and verifying its dismantlement. While nuclear and missile tests advertise their developmental strides openly, the production and testing of deadly pathogens can be done behind closed doors.

    Moreover, experts argue that the gear for producing germ weapons is often identical or similar to that of medicine and agriculture, making it extremely hard if not impossible for outsiders to verify that germ-weapon work has ended. The Trump administration’s stance is unknown other than it wants the North to end all work on biological weapons.

  5. DXer said

    North Korean bio-weapons are real, but is the risk overstated?

    Analysts say that North Korea may have balked at mass weaponization of lethal agents due to reliability issues and risks; its program faces multiple challenges, but the nightmare threat remains

    South Korea’s MoND said in an April 2012 report that 50% of the North’s long-range missiles and 30% of its artillery had been adapted to carry either biological or chemical weapons; the weapons could also be deployed via rocket launchers, mortars and field artillery. It concluded that agents for botulism, smallpox and anthrax were mostly likely to be weaponized.


    Assessments by Global Security indicate that aerosol dissemination by pressurized gases, the method used by a now-redundant US program, would be the easiest way to use bio-weapons. Aerosols deployed from aircraft can achieve a dissemination efficiency of up to 60%, compared with less than 1.5% for biological agents delivered through explosive devices.

    An October report by Harvard Kennedy School’s Belfer Center for Science and International Studies suggested that Pyongyang might deploy biological weapons from aerosols mounted on drones. A number of unarmed drones have already been found, crashed, in South Korea.

    The Belfer Center also floated the ultimate security nightmare: the use of human vectors.

    “North Korea has 200,000 special forces; even a handful of those special forces armed with BW [biological weapons] would be enough to devastate South Korea,” the report said, listing water and foodstuffs as likely targets.

    Spraying a water reservoir could kill tens of thousands if it could be targeted efficiently. The assailant would probably die too, but the Belfer Center noted this was unlikely to bother a society with a history of “prioritizing military objectives over human lives.”

  6. DXer said

  7. DXer said

    Assessing North Korea’s Chemical and Biological
    Weapons Capabilities and Prioritizing Countermeasures
    John V. Parachini, January 17, 2018

    Click to access RAND_CT486.pdf

  8. DXer said

    S. Korea, Japan had best stock up on antibiotics to treat anthrax

    Asia Times-Dec 20, 2017
    Ivins was part of the FBI team that investigated the anthrax sent in letters to the Senate’s Democratic leadership in the wake of 9/11. The FBI had some four suspects at Ft. Detrick, but in the end the investigation failed and no one at Ft. Detrick was proven to have mailed anthrax letters to members of …

  9. DXer said

    Former FBI Director Comey now at the conference sponsored by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Fordham University. It is the Seventh International Conference on Cyber Security. ICCS is held every eighteen months. “It is an unparalleled opportunity for global leaders in cyberthreat analysis, operations, research, and law enforcement to coordinate their efforts to create a more secure world.” I think it is Moore’s law that saws that knowledge is doubling every 18 months, and so I’m surprised that the conference is not held more often. Edward Lucas’s CYBERPHOBIA is an excellent and very readable introduction to the topic. Comey may want to consider seeing WICKED if he hasn’t already.

    With the implications of Mueller adding the cyber law fellow (who handled Guccifer) to the prosecution team last November, a possible Chinese decision not to buy US treasuries and the possibility of a resulting crash of the US stock market, cyber war with North Korea, and the indictment of a sitting US President’s family member … 2018 may be one to remember.

  10. DXer said

    The US is reportedly considering a ‘bloody nose’ attack to humiliate North Korea — here’s how it could go down


    As for anthrax on Koreans ICBM, I just don’t at all imagine what the point of that would be. It seems that there are far easier and more reliable ways to deliver anthrax, including comparably sized amounts.

    As someone who has has family members serve in the DMZ, I personally hope that they avoid any provocative action.

    What President Trump might consider doing is urge the importance of physical exercise and healthful eating and living — and he could encourage our Olympic Team to go to the Winter Olympics and do their very best against the North Koreans, assuming they follow through with the past day’s decision to send athletes. (I believe that the President urging our athletes to “humiliate” the North Koreans would be bad sportsmanship, but certainly we can could cheer the US and others who have been subject to NKs threats to victory).

    As the anticipated/feared indictment his son-in-law and.or son draws closer — and the resulting immense personal stress that will place on the President — he too should focus on healthful living.

    I don’t envy the North Korean athletes, who will face a tempting opportunity to defect and will expose them to possible recruitment attempts.

  11. DXer said

    Ralph Peters


    If North Korea’s nukes don’t scare you, take a look at its biological weapons

    By Ralph Peters

    December 29, 2017

    The anthrax resistance in that North Korean’s system came either because he was inoculated as an elite guard near a research facility, or because he’d been exposed to anthrax and built up resistance. Neither possibility is good news.


    When the Soviet Union collapsed, researchers looked for new homes. Some, undoubtedly, turned up in North Korea.


    Scientists in programs such as North Korea’s strive to make it even more durable and deadly. [Editor’s note: For example, with the use of a silanizing solution in the growth medium; that’s why it is important to solve the Fall 2001 anthrax attacks. That was the signature observe].

    We can deal with North Korea’s nukes, one way or another, but we need to take biological weapons — there and elsewhere — far more seriously than we do. Kim Jong-un’s riding with all Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, not just the one glowing with radioactivity.

    Ralph Peters is Fox News’ strategic analyst.

    Comment: What if he just ate contaminated meat in his village? I don’t doubt that North Korea has biological weapons. Just sayin’.

  12. DXer said

    SHOCK North Korea WARNING: Russia helping Kim weaponise ANTHRAX amid WW3 threat

    NORTH KOREA is being assisted by Russia in its effort to create a deadly biological weapon using Anthrax, according to retired Lt Col Ralph Peters.

    “He even went as far to claim Russian scientists could be assisting the hermit nation in its efforts.

    Lt Col Peters told Fox: “They are probably profiting from the collapse of the Soviet Union, after which there is a lot of Soviet biological scientists looking for work.” ”

    Comment: Look how the headline departs from the actual comment. Lt Col Peters merely said former Russian scientists could be assisting North Korea. Yet, backing up, there is no evidence even of that.

    Have people forgot what evidence looks like? Is a plausible theory all that is needed if you are the one in a position to be heard?

    Sworn testimony. Invoices relating to the purchase of pathogens. Now that’s evidence worth exploring.

  13. DXer said

    Speaking to Fox News, he said: “They wouldn’t put Anthrax in an ICMB because the method of delivery wouldn’t be that effective but nuclear weapons they’re within maybe 2 months.

    “Now it’s been disclosed that the CIA gave President Trump an assessment that you know within that time frame they’ll be able to hit the US with a nuke.”

    Chang said the only thing holding Kim Jong-un’s regime back is heat shielding, which protects the missile on the way down.

  14. DXer said

    The medical tests of North Korean defectors aren’t necessarily proof of WMDs

    By Greg Walters Dec 27, 2017

    Separately, an unnamed South Korean intelligence officer told the country’s Channel A television that a North Korean soldier who defected this year is apparently immune to anthrax, a deadly animal disease that could be deployed as an agent of biological warfare.

    “Anthrax antibodies have been found in the North Korean defector who has escaped this year,” the officer said. The report went on to cite a defense analyst named Shin Jong Woo saying that the anthrax vaccine may be given to specialists working on the North’s biological weapons program.

    Of course, humans can also get sick with anthrax if they come in contact with infected barnyard animals, according to the CDC — a possibility that leaves intelligence analysts in the awkward position of needing to determine whether the defector was, in fact, a weapons specialist, or maybe just grew up on a farm.

    “It’s important to recognize the limits of our own knowledge,” Thomas Karako, a weapons expert at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, told VICE News. “But what we do know is that the horrors of North Korea are legion.”

    Indeed, medical examinations of North Korean escapees have long shown the Hermit Kingdom to be rife with poverty and disease.

    A soldier who bolted across the border to South Korea in November was later found to have massive, 10-inch-long white parasites in his bowels, which the surgeon who removed them described as “thick, big, long and very, very hard.”

    A 2015 study of defectors found that 7 out of 17 subjects had parasites in their stool. One potential cause for that: North Korean farmers may be using human feces as crop fertilizer in a country with a leaky water system that’s sorely in need of maintenance.

    Comment: What is missing from all the reports is whether the defector was asked whether he received a vaccination for anthrax.

  15. DXer said

    North Korea’s other weapons: Expert warns nukes aren’t biggest concern

    By Alex Diaz | Fox News
    “They have a large stockpile of chemical weapons, but the one that gets the least attention, and that I worry most about, is their biological weapons program,” said Andrew Weber, the former U.S. Assistant Secretary of Defense for Nuclear Chemical and Biological Defense Programs from 2009-2014.

    When it comes to biological weapons, Weber said, just a tiny amount can bring incredibly lethal results. “Ounces or pounds would be enough. You can have millions of lethal doses of anthrax in a several-pound quantity… With smallpox, maybe just a few grams.”

    One of the biggest concerns when it comes to chemical or biological warfare – a concern that Weber and the White House seem to share – is the fact that these incredibly lethal attacks can easily be “cloaked in deniability,” and difficult to trace back to the perpetrator. Weber pointed out that “it takes just one or two people to covertly deliver a strategic biological weapons attack.”

    North Korea has been accused of using chemical weapons in an apparent assassination earlier this year, one that unfolded beyond its borders. Kim Jong Nam, the half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, was killed with the use of the nerve agent VX in the Kuala Lumpur International Airport last February 13.

    Adding to the difficulty in tracking the use of weapons like these, Weber said, is the fact that it’s usually too late when people realize they’ve been exposed. Weber added that “to release anthrax into the atmosphere, you’d likely go undetected and it would be a week or so before people start displaying symptoms.”

    During the 2001 anthrax attacks in the U.S., Weber noted that people were mailed envelopes filled with the deadly substance – along with a letter telling them that they had been infected, and should seek medical attention. Weber said those warning letters are what allowed the government to quickly distribute antibiotics to thousands of Americans, likely saving lives in the process. Without them, the outcome could have been very different.

    “If you don’t know about an attack until people start showing up sick, it’s very difficult to treat the inhalation of anthrax,” Weber said. He added, “if they can launch a VX attack in Kuala Lumpur, they can launch an anthrax attack in Los Angeles.”


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

  16. DXer said

    Does North Korea have Anthrax? New reports suggest yes

    Multiple reports suggest there’s more evidence to believe that Pyongyang possesses Anthrax

    Nicole Karlis12.27.2017•4:32 PM

    The U.S. has had its own Anthrax bioterrorism scares. In 2001, one week after the 9/11 attacks, anonymous letters concealing Anthrax spores were sent to congressional offices and media companies. Five people died from inhaling the spores.

  17. DXer said

    Note that former lead Amerithrax investigator Richard Lambert’s memorandum to former FBI Director Mueller — being sought under FOIA and now the subject of federal court litigation — addresses this 1999 testimony about the purchase of anthrax from Korea. The memo, I surmise, states that Korea’s possession of Ames (or not) was a rock that they were not able to turn over. They needed voluntary cooperation abroad — and did not even have subpoena power they relied upon (and speciously assumed effective) stateside. The FBI did know, however, of the documentary evidence corroborating Al Qaeda’s early purchase of pathogens, including anthrax.


    CBS/AP December 26, 2017
    Got tips in unsolved art heist? Deadline looms for $10M reward

    “That’s a big disappointment to the museum and the FBI, which still hasn’t managed to solve the largest art heist in U.S. history. Both had hoped the enhanced reward would spur a flurry of fresh leads. Instead, it’s been like watching paint dry.”


    Bobby Guarente trusted the one daughter (J.) above all others, including his wife Elene. Her Facebook posts suggesting that what was involved was a negotiation among three Families, can be understood in the context of her attempt to return the paintings in late 2004 or early 2005. But she’s afraid of being prosecuted for the destruction of key paintings; afraid of David Turner (an imprisoned baddie involved in the theft); and afraid of prosecution of her daughter for being in possession of stolen property — not necessarily in that order. Tony, the museum security director, was pals with Elene when maybe the FBI should have run an undercover and sting on her and her daughter rather than Bobby Gentile. Or at the same time. (It could have something simple). I still remember fondly when Tony, the security director, told me I should leave Maine because I was making Elene nervous. I would have thought that was the point; at the time apparently he didn’t know she had attempted to return the paintings in late 2004 or early 2005, using the front of a Boston lawyer, BG. A foot in the door might be Earle Berghman, who joined the pair (Elene and the daughter) in attempting to return the paintings. Indeed, it was the Boston lawyer who recruited the daughter’s participation. At last report, Earle alternated his time between a Utica homeless shelter and Mohawk. I haven’t bothered because it is cold outside.

  18. DXer said

    How serious is the North Korean anthrax threat?

    By James Griffiths, CNN

    Updated 5:03 AM ET, Wed December 27, 2017


    Adding to these concerns was a report in the Korean media alleging one of the four North Korean soldiers who defected in 2017 was found to have antibodies to the biological weapon in his system, suggesting he was either vaccinated against anthrax or exposed to it at some point.

    South Korea’s National Intelligence Service told CNN it could not confirm that report. The Defense Ministry said it also could not confirm the report, adding that none of the four military defectors are believed to have worked in North Korea’s biochemical warfare unit.


    “Missiles, drones, airplanes, sprayers, and human vectors are potential means of (biological weapons) delivery,” the Harvard report said, though it added biological agents are “difficult to keep intact on missile payloads due to heat and changing conditions that can degrade the agent,” making far-range delivery unlikely.

    Manual delivery is perhaps the most difficult to guard against, the report said: “North Korea has 200,000 special forces; even a handful of those special forces armed with (biological weapons) would be enough to devastate South Korea.”

  19. DXer said

    North Korea soldier who defected had immunity to anthrax
    By Yaron Steinbuch
    December 26, 2017

    Comment: US soldiers stationed in South Korea are vaccinated for anthrax (and so it certainly is not surprising, or particularly newsworthy, that North Korean soldiers would be vaccinated). It is surprising, though, that South Korean soldiers are not.

    • DXer said

      Actually, I’’m not informed about the Anthrax Vaccine Immunization Program and should not be addressing it, as it is outside the scope of this blog. And so I’ll link this Wikipedia article that draws a connection to the anthrax vaccination program and Amerithrax.

      Whereas I’m not informed on the subject, Dr. Meryl Nass has a lot of background on it.

      Anthrax Vaccine Immunization Program

  20. DXer said

    “Report: North Korea soldier found to have anthrax antibodies”
    By Elizabeth Shim | Dec. 26, 2017

    Dec. 26 (UPI) — One of the North Korean soldiers who defected to the South in 2017 was found to have antibodies in his bloodstream, a sign Pyongyang possesses anthrax, the acute disease caused by bacteria.

    South Korean authorities did not identify the soldier, who was either exposed to or vaccinated for anthrax, but did confirm he had developed immunity to the deadly disease before he defected, local news network Channel A reported Tuesday.


    North Korea has been suspected of developing biological weapons after the regime publicized the works of the Pyongyang Biological Technology Research Institute in 2015, run by the Korean People’s Army Unit 810.

    Pyongyang claimed the facility specializes in pesticide research but analysts have said dual-use equipment on the site suggests biological weapons are being manufactured in North Korea.


    Concerns spiked in South Korea after Seoul’s defense ministry confirmed the U.S. military in South Korea imported samples of anthrax 15 times since 2009, and a shipment in 2015 exposed as many as 22 people.

  21. DXer said

    [Editorial] Protect the people

    The Korea Herald-3 hours ago
    Cheong Wa Dae’s purchase of anthrax vaccines for the president and its staff with barely 1,000 vaccines for the rest of the population has come under public criticism. The government must stock up on anthrax vaccines sufficiently. Considering a mounting risk of military conflict on the Korean Peninsula, it should also take …

  22. DXer said

    “Blue House denies administering anthrax vaccines to Moon and aides,” Dec 25, 2017

  23. DXer said

    We’re not remotely prepared for the bioweapons threat

    By David A. Andelman

    Updated 3:49 PM ET, Thu December 21, 2017

    A Blue Ribbon Study Panel on Biodefense, led by former Sens. Joseph Lieberman and Tom Daschle, former Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Ridge and former Secretary of Health and Human Services Donna Shalala, among others, made a series of 33 recommendations two years ago to secure the United States against a bioweapon attack.
    Most have seen only a gesture of implementation. Two years later, Dr. Gerald W. Parker, Jr., director of Texas A&M University’s Pandemic and Biosecurity Policy Program, told this same panel: “I am more concerned than ever about the risk of biological threats — whether from outbreaks, accidents or attacks — and the need to underpin no-regret attribution decisions with a sound scientific foundation in microbial forensics.”

    Indeed, bioweapon attacks on the United States can come from any number of sources beyond North Korea — Iran, Syria or some rogue terrorist group that manages to get a hand on the expertise to deliver a biological blow beyond imagination.

    Bioweapons pose a threat that is real and tangible from any number of sources — and easily as lethal, potentially far broader and as irreversible as the outcome of any nuclear attack by a determined enemy. For the United States to counter effectively will require an exercise in global statesmanship and bureaucratic coordination that must begin today.

    David A. Andelman, visiting scholar at the Center on National Security at Fordham Law School and director of its Red Lines Project, is a contributor to CNN and a columnist for USA Today. Author of “A Shattered Peace: Versailles 1919 and the Price We Pay Today,” he was a foreign correspondent for The New York Times and CBS News in Asia and Europe. Follow him on Twitter @DavidAndelman. The views expressed in this commentary are his.

    Comment: “Bureaucratic coordination?” Ha! For example, in over a half decade, the FBI has not even been able to find and copy the Laboratory Notebook 4010, associated with the so-called “murder weapon” in the Fall 2001 anthrax letters. So what can the US do in defense? Employees of the same agency are tasked with keeping the country safe and analyzing the threat. That requires control of documents. The FBI has failed to give back the Army a copy of the Notebook — and the Army has claimed that it does not have it. The Army has been totally ineffectual in getting a copy of the Notebook 4010 from the FBI.

    Separately, something like 9 agencies have taken over a year-and-a-half to process 59 pages or so from an FBI memo summarizing the Amerithrax investigation. The “consultation” over something that should have taken an hour or so to redact has taken over a year-and-a-half delay. Attorneys fees should be imposed by the federal district court judge. The FBI should be encouraged to treat issues relating to potential terrorist threats more seriously and on a timely basis. Dave Hardy has been denying requests for expedition relating to the bioweapons threat in a very foolhardy manner.

  24. DXer said

    “North Korea Is Reportedly Testing Anthrax-Tipped ICBMs

    Although scary, it’s actually kind of baffling when you think about it.”

  25. DXer said

    North Korea Wants To Hit the U.S. With an Anthrax-Tipped Missile: Report

    By Jack Moore On 12/20/17 at 8:28 AM

    The source said that North Korea was likely looking to load its range of ICBMs with anthrax as its nuclear-tipped missiles cannot yet reach the U.S. mainland.


    The spy source told the newspaper that Kim Jong Un’s regime is testing whether the biological agent can withstand temperatures of more than 7,000 degrees, the temperature that such a missile would face when coming back into the Earth’s atmosphere.

