Media reports on biological/chemical terrorism


The media was full of biological/chemical warfare coverage this week. Why?

July 23, CNN "The American Experience"
Segment on "Is America Prepared for Test-Tube Terrorism?" covered the Aum Shinri
Kyo cult attempt to acquire Ebola virus, Ebola virus, Larry Harris' conviction for
wire fraud (he fraudulently ordered Plague from American Type), and Marine
training in responding to chemical/biological threat. Harris told me CNN interviewed
him on his warnings of Iraqi attacks but wouldn't use the segment because of fear
of affecting the stock market.

July 23, NBC Prime Time Live
Segment on the Ebola virus hinted at what a good virus
it might be for terrorists to use if it could be made to go airborne. They did a brief
rehash of the Japanese subway sarin attack, linking this with the Aum Shinri Kyo
cult there. -

July 23, Associated Press
Pentagon Ups Gulf Exposure Count
by Robert Burns

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Pentagon has increased by nearly fivefold
its estimate of American troops who likely were exposed to trace amounts
of Iraqi poison gases after the Persian Gulf War in 1991, defense
officials said Wednesday.
   But at the same time, officials have concluded that the low-level
exposures to 98,900 troops over a three-day period in southern Iraq
and northern Saudi Arabia probably are unrelated to mysterious maladies
reported by some Gulf War veterans. The cause of those illnesses has
yet to be explained.
   The Defense Department said it planned to officially release its
findings on Thursday.
   Officials speaking on condition of anonymity said the new estimate
of troop exposures is based on more complete information about
circumstances when U.S. troops demolished the Khamisiyah ammunition
depot in southern Iraq on March 10, 1991. Unknown to the troops,
122mm chemical rockets were in the depot.
   None of the troops involved reported ill health effects at the
time, and the fact that Iraqi chemical weapons were present at Khamisiyah did
not come to light until 1996.
   In an earlier estimate made with incomplete data on such factors
as wind shifts, troop locations and the purity of the chemicals in the Iraqi
rockets, the Pentagon and CIA had said about 20,000 American troops might have
been exposed.
   Computer modeling based on more complete information showed the
plume carrying the minute amounts of chemical agents traveled as far
as 300 miles, the officials said. The 98,900 troops were under that
plume between March 10 and 13.
   Officials stressed that none of the 98,900 was exposed to amounts
of gas that would cause even the most minor immediate symptoms such as runny
nose or dimmed vision. Even so, all 98,900 will be surveyed as part
of a continuing Pentagon effort to determine if there are long-term health
effects to exposure to trace amounts of chemicals.
   A lethal dose of the poison gas would be 100 miligrams per cubic
meter, and an incapacitating dose would be 35 miligrams. Initial effects
such as dimmed vision are seen at an exposure level of 1 miligram per cubic
meter. None of the 98,900 who were in the Iraqi gas cloud got even 1
miligram exposure, officials said.
   For more than five years after the war against Iraq, the Pentagon
strongly denied there was any evidence that American troops had been exposed
to chemical weapons.
   In June 1996, however, the Pentagon acknowledged the demolition of
the Khamisiyah ammunition depot in southern Iraq in March 1991 had
resulted in the release of toxic chemical agents in the vicinity of
American troops. But it didn't know the degree of exposure or the number of
troops possibly affected.
   Last month the Pentagon said it had established the exact
whereabouts of U.S. forces on the day of the demolition, and just last week it
estimated that about 500 chemical-filled 122mm Iraqi rockets had been blown up
at Khamisiyah.
   The conclusions in the report to be released Thursday were drawn
by matching up the troop location information with newly derived data on
the size, density and movement of the chemical-bearing plume created by
the demolition.
   When the Pentagon initially estimated that 20,000 troops may have
been exposed it surveyed them to determine such things as ill health
effects they suffered. Of the 7,400 who responded, 26 reported medical problems
that could be associated with exposure to gas. Nine of the 26, however,
were not in the area of the plume created by the Khamisiyah demolition,
officials said.
[Thanks to Jim Brown <>, "GULFWATCH"]

Jul 25, Baltimore Sun
"For training purposes only, faux terrorism"
                 Film: Terrorists set off "deadly" gas
                 yesterday in Harford Mall, but not for real. It
                 was for a training film that will be shown to
                 fire and rescue workers in 120 cities.

