BEGINNING OF THE END!
— 4 —
EVIL IS ALSO INCREASING EXPONENTIALLY
we will learn below, some of this rapidly accumulating evil is
intentionally produced; some is just an accidental result of our modern
way of life.
us first consider the accidental and non-military problems:
one-third of all deaths worldwide are from infectious diseases. An
increasing number is caused by strange, new diseases never before seen in
1995, the Journal of the American Medical Association and 32 other
medical journals, worldwide, devoted an entire edition to emergent
infectious diseases. They had a lot to discuss.
cause is the fact that so many people are traveling and spreading disease
as they go. Ten million people are crossing international boundaries every
day. Almost all microbes have incubation periods lengthy enough to permit
international travel anywhere in the world before clinical symptoms begin,
thus greatly increasing the risk of global pandemics.
attack of influenza in 1918 killed 18 million people throughout the world.
If smallpox should return, it could kill millions. (Later we will learn
that there are rogue nations preparing to use it as a weapon against us.)
virus is extremely deadly. Hanta virus can produce a fatal respiratory
infection within a few minutes after being breathed in.
there is HIV and AIDS. Although totally unknown in early 1980, AIDS is
rapidly becoming a leading killer throughout the world. Lyme disease was
unknown only a few years ago; today it terrorizes those who fear exposure
new insects are causing serious problems. Containerized freight has
greatly accelerated the international transportation of goods. Thousands
of these large shipping containers are loaded and unloaded daily at U.S.,
and other, ports worldwide.
now known that hitchhikers travel with them: fungus, mold, disease germs,
insects, and rodents. As one example, it is strange but true that
thousands of used tires are shipped back and forth across the oceans.
Water in those tires harbors mosquito larvae and other floating insects.
to the activities of modern man, we now have killer bees, Formosa
termites, Egyptian Nile mosquitoes, and other very dangerous insects.
an extremely controversial subject, there are those who maintain that our
worldwide tree cutting, car exhausts, and smoke stacks are causing a
global warming effect which is beginning to produce major weather and
climate changes. We are told that, ultimately, it will melt enough polar
ice caps and glaciers to raise ocean levels and inundate the port cities
of the world.
Other gradually increasing ecological problems include these:
gradual enlargement of deserts all over the world.
wholesale cutting down of trees throughout third-world countries.
depletion—Our soil is disappearing. Polluted lakes and rivers are in
such bad shape no fish can live in them.
Ozone holes in the sky—letting deadly ultraviolet radiation rain
down on livestock and humans.
dead zones—Experts say we are losing our seas also.
elimination of plant and animal species—Every year more disappears
of resources—including water, minerals, and plants.
spills—which ruin fishing grounds, beaches, and ocean bottoms.
power plant accidents—If you want to wake up, read the book, We
Almost Lost Detroit.
waste dumps—both chemical and nuclear.
Within a mere generation or two, mankind is changing the entire globe! Species are becoming extinct at a rate one thousand times faster than at any earlier time in history. The massive tropical rain forests are being slashed. Deserts have widened 150% in the past century and a half. Tornadoes, hurricanes, floods, and earthquakes are rapidly intensifying.
what happens in one part of the world now affects every other. We used to
be national; now we are global.
“Wars, plagues, earthquakes, and famine rocked many an earlier social order. But those shocks and upheavals were contained within the borders of one or a group of adjacent societies. It took generations, even centuries, for this impact to spread beyond those borders.
“In our lifetime the boundaries have burst. Today the network of social ties is so tightly woven that the consequences of contemporary events radiate instantaneously around the world.”—Alvin Toffler, Future Shock (1970), p. 15.
all that were not enough, we are also faced with the biggest economic
crashes in our nation’s history. Never before has there been so much
over-extension of credit, coupled with such a large amount of private and
government debt. Never before have so many citizens thrown away so much
money on gambling, prostitutes, and pornography.
