Which will it turn out to be? A case of international terrorism, or domestic terrorism committed by a Democrat with a severe case of Trump Derangement Syndrome?
Only time will tell.
Two envelopes addressed to Secretary of Defense James Mattis and Chief of Naval Operations Adm. John Richardson have initially tested positive for the deadly poison ricin at the Pentagon’s mail facility, according to a report.
The packages, which were delivered Monday, were intercepted before making it into the sprawling headquarters of the Defense Department in Virginia near Washington, DC, spokesman Chris Sherwood said Tuesday.
They triggered alarms as they underwent a security screening at the off-site mail processing center, according to the Military Times.
A defense official told CNN that the intended recipients were Mattis and Richardson.
“On Monday, the Pentagon Force Protection Agency detected a suspicious substance during mail screening at the Pentagon’s remote screening facility,” Army Col. Rob Manning, a Pentagon spokesman, said in a statement.
“The envelopes were taken by the FBI this morning for further analysis,” he said, adding that all US Postal Service mail received at the screening facility Monday was under quarantine and posed no threat to Pentagon personnel.
The FBI said in a statement that as the envelopes are undergoing further testing, “we will have no further comment.”
Ricin, a highly toxic compound extracted from castor beans, has been used in terror plots and is lethal in tiny doses if swallowed, inhaled or injected. It is 6,000 times more potent than cyanide.
If ingested, it causes nausea, vomiting and internal bleeding of the stomach and intestines, followed by failure of the liver, spleen and kidneys, and death by collapse of the circulatory system.
Recently, the Trump administration has chosen an Army base and an Air Force base, both in Texas, to house detained illegal aliens swept up in the federal government’s crackdown on illegal immigration, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said Monday.
Mattis said he could not confirm specifics, such as the number of illegal aliens to be sheltered at Fort Bliss and Goodfellow Air Force Base. He spoke to reporters in Alaska alongside Sen. Dan Sullivan, an Alaska Republican.
“We’ll provide whatever support the Department of Homeland Security needs in order to house the people that they have under their custody,” Mattis said. “We will work that out week by week, the numbers obviously are dynamic so we will have to stay flexible in our logistics support.”
Mattis was in Alaska to visit Fort Greely, where the U.S. military maintains an arsenal of missiles designed to shoot down long-range ballistic missiles. Afterward he was heading to Beijing and then to Tokyo and Seoul.
The U.S. military has a long history of providing logistical support to people “escaping tyranny” or affected by natural disasters, Mattis said, explaining he recognized the “political aspects” of the situation along the southern border of the U.S.
“We provide logistics support and we’re not going to get into the political aspect,” he said. “Providing housing, shelter for those who need it is a legitimate governmental function.”
The number of detained migrants who might be held at Bliss and Goodfellow has not been announced, but the Pentagon had said last week that it had been asked to be prepared to shelter as many as 20,000 unaccompanied children, reports Fox News.
One official said unaccompanied illegal alien children detained after crossing the U.S. border would be sheltered at one of the bases — Bliss or Goodfellow — and the other base would house families of illegal alien detainees. Under the arrangement, the Defense Department would provide the land but the operations would be run by other agencies.
James E Windsor, Overpasses News Desk
October 2nd, 2018