This is part of an effort by the bipartisan Panel to educate the public about biological risks and why a strong biodefense enterprise is critical to the health and security of the Nation.
Germs have always been our greatest enemy, and now they're more dangerous than ever, said Brooks. At the very moment some people are questioning vaccines, others are looking for ways to cook up the next pandemic in their basements. Preventing the next plague begins with education, and as taxpayers and voters we need to understand what we're up against. That's why I agreed to write this graphic novel for the Blue Ribbon Study Panel on Biodefense, because the experts can't help us if we don't help ourselves. We need to find an informed middle ground between blind denial and blind panic.
The Panel will release Germ Warfare this weekend at Awesome Con - one of the largest comic book and fan conventions on the East Coast - at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, DC. Brooks, along with former Homeland Security Advisor and Panel Member Ken Wainstein, and the Panel's Executive Director, Dr. Asha M. George, will host a discussion and provide free copies of the graphic novel at 12pm this Saturday in Room 146. The graphic novel will also be available for free download this Saturday at www.germwarfare.org.
Before humans even knew that germs caused illness, they knew they could use diseases as weapons for war. Germ Warfare traces the long, brutal story of those biological weapons from the infected arrows of Bronze Age archers, to the plague factories of World War 2, up through the biological arms race of the Cold War, and into our modern age of bioterrorism and rampant genetic engineering.
My office received a letter loaded with anthrax and I can tell you, Max's story really spoke to me, said Panel Member and former Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle. I know first-hand how weaponized biological agents can cause panic and do harm. It is important to our Panel to get these messages to the public, in ways that they can relate to. Max has done a terrific job of doing just that with this graphic novel.