1998, a poll was taken to determine what the average American considered
to be the best place in which he could privately invest his funds for
later retirement. An incredible 58% said the lotteries!
Western civilization, particularly America, is headed downward financially—and rapidly. Two factors figure prominently:
national debt. Roosevelt pulled us out of the Great Depression of the
1930s by federal works programs paid for by federal debt. But the
government had almost no debt in 1929. Today it is so saddled with debt,
it could not rescue us from another massive depression.
trade agreements, which they successfully lobbied for, are enabling
businesses to move out of the country. Factories are closing and Americans
are being put out of work. When they go to the store, they are buying
products made by cheap labor (frequently semi-slave labor) overseas.
debt is greater than it ever has been. We are not prepared for the
economic hard times ahead. People are running their credit cards to the
hilt while big business keeps moving more and more factories and jobs out
of the country.
course, every generation experiences financial depressions—and they do
not bring us to the end. The present situation is different: Combine
our debts with our NAFTA and other foreign trade agreements,—and
there will be no returning to normal employment levels.
A general economic collapse will only intensify the panic when the other crucial factors discussed elsewhere in this chapter kick in.
But there is more: Thanks to computerization, e-mail, internet, cell phones, and fax machines, economic activity is also increasing at exponential speed. And that is itself unstabling. Mead, an international relations specialist warns:
“The faster capitalism goes, the more dangerous it gets. It does not frankly take a rocket scientist to predict that this will all end in tears.”—Walter Russell Mead, “The Coming Economic Collapse,” Esquire, October 1998, p. 97.
Instead of a national economy, we now have a global economy. Every nation is linked to every other. Economic integration on a global level leads to tight coupling. This is a condition of extreme interdependence, where linkages are inseparably connected. Such a tight market easily leads to a falling-dominoes effect from continent to continent.
market activity can suddenly produce shock waves which travel throughout
the world markets at nearly the speed of light. The situation is so
unstable that even the experts cannot predict what will happen next.
Garten, dean of the Yale School of Management, explains:
“What happens in one part of the world eventually will affect everything. But it might not be in the way that we expect, because the linkages are almost beyond human comprehension.”—Jeffrey E. Garten, in “Global Roulette, Crisis Past or Crisis Future?” Harper’s, June 1998, p. 40.
Treasury Department official, Roger Altman, called the global capital
markets “the nuke of the 1990s” that can produce “previously
(Roger Altman, quoted in Bill Powell, “The Other Asian Time Bomb,”
Newsweek, June 1, 1998, pp. 42-43). He
was discussing the fact that a single large overseas nation can
financially crash—with ripple effects which may bring the rest of the
world’s financial markets down with it. Our world is too small now.
5 - GOVERNMENT
CANNOT SOLVE IT
cannot expect the government to solve these problems, for they are
inherent in our very growth. Indeed, the exponential craze has also
invaded Washington, D.C.
“A runaway regulatory machine generates an increasingly impenetrable mesh of rules—45,000 pages of complex new regulations a year. Twenty-seven different government agencies monitor some 5,600 federal regulations that pertain to the manufacture of steel alone. Thousands of additional rules apply to the mining, marketing, and transport operations of the steel industry. A leading pharmaceutical firm, Eli Lilly, spends more time filling out government forms than doing heart-disease and cancer research. A single report from Exxon to the Federal Energy Agency runs 445,000 pages—the equivalent of a thousand volumes!”—Alvin Toffler, The Third Wave (1980), p. 394.
incoming congressman went to the health and welfare department of the
Executive Branch and asked for a booklet listing all their projects and
activities. He was told that no one there knew what was happening in that
large agency, and there was nothing in writing!
“A top White House official complains to me that even the president, supposedly the most powerful man in the world, feels impotent. ‘The president feels as though he is shouting into the telephone—with nobody at the other end.’ ”—Ibid, p. 395.
