A truly scary
concept. It is already well-established that certain diseases and conditions afflict some racial groups more than others. For example, there are some diseases that are almost exclusively found in the Jewish community
(I'm not being anti-semitic
or anything, it's just that the Jewish community
is one of the oldest and most racially pure, so they are interesting to scientists).
Now take the concept and turn it upside down. What if, using our knowledge of the human genome, and racially specific traits, together with genetic engineering, we design a disease, let's say a very lethal and contagious one, that only affects members of a particular racial group? Certainly, no racial group is completely pure, but if you also have a vaccine and/or cure designed (which isn't hard, considering you designed the virus/bacterium in the first place), then it's not a big issue. And it's a very potent weapon. You could then unleash the virus and basically engender genocide.
The scarier thing is that this sort of thing could be done by cults or other underground groups. If the Ku Klux Clan could develop an anti-African virus, can you imagine the consequences?
The scariest thing? There's evidence that it's already been done or is being done. A report by the Sunday Times, a highly respected UK newspaper, tells us that the South African government was working on such a virus to apply to Africans. Even more ironic, it appears that Israel is trying to develop or has already developed an Arab specific virus. The storu indicates that though Arabs and Jews are genetically similar, by studying the difference between, say, Iraqi Jews and Iraqi Arabs, Israeli researchers were able to find traits specific only to the Arabs.