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Former featured article candidate Bioterrorism is a former featured article candidate. Please view the links under Article milestones below to see why the nomination failed. For older candidates, please check the archive.
January 29, 2005 Featured article candidate Not promoted
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What category would Baylisascaris fall under? Nathanlarson32767 06:37, 17 Dec 2004 (UTC)

Allegation needs to be substantiated[edit]

The allegation that the US Army deliberately distributed smallpox-infected blankets among Native Americans is not upheld by a consensus of historians. What sources can you cite to support such an assertion? Ward Churchill made such accusations in Indians Are Us? and A Little Matter of Genocide, but he has been sharply contested by other historians, including those he quoted for "evidence":

If there are other, more reliable inquiries to substantiate the allegations of deliberate contamination via the US Army, please include them; otherwise, this possible misinformation should be edited out. (Note that I am in no way contesting the well-documented suggestion, if not implementation, of the British general Lord Amherst's plan to distribute smallpox-infected blankets among Native Americans in 1763.)

I've deleted the sentence in question. It is not approprirate ... though it happens ALL the time ... to toss around speculation as fact, particularly without any reference material to back it up. The reason why I passed through here is that I'm generally tightening up information surrounding the smallpox article, and this article is appropriately in the "what links here" cloud. Courtland 03:33, 2005 Mar 1 (UTC)

There is no evidence the US Army did any such thing. However, the Army did conduct an experiment in New York City, where an Army investigator dropped light bulbs filled with an inert powder from the rear of a subway train in order to evaluate how quickly an aerosolized bio agent would infect people and how many would be infected. I have a textbook somewhere which details this event, but until I can retrieve it so I can provide a specific citation, I'm not going to include that in the article. 17:16, 8 June 2007 (UTC)Raryel

Ditto applies to the mythical Iraqi bioweapons. Evidence? Sources? If none, and just PSYOPS, then that part of the text ought to be deleted... —Preceding unsigned comment added by UsulHiir (talkcontribs) 00:47, 23 May 2009 (UTC)


As I do my "Skip the "Plague (disambiguation)" (You can help)" work, I came to this page. The use of Plague here seems to point close to Bubonic plague, which is what I changed the link to, but that article mentions only one bacteria and here it implies there are several. I suspect both might be correct in the context, but I don't know how to make it clear here. John (Jwy) 23:02, 4 January 2006 (UTC)

Merge with biological warfare?[edit]

  • The merge template has been here for almost a year. I don't see any reason to merge this with biological warfare. Terrorism, by definition, is something specifically aimed at civilians, while warfare isn't always (usually not?) aimed at civilians but rather involves military forces. These are definitely distinct topics, in my opinion. Anyone agree or disagree? If there's agreement, then let's remove the merge template. -Aude (talk | contribs) 19:22, 11 January 2006 (UTC)
  • Yeah, I think terrorism is performed by groups not recognised as governments whilst war is waged between groups recognised as governments. Although the techniques used may be similar in some cases. --Username132 21:41, 5 February 2006 (UTC)
  • Agreed too; I'll remove the merge template, a unanimous vote gathered over a year is valid even if it's just two votes - MPF 22:41, 5 February 2006 (UTC)
  • Agreed. You shouldn't merge with biological warfare, as there is a delination between terrorism vs. warfare (involving the rules of engagement and whether attacking citizens is "open" or not)... ergo, there is a delination between bioterrorism vs. biowarfare.—Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)
  • dissagered the paper already contains bio warfare why not make it more complete —Preceding [[ comment added by zvan (talk) 00:04, 9 January 2008 (UTC) the world —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:40, 17 October 2008 (UTC)

Please note the date stamp on these sections, these proposals were made two years ago. I've set up an achiever. ChyranandChloe (talk) 04:08, 17 October 2008 (UTC)
  • Either Or - EITHER merge with biological warfare OR remove anything that is not terror but warfare. Personally, I feel that Bioterrorism should be a subsection on the Bio Warfare page (as it is so insignificant, one successful and a handfull unsuccessful attemps) - Aves Paladin (talk) 09:18, 23 June 2009 (UTC)

External links cleaup[edit]

Above is the old External links, some links have been removed, some can be used as references. ChyranandChloe (talk) 05:33, 23 May 2009 (UTC)

Remove Ricin[edit]

I suggest to remove the Ricin paragraph as it is an act of poisoning and not Bioterrorism. - Aves Paladin (talk) 09:19, 23 June 2009 (UTC)

