"apparently the first time that non-US organisations have been targeted. "
November 2, 2001 7:36 AM   Subscribe

"apparently the first time that non-US organisations have been targeted. " in pakistan. no one infected but traces found.
posted by m2bcubed (17 comments total)
Well, and remember that I am generally a pacifist, it looks like there is less chance to doubt the origins of the anthrax or at least doubt an association with the whole Afgan/Al Quaida thing. It perplexes me how by dragging an Islamic nation kicking and screaming into the middle of the action is going to help their chance of support from even somewhat militant Islamic nations. Attacking what is allegedly their own can't generate support in moderate nations. It'll be interesting to watch.
posted by shagoth at 8:23 AM on November 2, 2001

man i hope you are right, shagoth, about less doubt there is an al queda connection. i really want to believe it's not a u.s. crackpot. but i don't see how this clears anything up -- the letters have been trying to implicate islamists from the start and sending them to pakistan is a logical next step in that implication.
posted by danOstuporStar at 8:41 AM on November 2, 2001

possibly germany as well.
unfortunately it still could be a US crack pot. makes more sense actually for a US person to try to send it to pakistan than the 'islamic nation' doing it to themselves.
posted by m2bcubed at 8:54 AM on November 2, 2001

To me this news seems to point away from the "lone US crackpot" theory... Apparently the Germany letter had a German postmark on it. Haven't heard where the Pakistan letter originated. If it was a Unabomber type person, would they be spending their time flying all around the world to mail the letters? And would they have the proper names and addresses for targets in all these different countries? I suppose it is possible, but it seems less and less likely.
posted by spilon at 9:12 AM on November 2, 2001

Not sure what "genereally a pacifist" means (like sort of pregnant?) but th eletter went to a paper that has been supporting America and the Pakisatan govt and not to an "ally" of the Muslim cause within the country.
posted by Postroad at 9:13 AM on November 2, 2001

Anthrax was also found in mail at the US embassy in Lithuania.

BBC World Service is now reporting a case in Germany as well.

This is no longer a US issue.
posted by Geo at 9:36 AM on November 2, 2001

Frankly, what troubles me the most is that some of what what appear to be copycat mailings from unrelated cranks contain *actual 'thrax* -- I mean, how freakin' available is this stuff?
posted by donkeyschlong at 10:23 AM on November 2, 2001

"apparently the first time that non-US organisations have been targeted."

They mean besides Kenya? Germany? Lithuania?
posted by Mo Nickels at 10:44 AM on November 2, 2001

The first German case is just half an hour away from my hometown. An envelope sent to the job centre (sic!) was tested to contain Anthrax. The sender written on the letter was simply "Ahmed in Islamabad" (sic!) and the letter was from Germany, because it had a German stamp (sic!). [source in german]

This particular case just doesn't make sense to me. It looks more like a copycat crime by someone who is incredibly stupid. But where do they get real Anthrax from?
posted by arf at 10:57 AM on November 2, 2001

Hey guys-no fooling-they just announced on our local radio station that anthrax was found in a local motel here.....a maid walked into a room-noticed a powdery substance-to make a long story short it tested positive for anthrax.....

This is in Fayetteville, NC....for those of you that may not know we are where Fort Bragg is located........the fact it was found in a motel room makes me a bit nervous....
posted by bunnyfire at 11:01 AM on November 2, 2001

This story says the letter in Pakistan was hand delivered.
posted by argon405 at 11:05 AM on November 2, 2001

Update: The German cases were hoaxes. [source in German]
posted by arf at 11:47 AM on November 2, 2001

here the stuff has been turned over to the FBI for further testing....the motel has been evacuated and the guests relocated to a local rec center(coincidentally down the street from where I live....)
WFNC has kicked Rush Limbaugh to the curb and is on the radio taking calls and interviewing local officials....i don't know yet if this is overreaction but if this is the real thing we are the first in the South to get the "privilege"....evidently there is still a possibility of a false positive on the testing in the field but they are taking this quite seriously.

posted by bunnyfire at 12:14 PM on November 2, 2001

oh yeah...the stuff was found in a sealed plastic container......
posted by bunnyfire at 12:16 PM on November 2, 2001

According to this, there was a negative test result, and a positive test result on the stuff in Fayetteville. They've sent it off for better testing.

I wouldn't worry too much; you're still more at risk of a traffic accident than this, especially in an army town.
posted by argon405 at 12:39 PM on November 2, 2001

I am not particularly concerned about catching anthrax(btw I heard the diff between anthrax and flu is that with anthrax you don't get a stuffy nose)...it is just that living in an army town...well, we kinda take things PERSONAL here...war affects us personally and economically....the radio has also just informed us that an envelope containing a white powder has been found at a small local shopping center...and THAT one is also down the road from my home....
of course the radio station is treating all this like Armageddon, which i am sure will scare the crap out of all the old ladies not to mention the young military wives whose husbands are TDY or deployed or whatever....the flames of hysteria are getting fanned pretty fierce and it is annoying me to no end...not to mention I missed the last hour of Rush Limbaugh because of this :-)
Anyhow I thought i would tip off the mefi crowd as nothing has hit the national media that I know of....it will be a couple of days probably before we are totally sure one way or the other.
posted by bunnyfire at 2:11 PM on November 2, 2001

BBC reports Germany's anthrax 'false alarm': no indications of anthrax detected in the objects found in Thuringia and Schleswig-Holstein.
posted by Carol Anne at 2:35 PM on November 2, 2001

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