|“||2600 dead or dying Americans. If that bug gets out of there, Billy, 260 million Americans'll be dead or dying! Those people are casualties of war, Billy! I would give 'em all a medal if I could, but they are casualties of war!||„|
|~ McClintock to Brigadier General Ford.|
Major General Donald "Donnie" McClintock is the main antagonist of the 1995 disaster film Outbreak. He is a corrupt U.S. Army general who works for the United States Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases (USAMRIID.)
On July 1967, In Motaba River Valley, Zaire, a virus with a 100% mortality rate starts infecting people. The virus becomes known as the Motaba virus, and it's so deadly that it causes severe bleeding and liquefies internal organs, killing within 3 days.
The virus wipes out Motaba River Valley, and a devastatingly huge fire bomb is dropped onto Motaba River Valley in order to reduce the chances of further infection. The bomb was dropped on the orders of corrupt McClintock, even though an army surgeon, Brigadier General Billy Ford, was against the idea.
His reason for doing so is that since the virus was new, by keeping it a secret, he could ensure that no other nation would be aware of it's existence. Therefore, the virus could be made into a biological weapon that only the U.S. Military would have control over to which they could use against their enemies.
27 years later, in 1994, there is another outbreak in Motaba River Valley. At the United States Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases (USAMRIID), located at Fort Detrick in Maryland, Colonel Sam Daniels is doing research on the Motaba virus, and so is his ex-wife Roberta Keough, who works at the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta, Georgia.
A monkey carrying the Motaba virus stows away on a ship that is heading for the USA, and after the monkey's arrival, people in Cedar Creek, California start becoming infected by the virus. Sam and Roberta head into Cedar Creek with fellow doctor Casey Schuler, and they start searching for the monkey, thinking that the monkey is the key to finding a cure. Along the way, Sam stumbles onto some information that may be of help—McClintock has been concealing vital information from the president of the United States.
Since 1967, McClintock and Ford have been in possession of E-1101, a serum that was made to cure the virus. McClintock has been trying to stop Ford from coming forward with this information, and so far, McClintock has succeeded. McClintock now wants to drop onto Cedar Creek the kind of firebomb that was dropped on Motaba River Valley 27 years ago. Sam and Roberta figure out that the virus in the Cedar Creek outbreak is a new strain of the Motaba virus—an airborne strain that is even more contagious than the flu.
The bombing plan, codenamed "Operation Cleansweep", has been greenlighted by the President, and McClintock plans to use the bombing to cover up the virus's existence to advance his bioweapon project. To prevent Daniels from finding a cure, McClintock has him arrested by implicating Daniels as a carrier of the virus. This leads Daniels and Major Salt to search for the host animal to save the town. Flying a helicopter to the ship that carried the host animal, Daniels obtains a picture of the monkey, called Betsy, and broadcasts it on the news, which Mrs. Jeffries realizes her daughter Kate is playing with in their backyard. She calls the station, and the two men arrive at the family's house. However Colonel Briggs had monitored the call and contacts McClintock who is on his way by helicopter to intercept them. Kate coaxes out Betsy, which Salt tranquilizes. Learning from Daniels that the host animal is captured, Ford delays the bombing.
Flying back, Daniels and Salt are confronted by McClintock. During the resulting chase, Daniels has Salt fire two rockets into the trees to trick McClintock into thinking they crashed so they could escape by flying low enough to avoid being detected by radar. Returning to Cedar Creek, Salt mixes Betsy's antibodies with the E-1101 to create an anti-serum. Meanwhile McClintock arrives back at base and is angry that Ford had delayed the bombing and has it resumed, while refusing to listen to Ford to call off the bombing as he still wishes to keep the virus a secret. When Daniels discovers Operation Cleansweep is in progress, aware that McClintock will not call off the bombing, he and Salt take it upon themselves to fly in the way of the bomber, commanded by Sandman One, to stop it.
Though McClintock orders them not to respond to Daniels and carry out their mission, with support from Ford who advises them in getting positioning their helicopter in a head-on collision, Daniels is able to stay in the way of the plane long enough to convince Sandman One and his co-pilot that information was purposely withheld from them and that they are now able to cure the surviving townspeople. Sandman One detonates the bomb over water instead of the town. Before McClintock can order another bombing, Ford, having had enough of McClintock's single-minded obsession, relieves McClintock of command and places him under arrest for withholding vital information from the President. As Colonel Briggs is left to carry out Ford's orders, McClintock promises that he will make sure that Ford will go down with him, something that Ford ignores since the bio-weapon is now out of their hands as he watches McClintock being taken away.