  26. DXer said

    North Korea Begins Tests to Load Anthrax Onto ICBMs, Report Says ……/north-korea-begins-tests-to-load-anthrax-onto-icbms-…

    10 hours ago – North Korea has begun tests to load anthrax onto intercontinental ballistic missiles, Japan’s Asahi newspaper reported Tuesday, citing an unidentified person connected to South Korea’s intelligence services. The report said the testing involves ensuring the anthrax survives the immense temperatures …

    Report: North Korea Begins Tests to Use Anthrax on ICBMs

    North Korea is carrying out tests to load anthrax onto intercontinental ballistic missiles, according to Japan’s Asahi newspaper. Citing an unidentified source tied to South Korean intelligence, the report said Kim Jong Un’s regime is testing to determine whether anthrax will survive the high temperatures involved in a missile launch, Bloomberg reports. The news comes after the White House warned in its National Security Strategy earlier this week that North Korea is “pursuing chemical and biological weapons which could also be delivered by missile.” South Korean and U.S. intelligence officials have previously sounded the alarm over a suspected North Korean chemical and biological warfare program, with thousands of tons of chemical weapons already believed to be stockpiled.


    If intelligence — or a real-world launch of anthrax in missiles — shows the anthrax to be microencapsulated in silica, having been grown in silica, do you think that former FBI scientist Scott Decker — in his recent book on the anthrax attacks — will get around to admitting that his tests showed that Flask 1029 had NOT been grown in silica? And did not evidence a Silicon Signature?

    Do you think he will acknowledge that the FBI could not find the laboratory notes relating to the biological warfare decontamination experiment in which Ivins’ technician participated?

    Do you think he will mention that Egyptian Islamic Jihad shura members — upon being captured in 1998 — explained that Korea had provided Al Qaeda anthrax?

    And that both the FBI and CIA testing detected Ames at the Afghan lab? (See AMX Science Weekly Updates)

    Scott, how many more people have to die before you stop spinning?

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

    • DXer said

      NK rejects claim it is developing biological weapons
      By Yonhap
      Published : Dec 20, 2017 – 20:03

      North Korea on Wednesday rejected US allegations that it is developing biological weapons, saying that the claim is part of Washington’s scheme to stifle the regime.

      The Trump government’s first National Security Strategy released Monday said that the North is pursuing chemical and biological weapons that could also be delivered by missile.

    • DXer said

      Anthrax Killed Dozens in Russia in 1979 (Thanks to a Secret Bioweapon)

      Sebastien Roblin
      December 27, 2017

      The Sverdlovsk incident illustrates both how inherently awful and self-destructive bioweapons have the potential to be, and the extent to which authoritarian societies engage in extraordinary deception and obfuscation to conceal their accidents and illicit activities.

      Sébastien Roblin holds a master’s degree in conflict resolution from Georgetown University and served as a university instructor for the Peace Corps in China. He has also worked in education, editing and refugee resettlement in France and the United States. He currently writes on security and military history for War Is Boring.

  27. DXer said

    It’s never a surprise to look up from reading an in-depth, insightful and well-sourced article and see that Pulitzer Prize-winning Joby Warrick wrote it. He has written a range of notable Amerithrax articles, including the one where SD and his colleagues struck the CSI pose and one about infiltrator Rauf Ahmad.

    Joby WarrickWashington Post, September 10, 2017
    Officials see weapons threat as North Korea gains biotech expertise

    “In a country that is famously secretive, it is perhaps the most carefully guarded secret of all. North Korea consistently denies having a biological warfare program of any kind, and it has worked diligently to keep all evidence of weapons research hidden from sight.

    Yet, in 2015, the country’s leader took it upon himself to partially roll back the curtain. On June 6 of that year, Kim commandeered a crew of North Korean cameramen for a visit to the newly named Pyongyang Biotechnical Institute, a sprawling, two-story facility on the grounds of what used to a vitamin factory.

    State-run news media described the institute as a factory for making biological pesticides — mainly, live bacteria that can kill the worms and caterpillars that threaten North Korea’s cabbage crop. But to U.S. analysts studying the video, the images provided an unexpected jolt: On display inside the military-run facility were rooms jammed with expensive equipment, including industrial-scale fermenters used for growing bulk quantities of live microbes, and large dryers designed to turn billions of bacterial spores into a fine powder for easy dispersal.” …

    “It is hard to avoid the conclusion that the institute is intended to produce military-size batches of anthrax,” Melissa Hanham, a North Korea specialist at the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies in Monterey, Calif., wrote in a blog posting after the video was shown. “Regardless of whether the equipment is being used to produce anthrax today, it could be in the near future.”

    U.S. analysts now believe the timing of the visit was deliberate: The previous week, on May 28, the Pentagon had publicly acknowledged that live samples of U.S.-made anthrax bacteria had been accidentally shipped to a South Korean military base because of a lab mix-up. North Korea lodged a formal complaint with the United Nations on June 4, calling the incident proof of American “biological warfare schemes” against its citizens.

    Kim’s trip to the biotechnology institute came just two days later, and was clearly intended to send a message, Hanham said in an interview.

    Some weapons experts were skeptical, noting the absence of biohazard suits and protective gear typically found in laboratories that work with deadly pathogens. But since the release of the images, subsequent examinations have poked holes in the official story about the factory’s purpose. For one thing, some of the machines shown in the video were not visibly connected to any pipes, vents or ductwork. Experts also have questioned why North Korea would buy expensive industrial equipment at black-market rates, just to make a pesticide that can be purchased legally, at vastly cheaper rates, from China.

    Although overshadowed by Pyongyang’s nuclear and chemical weapons, the threat of biological attack from the North is regarded as sufficiently serious that the Pentagon routinely vaccinates all Korea-bound troops for exposure to anthrax and smallpox.

    “It’s a presumption that they have it and will use it,” said a retired military officer who oversaw troops on the peninsula. “We’ve had to spend a lot of time figuring out how to deal with some of the WMD.”


    U.S. analysts also have believed since at least the mid-1990s that North Korea possesses the smallpox virus, a conclusion based in part on the discovery of antibodies in the bloodstreams of North Korean soldiers who escaped to the South in the 1980s and 1990s.

    That assessment, while controversial, is buttressed by senior North Korean government and military defectors as well as foreign governments with special insight into the regime’s military secrets. In 1993, the head of the Russian intelligence agency’s foreign branch revealed in a report that North Korea was performing “applied military-biological research” on four pathogens, including microbes that cause anthrax and smallpox.

  28. DXer said

    Intelligence officials: Threat of biological weapons from North Korea growing

    Updated Dec 11, 6:03 PM; Posted Dec 11, 5:46 PM

    Joseph DeTrani, a retired CIA veteran who oversaw intelligence collection for North Korea in the 2000s, noted that ambiguity has been a built-in feature of North Korean weapons programs for decades.

    “They talk openly about their ‘nuclear deterrent,’ but with chemical and biological weapons, it’s different,” DeTrani said. “They’ve always played it close to the vest. For them, it’s a real option. But they want to preserve the possibility of deniability.”

  29. DXer said

    North Korea pushing for biological weapons factories, analysts say – 5 hours ago

    “Melissa Hanham, a North Korea specialist, reportedly wrote in a blog post soon after the images were released, “It is hard to avoid the conclusion that the institute is intended to produce military-size batches of anthrax.”

    The Associated Press contributed to this report

  30. DXer said

    Trump puts N. Korea back on state sponsor of terrorism list

    by Ali Vitali

    WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump on Monday designated North Korea a state sponsor of terror, a move aimed at increasing pressure on the regime.


    The nation was designated a state sponsor of terrorism in 1988, during the Reagan administration, following the bombing of a South Korean airliner. It was removed from the list in 2008 by the George W. Bush administration.
    The list, administered by the State Department, currently consists of Iran, Sudan and Syria.

    Comment: Is North Korea going to retaliate? If so, what might they do?

  31. DXer said

    The National Memo
    Sunday, November 19, 2017

    Steven Rosenfeld

    West Underestimates The Other North Korean Threat

    November 19, 2017 3:49 am / 0 Comments / Asia, Featured Post, Military, White House

    The international community, led by the United States, South Korea, and China, should invest in further efforts to gather intelligence on North Korea’s biological weapons capability,” the report says.


    The threat of biowarfare was falsely used by the George W. Bush administration to invade Iraq in 2003. Since then, the Syrian civil war has been the highest-profile conflict where biological weapons were reportedly used.

    While it’s hard to know where to separate the real threats from the paranoia and hyped militarism, the Belfer Center’s report lays out the history of biological warfare accusations and threats between the North Koreans and the U.S., and notes that Kim Jong-un appears to have used nerve gas to assassinate his half-brother last February.


    The Belfer Center report said that South Korea’s government takes the bio-warfare threat seriously, and points to a lengthy white paper by its military that discusses the prospect.

    “North Korea began developing chemical weapons following Kim Il Sung’s ‘Declaration for Chemicalization’ in December 1961 by establishing its own policy and installing chemical weapons research and development facilities,” that South Korean military assessment said, summarizing the history. “Following the commencement of production in the 1980s, it is estimated that North Korea has a stock of 2,500−5,000 tons of various chemical weapons stored in multiple facilities throughout the country. Moreover, North Korea likely has the capability to produce a variety of biological weapons including anthrax, smallpox, pest, francisella tularensis, and hemorrhagic fever virus.”


    While North Korea has historically denied having any biological weapons, the Belfer Center scholars say an incident in 2015 in which the U.S. military sent some germ warfare agents to South Korea prompted the North to recalibrate that assertion.

    “In 2015, when U.S. forces accidentally brought live Bacillus anthracis [Anthrax] test samples and Yersinia pestis [Plague] samples to the Osan Air Force base in South Korea, North Korea immediately issued a statement denying the existence of its BW program and accused the United States of targeting North Korea with a biological weapons attack,” the Belfer Center report says. “It even called on the UN Security Council to investigate the United States.”

    This climate of mutual suspicion and finger-pointing is emblematic of the biological weapons fold because, unlike nuclear weapons, bio-warfare agents are harder to detect and monitor as they are made in the same agricultural industrial facilities that make fertilizers. The military analysts say such facilities are designed for “dual use,” thus “making external monitoring and verification virtually impossible.”


    North Korea is assumed to have several pathogens in possession,” the Belfer report said. “The 2000 ROK [South Korea] Defense White Paper mentions anthrax and smallpox most frequently.

  32. DXer said

    North Korea’s Nukes May Not Be Its Biggest Threat
    It has biological and chemical weapons, too.

    “Those who track the issue, including researchers and former U.S. defense officials who teamed up on the Harvard report, believe that Kim is actually more likely to deploy biological or chemical arms. These weapons are easier to produce, to deliver, to conceal and to calibrate, and their use would be less likely to trigger the same international response as a nuclear strike.”


    Unlike nuclear weapons, which must be delivered through complex and detectable means, chemical or biological arms can be delivered covertly and with ease by mail or drone — and biological agents can even be spread by infected human agents. If Pyongyang were to use its own people as vehicles for conveying such weapons to South Korean civilians or American troops, an attack might be impossible to detect ahead of time, Chung told me.

    The equivalent of a “a few bottles of wine” of anthrax could wipe out 50 percent of a major metropolitan population, according to the Harvard study. “North Korea has 200,000 special forces,” the study notes. “Even a handful of those special forces armed with (biological weapons) would be enough to devastate South Korea.”


    The Pentagon has required all troops deployed in Korea to be vaccinated for smallpox and anthrax since 2004. Weber told me that U.S. and South Korean troops have markedly increased training for a biological attack over the past five years as the U.S. assessed that North Korean capabilities “changed.” At the beginning of 2017, the U.S. decided to deploy its most advanced bio-surveillance equipment to the peninsula’s largest port city.


    Another reason analysts believe that Kim might resort to chemical or biological weapons: He already has. VX was the weapon of choice used in the murder of Kim’s half-brother in the middle of an international airport in February — a sign of the dictator’s willingness to use such toxins, analysts say.

    There is also a different geopolitical environment when it comes to using chemical weapons. Despite the existence of long-standing international norms prohibiting their use since World War I, chemical weapons have been utilized with frequency2 over the past six years by Pyongyang’s close ally, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, in that nation’s civil war. Their most deadly deployments went largely ignored by international powers, and their smaller-scale use has gone entirely unpunished.3

    “Korean analysts should take note of how chemical weapons were used in the Syrian civil war, because this is likely going to be a test-bed for future North Korean actions in conflict with the South,” one military strategist, Bruce Bechtol Jr., wrote in a 2015 report for the Korean Journal of Defense Analysis.

    Chemical and biological weapons also provide plausible deniability for their handlers — and Kim publicly denies the very existence of the programs themselves.

  33. DXer said

    North Korea Biological Weapons: What We Know About Kim Jong Un’s Other Weapons of Mass Destruction

    By Sofia Lotto Persio On 11/7/17 at 3:32 AM

    North Korea’s nuclear threat may presently have the world’s attention but ballistic missiles capable of reaching the U.S. mainland aren’t the only weapons of mass destruction in Kim Jong Un’s arsenal.

    Pyongyang’s nuclear capabilities are well understood and high on the agenda of President Donald Trump in his ongoing five-country trip to Asia, but a recent study from the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard Kennedy School reported on a less well known aspect of North Korea’s armaments program: biological weapons.

    Andrew C. Weber, former assistant secretary of Defense for Nuclear, Chemical and Biological Defense Programs, commissioned the report over concerns that the biological weapons threat received too little attention.


    Exhibit A in the case of North Korea’s biological weapons capabilities is a series of pictures of Kim touring Pyongyang’s Biological Technology Research Institute in June 2015. The release of the pictures occurred shortly after it emerged that a military lab in Utah mistakenly sent live anthrax shipments to several destinations, both at home and abroad.

    Experts studying the pictures, which looked heavily staged, doubted was the timing was purely coincidental.

    “It was probably meant to send a message,” says Melissa Hanham, a senior research associate at the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies, who has studied the pictures in detail and was interviewed for the report.

    He believes the threat from biological weapons should be discussed further in the U.S. and in South Korea. “The attention and resources this issue deserves have been somewhat neglected.”

    Comment: At the time he deployed supposedly anthrax smelling dogs against Steve Hatfill, did Agent Scott Decker know about the testimony of the former EIJ leaders (who had been Zawahiri’s confidantes)? (I don’t know, but he can be asked). (Scott has a book coming out next Spring). If so, did he/the FBI bother to obtain a copy of the transcript of their 1998 statements in interrogation on the subject? (I don’t know, but he can be asked).

  34. DXer said

    North Korea could be listed as terrorism sponsor, White House adviser says


    North Korea could be re-added to the list of state sponsors of terrorism as part of US President Donald Trump’s strategy to counter the North’s growing nuclear threat.

    “You’ll hear more about that soon, I think,” said White House adviser H.R. McMaster as he briefed reporters on the president’s five-nation tour of Asia, which starts today.

    North Korea’s nuclear threat will be a key focus of Mr Trump’s meetings with the leaders of Japan, South Korea, China, Vietnam and the Philippines during the 12-day trip, Trump’s first official visit to the region.

    Mr McMaster cited the killing this year in a Malaysian airport of the estranged half brother of North Korea’s leader as an act of terrorism that could lead to the North’s placement on a list that currently includes only Iran, Sudan and Syria.

  35. DXer said

    New report sheds light on North Korea’s deadly biological weapons

    “North Korea has a very advanced biological weapons program, and it is extremely dangerous because it can be delivered covertly,” Andrew Weber, a former U.S. assistant secretary of defense for nuclear, chemical and biological defense programs, said in an interview with Mic. “Honestly, I wish these threats were taken as seriously as the nuclear weapons threat — because they should be.”

    Comment: Is former Amerithrax scientist Scott Decker’s faulty process of elimination analysis of the distribution of virulent Ames — and the FBI’s failure to produce Notebook 4282 pursuant to FOIA — responsible for putting our country at grave risk of being destroyed and millions being killed?

    Decker is not responsible for the failure to produce Notebook 4282. Isn’t that FBI FOIA honcho Dave Hardy’s fault?

  36. DXer said

    New York Post story –

    North Korea is suspected of producing biological weapons to unleash against enemy troops and civilians — including by fake janitors lugging backpack sprayers containing deadly pathogens, according to a report.

    “North Korea is likely to use biological weapons before or at the beginning of a conflict to disrupt society and create panic, incapacitate societies, and/or cause a significant military diversion,” according to the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at the Harvard Kennedy School.

    Dictator Kim Jung Un’s rogue regime plans to spread the pathogens through various means such as missiles, drones, aircraft and even portable sprayers, the report said.

    “It is theoretically possible that North Korean sleeper agents disguised as cleaning and disinfection personnel could disperse (biological weapons) agents with backpack sprayers,” the report said.

    The Belfer Center says the hermit kingdom is producing the biological weapons in facilities disguised as agricultural research labs.

    “It is likely that anthrax and smallpox is already used as a biological weapon,” the report said. “North Korean soldiers are vaccinated against smallpox, and so are US Army (personnel) stationed in South Korea — against smallpox and anthrax.”

    Agents like anthrax could cause mass casualties with a small amount: only a few kilograms of anthrax, equivalent to a few bottles of wine, released into a dense city could kill 50 percent of the population,” the report said.

    “While nuclear programs can be monitored by the number of nuclear tests and the success of missile tests, weaponizing and cultivating pathogens can stay invisible behind closed doors,” the authors said.

    “Moreover, equipment used for (biological weapons) production are often dual-use for agriculture, making external monitoring and verification virtually impossible.”

    Comment: It’s not that we would want Elliot Stabler from TV’s “Law and Order SVU”, instead of Decker from the Amerithrax, to be in charge of assessing the 1999 testimony by the senior EIJ leaders (and Zawahiri’s confidante) about Dr. Ayman having acquired anthrax from North Korea.

    But once, as the FBI Director noted, it was not possible to turn over the rocks in some foreign countries, Decker’s process of elimination in narrowing the labs that might have Ames was on tenuous and wholly unreliable grounds. And this was even before we found that the deactivation processes being used were ineffective to render virulent Ames inactive. That is, it is before we found it had been sent out willy nilly to labs around the world, including South Korea.

    But with the bold lie that it was kept only in Building 1425 rather than Building 1412 also, we saw how contrived the analysis was — how flexible it was when manipulation and rationalization was required to point the finger at the new guy they had found to replace Steve Hatfill.

    Maybe, for ego and career reasons, these investigators wanted to strike the CSI pose in Warrick’s Washington Post article really badly. (I don’t know).

    Stabler, OTOH, never posed for the camera. Despite Stabler’s excesses, he insisted on turning over every rock.

    Some people (like Dr. Majidi) content themselves with snarkily saying there will also be people focused on the grassy knoll. Most others want the government to produce the relevant documents (not exempt under FOIA) so as to get people on the same page.

    As the former lead investigator Lambert has said, the FBI is withholding a staggering amount of exculpatory evidence. Some of that evidence includes sworn testimony by Zawahiri’s confidante’s about Al Qaeda obtaining anthrax from North Korea.

    And some of that evidence includes the Ames strain of anthrax being detected at the Afghanistan lab. That is where Yazid Sufaat (who does not deny to me responsibility for the mailings) worked to develop an anthrax weapon for use against symbolic targets — such as was outlined on Mabruk’s laptop obtained by the CIA in 1998.

  37. DXer said

    Is President Trump going to visit the DMZ?

    North Korea claims the CIA tried to assassinate Kim Jong-un this year [with a biochemical weapon]
    Andy Wells
    Yahoo News UK10 October 2017

    The CIA tried to assassinate Kim Jong-un with a nerve agent this year – according to North Korea.

