Anthrax, the FBI & the Oswald Profile

By Douglas J. Hagmann, Director

1 August 2008: At 6:58 this morning, I received a telephone call at my office from a man I know well. He is someone who has performed numerous investigations involving the security of the United States. Information he has developed during the course of his many investigations has been acted upon by nearly every intelligence agency operating in the United States.

“I think it’s time,” he said, followed by a characteristic chuckle that I readily recognized as a signal of his impatience and disgust with a heavily politicized U.S. intelligence apparatus.

“I agree,” was my reply, sharing his disdain for the characteristic pabulum being peddled to the American people.

I was expecting his call, surprised only by the fact that he did not call hours sooner. I arrived in my office shortly after 4:00 this morning, anticipating his contact. Minutes later, I removed the file containing the investigative documents he sent me a few years ago, along with a second, more voluminous file containing additional corroborative documents we had exchanged over the last few years about the same subject. The combination of both files represented our collective investigative work product – our findings and analysis of the anthrax attacks of 2001, an event that today seems to be little more than a distant memory in the minds of most Americans.

To be clear, it is his documentation alone that addresses the question of who was responsible for mailing the anthrax letters of 2001. The documentation I offer is the result of my investigation and research, which serves more of a supportive role to his findings. When the two threads of discovery are combined, the result becomes like a completed three dimensional jigsaw puzzle, although there are a few pieces that are admittedly missing.

Those pieces could remain missing, forever buried under the broad cloak of national security, or sucked into a black-hole of intelligence secrecy. Nonetheless, the larger picture still exists.

“Can you believe this stuff?” he asked, referring to the news that the US Justice Department was about to file charges against a leading biodefense researcher. Dr. Bruce Ivins, 62, allegedly committed suicide just as authorities were about to files charges against him for the attack. The distinction of being a “person of interest” by the FBI was once held by Dr. Steven Hatfill, a former government scientist who was just awarded a settlement of over $5.5 million, thus exonerating him of being the anthrax attacker.

From an investigative standpoint, the monetary settlement paid to Dr. Steven Hatfill was the most public signal that FBI investigators were preparing to move against a suspect. It was clear that once the payout was made, authorities were closing in on a new person of interest. That, combined with recent statements by FBI Director Mueller and others suggested that “a breakthrough” was imminent.

That “breakthrough” came in the form of the news that the primary suspect in the anthrax attacks of 2001 is dead, allegedly by his own hand, allegedly by an overdose of Tylenol with codeine. Despite the perception of serenity that is invoked by the visions of an overdose of codeine, it is not the best way to go. The doctor should have known better.

How surprising - another dead microbiologist, which is (or should be) a story in itself. Among the mind-numbed public and the establishment media that is both heavily managed and ineffectual, the convenient death of another microbiologist, especially one who was reportedly the top suspect in the anthrax attacks, will generate few questions. It all fits into a tidy package that we, as Americans, like and have come to expect. And being dead puts you decidedly at a disadvantage when it comes to protecting yourself against allegations of killing people by anthrax and terrorizing a nation. Or like Lee Harvey Oswald, for killing an American president.

The truth is simple; the scope of the anthrax attacks required more than one lone attacker. It required a network of individuals with biological warfare capabilities. It involved a unique product – anthrax – that was the weapon of choice. Unique in the sense that it had certain “signatures” that allowed it to be traced back to a point of origin. Well now, that could get somewhat uncomfortable, depending on the spin, of course.

And what about the timing of the attacks relative to 9/11? A mere coincidence and unrelated to the events of 9/11? That depends, of course on the spin too. As for me, I don’t believe in coincidences, at least not in situations of this magnitude.

Before the public embraces the “Oswald Profile” of events regarding the anthrax attacks of 2001, we will lay out our findings.

And it won’t be comfortable or tidy.