Posts Tagged ‘FBI’
by Robert Pate
ON OCTOBER 4, 2001, reporters in Florida announced the first case in 25 years of a person contracting the deadly bacterium anthrax. The following day, Robert Stevens, the photo editor of the Florida-based tabloid Sun, died. His death was the beginning of the Anthrax Mystery, America’s worst—and most baffling—case of bio-terrorism. Days later, four other persons in the New York City and Washington, DC areas would die from anthrax spores that leaked from tainted letters sent through the mail. Seventeen others would become infected, and hundreds of millions of dollars would be spent on cleaning up contaminated office buildings and postal facilities. All of these events came just a few days after the tragedy of September 11. It appeared the terrorists had struck again, but this time the attack was biological.
Investigators believe seven letters containing anthrax spores were mailed. Four of the seven are thought to have been mailed on the same day and addressed to major media outlets in New York City: ABC News, CBS News, NBC News, and the New York Post. Of these, only the NBC and New York Post letters were recovered. Letters believed to be addressed to ABC News and CBS News offices caused two persons to develop anthrax infections. One was a seven-month-old boy brought in by his mother, a producer at ABC News; the other was an assistant to Dan Rather at CBS. These letters were never found and were likely discarded.
The two recovered letters did not have a return address but were postmarked September 18, 2001 in Trenton, New Jersey. These letters contained identical messages tending to indicate that the perpetrators were Islamic terrorists. The notes read, “09-11-01, THIS IS NEXT, TAKE PENACILIN [sic] NOW, DEATH TO AMERICA, DEATH TO ISRAEL, ALLAH IS GREAT.”
These are the sources used by researcher Robert Pate in his article “The Anthrax Mystery: Solved.”
The letters and notes:
Ed Lake, www.anthraxinvestigation.com
“Analysis of the Anthrax Attacks,” by Barbara Hatch Rosenberg, www.fas.org
“Brokaw’s aide tests positive, Suspicious letters to NBC, N.Y. Times sent from St. Petersburg, authorities say,” by David Ballingrud, Mike Brassfield, and Wes Allison, St. Petersburg Times, October 13, 2001.
“Anxious about Anthrax,” by Sharon Begley and Michael Isikoff, Newsweek, October 22, 2001.
“Sorting the Mail, Searching for ‘a Shadow Enemy,’” by Guy Gugliotta, October 28, 2001.
“Anthrax Pervades Florida Site, and Experts See Likeness to That Sent to Senators,” by Andrew C. Revkin and Dana Canedy, New York Times, December 5, 2001.
Graysmith, Robert AMERITHRAX The Hunt for the Anthrax Killer. New York 2003, pages 56, 67,104,105.