    A statement released by the Korean Central News Agency claims a US spy was paid to bump off the North Korean dictator using a deadly biological or chemical substance.

    However, the plot – similar to how Kim Jong-un’s half-brother Kim Jong-nam was assassinated at Kuala Lumpur airport in February – was apparently foiled by the secretive regime in May.

    The agency – the propaganda machine of the notoriously secretive state – said: “In May this year, a group of heinous terrorists who infiltrated into our country on the orders of the Central Intelligence Agency of the US and the South Korean puppet Intelligence Service with the purpose of carrying out a state-sponsored terrorism against our supreme headquarters using biological and chemical substance were caught and exposed.

    This palpably shows the true nature of the US as the main culprit behind terrorism.”
    The KCNA statement alleges a North Korean known only as ‘Kim’ was the spy paid to carry out the attack.

    The spy’s fate was not reported in the statement.

    This is not the first time that North Korea has made the claim against the CIA about using ‘Kim’ to assassinate their leader.

    The KCNA said in May: “The Central Intelligence Agency of the U.S. and the Intelligence Service (IS) of south Korea, hotbed of evils in the world, hatched a vicious plot to hurt the supreme leadership of the DPRK and those acts have been put into the extremely serious phase of implementation after crossing the threshold of the DPRK.

    “A hideous terrorists’ group, which the CIA and the IS infiltrated into the DPRK on the basis of covert and meticulous preparations to commit state-sponsored terrorism against the supreme leadership of the DPRK by use of bio-chemical substance, has been recently detected.”

    They went on to claim that Kim was paid more than £15,000 to carry out the deadly attack.

    The claims come as the war of words between North Korea and the United States ramps up over Kim Jong-un’s nuclear weapons programme.

    President Donald Trump threatened to “totally destroy” North Korea in his first address to the United Nations after the country threatened the US territory of Guam in August.

    • DXer said

      Donald Trump May Use North Korea Border Visit to Send Kim Jong …
      Newsweek-36 minutes ago

      According to the source, the White House has already dispatched a team to scout a location suitable for Trump’s “special activity” during his visit to South Korea in November.

      Details of the activity remain unspecified, but Trump is expected to “send a significant message” to North Korea during the visit, either “verbally or kinetically,” according to the report.

      Trump’s aides visited locations within the DMZ, such as the truce village of Panmunjom and the Observation Post, the official told Yonhap. Established at the end of the 1950-53 Korean war, the 2.5-mile-wide strip of land known as the DMZ provides a buffer between the two countries. It is heavily mined, lined with barbed wire and continually guarded by soldiers on both sides.

      Other possible sites for Trump’s visit include the frontline islands of Yeonpyeong or Baengnyeongdo (North Korea bombed Yeonpyeong Island in 2010 in the most recent direct confrontation), although the official couldn’t tell whether the aides visited those locations.

      While Trump’s fiery rhetoric against Pyongyang adds significance to a visit to the DMZ, it is common for U.S. presidents to tour the border area. Trump’s visit would mark the first presidential visit in five years, following that of President Barack Obama in 2012, President George W. Bush in 2002, President Bill Clinton in 1993, and President George Bush Sr., in 1992.

  38. DXer said

    Project on Managing The Microbe
    North Korea’s Biological Weapon Program: The Known and The Unknown, October 2017

    Click to access NK%20Bioweapons%20final.pdf

  39. DXer said

    In his forthcoming book, former FBI Agent R. Scott Decker tasked with collecting samples worldwide indirectly acknowledges that the FBI did not obtain a sample from North Korea (pointing to having obtained samples abroad only from Great Britain, Sweden and Canada).

    Upon not having access to some countries, that should have affected his analysis but didn’t. It is called accounting for the “known unknown.”

    Instead, he and his “science” colleagues merely discarded the CIA’s report that Ames had been detected in one of Al Qaeda’s Afghanistan anthrax lab. (see Michael Garvey’s account; he was the former CIA and FBI scientist who has published on the FBI’s dismissal of the CIA’s finding).

    A key to the FBI’s assessing “attribution” in such a case is to learn who was responsible for the various decisions made — for example, bringing in the anthrax smelling dogs, not advising the lead investigator that human DNA had been found on one of the letters, having two FBI microbiologists made unavailable to help with the investigation, determining not to pursue the Silicon Signature, and rationalizing negative findings regarding handwriting, polygraphs, paper, tracks, ink, fiber etc. all so that it fit someone profile from early Fall 2001.

    North Korea has Plague, Anthrax and Smallpox weapons that can … hours ago

    Among the illnesses it may be able to deliver by missile, bomb or plane-sprayer are Anthrax, Smallpox, the Plague, Botulism, Cholera, Typhoid, …

    Among the illnesses it may be able to deliver by missile, bomb or plane-sprayer are Anthrax, Smallpox, the Plague, Botulism, Cholera, Typhoid, Yellow Fever, Dystentry and Typhus.

    There are even many of the killer bio-agents have been tested on human beings, whilst Kim Jong-un’s laboratory technicians are forced to work without protection.


    The October biological weapons report comes just seven months after Kim Jong Nam , the North Korean leader’s half-brother, was assassinated at the orders of the tyrant, who feared he might try and usurp him.


    In their report called North Korea’s Biological Weapons Program, researchers also say image analysis of Pyongyang’s Bio-technical Institute suggests it could “produce military-style batches of biological weapons – specifically anthrax.”

    It continues: “The most recent statement by the South Korean Defence Ministry is that ‘North Korea has 13 types of biological weapons which it can weaponise withing ten days.

    “And anthrax and smallpox are the likely agents it would deploy.”

  40. DXer said

    North Korea Also Has Nerve Agent VX, Chemical Weapons Expert Warns

    by Nick Bailey and Michele Neubert

    The chance that North Korea might provide jihadis with some of their chemical or nuclear capability is a huge concern at the moment,” he said. “What some people forget … is that in 2006 North Korea helped [Syrian President Bashar al-] Assad and his regime set up their own nuclear program which was destroyed by the Israelis. But only as recently as a few weeks ago, the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons intercepted two North Korean ships heading towards northern Syria with equipment to make chemical weapons.”

    De Bretton-Gordon has described VX as “the most toxic chemical weapon ever produced,” highlighting that even a “microscopic amount” can prove deadly. VX also featured in the 1996 action thriller “The Rock.”


    However, Professor Hazel Smith at London’s School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) says that would be a major change in policy for the North Korean regime.

    “Historically North Korea values state sovereignty and doesn’t value interactions with non-state entities such as ISIS and al Qaeda,” she said. “Given the level of surveillance over their shipping activities it’s also unlikely they would be able to, or try to transport weapons.”

    Comment: Former FBI Director Mueller said, in Amerithrax, that the FBI was never able to turn over some foreign rocks (e.g., North Korea) as to whether they had virulent Ames. Heck, he wasn’t even able to get the FBI access to Yazid Sufaat until November 2001, 11 months after he was detained by Malaysia.

    • DXer said

      Rather, I meant that the FBI did not interview Yazid Sufaat until November 2002, 11 months after he was detained by Malaysia when he tried to reenter the country in December 2001. The FBI Director Mueller went to Malaysia in March 2002, as I recall, to seek access.

  41. DXer said

    What are North Korea’s other WMDs?

    BBC News-54 minutes ago
    South Korean intelligence believes that the North is well-able to produce and weaponise pathogens like anthrax, botulism and typhus, but it is …

    North Korea makes no secret of its nuclear weapons ambitions. In marked contrast, it does not admit to having chemical or biological weapons. It has signed up to a treaty banning biological weapons, but it has not acceded to the equivalent agreement banning chemical weapons.

    US and South Korean experts believe that, in fact, North Korea does have a significant chemical weapons programme, with stockpiles of munitions containing nerve, choking and blister agents; such substances as phosgene; hydrogen cyanide; mustard; and sarin.

    North Korea has a huge artillery and rocket force capable of delivering such munitions, though it remains unclear if it is able to produce chemical warheads that would survive the stresses of a flight on a ballistic missile.

    Chicago Tribune-Sep 8, 2017

    A sneak peak at America’s war plans for North Korea … Biological weapons such as small pox and anthrax may also play a role. In the brazen …

    . Some estimates indicate that North Korea possesses 2,500 to 5,000 metric tons of chemical weapons including nerve agents like sarin and VX. Biological weapons such as small pox and anthrax may also play a role. In the brazen assassination of Kim Jong Un’s half-brother, Kim Jong Nam, the world saw that North Korea could effectively use chemical weapons.

    In the event of a war, North Korea will not hesitate to launch chemical and biological weapons at South Korean and U.S. air bases or on main supply routes. A biologically or chemically contaminated site would have to be treated with special care, requiring all forces in the area to don protective gear and severely disrupting South Korean and U.S. movements across the battlefield. Delivering these payloads would not be challenging, as North Korean missiles are capable of carrying chemical and biological weapons in place of conventional explosives. Decentralized attacks could also be in the cards, as North Korea has reportedly recruited hundreds of spies across the world to conduct various missions. Those agents would likely be blended into the larger North Korean population and could be activated to carry out attacks using weapons of mass destruction in the South.

  42. DXer said

    North Korea shipments to Syria chemical arms agency intercepted: U.N. report, August 21, 2017

    North Korea Has Been Trying To Help Syria’s Assad Build His Chemical Weapons Program

    By Callum Paton On 8/22/17 at 7:36 AM

    The report, by a panel of U.N. experts into sanctions violations by North Korea and intended only to be seen by the Security Council, details how a dummy corporation, a front for North Korea’s arms dealing ventures, attempted to send two shipments to a Syrian government agency responsible for the country’s chemical weapons program.

    The consignments were destined for Syrian shell companies designated by the U.S. as fronts for Syria’s Scientific Studies and Research Centre (SSRC), which has overseen Syria’s expansive chemical weapons program since the 1970s.

    North Korea has been under UN sanctions since 2006 over its ballistic missile and nuclear program. Sanctions have been increased following five nuclear weapons tests and four long-range missile launches.

    Syria had agreed to destroy its chemical weapons in 2013 under a deal brokered by Russia and the United States but reports have claimed that the Assad regime is in violation of the U.N. backed deal, continuing to manufacture chemical weapons at a site near the Syrian capital Damascus and in regime-held Hama province.

  43. DXer said

    Lieberman: US Not ‘Organized or Prepared’ For Bioattack

    President Donald Trump’s warning of “fire and fury” against North Korea if it threatens the United States was “strong,” former Sen. Joe Lieberman said Wednesday, but he is concerned about Kim Jong Un developing the capability for a bioattack on the United States.


    He said there is no direct intelligence to point that a bioterror attack is part of Kim’s schemes …

  44. DXer said

    While people enjoy their summer and vacations, it seems that they should make time to collect the supplies that the American Red Cross recommends.

    North Korea sanctions bring nuclear issue to ‘critical phase’, says China
    United Nations imposes sanctions on Pyongyang over nuclear ambitions
    Chinese and North Korean foreign ministers hold talks

    “The North Korean threat has not left us; it is rapidly growing more dangerous.” — Nikki Haley

    I won $1,000 at a recent Onondaga Lake Regatta in a “Photo Hunt.”

    The day before at the same regatta I had won 2 airline tickets anywhere by picking the correct corporate crew team (of 20) that was going to win. I bet big after the first heat when a team beat last year’s winner. But the sign clearly stated you needed to be present to win. Although the organizer (from a nature refuge who does great work organizing paddles) helpfully called me to tell me I had won and I had 10 minutes to get there, I was traveling from a nearby island by pedal boat and couldn’t make it in time to be eligible for the prize.

    Then yesterday I was pursued by a 4-foot black water snake — and learned how fast i can go pedaling backwards.

  45. DXer said

    North Korea threatens US with more ‘unexpected gift packages’ after …

    Fox News-20 hours ago
    Consistent with the other threats the country has issued before, North Korea cautioned that another so-called “gift package” would be heading …

    With national pride flying as high as one of its recent intercontinental ballistic missile tests, North Korea threatened the United States — again — on Thursday, warning with typical hyperbolic abandon that the rogue regime would soon send “unexpected ‘gift packages,” claiming America is “on the knife’s edge of life and death” and slamming the Trump administration.

    Rodong Sinmun, the newspaper of North Korea’s ruling party, issued the threat in a column titled “Heed the Warning of Juche Korea” in which the authors asserted the Trump administration is being forced to “wave a white flag” amid tensions with Pyongyang.

    “Every minute and every second, the new reality that U.S. mainland is on the knife’s edge of life and death is forcing U.S. administration to wave a white flag and fundamentally change her North Korea policy,” the piece stated.

    “It is not the denuclearization of N. Korea, but the security of U.S. mainland which should be the top priority of Trump administration,” it added.

    If U.S. still refuses to accept such a realistic demand and doggedly pursue hostile policy against North Korea in order to save face, she will receive unexpected ‘gift packages’ which we will continue to send,” according to the column.

    Experts say the “gift packages” North Korean leader Kim Jong Un promises are more planned missile tests, which are banned by the United Nations. Kim previously urged scientists to continue to “frequently send big and small ‘gift packages’ to the Yankees as ever so that they would not feel weary.”

    • DXer said

      North Korea’s ‘gift’

      Missiles are just a sample of the communist regime’s deadly wares

      By Bridget Johnson – – Tuesday, July 11, 2017

      Kim Jong-un considered his July Fourth intercontinental ballistic missile test just one of many promised “big and small ‘gift packages’ to the Yankees,” words that ring beyond the “handsome” Hwasong-14 missile.

      And if we’re going to truly rein in Pyongyang, we’ve got to unwrap every package.

      That means pinpointing every buyer of illegal weapons from the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) — a litany of bad hombres — and every under-the-table player who could benefit from any of Mr. Kim’s liquidation sales. Because as much as the people of North Korea live in an isolated bubble of misery, the regime has eagerly globalized its nefarious activities.

      Stopping North Korea’s regime from unleashing deadly force isn’t just about putting a lid on their ballistic missiles and nuclear warheads, as apocalyptic as even one of those can be in the hands of a madman. Consider that North Korean assassins were walking around Kuala Lumpur’s busy international airport in February with the deadly nerve agent VX to take down the dictator’s half-brother, Kim Jong-nam. That was North Korea on offense: an attack conducted on foreign soil with a one-victim amount of a weapon of mass destruction.

      North Korea is believed to have up to 5,000 tons of chemical weapons, according to South Korea’s defense ministry, including sarin. Their bioweapons production is believed to be capable of churning out large quantities of anthrax, and reports have indicated bubonic plague, cholera and smallpox are also on the menu.

      It gets worse — and much more global — with a network of known and unknown customers.

      Last August, Egypt intercepted the Jie Shun heading north into the Suez Canal and bearing, according to a U.N. document obtained by Japan’s Kyodo News Agency in February, “the largest seizure of ammunition in DPRK sanctions history” including some 30,000 rocket-propelled grenades packed into crates claiming the contents were innocuous machinery. A maritime history for the vessel shows port calls four months prior in Bayuquan and Yingkou, Chinese harbors on the peninsula abutting the North Korean border. Kyodo reported that the ship, sailing under a Cambodian flag, had a final destination other than Egypt.

      Who is receiving Mr. Kim’s illicit weapons — and who might share in his stockpiles in the future?

      Bruce Bechtol, a professor at Angelo State University in Texas and former Defense Intelligence Agency officer, studied Pyongyang’s weapons deals with Bashar Assad for a 2015 report in the Korean Journal of Defense Analysis. That includes rocket launchers, tanks, technical support and chemical weapons as well as delivery systems. Mr. Bechtol reported that DPRK-manufactured machine guns have been spotted in Syria and beyond, with Mr. Kim’s allies in Iran, Hezbollah and Yemen’s Houthi rebels. ***

      North Korea should be redesignated as a state sponsor of terrorism, given the ample evidence. But we should also plan our strategy to stop Mr. Kim cognizant of where North Korea’s wares could land next, including in the hands of terror groups eager to expand upon their own chemical, biological and nuclear weapons efforts.

      As long as Mr. Kim is on his current trajectory, the “gifts” will keep coming — and some will be better wrapped than others.

      • Bridget Johnson is a senior fellow with the news and public policy group Haym Salomon Center.

  46. DXer said

    US Secretary of State to North Korea: ‘We are Not Your Enemy’, August 01, 2017

    However, the talk of the possibility of a first military strike on North Korea is alarming to some analysts.

    “It would also result in millions of casualties and trillions of dollars in economic damage, perhaps triggering a worldwide depression,” said Joel Wit, Senior Fellow at the US-Korea Institute at Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies.

    “Given those consequences, we have to seriously ask ourselves: Have we exhausted all possible options for dealing with the North including dialogue and diplomacy? The answer is no,” Wit tells VOA.

  47. DXer said

    North Korea assassination sheds light on chemical weapons arsenal hour ago
    A State Department report in 2001 found that North Korea was … at least four pathogens: anthrax, plague, cholera and biological toxins, such …

    In carrying out history’s first state-sponsored VX assassination in a country 3,000 miles from its borders, North Korea has demonstrated a new willingness to use its formidable arsenal of deadly toxins and poisons to kill or intimidate enemies on foreign soil, analysts say.

    Seen in the light of North Korea’s recent flurry of provocative missiles tests, Kim Jong Nam’s killing now looks to many experts like a proving exercise for a weapons system – in this case, a robust chemical-weapons stockpile that Pyongyang is thought to have built over decades and kept carefully under wraps.

    • DXer said

      Joby Warrick, who has written more than one notable article featured in this blog, writes

      National Security
      The message behind the murder: North Korea’s assassination sheds light on chemical weapons arsenal

      World events makes the thoughtful analysis on the broader topic by Filippa Lentzos (“Ignore Bill Gates: Where bioweapons focus really belongs”) especially timely.

      “U.S. and South Korean intelligence agencies have long believed that North Korea possesses significant stores of the nerve agents VX and sarin — and probably biological weapons as well — but in the past, such arsenals were assumed to be intended as a deterrent against foreign attacks. But in the attack on Kim Jong Nam, North Korea revealed a strategy for using chemicals that looks a lot like ­cyberwarfare: limited, highly secretive attacks that can damage an enemy without inviting massive retaliation.

      Whether Kim Jong Un would risk such an attack against a foreign government — even the United States — is unclear. But the February incident is a reminder that North Korea has options for striking targets abroad that do not hinge on the country’s ability to build an intercontinental ballistic missile capable of reaching the U.S. mainland, current and former U.S. officials say.


      Was it assembled in Malaysia? Not necessarily,” said the official, who insisted on anonymity in discussing U.S. intelligence assessments of the North Korean threat. “A single three-ounce container that would fit in your carry-on luggage would hold far more than you’d ever need.”


      A State Department report in 2001 found that North Korea was “already self-sufficient” in making all the necessary precursors for sarin and VX, as well as older weapons such as mustard gas. Drawing from an array of sources — from North Korean defectors and spies to satellite photos and electronic eavesdropping — U.S. agencies calculated the size of the country’s chemical stockpile at between 2,500 and 5,000 tons. That’s far larger than Syria’s arsenal at its peak, and larger than any known to exist in the world, except for those built by the Soviet and U.S. militaries during the Cold War.

      A parallel but reportedly much smaller program produces biological weapons, current and former U.S. intelligence officials think. Published Defense Intelligence Agency documents have described efforts underway to weaponize at least four pathogens: anthrax, plague, cholera and biological toxins, such as botulinum.