                                    By Gary Cohn

                                    SUN STAFF

                                    It is an alarming
                                    scenario: terrorists
                                    unleash deadly gas in
                                    the food court of a
                                    crowded mall. Rescue
                                    workers rush in and are
                                    overcome by toxic
                                    fumes. The injury and
                                    death toll climbs.

                                    That was the script for
                                    a Defense Department
                                    training film being shot
                                    yesterday at the
                                    Harford Mall in Bel Air.

                 The film is part of a $42.6 million national program
                 to teach police, firefighters, medics and other
                 emergency workers how to recognize and deal with
                 the possible terrorist use of chemical and biological
                 weapons. It will eventually be shown to tens of
                 thousands of fire and rescue workers in 120 cities,
                 including Baltimore.

                 Training for emergency workers is crucial because
                 they are almost certain to be the first ones on the
                 scene in the event of a domestic terrorist attack.

                 "If one of these things goes down, it's not going to
                 be the state and federal cavalry that save the people
                 -- it's going to be the local people. They are the
                 ones responsible for responding," said Jim
                 Warrington, program director for Domestic
                 Preparedness for the Army Chemical and Biological
                 Defense Command at Aberdeen Proving Ground,
                 the lead agency for the program.

                 The program to train and assist officials in dealing
                 with the potential terrorist use of weapons of mass
                 destruction was passed by Congress in 1996 in
                 reaction to a series of events, including the April
                 1995 bombing of the federal building in Oklahoma
                 City and a March 1995 incident in which a terrorist
                 group unleashed the nerve gas Sarin in the Tokyo
                 subway system, killing a dozen people.

                 Sarin is a
                 odorless nerve
                 gas that is 25
                 times more
                 potent than

                 With the
                 yesterday, a
                 mock Sarin
                 gas attack was
                 staged at the
                 mall. Filming began shortly after midnight and was
                 completed by the time the mall opened for business.
                 Local law enforcement, fire and rescue workers, a
                 few professional actors and dozens of volunteers
                 participated in the filming.

                 The script reads like a Hollywood disaster film. A
                 man and woman enter the mall and go to the food
                 court. Carrying a large, shopping bag they sit at a
                 table in the food court near a trash can. The man
                 puts some trash in a torn paper bag, places it on the
                 floor, and the couple quickly leave the mall. A
                 growing damp spot appears on the side of the bag.
                 An elderly man notices the leaking bag while
                 emptying his food tray and peers inside the bag.

                 Unknown to the shoppers eating
                 lunch, the script says, an unseen, odorless gas
                 begins to rise from the paper bag.

                 The elderly man clutches his chest and collapses.
                 Two bystanders rush to help and are soon
                 overcome by the gas. A television reporter, shooting
                 a feature about Larry's Cookies, rushes over and is
                 also felled by the gas.

                 Medical technicians arrive

                 By the time emergency medical technicians Ron
                 Britton, Bev Britton and Ricky Davis (all members
                 of the Bel Air Volunteer Fire Company who
                 participated in the filming) arrive at the food court,
                 five people are down.

                 The rescue workers, who are not wearing gas
                 masks, bend over to examine the victims -- and also
                 fall victim to the gas.

                 The script makes it clear that rushing to the aid of
                 the victims, though the first inclination of rescue
                 workers, is not the right thing to do in this instance.

                 The scene will now be reshot with the correct

                 This time when the rescue workers walk into the
                 mall, Davis spots five people lying on the floor. He
                 grabs Ron Britton by the arm and warns, "Ron,
                 we've got five patients."

                 Ron Britton replies, "This doesn't look safe. We
                 need to back out." The rescue workers quickly
                 leave the mall -- the correct response.

                 `Very wise decision'

                 "That would be a very wise decision," said Robert
                 Stephan, district fire-rescue chief for Montgomery
                 County Department of Fire and Rescue Services,
                 who is a technical consultant on the film. "We're
                 trying to prevent first responders from becoming

                 Lt. Col. Bob Gum, a medical doctor based at
                 Aberdeen, said that showing medics, firefighters
                 and others what not to do in the event of a
                 biological or chemical attack is crucial.

                 "That's really what this training film is all about," he

                 The filming continued.

