From Jeanne Guillemin, one of the world's leading experts on anthrax and bioterrorism, the definitive account of the anthrax investigationIt was the most complex case in FBI history. In what became a seven-year investigation that began shortly after 9/11—with America reeling from the terror attacks of al Qaeda—virulent anthrax spores sent through the mail killed Bob StevenFrom Jeanne Guillemin, one of the world's leading experts on anthrax and bioterrorism, the definitive account of the anthrax investigationIt was the most complex case in FBI history. In what became a seven-year investigation that began shortly after 9/11—with America reeling from the terror attacks of al Qaeda—virulent anthrax spores sent through the mail killed Bob Stevens, a Florida tabloid photo editor. His death and, days later, the discovery in New York and Washington, D.C. of letters filled with anthrax sent shock waves through the nation. Federal agencies were blindsided by the attacks, which eventually killed five people. Taken off guard, the FBI struggled to combine on-the-ground criminal investigation with progress in advanced bioforensic analyses of the letters' contents.While the criminal eluded justice, disinformation swirled around the letters, erroneously linking them to Iraq's WMD threat and foreign bioterrorism. Without oversight, billions were lavished on biomedical defenses against anthrax and other exotic diseases. Worst of all, faith in federal justice faltered.American Anthrax is a gripping tale of terror, intrigue, madness, and cover-up....
|Title||:||American Anthrax: Fear, Crime, and the Investigation of the Nation's Deadliest Bioterror Attack|
|Number of Pages||:||336 Pages|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
American Anthrax: Fear, Crime, and the Investigation of the Nation's Deadliest Bioterror Attack Reviews
I’m a little dream-self short and stout.I’m the other half of Bruce – when he lets me out.When I get all steamed up, I don’t pout.I push Bruce aside, then I’m free to run about!With American Anthrax, Jeanne Guillemin examines the deadliest biological attack in U.S. history as a virulent strain of the Anthrax virus was seeded into letters mailed to major media outlets and U.S. government offices. The investigative portions of this book are riveting, and Guillemin plays master detective tracing the trail of the tainted correspondence alongside federal investigators and providing an introductory tour of the world of bio-hazards – from disease control to public health, to bio-labs, and bio-security. Although no one was ever convicted of the crimes, Guillemin offers a pretty convincing ‘case-closed’ argument against the likeliest perpetrator – mentally-troubled, military anthrax expert Bruce Ivins – and chapter 12 will send shivers up your spine as she peers into Irvins’ bizarre behaviors. This is a good one for all my friends in emergency management – a primer on disease detection and a warning of how far contamination can spread in a biological attack. For the casual reader, I would give the warning that the complexity of the anthrax attacks triggered an extra-heaping portion of ‘alphabet-government-soup’ – first responders ranging from the CDC to DHS, to FBI and USPS. Guillemin does a good job keeping things untangled for the most part; oddly, the densest – and by dense I mean dull – parts of the book are the prologue and conclusion, and a tedious detour into the government’s case for bio-weapons in Iraq in chapter 10 … honestly, unless you are a diehard reader (like me), you can probably skim or skip these sections … and get back to the hunt for the perpetrator of the anthrax attacks which is far more compelling.P.S. Perhaps the most chilling aspect of this book -- for me at least since I also happen to work for a major charitable disaster responder – was than Ivins was a loyal disaster volunteer. That connection actually allowed him to be present as the FBI sought evidence against another suspect. As FBI divers dredged a lake, ‘Bruce Ivins observed the dredging. A committed Red Cross volunteer, he answered a request to help with a food canteen for the FBI and the muddied divers. While the evidence search went on, Ivins dutifully served coffee – until an agent recognized him and, to Ivins’ chagrin, asked for his removal” (pp. 160-161). That a bad guy might try infiltrate one of our country's voluntary agencies to try to get close to our first responders is one of my personal nightmares.
An an interesting book that explores the who-done-it and why it took so long to figure it out of the just after 9/11 anthrax attack. Unfortunately, I fear that our country will never really learn that our enemy is not The Other. People very much like ourselves can be criminals too. While the likely anthrax murderer never went to trial (he committed suicide shortly before he was to be arrested) the evidence against him seems convincing. The "like me" aspect of Bruce Ivins was kind of eerie. We both grew up in small towns near Cincinnati, attended our local Presbyterian churches and graduated from high school in the 1960's. Like a number of my friends and relatives, he attended the University of Cincinnati. He seemed like a regular heartland American. Of course there is more to Ivins than that. And of course it would be a bleak would if no one trusted anyone. The best course to reduce risk would be to stop playing with bio-terrorism fire but I don't suppose there is much chance of that happening....
Interesting but rather dry... The early part of the book (describing the sequence of events as the 2011 anthrax letter attacks unfolded) is reasonably brisk and lively, but the book drags as it goes through the aftermath, culminating in the suicide of the primary suspect. Maybe it's my problem, but I wanted more characters and story, and less data and footnotes. Worth reading, especially for the analysis of the Bush administration's misguided determination to treat the anthrax letters as a foreign bioweapons attack (which they were not), but not the page-turner I had hoped for.
Jeanne Guillemin does a great job in bringing to life not only the investigation of the deadliest bioterrorism attack in United States history, but in emphasizing the factors that more traditional narratives might have missed. From the trials and disappointments of Brentwood Exposed, to the personal dramas of the major players, Jeanne has an even-handed and insightful report of this tragic narrative.
I found the first 100 pages of the book that described the initial attacks and immediate aftermath gripping, but, in what is probably a sad parallel to what happened after the attacks, I think the end of the book got bogged down trying to encapsulate all the different aspects of the story into something cohesive and readable, and I lost interest.
Interesting at first but I lost interest...goes on the did not finish shelf..