      Work on chemical and biological programs began years before Pyongyang tested its first nuclear bomb, and U.S. analysts suspect that both were intended at first as a deterrent against foreign attacks. But although North Korea regularly boasts of its achievements in atomic energy and missiles, its chemical and biological weapons have always been kept carefully hidden, according to a study released jointly last month by the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies and the U.S. Korea Institute.”


      “North Korea has deliberately built its NBC [nuclear, biological, chemical] infrastructures in extreme secrecy; undertaken camouflage, concealment and deception operations . . . and dispersed NBC facilities around the country,” report author Joseph S. Bermudez Jr., a prominent expert on North Korean weapons systems, wrote in the report. “It is therefore probable that there are significant elements of the NBC programs and their infrastructures that are simply unknown outside the North Korean government.”


      U.S. and South Korean defense officials alike take the threat seriously, so much so that both governments inoculate their troops against exposure to anthrax bacteria and even the smallpox virus. Soldiers deployed along the border are issued gas masks and protective suits and put through occasional drills to prepare for the day when canisters of VX or sarin are fired across the border in North Korean rockets or artillery shells.

      Any such attack would certainly prompt a massive retaliation. But Kim Jong Nam’s assassination has forced U.S. officials to consider the possibility of a clandestine attack, one that might be more difficult to trace, or to defend against.


      With biological weapons, especially, there’s an opportunity for covert attack with deniability, since attribution would be difficult,” said Andrew C. Weber, former assistant secretary of defense for nuclear, chemical and biological weapons defense. Although U.S. officials are fixated on North Korea’s nuclear advances, a nuclear attack “is not the most likely, or possibly even the most consequential,” he said.

      As Kim Jong Nam’s assassination demonstrated, the delivery of such weapons can be easy — especially for deadly pathogens, but also for toxic chemicals, he said. And any military response would be delayed for days or weeks while investigators attempted to find evidence that firmly pointed to a perpetrator.

      “A chemical attack would be knowable, almost as soon as it happens,” Weber said. “But Kim Jong Un is a brutal guy, and he may have no qualms against doing it. Or he may just miscalculate.”

      Sending a message
      Kim Jong Un’s plan to use VX to kill his half brother included extensive measures to ensure secrecy — so many, in fact, that some experts think the North Koreans wanted to keep their enemies ignorant about its use of the toxin, or at least unsure.

      After Kim Jong Nam’s death, Pyongyang requested the immediate return of his body, without an autopsy being performed. Malaysia refused, and soon afterward, local news media reported an attempt by unknown individuals to break into the morgue where the body was kept. The attempt failed, but in the weeks since, North Korea has insisted that the leader’s half brother died of a heart attack and that any reports of chemical toxins were lies spread by outsiders.


      “They carry out an attack and make people afraid, but then ensure that there’s no evidence that can lead to real accountability,” Pollack said. “For them, that’s the sweet spot.”

      Joby Warrick joined the Post’s national staff in 1996. He has covered national security, the environment and the Middle East and currently writes about terrorism. He is the author of two books, including 2015’s “Black Flags: The Rise of ISIS,” which was awarded a 2016 Pulitzer Prize for nonfiction.

      • DXer said

        North Korea’s Biochemical Threat – Popular Mechanics
        Oct 30, 2009 – Anthrax is believed to be one of North Korea’s most fully developed biological weapons. Growing anthrax on a large scale is relatively easy: It …

        In contrast to the global frenzy triggered by North Korea’s nuclear weapons test, the threat of biochemical WMDs has prompted a muted response from the West. The reason may be what former weapons inspector Christopher Davis has dubbed “nuclear blindness,” which he defines as “the tunnel vision … brought on by the mistaken belief that it is only the size of the bang that matters.”


        According to defectors, however, they have been used inside the country on human test subjects. The victims: political prisoners.

        Former prisoner Lee Sun Ok described one such test before the U.S. House Committee on International Relations: “In February 1990, I was asked by the chief guard to follow him to an administration warehouse … He ordered me to check out six bundles (five pairs in each bundle) of gas masks with rubber gowns, which looked like a sea diver’s kit. When I returned to my prison chamber, a total of 150 prisoners, several from each unit, were selected and separated from the other[s]. The selected prisoners were mostly crippled and weak women who had less labor value.”

        Later, said Lee, “I saw many prisoners lying on the slope of a hill, bleeding from their mouths and motionless, enveloped by strange fumes and surrounded by scores of guards in the gas masks … I delivered earlier in the morning.”

        Additionally, a South Korean human rights activist has obtained what he claims are documents authorizing the transfer of prisoners for WMD experimentation. “The above person is transferred … for the purpose of human experimentation with liquid gas for chemical weapons,” one document reads.

  48. DXer said

    North Korea demands that the U.S. hand over would-be assassins of Kim Jong Un

    By Amanda Erickson May 11

    Last week, North Korea made a fairly sensational allegation: that in 2014, the CIA and South Korea’s National Intelligence Service conspired to assassinate Kim Jong Un with a biochemical weapon.

    In vivid detail, the North Korean Ministry of State Security described how U.S. and South Korean officials “ideologically corrupted and bribed” a North Korean citizen working in Russia. The plan was as follows: The alleged agent would return home to North Korea, wait for a public event, then use some kind of poisonous substance on top regime officials. Pyongyang suggested that South Korean agents provided satellite communication equipment and money to this alleged would-be killer. The United States, according to this account, provided a biochemical substance — a delayed-action radioactive or “nano poisonous” gas. ***

    In 2011, a defector to South Korea suspected of being a North Korean secret agent was arrested on suspicion of attempting to assassinate Park Sang-Hak, an outspoken critic of the Pyongyang regime. South Korean authorities said the suspected agent had set up a meeting with Park in a subway station in Seoul and planned to kill him with a poison pen.

    And, most recently, the North Korean regime has been widely blamed for the death of Kim Jong Nam, the estranged older half brother of Kim Jong Un. Malaysian authorities said he was attacked by two women at the Kuala Lumpur airport; one grabbed him and the other covered his face with a cloth doused in a liquid, which Malaysian investigators later identified as VX nerve agent, a banned chemical weapon.

    He died on the way to the hospital.

  49. DXer said

    Stan Statham: My take on biological weapons

    Posted: 05/04/17, 7:58 AM PDT

    “The unit was in the espionage business. Both the Major and the Master Sergeant spoke German. I did not. We had all received Top Secret clearances and were assigned to gather as much information as possible from East Germany regarding biological weapons. At that time I still remember that we called it Germ Warfare.

    Those two gentlemen and I were assigned to gather intelligence by meeting with people we referred to as sources. After those meetings my task was to microfilm documents and type a report which I forwarded immediately to the Pentagon in Washington, D.C.
    One of my favorite memories of that time was that the other two guys regularly used a small tape recorder the size of a Walkman that they stuck into a back pocket. There was a long, thin cord which had to be put down the sleeve of the Major or Master Sergeant’s coat and plugged into an actual fake wrist watch, which was in fact was the microphone.

    I remember that just one of the locations from which we gathered information was the Institute for Serum and Vaccine Testing located in Leipzig, Germany. That facility was then thought to be developing those kind of deadly weapons. …

    The information that bothers me most today is that the leader of North Korea, Kim Jong Un, also has the ability to start using chemicals in warfare. And, that is tragic because I think he is one crazy bastard.”

  50. DXer said

    North Korea claims US ‘biochemical’ plot to kill Kim Jong Un

    By James Griffiths, CNN

    Updated 7:34 AM ET, Fri May 5, 2017

    CNN)North Korea has accused the US and South Korea of attempting to assassinate leader Kim Jong Un with a “bio-chemical substance.”

    In an extraordinary 1,800-word report Friday, North Korean state news agency KCNA said a “hideous terrorist group” conspired with the CIA and South Korea’s Intelligence Service (IS) to “commit bomb terrorism targeting the supreme leadership” during major events including a recent military parade.
    The report claimed a North Korean citizen was involved in the plot, using “biochemical substances including radioactive substance and nano poisonous substance” to target Kim.
    IS did not respond to a request for comment.


    History of unfounded claims

    North Korea has a history of bombastic propaganda featuring unfounded claims.

    Last month, the state-run newspaper Rodong Sinmun claimed US-Australian military exercises in northern Australia were preparation for nuclear war against North Korea and threatened Darwin with a potential retaliatory strike.
    For its part, South Korea has admitted to having plans in place to kill Kim.
    Last year, lawmakers said Seoul “has a general idea and plan to use precision missile capabilities to target the enemy’s facilities in major areas as well as eliminating the enemy’s leadership.”
    The country’s Joint Chiefs of Staff has prepared a system called the Korea Massive Punishment and Retaliation (KMPR) that would involve surgical missile attacks, exclusive special warfare units and an ability to strike North Korea’s leadership if South Korea feels threatened by nuclear attack.

    • DXer said

      North Korea says CIA sent lumberjack to assassinate Kim Jong-un with radioactive material at Day of the Sun parade

      The secretive country made the astonishing claim today as tensions continue to increase between North Korea and America

      BySophie EvansPatrick Lion
      • 10:32, 5 MAY 2017
      • Updated12:25, 5 MAY 2017

      North Korea has accused the CIA and South Korea of using a ‘lumberjack’ to try to assassinate Kim Jong-Un with a biochemical weapon.

      t alleged the organisations infiltrated a “hideous terrorists’ group” into North Korea “to commit state-sponsored terrorism” by use of “bio-chemical substance”.

      The alleged assassination plot was due to be carried out during Day of the Sun celebrations in Pyongyang in April, according to the state and media reports.

      It involved “biochemical substances” – such as radioactive substances or nano poisonous substances – although it is unclear exactly which ones.

      It also involved a North Korean ‘assassin’, known only by his surname, “Kim”, according to the North’s KCNA news agency.

      The man is said to have worked as a lumberjack in Russia.

      He was allegedly “corrupted” by the CIA and IS and transformed into “a terrorist full of repugnance and revenge against the supreme leadership of the DPRK.”

      KCNA claimed the two intelligence services “ideologically corrupted” and bribed the North Korean lumberjack surnamed “Kim”.

      “They hatched a plot of letting human scum Kim commit bomb terrorism targeting the supreme leadership during events at the Kumsusan Palace of the Sun and at military parade and public procession after his return home,” KCNA reported.

      “They told him that assassination by use of biochemical substances including radioactive substance and nano poisonous substance is the best method that does not require access to the target, their lethal results will appear after six or twelve

      “Then they handed him over $20,000 on two occasions and a satellite transmitter-receiver and let him get versed in it.”

    • DXer said

      Earlier story from April 21 –

      North Korea: U.S. Will Use Chemical Weapons to Take Out Kim Jong Un and Control the World

      By Tom O’Connor On 4/21/17

      The charges came via a report by Pyongyang’s official media outlet, the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), entitled “U.S. Biochemical War Plan against Korean Nation under Fire.” The article cited a spokesperson for the North Side Headquarters of the Nationwide Special Committee for Probing the Truth behind the GIs, a government agency tasked with investigating U.S. war crimes, as saying Thursday that evidence had been uncovered that the U.S. transported chemical weapons to the South Korean port city of Busan in preparation for war.

      “The U.S. has fully revealed its criminal scenario to make no scruple of using biochemical weapons to exterminate the Korean nation in order to realize its wild ambition for dominating the world,” the committee’s statement read, according to KCNA.

      For years, Pyongyang has claimed the U.S. government was preparing the so-called “Plan Jupiter,” a biochemical attack on the Korean Peninsula intended to topple the government of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. The U.S. has not officially responded to these claims, however, no evidence has been publicly presented to substantiate them.

      The latest commentary came in response to earlier intelligence reports from Japan, a regional U.S. ally, claiming that North Korea had produced weaponized sarin gas. In response to these reports, Japanese President Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told his parliament last week that the nation was under threat of a chemical weapons attack by North Korea. “The security situation around our country is getting increasingly severe,” he said, according to CNN.

    • DXer said

      N. Korea operating regiment-level biochemical weapons unit: military

      2017/02/27 15:30

      SEOUL, Feb. 27 (Yonhap) — South Korea’s military said Monday that Pyongyang is presumed to be operating a regiment-level biochemical weapons unit, highlighting the need for the country to be prepared for unconventional attacks.

      Seoul is paying more attention to Pyongyang’s development of biochemical weapons after North Korean leader Kim Jong-un’s half brother Kim Jong-nam was killed in Malaysia earlier this month. The eldest son of late former leader Kim Jong-il died on Feb. 13 at an airport in Kuala Lumpur after apparently being poisoned with VX nerve agent. The deadly agent is classified as a chemical weapon and banned around the world.

      During the meeting with the Bareun Party, the Ministry of National Defense said North Korea is operating production facilities for chemical and biological weapons, and has a stockpile of such materials that can be used in any attack.

      The military said it plans to bolster its detection capabilities against North Korea’s possible biochemical provocation.

      Rep. Oh Shin-hwan of the Bareun Party said the party will spare no expense to support the military’s upgrade of its defense capabilities in the face of growing unconventional weapons threats.

    • DXer said

      North Korea accuses CIA and South Korea of plotting to assassinate Kim Jong Un

      BEIJING — North Korea accused the U.S. and South Korean intelligences agencies on Friday of plotting to kill the nation’s leader, Kim Jong Un, using “biochemical agents.”

      The accusation came amid sharply increased tensions between the United States and North Korea over Pyongyang’s nuclear and missile programs, and just a few days before a presidential election in South Korea.


      It alleged that the citizen, named Kim, was given $290,000 over the course of various meetings, meant for himself and accomplices, as well as satellite communications equipment. He was supposed to target the “supreme leadership” at a public event or military parade, using “bomb terrorism” involving “biochemical substances including radioactive substance and nano-poisonous substance,” it said.


      But Cui Zhiying, a professor in the Center for Asia-Pacific Studies at Tongji University in Shanghai, said the accusation was unlikely to be true, and more likely just another episode in a “war of words” between the two sides.

      “There is no doubt that the United States and South Korea have been thinking about eradicating Kim Jong Un, but it is hard to put into practice,” he said. He said the claim was more likely a North Korean response to “escalating threats” from the U.S. side.


      Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has said that the administration is not seeking regime change in North Korea, and he told ABC last month that he was “not aware” of any plans to assassinate Kim.

      Last week, however, Ohio Gov. John Kasich told reporters that the best way to solve the North Korea problem was to “eradicate the leadership.”


      John Delury, a professor of international relations at Yonsei University in Seoul, said one of the North Korean regime’s main narratives is that the country faces relentless hostility from the outside world, driven by the United States.

      “That is their central argument as to why they need to develop a military deterrent,” he said. “Whether there is some truth [to the assassination claim] or whether it is entirely fictional, it fits this narrative.”

      Comment: It seems that it would be a good time to collect that supplies the American Red Cross has been recommending for some years now.

    • DXer said

      N. Korea threatens to launch attack against intelligence agencies of S. Korea, U.S.

      2017/05/05 18:22

      SEOUL, May 5 (Yonhap) — North Korea threatened Friday to launch an anti-terrorist attack against the intelligence agencies of South Korea and the United States as it accused them of plotting to kill North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.

      North Korea’s Ministry of State Security claimed that a terrorists’ group supported by the CIA and South Korea’s intelligence agency infiltrated North Korea to stage a terrorist attack against the North Korean leader by using a bio-chemical substance.

      “We will ferret out and mercilessly destroy to the last one the terrorists of the U.S. CIA” and South Korea’s National Intelligence Service “targeting the dignity of the DPRK supreme leadership,” North Korea’s Ministry of State Security said in an English-language statement carried by the North’s official Korean Central News Agency.

      “Korean-style anti-terrorist attack will be commenced from this moment to sweep away the intelligence and plot-breeding organizations of the U.S. imperialists and the puppet clique.”

      • DXer said

        Updated on May 5, 2017

        The statement said in response to the alleged plot, a “Korean-style anti-terrorist attack will be commenced from this moment to sweep away the intelligence and plot-breeding organizations of the U.S. imperialists and the puppet clique,” referring to South Korea.

        The ministry demanded that the United States and South Korea execute the intelligence agents involved in the “heinous” plot and apologize.

        The statement was carried on North Korea’s official news service and read on state TV.

        Officials at South Korea’s National Intelligence Service did not answer repeated phone calls seeking comment.

      • DXer said

        Except from text suggesting that retaliation will not be limited geographically.

        “The Ministry of State Security whose mission is to safeguard the leader, the social system and the people will ferret out to the last one the organizer, conspirator and followers of the recent hideous state-sponsored terrorism even by ransacking the whole earth, in reflection of the will of the army and people of the DPRK burning their hearts with hatred and wrath against the hideous murderous devils, no matter at which corner of the planet they may be.

        2. Korean-style anti-terrorist attack will be commenced from this moment to sweep away the intelligence and plot-breeding organizations of the U.S. imperialists and the puppet clique, the most mean and brutal hideous terrorist group in the world.

        Even though we wipe out all those villains involved in the recent hideous state-sponsored terrorism, there is no vouch that the enemies would stop manoeuvering as long as the chieftains and the plot-breeding bases remain.

        It is not a secret that the U.S. imperialists and the puppet group of traitors are getting all the more reckless with each passing day and their moves are spearheaded against the supreme headquarters of the Korean revolution.

        It is as clear as noonday that such heinous crime targeting the supreme headquarters of the Korean revolution would continue to be attempted, as long as the U.S. imperialists and the south Korean puppet group of traitors remain unchanged in their hostile policy toward the DPRK and there are CIA and IS running amuck as a spearhead in executing the policy.

        Therefore, it is our determination to root up all the dens of plot and trick like CIA and IS, the source of all evils in the world, and a series of more powerful our-style anti-terrorism striking actions will begin immediately.”

  51. DXer said

    Heed Joe Lieberman’s Warning On Biological Weapons

    Peter Apps (Reuters)April 26, 2017
    Read more:

    “The greatest danger may come if any of the handful of people who have relevant expertise decide to mount solo attacks. After anthrax-filled envelopes began to appear in government and other offices in late 2001, Federal Bureau of Investigation agents concluded that a microbiologist and U.S. Army researcher, Bruce Ivins, was likely responsible and was believed to have acted alone. Ivins committed suicide in 2008, shortly before his planned arrest; a panel of scientists later cast doubt on the FBI’s evidence against him.

    There are other dangers. If the regime in North Korea were to collapse, some worry Pyongyang could unleash its biological arsenal, which may include smallpox.

    World War One saw the emergence of chemical warfare, World War Two the atomic bomb. The next era-defining super weapon, some experts have long warned us, could be biological.

    Peter Apps is Reuters global affairs columnist. He is founder and executive director of the Project for Study of the 21st Century; PS21, a non-national, non-partisan, non-ideological think tank in London, New York and Washington.

  52. DXer said

    North Korea has large chemical weapons stockpile, including VX …

    The Straits Times-Feb 24, 2017
    “North Korea is believed to have a large stockpile of VX, which can … as 13 types of biological weapons such as anthrax and bubonic plague.

  53. DXer said

    Veteran Egyptian jihadist now an al Qaeda leader in Syria

    Thomas Joscelyn | March 21, 2016

    Mabruk, captured by the CIA in 1998, had anthrax planning documents on his laptop.

    The article states:

    “Mabruk spoke with journalists at his trial, saying that Osama bin Laden had acquired chemical weapons and was planning to use them in the West.”

    This is a mistake. He said Zawahiri was planning to use anthrax. .

