Did the US Army spray bioweapons on your family?
That depends on where you and your immediate ancestors have lived. If in the SF Bay Area, the DC Beltway, Hawaii, Alaska, New York, Florida, the Midwest (and other places), I have bad news.
Is COVID-19 bioweapons technology?
RFK Jr. is saying that.
But isn’t that outlandish?
Not if They did it before.
… [G]erm warfare testing is not merely a matter of history.
The possibility of spraying the public again has been left open.
—Leonard A. Cole
On the strength of recent news, more and more people are now taking the lab-leak hypothesis seriously. Given the evidence, I believe this was long overdue. Bret Weinstein & Heather Heying (and others who prominently stuck their neck out to defend this hypothesis) had it right from the beginning.
The lab-leak hypothesis claims that SARS-COV-2 (SARS2)—the bat virus responsible for COVID-19—was developed in China at the Wuhan Institute of Virology, better known as ‘the Wuhan lab,’ where they specialize in giving SARS viruses from bats added gain of function (GOF) for attacking humans, and where the first cases of COVID-19 were documented.
To Robert F. Kennedy Jr., who is running for president of the United States, this all reeks of biowarfare research.
About Shi Zhengli (or Zhengli-Li Shi), the most important GOF researcher at Wuhan, and Ben Hu, her right-hand man (recently identified as very possibly the first COVID case), Kennedy observes the following:
“[They] got their funding directly from NIH [US National Institutes of Health]. And NIH taught them the technology (…) not only for (…) making these viruses more infectious, more virulent, more deadly, [but] also this technology called ‘seamless ligation’ technique which is just a bioweapons technique for concealing human tampering on engineered viruses.”
If Kennedy is right about this second technology, that’s kind of a big deal. Because: Why would the NIH want to conceal their tampering of viruses?
NIH means National Institutes of Health. Health. Not war. Hence, according to the official story, the NIH was making dangerous viruses in the lab so they could be ready for future dangerous viruses in the wild, and save our lives. But then they’d want the tampering on their lab viruses to be obvious—just in case, you know, one of these augmented viruses ever escaped, so they could recognize it right away and have a better chance of fighting it. And save our lives. So why then erase the evidence of tampering?
Kennedy says, “It’s the inverse of what you would do if you were interested in public health. It’s just, um, it’s bioweapons technology.”
Now that’s a rather serious accusation: COVID-19 is a bioweapon? A biological weapon of mass destruction? And the US was developing that with the Chinese? Whoa…
Kennedy has been called a ‘conspiracy theorist’ for making accusations against the US bosses on this level of gravity on various topics. Predictably, the mainstream media have portrayed him as a looney-tunes. And some in the alternative media have done the same.
But are Kennedy’s accusations outlandish? That depends on the historical context. You be the judge. Here follows the historical context.
On 8 March 1977, US Army spokespeople were called to testify before a powerful committee of the US Senate. The senators wanted to know: Had the US Army conducted secret, open-air, biowarfare experiments on populated areas in the United States during the period 1949-69? The Washington Post reported the next day that the army had confessed: Yes, they had.1
What was the scale of this?
Well, consider—as just one example—Operation Sea Spray (1950): the release of a bacterium in the San Francisco Bay Area. A brief CBS note explains that
“In what sounds like a conspiracy theory, the fog over San Francisco was used by the U.S. military … as a way to mask the spreading of a biological agent … A Navy minesweeper went back and forth for a couple of days in September spraying a bacteria called Serratia marcescens in a mist that was unnoticed due to the region’s fog.”2
It does sound like a conspiracy theory because conspiracy theories make claims with this precise structure: big bosses inside and outside of government do something awful in secret against the rights and liberties of the citizens. And this was a conspiracy.
“Some have suggested,” writes Smithsonian Magazine, “that [this] release forever changed the area’s microbial ecology.”3 Well, what else could one suggest? A new organism was introduced into the microbial ecology! And it also changed the local health statistics: this bacterium can cause respiratory tract infections, urinary tract infections, septicemia, and endocarditis (heart-valve infections).4
Surprising? Outrageous? Shocking? Chilling? Terrifying? Sit down. Catch your breath. Have a drink. This was nothing. The San Francisco ‘test,’ writes Smithsonian, was just “one of hundreds” (hundreds!) “carried out in the 1950s and 1960s.” The US Army confessed to a total of 239 such ‘tests.’