Ricin incidents 
In September 1978, the Bulgarian dissident Georgi Markov was assassinated in London by means of a ricin-filled poison dart fired from an umbrella[1]. This was the first of a long series of ricin events which would slowly unroll over the next thirty years. Bioterrorism remained quiescent for twenty-two years until March 2000, when following his suicide, police discovered ricin, a blowgun, and darts in the Irvine, California home of Dr. Larry C. Ford. A total of 266 bottles and vials of pathogens were found in refrigerators at his home and office.[1][2] A cluster of ricin-related events occurred in 2003. In January that year, Scotland Yard arrested seven Algerian terror suspects after traces of ricin were discovered in their homes. Then in March, French police found small bottles containing traces of ricin in a Paris train station. During October, ricin was discovered in an envelope at a post office in Greenville, South Carolina. A month later in November, the Secret Service intercepted a letter addressed to the White House which contained a vial of ricin and a letter. The letter was a complaint about trucking regulations, and was very similar to the ricin letter discovered a month earlier in South Carolina. Ricin was found again in Washington, DC, this time in the Dirksen Senate Office building mailroom in February 2004. Ricin activity remained quiet until January 2005, when an Ocala, Florida man was arrested after FBI agents found ricin in his home. Most recently in February 2008, a man living in a Las Vegas motel was taken to a hospital in critical condition. A number of firearms and an anarchist manual were found in his motel room along with several vials of ricin.

Understood, copied and pasted the text into the discussion so that it can be moved into relevant articles. Thanks. ChyranandChloe (talk) 04:24, 24 June 2009 (UTC)

Remove Sarin Attack[edit]

Sarin is a Chemical Agent and therefore belongs to Chemical Terror and not Bioterror. - Aves Paladin (talk) 09:22, 23 June 2009 (UTC)

Aum Shinrikyo 
In 1995 a small terrorist group, then called Aum Shinrikyo but today called Aleph, launched a Sarin gas attack on the Tokyo subway system. The attack killed twelve and affected more than 5000. The response of Japanese emergency services successfully prevented an outcome with much higher mortality rates.[3] This was not the group's first such attack; on March 27, 1994, Aum Shinrikyo targeted a neighborhood in Matsumoto, Japan to try to kill the judges presiding over a lawsuit involving a real-estate dispute. There were seven fatalities.

Understood, copied and pasted the text into the discussion so that it can be moved into relevant articles. Thanks. ChyranandChloe (talk) 04:24, 24 June 2009 (UTC)

Mustard Gas[edit]

"Instead, the use of poisonous mustard gas became the biological weapon of choice.[6][dubious – discuss] "

This is a chemical weapon, and not a biological one. Right? (talk) 13:26, 20 March 2010 (UTC)

Biological agents easy to obtain?[edit]

From the defenition section:"Bioterrorism is an attractive weapon because biological agents are relatively easy and inexpensive to obtain"

I'm no expert on these things but is it really easy to obtain biological agents compared to other weapons?, chicken pox and the flu are probably easy to obtain but to my understanding few people have access to agents such as small pox and anthrax that would be useful as weapons. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:20, 5 August 2013 (UTC)

Harmful biological organisms are very easy to obtain, you can even order some of them on the Internet without identification or any certifications, nothing, not even paperwork to be filed anywhere. You can get Class 1 organisms pretty much anywhere you can think of however if you want Class 2 through 4 (the retrovirus genre) you must have stocks of strains on hand or purchase them from corporate labs or governmental labs which are either usually highly restricted or criminal.
If people want Bubonic or other common factors or vectors, they collect dead rodents and fowl, extract the fleas from animal carcasses which have tested positive for various anti-bodies. National Forests in the United States have Bubonic in the rodent populace and carcasses found at campgrounds test positive every year and amusingly make the news.
But to weaponize such materials requires expensive technology to freeze dry, crystallize, turn in to a powder of a particular granularity. Dispersal may require a binary agent, a liquid that gets mixed with the died organism. Point being, the ease of which to obtain common organisms which can kill someone is pretty much very ease. But to kill lots of people, to start an epidemic is difficult. BiologistBabe (talk) 14:43, 6 August 2013 (UTC)

The sentence also continues "can be easily disseminated" but my point is that to say it is an "attractive weapon" is kind of misleading considering how expensive it would be to manufacture compared to other weapons like regular bombs. Also considering how few cases of bioterrorism there has been it doesn't seem to be a popular weapon among terrorists. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:21, 7 August 2013 (UTC)

Rajneeshee bioterror attack[edit]

Why was the section on Rajneeshee bioterror attack removed? I see that someone put it back, I'm curious why the person who removed it did so. BiologistBabe (talk) 17:09, 29 August 2013 (UTC)


The following articles may be useful:

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  1. ^ a b Georgi Markov, VideoFact, 2001, retrieved 2009-05-22 
  2. ^ Ricin dart fired by umbrella killed Bulgarian envoy, CNN, 2008-02-29, retrieved 2009-05-22 
  3. ^ Olson, Kyle B. Aum Shinrikyo: Once and Future Threat? CDC Emerging Diseases, Vol.5 No.4