An all-out nuclear war between nations would be the worst catastrophe in history. The tragedy is so huge, that it is difficult to comprehend the severity of the consequences caused by it. However, world’s richest man, Bill Gates is of the opinion that a bio-terrorist attack is going to prove to more destructive than a nuclear war. Speaking ahead of speech at the Royal United Services Institute in London (RUSI), Microsoft CEO said that terrorists could re-create diseases like small-box to create havoc.
“Bioterrorism is a much larger risk than a pandemic,” he told The Telegraph.
All these advances in biology have made it far easier for a terrorist to recreate smallpox, which is a highly fatal pathogen, where there is essentially no immunity remaining at this point,” he added.
Microsoft CEO’s charitable foundation provides funds for research that quickly spots outbreaks. He feels that it is more important than ever before that countries monitor diseases in order to prevent a global tragedy.
“When you are thinking about things that could cause in excess of 10 million deaths, even something tragic like a nuclear weapons incident wouldn’t get to that level. So the greatest risk is from a natural epidemic or an intentionally caused infection bioterrorism events,” he explained.
Earlier this year, he warned Munich that a pandemic holds the possibility of wiping out millions of people in the next 10 to 15 years. Gates said that a pandemic would be even more deadly than Spanish Flu outbreak in 1919, which killed around 100 million people. The virus managed to attack over one-third of the world’s population — three times as many as the World War I.
Bill Gates feels that the threat that a biological warfare holds is not being taken seriously enough. “Whether the next epidemic is unleashed by a quirk of nature or the hand of a terrorist, scientists say a fast-moving airborne pathogen could kill more than 30 million people in less than a year. So the world does need to think about this,” he told the audience at the conference.