back to article The anthrax scare: Case and flask closed

When the US government closed the anthrax case recently, the committee to clear Bruce Ivins and all the conspiracy theorists again emerged from the closet. Because the case took so long and the bioterrorist was at the center of the US biodefense research community, careers and reputations were made and lost on it. The …


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  1. Anonymous Coward


    Live By The Spore, Die By The Spore.

    Ah no, it was about the sword. Sorry.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Cyber War!

    Forget Anthrax, that was the OLD way our enemies were attacking us, now they are CYBER ATTACKING! Out with the old virus in with the new virus!

    Invest in defending American children from Cyber Attacks, or you HATE children!

    Here, I have this new cyber enemy detection device, only $38000 each! Just insert a glossy card with a picture of the energy signature of the virus into the belt mounted holder, and hold the rods balanced in your hands! Works using electron charge coupled static electricity, no batteries required!:


    Every US defence contractor.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      FAIL we'll have to kill him

      Bugger. He's on to us now. We have his IP address, the team says we'll have him hunted down by dinner time today. We'll erase his comment some time tomorrow

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Big Brother

    the Iraq connection ..

    What is curious is the targets of the anthrax mailings including Democrats Tom Daschle and Sen. Pat Leahy (D-Vt), and NBC News anchor Tom Brokaw. And the timing of the scare, within a week following 9/11. It being generally assumed at the time that the source of the anthrax were Islamic terrorists. There being no firm evidence that Ivins was the source of the anthrax and perviously most any certified lab, including some overseas ones, could get samples through the post.

    There's also the question as to why Ivins would post pretend Islamic terrorists msg with the anthrax. What possible motivation has been forwarded by the investigators. Why did Ivins target those particulal targets. It's also curious that they waited until after his death to accuse him.

    "the anthrax in the tainted letter sent to Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle was laced with bentonite"



    Do you believe this crap, Dascombe?


    It's not our job to believe it, Lewis. Our job is to tell the people --

    1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

      Not to mention the useful suicide...

      ...of the main suspect, apparently in a manner that one is not advised to try. Did he do it out of spite?

      Well, maybe.

      Compared to the JFK being offed by Oswald narration (which I happen to think is rather correct), this story is rather murky.

    2. Youngdog
      Thumb Up

      Great quote AC


  4. John Smith 19 Gold badge
    Thumb Up

    Let's not forget his financial stake

    in the anthrax vaccine manufacturing company he was invovled in.

    What. Americans *not* panicing. Unacceptable!

    They *have* to be reminded how much they *need* a good (not unreasonably priced) vaccine.

    Means, motive and opportunity.

    Mind you I always thought psychopaths as a group are the *least* likely to take their own lives.

    Case closed.

    1. I didn't do IT.
      Big Brother


      Does that include those with Narcissistic Personality Disorder? Or is that a Sociopath? NPD would definitely not commit suicide; its the rest of us that need to die for them, natch!

      You know - like all the rest of the politicians?

      1. John Smith 19 Gold badge

        I didn't do IT.

        "Does that include those with Narcissistic Personality Disorder? Or is that a Sociopath? NPD would definitely not commit suicide; its the rest of us that need to die for them, natch!"

        Yes NPD sufferers don't seem the kind to end their own lives.

        I paraphrase earlier coverage in El Reg at the time of his death. IIRC he did seek psychiatric and said shrink reported to the authorities that he was a potential danger and she was scared of him.

        "You know - like all the rest of the politicians?"

        Careful. That almost sounds like an implied threat to the state. If you're American you might like to see what could happen to you under the Patriot Act.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    truth stranger than fiction.

    Fascinating tale, and well done to the investigators. One part that puzzles me though is how come he passed vetting with his mental health problems, and whether there should be a two-man rule for people working with this stuff.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      Two man rule...

      Cool! That just means expensing for *DOUBLE* the amount for grafts, [child] prostitutes, and bribes to superiors...

      WHAT DO YOU MEAN PUBLIC CHANNE.................................

  6. Rick Brasche

    this has all the hallmarks of a good movie

    you've got horrible deaths, mysterious letters, government agencies, psychological disturbances, obsessions over female colleagues, paranoia, stalking, attempted framing, genetic evidence, secret codes, hidden agendas to make money, media control, terrorism, fraud, dumpster diving, cutting edge investigative lab analyses, and good ol- fashioned gumshoe detective work.

    I can see it now. Lab investigator is some ridiculously hawt actress who they put glasses on and we're supposed to believe she's a nerd. Well aged pretty boy actor plays the bitter investigator who's seen it all and doesn't buy into the "CSI stuff". Throw in some ridiculous BS love conflict (cuz the only way to be "adult" is sex sex sex according to Hollywood and the BBC) and weed out the boring parts (science is HARD for Hollywood yanno). have it BASED ON A TRUE STORY!!! and we've got a blockbuster!

    1. Mike Powers

      Not a bad idea!

      It's a neat twist on the usual story; in this case, the Old Wise Mentor is actually the one who they've been looking for all along.

  7. solarian
    Paris Hilton


    I didn't read the PDF, but assuming the summary is accurate, I think it curious that whilst this guy believed he was being monitored he still (presumably) thought his own "counter-surveillance" efforts would go unnoticed. Well, I suppose he was a bit stressed out.

    Paris because... sometimes we all know we're being watched online.

  8. David Stever

    How did Keyser Soze do it?

    I want to know how Keyser Soze did the original anthrax attacks and got close enough to Ivins to kill him.

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