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In the 2005 adventure film "Sahara", treasure hunter Dirk Pitt is tracking down a Confederate ironclad named the CSS Texas, believing it to have sailed up the Niger River to an unknown location. He speaks to a priest at Labbezanga and they find the following record from the time:

Six days after the great storm, a dark ship rode without sails under the banner of a single star. It was driven upriver, never to return, bearing... death. It brought a sickness from here up to Gao, and bore over 300 souls to heaven. It was believed a damnation from Allah.

At the same time, WHO doctor Eva Rojas is investigating a plague-like sickness originating in Mali. We later find that the sickness is being caused by

illegal storage of toxic materials underneath a solar energy plant in Mali.

I haven't read the Clive Cussler novels, so I'm not familiar with the book version of events. Obviously the Texas wasn't carrying that same sickness, however.

What was the nature of the sickness carried by the CSS Texas?

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An unnamed Tropical Disease

The novel and movie cover some of the same ground but differ in a number of ways.

The ship, its contents and the mortal remains of its crew, they having succumbed to a tropical disease, are a century later discovered buried in an old, dried up riverbed of the Niger River.

Wikipedia

  • is it not something caused by anatagonist's power plant? something poisonous chemicals related? – Vishwa Dec 13 '17 at 14:08
  • 1
    Nope. This is hundreds of years before the toxic issues. – Paulie_D Dec 13 '17 at 14:23

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