    • DXer said

      Let me immediately backpedal and correct myself from the post above. Mabruk, al-Najjar and Montasser Al-Zayat (the blind sheik’s lawyer) were discussing both biological (anthrax) and chemical weapons.

      And so the article does not contain a mistake as such. I would just emphasize that anthrax was a focus of the reports, which mostly went unnoticed and untranslated in the West.

      See, e.g.,

      DXer: The Blind Sheik’s Lawyer Montasser Al-Zayat Announced In 1999 That Ayman Zawahiri Would Use Anthrax Against US Targets To Retaliate For Imprisonment Of Senior EIJ Leaders, Most Notably Blind Sheik Abdel-Rahman
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on June 3, 2013

    • DXer said

      So with Mabruk back in the saddle and working for Ayman Zawahiri, it is really long past time for the FBI and CIA to get things right in Amerithrax.

    • DXer said

      Did bin Laden buy bioterror? / 1999 testimony says he did

      Erin McCormick, Lance Williams, Chronicle Staff Writers

      Published 4:00 am, Sunday, October 21, 2001

      Evidence in an Egyptian terrorism trial two years ago included claims that Osama bin Laden already had dangerous biological agents in his arsenal.

      Moreover, a ranking terrorist affiliated with bin Laden told a journalist during that trial that the Saudi-born financier of terror and his top aide, Islamic Jihad leader Dr. Ayman al-Zawahiri, had purchased biological and chemical agents and drawn up a list of 100 U.S. and Israeli targets on which to unleash them.

      Testimony in that trial and other court proceedings in the United States have told of bin Laden and his operatives negotiating to buy such deadly materials as anthrax, the Ebola virus and bomb-grade uranium for creating weapons of mass destruction.

      In U.S. trials this year, one former bin Laden deputy testified he met with black-market figures to try to buy a cylinder of enriched uranium that could be used in nuclear weapons construction, while another claimed al Qaeda was conducting chemical weapons experiments on dogs.

      However, there is much debate among terrorism experts about whether bin Laden’s network actually has such sophisticated weapons capabilities.

      “Everybody knows (bin Laden) has been trying to get his hands on whatever weapons he can,” said Harvey Kushner, an international terrorism expert and professor of criminology at Long Island State University. “Does he have them? We don’t know.”


      Ahmad Salamah Mabruk, military commander of Islamic Jihad and No. 2 to al- Zawahiri in that organization, claimed that he does.

      During the 1999 Egyptian trial of 107 suspected terrorists, Mabruk talked to a reporter from the Arabic-language newspaper al-Hayat about al Qaeda’s “biological and chemical weapons.”

      “He said to me that al-Zawahiri and bin Laden (had purchased) the weapons from countries in Eastern Europe,” reporter Mohammed Salah told The Chronicle in a phone interview from Cairo.

      Mabruk spoke of bin Laden and al-Zawahiri having a list of 100 targets worldwide, all related to the United States or Israel, Salah reported.

      “This was a big scoop in my opinion, but the Americans didn’t read this article,” Salah said. “They come now to try to understand what happened (in court) two years ago.”

      During the trial, Egyptian military investigators told the court that defendants had reported the purchase of dangerous biological agents by bin Laden associates, through the mail, for as little as $3,865, “shipping included.”

      Egyptian government documents detailing the confessions, described in the Arabic press, said that factories in Eastern Europe offered to sell the viruses that cause Ebola and salmonella poisoning to bin Laden’s associates — without asking what the group planned to do with them.

      The accused terrorists also claimed to have made agreements to buy “samples of anthrax” from a factory in Southeast Asia and a culture of the paralyzing botulinum bacteria from a lab in the Czech Republic for $7,500.


      Still, the 1999 claims that bin Laden had actually obtained biological and chemical weapons left authorities “a little bit confounded,” said Khalid Duran,

      a terrorism expert who has written about the 1999 Islamic Jihad case.

      “They wondered what’s actually going on,” he said. “Is this really true, does he really have these weapons, or is it some kind of boasting” by a terrorist facing a long prison sentence?

      Duran said he is personally convinced that al Qaeda has indeed obtained deadly substances that could be fashioned into weapons, but probably only small quantities.

      “The nature of his clandestine war requires secrecy, and (secrecy) is difficult to maintain when you have huge stores” of hazardous materials, he said.

      Elisa Harris, a former National Security Council staff director who specialized in preventing the proliferation of biological and chemical weapons,

      said she doubts al Qaeda has the technical know-how to handle true biological weapons.

      “Just because you have a vial of raw seed stock (for anthrax) doesn’t mean you have a weapon,” said Harris, now a research fellow at the University of Maryland.

      Kimberly McCloud, analyst with the Monterey Institute’s Center for Nonproliferation Studies, said bin Laden might easily acquire the capability for something like the recent anthrax mailings to the U.S. Senate and media outlets if he hooked up with another terrorist group or a nation, like Iraq, that has been researching such weapons for decades.

      “Even if bin Laden never had biological weapons capabilities, he could have connected with someone who did,” she said.

      Terrorism experts say getting nuclear or chemical weapons to work also would present huge technical challenges for an organization like al Qaeda.


      There have been numerous accounts of bin Laden’s attempts to acquire and master such weapons, both in open court testimony and in less reliable reports attributed to international intelligence agencies.

      — This year, at the trial of terrorists accused in the 1998 bombings of U. S. embassies in Africa, a former top bin Laden aide recounted being sent to start negotiations with a former Sudanese government official who claimed to be willing to sell a cylinder of uranium to al Qaeda for $1.5 million.

      Jamal Ahmed al-Fadl helped run al Qaeda’s finances until he got caught embezzling bin Laden money and became a U.S. government informant in 1996. He told the court he was sent to meet with former Sudanese President Salah Abdel al Mobruk in 1993 to examine the alleged nuclear material, contained in a 2- foot-long cylinder that bore a South African stamp.

      One of the former Sudanese official’s associates asked him, “Are you serious? You want to buy uranium?” al-Fadl recounted in his testimony. “I told him, ‘Yes. I know people. They are very serious, and they want to buy it.’ ”

      When asked in court why al Qaeda sought the purchase, al-Fadl explained, “It’s easy to kill more people with uranium.”

      After meeting with the alleged uranium dealers twice, al-Fadl said, he hooked them up with another bin Laden associate who planned to use an electronic device to test the cylinder. He said he never found out if the material was real or whether the purchase was completed.

      — Arabic press accounts, reportedly based on information leaked by Russian intelligence agencies in 1998, said bin Laden operatives once attempted to trade $30 million in cash and two tons of Afghan opium for Soviet warheads obtained by Chechen organized crime figures. Eventually, bin Laden planned to obtain or develop a portable, nuclear “suitcase bomb,” the reports said.

      — Ahmed Ressam, an Algerian who pleaded guilty to terrorism charges in connection with a failed plot to blow up Los Angeles International Airport, testified earlier this year that al Qaeda was experimenting with cyanide gas for use in terror attacks.

      In a trial in U.S. District Court in Manhattan, Ressam said he and other guerrilla fighters participated in an experiment at one of bin Laden’s Afghanistan training camps in which a dog was killed with cyanide gas. The men were preparing for a planned attack in which cyanide was to be pumped into the ventilation system of an office building, he said.

      — The New York Times quoted intelligence sources earlier this year as saying nerve gas experiments have been conducted on dogs, rabbits and other animals at a bin Laden camp for training terrorists in the use of chemical weapons. It said satellite surveillance photos and other information sources indicated that terrorists at the camp, called Abu Khabab, tested chemical and poison bombs on animals tethered to posts at firing ranges.

      — Terrorism expert Duran said he had learned of phone conversations among suspected al Qaeda operatives, monitored by German authorities, in which the men seemed to discuss barrels of a poison gas that the group had stockpiled somewhere in France.

      The suspected terrorists reportedly talked about an operation in which a suicide commando would be used to open the container and release the poison in an effort to kill “all living beings in a fairly wide radius.”

      Bin Laden himself has made it clear that he considers obtaining weapons of mass destruction a priority.

      “If I seek to acquire such weapons, this is a religious duty,” he told ABC News in 1998. “How we use them is up to us.”

    • DXer said

      Elusys Therapeutics, Inc. /

      FDA News Release

      FDA approves new treatment for inhalation anthrax,


      March 21, 2016

      “As preparedness is a cornerstone of any bioterrorism response, we are pleased to see continued efforts to develop treatments for anthrax,” said Edward Cox, M.D., M.P.H, director of the Office of Antimicrobial Products in FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research.

  54. DXer said

    “EDITORIAL from Korea Times.Yonhap News, Dec. 19, 2015

    “Pentagon rejects accusations that USFK lied about anthrax shipments,” Global Post, Yonhap News Agency
    on Dec 19, 2015

    “US carried out multiple anthrax tests in South Korea,” Dec.18, 2015
    Clandestine experiments described as part of Washington’s efforts to counter North Korea’s chemical and biological weapons

    “USFK lied about tests on anthrax,” Dec. 18, 2015

  55. DXer said

    Updated : 2015-08-06 17:31
    Osan Air Base inspected in anthrax case

    “Whenever we have doubtful points, we will ask the U.S. side for relevant material,” he told reporters.

    “Korea, U.S. probe Osan base over anthrax delivery,” Updated : 2015-08-06

    It will continue to analyze the background of the delivery and formulate measures to prevent any future recurrence, said Maj. Gen. Jang Kyung-soo, director-general for policy planning at Seoul’s Defense Ministry and cochairman for the team.
    “Biological defense cooperation will continue to ensure that our alliance remains ready to defend the Republic of Korea,” Marine Corps Maj. Gen. Robert Hedelund, Jang’s counterpart and assistant chief of staff for strategy, plans and policy at the U.S. Forces Korea said, vowing the program’s reliability and transparency.


    Isn’t this just public relations? If South Korea does not ask the US for copies of the testimony in Egypt about the supply of anthrax by North Korea to the Moro Group/ Al Qaeda, then their inquiries are wholly insufficient in service of their country.

    And upon such an inquiry, the US does not supply copies of that in-court testimony, then their “transparency” is wholly insufficient in service of their country.

    Good faith does not excuse lame execution — on either party’s part.

    My brother was a high official in the Navy stationed in South Korea, working under a mountain. He certainly would have understood the importance of providing his South Korean allies the information even if Dr. Burans from the Naval Reserve didn’t.

    • DXer said

      FedEx Korea apologizes for anthrax delivery
      The Korea Herald‎ – 4 hours ago

      The Korean unit of global air courier services firm offered an apology in an official document to the Korean Public Service and Transport Workers Union, which filed a complaint against FedEx Korea for failing to protect its workers and the public from hazardous materials.

      “We apologize to FedEx employees here, customers and people in the country for causing anxiety over the issue,” the company said. ***

      FedEx Korea said it stopped delivering all types of parcels categorized as select agents by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and also stopped delivery services for goods from U.S. military labs in the U.S. since June.

      “FedEx did not know what was in the package that the U.S. lab mistakenly sent. If we had known, we wouldn’t have taken the order,” the company said.


      The union withdrew the complaint after receiving the apology but it said that concerns remained over FedEx Korea’s safety measures.

  56. DXer said

    U.S. calls for enhancing defense against ‘very real’ biological weapons threats from N. Korea

    The U.S. shipment of live anthrax spores to South Korea was an “extremely regrettable” mistake that happened as the allies sought to enhance capabilities to cope with “very real and significant” biological weapons threats, a Pentagon official said Friday.

    “While this was an extremely regrettable incident, it is important to keep in mind that our alliance biological defense programs are designed to enhance U.S. and ROK readiness and defensive capabilities in the face of very real and significant biological weapons threats,” said Capt. Jeff A. Davis, a Pentagon spokesman.

    “We look forward to continuing to work with the Republic of Korea, and all of our allies and partners,” he said.

  57. DXer said

    S. Korea, U.S. set for 1st meeting to probe anthrax shipment

    South Korea wants related documents, video and photo data from the U.S. side as evidence, but the U.S. is maintaining that most of the relevant documents have already been destroyed.

    The U.S. also wants to limit the scope of the on-site inspection, according to ministry sources.

  58. DXer said

    Korea vows full probe into U.S. anthrax accident

    South Korea’s Defense Ministry pledged Friday to “promptly and exhaustively” investigate the U.S. military’s accidental shipment of a live anthrax sample to a U.S. base here, after the Pentagon released the outcome of its probe, calling the shipment an “inexcusable mistake.”

    “We will visit Osan Air Base at the earliest date to exhaustively look into the accidental shipment of the anthrax sample to the unit and check the outcome of the U.S. side’s probe into the case,” the ministry said in a press release.

    Military to probe anthrax case soon

    By Kang Seung-woo

    U.S. Forces Korea (USFK) also issued a statement vowing to continue working together with Korea to ensure that its biological defense programs will continue in a safe and effective manner.

    “Alliance biological defense programs are designed to enhance alliance readiness and defensive capabilities in the face of a very real and significant biological threat,” said Gen. Curtis Scaparrotti, the USFK commanding general.

    “The establishment of the ROK-U.S. alliance’s biological defense cooperation joint working group will ensure continued cooperation on biological defense programs.”

  59. DXer said

    US confirms live anthrax shipments to seven countries including S. Korea
    Posted on : Jul.25,2015 13:58 KSTModified on : Jul.25,2015

    “USFK has said this anthrax shipment was the first, but we are planning to investigate what has occurred in the past,” a ministry official said. “There will be no restrictions on the investigation focus.”


    The DOD Review Committee, chaired by Vahid Majidi, the former top Amerithrax scientist, had a truncated focus that did not extend back in time further than it did.

    Will the South Korean probe have a similarly restricted focus?

    Or will it address this issue whether North Korea sold the Moro Front virulent anthrax, as explained by Dr. Ayman Zawahiri’s Egyptian Islamic Jihad shura members and confidantes in court testimony in 1999?

    Al Qaeda anthrax lab director Yazid Sufaat does not deny to me responsibility for the Fall 2001 anthrax mailings.

    He is on trial for terrorism.

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

  60. DXer said

    Korea today vows full and exhaustive probe.

  61. DXer said

    Once you realize that much of the Ames anthrax that was distributed — after irradiation — was not in fact dead, you appreciate that the FBI’s analysis in Amerithrax rested on a faulty premise.

    Indeed …

    Bruce Ivins experienced repeated irradiation failures with virulent Ames anthrax
    Posted by Lew Weinstein on June 13, 2015

    “More bad irradiation news” – USAMRIID’s Bruce Ivins found that sometimes samples that had tested negative then upon retesting came up “hot”
    Posted by Lew Weinstein on June 19, 2015

    Bruce Ivins at USAMRIID found it amazing that 6 million rads wasn’t killing the spores
    Posted by Lew Weinstein on June 13, 2015

    Is CDC going to tell USA Today’s Alison Young about the 2007 probe of the earlier misshipment of anthrax? Bruce Ivins asked: “Does this refer to any material that DPG sent here for irradiation, then was sent back?”
    Posted on June 18, 2015

  62. DXer said

    Oh, come on, FBI, you know you want to pay me $5 million dollars.
    Let’s see if we can’t make this a win-win and go home.

    Mobster Tied To Boston Art Heist Assails FBI Tactics

    The Hartford mobster who the FBI believes might be the last, best hope of recovering half a billion dollars in art stolen from Boston’s Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum says the tactics that authorities are using to force his cooperation amount to “outrageous government misconduct.

    Robert “Bobby the Cook” Gentile, who the FBI believes once had two of the stolen paintings and might be able to help unravel the continuing mystery of the missing art, complains in a new court filing that the FBI has twice used informants to induce him to commit crimes only so that agents and prosecutors could use threats of imprisonment to persuade him to talk about the stolen art.


    Gentile attorney A. Ryan McGuigan of Hartford argues in a long-shot attempt to win dismissal of charges related to Gentile’s alleged sale of a gun to one of the informants that the FBI is abusing its formidable law enforcement power by contriving crimes solely to advance the investigation of an unrelated crime.


    What is not in Gentile’s motion to dismiss is an explanation of why, over the past five years, Gentile has twice taken the bait offered by FBI informants and allegedly committed crimes.


    Authorities have said that Gentile is a sworn member of a Boston Mafia crew. Gentile denies that charge, too, saying that he simply cooked and ran card games for gangsters.


    Mr. Gentile, didn’t your lawyer, Attorney McGuigan, tell you (1) not to commit any crimes upon being released after your most recent conviction; and (2) most anyone suggesting you do likely was an undercover?


    If you didn’t take the advice (which I’ll presume was given), how about taking a little responsibility for your choices and being a grown-up about things?

    Perhaps giving your lawyer’s father/son a contingency on recovery of a $5 million reward was a mistake.

    Perhaps it is a conflict of interest requiring Attorney McGuigan’s recusal. I’ll leave that decision to the legal beagles.

    I think the FBI should take a backhoe and ground penetrating radar to the location of Mr. Gentile’s old used car lot (dating to 1991). My source (the nice lady at the business across the interchange from it) says it was razed a couple a years prior to the FBI taking an interest in Mr. Gentile.

    • DXer said

      DEFENDANT’S MEMORANDUM OF LAW IN SUPPORT OF MOTION TO DISMISS, I think, should have started out with the juicy quote from “Merlino,” the decision in the First Circuit Court of Appeals involving alleged entrapment in the prosecution for armored car robbery of David Turner, Carmello Merlino and other members of the crew. That sting, conducted by FBI Special Agent Neil Cronin, was in fact motivated to a significant part by investigation of the Isabella Gardner heist.

      I personally think that it is Mr. Gentile’s conduct that “shocks the conscience.” The FBI, here, was just doing what we pay them to do. While the FBI has been unsuccessful in locating the paintings, the FBI seems to have been a pretty legitimate, straightforward — and predictable — undercover sting. The wiretaps will, it seems, make out Mr. Gentile to be a dangerous man — the kind of guy who says something like “Do you know who you are talking to?” who then sells a man a handgun hidden his pillow to commit a serious crime. The story goes under the headline “Foiled again” in news of the weird. The feature highlights the capers of stupid criminals.

      Attorney McGuigan — and I believe his father has a 1/3 contingency for return of the paintings — lucidly sets forth his argument. First, though, he sets the factual background:

      “Beginning in the spring of 2010, Mr. Gentile cooperated with the Government in its investigation into the Museum robbery. He participated in monitored conversations with the widow of the alleged organized crime figure [Elene Guarente] who purportedly gave Mr. Gentile some of the stolen paintings. He also met with another associate of the decedent, in Portland, Maine [the fellow who moved to near my hometown while recuperating from a car accident], and their meeting was also monitored by the FBI. Both of these individuals stated that they had seen some of the paintings in the dead man’s possession. Neither ever associated Gentile with the paintings. During this period, the US Attorney’s office in Boston furnished Mr. Gentile with a cooperation agreement, immunizing him from prosecution concerning the Museum robbery. A similar agreement was furnished by the Connecticut Office of the United States Attorney in the same matter.

      On or about November 10, 2010, Mr. Gentile, through counsel, turned over to investigators a letter addressed to him and purportedly authored by an individual who was then serving a lengthy federal prison sentence for a 1998 Massachusetts armored car robbery. On information and belief, the FBI had long ago identified this incarcerated individual as a possible participant in the Museum robbery and failed to secure his cooperation in the investigation. In this letter, the incarcerated individual asked Mr. Gentile to contact his girlfriend and provided her number. In December of 2010, shortly after testifying before the grand jury pursuant to his subpoena, Mr. Gentile engaged in a series of phone calls with the woman who identified herself as the incarcerated individual’s girlfriend, wherein she claimed to act as that person’s intermediary, attempting to set up a channel of communication.

