Hello! You are part of a community of millions who seek out Democracy Now! each month for ad-free daily news you can trust. Maybe you come for our daily headlines. Maybe you come for our in-depth stories that expose corporate and government abuses of power and lift up the voices of ordinary people working to make change in extraordinary times. We produce all of this news at a fraction of the budget of a commercial news operation. We do this without ads, government funding or corporate sponsorship. How? This model of news depends on support from viewers and listeners like you. Today, less than 1% of our visitors support Democracy Now! with a donation each year. If even 3% of our website visitors donated just $10 per month, we could cover our basic operating expenses for a year. Pretty amazing right? If you visit us daily or weekly or even just once a month, now is a great time to make a monthly contribution.

Your Donation: $
Thursday, October 4, 2001 FULL SHOW | HEADLINES | NEXT: Congress Nears Dramatic Expansion of Police and...
2001-10-04

As General Accounting Office Warns We Aren’t Prepared for a Bioterror Attack, Centers Fordisease Control in Atlanta Are Placed Under Gag Order

DONATE →
This is viewer supported news

Laurie Garrett writes in Newsday:

"With public anxiety about bioterrorism on the rise, gas mask sales soaring and talk shows rife with alarming claims,the head of the federal department of Health and Human Services, Tommy Thompson, said America is prepared to dealwith any kind of biological attack."

“But public health experts throughout the nation say [his] comments, made on the CBS show "60 Minutes", don’t reflecta 2-week long gag order that’s kept them from getting specific information about preparedness from such agencies asthe Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, leading to confusion and concern."Though there’s no specific evidence that any bioterrorism agents have been, or will be, used in the New York region,officials prepared for the worst-case scenario yesterday, reviewing security and, in some cases, tightening it.

The General Accounting Office warns that the federal capacity to respond to a bioterrorism attack is fragmented andunder funded. The GAO report describes a government that lacks a clear line of authority over the planning process.At least seven executive branch departments have bioterrorism programs, and an estimated $156 million was spent onbioterrorism programs in 2001. But the report said that the fragmentation among these programs is so extensive thatno two departments even share a common list of the pathogens most likely to be used as biological weapons.

Guest:

  • Laurie Garrett, Newsday reporter and author of "Betrayal of Trust: The Collapse of Global PublicHealth."

Recent Shows More

Full News Hour

Stories


Creative Commons License The original content of this program is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. Please attribute legal copies of this work to democracynow.org. Some of the work(s) that this program incorporates, however, may be separately licensed. For further information or additional permissions, contact us.