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

Posts Tagged ‘washington post’

* The withholding or false creation of evidence by police and prosecutors is a cancer on the American justice system which nobody seems to want to do anything about …Lew’s exciting novel A GOOD CONVICTION personalizes this issue in a dramatic and frightening fashion … it could happen to anybody

Posted by DXer on May 30, 2012

Letters to the Editor re: Trouble at the FBI crime lab by Spenser Hsu in the Washington Post 4/17/12 …

The Post series documenting problems with forensic analysis at the FBI’s crime lab, and the efforts of officials to conceal the findings, has certainly been eye-opening. One can understand mistakes; one can even understand ignoring sound scientific principles to establish meaningful procedures and protocols. One is hard-pressed, however, to understand why such things should be deliberately concealed from defendants, except for the notion that the people involved were more concerned with protecting agencies and prosecutors than in obtaining impartial justice…  Orin Hollander, Jamison, Pa.


LMW Comment … 

The withholding or false creation of evidence by police and prosecutors is a cancer on the American justice system which nobody seems to want to do anything about. Purposeful false conviction should be a prosecutable offense, and police and prosecutors who lie (as opposed to making a mistake) should go to jail.

But where are the prosecutors who have the courage to bring charges against their colleagues?

It surely seems that the FBI and the DOJ have withheld evidence in the case against Dr. Bruce Ivins. If so, those who did so and those who have covered up for them should face criminal charges of obstruction of justice.

Do you see parallels between this institution-protecting behavior by FBI and DOJ and the Catholic Church coverup of sexual abuse by priests? To me it is all part of the same pattern by which those in power seek to stay in power, the truth be damned.

I wrote a novel about prosecutor misconduct called

A Good Conviction,

in which a young man is convicted of a murder

by a New York City prosecutor who knew he was innocent.

It happens far more often than we would like to believe.


read more about A Good Conviction and my other novels at …

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* NYT report … analysis by scientists Hugh-Jones, Rosenberg and Jacobsen disputes FBI closing of anthrax case … Dr. Alice Gast, the head of the NAS panel that reviewed the FBI’s scientific work in the anthrax investigation, says … the paper points out connections that deserve further consideration … the potential value of chemical signatures has not been fully explored … she urges a full review of classified government research on anthrax, which her panel never saw

Posted by DXer on October 10, 2011


Is it possible that Director Mueller, an intelligent man, doesn't know the FBI has failed to make its case against Dr. Ivins? And what does it mean if he knows but won't admit it?


William Broad and Scott Shane write in the NYT (10/9/11) …

  • biologists and chemists still disagree on whether federal investigators got the right man and whether the FBI’s long inquiry brushed aside important clues.
  • three scientists argue that distinctive chemicals found in the dried anthrax spores — including the unexpected presence of tin — point to a high degree of manufacturing skill, contrary to federal reassurances that the attack germs were unsophisticated. The scientists make their case in a coming issue of the Journal of Bioterrorism & Biodefense.

Both the chairwoman of a National Academy of Science (NAS) panel

that spent a year and a half reviewing the F.B.I.’s scientific work

and the director of a new review by the Government Accountability Office (GAO)

said the paper raised important questions that should be addressed.

  • Alice P. Gast, president of Lehigh University and the head of the academy panel, said that the paper “points out connections that deserve further consideration.”

Dr. Gast, a chemical engineer, said the “chemical signatures”

in the mailed anthrax and their potential value to the criminal investigation

had not been fully explored.

She also noted that the academy panel suggested a full review

of classified government research on anthrax,

which her panel never saw.

  • In interviews, the three authors said their analysis suggested that the F.B.I. might have pursued the wrong suspect and that the case should be reopened.
  • Their position may embolden calls for a national commission to investigate the first major bioterrorist attack in American history.
  • Dean Boyd, a Justice Department spokesman, said the paper provided “no evidence whatsoever that the spores used in the mailings were produced” at a location other than Fort Detrick. He said investigators believe Dr. Ivins grew and dried the anthrax spores himself. “We stand by our conclusion.”
  • In addition to Dr. Hugh-Jones, the authors of the new paper are Barbara Hatch Rosenberg, a biologist, and Stuart Jacobsen, a chemist; both have speculated publicly about the case and criticized the F.B.I. for years.
  • In 2008, days after Dr. Ivins’s suicide, the bureau made public a sweeping but circumstantial case against him. Last year, the bureau formally closed the case, acknowledging that some scientific questions were unanswered but asserting that the evidence against Dr. Ivins was overwhelming.

Yet no evidence directly tied Dr. Ivins to the crime.

  • Some of the scientist’s former colleagues have argued that he could not have made the anthrax and that investigators hounded a troubled man to death.
  • In its report last February, the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) panel sharply criticized some of the F.B.I.’s scientific work, saying the genetic link between the attack anthrax and a supply in Dr. Ivins’s lab was “not as conclusive” as the bureau asserted.
  • If the authors of the new paper are correct about the silicon-tin coating, it appears likely that Dr. Ivins could not have made the anthrax powder alone with the equipment he possessed, as the F.B.I. maintains.

