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TV Ready for Iraq War

According to the Israeli newspaper Yedi'ot Aharonot, a CNN film crew has been studying rooftops along Tel Aviv?s seafront in recent weeks so they?ll be able to film the action in case Iraq launches missiles at Israel. Do they know something the rest of us don?t?

In the 1991 Gulf war, Iraqi missiles fell on towns in the Dan District, and CNN, like other foreign television networks, documented the Scud missile attacks from the roof of the Tel Aviv Hilton. CNN spokeswoman in Israel Anne Rosen says, ?The network should not be regarded as having prior knowledge of developments with Iraq.?

In the unlikely case that Saddam Hussein relents and allows the UN to resume weapons inspections there, what will happen if we discover a huge cache of bacterial or chemical weapons? Ashok Mulchandani of the University of California, says bacteria can digest chemical-weapons stockpiles. His team has created genetically engineered bacteria that can also scrub pesticides from farm equipment.

GM Escherichia coli bacteria could make a cheap, green bioreactor that can break down dangerous organophosphate residues from weapons or from crop dusters, tractors or animal dips, says Mulchandani. Current methods for disposing of organophosphates include rinsing and incineration.

In 1995, members of the Japanese Aum Shinrikyo cult released the nerve gas sarin, which is an organophosphate that cripples the central nervous system, on the Tokyo subway, killing 12 people.

Says chemical engineer George Georgiou of the University of Texas, ?It?s a cute way to solve the problem.?

Worried about the future? Read ?No Such Thing as Doomsday? by Philip Hoag, click here.

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