Dateline August 3, 2005, U.S. Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld secretly orders the purchase of 35,000 pigs from Sichuan province in China that are infected with a new virulent strain of Streptococcus suis common in pigs but has recently jumped to humans causing nausea, fever, vomiting and bleeding under the skin and eventual convulsive death in those that handle and butcher and consume the sick pigs. The Defense Department is shipping the pigs to central Iraq where they will be set free in Sunni towns and villages where insurgents and foreign terrorists are known to be hiding under cover with the hope that due to severe food shortages people will butcher and consume the infected pigs leading to mass casualties among insurgents and some collateral damage amongst the general population.
The pigs were secured through the Chinese government with promises of even more favorable trade policies between the U.S. and China. The Streptococcus suis has combined with another rare form of bacteria and mutated into a form that there is presently no vaccine or treatment for. The Chinese government had quarantined the pigs until a vaccine can be developed. Although cases have also been reported in Guangdong province, hundreds of miles southeast of Sichuan and Hong Kong has reported two infections since the latest outbreak, Chinese health officials have not announced whether those are connected to the Sichuan cases.
Thomas Alexander, retired deputy director of the University of Cambridge's School of Veterinary Medicine, an expert in studying this particular strep germ. " They're describing death within 24 hours," he said by telephone from England. The disease is typically spread from pigs to people through cuts or wounds on the hands or by eating undercooked or raw meat.
Based on his limited information, Alexander said he's not overly concerned about the pig disease spreading across borders since bacterial diseases tend to change more slowly than viruses like flu. Although there have been several cases of Streptococcus suis spreading from person to person in China. "It's difficult for us get the real information for Chinese agriculture," he said. " Few labs in the world are capable of studying this."
This makes Streptococcus suis the perfect biological warfare weapon against the mounting insurgency in Iraq that will save military lives Rumsfeld and other officials in the Defense Department and Administration have been reported as saying "off the record" in leaked conversations to the mainstream press who are hesitant to report it without official waivers from confidential sources close to Rumsfeld, the Top Brass and the White house having learned their lessons from the Valerie Plame case and the misfortunes and prison time of reporter Judith Miller from the Times.
Rumsfeld was reportedly asked by an aid if extremists Muslims eat pork. Rumsfeld is reported as saying. "They are such devils they would eat their own children to live another day to kill American GI's. Why wouldn't they eat pork?"
The pigs have reportedly been let loose in the Sunni Triangle region in Iraq but so far no deaths have been reported of pigs or insurgents leading to speculation that the operation may not be as successful as had been anticipated by US Forces.