Plagued by Man
Photograph by Lynn Johnson
Meet the wide variety of furry animals that can carry plague, on display at the Anti-Plague Institute in Almaty, Kazakhstan. For decades the Soviets developed weaponized forms of plague and other germs, but as far as anyone knows never deliberately used them on civilians. In World War II, however, the Japanese military killed perhaps 260,000 people in China with plague and other biological weapons. Their plan to drop plague-bearing fleas on the California coast was scuttled.