Table Of Contents

  Advantages of Using ...
  Current Threats
Small Pox Threat
  Other Viruses...
  Terrorist Threat

Smallpox has been all but eradicated, but there still remain two known stores of the virus in laboratories in Atlanta and Moscow. Other countries may have gotten hold of the virus illegally, as well. This might sound like great news to completely wipe out a horrifying disease. However, because the virus has been eradicated, there are only a few million vaccinations readily available in the United States. Only about a tenth of the U.S. population has been vaccinated for small pox, and of those who have, few have been vaccinated recently enough for the antibodies to still be active. The virus could be quickly produced and used in time of war which could be disastrous to people who have never had the vaccination.

A country with a reasonably up-to-date pharmaceutical industry could quickly produce huge stores of the smallpox virus and use them in a biological attack. One in four people infected with the disease will die. Some nations, including the United States and Russia, still vaccinate their armed forces as a precaution.

Until the collapse of the Soviet Union, it was virtually certain the smallpox virus would continue to exist only in laboratories at the Center for Disease Control in Atlanta and at the Soviet Vector base in Siberia. However, with the guards at Vector working without pay for months, people could gain entry to the base relatively easily.

"Hybrid" viruses have also been created. Russian scientists have reportedly successfully merging the Ebola and smallpox viruses, using the small pox as a delivery system for the deadly Ebola virus. This would allow for Ebola's killer effect without its hindrance in requiring blood for transmission.

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