Wednesday, October 09, 2002


All of a sudden, Aflatoxin is in the ether. I don't remember where I heard it first, but after I saw Bill Bennett on Fox News mention it, I googled it. What I found is beyond frightening. Aflatoxin is in no way a military weapon. In fact, its use would not even be known for weeks or months. Its effects, when they become evident, seem to mostly include the development of Liver Cancer! And Iraq is the only country that seems to be the unique source for this stuff. Saddam is the only leader in history to have even conceived of using Aflatoxin, a weapon that, the joke goes, would be effective in halting the advance of infected Lieutanants from ever getting to Colonel, but could not slow down the advance or effectiveness of infantry..

I know that the link is from the Kurdish resistance in Iraq, but the same stuff was printed in the Atlantic and Slate. (many more links here. )I therefore assume that the facts are true. It is astonishing that this information is not more available. This was revealed in 1995, apparently, and today is the first I heard of it... and I read a LOT. (Actually, I heard the word Aflatoxin, but no explanation of what kind of stuff it is. And that is the very heart of this story.) The mere fact that Saddam has weaponized Aflatoxin, all by itself, if true, is reason enough to crush the regime.

The only reasonable argument against a military solution to the Saddam problem is that, in the realization of his imminent demise, Saddam will bring out the big guns, and kill more of us than he might otherwise. In response to that, allow me to paraphrase an old Hindu story. In the story, we have our hero, walking in the woods, next to a cliff. A tiger attacks him and gets our guy's face in his mouth, ready for the death stroke. The story is rendered in the form of our man telling the story to his friends. He tells how he extricated himself from the situation, by pushing the tiger off of the cliff. As he relates the story, he tells of how he slowly got his leg in position to push the tiger overboard. As he says it: "so then, slowly so as not to anger the tiger, I kicked my leg and the tiger went over the side.

The point is, when your adversary is trying to kill you, you don't have to worry about angering him. He is your most imminent enemy, with the will and the means to end your existence. There is no reason, tactically at least, to try to obfuscate from your adversary the fact that you are about to end his existence. He can't get any more angry at you, he's already about to crunch down on your vital area. His anger can not make him more dangerous. And once he is over the cliff, who cares?

Aflatoxin is so insidiously dangerous that we must put this tiger over the side. For all we know, the attack has already taken place, How would we know? This administration has proved many times over that they would not reveal the fact that we had been affected until the story was widely known already. They will not even admit that the Washington sniper shootings(N.Y. Times link; registration required), or the 13 Marine parachutes that were sabotaged, are terrorist acts. And a slow acting poison like Aflatoxin would not be obvious for months. We must act against this madman now!