An Insect Bioterror Strike? Sounds Overblown

By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 5, 2009 8:49 PM CST
An Insect Bioterror Strike? Sounds Overblown
Jonathan Miller, sweet grocery buyer and bee hive designer, checks the bees on the roof at Fortnum and Mason on July 22, 2008 in London.   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – Sure, bug swarms can spread nasty things, but using them to unleash bioterror isn't as easy as they say, Robert Roy Britt writes in LiveScience. One expert said in the Telegraph today that dispersing insects as weapons is "relatively easy"—but consider that terrorists would have to team up with scientists in a proper lab, sneak bugs by airport scanners, and disperse them before they die.

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"Like other threats, this is one that governments should (and no doubt do) consider," writes Britt. The US Military has been guarding against bioterror strikes on crops for years, and armies as diverse as Japan in World War II and the Union in the Civil War have used bugs to kill people and crops. But while the story of insect terror is old, the notion that modern terrorists can pull it off "is thin on details and long on speculation," Britt writes. (Read more terrorist stories.)

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