Writes Business Insider:
“Low flying airplanes would take off, sometimes near the Canadian border, ‘and they would fly down through the Midwest,’ dropping their payloads over cities … [and] … machines … would [also] release clouds from city rooftops or intersections …
… The clouds were clearly visible. To prevent suspicion, the military … told city officials that ‘the tests involved efforts to measure ability to lay smoke screens about the city’ to ‘hide’ it in case of [Soviet] nuclear attack …” 5
There is only one universe in which clouds of germs sprayed from building rooftops or low-flying airplanes can be plausibly sold to city authorities as smokescreens to hide cities from Soviet attack: when those clouds of germs are very thick.
But how many unwitting and non-consenting US citizens were thus sprayed with bioweapons?
Operation Sea Spray alone “exposed 800,000 to harmful bacteria” writes CBS. Yet CBS is pulling its punches. For those 800,000 were just in San Francisco city and county. The population exposed was the Bay Area population because bacteria do not respect municipal boundaries (indeed, serratia infections were documented as far as Stanford just days after the release). The Bay Area population, in 1950, was more than 2.5 million.
One operation; 2.5 million affected. How many millions were sprayed in total? Who knows. But consider that
“Army spokesmen acknowledged that 239 populated areas from coast to coast had been blanketed with bacteria between 1949 and 1969. Tests involved covering areas of Alaska and Hawaii and the cities of San Francisco, Washington DC, Key West, and Panama City in Florida. Some tests were more focused, such as those in which bacteria were sprayed onto the Pennsylvania Turnpike or into the New York City subway system.”6 (my emphasis)
As you might expect, even after this was exposed by US senators, the US Army alleged ‘national security’ concerns to avoid releasing all the information about what it had done. Amazingly, the US Army dared to claim that it hadn’t measured the health effects on the people sprayed. Even more amazingly, this claim was accepted by the senators. In consequence, writes one expert, “we shall never know how much disease and death [the military] may have caused.”7
Knowing this history is of the greatest importance. As I argue elsewhere, we cannot hope to communicate across the gap that now divides us in the COVID controversies until many more people are made aware of this.
But why didn’t you hear about this before?
For one, as I explain in a separate piece, because these events are not included in standard histories of the United States, so we never learn about this in school. For another, because, other than a brief mention at the time in the Washington Post, which reads like a subtle apologia for the military, all we have in the media is a sprinkling of articles in minor publications and specialized science magazines that, like an otter’s nose, have poked the surface briefly and timidly in irregular bouts over the years.
Scarce and brief they may be, but these few reports do reveal to the happenstance reader a major catastrophe for US democracy. Read on.
Charles Senseney’s testimony to the Church Committee
The first inkling that the US government had conducted secret biowarfare attacks against its own population surfaced in 1975. This was during testimony to the United States Senate Select Committee to Study Governmental Operations with Respect to Intelligence Activities, better known as the ‘Church Committee,’ for its leader: Senator Frank Church. Especially interesting was the testimony of one Charles Senseney, retired Army scientist.
Business Insider explains that,
“In a 1995 Newsday story, reporter Dennis Duggan contacted retired Army scientist Charles Senseney, who had testified about the [open-air] experiments to a Senate subcommittee in 1975. In his testimony, [Senseney] explained that one light bulb full of bacteria dropped at 14th Street [in the New York subway] easily spread the bacteria up to at least 58th Street.
But he declined to reveal anything to the Newsday reporter. ‘I don’t want to get near this,’ Senseney said to Duggan. ‘I [testified], because I was told I had to by the people at the Department of Defense … I better get off the phone.’ ”8
Let’s talk numbers again. Today, average weekday subway ridership in New York City is about 5.5 million. It was lower then, but this operation—all by itself—might reasonably add another 2.5 million exposed. So we’re already talking perhaps 5 million affected, and we’ve considered only two of the 239 open-air ‘tests’ that the US Army confessed to.
