The Aralsk Nightmare

The New York Times has a story that could be right out of a Tom Clancy novel:
a Russian scientist may have sent a virulent strain of smallpox to Iraq. This Aralsk strain of smallpox was most likely the result of Russian biowarfare experimentation that escaped and caused a smallpox outbreak that was susequently covered up by the Soviet government.

This underscores the risk we face from Saddam Hussein. If Hussein were to release such a virus in a major city, millions would die, and there would be no guarantee that it could ever be traced back to Iraq. Given that set of circumstances, it is absolutely critical that Hussein is stopped before such an event can occur.

One thought on “The Aralsk Nightmare

  1. The New York Times orginally broke this story on June 15, 2002. I was doing research on Vozrozhdeniye Island, a former Soviet bio-weapons testing facility at the time, and the effects it was having on the surrounding areas due to the fact that it had recently joined the mainland due to the Aral Sea’s evaporation.

    It is all pretty grim stuff. It seems that this virus was altered and manufactured by the Soviets and was tested on the aforementioned island. Unfortunately, it escaped and sickened first, crew members who were checking fish populations and was then carried to Aralsk where there was a minor outbreak. (I will try to find you a link to the story.) It was kept a secret until sometime earlier this year, and was discovered, if I am not mistaken, by someone involved in the Nunn-Lugar Threat Reduction program, but I could be very wrong here.

    Anyway, yes, it does give more substantive reasons to invade Iraq and remove their weapons of mass destruction–and it also should create a more serious sense of urgency among those from the looney-left, but then again, who knows with those people. I can find no rational reason to disagree with you here. Nice post.

    One of your favorite “lefties”


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