      Throughout January of 2011, FBI agents proposed to Mr. Gentile that the time came that he would meet with an emissary from the incarcerated individual [the handsome and very dangerous David Turner], he would bring with him an informant supplied by the Bureau, that Mr. Gentile would vouch for the informant, and then step aside and let the informant conduct any discussions concerning the whereabouts of the paintings.

      On or about February 7, 2011, the FBI requested that Mr. Gentile call the incarcerated individual’s girlfriend again, and he agreed. The call was consensually monitored by the agents. The woman informed Mr. Gentile that the incarcerated individual wanted him to meet with two of his associates in Boston. In a subsequent call, consensually monitored by Government agents, Mr. Gentile suggested that he meet with her instead, and not the two men, and she ended the conversation. The FBI subsequently again demanded that Mr. Gentile bring their informant with him to the proposed meeting with the incarcerated individual’s two associates, and he refused, on the grounds that he believed such an action would expose both himself and his family to profound physical danger, as it was well known that the men in question were violent criminal associates of the incarcerated individual. Subsequently, Mr. Gentile’s contact with the Government with respect to his cooperation in the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum investigation ceased.

      [Editor’s comment: Mr. Gentile seems to have made a prudent choice in this instance; a lot of people in this matter have ended up stuffed in a trunk or otherwise disposed].

      The Government’s involvement with Mr. Gentile resumed in the fall of 2011, but now he was its unknowing target, rather than its cooperating witness, The same FBI agent who supervised the C,I.’s solicitation of handgun from Mr. Gentile four years later in the instant case, dispatched another informant, similarly wired for sound, with the purpose of inducing Mr. Gentile into selling his own prescription drugs.

      The informant also attempted to get Mr. Gentile to sell him a firearm, which Mr. Gentile refused to do, The informant continued to prod Mr. Gentile into speaking about the paintings’ whereabouts, despite the latter seeming to know nothing more than what was in the newspapers, The recordings procured by the Government and their own accompanying transcripts reveal the informant conversing with his handlers before and after each meeting with Mr. Gentile, The recordings indicate that the informant had been instructed to raise the subject of guns and paintings with Mr. Gentile,

      On one such recording, an agent states to the informant, concerning the drug transactions, “best case scenario, we got Gentile over a battle [sic – presumably “over a barrel”] and he cooperated,” before discussing an upcoming raid on “the guy from Worcester.” This event was the subject of a subsequent recorded conversation between the informant and Mr. Gentile, when the informant provided Mr. Gentile with a newspaper article concerning the Government’s raid on the Worcester, Massachusetts home of another individual linked to the paintings, The same recording discloses the informant’s handler asking the informant how Mr. Gentile reacted to the article, and indicates that the Government had provided the newspaper to the informant before sending him off to meet Mr. Gentile,

      Mr. Gentile was arrested in February, 2012 for a series of sales of his prescription drugs to the informant, all captured by recording equipment and monitored by the same FBI agents who supervised the C.I.’s alleged purchase of a gun from Mr. Gentile three years later in the instant case. Subsequent execution of a search warrant at Mr. Gentile’s residence in Manchester, CT turned up the firearms and silencers that were the basis for the additional charges in the case. Interestingly, pursuant to that warrant, which was nominally for additional evidence of narcotics-related crimes, the FBI excavated the yard and employed ground-penetrating radar devices. Present at the execution of the search warrant was Mr. Anthony Amore, the security director for the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. Mr. Amore was also present for at least one post-arrest interview with Mr. Gentile.

      Mr. Gentile ultimately pled guilty to the narcotics and firearms charges. Entrapment was never claimed, as it is not now. But it was always Mr. Gentile’s position that the Governrnent’s over-involvement with the orchestration of the offense conduct by means of the use of informants was pretextual, in that the Government engineered the offense conduct solely for the purpose of coercing Mr. Gentile into somehow producing the stolen paintings, with staunching sales of illegal narcotics in Connecticut not at all furnishing a good faith basis for the prosecution.

      It is Mr. Gentile’s position that the instant firearms prosecution was similarly engineered solely for the purpose of coercing cooperation into the art heist investigation, rather than removing an armorer-to-felons from our midst.”

      [Comment: Yes. But that, without more, is not grounds for dismissal.]

      “The alleged firearms transaction with the C.I. that is the subject of the instant indictment occurred within a week of the fifteenth anniversary of the Gardner Museum robbery, and the related renewal of interest in the case in the media, just as his prior arrest occurred at the same time of year in 2012. Late winter is apparently the season for confidential informants to approach Mr. Gentile on behalf of their Government handlers wired for sound, armed with Government issued cash, with the purpose of inducing cooperating with respect to the wholly unrelated Gardner Museum robbery.”

      “The last time this transpired, Mr. Gentile was 75 years old, and a Government agent informed him shortly after his 2012 arrest that he would die in prison. Because that did not happen on the last go-round, the Government seems to be making good on its promise now that Mr. Gentile is 79. The Government’s serial efforts to leverage Mr. Gentile’s cooperation in this manner constitutes improper coercion such that it constitutes outrageous Government misconduct and a violation of Mr. Gentile’s Fifth Amendment due process rights, and the indictment must be dismissed.”

      Attorney McGuigan summarizes the law:

      “The Second Circuit has long held that sting operations or other undercover operations designed to snare criminal defendants by means of deceiving them, standing alone, do not constitute due process violations.”

      Attorney McGuigan writes:

      “The Government’s tenacity and compulsive repetition of prior conduct indicates that should Mr. Gentile ever be a free man again, he can expect an acquaintance turning up on his doorstep in late winter, in time for the media’s anniversary stories of the Gardner robbery, wearing recording equipment and proposing a criminal joint venture, with the same cast of FBI agents hovering at a discreet distance.”

      [ Comment: Ha! It is the defendant who is demonstrating “compulsive and repetitive conduct” that is, in fact, a threat to public safety. We like it when our FBI Agents are dogged trying to solve difficult mysteries; we don’t like it when dangerous criminals return promptly to committing crimes.]

      At page 19, Attorney McGuigan finally begins to bring his argument home. To good effect, he turns to cite language from a First Circuit case involving an armored car robbery sting involving David Turner and this same art heist:

      “[P]roof that the Government manufactured the crime out of whole cloth, not for purposes of exposing and prosecuting a dangerous criminal, but to pressure him into becoming a Government informant, might arguably be shocking enough to
      resulting indictment.” (emphasis added). Merlino, supra, 2000 WL 294880 at *2.

      He writes:

      This investigation may appear to be a case of “government agents induc[ing] the sale of firearms in order to make firearms arrests,” but here the Government was inducing the sale of firearms to coerce cooperation in its investigation into a twenty- five year old art theft that has become a white whale to the prosecuting authority, and if the harpoons injure a collateral target such as Mr. Gentile, then the Government’s unconcern is similarly Ahab-like.”

    • DXer said

      $100,000 REWARD


      Troubled by the fact that the two most valuable Isabella Gardner paintings, by far, were ruined (making recovery of the $5 million reward problematic? Fret no more. Tony the security director has a simpler, narrower, related proposition: Return the eagle for $100,000. Go borrow your friend’s metal detector and point it the wall and ground. You need only provide the information leading to its recovery. You don’t have to bring a shovel or sledge hammer.

      I think this revised focus is very astute.

  63. DXer said


    Kim Jong-Un Testing Anthrax On His Own People?

    Did Pyongyang accidentally release pictures of its WMD labs? Or was the Kim regime making a not-so-subtle threat?
    North Korea on Monday invited every member of the U.S. Congress to inspect the Pyongyang Bio-Technical Institute.

    “Come here right now, with all the 535 members of the House of Representatives and the Senate as well as the imbecile secretaries and deputy secretaries of the government who have made their voices hoarse screaming for new sanctions,” said a spokesman of the North’s National Defense Commission, according to the official Korean Central News Agency.


    There have been eyewitness accounts more detailed and gruesome than this. But are they true? “We have had credible witness testimony that human experimentation has occurred, especially on the disabled, but we do not have substantiation yet,” Greg Scarlatoiu, executive director of the Committee for Human Rights in North Korea, told The Daily Beast Tuesday.

    Activist groups are arranging for Lee to present his evidence to the European Parliament soon, but not everyone is convinced that this defector is the one to finally offer proof. As Scarlatoiu said of Lee, “I’m skeptical.”

  64. DXer said

    North Korea Invites US to Visit Pyongyang, Look for Biological Weapons

    Read more:

  65. DXer said

    Of course, asking the FBI this question is a waste of time. Its lead investigator for years confirms that it is concealing evidence in the case investigating the Fall 2001 anthrax mailings.

    Former FBI director alleges agency concealing evidence in anthrax case
    Published April 16,

  66. DXer said

    Kim Jong Un Tours Pesticide Facility Capable of Producing Biological Weapons: A 38 North Special Report
    By Melissa Hanham
    09 July 2015

    “Melissa Hanham joined CNS as a Research Associate in the East Asia Nonproliferation Program (EANP) in 2011. Her regional interests include the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, North Korean WMD procurement and proliferation networks, and East Asian security. She also studies South Korean and Japanese nuclear exports and East and Southeast Asian export control systems.

    Melissa supports CNS’ research by investigating new techniques in geospatial analysis, incorporating imagery and other remote sensing data, 3D modeling, and mapping. Previously, Melissa worked for International Crisis Group in Beijing, China and Seoul, South Korea.

    Melissa holds an MA in International Security Policy and East Asia from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs, and a BA in International Studies from Johns Hopkins University. She also earned a Certificate of Nonproliferation from the Monterey Institute of International Studies. She speaks English, Chinese, and French.”

  67. DXer said

    (LEAD) N. Korea’s pesticide institute capable of producing anthrax: U.S. expert
    2015/07/10 02:52

    By Chang Jae-soon


    Hanham also said the images showed that much of the equipment at the research center violates export control laws based on the dual-use control lists of the Australia Group, a coalition of 41 countries aimed at preventing the spread of equipment usable in chemical or biological weapons.

    “The modern equipment seen in the images reveals that North Korea is not only maintaining a biological weapons capability, but also has an active large-scale sanctions busting effort to illicitly procure the equipment for the Pyongyang Bio-technical Institute,” she said.

    North Korea: Pesticide Factory May Have Sinister Purpose, Report Says
    By CHOE SANG-HUNJULY 9, 2015

    A pesticide factory recently visited by the North Korean leader Kim Jong-un may be used to produce biological weapons, like anthrax, according to an online report posted Thursday. On June 6, the state-run North Korean news media reported that when Mr. Kim visited the Pyongyang Biotechnical Institute, he was so happy with scientists’ work there in developing insecticides that he “wanted to carry them on his back.” But 38 North, a website run by Johns Hopkins University’s U.S.-Korea Institute, said photographs North Korean media released with the reports of Mr. Kim’s visit showed that North Korea has been importing dual-use equipment. “It is hard to avoid the conclusion that the institute is intended to produce military-size batches of anthrax,” it said. “Regardless of whether the equipment is being used to produce anthrax today, it could in the near future.”

    North Korea may have capacity to produce anthrax, analyst says

    An analysis of photos of Kim Jong Un from June indicated the leader was responding to news of anthrax shipments to U.S. bases in South Korea from a secretive biotech institute.
    By Elizabeth Shim | July 9, 2015 at 2:02 PM

  68. DXer said

    Under Kim Jong Un, North Korea Tested Chemical Weapons On Disabled Children, Defector Claims
    By Michelle FlorCruz on July 06 2015 9:11 AM ED


    The Reuters today contains the same information. The story has not yet been advanced. I attribute the delay in development of the story only partly to the difficulty in sourcing due to the subject matter. It was also a holiday weekend when both reporters and quotable sources were off for the weekend (and here in the US were off for the July 4 holiday).

    • DXer said

      The AP story, too, does not go beyond the reporting in the Telegraph.

      Though I don’t recall previously seeing it mentioned:

      “In February, South Korean intelligence warned that Pyongyang had stepped up biological and chemical warfare drills, carrying out at least a dozen large-scale exercises in the previous year.”

      North Korean defector set to testify on regime’s use of humans to test biological and chemical weapons

      The Associated Press | July 6, 2015 10:03 AM ET

    • DXer said

      Defector claims North Korea carries out human chemical weapons tests
      By Eilish O’Gara 7/6/15 at 4:05 PM

      Newsweek excerpt:

      Lee’s case however, could be the first in which visual and written evidence carried over the border can prove the allegations, which would violate international humanitarian law.

      John Sifton, Asia advocacy director for Human Rights Watch, told Newsweek it is not yet known if Lee traveled alone or with his family but said that he will remain in Finland to give testimony before the European parliament. The date for his testimony has yet be confirmed.

      Provided Lee’s evidence can be formally verified, Sifton says, his testimony would be the first time real evidence had emerged of North Korea’s human scientific experimentation.

      “He is not the first defector we have come across who has allegations of human rights abuses inside the camps of North Korea,” Sifton says, “But if his evidence is about scientific experimentation, then it’s completely new.”

      Sifton hopes the exposure of such crimes will have a psychological effect on the North Korean regime.

      “His account will be crucial in keeping the idea of the ICC [International Criminal Court] floating around the heads of regime figures and will prevent them from committing some of the more gross abuses against its people,” Sifton says.

      Although the exact date of Lee’s testimony has not yet been confirmed, Sifton believes, “the European parliament will be the best platform for him to give evidence. It will be a great place for the public to hear and learn about what he has to say too.”

  69. DXer said

    Kim tests weapons on disabled people: Kids poisoned, claims defector
    TYRANT Kim Jong-un is testing deadly chemical weapons on disabled children, it is claimed. July 25

    A scientist who fled North Korea says poisons such as anthrax were being tested on humans.

    The expert, known only as Mr Lee, defected to Finland and is set to give evidence to the European parliament.

    A human rights group supporting him said he had escaped the dictatorship because he “felt sceptical about his research”.

    Daniel Pinkston, of The International Crisis Group in Seoul, said action should be taken against Kim.

    He said: “If it can be verified that such experiments have taken place, then that would seem to violate international humanitarian law.”

    A previous defector, Im Cheon-yong, also claimed chemical weapons were tested on humans “to see how they died”.

  70. DXer said

    My friend astutely points out that YONHAP NEWS AGENCY anagrams to A PHONY NEWS AGENCY.

    I’ve been reading John William’s 2015 WORD NERD, the recent book by the former head of the National Scrabble Association.

    He has an appendix with some of his favorite anagrams listed.

    Suitable in their own way to my interests:

    True crime and intelligence analysis …


    Mute swans:


    Litigation and lobbying:


    Swing trading:




    Bounty hunting




    And last but not least:


    • DXer said

      I like palindromes and wrote this palindromic poem.

      (A palindrome reads the same forwards and backwards)

      It’s titled



      “ED ODE”

      We panic in a pew.
      We’ll let Mom tell Lew.

      Reviled did I live, said I, as evil did I deliver.
      Revered now I live on. O did I no evil, I wonder ever?

      Kayak salad, Alaska yak.
      Campus Motto: Bottoms up, Mac

      Wow! Sis! Wow!
      Wonton on salad? Alas, no, not now!

      “Desserts, sis?” (Sensuousness is stressed).
      Desserts I desire not, so long no lost one rise distressed.

      “Do nine men interpret?” Nine men, I nod.
      Doc, note I dissent. A fast never prevents a fatness. I diet on cod.

      May a moody baby doom a yam?
      Marge let a moody baby doom a telegram.

      Oh who was it I saw, oh who?
      Oozy rat in a sanitary zoo?

      Was it a car or a cat I saw?
      War! I saw ‘Nam — man was I raw.

      Tis in a DeSoto sedan I sit.
      To Idi Amin I am an idiot.

      Race fast, safe car.
      Rats live on no evil star.

      Toot! Toot!
      Too hot to hoot.

      Stop, Syrian! I start at rats in airy spots.
      Stop! Murder us not, tonsured rumpots.

      Trap a rat! Stare, piper, at star apart!
      Trade ye no mere moneyed art.

      If I had a hi-fi!? If I had a hi-fi!?
      I, madam, I made radio. So I dared! Am I mad? Am I?

      Ah! A mop, a man, a map: Omaha!
      Was it felt? I had a hit left, I saw.

      Solo gigolos.
      So many dynamos.

      Oh, no! Don Ho.
      Ogre, flog a golfer. Go!

      Ten animals I slam in a net.
      Pets, Ed, I sidestep.

      Nurse, save rare vases, run!
      Now, sir, a war is won.

      Mad? Am I, madam?
      Madam, in Eden, I’m Adam!

      Satan, oscillate my metallic sonatas.
      Are we not drawn onwards, we few, drawn on to new era?

      Ma handed Edna ham.
      Ma is as selfless as I am.

  71. DXer said

    “Muklis and Al Ghozi were reportedly classmates at the training facilities of Al Qaida in Afghanistan. ‘They allegedly both know about demolition and anthrax application in biochemical warfare,’ an intelligence report prepared by Senior Supt. Rodolfo Mendoza Jr., former chief of the Philippine National Police intelligence branch, said.”

    Al Ghozi is most wanted man in southeast Asia
    By Our Correspondent
    July 25, 2003

    A report by the Intelligence Service of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (Isafp) says his admission of his involvement in the bombings in Metro Manila on December 30, 2000 that killed 22 civilians, led to the arrest last May of Muklis Yunos, allegedly a bomb expert trained by the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF).

    The December 30, 2000 bombing was supposedly the first major Jamaah Islamiya operation in the Philippines. Muklis and Al Ghozi were reportedly classmates at the training facilities of Al Qaida in Afghanistan. “They allegedly both know about demolition and anthrax application in biochemical warfare,” an intelligence report prepared by Senior Supt. Rodolfo Mendoza Jr., former chief of the Philippine National Police intelligence branch, said.

    Muklis Yunos, who reportedly received training on use of anthrax as a biological weapon in Afghanistan according to Philippine intelligence reports, was arrested on May 25, 2003, and cooperated with authorities over a bucket of spicy Kentucky Fried Chicken. I have long wondered if Muklis, a bomb-making expert, was the Filipino-looking gentleman who was bragging about his skill in processing anthrax.

    As described in US News, a former reporter from the Kabul Times met a Filipino-looking gentleman carrying papers from Zawahiri and bragging about his ability to manipulate anthrax. The man apparently was Hambali’s lieutenant, Muklis Yunos, who had been Hambali’s right-hand man and was in charge of special operations for the Philippine Moro Islamic Liberation Front (”MILF”). British reporter Philip Smucker, explained that the Afghan reporter working with him spoke fluent Arabic and made regular undercover trips into Afghanistan from Pakistan. He had visited three functioning al Qaeda camps, at grave risk to his life. Smucker explains that his colleague had landed in a Kabul hotel with a Filipino scientist who had a signed letter from al Qaeda’s number two, Dr. Ayman al Zawahiri, authorizing him to help the network develop biological weapons. The man at the hotel had described his own efforts to develop an “anthrax bomb.” Filipino Muklis Yunos was an explosives expert who had participated with Yazid Sufaat in the December 2000 church bombings. Upon his arrest in May 2003, Philippine intelligence said he had received anthrax training in Afghanistan. Perhaps he was who the journalist encountered.

    Alternatively, maybe it was Sufaat, I don’t know. Either way, it is evidence that Sufaat was trying to develop an “anthrax bomb.”