                 In one scene, about 100 people -- members of the
                 Bel Air High School drama company, mall
                 employees and other volunteers, their faces
                 smeared with Vaseline to simulate some of the
                 effects of the nerve gas -- listen as a member of the
                 camera crew instructs them on how to act while
                 rushing from the mall.

                 "You are supposed to be panicky and scared," he
                 says. "Fight the urge to laugh."

                 Volunteers are convincing

                 The scene comes off flawlessly. Firefights and
                 rescue workers say the volunteers are convincing as
                 they rush from the mall clutching their chests and
                 gasping for air.

                 Richard Woodward, chief of the Bel Air Volunteer
                 Fire Company, said that participating in the filming
                 was valuable.

                 "I like it because it's just a good training exercise for
                 us in handling these kinds of incidents," he said.
                 "We're honing our skills. It's a good refresher."

[Thanks to for tip]

July 20, Prince William Journal
GROUND ZERO by Ron Podell, Journal Staff Writer

(Picture: men dressed in white - A Haz-Mat team carries Alan Huckabee, 15,
of Fairfax, VA., during a mock "terrorist attack" in Arlington Virginia.)

    Dazed children, their arms and legs covered in a dark brown substance,
are directed toward an orange-hued tent that more closely resembles a
carnival Moonwalk.

     A mass of men and women wearing white Tyvek suits, black gloves, blue
helmets, green boots and oxygen masks spread out and secure the area.  Some
instruct the children to undress to their skivvies; others point them to a
gauntlet of shower heads, primed to spew streams of chemical detergents and
clean water.  A blue covered awning creates a tunnel, providing some level of

     "I've got a kid!  I've got a kid!" one adult cries out, staggering as he
clutches a small heaped like a sack of potatoes over his shoulder. The child
was shaking.

      Two of the Tyvek-clad individuals bark instructions and lend a hand.

      "Walk through the showers, please!"  one worker shouts through a
bullhorn, a hint of urgency in his voice.

        At another site, more emergency workers are furiously scrubbing down
victims, their contaminated skin demanding quick action.  Sponges, brushes---
lots of them--- are needed.

         A few of the emergency personnel simulate administering the
tranquilizer Valium.

          Except for the district smell of chocolate and the sight of a few
kids are enjoying the decontamination shower a little too much on a day that
saw temperatures reach 100, the scene resembles what could happen if the
civilians in the Washington area were the victims of a chemical terrorist
         A chemical terrorist attack is exactly what an elite unit of more
100 fire, emergency medical and law enforcement personnel --known as the
Metro Medical Strike Team --- were preparing for the day, just in case an
event like the subway attack in Tokyo in 1995 happens in the metro region.
That is a situation emergency preparedness professionals consider a

        "Absolutely.  That's why this was the first team put together in this
nation," said Montgomery County Department of Fire and Rescue Services
Chief Ed Bickham, who is also one of the three designated strike team
leaders.  "This is probably one of the highest target areas."

        Last week's event was a part of two years' worth of training for the
response team, which was funded with $500,000 in federal funds approved
by President Clinton two years ago.  The first of its kind in the nation,
the regional group was formed in 1995 by the U.S. Public of Health Services
and the Washington Metropolitan Council on Governments to handle chemical
terrorists events in the Beltway region.

        The 129-member team of firemen, law enforcement officers, nurses,
paramedics, and other emergency medical personnel hail from Alexandria,
Arlington, the District, Fairfax, Montgomery, Prince George's and Prince
William counties.

          Most have prior experiences with hazardous materials and/or
emergency medical services before being selected for the team.

         The goal of the team's drill, performed at Fire Station No. 2 in
Arlington last week was to identify how seriously the civilians were affected
and to remove toxic substance from the victim's bodies.

         Members of Boy Scout Troop 21346 from Burke, VA., and Explorer Post
1742 from Fairfax County played the role of victims.  Chocolate was used to
simulate a toxic chemical agent, which, if used in a real incident, could
possibly cause people to have seizures and force their heart to stop.

