Greg Koblentz, member of the Center’s Scientists Working Group of Chemical and Biological Threats, spoke with Politico about the Department of Defense change in approach to biological threats.
“Gregory Koblentz, the director of the Biodefense Graduate Program at George Mason University, said the decision by the administration to look more holistically at chemical and biological threats is a strategic national security decision — one that could help the U.S. keep pace with countries such as China, Russia and Iran.
“There’s definitely a much higher kind of salience and appreciation of how nation-states are using these technologies,” Koblentz said. “Until fairly recently, the focus has mostly been on ISIS and Al Qaeda using chemical and biological terrorism. This [strategy] might be another kind of paradigm shift.”
“Russia’s use of Novichok on multiple occasions has definitely highlighted the threat that so-called fourth-generation agents pose,” Koblentz said. “These are agents that we know existed, but people were not really focused on them because they were secret until recently.” Read more