“When a team of political scientists investigated Washington, D.C. recently to find out ‘who runs this place,’ they came up with a simple, crushing answer. Their report, published by the American Enterprise Institute, was . . ‘The short answer . . would have to be, “No one. Nobody is in charge here.’ ”—Alvin Toffler, The Third Wave (1980), p. 396.
America is the best nation in the world. But its political leaders are succumbing to the exponential pressures they are dealing with. Because of this, they are not likely to recognize or be able to deal with the crisis just ahead of us.
“Built to the wrong scale, unable to deal adequately with transnational problems, unable to deal with interrelated problems, unable to keep up with the accelerative drive, unable to cope with the high levels of diversity. The overloaded, obsolete political technology of the industrial age is breaking up under our very eyes.”—Ibid, p. 411.
world leaders and their governments are not having any better success in
solving these problems.
6 - RELIGIOUS FANATICISM
a spark which alone could destroy a sizeable part of the world.
“Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction.”—Blaise Pascal.
is militant Islam that is the biggest threat. The politicization of Islam
is one of the most dangerous trends in an out-of-control world.
Israeli scholar and military advisor Yehezekel Dror warns of the “threat
of crazy states that are driven by high-intensity aggressive ideologies”
(Yehezekel Dror, “High Intensity Aggressive Ideologies as an
International Threat,” Jerusalem Quarterly of International Relations,
“Holy wars, committed crusaders, and martyrdom-seeking warriors are not relics of the past, but the most pressing threats of the present . . The proliferation of weapons of mass destruction make these ideologies to endanger ‘the very survival of the human species.’ ”—Ibid.
Kaplan has traveled incessantly in an effort to unravel our locked-in
“Beyond its stark, clearly articulated message, Islam’s very militancy makes it attractive to the downtrodden. It is the one religion that is prepared to fight!”—Robert D. Kaplan, The Ends of the Earth: From Togo to Turkmenistan, From Iran to Cambodia—A Journey to the Frontiers of Anarchy (1996), p. 107.
anything happens in the Near East, America tries to mediate peace—and is
thereby considered to be part of the enemy. Mohammed taught his followers
that when one of his followers dies in battle against the infidels, he
will instantly go to heaven and be forever waited on by 70 virgins, who
will feed and provide for his every comfort. Every day, more suicide
volunteers offer their services to carry out any mission assigned
them—against Israel, within America, or any other place they are told to
former high-ranking government official put it this way:
“If a group of Iranian mullahs
one day has a very long range ballistic missile—and decides that not
only they but all their countrymen can go to heaven if they just launch a
nuclear weapon at the ‘Great Satan’ [an Iranian nickname for
America]—that’s not the kind of people deterrence would work
against.”—“U.S. General: Nuclear Deterrence Offsets Need for
Missile Defense,” Aviation Week and Space Technology, September 2, 1996,
7 - THE NUCLEAR BOMB
chain reaction occurs when something keeps doubling. It is those
doublings—and the fact that they happen so fast—that gives a nuclear
bomb its destructive power.
other words, it is exponential! That is why it is so deadly.
know it only takes eighty doublings, occurring very fast, to produce the
explosion in a plutonium bomb?
“In the fissionable materials used in nuclear weapons, the fission is caused mainly by fast neutrons which travel only a distance of seven to ten centimeters before colliding with a nucleus, so that each doubling of the neutron population occurs in about 0.01 microseconds [one-hundred millionth of a second]. The power of compound interest is such that, beginning with a single fission, the time required for this doubling interval to cause fission [explosion] of one kilogram of fissionable material—is only the time required for eighty such doublings, or less than one microsecond [one millionth of a second]. This corresponds to an energy release equivalent to about seventeen kilotons [17,000 tons] of high explosive.”—Richard L. Garwin, “The Technology of Nuclear Weapons,” Arms Control Today, November/December 1997, pp. 6-7.
From A.D. 1500 to the present, the amount of potential power accessible at a single explosive detonation of a substance has increased ten billion times. This power can be used for good purposes, but it is equally available for purposes of evil.
