2,874. 10/5/2001

“Shortly after the death of the first anthrax victim [on October 5, 2001], the [Bush] administration ordered an intense, secret investigation to explore any possible link to Iraq, and continued to do so even after scientists determined that the form of anthrax sent through the mail was an American strain of the germ. Scientists scoured samples of the powder for signs of additives that would point to Iraq; they investigated whether Baghdad had somehow obtained samples of the so-called Ames strain of anthrax; they reviewed records from a United Nations investigation of Iraq’s biological arms program in the 1990s. ‘We looked for any shred of evidence that would bear on this,’ one senior intelligence official said in late 2001. ‘It’s just not there.’ ”

 – Todd S. Purdum and The New York Times Staff, A Time of Our Choosing, Page 30

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