         If the event were real, the strike team's job would be to respond in
the event of a chemical terrorist attack and complement first responders---
including fire, emergency and law enforcement personnel ---and local Hazardous
 Materials or Haz-Mat teams.
          "In the vast majority of Haz-Mat incidents, there are no mass
casualities," said Robert D. Stephen, Montgomery County Department of Fire
and Rescue Services district chief and Hazardous Materials team leader.
         "But this was the type of scenario [chemical attack], the sole
intent is the killing or disabling of civilians," Stephen said.
          Stephen is an assistant taks force leader for the regional strike team.
             The chemical attack on the Tokyo subway system in March 1995 was
the wakeup call to the United States, said Bill Clark deputy director of the
U.S. Public Health Service's Office of Emergency Preparedness.

            The attack was orchestrated by Japanese cult members who, working
at home, manufactured a deadly chemical, Sarin, that killed 12 people when
released in the subway.

           An additional 550 people were transported to Tokyo hospitals,
while 5,000 made their own way to medical facilities.  Tokyo Fire and Rescue
personnel suffered 135 casualties.

          "It's amazing what a 32-cent stamp will get you sometimes," Clark
said in a reference to a letter his office wrote to President Clinton a few
months after the Tokyo attack.

          Clinton responded by having the federal government provide $500,000
in start-up money for the team.  The money was used for recruitment,
training, necessary equipment and a specially designed 20-foot trailer that
converts into an emergency decontamination shower station designed to service
up to 750 people per hour.

         The trailer vehicle, which cost $65,000, was mainly designed by
Arlington County Fire Department Capt. Mike Moultrie, one of the three strike
team leaders: Arlington County Fire Department Chief Ed Plaugher, who heads
the COG Steering Committee; and Elmer May, a member of the Arlington-based
firm, Research Planning, Inc.

           "It's not a Rube Goldberg thing," said May, a program manager in
the firm's emergency response program's division.  "It's very clear how it
would be utilitzed."

              Hanging booms provide three rows of shower heads on either side
of the vehicles.  Contaminated victims walk through four stations, two where
detergents are administered and two to rinse.

             Propane tanks installed provide the ability to produce hot water
in the event weather conditions are cold, May said.  The awning, which acts
as a screen, is designed to provide a bit of dignity for victims who, in real
life, may be forced to discard all clothing as a precautionary measure.

         The system is a vast improvement over the use of kidding wading
pools and hoses, which have been used in the past for hemical events, Clark

         The straight Tyvek suits used in the drill are designed to prevent
team members from becoming contaminated.  Tyvek F, a higher grade of suit, is
used for members who  would work directly in the "HOT ZONE" or the highest
area of contamination.

          In this country, people are more aware of terrorist attacks,"
Bickham said.   "Oklahoma City, the attempted destruction of the World Trade
Center in New York.  There is a need for localized, specialized response for
all chemical terrorist attacks."

        The Washington-area team was the first in the world assembled because
the nation's capital is a prime target for terrorists, especially with the
presence of a heavily used metro system, Bickham said.

         An additional 26 cities nationwide from Anchorage, Alaska, to
Honolulu are gearing up to create similar strike teams, Clark said.  Boston,
New York, Los Angeles, Atlanta and Denver are apparently next in line.

           "We're looking seriously at this." said James Nickerson, a
certified health officer with the Town of Weymouth's Office of Board of
Health in Massachusetts.  Nickerson, reprsenting Boston, was on hand to
receive a closeup view of the drill.

            The Metro Medical Strike Team, because its members reside in
many areas, would need anywhere from an hour to 90 minutes to mobilize in the
event of a terrorist attack , Bickham said.  Depending on their destination,
they could possibily arrive more quickly.

            But it is local fire and rescue personnel and law enforcement
that are considered the "first responder or first line of defense," Stephan

            It is their job to protect themselves, attempt to identify the
signs and symptoms of exposure, begin decontamination of the affected victims,
and provide treatment and transport of affected civilians, Stephan said.  The
Tokyo attack became more widespread because first responders did not wear
their breathing apparatus nor did they begin to remove contaminated clothing,
Stephan said.

         The local Haz-Mat team, which would likely arrive next, would enter
the "Hot Zone Area" and further try to identify the type of chemical agent or
agents used.

        "There's no guarantee any self respecting terrorist uses only one
chemical, "Stephan said.

       Tabun, Sarin and Soman are nerve agents typically used
by terrorists and can cause miosis, convulsions, sudden loss of
consciousness, difficulity breathing and nausea.  Blister blood and choking
agents are other types used in chemical warfare.

