Military Spending Spurs Interest In Research on Biological Weapons

Date: December 15, 1986 BOSTON-A sharp increase in U.S. military spending for research on biological warfare agents has raised concern about its effect on related fields and sparked debate on the nature of the work. The Defense Department expects to spend $73.2 million in 1987 on biological weapons research, a figure that has risen from $14.9 million at the start of the Reagan administration. Douglas Feith, former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Negotiations Policy, told a House sub-co

Seth Shulman
Dec 14, 1986

Date: December 15, 1986

BOSTON-A sharp increase in U.S. military spending for research on biological warfare agents has raised concern about its effect on related fields and sparked debate on the nature of the work.

The Defense Department expects to spend $73.2 million in 1987 on biological weapons research, a figure that has risen from $14.9 million at the start of the Reagan administration. Douglas Feith, former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Negotiations Policy, told a House sub-committee last summer that "the prevailing judgment of years ago that BW is not a militarily significant weapon is now quite un sustainable."

Most of this research focuses on the development of vaccines against some of the most deadly and exotic diseases known-diseases that could be unleashed as part of a biological warfare (BW) campaign. And while much of this research takes place at in-house Army, Navy and Air Force re...

Interested in reading more?

Become a Member of

Receive full access to digital editions of The Scientist, as well as TS Digest, feature stories, more than 35 years of archives, and much more!
Already a member?