It has too often been the case in the last decade or so, the truth about important events is first published either on the Internet or in a foreign newspaper. And it usually is in direct contradiction to the (authorized) leaks from "knowledgable" but unidentified government officials propagated by the "mainstream" media. The subject of mailed anthrax has followed this pattern. Many (too many) Americans will only accept "facts" when they see them on the eleven o'clock network news or read them in the establishment newspapers, e.g. The New York Times, Washington Post or Los Angeles Times. One of the earliest bits of misinformation that probably resulted in several deaths was the assurance that those not in the vicinity where the envelope containing the anthrax spores was opened had nothing to worry about. That had to be revised when victims hundred of miles from the capitol came down with anthrax poisoning. Cross contamination was finally acknowledged, but the danger was downplayed contending that treatment with Cipro (and later other antibiotics) was 100% effective in those cases.
We were told that inhalation of anthrax would require a concentration of eight to ten thousand spores in the lungs to be potentially fatal. We were told initially that the anthrax mailed was "crude" in form and could easily have been used by foreign terrorists. This was reinforced by repetitive showings of the crude lettering on the envelopes on TV. As test results began to filter out, the focus of the media changed to the "weaponization" of anthrax spores, i.e. milling them down to a diameter of one to three microns. (A micron is one millionth of a meter.) This required a degree of expertise beyond that of a single individual without access to a fairly sophisticated laboratory. After a spate of "speculation" in the media that a "right wing fanatic" might have been responsible, the FBI released a "profile" of its suspect. Predictably, they postulated a "loner" who may have worked in a laboratory and acquired a couple of test tubes of anthrax he kept in his basement for all these years. After the 911 tragedy this person, for his own reasons might have mailed the anthrax.
As test results confirmed the (Ames) strain of anthrax used in the mailings, attention began to focus on the army's top-secret bioweapon laboratory at Fort Detrick, Maryland. The Ames strain is one of the most virulent (deadly) strains available and was in high demand both for developing weapons and vaccines to protect against all strains. Ft. Detrick's records are incomplete but it is known to have furnished the Ames strain to Britain's Porton Down laboratory, a number of university and private labs and probably to Iraq. During the cold war, Ft. Detrick, Britain's Porton Down, Russia and South Africa produced and stockpiled large amounts of toxic biological and chemical weapons including anthrax. In 1969, in contemplation of a treaty signed in 1972, President Nixon ordered Ft. Detrick to cease production and destroy the stockpiles. Although research and development was done at Ft. Detrick, the actual production and storage was at the army's facility in the Pine Bluffs Redstone Arsenal in Arkansas.
Now, some thirty years later, the U.S. Government appears to be relying on the expertise of two cold war bioweapon veterans, Dr.'s William C. Patrick III, and Kenneth Alibek, President and CEO of Advanced Biosystems Inc. (ABS). Patrick was in charge of the anthrax "weaponization" program at Ft. Detrick. He developed a process that resulted in anthrax far more potent than that known to have been produced by Britain or Russia. He holds five secret patents on the process. The army's anthrax comprised up to one trillion spores per gram, double the amount other programs reached. To put that in perspective, if 10,000 spores is a lethal dose, then the two grams said to have been in the envelope addressed to Senator Daschle had enough for 200 million lethal doses. A gram is just one-twenty-eighth of an ounce. But even the 8 to 10 thousand spore number is misleading the public according to Edgar W. "Bud" Larson, one of several other Ft. Detrick veterans who granted on the record interviews to Scott Shane of the Baltimore Sun. Larson says that number (which he helped develop) is an average for lethal doses. Depending on several factors, 100 spores or less could be fatal. Larson was head of the aerobiology division at Detrick. Another veteran of the biowars, Norman M. Covert, adds that their experiments showed that spores of one to four microns easily escaped from ordinary envelopes, which have pores of ten microns. Another former Detrick expert is Manuel S. Barbeito who was in charge of decontaminating 75 to 100 buildings at Ft. Detrick after the program was shut down. He has doubts about the chlorine dioxide cleanup method that the EPA has chosen for the Hart Senate Office building. Barbeito says he experimented with many methods before settling on formaldehyde gas. All three experts are puzzled as to why the government has only contacted Patrick and not taken advantage of other expertise available.
