Modal close

Hi there,

You turn to Democracy Now! for ad-free news you can trust. Maybe you come for our daily headlines. Maybe you come for in-depth stories that expose government and corporate abuses of power. This week Democracy Now! is celebrating our 23rd birthday. For over two decades, we've produced our daily news hour without ads, government funding or corporate underwriting. How is this possible? Only with your support. Right now, in honor of Democracy Now!'s birthday, every donation we receive will be doubled by a generous supporter. This means if you give $30 today, Democracy Now! will get $60 to support our daily news hour. Please do your part. It takes just a couple of minutes to make sure that Democracy Now! is there for you and everybody else. Thank you! -Amy Goodman

Non-commercial news needs your support.

We rely on contributions from you, our viewers and listeners to do our work. If you visit us daily or weekly or even just once a month, now is a great time to make your monthly contribution.

Please do your part today.

Donate

America’s Secret Sites: Plum Island Animal Disease Experimentation Center

Default content image
Listen
Media Options
Listen

Defense Secretary William Cohen assigned a former CIA operative, Brigadier General Bruce M. Lawlor to head the coordination of the military’s response to a biological or nuclear attack by terrorists. Lawlor will command the Joint Task Force for Civil Support, and his responsibility will be to direct the armed services in support of federal agencies in the event of a major terrorist attack on U.S. soil. Lawlor worked for the C.I.A. during the Vietnam War.

Last year, President Clinton announced his plans to expand the military’s role to include domestic responsibilities in the fight against domestic terrorism–including biological and chemical warfare.

Plum Island, a small area just off the coast of Long Island in New York, is one of the sites that the US military used in the 1940’s and 50’s for experimentation on germ warfare. Now officially classified as an animal disease experimentation center and run by the US Department of Agriculture, it tests animal viruses and illnesses such as anthrax and hoof in mouth disease.

Over the years, the center has been cited for violating federal environmental laws and faces a lawsuit by the New York State Attorney General. Now, environmental activists in the area are concerned that the top-secret center will once again be used as a testing site for biological warfare.

Guests:

  • John McDonald, Former reporter with New York’s Newsday who reported on Plum Island, and discovered military documents that showed that the US military conducted germ warfare experiments on Plum Island in the 1940’s and 50’s. He is now a reporter with the Orange County Register in California.
  • Dr. Leonard Cole, Author of the Eleventh Plague: The Politics of Biological and Chemical Warfare. Speaking from Baltimore.
  • Bill Smith, Executive Director of “Fish Unlimited,” an international organization representing fishing communities. Speaking from Shelter Island, just a few miles from Plum Island.

Related Story

Video squareStoryMay 20, 2015Sgt. James Brown, 26, Survived Two Tours in Iraq Only to Die Begging for His Life in Texas Jail
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.

Non-commercial news needs your support

We rely on contributions from our viewers and listeners to do our work.
Please do your part today.
Make a donation
Up arrowTop