Terrorists could use the Ebola virus to make a dirty biological bomb. Very few laboratories have the virus, but they are highly protected. However, terrorists can still obtain it easily from West Africa.i In recent months, the virus has spread widely killing hundreds of people. The worst affected countries are Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone.ii Most of the outbreaks happen in remote rural areas although some infections and deaths have also been reported in urban areas. In these countries, the governments do not have complete control of their borders. Terrorists can enter and leave the countries unnoticed. It is also possible for terrorists to smuggle the Ebola virus out of those countries without the knowledge of the authorities.
The Ebola virus threatens international security because it is easier to make a biological bomb out of it in comparison to making nuclear weapons. It is difficult for terrorist groups to make nuclear bombs because such weapons require laboratories with sophisticated equipment. Uranium, the key ingredient, is also hard to obtain because of the strict regulations on its trade. In addition, nuclear facilities can be detected and subsequently destroyed by the world powers. However, an Ebola bomb can be much easier to make. Once the terrorists find the virus, they can produce the biological bombs in mobile laboratories that are difficult to detect.
The Ebola virus also threatens international security because there is no vaccine or treatment to prevent it from spreading. For the case of West Africa, the WHO authorized the use of untested drugs to treat patients because the virus had spread uncontrollably (BBC, 2014).iii The American firm manufacturing the drug has also said that it has run out of stock.iv Thus, if any terrorist group unleashed the virus in the form of biological bomb, many people would die because of the absence of vaccines or treatment. The virus kills 90% of those who are infected; very few