“The destructive capacity of weaponry has been increasing exponentially throughout this century. Quite simply, humans are capable of killing other humans in greater numbers and more quickly than ever before.”—Harry Cohen, “Proliferation, Fragmentation, and Terrorism: A Disturbing Convergence of Threats,” The Brown Journal of World Affairs, Winter/Spring 1997, p. 58.
on this below. Think not that the nuclear threat is a thing of the past.
— 5 —
TOO MANY EVILS
MULTIPLYING TOO FAST
When things double too much and too
quickly—the resultant instability leads to destruction. That is the
situation in our world today. As
Garvin said, it is the result of too much “compound interest,” too
many ways, described above, our modern world is screaming toward a
situation so unstabling that the break, when it comes, will be terrible.
add to this another, a most terrible reason why we are on the edge of the
end: Speeding right along with all these other unstabling factors, evil
is also exponentially increasing!
is so much evil that is exponentially increasing at the same time!
“The interrelated dimensions of this crisis are population pressure, multiple forms of pollution, resource depletion,—and the danger of wars of mass destruction. It is the technological character of contemporary society that gives the planetary crisis its apocalyptic character.”—Richard Falk, This Endangered Planet: Prospects and Proposals for Human Survival (1971), p. 27.
Garvin’s plutonium bomb example, mentioned earlier, we have eighty
doublings occurring in one-millionth of a second. Think how explosively
destabilizing this is to plutonium.
consider that this same math is at loose in our world system today.
It is true that the doublings of good and evil are occurring slower than
weaponry terms but in relation to world history, it is taking place at
extreme rapidity. And every year everything is happening faster.
doubling of evil in our world is becoming a gargantuan monster. Not only
is wickedness increasing, but horrible new forms of it are being developed
before our eyes.
We live in the midst of a chain reaction, not only of technology, but also of evil: more crime, more prisons, more misery, more disease, more toxic waste. Worse food, worse air, worse drinking water, worse pollution, worse diseases.
now than ever before in human history: abortion, crime, drugs, gambling,
prostitution, shootings, vandalism, land mines, terrorism, genocide
seems that everything good is also being used for everything bad.
Consider the telephone: Although so helpful to the rest of us, it is
used by drug lords to conduct business. Crime bosses continue their work
from prisons via contraband cell phones. Prostitution services run by cell
phone from college domitories. Teenagers amassing huge bills by calling
900 phone sex lines. The number of “unanticipated consequences” of
modern technology are skyrocketing.
“All our knowledge has not ushered in a brave new world. It has simply increased our ability to perpetrate evil.”—Charles Colson, Loving God, p. 103.
marriage: It is
disappearing! Instead we find adolescent pregnancies, single parents,
homosexual parents, day-care centers, and experimental live-ins. The 2000
U.S. census did not include the word, “family,” because the government
precalculated that the number of real families (defined as a married
husband and wife living together) in America is no longer statistically
the internet and e-mail:
Although capable of being a great blessing, spamming (junk e-mail) is
becoming a major nuisance. Criminals are stealing credit card numbers and
transferring funds from other people’s bank accounts. Hackers have
penetrated corporate and government computers. Pornography is running
“We cannot foresee the unforeseen. We did not know PCBs in fish would not be metabolized away. We did not know mobility would disrupt family and community stability. We did not know inner city housing projects would turn into ghetto war zones. We did not know thalidomide would deform babies. We did not invent suburbs to throw our traffic patterns into chaos.”—Richard Swenson, Margin (1992), p. 31.
did not intend to do it—and we find ourselves shocked when so much good
technology, turns into something so bad. Dr. Jekyll has turned into Mr.
“Our solutions intensify the
problems they were intended to solve.”—Bob Goudzwaard, Idols of Our
Time, p. 11.
