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It’s tempting to see gunmen on the grassy knoll. It’s fun to imagine Dick Cheney sending encrypted instructions to Osama bin Laden via carrier pigeon. It’s intriguing to wonder if James Hatfield—the author who blew the lid off of Bush’s youthful cocaine abuse in Fortunate Son—actually killed himself in his hotel room as reported, or if he was murdered by Joe Allbaugh’s hair.
It’s something we can’t help doing—connecting the dots and filling in the blanks. Conspiracy theories abound when the official story lacks conclusive evidence or it’s full of holes. Sometimes the official story just stinks, and the conspiracy theory is closer to the truth than we’re comfortable admitting. Sometimes CTs are plain retarded (WTC was a controlled demolition, even though the towers pancaked from top to bottom, not bottom to top, as would happen in a controlled demo).
And sometimes, boiling just below the debate between the official story and the understandable skepticism is the bigger story. And the case of Bruce Ivins is a prime example. Before getting to that bigger story, let’s review the some of inconsistencies of the case:
The FBI can't place Ivins in Princeton, NJ—where the anthrax was mailed from, or anywhere between there and Ft. Detrick on the day they say he mailed the weaponized letters. The motive we're given by the Feds and The LA Times is that Ivins would gain financially from the larger anthrax vaccine budget. Really?
The FBI came out a few days after Ivins’ death pointing to The Smoking Flask. It, say would be prosecutors, was in Ivins’ sole possession and is contaminated with the same strain of anthrax used in the 2001 attacks. But as it turns out, nearly one hundred people at the Ft. Detrick lab had access to the same strain; so do roughly fifteen other labs across the country.
Then there’s the idiot "theripist" with a lengthy criminal record, the sorority stalking from twenty years ago, the "revenge fantasies" that may have come before the attacks or after the Feds drew Ivins as a person of interest: It's all pretty shaky. The case is weak, no doubt.
Remember those letters? The childlike printing (the return address was from a nonexistent elementary school) on the notes address to NBC and The New York Post read:
Daschle & Leahy's read:
The first letters were postmarked September 18th—one short week after 9/11. Are we to believe that a scientist with relatively little to gain financially (tens of thousands) whipped up some weaponized anthrax just because he saw an opportunity?
Is Bruce Ivins a pawn in a massive government cover up? Or is it simpler? Is this guy another Ted Kaczynski—a regressive-dual-personality-Unabomber?
In an e-mail dated December 15, 2001 Dr. Ivins wrote:
So, the guy's a nut. And as it turns out, there was also an unreported anthrax spill under Ivins' watch mere months before the attacks. Maybe he did it. I'm not qualified to say.
most damning evidence is his suicide—which proves absolutely nothing.
Americans shouldn't be satisfied with the case, or the way it’s
being reported in the mainstream media. But whether the child-like guile
employed in the anthrax notes was Bruce Ivins' "dream-self"
evident in his kiddie limericks (remember the imaginary elementary school),
or the work of some nefarious conspiracy yet to be proven doesn’t
On October 26, 2001, ABC’s Brian Ross cited “three well-placed but separate sources,” who claimed the anthrax used in the attacks contained bentonite, a kind of clay that ABC argued tied the anthrax to Saddam Hussein’s biological weapons program. The story was and is complete bullshit, but was referenced repeatedly by other news outlets in the run-up to war. Amazingly, the anonymous sources got their information from an “urgent series of tests conducted at Fort Detrick, Maryland, and elsewhere.”
Salon columnist Glen Greenwald, who’s been making Swiss cheese of the FBI case against Ivins, has called the ABC transgression “the single greatest, unresolved media scandal of this decade.” Due to Greenwald’s diligent reporting on the matter, ABC eventually issued a correction—and only seven years too late.
Bush mentioned Iraqi anthrax in his January, 2002 State of the Union. Colin Powell even mentioned the anthrax attacks at his February speech to the UN. Administration surrogates talked about it endlessly on political talk shows. It’s the same old story: Hack reporter meets anonymous government sources, reporter unwittingly disseminates propaganda, administration uses the story to further its insidious ends and we all pay the price. (See: Judith Miller, Con Coughlin, FoxNews, etc.)
Was Bruce Ivins a patsy or a mad scientist? While we’ll likely never be privy to enough evidence to say conclusively either way, we shouldn’t turn a blind eye to what this case meant to an administration hellbent on furthering its case for war.
And that’s the real conspiracy, the one we know for sure is true.
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