       The Strike Teams, which each include five law enforcement officers to
protect the team members, complement and bolster local officials, Stephan

         "I think we're a great deterrent.  Terrorists go where systems
aren't intact," Plaugher told the troops shortly before the drill.  "We are
here to say we are intact."

[Thanks to for transcription]


Date: Fri, 25 Jul 1997 07:06:10 -0400 (EDT)
From: RevCOAL <>

On Fri, 25 Jul 1997, Wes Thomas wrote:
>The media was full of biological/chemical warfare coverage this week.
>connection with Larry Harris' warning of attacks this week?

Sure...all part of a grand disinfo scheme designed to get the public
accustomed to greater government presence/control....

>July 23, CNN "The American Experience": segment on "Is America Prepared for
>Test-Tube Terrorism?" covered the Aum Shinri Kyo cult attempt to acquire
>Ebola virus,

More importantly, it stressed how LOCAL authorities would be unable to
handle the situation, making an argument for special FEDERAL troops...
but since it also made a point that the effects of some of the toxins
would take place within the first few minutes, it also made the case
for having these special troop IN PLACE, i.e. they would have limited
effectiveness if one had to wait a couple of hours for them to

 >July 23, NBC Prime Time Live: segment on the Ebola virus hinted at what a
>good virus
>it might be for terrorists to use if it could be made to go airborne. They

Did they explain how the terrorists themselves would avoid
contaminating themselves?

This story is a strawman...any number of other biological and chemical
toxins a 'terrorist' could utilize to the same result, without
endangering themselves...

In fact, if _I_ were planning on conducting some sort of toxic attack
on an unsuspecting civilian population, I'd make sure I'd use
something which wouldn't start showing up in the population for at
least a couple of days...give ME plenty of time to get the hell outta

Of course, if one's goal is to also be DRAMATIC, then you'd want to
utilize something which would have immediate effect,,,and if one
thinks one will gain entrance to Heaven if one dies while conducting
this attack, then perhaps something like Ebola would be used...

>         An additional 26 cities nationwide from Anchorage, Alaska, to
>Honolulu are gearing up to create similar strike teams, Clark said.  Boston,
>New York, Los Angeles, Atlanta and Denver are apparently next in line.

And all these 'warnings' and 'alerts' regarding a potential attack any
day now just gets the public geared up to expect...heck, welcome
even...such 'teams'...

Donna  ;-)

Date: Fri, 25 Jul 97 11:13:33 PDT
From: henri@Alaska.NET (Henry Ayre)

>   But at the same time, officials have concluded that the low-level
>exposures to 98,900 troops over a three-day period in southern Iraq
>and northern Saudi Arabia probably are unrelated to mysterious maladies
>reported by some Gulf War veterans. The cause of those illnesses has
>yet to be explained.

The Pentagon is puffing smoke in our eyes. The one thing the Pentagon
DOESN'T want to be saddled with is the solid accusation that the entire
Gulf War Sydrome affair **began** with the untested pills and shots the
troops were forced to take to make them proof against a nerve gas attack.
Thus, the Pentagon, completely unable any longer to say that Gulf War
Syndrome is all in the heads of the service people, is willing to admit
that poisoning could have occurred in a strictly limited geographical area
due to **Iraqi** chemical weapons. The Pentagon will busily nitpick this
admission back and forth ad nauseum just to keep the public mind away from
the awful truth, that Gulf War Syndrome was due to "friendly fire," the
weapon being U.S. hypodermic syringes and pills, all untested for safety.

Read on...

Subject: Do French vets have Gulf War Syndrome?

