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U.S. Congress Appropriations Committee Hearing ~
RESEARCH, DEVELOPMENT,
TESTING, AND EVALUATION OF
SYNTHETIC BIOLOGICAL AGENTS


Published by the U.S. Government Printing Office
Reposted on the Internet by the PhilFam Committee
22 June 1998



NOTE: The document below (designated as "Part 5") is a true copy of the transcript of the July 1, 1969 testimony of Dr. Donald MacArthur -- a high-level Defense Department biological research administrator -- before the House Committee on Appropriations, Subcommittee on Department of Defense. For those who hold the theory that AIDS is the result of a U.S. biological weapons program, this testimony is a smoking gun. MacArthur was then Deputy Director of Defense Research and Engineering. Congress approved the appropriation for the program.



 

DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE
APPROPRIATIONS FOR 1970

=========================================================

HEARINGS
BEFORE A
SUBCOMMITTEE OF THE
COMMITTEE ON APPROPRIATIONS
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

NINETY-FIRST CONGRESS

FIRST SESSION
____________

SUBCOMMITTEE ON DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE APPROPRIATIONS

GEORGE H. MAHON, Texas, Chairman

ROBERT L.F. SIKES, Florida
JAMIE L. WHITTEN, Mississippi
GEORGE W. ANDREWS, Alabama
DANIEL J. FLOOD, Arizona
JOHN M. SLACK, West Virginia
JOSEPH P. ADDABBO, New York
FRANK E. EVANS, Colorado
GLENARD P. LIPSCOMB, California
WILLIAM E. MINSHALL, Ohio
JOHN J. RHODES, Arizona
GLENN R. DAVIS, Wisconsin
R. L. MICHAELS, RALPH PRESTON, JOHN GARRETT, PETER MURPHY, ROBERT NICHOLAS
AND ROBERT FOSTER, Staff Assistants
_______________
  * Temporarily assigned.
 H.B. 15090

PART 5

RESEARCH, DEVELOPMENT, TEST, AND EVALUATION

Department of the Army

Statement of Director, Advanced Research Project Agency
Statement of Director, Defense Research and Engineering

__________

Printed for the use of the Committee on Appropriations
U.S. GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE
WASHINGTON : 1969
UNITED STATES SENATE LIBRARY

 


129TUESDAY, JULY 1, 1969

agents that we have ever considered. So, we have to believe they are
probably working in the same areas.

SYNTHETIC BIOLOGICAL AGENTS

      There are two things about the biological agent field I would like
to mention. One is the possibility of technological surprise. Molecular
biology is a field that is advancing very rapidly and eminent biologists
believe that within a period of 5 to 10 years it would be possible to
produce a synthetic biological agent, an agent that does not naturally
exist and for which no natural immunity could have been acquired.

      MR. SIKES. Are we doing any work in that field?
      DR. MACARTHUR. We are not.
      MR. SIKES. Why not? Lack of money or lack of interest?
      DR. MACARTHUR. Certainly not lack of interest.
      MR. SIKES. Would you provide for our records information on what
would be required, what the advantages of such a program would be,
the time and the cost involved?
      DR. MACARTHUR. We will be very happy to.
      (The information follows:)

      The dramatic progress being made in the field of molecular biology led us to
investigate the relevance of this field of science to biological warfare. A small group of experts considered this matter and provided the following observa- tions:
      1. All biological agents up the the present time are representatives of naturally
occurring disease, and are thus known by scientists throughout the world. They
are easily available to qualified scientists for research, either for offensive or
defensive purposes.
      2. Within the next 5 to 10 years, it would probably be possible to make a new
infective microorganism which could differ in certain important aspects from
any known disease-causing organisms. Most important of these is that it might
be refractory to the immunological and therapeutic processes upon which we
depend to maintain our relative freedom from infectious disease.
      3. A research program to explore the feasibility of this could be completed
in approximately 5 years at a total cost of $10 million.

      4. It would be very difficult to establish such a program. Molecular biology
is a relatively new science. There are not many highly competent scientists in the
field. Almost all are in university laboratories, and they are generally adequately
supported from sources other than DOD. However, it was considered possible
to initiate an adequate program through the National Academy of Sciences -
National Research Council (NAS-NRC).
      The matter was discussed with the NAS-NRC, and tentative plans were plans were made
to initiate the program. However decreasing funds in CB, growing criticism
of the CB program, and our reluctance to involve the NAS-NRC in such a con-
troversial endeavor have led us to postpone it for the past 2 years.
      It is a highly controversial issue and there are many who believe such
research should not be undertaken lest it lead to yet another method of massive
killing of large populations.
On the other hand, without the sure scientific
knowledge that such a weapon is possible, and an understanding of the ways it
could be done, there is little that can be done to devise defensive measures.
Should an enemy develop it, there is little doubt that this is an important area
of potential military technological inferiority in which there is no adequate
research program.

CROSS-COUNTRY SHIPMENT OF LETHAL AGENTS

      MR. SIKES. Now, let's talk about shipments. There has been a great
deal of discussion--most of it hostile--about the proposal to ship cer-
tain stocks of nerve gas across coutry for transporting to a deep


Further research on the origins of HIV: US Congressional hearings on Synthetic Biological Agents (US Government Printing Office);   Pentagon AIDS and Why Governments Are Covering-up Gulf War Syndrome by David Guyatt;   AIDS as a Weapon of War by Dr. William Douglass;   "Emerging Viruses -- AIDS & Ebola" by Dr. Leonard Horowitz;   Conférence Horowitz à Paris sur l'origine des VIH (Info SIDA Québec);   Chemical and Biological Weapons Threat Assessments by the Federation of American Scientists.


AAA Matilda Asia

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