That would mean either that he got the powder from elsewhere

or that he was not the perpetrator.

  • If Dr. Ivins did not make the powder, one conceivable source might be classified government research on anthrax, carried out for years by the military and the Central Intelligence Agency. Dr. Ivins had ties to several researchers who did such secret work.
  • The Government Accountability Office, the investigative arm of Congress, is conducting its own review (still ongoing) of the anthrax evidence. Nancy Kingsbury, the official overseeing the project, said the agency had spoken with the paper’s authors and judged that “their questions are reasonable.”
  • Several anthrax scientists who reviewed the new paper at the request of The Times said they believed it neglected the possibility that the tin and silicon were meaningless contaminants rather than sophisticated additives.
  • Dr. Gast, the head of the National Academy of Sciences panel, noted that her group strongly recommended that future investigations of the attacks examine the government’s classified work on anthrax.
  • She called access to secret records “an important aspect of providing more clarity on what we know and what we don’t know.

read the entire article at …



I have long held that the FBI’s publicly presented case against Dr. Ivins is clearly bogus: no evidence, no witnesses, an impossible timeline, science that proves innocence instead of guilt. So what really happened? And why doesn’t the FBI offer America a credible story?

As regular readers of this blog well know, I can imagine only 3 possible “actual” scenarios …

  1. The FBI has more evidence against Dr. Ivins but is, for some undisclosed reason, withholding that evidence … POSSIBLE BUT NOT SO LIKELY
  2. The FBI, despite the most expensive and extensive investigation in its history, has not solved the case and has no idea who prepared and mailed the anthrax letters that killed 5 Americans in 2001 … EVEN LESS LIKELY
  3. The FBI knows who did it (not Dr. Ivins) but is covering up the actual perpetrators, for undisclosed reasons …THE MOST LIKELY SCENARIO
When I first heard the FBI/DOJ August 2008 press conference, I was infuriated. It was obvious to me even then that the FBI had no case, or at least no case they chose to make publicly known. Since I’m a novelist, I focused my anger and wrote CASE CLOSED, a fictional account of what might have happened in the anthrax attacks and subsequent FBI investigation. The novel has been published and is available at amazon …

* buy CASE CLOSED at amazon *

Here is the first scene in CASE CLOSED, where I have the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) institute its own re-examination of the FBI’s obviously flawed investigation …

this is the opening scene of Lew Weinstein's novel CASE CLOSED


* buy CASE CLOSED at amazon *


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* DXer’s email to Washington Post Ombudsman about its August 7, 2008 “Dark Side” poisoning story

Posted by DXer on August 12, 2011



The Washington Post should correct its reporting on such a critical issue.

Re: August 7, 2008 report re Amerithrax (and today)- imagined earlier poisoning plot by Dr. Ivins -based on anonymous witness who then in 2009 book described her psychotic delusions- not corrected by Post

The Washington Post first reported the imagined poisoning plot on August 7, 2008 and interviewed, without naming her, the counselor who met with Dr. Ivins for several sessions in 2000 (Judith McLean).

The Washington Post now relies on the story in a book review in its Entertainment pages today.

It is still an ongoing matter of great importance. A GAO report probing the DOJ investigation is due out in September.

Like the Washington Post, the government’s psychiatrist relies extensively upon Dr. Ivins’ first therapist, Judith M. McLean, who writes of how she acquired her psychic abilities in her 2009 book available for sale on — from a being from another planet. She believed nasty astral entities were trying to kill her.

The Post’s critically important article dealt with an imagined earlier poisoning plot by Dr. Ivins — based on the anonymous witness who then in 2009 book described her psychotic delusions.

Today we are now hearing the lies repeated in a review in the Washington Post review of a book by David Willman, MIRAGE MAN.

The witness was the principal witness against Dr. Ivins in David Willman’s book which argued that Dr. Ivins was creepy — and then addressed the merits of the crime in an epilogue to an appendix.

This is not merely a journalistic issue — Amerithrax is a national security issue and missteps in analysis need to be corrected.

In light of HIPPA, it is never good journalistic practice to report such accusations while not identifying the mental health professional; the counselor quit the field and left the state by 2001 given her astral recovery work (she would fly to Afghanistan and WTC each night) was so exhausting.

psychic says … she was granted her abilities by an extraterrestrial being … got sick in 2001 from doing astral recovery work at Ground Zero and in Afghanistan after 9/11 … and was pursued by nasty Taliban entities trying to kill her’s-conclusions-in-his-recently-published-“the-mirage-man”-because/

DOJ investigators successfully avoided deposition of Amerithrax consultant Gregory Saathoff who extensively and uncritically relied on the Ivins’ accuser who claims she was granted her psychic abilities by an alien from another planet.

The report filed in the United States District Court by Dr. Saathoff should be corrected and all reliance on the first counselor should be removed.

Washington Post should correct its reporting on such a critical issue.

Excerpts from key witness (from her book ASCENSION JOURNEY)


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