Army tested 'germ warfare' on NYC subway (2015)

hypatiasrevenge | 166 points


This is such a clickbait. Everybody reading that title imagines that they tested spreading of some contagious disease (and put it in the same category as the Tuskegee Syphilis Study - - but what was tested was how the bacteria was moved by the air in the subway. They tried a common soil bacteria that they believed was harmless (and which wikipedia says "is thought to be a normal gut commensal in humans").

"""And while the people who conducted these experiments did so under the belief that the bacterial species they used were harmless, it has since been revealed that they can cause health problems."""

This is such a weasel language, everything can cause health problems (is water harmless?

The bacteria used there was: "This species is commonly found in the upper layers of the soil and B. subtilis is thought to be a normal gut commensal in humans."

We live surrounded by bacteria, an probably often by Bacillus subtilis - because it is a common bacteria found in soil.

zby | a year ago

Horrific, yet sadly not the only time the US government has used bio weapons on their own population.

The most well known examples are MKUltra:

And the Tuskegee Syphilis Study:

If you want to look at something slightly more speculative, I recommend Dr. Mary's Monkey:

It talks about how the CIA worked with Dr. Mary Sherman and Dr. Alton Ochsner to develop a cancer causing bio-weapon intended to give Castro cancer, but ultimately became part of the plot to assassinate JFK when that fell through.

bluefishinit | a year ago

They did something like this again in 2021, and wouldn't even disclose what the tracer substance was. ("Non-Toxic Gas to Be Deployed in 100+ NYC Locations, Including Transit, In Bio-Attack Readiness Test") (5 comments)

perihelions | a year ago

Great article. Just like the ones before it.

I’m waiting for the articles where people are convicted of crimes…

I won’t hold my breath, for justice anyway, just for protection from my government experimenting on me without consent while policing themselves and accountable to nobody.

ransackdev | a year ago

Well, they couldn't exactly run realistic and viable computer models in the years of 1949-1969... so they took a harmless, commonly used model organism, and conducted tests.

Something science teachers do as a simple experiment now (with various substances), something Mark Rober even did on his own channel with 'Glo Germ' powder

ryanmercer | a year ago

My all time favorite is still when we tested chemo-like AIDs drugs on foster kids without guardians. Side-effects to include:

    "rashes, vomiting and sharp drops in infection-fighting blood cells as they tested antiretroviral drugs to suppress AIDS or other medicines to treat secondary infections."
pookha | a year ago

I'm surprised no one has mentioned Operation Sea-Spray:

Operation Sea-Spray was a 1950 U.S. Navy secret biological warfare experiment in which Serratia marcescens and Bacillus globigii bacteria were sprayed over the San Francisco Bay Area in California, in order to determine how vulnerable a city like San Francisco may be to a bioweapon attack

People got sick and one person died, all from bacteria they thought to be harmless at the time.

booleandilemma | a year ago

"This test was one of at least 239 experiments conducted by the military in a 20-year "germ warfare testing program" that went on from 1949 to 1969. These experiments that used bacteria to simulate biological weapons were conducted on civilians without their knowledge or consent."

hypatiasrevenge | a year ago

I’ve recently been reading about MKUltra, and I wonder if the 60s was a crazy time or if the more recent “bad projects” are simply not yet declassified.

sesuximo | a year ago

There has been a serious uptick in posts about US germ warfare from really weird sources like Medium and insider. Are the Russians planning some sort of biological attack and trying to create fertile environment?

moose_man | a year ago

The deaths and the life altering consequences of unknown diseases on countless people appear to be the result of undisclosed secret experiments by their own government.

No accountability, no payments to surviving family members nor those directly affected. Just "toys" to be played with and discarded at will. When people seek justice, just lots of gaslighting and bureaucracy in return.

Tozen | a year ago


r721 | a year ago

I'm inclined to believe it, but is there better documentation than the 'insider' family of websites?

boppo1 | a year ago


troad | a year ago


dewaynekempsr | a year ago


ChatGTP | a year ago