What—in addition to conducting germ-warfare experiments in the New York subway—did the obviously frightened Senseney testify to in his 1975 Senate appearance? All of the following:
The CIA—disguised under an assumed name (‘Staff Support Group’)—was working at Fort Detrick within the US Army’s biowarfare program.
The CIA was very interested in various types of biowarfare hardware being developed by the US Army. This hardware included technologies to infect people at a distance, such as dart pistols and also dart throwers disguised as fountain pens, umbrellas, and walking sticks. (Yup. À la Bond, James Bond.)
Technology also existed to compress and harden a biological agent into a shirt button, so that a ‘tourist’ could walk into another country wearing it.
And technologies had also been developed to deposit aerosolized pathogens on highways and railways, and to infect water systems.
All of these technologies had been shared with the CIA, but the CIA shared no information with Senseney and his colleagues about how they employed these technologies.
When, in 1969, Nixon officially declared the biowarfare program extinct, the military was ordered to destroy the biological agents. Whether the military had destroyed any bioweapons Senseney could not say, but at least some had definitely not been destroyed because, instead, they had been sent to the CIA (these were now found and supposedly destroyed).
Without written orders, nor any guidance on how to do this, Senseney was told to destroy the hardware. And, he testified, he did destroy it. But he also said that the CIA had the blueprints for everything he destroyed. Those blueprints were not destroyed.
The senators kept pulling on this thread. And then additional revelations surfaced in hearings before the Senate Subcommittee on Health and Scientific Research of the Committee on Human Resources. It is here that a fuller accounting of the massive, open-air, biowarfare ‘tests’ emerged.
A mere decade after those Senate hearings, and basing himself on that evidence and much else, Dr. Leonard A. Cole, director of the Terror Medicine and Security Program at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School, wrote the most extensive and erudite accounting of this astonishing mass crime: Clouds of Secrecy: The Army’s Germ Warfare Tests over Populated Areas.9
Clouds of Secrecy
Cole’s narrative begins in World War II with the Japanese general and criminal doctor Shiro Ishii, whose unfortunate guinea pigs were defenseless prisoners of war (including, of course, US prisoners of war).
“... at least 3000 subjects were killed as a result of the [medical] experiments. Some died of disease, while others were executed after becoming physical wrecks unfit for further experimentation.”10
Instead of trying Ishii for war crimes and crimes against humanity, US authorities protected this monster and his team in exchange for obtaining all of the biowarfare research.11 Nobody knows exactly where Ishii spent the rest of his life after 1947. But the suggestion of some is not exactly outlandish that Ishii went to work at Fort Detrick, Maryland, where President Franklin Delano Roosevelt had established the United States Army Biological Warfare Laboratories.12
In any case, it does not appear that the US military’s scruples were more delicate than Ishii’s. Nor was the US Army kinder to its own soldiers than it was to civilians. The Washington Post explained that
“the Army secretary used military personnel and their families for open air experiments by spraying simulated germs into the air at a number of bases, including Fort Detrick, Md.; Fort Belvoir, Va.; and the Marine training school at Quantico, Va.”13
You should not be too reassured by the phrase “simulated germs.” This usually means a real germ that the military claimed was ‘harmless’ even though they were known already within mainstream medical science (standard textbooks) to cause infections.14
And the US Army sprayed more than just biological agents on its own soldiers. Writes Cole:
“During the 1960s, as other documents revealed, the army released various gases and hallucinogenic drugs in open air tests in Maryland and Utah. Thousands of soldiers were exposed. Shortly after reports about the tests were uncovered in 1979, the army announced that it would try to contact the victims to see if there were long-term effects. Nothing has been heard from the army about the matter since then.”15
An optimist here wants to say: Well, at least this was all exposed back in 1975-77. And after it was exposed, it had to stop. Right? It couldn’t still be going on. There are, however, zero grounds for such optimism.
First of all, nobody went to jail for this. Nobody even lost their job. And most of the US public is completely ignorant about it. If committing mass crimes has no negative consequences for the perpetrators, why would such crimes stop?
