Bioterrorist Attack Case Study

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A Very Real Threat: Recognize the Risk of a Bioterrorist Attack In this day and age, it is surprisingly easy to obtain or create a bomb. On the black market alone, nuclear smuggling is a 100 billion dollar industry (havocscope). Of course, bombs are deadly and nations must always be diligent in guarding against nuclear terrorist attacks, but what about smaller, more undetectable threats to our lives? There are trillions of bacteria and fungi in the world, and possibly just as many viruses. Currently the CDC lists approximately 29 potentially weaponizable biological agents, ranging from Ebola to the Nipah virus. They are rather easy to come by in nature and some of them are easily synthesized in a laboratory, such as influenza, which has the …show more content…

Bioweapon production may cost as low as a dollar and would potentially infect hundreds of people over a large area of land (telemedicine). Bioweapons are also easily concealable for example, during the 2001 anthrax attacks the spores were simply placed into mail envelopes and distributed. Viruses and other bacteria would be potentially even easier to distribute due to their microscopic size. Unlike a nuclear bomb which would have to be stored in a large, very noticeable container and the casing itself being large and conspicuous a bioweapon may be sprayed from something as innocuous as an aerosol can or simply from a broken open container and have numerous fatalities. In other instances it would be enough to simply brush up against objects that have come into contact with infection or infected people themselves, such as the case of Jeffrey Amherst giving blankets used to cover those dead and dying of smallpox to the Native Americans during the French and Indian War ( Even if size was not a factor, radiation given off by an atomic bomb would be very noticeable, due to radiation sickness in the public and perhaps even the potential …show more content…

A death by a biological agent is not a quick one; in most instances it is a slow and very painful death. A fear such a death would definitely incite panic, making it much more difficult for rescue crews and medical personnel to respond, causing the problem to grow out of control (Eitzen 445) With nuclear terrorism, most deaths are immediate due to the sheer force of the explosion of a bomb. This may be startling to think about but death would be swift with possibly very little suffering if any at all. Another possible effect of bioterrorism is the possible lowering of one’s immune system due to lack of sleep caused by fear or by sickness itself, therefore making the disease much harder to fight off. Nuclear terrorism is archaic and unlikely yet it is still in the public eye so often we no longer realize it, yet Bioterrorism is hardly ever mentioned and it much more likely a dirty bomb going off in the middle of a city is not as likely as a weaponized strain of ebola being realeased into the air in this day and age. The inexpensiveness of production, easy distribution and mental toll Bioterrorism takes; it is a very real and very potent threat to our society as a whole. And it is high time it was recognized as

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