Saturday, May 21, 2005

More Anthrax Spores in the Future?

The anthrax killer took the lives of these five people in the Fall of 2001:

• Robert Stevens - a photo editor in Boca Raton, FL
• Kathy Nguyen - a Vietnamese immigrant from New York City
• Ottilie Lundren - a 94-year old woman from Oxford, Connecticut
• Thomas Morris Jr. - postal worker in Washington, D.C.
• Joseph Curseen. - postal worker in Washington, D.C.

The killer is still at large. The next anthrax attack might be 100,000 times more deadly. Forbes Magazine reviews some of the work being done to protect the public:

The short-lived anthrax attacks that started a week after Sept. 11 are still shrouded in mystery. Innocuous white envelopes arrived by mail at big media companies and Capitol Hill. Twenty-two people were sickened and five died. "This is next," the letter-writer warned. To date no one has been charged.

The next attack could be far more horrific. Two hundred and twenty pounds of aerosolized anthrax spores sprayed from a nondescript truck in any U.S. city would wipe out anywhere from 130,000 to 3 million people, the equivalent of a hydrogen bomb. The scenario is considered one of the gravest bioterror threats to the U.S. Victims would be utterly clueless. Anthrax is odorless and tasteless and produces early symptoms that can dupe people into thinking they have the common flu. The inhaled version is usually fatal.

links:
Spore Wars - The anthrax attacks of 2001 were brutal and deadly. The next attack could be even worse. Are we prepared? [Forbes, Jun. 6, 2005]
2001 anthrax attacks [Wikipedia.org]
Top Ten Modern Day Cold Case Murder Mysteries [TJN]
The Anthrax Murder Mystery [TJN]

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