*** Forwarding note from AFMICOPS--FSTCVMl 01/22/91 15:17 ***
Date: Jan 91 15:17:40 EST
To: arcentg2@sandman.[ b.2. ]
Subject: DISEASE INFORMATION
1. Please Pass the attached information to:
[ (b)(6) ]
2. As this is our first attempt over this circuit, please
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SUBJECT: Effects of Bombing on Disease Occurrence in Baghdad
ANALYST: [ (b)(6) ]
DATE: JAN 91
SUMMARY: Food- and waterborne diseases have the greatest
potential for outbreaks in the civilian and military
population over the next 30 to 60 days.
Increased incidence of diseases will be attributable to
degradation of normal preventive medicine, waste disposal,
water purification/distribution, electricity, and decreased
ability to control disease outbreaks. Any urban are
in Iraq that has received infrastructure damage will have
The following diseases are prioritized in descending order of
expected outbreak potential in Baghdad over the next 30 to 60
days. Prioritization is based on level of endemicity, seasonal
distribution, and mode of transmission.
1. FOOD- AND WATER-BORNE DISEASES:
Disease Primary Agents/Comments
a. Acute Diarrheas Bacterial: E. coli, Shigella spp., and
Protozoal: Giardia lamblia (particularly
children) and Entamoeba histolytica
Viral: Rotavirus (primarily children)
b. Typhoid/Paratyphoid Salmonella typhi, S. paratyphi
c. Cholera Difficult to assess. Poorly reported.
NOTE: Hepatitis A (HAV) is highly endemic, and therefore
causes a limited
threat to the indigenous population. -~
2. OTHER ENDEMIC DISEASES:
a. Influenza Strain A(H3N2) predominates over A(HlNl) and B.
b. Meningococcal Group A predominates, but W135 reporting has
Meningitis increased. Associated with overcrowding.
c. Childhood Diseases Primarily measles, but also diphtheria
d. Trachoma Associated with poor personal hygiene.
e. Intestinal Helminths Primarily ascariasis, ancylostomiasis,
|SUBJECT: Effects of Bombing on Disease Occurrence in Baghdad
3. VECTORBORNE DISEASES: Generally, vectorborne diseases are
more of a lon
term problem, with increased transmission occurring after 60
days. However, increased incidence can be expected, especially
in a prolonged military campaign.
a. Louse-borne typhus Rickettsia prowazekii. Associated with
poor hygiene and overcrowding, especially in winter months.
b. Leishmaniasis Primarily cutaneous form due to Leishmania
tropica. Focal increase associated with debris
c. Malaria Currently no indigenous transmission and
considered a low risk. Potential vectors are
4. More detailed explanations on conditions affecting
expected disease occurrence are available. Extrapolation of
this analysis should only be done after further consultation
with AFMIC analysts.
|SUBJECT: Iraq - Medical Civil Defense Preparations and BW
[ (b)(6) ]
DATE: JAN 91
According to open source press releases in November and
December, several Iraqi ministries delivered public health
information announcements outlining precautions that civilians
should be taking because of the Persian Gulf crisis
Early guidelines by the Ministry of Local Government called on
citizens to avoid careless use of drinking water, such as
using it for watering domestic gardens and washing cars and
sidewalks". In late December, the Baghdad Domesti
Service stated that 'the enemy may resort to biological war
means on human, animal, or plant targets; these germs include
bacteria, viruses-, fungi, and parasites which cause malaria
and dysentery". Also, the announcement provided guidelines in
the following subject areas for protecting personnel,
facilities food/water supplies, and crops from these
A. Health precautions (NFI) to reduce possibility of
B. Isolation of infected persons and contaminated areas to
prevent spread of disease.
C. "Sterilization" (decontamination) of infected persons and
contaminated equipment and areas.
D. Proper storage of food and water to avoid contamination.
E. Plans to protect crops.
Comment: These types of statements would increase public
awareness and encourage the civilian population to take
additional preventive measures against health problems (such
as medical shortages and disease outbreaks) that would result
from an infrastructure weakened by sanctions or military
Early statements may represent a legitimate attempt by the
Iraqi government to prepare the civilian population. However,
as the United Nations deadline approached, the Iraqi
government's tactics became more exploitative as indicated by
the "biological war" announcement propagandizing a possible
U.S. biological threat. (See AFMIC Weekly Wire 50-90 for
additional information on similar disinformation statements.)
The government disinformation citing potential increases of
endemic diseases that are not biological warfare candidates
would allow the government to blame the United States for
public health problems created by military conflict.
Additionally, an even more subversive motive could have formed
the rationale for the disinformation campaign. The statements
would create a scenario that would allow the U.S. to be blamed
for potential civilian biological warfare (BW) casualties
resulting from Iraqi BW use or contamination by agents
released as a result of damage inflicted by coalition forces
on BW facilities. Military planners, particularly civil
affairs and humanitarian assistance groups, and political
officials should be aware of the potential for the Iraqi
population to blame coalition forces for these problems.