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Germs

Germs

Biological Weapons and America's Secret War

Read by: Murphy Guyer
Deadly germs sprayed in shopping malls, bomb-lets spewing anthrax spores over battlefields, tiny vials of plague scattered in Times Square -- these are the poor man's hydrogen bombs, hideous weapons of mass destruction that can be made in a simple laboratory.
In this groundbreaking work of investigative journalism, Judith Miller, Stephen Engelberg, and William Broad of The New York Times uncover the truth about biological weapons and show why bio-warfare and bio-terrorism are fast becoming our worst national nightmare.
Among the startling revelations in Germs:
  • How the CIA secretly built and tested a model of a Soviet-designed germ bomb, alarming some officials who felt the work pushed to the limits of what is permitted by the global treaty banning germ arms.
  • How the Pentagon embarked on a secret effort to make a superbug.
  • Details about the Soviet Union's massive hidden program to produce biological weapons, including new charges that germs were tested on humans.
  • How Moscow's scientists made an untraceable germ that instructs the body to destroy itself.
  • The Pentagon's chaotic efforts to improvise defenses against Iraq's biological weapons during the 1991 Persian Gulf War.
  • How a religious cult in Oregon in the 1980s sickened hundreds of Americans in a bio-terrorism attack that the government played down to avoid panic and copycat strikes.
  • Plans by the U.S. military in the 1960s to attack Cuba with germ weapons.

Germs also shows how a small group of scientists and senior officials persuaded President Bill Clinton to launch a controversial multibillion-dollar program to detect a germ attack on U.S. soil and to aid its victims -- a program that, so far, is struggling to provide real protection.
Based on hundreds of interviews with scientists and senior officials, including President Clinton, as well as on recently declassified documents and on-site reporting from the former Soviet Union's sinister bio-weapons labs, Germs shows us bio-warriors past and present at work at their trade. There is the American scientist who devoted his professional life to perfecting biological weapons, and the Nobel laureate who helped pioneer the new biology of genetically modified germs and is now trying to stop its misuse. We meet former Soviet scientists who made enough plague, smallpox, and anthrax to kill everyone on Earth and whose expertise is now in great demand by terrorists, rogue states, and legitimate research labs alike.
A frightening and unforgettable narrative of cutting-edge science and spycraft, Germs shows us why advances in biology and the spread of germ weapons expertise to such countries as Iran, Iraq, and North Korea could make germs the weapon of the twenty-first century.
Choose a format:
  • Simon & Schuster Audio | 
  • ISBN 9780743547567 | 
  • November 2001
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About the Authors

Judith Miller

Judith Miller is an author and a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporter formerly with The New York Times. She was part of a small team that won a Pulitzer Prize for “explanatory journalism” for her January 2001 series on Osama bin Laden and Al Qaeda. She won an Emmy for her work on a Nova/New York Times documentary based on articles for her book Germs. Miller is the author of four books, two of which were #1 bestsellers. In 2005 she received the Society of Professional Journalists’ First Amendment Award for her protection of sources. She is an adjunct fellow at the Manhattan Institute and a contributing editor of its magazine, “City Journal.” Since 2008, she has been a commentator for Fox News.

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William J Broad
Della Bass

William J Broad

William J. Broad has practiced yoga since 1970. A bestselling author and senior writer at The New York Times, he has won every major award in print and television during more than thirty years as a science journalist. With New York Times colleagues, he has twice won the Pulitzer Prize, as well as an Emmy Award and a DuPont. He is the author or coauthor of seven books, including Germs: Biological Weapons and America’s Secret War, a #1 New York Times bestseller.

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