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A little-noticed news item in The Wall Street Journal (Nov. 9) reports that the extremely virulent form of anthrax – the Ames strain – was kept alive by the U.S. Army, which has for years financed academic research about anthrax for possible germ warfare use. Whoever got hold of the anthrax and mailed it to various politicians and news organizations. apparently stole it from one of seven laboratories financed by the Army. So while we don’t yet know whether the anthrax attacks are part of Osama bin Laden’s terrorist campaign, we do know that they are the product of the Army’s germ-warfare program and the loose security around its research facilities.

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