— 6 —
THE EVIL WILL ULTIMATELY
OVERWHELM THE GOOD
said that evil is also increasing exponentially. But keep in mind that, if
the negatives are sufficiently dangerous, they cannot be offset by the
positives—no matter how beneficial the positives are!
man can have a fairly healthy body, with good kidneys, heart, intestinal
tract, and liver. But if a bullet enters his head, he may die. The one
negative can outweigh many positives. We cannot simply subtract
negatives from positives and look at the total.
the negatives reach a certain critical mass, they bring very serious
trouble. When a certain critical mass of negative has accumulated, it will
reach the threshold of lethargy. At that point, the entire system will be
doomed, no matter how much positive has been accumulated.
though most terrible things are rapidly increasing in our modern world,
they are tied to technological progress which mankind refuses to slow or
stop. So we are going to continue in this fatal direction.
from the judgments of God against the ever-accelerating amount of
wickedness in our world, what are the factors at our disposal most likely
to destroy us?
First, there are the ongoing preparations for war:
“It is deeply disturbing to realize that in fifty-five centuries of recorded history there have been only 292 years of ‘peace.’ ”—William Goetz, Apocalypse Next (1981), p. 35.
he adds, “Furthermore, mankind has never yet fashioned a weapon that
hasn’t been used” (ibid.).
in our time, preparations for war have become a maniac concern.
Advanced new systems of horrible weaponry are constantly being developed
by the Western World. The second-rate powers are purchasing uranium and
plutonium, packing them into bombs and purchased warheads, and trying to
figure out how to make chemical and biological weapons. Off on the
sidelines, the “undeveloped nations” occupy themselves with borrowing
money, from the international bankers, and using it to purchase all the
small-arms firepower and land mines they can acquire.
the present time, world military spending is eight hundred billion dollars
annually. The manufacturing and selling of weapons to other nations is a
major industry for France, Russia, Germany, America, China, and several
cares if sixty million people perished in two world wars in the past
century; the nations are anxious to prepare for more. Since 1945, the
globe has experienced, not peace, but continuous war somewhere on the
special commission was granted access to CIA secrets about the foreign
missile threat. It concluded that Iran could build a ballistic missile
capable of blowing up New York City by 2003 (Bruce Auster,
“Should America Worry about Missiles Again?” U.S. News & World
Report, July 27, 1998, p. 25).
is well-known among intelligence experts that bankrupt Russia is selling
sensitive technology to several nations. China, Iraq, North Korea, Syria,
Sudan, and Russia are all planning things our leaders are worried about.
Add to this list, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and India.
2 - There
is the nuclear bomb:
1945 to 1989, the world was safe from nuclear attack because of MAD.
This is the acronym for the policy of “mutually assured
destruction.” If either Russia or America attacked the other, we
could be comforted with the happy thought that both would be totally
destroyed by nuclear-tipped ballistic missiles. But those days are ended,
for the Russian stockpile is quietly being sold for hard cash.
a period of several decades, the Soviet Union gradually produced hundreds
of metric tons of highly enriched uranium and plutonium, stockpiled at
various sites. But the containment of that material—keeping it from
the hands of terrorists and rogue nations—is a baffling puzzle. A
U.S. weapons expert explains:
“[U.S. military experts] now realize that the scope of the nuclear materials security problem within the former Soviet nuclear complex is much larger than was estimated when the original plans were formulated in 1994. At that time, the U.S. government estimated that approximately 80-100 facilities at several dozen sites . . contained weapons-usable nuclear materials. However, by early 1998, the Department of Energy had identified over 150 facilities at 534 sites containing such materials or related to their security.”—James E. Doyle, “Improving Nuclear Materials Security in the Former Soviet Union,” Arms Control Today, March 1998, pp. 12-13.
is this such a problem? First, all the terrorists and rogue
nations need is the raw material—the uranium or plutonium. Once they
have that, they can build the bombs. Second, the underpaid workers
at the storage sites are glad to secretly sell quantities of it. Bribery
and black market selling have been standard market procedure in Russia for
in a 1997 intelligence digest, a nuclear weapons expert, Graham Allison,
described the situation. Once fissionable material is obtainable, it can
easily be made into weapons. Transportation of the material is not
difficult. A simple bomb design can be made with less than 20 pounds of
would be easy to sneak such a bomb into America or another Western nation.
