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

Posts Tagged ‘Seed Magazine – anthrax’

* scientists and legislators (and Lew Weinstein) remain unconvinced that the FBI’s anthrax case is closed

Posted by Lew Weinstein on May 25, 2009

Debora Rudacille writes in Seed Magazine (4-14-09)

  • In July 2008 anthrax vaccine researcher Bruce Ivins committed suicide.
  • According to the FBI the 62-year-old had murdered 5 people and sickened 17 others in the anthrax letter attacks of 2001.
  • Today, nine months after Ivins’ death and nearly eight years into an investigation that has consumed millions of dollars, some scientists and legislators are not convinced that the FBI’s case would have succeeded in court.
    • “Anything of this seriousness should be demonstrated beyond a reasonable doubt,” says US Representative Rush Holt, who in March renewed his call for a national commission to thoroughly investigate the anthrax letter attacks of 2001 and the government’s “bungled response” to the crime.
    • Patrick Leahy, a Democractic senator from Vermont and a target of one of the anthrax letters, along with Senator Arlen Spector, a Republican from Pennsylvania, challenged the FBI’s conclusions at a Senate Judiciary Committee meeting in September 2008.
    • Both said they doubt that Ivins, acting alone, could have carried out the crime.
  • the FBI (has) formally petitioned the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) to form an independent panel of scientists to review the validity of the methods used to link the distinctive strain of anthrax in the letters with RMR-1029, and to provide expert opinions on other scientific questions related to the case.
    • Most critics dispute not the quality of the genomic science that led investigators to the flask of RMR-1029 but rather the conflation of Ivins with the flask. “There were other labs out there that were presumably sourced for RMR-1029,” says Gerard Andrews, Ivins’ former supervisor at USAMRIID. “What was the detective work that eliminated those labs?”
    • Ravel’s team compared hundreds of blinded samples of subtilis provided by the FBI looking for a match for the letter subtilis. “We never found a match,” he says. “Not even close.” 
    • That fact, says Andrews, probably exonerates Ivins. But that issue has been sort of pushed under the carpet because it doesn’t support their case.”
  •  Rep. Holt would like his proposed National Commission to look at “what happened, how and why it happened, and what we need to do to prevent any future occurrences.” His bill has some support, he says, though not enough to ensure passage. “It’s not high on the national agenda right now,” he says. “But it should be.”

Deborah Rudacille is a freelance science writer and the author of The Riddle of Gender and The Scalpel and the Butterfly: The War Between Animal Research and Animal Protection. Roots of Steel, a history of Baltimore steelworkers, will be published in 2010.

read the entire article at …



CC - front cover - small


There is so much reasonable doubt about many details of the FBI’s case.

In the big picture, the question is how the FBI, the greatest police force in the land, could fail to solve this case of mass murder and national security.

My conclusion, which is why I wrote CASE CLOSED, is that the FBI was told not to solve the 2001 anthrax case.

Who had the power to curb the FBI’s investigation? Why?

My fictional scenario in CASE CLOSED presents answers to these questions.

Does CASE CLOSED present what actually happened? Of course not. It’s a novel! But many early readers have told me my fictional scenario is ALL TOO PLAUSIBLE.



CASE CLOSED is available on (Kindle now, paperback in mid-June) …

* purchase CASE CLOSED at amazon (Kindle format)

A short video introducing CASE CLOSED has been posted to YouTube …

* see CASE CLOSED VIDEO on YouTube



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