Privately, scientists from the FSU are telling their counterparts in the U.S. that they 'lost control' of their Small Pox program in 1991. The real shocker was that it wasn't a small vial of the stuff tucked away in a secured freezer in Siberia. A Small Pox viral cluster about the size of a match head is all that is required to start an unchecked epidemic. The amount the Former Soviet Union had at the time of its demise was close to 20 tons. The intent was to weaponize it into warheads as Small Pox spreads through the air rather than by contact. Jane's reported a few months ago that Iraq, with 100% certainty has it stockpiled, as does North Korea. One of the magic numbers with respect to small pox is 12 days. That is the incubation time. On the 12th day after exposure, the victim's throat breaks out and they start experiencing flu like symptoms. As soon as a person's throat breaks out, they are contagious. At early onset of symptoms, the victim develops a very unique facial characteristic that can only be described as hyper concentration and the mind is extremely clear. 72 hours after onset of symptoms, pustules develop, with the greatest concentration on the face. The pustules are extremely hard and dry. 24 hours later, the excruciating pain begins as the pustules start to break open and the agony intensifies as this literally begins to remove the skin from the body. The mechanism by which small pox kills its victims isn't clearly known, but physicians believe it is most probably related to shock induced by the agony and the diminishment of the immune system. What is known is that 1 in 3 will die and of the survivors, roughly half will be horribly scarred and permanently debilitated to some degree from the disease. The other thing that cannot be known with any certainty is the multiplier or the number of people each infected person will in turn infect. Estimates are from 3 to 30. Let's assume a multiplier of 10 and merely 1000 people initially infected. In 36 days, there are 1,000,000 infected people. Simplistic? Yes, but I think suitable for example. The genetic structure of the small pox virus is easily manipulated and a strain for which the current vaccines would be useless would be fairly easy to create. Both North Korea and Iraq both have the technical ability to do this. This madman has also been buying large amounts of atropine from Turkey. Atropine is the drug of choice for treating persons exposed to Sarin. As insane as this man is, I cannot for a moment think that he believes it's going to be us using it on the Iraqis. The only question in my mind is why we haven't moved to remove these toys from his playpen sooner? Edit: I contructed the symptoms timetable from memory and I may have missed something...my memory isn't what it used to be.