Patrick has been a long time consultant to the government on bioweapons and bioterrorism. When the First Deputy of the USSR's bioweapons program (Kanatjan Alibekov) defected to the U.S. in 1992, Patrick was called in by the intelligence agencies to help debrief him. Alibekov, now known by his Americanized name of Kenneth Alibek has become a colleague of Patrick as President and CEO of Advanced Biosystems a wholly owned subsidiary of Hadron, Inc. Hadron, a large defense contractor describes itself as, "specializing in developing innovative technical solutions for the intelligence community, analyzing and supporting defense systems (including intelligent weapons systems and biological weapons defense)." Alibek's Advanced Biosystems has received more than $3 million in government grants (including one for $800,000 this October) for work on defenses against anthrax. Yesterday (Wednesday Dec. 5, 2001) Alibek testified before the House International Relations Committee. An Associated Press dispatch quotes him as saying of the mailed anthrax, "It was a primitive process, but it was a workable process. I would say that they are not very highly trained professionals," Alibek said of whoever sent the anthrax letters. Alibek's statement is in direct contradiction to the opinion of Dr. Richard Spertzel, former head of the U.N. weapons inspection program in Iraq and experts cited by the New York Times in a Dec. 3 article this week. Spertzel supported those experts contention that the mailed anthrax was top quality saying, "(This) is not the kind of thing you mess around with in a university lab." Spertzel, who also testified at the hearing, said the FBI's profile of the anthrax killer as a deranged loner "is a lot of hokum."
Lab experts cited by the New York Times say the mailed anthrax reached the one trillion spores per gram threshold and could only have been made using Patrick's patented process.While no other countries are known to have duplicated Patrick's process, there is an interesting sidelight involving one of the pieces of equipment involved in it. Charlie Trie, the Little Rock restaurant owner, long time friend of, (illegal) fund-raiser for Bill Clinton, and member of a Mafia-like Chinese Triad, according to the FBI, helped the Chinese germ warfare program obtain a 132-gallon medical fermentation tank. The equipment is an integral part of the process of producing toxic bacteria and export to China required a permit from the Department of Commerce. Trie met several times in China with Zhang Jianming, director of China's germ warfare program. He later arrange a trip to the United States for Zhang and accompanied him in his travels. One stop was Little Rock, Arkansas where Zhang was introduced to an American scientist. In a February 26th article last year, WorldNetDaily's Paul Sperry revealed that the American scientist named Peter Fu had invested $40,000 in a shell company set up by Trie to obtain the equipment for transshipment to China. Fu's wife worked for the company for a short time but dropped out after a few weeks. When interviewed by the FBI, Fu claimed the $40,000 was a loan to Trie. This sidebar is not meant to imply that China was the source of the mailed anthrax. Rather, its possible significance lies in the fact that Peter Fu (at that time) was the Deputy Director of the FDA's Division of Biochemical Toxicology in its National Center for Toxicological Research. The center is located on the grounds of the Pine Bluffs Redstone Arsenal, the site of anthrax production and storage. Fu's first loyalties may not lie with the U.S. According to his biography on the FDA website, Fu is still at that location as a research chemist. Are there dots to be connected in this mystery of the mailed anthrax? At the very least, there are a number of questions that need to be asked..and answered.
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ENRON, (BUSH PALS) cannibalize corp
Californians know this company. Biggest
giver of funds to BUSH campaign in 2000, and lots of cash to his campaign
earlier. DAY of election when they see he's ahead, they tripled the price
of natural gas for home heating (in chilly NOVEMBER) to state of CALIF.
causing our utilities to nearly go brankrupt. Seniors were freezing. We
couldn'tbuy food our gas bills were so high,hit out of nowhere, too. Gray
Davis did something, waved some magic wand,Gray Davis is our gov and old
Governeor Moonbeam minion. And gas prices were restored to semi normal
but it took six months during which they ate our flesh like piranhas.!
I still get snarly when I hear ENRON mentioned. The Enron people couldn't
eat california as planned, now their karma is nigh. They are mysteriously,
oddly bankrupt and walk away from their corp (probably with the money in
their pockets), and hopefully leave their dirty laundry strewn on ground
for FCC to find. pretty confident in a bush reign, they won't get HIT.
Wonder if there's enuf to bust 'em. They cannibalized the company. Investors
lost shirts, see article below:
Enron Collapse Stuns Wall Street
Dec 6th email@example.com
Via Workers World News Service
Reprinted from the Dec. 13, 2001
issue of Workers World newspaper
WILL IT SET OFF RIPPLES OR A TIDAL WAVE? ENRON
COLLAPSE STUNS WALL STREET
By Richard Becker
The collapse of Enron--just a month ago the seventh-ranked corporation on the Fortune 500 list--was as quick as it was complete. While many of the consequences of the Enron debacle are as yet unseen, its effects are already reverberating through the world's stock markets and banks. From more than $30 per share in late October, Enron's stock fell to 26 cents on Dec. 2. A year ago, it was trading atmore than $80 a share. The total value of the company's stock has fallen from over $80 billion to around $300 million in the same period. Last year, Enron's revenue was over $101 billion. It won the Financial Times's "energy company of the year" award. Until last month, a banner on the corporate headquarters read, "The World's Leading Company." But on Dec. 3, Enron became the largest U.S. corporation in total assets ever to file for bankruptcy, after Dynegy, another energy trading company, renounced its planned $9 billion takeover of Enron. Dynegy cited irregularities in Enron's financial reports. Announcing the cancellation of the merger deal, a Dynegy spokesperson said, "Enron had burned through $1.5 billion [advanced by Dynegy] in less than three weeks. Importantly, neither the treasurer nor the chief financial officer could explain where it went."