“Germ warfare testing is not merely a matter of history,” wrote Cole in 1988, as “the possibility of spraying the public again has been left open.”16 In fact, “An army spokesman testified in 1977 at congressional hearings that the army might resume testing when it finds an ‘area of vulnerability that takes additional tests.’ ” And by the early 1980s, in the administration of President Ronald Reagan, the military was already recommending internally that people be sprayed again.17
There was, however, a pebble in Reagan’s shoe: Alexander M. Capron, head of the President’s Commission for the Study of Ethical Problems in Medicine and Biomedical and Behavioral Research, a commission descended from another created after the government’s unethical experimentation on US citizens had been exposed in the seventies. Capron was saying that “under existing rules, the army could be spraying over heavily populated areas, and the public would not know.” Apparently Capron had not understood that he was there only for window dressing. After he let that comment slip, his Bioethics Commission, “the only federal commission concerned with ethical problems involving research on humans, was dissolved in 1983.”18
“In 1984 the army sought to expand its biological warfare testing facilities in Utah in a manner that seemed intended to draw minimal outside attention. In an apparent effort to avoid congressional hearings, it tried to ‘reprogram’ funds that had been designated for other purposes.”19
What was the point of that? Probably this:
“A 1986 army report reveals that open air testing is taking place again, at least on a limited basis. Since testing is conducted secretly, we do not know how many people may be exposed, or what plans exist for future testing.”20
Those plans for future testing must have been ambitious because in 1986 Reagan grew the budget for chemical and biological warfare, previously at $160 million, to $1 billion ($1,000 million).21 More than a six-fold increase!
(Side note: RFK Jr. seems to think that a host of chronic diseases and autoimmune disorders now afflicting US citizens, and the autism epidemic, etc., may possibly be the consequence of a proliferation of unsafe vaccines in the last few decades. There may be something to that. But it really seems like he should also take a look at this, no? They’ve been spraying millions of US citizens with experimental bioweapons.)
Should we buy the ‘national security’ argument?
For the historian, as for the average citizen, oftentimes the real benefit of a trial lies not so much in the outcome as in the evidence and explanations that must be presented for court record. Such was the suit brought by Edward J. Nevin III against the US government in 1981, alleging that the mass release of Serratia marcescens over San Francisco in 1950 had killed Edward’s grandfather.
The government presented its own experts to dispute the Nevin claim. Among them was Dr. John James Farmer of the CDC, who had earlier published, in 1977, a brief note in The Lancet claiming it was other variants of Serratia marcescens—and not the one sprayed by the US Army—that had been making people sick in San Francisco.
Some appear to believe that Farmer’s brief note cleared the military of guilt.22 Others disagree—notably, the Nevin family. Given that Farmer was a US government scientist trotted out to exonerate the government, his work should be scrutinized carefully. It appears that no one has. With all due respect for Farmer’s conclusions, the remarkable coincidence remains: “serratia infections were recorded at Stanford hospital for the first time ever only a few days after the army test” (my emphasis).23
It seems, from where I stand, that the Nevin family should have won their case. But according to Cole, the judge’s well-documented bias in favor of the military proved an insuperable obstacle for the family, despite Edward Nevin’s success exposing various significant problems with Farmer’s presentation.24
MOR subscribers help us do MOR. ;)
Yet the trial was a win for US citizens, as it “brought to light previously classified documents that had lain buried in the tombs of army archives.” And those responsible for the ‘tests’ were compelled in open court to try and justify, on the record, what they had done.
They didn’t apologize. They doubled down.
“Former military and scientific officials who had administered the testing program testified that they would be spraying today if still in charge. To gather data for national security, their testimony shows, was their overriding priority.”25
Careful. If you accept that claim it might fry your brain (in his famous novel, 1984, George Orwell called that ‘doublethink’).
Never forget: in democracies, people high-up in government who face the cameras always have to claim that they ‘defend the people.’ For claim anything else and you court revolution. So this is a forced grammatical move: of course they said this was “to gather data for national security.”
And they were gathering data. But was it “for national security”? In other words, to protect national security? No. You don’t protect US civilians and soldiers from biowarfare attacks by rushing to attack them first! That’s an Orwellian semantic inversion. And semantic inversions are a totalitarian tell.
WAR IS PEACE
FREEDOM IS SLAVERY
IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH
WE ATTACK YOU TO PROTECT YOU.
