08 September 2011

The Mirage Man

David Willman has written "The Mirage Man," a book about the anthrax scare of 2001.

I don't know anything about the book more than that, and what publisher's copy (and one review, to which I'll link you shortly)  says about it.

But I do know that Willman is a Pulitzer Prize winner.  Here is the citation.

And the subject of his new book is fascinating.  Here is something I wrote on the subject in this blog almost three years ago, during the insane autumn of 2008, one almost as wild in its ways as was the autumn of seven years before.

Here's a review of Willman's book that appeared this spring in the Los Angeles Times.

As the reviewer notes, the original "person of interest" was Steven Hatfill, a former Army weapons scientist. But as a district court judge eventually declared, there was "not a scintilla of evidence" that would have inculpated Hatfill, and the FBI eventually turned its feeble eye to Bruce Ivins.  Ivins committed suicide as investigators were closing in.

Given only that bare statement, you might well suspect that the FBI had the wrong man a second time, but this wrong man was more susceptible to psychological pressure tha Hatfill, took himself out of the picture, leaving the prosecution case from the threat of falsification.

You might suspect that but Willman would think you wrong.  He believes the case against Ivins is a strong one, and in lieu of any judicial forum for laying it out, he does so here.

I think I may actually have to read this book.

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Knowledge is warranted belief -- it is the body of belief that we build up because, while living in this world, we've developed good reasons for believing it. What we know, then, is what works -- and it is, necessarily, what has worked for us, each of us individually, as a first approximation. For my other blog, on the struggles for control in the corporate suites, see www.proxypartisans.blogspot.com.