Re: Quality & quantity of weapons (was: I was wrong...)

From: Samantha Atkins (
Date: Sun Nov 25 2001 - 16:28:15 MST

John Clark wrote:
> Mike Lorrey <> Wrote:
> >I think that it's just abominable that we've stopped vaccinating for
> >smallpox since 1980.
> I couldn't agree more. I hate to admit it but I wouldn't have said that 3 months ago.
> >Anthrax and other likely bioweapon diseases should also have vaccines widely
> >available in community civil defense kits. DNA sensor chip technologies are
> >also another way to go
> More agreement. Such measures are not flashy but would increase national security
> about a thousand times more that a star wars ICBM shield and at 2% of the cost.

As I understand it, there are some considerable problems with
this approach. First of all there are over 70 biological agents
that are considered reasonably effective for bio-weapons.
Vaccinations against the full spectrum would be quite a task and
not exactly health promoting. Most vaccines take a while to
build up an immunity and many produce some symptoms along the
way. The old smallpox vaccination would not be effective
against weapons-grade smallpox from what I have heard.

> >inexpensive devices that are constantly sniffing for various pathogens, built into
> >your wristwatch.
> Might work.

If we had MNT it would be a possibility. Of course then we
could destroy any pathogens as soon as they were found. I am
not sure how good current technology is at finding these
pathogens nor how cheaply it can be made. I assume we are some
ways away from this capability as the Post Office and such
claims early detection of Anthrax is quite difficult.

- samantha

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