The world drew a sharp breath as reports came out of Homs, Syria, about possible use of BZ (or, similarly, Agent 15), a chemical "incapacitant" that causes deep confusion and hallucinations for upward of three days.
Doctors on the ground gave their diagnosis of the victims, which fell directly in line with the symptoms associated with BZ — and we reported on it.
An immediate outcry sought to discredit the doctors who made the diagnoses, concluding that they were trying to draw the U.S. into the conflict in order to oust Assad. Anyone on the ground at that time though would know that the alternative to Assad is looking worse by the day.
The likeliest scenario is that the doctors were simply making a diagnosis.
Furthermore, use of BZ is unlikely to illicit a military reaction out of the U.S. It's not very deadly, and America knows that because they experimented with it in the 1960s—using U.S. troops as guinea pigs.
The U.S. may also have had played a role in letting the chemical get into the Syria during the Iraq war.
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Produced by Robert Libetti
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