Many rogue groups want the nuclear material and are willing to pay a lot
to get it (Graham T. Allison, “The Number One Threat of Nuclear
Proliferation Today: Loose Nukes from Russia,” The Brown Journal of
World Affairs, Winter/Spring 1997, p. 65).
summarizes the problem in these words:
“Suppose that, instead of mini-vans filled with hundreds of pounds of the crude explosives used in Oklahoma City and New York, terrorists had acquired a suitcase carrying one hundred pounds of highly enriched uranium roughly the size of a grapefruit. Using a simple, well-known design to build a weapon from this material, terrorists could have produced a nuclear blast equivalent to 10,000 to 20,000 tons of TNT. Under normal conditions, this would devastate a three-square-mile urban area. Much of Oklahoma City would have disappeared. The tip of Manhattan, including all of Wall Street would have been destroyed.” Ibid.
is not difficult to make an atomic bomb.
Just put 5½ to 8 pounds of uranium or plutonium, in one end of a thick
steel tube, and an equal amount at the other end. Detonation occurs when a
smaller blast, triggered by a clock or air pressure, pushes them together.
Even Saddam can figure that out. Detailed instructions have been readily
available for years.
well-aware of what is taking place, Roger Spiller, a professor of Military
History at the U.S. Army’s Leavenworth Training Center, says this:
“A nuclear detonation in the atmosphere that is not a test is probable within the next ten to fifteen years, if only because groups, as well rogue states, will be acquiring the technology without also acquiring the diplomatic skills and bureaucratic control mechanisms for keeping a nuke without miscalculating.”—Roger Spiller, quoted in Robert D. Kaplan, Fort Leavenworth and the Eclipse of the Nation, p. 80.
the time that the Soviet Union collapsed in 1989, it and the United States
held 96% of the world’s nuclear weapons (Britain, France, China, India,
Pakistan, and Israel have the rest). The terrorists know where to get all
Russia is likely to sell part of its stockpile to cover financial needs,
right now the United States is spending $67 million per day preparing for
the possibility of nuclear war (“Defense Monitor,” Center for
Defense Information, February 1997, cited in “Nuclear Notes,” Peace
Research, August 1997, p. 5). Our leaders know it is coming; but, for
certain reasons, they would rather you not know.
3 - There
are other non-nuclear weapons of mass destruction:
several reasons, some of these maximum-death weapons are actually worse
than old-fashioned A-bombs.
acronym for “weapons of mass destruction” is WMD. Our leaders
worry a lot about WMD. They consider it one of the gravest threats today.
are three main types of WMD: (1) Nuclear weapons, (2) biological weapons,
and (3) chemical weapons. Do not underestimate the second and third.
They are easier to make, cost less, and require less technical ability.
how former Senator Sam Nunn describes some of the possibilities:
“Libyan terrorists launch a drone [unmanned] airplane into the [U.S.] capital as the President is delivering his State of the Union Address to Congress . . Or North Korea succeeds in developing nuclear weapons and is poised to attack South Korea, where 37,000 U.S. troops are stationed. Or Iraq rebuilds its chemical weapons arsenal and fires nerve gas into Kuwait aboard Scud missiles.”—Senator Sam Nunn, quoted in Washington Post, May 15, 1994, p. A11.
longer do the small powers have to declare open war on the United States.
