How did francisella tularensis (tularemia), a deadly bacteria, show
up on the Washington Mall precisely at the time one of the largest antiwar demonstrations
in U.S. history was underway? “District of Columbia Health Director
Doctor Gregg Pane told WTOP Radio late Saturday that biological agent monitors
on the National Mall, an esplanade in downtown Washington, gave positive readings
for a small amount of tularemia on September 24 and 25,” reports Yahoo
News. “The sensors are operated by the Department of Homeland Security,
but officials were not notified of the potential hazard until Friday, according
to Pane.” It’s interesting how these biological threats surface
at politically sensitive moments—for instance, the mailing of anthrax
letters to top Democrats after the nine eleven attacks. Our ever vigilant corporate
media has completely glossed over the fact the anthrax used in the mailings
was traced back to the Army’s biodefense center at Fort Detrick. It should
be noted the U.S. military and the CIA have a long and sordid history of “testing”
biological and chemical weapons on unwitting victims—from releasing mosquitoes
carrying Yellow Fever in Savannah, Georgia, to dispensing a bacillus throughout
the New York City subway system (see this chronology).
Of course, we have no idea how or why tularemia appeared on Washington’s
esplanade, but considering the long and checkered history of the U.S. military
and intelligence services, a deliberate release of bacteria—possible biological
warfare against critics of Bush’s invasion and occupation of Iraq—cannot
be dismissed out of hand.
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