    Thought question: If you can load anthrax into a bomb, can’t you load anthrax into a letter?

    2014 Straits Times report : Into what weapons did Yazid Sufaat attempt to load anthrax?
    Posted on February 23, 2014

    • DXer said

      As I continued throughout 2002 and 2003 to explain Al Qaeda’s purchase of anthrax and Yazid Sufaat’s role, in Amerithrax, the FBI was draining Maryland ponds and the FBI’s anthrax smelling bloodhounds were raiding a dog grooming parlor.

      Al Qaeda, Anthrax, and Ayman Zawahiri
      by Ross
      Monday Jun 16th, 2003 2:06 AM

      After 9/11, Yazid Sufaat traveled to Afghanistan and Pakistan to work for the Taliban Medical Brigade and to continue his work with anthrax.(17) As described in US News, a former reporter from the Kabul Times apparently actually met Sufaat, without realizing it, while traveling near Kabul in October 2001, perceiving him as Filipino.(18) The fellow was carrying papers from Zawahiri and bragging about his ability to manipulate anthrax. (19) Sufaat was arrested in December 2001 upon his return to Malaysia.(20) Newsweek reported that a “second wave” involving biological attacks had been thwarted upon the arrest of Al Qaeda members who had been intended to provide logistical support.(21) Muklis Yunos, the head of MILF’s special operations group who according to Phillipine intelligence reports was said to have received training on use of anthrax as a biological weapon in Afghanistan, was arrested on May 25, 2003.

      The CIA has known of Zawahiri’s plans to use anthrax for a half decade. The confidante and right-hand man of Dr. Ayman Zawahiri admitted that Zawahiri succeeded in obtaining anthrax and intended to use it against US targets.(22) Another senior Al Qaeda member (a shura or policy-making council member no less) was working for the Egyptian intelligence services and he confirmed the report in a sworn lengthy confession. (23) Even Zawahiri’s attorney in 1999 said that Bin Laden and Zawahiri were likely to resort to the biological and chemical agents they possessed given the extradition pressure senior Al Qaeda leaders faced. (24) A recently released islamist who had been a close associate of Zawahiri said that Zawahiri spent a decade and had made 15 separate attempts to recruit the necessary expertise to weaponize anthrax in Russia and the Middle East.(25) The US Army recipe was not used, and obtaining the unprocessed Ames strain of anthrax used does not pose much of an obstacle or warrant the weight given it by some press accounts.(26) There was lax control over the distribution of the Ames strain that was used, especially in light of the fact that transfers were not even required to be recorded prior to 1997.(27)

      Al Qaeda’s anthrax production plans on Khalid Mohammed’s computer did not evidence knowledge of advanced techniques in the most efficient biological weapons.(28) Under the optimal method, there is no electrostatic charge; in the case of the anthrax used in the mailings, there was an electrostatic charge(29) Although there was a dominance of single spores and a trillion spore concentration, there were clumps as large as 40 – 100 microns. (Spores must be no bigger than 5 microns to be inhalable.) As Kenneth Alibek, the former head of Russia’s anthrax production program, explained on March 31, 2003 in response to a written question, “This anthrax wasn’t sophisticated, didn’t have coatings, had electric charge and many other things.” (30) Many point to the trillion spore concentration as extraordinary. It is far simpler, however, to achieve a trillion spore concentration in the production of a few grams than in industrial processing typical of a state sponsored lab.(31) Until addressed by a November 2002 article by Scott Shane of the Baltimore Sun (which then was reinforced by his April 11, 2003 story on the results of reverse engineering at Dugway Proving Ground in Utah), the “trillion spore” issue was at the heart of a lot of mistaken theories of the matter concluding that state sponsorship was necessarily indicated. The reported finding at Dugway undermines the argument of both the “bomb Iraq” crowd and the liberals focused on Dr. Steve Hatfill who object to US biodefense research because they view it as being useful for offensive purposes.

      Khalid Mohammed says that Zacarias Moussaoui’s inquiries about crop dusting may have related to Yazid Sufaat’s anthrax manufacturing plans. (32) Athough the details of the documents on Mohammed’s computer may (or may not) point to possible difficulties in aerial dispersal, they are fully consistent with the product used in the anthrax mailings. Al Qaeda had both the means and opportunity.

      Anthrax Lab Director Yazid Sufaat Wrote This Letter Of Introduction For Zacarias Moussaoui, Who Made The Cropduster Inquiries
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on January 23, 2012

      Excerpt from KSM’s Detainee Assessment

    • DXer said

      Author Kenneth Conboy in The Second Front mentions the four-month Ayman Zawahiri’s stay in Malaysia on his way from Sudan to Afghanistan.

      In The Second Front, Kenneth J. Conboy explains that Yazid Sufaat took over a room in Omar Hospital (near Kandahar) while waiting in May 2001 for the equipment he had amassed to reach Kandahar.
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on May 9, 2011

  72. DXer said

    In interrogation, KSM’s southeast Asian counterpart Hambali, who supervised Al Qaeda’s anthrax program, said that the Moro Front Special Operations leader Muklis Yunos was reimbursed by KSM for the ammonium nitrate bought by Al Qaeda anthrax lab director Yazid Sufaat in 2000 — with reimbursement owing because it was unauthorized.

    Click to access oct2703.pdf

    “Specifically, the Hashim Salamat, the leader of the MILF, Yusof Alongan, the head of the MILF Finance Committee, and a man by the name of Mukhlis Yunos – who is now in Filipino custody – was the head of the MILF special operations group, a man who worked very closely with JI in a num ber of organizations, including one of the first operations mounted by JI in the Philippines which was in December 30th of 2000. Soon after JI bombed 30 churches in Indonesia, JI moved their operational members to Manila where they bombed five significant targets in Manila, and these targets were taken with the assistance of the MILF special operations group headed by Mukhlis Yunos.”

    In interrogation, Muklis Yunos said he was trained in making anthrax weapons. Was he vaccinated like Yazid Sufaat and Yazid’s two assistants?

    See also

    Luck and Diligence Bring Arrest Of an Elusive Philippine Militant
    Share on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on Google PlusShare via EmailMore Options

    By Ellen Nakashima June 16, 2003

    [Muklis Yunos] is also accused of collaborating with Jemaah Islamiah, a radical Islamic group linked to terrorist attacks throughout Southeast Asia. Police say he told them that he has had a direct relationship with Jemaah Islamiah’s operations chief, Hambali, since 1987. The two met when Yunos trained in the artillery division of an al Qaeda camp in Saddah, Afghanistan, from 1987 to 1989, a senior police official said.

    An explosives expert who has trained Moro front recruits in the southern Philippines, Yunos helped Hambali and another Jemaah Islamiah operative, Fathur Rahman Ghozi, carry out the Manila attack, which killed 22 people and injured more than 100, the police official said.

    “For the Philippine government to actually land this guy is very important,” said a Western diplomat in the region. “He’s the classic example of a guy who has links that may stretch back many, many years to regional and international terrorist organizations.”

  73. DXer said

    In June 2002, I posted an inquiry about information concerning Yazid Sufaat from his former classmates. (Maurice Clayton was my cat and he allowed me to post under his account).

    I mentioned Yazid Sufaat’s connection to the Moro Front. I pointed out that Yazid Sufaat bought explosives for them.

    At one point, I got a response from someone who says he knew that Zacarias Moussaoui was in New Jersey the weekend of July 4th.

    When Zacarias finally went on trial, the timeline did not extend back to July 4th and so I was never able to corroborate the account.!topic/

    anthrax inquiry — Yazid Sufaat of Sacramento State (Class of 1987)
    1 post by 1 author in

    Maurice Sign in to reply

    anthrax — $2.5 million reward/looking for classmates of Yazid Sufaat
    Graduated California State University — Sacramento in 1987 Age 37.
    Pathologist/biochemist/microbiologist. Former Malaysian Army
    Captain. Gave Zacarias M. $35,000 and a cover. (as Infocus Tech

    FBI hasn’t sought extradition. US investigators now believe part of
    9/11 planning done in Malaysia. Hijackers stayed at his condo outside
    of Kuala Lumpur. Arrested on December 9 upon his return from Pakistan
    (and Afghanistan) after he arrived in Thailand and went to travel to
    Malaysia. Member of Jemmah Islamiyah, a group suspect of planning an
    armed struggle to form an Islamic state across Malaysia, Indonesia and
    the southern Philippines. Connection to Moro Front (e.g., bought
    explosives for them). Travelled with papers from Zawahiri.
    Filipino-looking man bumped into former Kabul Times reporter in
    Afghanistan last Fall who then reported on the incident in the US
    News. Claimed to be expert in manipulating anthrax. Has relatives
    / friends in New Jersey? Am I missing anything? Wrong about any of
    the above? Are any of his classmates out there? Who do you know who
    knows someone who knows someone who took biology classes with him.

    • DXer said

      Did Yazid Sufaat simply purchase virulent Ames from a North Korea supplier through his company Green Labs? What does Yazid Sufaat himself say?

      Yazid Sufaat says that, contrary to some media reports, he was successful in developing anthrax, but prefers other bugs; he views anthrax as good for sabotaging, but not killing
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on April 30, 2015

      Yazid Sufaat was happy with the anthrax work when he stayed with KSM for 6 days in 2001 and when he reported to Dr. Ayman on the results of his research with virulent anthrax in August 2001 with Hambali; in his correspondence with DXer, he seems happy today also (and very much in love).
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on May 1, 2012

    • DXer said

      Feb 2002 Asia Times articles I linked in the June 2002 Sacramento post inquiring about Yazid Sufaat, who I first nominated as the processor of the mailed anthrax in February 2002.

      The Osama bin Laden and al-Qaeda of Southeast Asia
      By Marc Erikson

      The director of the United States’ Federal Bureau of Investigation, Robert S Mueller III, said last Thursday that investigators believe the September 11 terror attacks were planned in part by al-Qaeda operatives in Malaysia. Prior to that, only Germany, where three of the suicide bombers lived, and Afghanistan, Pakistan and the United Arab Emirates had been pinpointed as planning and logistics bases.

      Other US officials said last week that they had evidence that a US (California State University, Sacramento)-educated biochemist and retired Malaysian army captain, Yazid Sufaat, 37, provided US$35,000 in Kuala Lumpur in the fall of 2000 to Zacarias Moussaoui, a French national of Moroccan descent, who has been charged in Alexandria, Virginia, with conspiring with the September 11 hijackers. Sufaat is also said to have met in January 2000 with two of the hijackers, Khalid Almidhar and Nawaf Alhamzi, who piloted the plane that struck the Pentagon. He is among two dozen alleged Muslim extremists detained in Malaysia since December.

      That’s the latest. Along with arrests in Singapore, Malaysia and the Philippines over the past two months, it indicates that a far more extensive and better organized al-Qaeda-linked Islamic terror network than previously believed has existed in Southeast Asia for an extended period of time and is far from being uprooted. At the center of it is the Jemaah Islamiah (Islamic Group), a regional terrorist organization whose goal is to create Daulah Islamiah, an Islamic state encompassing southern Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia and the southern Philippines. Its leader, according to Singaporean and Malaysian security officials, is Indonesian cleric Abu Bakar Ba’asyir (Bashir), 63, who is being portrayed as the Osama bin Laden of Southeast Asia.


      Authorities in Singapore have ascertained that soon after the start of the US bombing campaign in Afghanistan, Hambali guided execution of a JI/al-Qaeda plan to drive trucks loaded with fertilizer (ammonium nitrate) bombs into the US, Australian, British and Israeli embassies in Singapore. Four tons of ammonium nitrate had been purchased by trusted Hambali lieutenant Yazid Sufaat (see above) back in October 2000 through his Kuala Lumpur clinical pathology company, Green Laboratory Medicine. The explosives materials, originally delivered to the Malaysian town of Muar on the Malacca Strait, were shipped from there to the Indonesian island of Batam just off Singapore. Surveillance of the embassies had been completed and the largest terror attack since September 11 was about to take place when the JI cell members charged with carrying it out were arrested in early December.

      Also arrested in early December in Singapore were members of another JI cell controlled by Hambali, who were planning to bomb US warships docking in Singapore, a shuttle bus carrying US military personnel, and offices of American corporations. A videotape showing a subway station near a shuttle-bus stop was found by CIA officers in the wreckage of an al-Qaeda leader’s house in Afghanistan. …. And where is Hambali? Singaporean and Malaysian investigators have been told by JI members in their custody that he went to Afghanistan in October. But he is now believed to be in hiding in Indonesia. The ammonium nitrate has not been found.

      [The tons of ammonium nitrate purchased by Yazid Sufaat was found buried on a plantation].

  74. DXer said

    North Korea tests germ warfare on disabled, defector says–korea-tests-germ-warfare-on-disabled-defector-says-20150705-gi5jsg

    A North Korean scientist involved in the regime’s biological and chemical weapons programmes has defected, apparently with evidence of tests on human subjects.

    The researcher, who has only been identified by his surname, Lee, was based at a microbiology research centre in Ganggye, near the Chinese border, but defected on June 6, South Korea’s Yonhap news agency reported.

    Mr Lee, 47, fled to Finland via the Philippines, according to a group that campaigns for human rights in North Korea.

    He was carrying an electronic data storage device allegedly containing 15 gigabytes of information on the use of humans by Kim Jong-un’s regime to test biological and chemical weapons.

    He plans to give testimony to the European Parliament this month to highlight the North’s abuse of its own people, the rights group said.

    There have been similar reports in the past. Im Cheon-yong, an officer in North Korea’s special forces, defected in the mid-1990s, telling South Korean intelligence officials that the final straw was seeing mentally and physically disabled children being used in chemical weapons tests as part of his training.

    “For the biological and chemical warfare tests, we needed ‘objects’,” he said in an interview last year. “At first, they used the chemical agents on mice and showed us how they died. Then we watched the instructors carrying out the tests on humans to show us how a person dies. I saw it with my own eyes.”

    Mr Im said tests were conducted at three or more facilities operated by the military, including one alongside a political prison camp close to the city of Hyanghari. Anthrax was frequently tested, along with as many as 40 chemical weapons that the regime had concocted itself.

    In February, South Korean intelligence warned that Pyongyang had stepped up biological and chemical warfare drills, carrying out at least a dozen large-scale exercises in the previous year.

    A report issued last year by 38 North, a respected website operated by the US-Korea Institute at Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, suggested that North Korea devotes substantial resources to chemical weapons.

    Based on testimony from soldiers who have defected, the study claimed the regime was able to manufacture 4,500 tons of chemical agents a year, with capacity to ramp that up to 12,000 tons. The regime was producing hydrogen cyanide, phosgene, sarin, tabun, chlorine and a number of agents from the mustard gas family and had reportedly provided chemical weapons or technology to Egypt, Iran, Libya and Syria since the 1990s, it said.

    Coming after United Nations investigations into North Korea’s human rights abuses, Mr Lee’s testimony will be closely watched.

    “The international community will have to collect the data and, if it can be verified that such experiments have taken place, then that would seem to violate international humanitarian law,” said Daniel Pinkston, an analyst with the International Crisis Group in Seoul.

    “After that, it is up to the international community to do everything in its power to prevent this happening again, to terminate these programmes and to hold those responsible for carrying them out accountable,” he said.

  75. DXer said

    Defector may reveal human experiments in North Korea
    USA TODAY NETWORKJohn Johnson, Newser 3:40 p.m. EDT July 4, 2015

    I once knew a John Johnson who worked for the Sacramento Bee. I don’t know if it is the same person. I corresponded with John about the water wars. I was working on behalf of the Sacramento Municipal Utility District against what the Central Valley agribusinesses. The agribusiness who helped put Reagan if office were trying to shift the cost of millions of dollars of major project vfeatures (used to irrigate their fields) onto Northern California power consumers.

    The John I knew then moved to Los Angeles Times. If this is the same John Johnson (I have no idea), I’m just thrilled for the blast from the past as he is a personal hero of mine — prompting me to love the idea of journalism and investigative reporting.

    We met after a top USG official had just finished a hearing and testified that there was no “factual basis” for the claim (that I was making about a conflict of interest).

    Leaving the hearing, I walked up behind the reporter (John) and, shaking in anger, said, “You want factual basis? Be back at your office in an hour and I’ll drop it off.” And I hand-delivered a big envelope of contemporaneous internal documents.

    The rest was history.

    If anyone is deserving of a Pulitzer, it was the John Johnson I once knew when he lived in DC and worked for the Sacramento Bee.

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

  76. DXer said

    Does the documentary evidence brought over by the North Korean defector Lee on June 6, 2015 confirm that North Korea had virulent Ames prior to 2001? …so as to corroborate the July 1999 by the Egyptian Islamic Jihad official in court testimony in July 1999 that North Korea had provided Al Qaeda (via Moro Front) virulent anthrax?

    N. Korean biochemical expert flees to Finland: source
    2015/07/02 10:11
    SEOUL, July 2 (Yonhap) — A North Korean expert on biochemical weapons defected to Finland last month, carrying gigabytes of human experiment results with him, a source said Thursday.

    The 47-year-old researcher, identified only by his surname Lee, at a microbiology research center in Ganggye, Chagang Province, bordered by China to the north, fled to the European country on June 6 via the Philippines, said the source from a North Korean human rights group.

    “His ostensible reason for defection is that he felt skeptical about his research,” the source told Yonhap News Agency.

    Lee held a data storage device with 15 gigabytes of information on human experiments in order to bring North Korea’s inhumane tests to light, according to the source.

    The North Korean defector will give testimony before the European parliament later this month.


    yonhapnews is South Korea’s biggest news agency, I think.

    To judge how big 15 gigabytes is, your Gmail, Drive, and Google+ storage is now one big 15 GB chunk.

  77. DXer said

    The CIA’s detection of the Ames strain of b. anthracis in Afghanistan was discarded by the FBI due to different testing results, sampling procedures, and methodology used by the FBI and IC (“Intelligence Community”)

    Posted by Lew Weinstein on April 30, 2015

    • DXer said

      Consider the CIA’s detection of the Ames strain of anthrax in Afghanistan in the context of this October 2001 article in the Guardian about Moro Front’s acquisition of the anthrax. (Moro Front is a close Al Qaeda affiliate working with Hambali and Al Qaeda anthrax lab director Yazid Sufaat). Hambali and Sufaat were travelling around in 1999 working on AQ’s anthrax program.
      At least some White House personnel were given Cipro on the night of the September 11 attacks. Staff accompanying vice president Dick Cheney as he was spirited off to the safety of Camp David were given the drug as “a precaution”. Officials will not discuss who might be receiving the antibiotic now. …

      Speaking about whether there was a direct link between the September 11 attacks and the anthrax letters, Mr Bush said: “I have no direct evidence but there are links. Both series of actions are motivated by evil and both series of actions are meant to disrupt America’s way of life. Both series of actions are an attack on our homeland. Both series of actions will not stand.’


      But reports in yesterday’s New York Post claimed that Osama bin Laden, whose al-Qaida network is believed to be behind the attacks, bought samples of anthrax by mail from laboratories in eastern Europe and Asia for as little as $10,000.

      The claim was made in a 143-page confession of former extremist Ahmad Ibrahim al-Najjar, who says he was once a member of al-Qaida, at a recent trial of more than 100 members of the Egyptian Islamic Jihad.

      According to translated accounts of his testimony, al-Najjar told authorities there was nothing cloak-and-dagger about Bin Laden’s transactions involving deadly biological agents.