All they have to do is sneak a number of weapons of mass destruction into
our country. Or they can merely threaten to shoot one over. A
nationally syndicated columnist puts it this way:
“Say a future Iraq moves on Kuwait again. The U.S. prepares to liberate the victim, but then the aggressor claims to have a missile aimed at Chicago. When the U.S. President warns Iraq of total annihilation, the dictator shugs it off as his way to heaven. The CIA estimates the chances at seventy percent that he is faking—but if he is not, there would go Chicago.”—William Safire, The New York Times, August 22, 1996, p. A25.
are many methods terrorists could use which are far more destructive than
The blowing up of hydroelectric dams around the country could kill
millions. Blowing up a ship carrying liquid natural gas could have the
effect of a Hiroshima-type bomb in a large port city. Distributing
super-lethal nerve gas over a city when wind conditions were right is
another dreadful possibility (Petr Beckman, The Health Hazards of Not
Going Nuclear, 1976; Bernard Cohen, “The Potentialities of Terrorism,”
Bulletin of Atomic Scientists, June 1976, p. 35).
mentioned by officials, but a very serious “weapon,” would be the
small airplanes parked at thousands of private airports in America. It
would be easy to load explosives into a small plane, fill it with fuel,
and fly it into government buildings. The combination of explosives and
aviation fuel would be terrible. Jetliners are also not adequately
protected. America is not guarding its airplanes!
Abraham Ribicoff “cited a CIA report which said there was a 79% chance
for terrorists to escape punishment and death, and an absolute certainty
they would get publicity” (Los Angeles Times, October 25, 1977).
people, who know so much more about what is happening than we do, are
“In the past, it was acceptable to consider these threats separately. To do so now, however, would be to ignore the gravity of a global problem unique to our era . . What is it about this period in our existence that has allowed these threats to converge?”—Harry Cohen, “Proliferation, Fragmentation, and Terrorism: A Disturbing Convergence of Threats,” The Brown Journal of World Affairs, Winter/Spring 1997, pp. 54, 58.
to nuclear bombs, the worst scenario includes chemical and biological
raw materials are relatively easy to get, and the finished products do not
have to be kept alive. But, unlike germs, the chemicals cannot reproduce.
So they can affect only a small area—unless a crop-dusting plane is
used, which could cover a large city.
a large terrorist syndicate could make tons of chemical weapons. But it is
known that Iraq has stockpiles of them. The 1995 Tokyo subway attack used
a chemical weapon (sarin gas). Because an extremely small amount was used
so few died.
feared are anthrax (a bacterium) and smallpox (a virus). Both are highly
lethal. Anthrax kills nearly 90% of its victims, but anthrax is not
kills about 30%, but can be transmitted with horrifying ease. Experts
believe smallpox is the worst of the two.
is turned into a weapon merely by releasing airborne spores for people to
breathe. A plane flying over New York City could easily do it. Within a
few days cold-like symptoms develop. By the time the symptoms are noted,
treatment is too late. Death follows within a week.
is the third major “weapons-grade” disease. Russian defectors have
declared that, before its collapse, the Soviet Union was developing new
super plagues (primarily strains of anthrax and smallpox which were more
lethal), against which there would be no known antidotes. Following that
collapse, it is far easier for foreign agents to bribe guards to sell them
quantities of it.
17 nations are believed to have biological weapons programs, many of which
involve anthrax. The only official sources of smallpox are at
the CDC in Atlanta, and Vector in Koltsovo, Russia. But U.S.
experts believe that Iraq and North Korea have secret stashes.
to Rear Admiral Cowan, deputy director for the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the
U.S. Department of Defense has concluded that anthrax is being made into
weapons by a number of nations. They are not planning to use it on their
“It’s the poor man’s atomic bomb. It’s ubiquitous. It’s everywhere. It’s easy to get hold of. It’s easy to grow.”—Michael Cowan, quoted in “Pentagon to Begin Anthrax Shots,” Associated Press, August 14, 1998.
U.S. military now requires that all personnel be vaccinated against
“The threat or use of nuclear-biological-chemical weapons is a likely condition of future warfare.”—A strategy outline, drafted for the Quadrennial Defense Review, quoted in U.S. News & World Report, May 12, 1997, p. 34.