2,870. 10/5/2001

"Shortly after the first anthrax victim died in October [5, 2001], the Bush administration began an intense effort to explore any possible link between Iraq and the attacks and continued to do so even after scientists determined that the lethal germ was an American strain, scientists and government officials said. But they said that largely secret work had found no evidence to back up the initial suspicions, which is one reason administration officials have said recently that the source of the anthrax was most likely domestic. For months, intelligence agencies searched for Iraqi fingerprints and scientists investigated whether Baghdad had somehow obtained the so-called Ames strain of anthrax. Scientists also repeatedly analyzed the powder from the anthrax-laced envelopes for signs of chemical additives that would point to Iraq. 'We looked for any shred of evidence that would bear on this, or any foreign source,' a senior intelligence official said of an Iraq connection. 'It's just not there.' "

 – William J. Broad and David Johnston, “U.S. Inquiry Tried, but Failed, To Link Iraq to Anthrax Attack,” The New York Times, Dec. 22, 2001,

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