Two questions come to mind
One is: How could this happen in the United States?
The other is: Why didn’t you know about these biowarfare attacks on US citizens?
As has been documented in detail by historian Edwin Black, it was powerful Anglo-American billionaires who led and financed the eugenics movement in the first half of the 20th century. The eugenics movement—in part thanks to sponsorship from these powerful American eugenicists—then became German Nazism.
After WWII, these eugenicists remained powerful inside and outside of government in the US and Britain. Once this context is understood, it is less surprising that the US military, in the postwar, should have sprayed millions of its own civilians and soldiers with bioweapons.
It is also less surprising that you never heard about these attacks. The eugenicists are powerful enough to manage your reality.
Here follow two MOR pieces on these questions:
‘Army Conducted 239 Secret, Open-Air Germ Warfare Tests’; The Washington Post; 9 March 1977; by George C. Wilson.
‘Military Once Used SF Fog For Simulated Germ-Warfare Attack, Exposing 800,000 To Harmful Bacteria’; CBS San Francisco; July 10, 2015.
‘In 1950, the U.S. Released a Bioweapon in San Francisco: This was one of hundreds of bioweapon simulations carried out in the 1950s and 1960s’; Smithsonian Magazine; 6 July 2015; by Helen Thompson.
Luttmann K, Starnes VR, Haddad M, Duggan J. Serratia Marcescens, a Rare and Devastating Cause of Endocarditis: A Case Report and Review of the Literature. Cureus. 2022 Jun 1;14(6):e25572. doi: 10.7759/cureus.25572. PMID: 35784988; PMCID: PMC9249249.
‘Over and over again, the military has conducted dangerous biowarfare experiments on Americans’; Business Insider; 25 September 2016; by Kevin Loria
Cole, L. A. (1988). Clouds of Secrecy: The Army's Germ Warfare Tests Over Populated Areas. United Kingdom: Rowman & Littlefield. (p.viii)
Clouds of Secrecy (op. cit.) p.6
‘Over and over again…’ (op. cit.)
Cole, L. A. (1988). Clouds of Secrecy: The Army's Germ Warfare Tests Over Populated Areas. United Kingdom: Rowman & Littlefield.
Clouds of Secrecy (op. cit.) p.13
Clouds of Secrecy (op. cit.) p.13
Two sources that have suggested Ishii probably went to Fort Detrick as a biowarfare asset are the following:
‘ An ethical blank cheque’; The Guardian; 9 May 2005; by Richard Drayton.
‘Fort Detrick and COVID-19: Why do the Chinese want an investigation?’; China Global Television Network; by Gong Zhe
‘Army Conducted 239 Secret, Open-Air Germ Warfare Tests…’ (op. cit.)
For example, Cole observes that a “conventional reference,” a standard textbook from that time, “includes Bacillus subtilis”—much used in the secret ‘tests’—“in a group of bacteria that cause ‘infections in man’ … ” (Clouds of Secrecy, op. cit., p.48).
Clouds of Secrecy (op. cit.) pp.18-19
Clouds of Secrecy (op. cit.) pp.3-4
Clouds of Secrecy (op. cit.) pp.3-4
Clouds of Secrecy (op. cit.) p.4
Clouds of Secrecy (op. cit.) p.4
Clouds of Secrecy (op. cit.) pp.3-4
Clouds of Secrecy (op. cit.) pp.3-4
For example, the Farmer note is mentioned favorably by Mahlen SD. Serratia infections: from military experiments to current practice. Clin Microbiol Rev. 2011 Oct;24(4):755-91. doi: 10.1128/CMR.00017-11. PMID: 21976608; PMCID: PMC3194826.
After briefly describing what Farmer did, the authors state that Farmer et al “concluded that the strain used in testing was not an important cause of morbidity and mortality in the United States.” And they leave it at that. There is no mention of the arguments presented to dispute Farmer’s work and conclusions presented by the Nevin family in their suit against the US government.
Clouds of Secrecy (op. cit.) p.96
Clouds of Secrecy (op. cit.) pp.85-104
Clouds of Secrecy (op. cit.) pp.6-7