      “Factories” in the Czech Republic and elsewhere in eastern Europe supplied deadly bacteria, including e-coli and salmonella, by mail without checking the identities of the purchasers as long as Bin Laden’s agents paid $7,500 up front, he said.

      Bin Laden’s group was able to get the anthrax germ from another “factory” in southeast Asia, which supplied it to the Indonesian-based Islamic Moro Front, a terror group closely associated with Bin Laden. The price for the anthrax spores, al-Najjar said, was $3,685, “plus shipping costs”.


      The text of three anthrax letters released earlier this week by the US justice department all included the phrase “Death to America” and had the date “09-11-01” at the top, indicating that the anthrax incidents were coordinated.

      The letters have other similarities suggesting the attacks were an organised effort. The strain of anthrax found in two letters and bacteria found at a Florida publishing company were similar. Three of the letters were postmarked Trenton, New Jersey.

      The attorney general, John Ashcroft, said that despite the dates on the letters, authorities could not prove a link to the men who carried out the airliner attacks last month.

    • DXer said

      Now compare the October 2001 Guardian article above about the AQ/Sufaat affiliate Moro Front’s purchase of the anthrax with the article this month where North Korea asked for a UN probe.

      North Korea accuses US of targeting it with anthrax and asks UN for help
      North Korea’s UN ambassador claims that US is trying to use ‘biological warfare’ against them but US state department calls the allegations ‘ridiculous’

      It seems that the UN needs to probe North Korea’s use of anthrax on live human subjects alleged by the defector.

      The Dugway debacle is pretty straightforward — the protocols relating to irradiation of anthrax were inadequate.

      But consider whether the anthrax purchased from North Korea by Moro Front prior to July 1999 (according to a top Egyptian Islamic Jihad official) was the Ames strain.

      Then consider who knew what when.

    • DXer said

      In written correspondence with the Case Closed blog, the Sacramento State graduate and former Malaysian Army Captain Yazid Sufaat has invoked the “Fifth Amendment” and declined to disclose the b. anthracis strain he was using.
      Posted on April 28, 2015

      Before his recent arrest, Yazid Sufaat declined to tell DXer the strain of the “anthrax spore concentrate”
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on May 29, 2013

  78. DXer said

    North Korean scientist defects to Finland with evidence of ‘chemical warfare tests carried out on humans’
    • Researcher was part of secretive country’s chemical weapons programme
    • Fled North Korea with storage device carrying evidence of human testing
    • Set to offer testimony to European Parliament to bring attention to issue
    • Last year military defectors said their training involved biological weapons drills using disabled children
    PUBLISHED: 10:18 EST, 3 July 2015 | UPDATED: 14:08 EST, 3 July 2015

    Read more:

    The officer, Im Cheon-yong, broke the revelations to South Korean intelligence officials, saying it was the final straw which led to him defecting.
    In a 2014 interview with The Telegraph, Mr Im said: ‘If you want to graduate from this academy, you need to learn how to confuse the enemy without revealing your own forces, how to carry out assassinations, how to use chemical weapons and so on.
    ‘And then we have what they call ‘field learning. For the biological and chemical warfare tests, we needed ‘objects.


    Favourite agent: The anthrax bacterium is frequently tested in North Korea – along with as many as 40 other similar substances cooked up by government researchers


    A 2014 report suggested that the North devotes a significant portion of its resources to producing and testing such weapons.
    The report was produced by 38 North, a website run by the US-Korea Institute at Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies.
    Based on interviews with North Korean defecting soldiers, the nation is easily capable of producing 4,500 tons of chemical agents each year – but can almost triple this figure at full capacity.
    The study also cited former prison inmates and guards, who claimed such agents were also tested on political prisoners at concentration camps.
    Shockingly, the paper also suggested North Korea had provided chemical weapons technology to Syria, Egypt, Iran and Libya in the last two decades.
    North Korea is already the subject of UN sanctions and it is unknown what more can be done to prevent the reported use of its citizens in biological and chemical weapons tests.

    North Korean defects with data on ‘chemical warfare tests on humans’
    Scientist escaped to Finland with alleged details of the North’s long-rumoured use of its own citizens for chemical and biological weapons tests

    By Julian Ryall, Tokyo

    2:03PM BST 03 Jul 2015

    A North Korean scientist who was involved in the regime’s biological and chemical weapons programmes has defected to Finland, apparently with evidence of tests carried out on human subjects.
    The researcher, who has only been identified by his surname, Lee, was based at a microbiology research centre in Ganggye, close to the Chinese border, but defected on June 6, South Korea’s Yonhap news agency reported.
    Mr Lee, 47, fled to Finland via the Philippines, according to a group that campaigns for human rights in North Korea, on the grounds that he “felt sceptical about his research”.

    Mr Lee was carrying an electronic data storage device allegedly containing 15 gigabytes of information on North Korea’s use of humans being used to test biological and chemical weapons.
    He is planning to give testimony to the European parliament in late July in order to highlight the North’s abuses of its own people, the rights group said.

    Anthrax bacterium is frequently tested, along with as many as 40 different types of chemical weapons that the North Korean regime has concocted itself.

    In February, South Korean intelligence warned that Pyongyang has stepped up its biological and chemical warfare drills, carrying out at least a dozen large-scale exercises in the previous year.
    “These are clearly offensive drills planning a biochemical attack,” a South Korean officer told the Chosun Ilbo newspaper. “We believe it could cause a real threat.”
    The report added that North Korea has reportedly provided chemical weapons or technology to Egypt, Iran, Libya and Syria since the 1990s.

    • DXer said

      July 2 Korea Times item —

      N. Korean scientist flees to Finland with info on inhumane experiments
      July 2, 2015

      The South Korean Defense Ministry believes that the North is developing anthrax in addition to other biochemical weapons. (AP)

      A North Korean scientist with expertise in biochemical weaponry defected from his home country in June and has been spending his time in Finland.

      The 47-year-old left with 15 gigabytes worth of data and information regarding human experimentation, which he felt may have crossed ethical boundaries according to Yonhap News Agency.

      The researcher plans to present and hand over the information to the European parliament later this month.

      The South Korean Defense Ministry recently issued warnings of biochemical threats coming from the North including the likes of anthrax and smallpox.

      2009 Popular Mechanics story –

      North Korea’s Biochemical Threat
      While its nuclear test spurs outrage, North Korea has grown a vast biochemical weapons arsenal in secrecy. We investigate Kim Jong Il’s deception, plus his rogue nation’s human trials and its deadly harvest’s terror potential.


      On day one, the U.S. delegate, Assistant Secretary of State John C. Rood, charged North Korea, along with Iran and Syria, with violating the ban on researching and developing biology for war. “We have particular concerns with the activities of North Korea … in the biological weapons context, but also because of their … support for terrorism and their lack of compliance with international obligations,” Rood said. Internationally, it is widely agreed that the country is aggressively developing several weapons of mass destruction.


      NORTH KOREA’S CHEMICAL and Bioweapons (CBW) program appears to be modeled on that of the former Soviet Union, which covertly constructed a massive biological weapons infrastructure within the shell of a civilian research organization called Biopreparat. Inside Biopreparat, the Soviets developed deadly agents that included weaponized forms of anthrax and pneumonic plague.

      Intelligence reports from the United States and South Korea list anthrax, smallpox, pneumonic plague, cholera and botulism toxins as leading components of North Korea’s bioweapons projects. “Information from U.S. government sources indicates that North Korea is capable of growing several biological agents,” says Michael Stebbins, head of Biology Policy at the Federation of American Scientists. And, he says, the country “has the infrastructure to weaponize them.”

      Anthrax is believed to be one of North Korea’s most fully developed biological weapons. Growing anthrax on a large scale is relatively easy: It can be done with basic brewing equipment. Sources indicate that North Korea also has developed the ability to mill anthrax (grinding the cake into microscopic powder), and to treat it to form a lethal and durable weapon. An attack might use a modified missile that cruises at low altitude to spray a fine mist of weaponized germs over its target area. The resulting deaths and injuries could number in the thousands.

      Human Trials

      NORTH KOREA’S biological and chemical weapons have never been deployed against outside enemies. According to defectors, however, they have been used inside the country on human test subjects. The victims: political prisoners.

    • DXer said

      How did the Daily Mail write its story without mentioning that the defector Im Cheon-yong came over in the 1990s? If this is the story — and there is not some Lee who just defected with 15 gigabytes of data — then that would make the story over twenty years old.

      But based on the story in the Korean Times, I believe the defection by a “Lee” who came over last month, in June 2015.

      It was a different defector, I think, Im Cheon-yong who previously described:

      If you want to graduate from this academy, you need to learn how to confuse the enemy without revealing your own forces, how to carry out assassinations, how to use chemical weapons and so on,” he told DW.

      ‘The regime does this because it insists to their people that North Korea is heaven on Earth,’ says Shigemura

      “And then we have what they call ‘field learning’. For the biological and chemical warfare tests, we needed ‘objects’,” he added. “At first, they used the chemical agents on mice and showed us how they died. Then we watched the instructors carrying out the tests on humans to show us how a person dies. I saw it with my own eyes,” Im claimed.
      He said he got repulsed by what he had witnessed and managed to get over the border into China and arrived in South Korea in the mid 1990s. Now 50 years old, Im is a prominent advocate of the regime change in Pyongyang and president of both the Soldiers’ Alliance for Free North Korea and The Fellowship Foundation for Freedom.


      Kim Myong-chol, executive director of The Centre for North Korea-US Peace, dismisses Im’s claims.

      “It is the same nonsense,” he told DW. “This guy – and plenty of others like him – are just looking to make money by attracting the attention of South Korea and the US. That is why they make these lies up. People like him know nothing about the real North Korea and all they care about is making money from their lies.”

      But it sounds like there is a new defector, Lee, who came over in June 2015 with 15 gigabytes of documentary evidence.

      With 15 gigabytes, it should be easy to trace whether North Korea had virulent Ames prior to 9/11. The FBI was not able to determine the issue because of a lack of access — and the Supreme Leader’s uncooperative attitude.

      A Rand reports provides some secondary open source material on previous defectors.

      The Challenge of North Korean Biological Weapons
      Bruce W. Bennett
      RAND Office of External Affairs
      CT-401 October 2013

      Click to access RAND_CT401.pdf

      • DXer said

        There was absolutely nothing wrong about the Daily Mail article. It was my reading of it that was sun-baked. The article is clear in its attribution of some of the claims to an earlier defector — and the confusion was introduced when I quoted only excerpts.

  79. DXer said

    Islamic Jihad ‘Confessions’ Described
    London Al-Sharq al-Awsat in Arabic 6 Mar 99 p 5
    Saturday, March 6, 1999

    First of three reports by Khalid Sharaf-al-Din from Cairo: “Surprises in the Trial of the Largest International Fundamentalist Organization in Egypt. Abu-al-Dahab: My Mission Was To Attack the Turah Prison After Dropping a Bomb from a Glider”

    (FBIS Translated Text) In the second-biggest trial of fundamentalist organizations in Egypt, since the Jihad Organization trial of 1981 that followed the assassination of late Egyptian President Anwar al-Sadat, the leading defendants being tried by the Higher Military Court at Haekstep base north of Cairo gave new information about an international organization whose policies were in accord with what has been attributed to Bin-Ladin, especially in the matter of attacking US interests around the world, particularly US embassies in the Middle East, Africa, and Southeast Asia.

    The Egyptian security services have continued their investigations in the Returnees from Albania case throughout the past four months. More than 20,000 pages of investigation report contain the defendants’ detailed confessions to the nature of their anti-regime activities, violent acts inside Egypt, and plans to threaten the state’s stability.

    The defendants’ confessions brought many surprises and details about the violent groups’ role, the extent of their activities abroad, and the political ambitions they were pursuing through their banned activities.

    Al-Sharq al-Awsat has read the investigation papers.

    The first thread in this case came with the arrest of defendant Ahmad Ibrahim al-Najjar in Albania, where he had fled after being sentenced to death in the Khan al-Khalili case in 1994 (date as published). Once al-Najjar was captured, members of the organization began to fall one after another. He revealed the names of a large number of his partners and gave detailed information about the support he got from the Islamic Jihad Organization’s leaders, foremost among them Ayman al-Zawahiri, ‘Adil ‘Abd-al-Majid, and Tharwat Salah Shihatah, who lives in Britain.

    Al-Najjar, who was sentenced to death in absentia in 1997 (date as published) in the case of the attempt to blow up Khan al-Khalili in central Cairo, said: The confrontation with the United States is a challenge that concerns not only Ayman al-Zawahiri or Usamah Bin-Ladin but the entire Islamic nation.

    Al-Najjar is among the 12 defendants accused of membership in the Jihad Organization who were extradited from Albania to Egypt last July. Another defendant extradited from Bulgaria to Egypt is also being tried before the court, whose sentences cannot be appealed.

    Nonconventional Weapons (subhead) The most controversial point in the confessions of the defendants from the Albanian fundamentalist group was the confirmation that pro-Bin-Ladin elements had obtained germ and biological weapons by post at a cheap price. Factories in the former Eastern Europe supply viruses that cause fatal diseases, such as E-Coli and Salmonella, without checking the identities of the purchasers. The important thing for them is payment of the invoice in advance. One of the organization’s members secure an offer to supply samples of anthrax gas (as published) and other toxic gases from a factory in a Southeast Asian country. The germs were offered at a price of $3,685, including shipping costs. A laboratory in Indonesia exported serums to the Islamic Moro Front, which has close ties with pro-Bin-Ladin groups and with Arab Afghans and Balkans (as published). It is believed that the Moro Front has large quantities of toxic gases.

    In another part of the investigation the defendants said that a laboratory in the Czech Republic had agreed to provide samples of the lethal butolinum germ at $7,500 a sample. The laboratory did not query the purpose for which this lethal substance would be used. The security services’ report on this point said that it is possible to use a microscopic quantity of these viruses (as published) to kill hundreds of people by inhaling it or eating contaminated food.

    The security services monitored contacts that elements abroad made with members inside the country to urge them to carry out new operations against police officers with the aim of undermining security. The security authorities exerted great efforts to monitor these elements and succeeded in getting back 12 leading members from Albania, another group from Arab and African countries, in addition to defendants seized in the (Nile) Delta area as they were preparing to carry out new operations, specially the al-Minufiyah group.

    The investigations conducted by the security services and the Higher State Security Prosecution Office with the defendants revealed a number of new changes in the Islamic groups’ ways of action and therefore the means of confronting and monitoring them. The defendants’ confessions showed that the organizations adopted new mechanisms, most noticeably the following: They expanded the scope of their targets. They stopped limiting them to Egyptian and Arab figures and installations and included the interests of the major powers, specially US and French interests, because of their involvement, according to the defendants, in the pursuit of the organization’s members inside and outside their territories. According to defendant Sa’id Salamah’s confessions, targeting these countries’ interests was bound to have a massive media value, and this would confirm the organization’s capabilities, which some quarters had begun to doubt.

    They diversified the targets and did not limit them to the blowing up of installations. This change included the kidnapping of figures and hostages “so as to bargain with the ruling regimes and security services for the release of the detained members of the Islamic Group (IG) or other pro-loyal groups, as defendant Ahmad Ibrahim al-Najjar said in his confessions.

    They launched joint action with other groups and organizations, both local groups and others operating outside their countries. They sought to reduce the ideological and jurisprudential differences between the various groups that were active in armed action. The defendants’ confessions revealed that coordination was indeed made between the main groups of Jihad, the Vanguards of Conquest, the IG, and the groups that split from it. Meanwhile, this new action was carried out under the umbrella of what was called the Army for the Liberation of Islamic Holy Places, which is reportedly led by Usamah Bin-Ladin, who has become the highest organizational term of reference for all the jihad groups.

    • DXer said

      Excerpt from above:

      “The germs were offered at a price of $3,685, including shipping costs. A laboratory in Indonesia exported serums to the Islamic Moro Front, which has close ties with pro-Bin-Ladin groups and with Arab Afghans and Balkans (as published).”

      Al Qaeda’s anthrax lab director, my former Facebook Friend Yazid Sufaat, associated with the Moro Front, does not deny responsibility for the Fall 2001 anthrax mailings. He pled the Fifth Amendment and declined to tell me the strain he was using.

      Yazid Sufaat says that, contrary to some media reports, he was successful in developing anthrax, but prefers other bugs; he views anthrax as good for sabotaging, but not killing
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on April 30, 2015

      Al Qaeda anthrax lab tech Yazid Sufaat discusses Zacarias Moussaoui in this 2011 French language television interview
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on March 28, 2012

      Yazid Sufaat was happy with the anthrax work when he stayed with KSM for 6 days in 2001 and when he reported to Dr. Ayman on the results of his research with virulent anthrax in August 2001 with Hambali; in his correspondence with DXer, he seems happy today also (and very much in love).
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on May 1, 2012

      2014 Straits Times report : Into what weapons did Yazid Sufaat attempt to load anthrax?
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on February 23, 2014

    • DXer said

      October 2001 story in Mirror about court testimony.

      “FUGITIVE Osama bin Laden traded in bio-death through the post, one of his aides has revealed.

      The al-Qaeda terror chief gave the Indonesia-based Moro Front pounds 2,500 to buy anthrax spores from a factory in south east Asia, plus extra for “shipping costs”.”

      The Mirror
      October 25, 2001


      By: Lucy Rock In New York And Andy Lines In Washington

      FUGITIVE Osama bin Laden traded in bio-death through the post, one of his aides has revealed.

      The al-Qaeda terror chief gave the Indonesia-based Moro Front pounds 2,500 to buy anthrax spores from a factory in south east Asia, plus extra for “shipping costs”.

      He also paid pounds 5,000 cash for e-coli and salmonella from makers in the Czech Republic and elsewhere in eastern Europe.

      Astonishingly, bin Laden made no attempts at secrecy. His identity was not checked and the spores were sent openly by post.

      The disclosures, which have stunned the FBI, came as the US anthrax toll mounted and the British consulate in New York was evacuated after receiving an envelope of white powder.

      Bin Laden’s deadly dealing is revealed in a 143-page confession made to an Egyptian court in 1999 by Ahmad Ibrahim al-Najjar.

      Al-Najjar is a senior al-Qaeda lieutenant. He is also a chief of Egyptian Jihad whose leader, Ayman al-Zawahiri, is bin Laden’s right hand man.

      Because of his links, FBI agents believe his claims are true.

      Defiant Al-Najjar, serving life jail for trying to topple Egypt’s President Mubarak, told the court that all targets in the West are legitimate. He said: “I am a Muslim. I am anti-Jew and support what Osama bin Laden does because the confrontation with the US is an issue of defiance which concerns not only al-Zawahiri or bin Laden, but the Islamic nation.”

      Referring to the 1998 bombing of the US embassy in Nairobi which killed 213 people, he added: “I supported the operation because that embassy is the biggest centre for monitoring Islamic movements in the region.”

      Al-Najjar worked undercover with Islamic extremists moving between Pakistan, Sudan, Albania, and Azerbaijan. He was among 12 men extradited to Egypt from Albania in July, 1998.

      Accusing the CIA of being behind his arrest and extradition, he said: “They kidnapped me from a street in Tirana, just as they kidnapped all my colleagues.

      “They tied my hands and put a canvas sack over my head, which they did not remove except in front of a US general who checked my identity.

      “Albanian police fabricated accusations against me and put me under house arrest for 48 hours.” ***

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: