Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Biological Warfare

I really like watching The West Wing.  Sometimes things in real life remind me of episodes that I have seen before.  For instance, the lecture in my microbiology class last week reminded me of an episode from season one. In this episode, Josh Lyman hears that some countries have illegally saved some cultures of the smallpox virus that could be used in biological warfare.  All the terrorists would need to do is have a "little test tube with a disintegrating rubber cap that they drop in Grand Central Station."  Then everyone in the vicinity becomes a carrier. It's nasty stuff.

Well, in my microbiology class we were talking about biological weapons and they are a real threat.  The Federation of American Scientists realizes the threat, too.  My professor pulled up their website in class and gave us a link to an interesting page on their site.  The link is here.  It shows about 20 different viruses that would be potentially dangerous weapons that could be used by terrorists.  The site tells you what they do to you, how they travel, and what treatment, if any, is available.  Some of the viruses they included are the Ebola virus, smallpox, anthrax, and the plague.

It seems so primitive, vulgar, and disgusting to use a virus in war, mainly because you are transforming innocent civilians into weapons of mass destruction.

I guess all war could be seen as primitive, vulgar, and disgusting, though.  Except for those remote control airplanes that the Air Force uses now.  They can control these huge airplanes in halfway around the world from the Air Force base in Nevada.  If we just fought these airplanes against each other, that would be a pretty clean war.  A waste of money, sure, but no one would die.  It would be just a very expensive episode of Battle Bots.  That show was awesome.

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