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DOD Announce Anthrax Smallpox Jabs for Pacific Region Troops

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posted on Jun, 30 2004 @ 01:10 PM
The Assistant Secretary of Defense for Health Affairs has just announced that Service personnel, DOD Contractors and other individuals serving in the Pacific region are to be given Anthrax and Smallpox innoculations.


WASHINGTON -- The military will begin giving anthrax and smallpox vaccines to tens of thousands of troops in the Pacific region and Middle East to help protect them against biological warfare, the Pentagon announced Wednesday.

The expanded vaccination program is the result of an increased supply of the vaccines, particularly the anthrax vaccine, and not new intelligence on the threat of anthrax or smallpox weapons in those regions, said Dr. William Winkenwerder, Jr., assistant secretary of defense for health affairs.

The most significant group affected by the new orders will be troops who would face combat against North Korea. Any member of the military who is going to South Korea, or would go there early in a crisis, would receive both vaccines, officials said.

"Just knowing our personnel are protected can create a deterrent for our adversaries' use of these weapons," Winkenwerder said.

Some troops deployed to the Middle East region have received the vaccines. Now, everyone sent to the area managed by U.S. Central Command - which stretches from North Africa to Pakistan - will be required to take them, unless doctors determine they are at risk from the vaccines.

Defense Department contractors and civilian employees deemed essential will also be required to take the vaccines. Nonessential contractors and civilians have the option of taking them, as do family members of soldiers, contractors and civilian employees who live in the affected regions

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posted on Jul, 1 2004 @ 03:33 PM
The DOD has released a memo from Assistant Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz concerning the vaccination of troops in the Pacific Region against Anthrax and Smallpox.

The 5 part memo makes interesting reading as the first 4 parts refer specifically to service personnel/families/DODcontractors in Korea.

1. Vaccinate uniformed DoD personnel assigned in or designated as early deployees ( C-Day to C=20 ) to the Korean peninsula for 15 or more consecutive days, to include the US Command Forward Deployed Naval Forces, against smallpox and anthrax.

2. Implement USD ( Personnel & Readiness ) direction, to be issued following required consultation procedures, on vaccination of emergeny-essential and equivalent civilian employees assigned to Korea against smallpox and anthrax.

3. Vaccinate DoD contractor personnel carrying out mission essential services and assigned to Korea against smallpox and anthrax. Vaccination for the personell shall be a requirement of the applicable contract.

4. Offer anthrax and smallpox vaccinations to appropriate family members of DoD military personnel, other DoD civilian employees and their family members, and non-essential contractor personnel in Korea. Vaccination of these personnel is voluntary.

Read the full memo here,

It must be remembered that the DoD to not take the decision to vaccinate personnel against smallpox lightly. The huge numbers of personnel involved in this programme mean that inevitably some personnel will suffer illness from the smallpox vaccine. There may even be a very small number of fatalities.

The fact that the DoD is prepared to proceed with the vaccination programme, even in the face of the risks presented by smallpox vaccination, indicates the seriousness of the political situation in the Korean peninsula.

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posted on Jul, 4 2004 @ 10:19 AM
A South Korean Defense Ministry source has admitted that, unlike US military forces serving in Korea, South Korean military forces have not received anthrax/smallpox vaccinations.

Korean Military Defenseless Against Anthrax

The U.S. military authorities have recently decided to extend its vaccination programs against anthrax to include U.S. forces in the Pacific Commands including Korea. It has been revealed, however, that the Korean military has failed to secure anthrax vaccines at all, leaving itself in a defenseless state against anthrax attack. An official from the Defense Ministry said Sunday, “We have tried to purchase anthrax vaccines from the U.S. for the last two to three years, but to no avail. So, at present, we do not have any anthrax vaccines.”

Anthrax is caught through the respiratory organs and accompanies symptoms of high fever, cough, and mental disorder after the incubation period of 20 to 60 days. Eighty percent of those infected die within days. Right after the Sept.11 attack, anthrax terror attacks took place across the U.S., causing several deaths.

In particular, North Korea, as the world’s third most powerful nation with biological and chemical weapons, is known to have 13 kinds of biological weapons including anthrax, small pox, and pests. The South Korean military, however, only managed to secure some anthrax antibiotics and small pox vaccines. A military official said, “The government is trying hard to develop vaccines. We may be able to produce small pox vaccines by the end of this year, but as for anthrax vaccines, we are still in the process of development.” The U.S. Department of Defense announced on July 30 that in preparation for the North’s biological attack, it would make it mandatory for all U.S. soldiers in Korea and the Pacific Commands to be vaccinated against anthrax.

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