Experts Warn, Terrorists could weaponize highly infectious diseases and use Planes to Spread

Earlier this month, during a two day period, four different international flights were stopped and quarantined after passengers reported flu-like symptoms. The stories have received very little attention from the mainstream media, but some experts are starting to quietly ask if these flights may have been connected and possibly part of a dry run by terrorists.

According to NBC Philadelphia, all of these planes had one thing in common; they were all returning from the terror capital of the world, Mecca! The Department of Homeland Security also confirmed to the Washington Examiner, that these passengers all originated from Mecca, Saudi Arabia.

All of this comes as the Trump administration published its new bio-defense policy to protect against biochemical weapons as well as outbreaks of infectious disease after experts warned the U.S. was vulnerable to large-scale biological attacks. The new policy puts all aspects of US bio-defense under one group for the first time and establishes a Cabinet-level committee to coordinate and centralize the response.

“Biological threats emanate from many sources, and they know no borders,” said US president Donald Trump in a written statement. “They have great potential to disrupt the economy, exact a toll on human life, and tear at the very fabric of society.”

For some time, disease experts have been warning that the U.S. is ill-prepared for a terrorist attack with biological weapons, pandemics, or the rise of so-called unpredictable Disease X: the unknown pathogen identified by the World Health Organization as having the potential to spark a worldwide pandemic.

During the 2015 Ebola outbreak, we saw first hand how ill-prepared our country’s emergency response agencies are to respond to a serious disease outbreak.

From the federal government refusing to take the necessary steps to protect the public, to the CDC allowing infected people to fly right into the country completely unchecked, the federal government failed at every level. Luckily, that Ebola outbreak didn’t turn into a global killer and the virus eventually burned itself out; had the virus gone airborne, this country would have fallen apart.

Spreading Disease Via Commercial Air Travel

Amerincan Airlines

Professor Wyn Rees, a security expert at the University of Nottingham, told Daily Star Online that spreading diseases via commercial planes was the “Holy Grail” of terror.

“There are always lots of warnings with these kinds of things, be it bird flu or Ebola or monkeypox.

“Because the fear is based on the fact they can cross borders very quickly.

“I have no doubt public health officials are discussing the implications of these threats in Europe. Of course, everything will be top secret.

“It would be incredibly difficult to detect these diseases within a passenger on a plane when they are sitting dormant.”

World Health Organization: Risk of Ebola’s spread from Congo now ‘very high.’

Ebola Outbreak

According to the World Health Organization deputy director-general of emergency preparedness and response, Peter Salama, there is a “perfect storm” brewing in Africa that could lead to another Ebola epidemic.

An outbreak of the hemorrhagic fever in northeastern Congo has now moved near the Uganda border, causing the WHO to raise their official alert level. Inside Congo, the response to the outbreak has been hampered by fighting by local militias and by victims leaving or refusing to go to treatment centers, spreading the virus to new areas.

In the coming weeks, problems like those could “create a potential perfect storm,” Dr. Salama said. “We’ve seen an increased frequency and increased the severity of attacks by armed opposition groups in recent weeks,” said Salama. “Our operations are in effect suspended.”

As of Friday, there have been 157 cases in his latest Ebola outbreak. The outbreak has killed 102 patients, and 45 patients have been released.

U.S. Hospitals not Prepared to contain a Pandemic Outbreak

According to the CDC’s own numbers, approximately 1.7 million healthcare-associated infections occur in U.S. hospitals every year, resulting in somewhere around 99,000 deaths annually.

If U.S. hospitals can’t stop known pathogens like Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), Clostridium difficile (C. diff), and Vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus (VRE), can we really expect them to be able to contain a pandemic outbreak?

For more information on Disease and Pandemic preparedness, check out these articles: 

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