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Archive for Monday, August 4, 2008

DNA led agents to anthrax suspect

August 4, 2008

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— DNA taken from the bodies of people killed in the 2001 anthrax attacks helped lead investigators to Bruce Ivins, who oversaw the highly specific type of toxin in an Army lab, a government scientist said Sunday.

Using new genome technology, researchers looked at samples of cells from the victims to identify the kind of anthrax Ames strain that killed them, the scientist said. They noticed very subtle differences in the DNA of the strain used in the attacks than in other types of Ames anthrax.

Spores taken from envelopes used to mail the anthrax, as well as from the sites where they were sent, also were scrutinized.

With that, investigators linked the specific type of anthrax back to Ivins' biological weapons lab at Fort Detrick in Frederick, Md., where he oversaw its use and handling for research.

"It had to do with the very specific characteristics in the DNA of the letters and what was in Bruce's labs," said the government scientist, who is close to the investigation. "They were cultures he was personally responsible for."

The scientist spoke on condition of anonymity because he is not authorized to speak to reporters. A senior U.S. official on Sunday night confirmed the scientist's account.

The scientific discovery gave the FBI its first solid break in one of the nation's most high-profile unsolved crimes after years of pointing the finger at the wrong suspect. Combined with other evidence, the Justice Department is expected to close the case this week, concluding Ivins was the mastermind and sole criminal behind the attacks that killed five and sickened 17 others in the weeks following 9/11.

Ivins killed himself last week as prosecutors prepared to indict him on murder charges.

Dozens of other researchers in Ivins' lab also had access to the type of Ames strain used in the attacks, the scientist said, meaning the DNA alone is not enough to prove his guilt.

Comments

Mkh 5 years, 8 months ago

This entire thing stinks to high heaven....this "suicide" is questionable at best. The FBI is being incredibly blantant in this cover-up, running around offering millions to Ivins' kid to frame him. It's now known that this "DNA evidence" was not directly linked to Dr. Ivins and that several other scientists had access to it, who are not being questioned or suspected. Hmmmmmm.

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XD40 5 years, 8 months ago

notnowdear, logrithmic, et al. Please re-start your meds. We're all begging you. If you don't do it for yourselves, think about your poor suffering families. At the very least, adjust your tin-foil hats!

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logrithmic 5 years, 8 months ago

Exactly Not.It seems that Daddy must have told rightwingers never to question his judgement. Our perhaps their religious upbringing and the edict from the churdh to never question but accept on faith certain irrationalities were taken too seriously as children that they just can't break away from their absurdly gullible reactions to news that threatens their sell-insulated worlds.I just don't know. But it is quite funny when you think about it.There have been tons of conspiracies since the dawn of time. Rightwingers refuse to acknowledge them and, consequently, have put our form of government at risk. They do so at their own peril.

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screedposter 5 years, 8 months ago

Don't forget the so called "Moon landing," notnowdear.

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notnowdear 5 years, 8 months ago

I have never found the label "conspiracy theorist" to be all that bad in connotation.I mean, conspiracies happen.Look at, and they are all facts now:- Operation Northwoods, where the CIA was willing to kill Americans in a false flag operation, posing it as a terrorist attack, so that they could invade Cuba.- The Iran/Contra affair- The CIA and their drug smuggling days-- the antics of the Bush fAdministration most obviously creating false intelligence so that they could invade Iraq.- strong-arming less affluent countries into supporting the Iraqi Invasion, in an effort to include them into the Coalition of the sWilling.The obvious manipulation of scientific research by the Bush fAdministration.All of them proven, and laws altered for some of them to provide Intell oversight, a job that Pat Roberts took with tongue in cheek, and lips to Cheney's rump roast.I don't know how one can senselessly think that our US government is always on the up-and-up. But it must be a nice little, dumbed-down world to believe all that is officially released from the present US government.But then I don't drink the local fluoridated tap water. Because of this, I still have my memory and lack of apathy. I maintain that the current apathy that the Rite wants us to stomach ultimately destroys the soul.

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notnowdear 5 years, 8 months ago

Just read another possible lie on the Anthrax Killer, that he had an obsession with Kappa Kappa Gamma. However, three paragraphs down was this little mentioning:"The officials all spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the case publicly." Yet they did speak publically, and it was their intention to mislead. AND they broke the law.If they cannot put their name to it, it is probably a lie. I am always suspicious with an article says "White House official" or "government official" and then gives no real name, so no one can check out their story.

