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FTR #24 Biological Warfare and Persian “Gulf War Syndrome”

Lis­ten now: Side 1 [1] | Side 2 [2]

These seg­ments explore pos­si­ble bio­log­i­cal war­fare con­nec­tions to “Gulf War Syn­drome,” begin­ning with an exam­i­na­tion of an indi­vid­ual (Dr. Joshua Leder­berg) involved with both a 1994 Pen­ta­gon study that min­i­mized “Gulf War Syn­drome” and a com­pa­ny that was heav­i­ly involved in ship­ping poten­tial­ly dead­ly micro-organ­isms to the Iraqis. The pro­gram exam­ines a num­ber of oth­er pos­si­ble bio­log­i­cal war­fare con­nec­tions to “Gulf War Syn­drome” includ­ing: afla­tox­in (a fun­gus-derived, liv­er can­cer-induc­ing bio­log­i­cal muni­tions com­po­nent which may have been con­nect­ed to some of the “boil­er-plate” research which con­tributed to the lab­o­ra­to­ry devel­op­ment of AIDS); the pos­si­bil­i­ty that some of the vet­er­ans may have been used as human guinea pigs for the test­ing of micro-organ­isms and/or exper­i­men­tal vac­cines; the dis­ap­pear­ance of the shot records of many of these vet­er­ans and the dis­cov­ery by Drs. Garth and Nan­cy Nicol­son of an infec­tious micro-organ­ism (a mycoplas­ma), which appears to have been genet­i­cal­ly altered through the addi­tion of a gene from HIV, ren­der­ing it more path­o­gen­ic. The pro­gram also explores the pos­si­bil­i­ty that the Unit­ed States may have giv­en the Iraqis this mycoplas­ma to use against the Ira­ni­ans (dur­ing the Iran-Iraq war) and the pos­si­bil­i­ty that it may have been used in air-burst scuds against U.S. troops. (Record­ed in Decem­ber of 1996.)