Date: 7 Feb 1996 23:44:35 GMT

/** mideast.gulf: 92.0 **/
** Topic: Do French vets have Gulf War Syndrome **

** Written 10:05 PM  Feb  3, 1996 by cgilbert in cdp:mideast.gulf **

             Do French vets have Gulf War Syndome?*

   BLAZING TATTLES exclusive:  1995 -- Oh what a year it was!
                      THE GULF WAR SYNDROME
                          By Joe Vialls

     Carine, Australia (January 6, 1996).  During late 1995,
devastating new evidence on Gulf War Syndrome was released,
providing strong scientific support for those who have long
suspected the Gulf veterans are suffering short and long term
effects of unproven anti-bacteriological warfare inoculations and
anti-nerve gas tablets, forcibly administered by U.S. Army doctors
in Saudi Arabia.
     With thousands of U.S. veterans suffering from Gulf War
Syndrome, it came as no surprise to learn in October that several
hundred British veterans were suffering in the same way, with three
to five new cases being reported every week.  Like their U.S.
counterparts, most were puzzled by the origins of the disease,
which they initially attributed to exposure to oil-laden smoke in
Kuwait, toxic dust from depleted uranium rounds fired by U.S.
weapons, and possible contamination from expended Iraqi chemical
shells in the area, fired before the Gulf War commenced.
     In a startling break with tradition, on British military
doctor stated that in her view, 99% of the problems could be
sourced back to the anti-bacteriological warfare "cocktail"
inoculations, and anti-nerve gas tablets forcibly administered to
military personnel in the Gulf region at that time.  In an October
1995 broadcast of the ITN TV World News from London, she further
explained that all British military personnel had been provided
with the same un-trialled and unproven drugs as the Americans, from
the U.S. medical sources.  To reinforce the point she was making,
the doctor explained that the number of British personnel suffering
symptoms correlated exactly on a per capita basis with the
Americans.  It was a controversial claim, but apparently lacking in
     Shattering confirmation of her claim came eleven hours later
when Australian Channel 10 television carried exactly the same
story at 5 p.m., but with an extra piece tagged onto the end.  The
extra piece claimed that French military personnel in the Gulf
region, numbering about the same as the British contingent, had
been prevented from taking the "cocktails" and tablets on the
direct order of the French Commander-in-Chief.  The story continued
that since the end of the Gulf War, not a single member of the
French military has suffered from Gulf War Syndrome or reported any
of its known symptoms.  By 6 p.m. the same night, when the other
Australian television networks ran their news broadcasts, the awe-
some story with its stunning implications had vanished from sight
and was not run by any other Australian TV network.  Nor was it
reported in the Australian newspapers.
     For any scientist or veteran, the fact that the French should
be completely clear of Gulf War Syndrome while the Americans and
British during 1991, has huge and potentially horrifying
implications.  After all, the French at the same food, drank the
same water, breathed the same air and trudged through hundreds of
miles of the same desert.  They also fired much the same weapons at
much the same targets.  So what were the additional environmental
variables which made the French unique in their ability to
completely withstand the deadly Gulf War Syndrome?  The truth is
there were none at all, save for the experimental American
"cocktail" inoculations and tablets.
     To attempt to confirm this very short-lived story, the author
contacted the French Military Attache in Australia and inquired if
it was correct that the French Commander-in-Chief forbade his own
personnel the untested substances.  The Military Attache was happy
to confirm this, and further confirmed that not one French soldier
or airman has suffered since the end of the Gulf War.  It seemed to
be a subject of which he was very proud, and rightly so.  Perhaps
it is time for U.S. and British veterans to confirm the same points
with their local French consulates, before taking a very hefty
legal swing at their own governments.
     * All copyright laws apply.  From 1/96 Gulf War Issue of
BLAZING TATTLES.  Other articles in issue:  Exclusive on Gulf War
Illness (GWI); Analysis of recent GWI reports; What happened to
Kuwait's oil lakes?; Kuwait silent on post-war illnesses; Gulf
fires created chemical weapons; DU: Dead children, sick soldiers;
"Father of Environmental Illness" dies; Is the globe heating up?;
Award winning biological food program; Workshop on nitrogen and
ecosystems; Thank you Dupont, Mellon, & Hearst; Conference on
biological carbon sinks; Symposium on heart, nerves & environment;
A conservative speaks on sustainability; Bioregionalism; Conference
on international env. law; Sleeping in petroleum wastes?; A book
for just about everyone; Pesticides and culinary insects.
     Claire W. Gilbert, Ph.D., Publisher, BLAZING TATTLES, P.O. Box
1073, Half Moon Bay, CA 94019, USA, Email: <>.  For
complimentary copy of February issue ONLY (Valentine & Sex), send
stamped, self-addressed envelope to above address.  Outside U.S.,
** End of text from cdp:mideast.gulf **