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logrithmic 5 years, 8 months ago

Yes, me, notnowdear, The New York Times, MSNBC, USA Today, the Lawrence Journal World, the Washington Post, former Senator Tom Dashle, and anyone that doesn't agree with the head in the sand rightwingers that post to these forums are conspiracy theorists. LOL.Here's what Tom Dashle, former Senate Minority Leader of the United States Senate and a victim of the anthrax terrorist attacks perpetrated by unknown people on possibly two U.S. Army bases had to say:"From the very beginning I've had real concerns about the quality of the investigation. Given the fact that they already paid somebody else $5 million for the mistakes they must have made gives you some indication of the overall caliber and quality of the investigation.""I think the American people deserve more of an accounting on this investigation and some appreciation of how to bring this to closure. I don't know anything about the most recent development, and that's unfortunate. I think all of us, not only those of us directly affected, but all of us need to know more than we do today.""Unfortunately, it doesn't bring anything to closure. This probably further complicates their ability to get to the facts."(The investigation surrounding Ivins might be) "just another false track and a real diversion of where they need to be. We don't know and they aren't telling us."

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screedposter 5 years, 8 months ago

Duct tape for the basement. Wait, that was an evil neo-con idea.

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notnowdear 5 years, 8 months ago

I hope you weren't drinking when you flew that thing.As for the more sober and serious readers, this is a good article as well:http://www.newscientist.com/blog/shortsharpscience/2008/08/was-ivins-anthrax-killer.html?DCMP=ILC-hmts&nsref=specrt10_head_Anthrax%20killer?

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The_Original_Bob 5 years, 8 months ago

Stock your pantry with non-perishable items and water!

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madmike 5 years, 8 months ago

Reminder logrithmic and notnow, I am in the black helicopter circling over yout tin-foiled hats.

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Flap Doodle 5 years, 8 months ago

Remember Marshal Dillon? Something like that, but with bigger hats!

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Boston_Corbett 5 years, 8 months ago

"A leak from such a lab would be enough to generate marshal law"....Is 'marshal law' where we get to dress up in those cool uniforms with big hats and stars and badges and ribbons and swords and guns and stuff? Yea!!!

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Flap Doodle 5 years, 8 months ago

loggy, your hoof is already in your mouth. Stretch out & put a cool washcloth over your eyes.

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logrithmic 5 years, 8 months ago

I'll remember that comment when hoof and mouth disease hits the area, courtesy of the lab....See: http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2008/apr/12/bush_administration_acknowledges_disease_lab_accid/From link:"A simulated outbreak of the (foot and mouth) disease in 2002 - part of an earlier U.S. government exercise called "Crimson Sky" - ended with fictional riots in the streets after the simulation's National Guardsmen were ordered to kill tens of millions of farm animals, so many that troops ran out of bullets. In the exercise, the government said it would have been forced to dig a ditch in Kansas 25 miles long to bury carcasses. In the simulation, protests broke out in some cities amid food shortages."It was a mess," said Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kan., who portrayed the president in that 2002 exercise."Devastating results happened; utter chaos - loss of markets, the herds had to be destroyed, people panicked in urban areas," Roberts said during a 2005 Senate hearing.

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75x55 5 years, 8 months ago

Shiny side out, and make sure to put a 3.56" brim all around, with at least a 30 deg. deflection from the vertical.

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Flap Doodle 5 years, 8 months ago

Tape up your back doors. There are meek mocks loose in the area!

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logrithmic 5 years, 8 months ago

Roberts, Brownback, Moore, Boyda, Tihart, Moran, Sibelius, the state legislature, the business community all want the lab here.If Beezlebush chooses to put the lab here, it will be put here. There's nothing anyone can do about it. Heaven forbid that anything bad happens afterwards. I just hope proper precautions are in place and that better screening will ween out potential nutcases that have homocidal and sociopathic tendencies, as was attributed to Dr. Ivins.

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notnowdear 5 years, 8 months ago

I read an article in the Las Alamos Monitor when a counter-terrorism expert was talking to the scientists. He stated that the Anthrax Killer was Religious Rite. This coming from someone who didn't intend to let the whole world know what they were thinking.Sure wish I would find that link, and will someday.

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The_Original_Bob 5 years, 8 months ago

Close the blinds and shut the lights off!