Certainly Enron executives have engaged in an enormous amount of the kind of cheating and falsifying that is endemic to capitalism. Just as certainly, however, deception was not the main cause of Enron's implosion. Underlying the transnational corporation's collapse is the world crisis of over-production, a crisis that has driven down energy prices around the globe. As the recession has spread from Japan and Latin America to Europe and the U.S., demand for energy has fallen and so, too, have prices. While much media attention has focused on the threat that Enron's demise poses for banks and other investors, those most devastated are the company's workers.
ENRON WORKERS LOSE PENSIONS, JOBS
As it announced its bankruptcy filing, Enron simultaneously fired 4,000 of 7,500 employees at its Houston, Texas, headquarters, and told the rest to stay home until they were called back. Thousands more of Enron's 21,000-strong workforce have been fired in England and elsewhere. Beside the thousands who have been abruptly fired, virtually the entire workforce have lost their pensions. The company's 401(k) pension plan appears to have consisted entirely of Enron stock. Workers were forbidden to sell any of this stock until they reached a minimum age of 54. Enron workers have agonizingly watched the total destruction of their pensions as the stock price first gradually dropped, losing 60 percent of its value over 10 months, then plummeted. Pension plans lost more than 99 percent of their value.
No such disaster confronted the Enron top executives, due to the simple fact that they could dump the stock of the company they were running into the ground while it was still worth something. Kenneth Lay, for example, sold 400,000 shares over the last year, at times when the price ranged from $42 to $80.
GLORIFIED PIRATES AND BUSH ADVISERS
Enron was labeled Houston's "leading
corporation" in recent years. The company paid $100 million to have the
baseball stadium where the major league Astros play named "Enron Field."
Enron was glorified by business magazines and politicians alike. And not
just any politicians--although the company spread the campaign contributions
around to those in a position to help its oil, gas and electricity trading.
Enron was one of the major donors to the campaign of George W. Bush. So weighty was Enron's influence that Bush made Kenneth Lay, then CEO of Enron, his chief energy adviser after winning the 2000 presidential election. In the winter of 2000-2001, Enron, along with Dynegy, Duke Power, Reliant and other energy traders took advantage of recent electricity deregulation in California. By manipulating the deregulated market, the energy traders were able to push prices up by more than 1,000 percent. Even California's emphatically pro-business Gov. Gray Davis called Enron a "pirate" company for its role in the state's energy crisis. Enron's investment in the Bush campaign paid off big-time. In February 2001, President Bush, advised by Enron's Lay, refused to place any cap whatsoever on California's electricity prices. But even the California windfall, amounting to hundreds of millions in super-profits, couldn't save Enron.
ENRON, OVER-PRODUCTION AND THE BANKS
Enron's holdings had spread worldwide since its founding 15 years ago. Today it owns 25,000 miles of natural gas pipeline in the U.S. and 8,000 miles more in South America, water treatment plants in Britain, power plants in Italy, Poland, Turkey, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Puerto Rico, and the Philippines, among others. Enron has a 65-percent stake in the giant new Dabhol power plant in Maharashtra, India, and much, much more. Enron's rapid expansion was premised on an ever-growing market for power. But the market has severely contracted in the past year. Oil prices have dropped from $38 to $18 per barrel, as demand fell. To finance its expansion, Enron borrowed billions. Now many big banks from England to Japan to the U.S. are holding loans that may be unrepayable, or repayable at only a fraction of their original value. Citigroup and J.P. Morgan reportedly have combined "exposure" of $1.7 billion, half of it unsecured. Four Japanese financial groups are expected to lose upwards of $8 billion.
But the biggest threat may be to several banks in India, which are said to be owed several billion dollars for the Dobhal project. India's finance minister, Yashwant Sinha, was quoted as saying that the Enron crisis "has created uncertainties." The scope of the Enron fallout is not yet fully known, and government, banking and stock market spokespersons are playing it down. But one Wall Street analyst, Marjin Smit, said on Dec. 3, "It makes you wonder if this is just the tip of the iceberg. Sentiment is really taking a blow based on this one situation." The BBC quoted another market analyst, who spoke only on condition of anonymity: "Everyone wants to make it look as if they weren't fooled by Enron. But underneath the calm exterior, a lot more companies are panicking than it may seem."
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