Way back when I was a student at Command and Staff School, the class was treated to an all day session by a group of white-coated biology professors who told us all about the limitations and capabilities of “biological warfare.” This session was very secret – evidently to the point where no one learned anything from it.
The professors in this case informed us that if biological weapons were to be used, no existing affliction would be involved – not anthrax or bubonic plague or typhus or anything else that anyone had seen before. The agent used would be a synthetic disease created in a laboratory and given a code name, such as “Q27.” All members of the attacking population could be immunized against it, but the defenders would have no way of combating it since they would not know what it was.
The professors further pointed out that the symptoms of the disease could be manufactured to order and need not be permanently serious. The affliction would have to last only long enough to allow ground victory by the attacking force. These professors pointed out to the class how humane that was. Well, maybe, but anybody who chooses to use anthrax as a weapon does not understand biological warfare.
From Jeff Cooper’s Commentaries
Vol. 6, No. 3
[Considering that Cooper is in his 80’s and hence this class must have been at least 50 years ago the current state of the art might be “very interesting”.–Joe]