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logrithmic 5 years, 8 months ago

McCain on anthrax?I find it interesting that on October 18, 2001, McCain appeared on the Late Show with David Letterman. Exact quotes:LETTERMAN: How are things going in Afghanistan now?MCCAIN: I think we're doing fine :. I think we'll do fine. The second phase - if I could just make one, very quickly - the second phase is Iraq. There is some indication, and I don't have the conclusions, but some of this anthrax may - and I emphasize may - have come from Iraq. LETTERMAN: Oh is that right?MCCAIN: If that should be the case, that's when some tough decisions are gonna have to be made.There can be no doubt that the military wanted the U.S. public to believe that the anthrax attacks were generated by Iraq. How else could you explain this misconception by and disinformation from John McSame?

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notnowdear 5 years, 8 months ago

Logrithmic, but Pat Roberts wants that lab here. We Kansans have no choice whatsoever, unless we can handily get rid of Roberts .

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logrithmic 5 years, 8 months ago

Again, the horrific prospect of having a Level 5 bioweapons lab right next door in Manhattan, KS, is what truly scares me. A leak from such a lab would be enough to generate marshal law throughout the state if not the nation.

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logrithmic 5 years, 8 months ago

I've posted comments on this article and they are not "simply republishing another article or blog." Sorry, that criticism is easily refuted by careful reading.

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notnowdear 5 years, 8 months ago

I think it is a very costly comfort to believe what the Bush fAdministration is telling us, and that includes the present FBI theory on who did the anthrax killing.

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notnowdear 5 years, 8 months ago

It appears I am not the only conspiracy theorist out there. I remember most distinctly beiong told by many that there was WMDs in Iraq. That is the biggest false conspiracy theory I have ever heard, and it lead to massive amounts of taxdollars being spent in places that people are still trying to trace. Needless to say, I didn't believe that conspiracy. But our government sure wanted us to believe this false conspiracy.And now Cheney is considering yet another attack on America just to cast war on Iran.http://www.truthout.org/article/hersh-cheney-plan-creating-false-flag-attack

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billbodiggens 5 years, 8 months ago

Gee whiz, logrthmic, this is suppose to be a comment post not an op-ed. How about comments rather than simply republishing another article or blog.

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notnowdear 5 years, 8 months ago

I am not feeling all that sure they are pinning this on the right guy. I think the anthrax killer is still out there, and the FBI knows it.

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logrithmic 5 years, 8 months ago

Another interesting perspective by the corporate media about these weapons labs. Why weren't these questions raised before Beezlebush and the RepubLICKlan Congress decided to spend billions establishing them?http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/25999741/

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logrithmic 5 years, 8 months ago

One more comment about the media's role in promoting these types of lab, including the Journal World.It seems to me that there is a love affiar with the Orwellian term "life sciences" used to describe the effort behind these bio-weapons labs. It is a propagandistic term of the worst sort. The media's embrace of this term shows how far they've gone to disguise the true purpose of these labs. Labs designed to generate horrible biological weapons and then figure out how to vaccinate against them should not be described as "life sciences." The entire effort is not unlike a cat chasing its tail. But even a cat is smart enough not to bite. I'm not so sure our biological weapons labs are that smart. But one thing I know. The teeth of these weapons are very sharp. Just ask the families of the five victims, the 17 injured, the 40 or so hospitalized, and the post offices and their customers who were terrorized.

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logrithmic 5 years, 8 months ago

I find it interesting that Ivins, a scientist with "homocidal and sociopathic" personality defects, could stay employed with the U.S. Army and work with WMDs.The U.S. Army seems to have turned a blind eye to reports that Ivins found anthrax leaks on a co-workers desk in December 2001 and cleaned it himself with bleach and that he found other residue outside containment areas in April of 2002. What does all this have to do with Kansas? Many of you should know that the U.S. government is considering moving a level 5 biological weapons lab to Manhattan. The dangers of this lab have been glossed over by the local media. Instead, the reporting has been all about jobs and the economic impact of the lab (which it is said will bring 500 potential Bruce Ivins to Manhattan). The governor, the state legislature and the business community have provided a perfect trifecta of lobbying for this lab while critics have been denied almost any coverage at all. As the New York Times reported on August 3, 2008, there are hundreds of such labs that have been developed under Beezlebush leadership during the post 9-11 years. It asks the question, should we feel safer given that many more people are now involved with these airborne toxins and bio-weapons?According to the Times, over $50 billion at the federal level has been spent on building these new labs around the country. That of course excludes the local and state taxes used to support such efforts. I believe that the State of Kansas has said they will spend $400 million to upgrade roads and provide a power supply to the lab in Manhattan.According to the Times, 14,000 people work in 400 labs across the nations on these deadly toxins that could be used as biological weapons. An investigator with the GAO testified to Congress that government oversight of these individuals is "insufficient."Professor Richard Ebright of Rutgers Unversity warned of the potential terrorist threat from such unsupervised operations in U.S. labs. The Times reported that Ebright said: "One well-placed student, technician or senior scientist - no cost, with the salary being provided courtesy of the U.S. taxpayer - and no risk, no difficulty....That is all it takes."These toxins could also be released accidentally. It does not require any forethought. Just an accident and we expose our people, our food supply and our animals to a horrible death. Now that we know at a minimum that the anthrax attacks were launched from a U.S. Army bio-defense lab, it is hoped that Governor Sibelius and the legislature will rethink their goosestep reaction to bringing a bio-warfare lab to Manhattan.

