When we are talking about vulnerability to mass terrorism, biological warfare is at the top of the list.
There are no operational defenses. The public does not know this.
The military branches take no responsibility to defend the homeland from this. The senior officers don’t think it’s worth any money from their budgets. “Let another branch pay for this.”
So, Congress started a civilian alert system a decade ago. It is barely more than a preliminary blueprint. The trouble is, there is a huge cost overrun associated with the program. The estimate is now pushing $6 billion. Congress may not appropriate the funds.
Will the system work? Could it work in time to get a million people out of any of the 30 cities? How about 8 million people. Of course not.
Would senior officials in any city announce the threat in time to get 80% of the people out before the anthrax killed them? Obviously not. There is no way to get them out. The highways out would clog up.
So, would any official risk his career by announcing the threat? Or would he call his wife and tell her to get out . . . and keep silent about why? Probably.
The USA projects its power all over the world. Yet, when it comes to the nation’s #1 military threat, there is no defense.
The same is true of a nuclear attack. There has never been a defense except for Mutually Assured Destruction: each side holding the other side’s civilian population captive to a counter strike.
Only because Lt. Col. Stanislav Petrov disobeyed an order to start World War III in 1983 did we avoid it.
Biological warfare is suitable to non-state terrorist groups. It is cheap. It is effective. It is potentially devastating. It could bring down any nation’s banking system. It could shut down cities. It would break the economy. It would produce terror on a scale never before seen.
The Defense Department is supposed to defend the country, not police the world. Until the Pentagon’s budget reflects the priority of defense against non-state biological warfare, there is no Defense Department. There is only the War Department.
First things first.