Huda Salih Mahdi Ammash


Huda Salih Mahdi Ammash

Huda Salih Mahdi Ammash ( _ar. هدى صالح مهدي عماش) (born Baghdad 1953) is an American-educated Iraqi scientist, dubbed Mrs. Anthrax and Chemical Sally. [" [http://www.cnn.com/2005/WORLD/meast/05/20/saddam.photos/ Pentagon vows to probe Saddam photos] ." "CNN".] Ammash was number 53 on the Pentagon's list of the 55 most wanted, the five of hearts in the deck of Most wanted Iraqi playing cards, and the only woman to be featured.

U.S. officials allege that Ammash, who earned a Ph.D. in microbiology from the University of Missouri–Columbia, and who was appointed to the Revolutionary Command Council in May 2001, helped to rebuild Iraq's biological weapons program in the mid-1990s after the Gulf War. American officials say she was one of a new generation of leaders given leading posts within the Baath party by Saddam Hussein. In one of several videos that Saddam released during the war, Ammash was the only woman among about a half-dozen men seated around a table. The videos were broadcast on Iraqi TV as invading forces drew closer to Baghdad: it is not known when the meeting took place or what the significance was of her appearance on camera.

Ammash served as president of Iraqi's microbiology society and as dean at the University of Baghdad. U.S. officials said she was trained by Nassir al-Hindawi, described by United Nations inspectors as the "father of Iraq's biological weapons program".

She received her undergraduate degree from the University of Baghdad, followed by a Masters in microbiology from Texas Woman's University in Denton, Texas. She spent four years at the University of Missouri–Columbia in pursuit of her doctorate in microbiology, which she received in December 1983. Her thesis focused on the effects of radiation, paraquat and the chemotherapy drug Adriamycin, on bacteria and mammals.

She conducted research into illnesses that may have been caused by depleted uranium from shells used in the 1991 Gulf War, [cite news
first = Ahmed
last = Janabi
title = Iraqi scientist's health causes concern
url = http://english.aljazeera.net/NR/exeres/ABDCF59C-1951-43B0-92AE-220BFFC052E0.htm
work = Al Jazeera
date = 2005-01-05
accessdate = 2007-01-15
] and had published several papers on the health effects of the war and the subsequent sanctions. [cite news
first = Abu
last = Spinoza
title = Jailed for Exposing Costs of Sanctions & War? Dr. Huda Ammash's Detention
url = http://www.counterpunch.org/spinoza05082003.html
work = CounterPunch
date = 2003-05-08
accessdate = 2007-01-15
] She is also said to be currently suffering from breast cancer, a possible side effect of her depleted-uranium studies. [cite news
title = Iraq's jailed Mrs Anthrax 'dying'
url = http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/4138767.stm
work = BBC
date = 2005-01-01
accessdate = 2007-01-15
]

Ammash's father was a high-level Baath Party member in Iraq, who became defense minister in 1963, deputy prime minister in 1968, and an ambassador in 1977. He is believed to have been killed on the orders of Saddam Hussein in 1981.

Ammash surrendered to coalition forces on May 9, 2003 and was one of two Iraqi women known to be in U.S. custody as of April 2005. The other was the British-educated Dr. Rihab Taha, who led Iraq's biological weapons program until 1995.

Both women were released in December 2005 after they were among those an American-Iraqi board process found were no longer a security threat and would have no charges filed against them [cite news
title = US sets Saddam's scientists free
url = http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/4542084.stm
work = BBC
date = 2005-12-19
accessdate = 2007-01-15
] despite protests. [cite news
first = Robert
last = Scheer
title = Dr. Germ and Mrs. Anthrax Set Free
url = http://www.thenation.com/doc/20060109/scheer1228
work = The Nation
date = 2005-12-28
accessdate = 2007-01-15
]

References


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