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logrithmic 5 years, 8 months ago

Many questions have been raised about these terrorist attacks on the American people.At the very least, elements within the government believe that scientists working for the U.S. Army were involved in these terrorist attacks. There are reports that at least two U.S. Army labs were involved.Here are two oddities about the attacks:1) The original letters containing the spores were dated September 11, 2001. 2) The letters suggest that the terrorists perpetrating the attacks were Muslim. Here's the text of the letter sent to Tom Brokaw of NBC News:"This is nextTake Penacilin nowDeath to AmericaDeath to IsraelAllah is great"A second letter to Vermont Senator Leahy, one of the most liberal senators in the Senate:"We have anthrax.You die now.Are you afraid?Death to America.Death to Israel.Allah is great."Glen Greenwald of Salon has demonstrated that ABC News reported on October 28, 2001 that three "well placed but separate sources" and later four "well placed but separate sources" said that the anthrax contained chemical traces of bentontite and silca. Please note that these claims by the sources were false. No traces of the chemicals were ever found in the anthrax used to kill Americans. But these false reports were used to suggest that Iraq and Saddam Hussein were behind these attacks.And Brian Ross of ABC News reported on October 28, 2001 the tests that found the chemicals bentontite and silca were conducted "by the US Army at Fort Detrick, Maryland...."More oddities:1) Why would four separate sources issue a false report about the test findings? 2) Why were these sources employed by the U.S. Army at Fort Detrick? 3) Why has ABC News not disclosed who these misleading sources were?There can be no doubt that those that reported these false findings wanted the American public to believe that these attacks were generated by Iraq. Here's what Peter Jennings reported on Octboer 26, 2001:"This news about bentonite as the additive being a trademark of the Iraqi biological weapons program is very significant. Partly because there's been a lot of pressure on the Bush administration inside and out to go after Saddam Hussein. And some are going to be quick to pick up on this as a smoking gun."There are many things still unknown about the anthrax attacks. Who these four sources is one of the key mysteries. For the complete Greenwald report, go here:http://www.commondreams.org/archive/2008/08/01/10738/

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madmike 5 years, 8 months ago

Ah yes, bozo and notnowdear, the two great larryville conspiracy theorists! you two need to hook up, you have so much in common!

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 5 years, 8 months ago

Apparently, the grand jury was weeks away from issuing any indictments. http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/04/us/04anthrax.html?_r=1&hp=&adxnnl=1&oref=slogin&adxnnlx=1217855295-nhV6SfFI5wsvAB2WXI4J6g"The evidence amassed by F.B.I. investigators against Dr. Bruce E. Ivins, the Army scientist who killed himself last week after learning that he was likely to be charged in the anthrax letter attacks of 2001, was largely circumstantial, and a grand jury in Washington was planning to hear several more weeks of testimony before issuing an indictment, a person who has been briefed on the investigation said on Sunday.""Agents from the Federal Bureau of Investigation also have no evidence proving that Dr. Ivins visited New Jersey on the dates in September and October 2001 when investigators believe the letters were sent from a Princeton mailbox, the source said.The source acknowledged that there might be some elements of the evidence of which he was unaware. And while he characterized what he did know about as "damning," he said that instead of irrefutable proof, investigators had an array of indirect evidence that they argue strongly implicates Dr. Ivins in the attacks, which killed 5 people and sickened 17 others."Also, the credibility of the counselor who called him homicidal is suspect--http://www.salon.com/opinion/greenwald/2008/08/04/anthrax/

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