Wow. Our experiment is off to a great start—let's see if we can finish it off sooner than expected.
Shortly after the 2001 anthrax attacks, U.S. bioweapons researcher Bruce Ivins emailed some poems he'd written to a friend, including this one: "I'm a little dream-self, short and stout. I'm the other half of Bruce—when he lets me out. When I get all steamed up, I don't pout. I push Bruce aside, then I'm free to run about." The previous year, he'd confided to a friend that he was feeling deeply depressed and acknowledged that his psychiatrist believed he might be suffering from "Paranoid Personality Disorder." Combined with everything else we've learned about Ivins in the last week—his late nights at the Fort Detrick lab; his professional disappointments; his obsession with sorority girls; his threats against his counselor; his long history of sociopathic and psychotic behavior; his custody of an anthrax vial considered to be the "parent flask" of the material used in the attacks; and even his possession of what the FBI has declared to be a suspicious book, The Plague by Albert Camus (couldn't he just have been well-read?)—Ivins seems to fit the profile of someone capable, personally and professionally, of sending the anthrax letters.
The Justice Department and the FBI appear to be satisfied that he did, declaring at a press conference yesterday that Ivins was "the only person responsible" for the attacks. Even after it described its evidence against him, while ordering the simultaneous public release of 14 affidavits and search warrants, the Justice Department's case remained largely circumstantial—something US Attorney for the District of Columbia Jeffrey Taylor freely acknowledged. "Circumstantial evidence?" Sure, some of it is," he told reporters. "But it is compelling evidence."