From the Middle East Times:
"WASHINGTON -- In violation of the US Code and international law, the Bush administration is illegally developing offensive germ warfare capabilities on an unprecedented scale. In fact, it is spending more on such weapons (in inflation-adjusted dollars) than the $2 billion spent on the "Manhattan Project" that made the atomic bomb in World War II.
So says Francis Boyle, the professor of international law who drafted the Biological Weapons Anti-Terrorism Act of 1989 enacted by Congress. He states the Pentagon "is now gearing up to fight and 'win' biological warfare" pursuant to two Bush national strategy directives adopted without "public knowledge and review" in 2002.
The Pentagon's Chemical and Biological Defense Program was revised in 2003 to implement those directives, endorsing "first-use" strike of chemical and biological weapons (CBW) in war, says Boyle, who teaches at the University of Illinois, Champaign.
Terming the action "the proverbial smoking gun," Boyle said the mission of the controversial CBW program "has been altered to permit development of offensive capability in chemical and biological weapons!"
The same directives, Boyle writes in his book Biowarfare and Terrorism, "unconstitutionally usurp and nullify the right and the power of the United States Congress to declare war in gross and blatant violation of Article 1, Section 8, Clause 11 of the United States Constitution."
For fiscal years 2001-04, the Federal government funded $14.5 billion "for ostensibly 'civilian' biowarfare-related work alone," a "truly staggering" sum, Boyle wrote. Another $5.6 billion was voted for "the deceptively-named 'Project BioShield,'" under which Homeland Security is stockpiling vaccines and drugs to fight anthrax, smallpox, and other bioterror agents, Boyle wrote. Protection of the civilian population is, he said, "one of the fundamental requirements for effectively waging biowarfare."
The Washington Post reported December 12 both houses of Congress this month passed legislation "considered by many to be an effort to salvage the two-year-old Project BioShield, which has been marked by delays and operational problems." When President Bush signs it, the law will allocate $1 billion more over three years for new research "to pump more money into the private sector sooner."
"The enormous amounts of money" purportedly dedicated to "civilian defense" that is now "dramatically and increasingly" being spent, Boyle writes, "betrays this administration's effort to be able to embark on offensive campaigns using biowarfare."
Boyle said Federal spending has co-opted and diverted the US biotech industry to biowarfare, pouring huge sums into university and private sector laboratories. According to Rutgers University molecular biologist Richard Ebright, over 300 scientific institutions and 12,000 individuals today have access to pathogens suitable for biowarfare and terrorism. At the same time, Ebright found, the number of grants by the National Institute of Health to research infectious diseases with biowarfare potential has shot up from 33 in the 1995 to 2000 period to 497.
Academic biowarfare participation involving the abuse of DNA genetic engineering since the late 1980s has become "patently obvious," Boyle said. "American universities have a long history of willingly permitting their research agendas, researchers, institutes, and laboratories to be co-opted, corrupted, and perverted by the Pentagon and the CIA."
Ok so the guy has some nice corroborating evidence but no real proof. Down here in the choir that Boyle is fortunately not preaching to, we know that all US biological defense research has been "dual-use," ever since the end of WWII.
It is rather illegal, however, to develop new strains of pathogens for the sole purpose of testing their capabilities as a biological weapon. Even under the guise of biodefense, offensive biologicals are not permitted by Geneva, and a host of other international treaties. Why this has gone on for over 50 years without the US Presidents who OK'ed these programs getting hit by an international war crimes tribunal is simple: we have nukes and bundles of cash, m'kay?
So we know that the University of Iowa is covering mumps and norovirus, I wonder what the other big biotech schools are up to?