Archive for category Flu psyop

corruption news

1. military staff in Malaysia linked info to unnamed foreign embassy

KUALA LUMPUR - MALAYSIA’S defence minister reportedly said on Thursday that military personnel had been paid to leak security information to a foreign embassy in Kuala Lumpur.

The alleged leak was unveiled in a probe conducted by the ministry’s intelligence corps together with police, Defence Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said according to state media and The Star newspaper.

‘I don’t want anyone at any position to sell information to external parties,’ he was quoted as saying by The Star on its website. ‘I will make an announcement after meeting the prime minister (Najib Razak) regarding the information that was leaked to a foreign embassy, which allegedly used internal sources,’ he added.

Mr Ahmad Zahid did not name the embassy involved but urged diplomats to carry out their duties properly and warned that action can be taken against perpetrators under the country’s official secrets laws.

‘I hope no one will take advantage of their positions in this country to carry out unethical activities,’ he reportedly said. ‘I believe they have been paid,’ he added, referring to the military personnel allegedly involved in the act.

An aide to the minister said he could not immediately confirm the minister’s remarks when contacted by AFP. Mr Ahmad Zahid told national news agency Bernama that his ministry has been monitoring its staff over any possible information leakage especially since the theft of two US-made fighter jet engines worth US$29 million (S$41 million). — AFP

source: straits times

2. Lancet slammed: vaccine science poisoned by special interests in pharmamedia — The Lancet threw that MMR guy under the bus by discrediting him (but please don’t notice their conflicts of interest!) they can try to conflate all people who question vaccines. this has been covered widely in corporate media, natch.

The editors of Medical Veritas journal have condemned The Lancet’s retraction of the controversial study by Dr. Andrew Wakefield, charging editor Richard Horton with pandering to special interests in a conspiracy to defraud the public about the risks of vaccinations.

In 1998, The Lancet published the contested study linking autism and intestinal problems to the risky MMR triple virus vaccine. Yesterday, following the British General Medical Council’s decision that Dr. Wakefield had been “dishonest,” The Lancet’s editor retracted the article saying the Council’s report made it “utterly clear, without any ambiguity at all, that the statements in the paper were utterly false.”…

The Winter, 2010 issue of Medical Veritas, evidenced gross conflicting interests undermining the The Lancet’s integrity. Following the publication of Dr. Wakefield’s controversial study, Reed-Elsevier-ChoicePoint mergers occurred. The mega-company formed has nearly monopolized the medical scientific publishing industry. Previous to this, The Lancet editors protested the “damaging” of medicine and health science by pharmaceutical companies.

“Now it is obvious Dr. Horton’s company has been grossly contaminated by special interests as biased as Dr. Ross’s ‘PharmaCouncil’,” Dr. Horowitz said.

Reed-Elsevier-ChoicePoint, it turns out, is directed by Chief Executive Officer, Sir Crispin Davis, according to a Reuter’s News Service promotion for GlaxoSmithKline recently published. According to Forbes, Sir Davis was knighted by the Queen of England for his “service to the information industry.” He has served as a Non-Executive Independent Director of GlaxoSmithKline, PLC since 2003. Sir Davis spent his early career with Procter & Gamble.

more @ prevent disease

3. Taiwanese held in smuggling US made military components to Iran –  looks like a little sting to fluff the case against Iran. lots of “could be’s”….

MIAMI - US AUTHORITIES said on Thursday they arrested a Taiwanese man for allegedly smuggling US-made military components to Iran that could help the Islamic republic develop missiles and unmanned drones.

Yi-Lan Chen, 40, who also goes by Kevin Chen, was arrested on Wednesday on the US Pacific territory to Guam and is being sent to Miami, where prosecutors had sought his arrest.

If convicted, Chen faces up to 20 years in prison and up to US$1 million (S$1.4 million) in fines. Prosecutors said that Chen had exported ‘dual-use’ technology - which ostensibly has civilian purposes but can be applied for the military - to Taiwan or Hong Kong where it would be reloaded and shipped to Iran.

‘The dual-use items allegedly exported in this case could easily be used in missile development and other military components,’ US Attorney Jeffrey Sloman said in Miami.

‘Such conduct poses a serious threat to our national security, and will not be tolerated,’ he said. The goods Chen is accused of exporting to Iran include P200 turbine engines and spare parts, which can be used for model airplanes but also for unmanned military drones, prosecutors said.

‘This case will send a message to those individuals who attempt to profit by illegally supplying improper dual-use technology to other countries,’ said Anthony Mangione, an US immigration agent investigating the case. Iran is under a raft of sanctions imposed by the United States, United Nations and European Union over its nuclear program and its support for hardline Islamist movements overseas. — AFP

source: straits times

4. Victor Bout ordered to appear in Thai court

Russian businessman and alleged arms dealer Viktor Bout has been summoned to appear in a Thai court on February 16, one of his lawyers said on Friday. Former Russian army officer Bout, 42, remains in custody in a Thai jail after the Bangkok Criminal Court refused in August to extradite him to the United States, where he is facing four terrorism-related charges and a possible life sentence. “I was informed that my client had been asked to appear in court on February 16. However, I was not told why he had been summoned,” Thai lawyer Chamroen Panompakakom told RIA Novosti. He suggested that Bout could face an additional questioning or the announcement of an appeals court verdict on his extradition case.

more @ ria novosti

5. um, Frank Timis hearts Sierra Leone. you see what admitting to a few little mistakes can do? a little ball-fluffing never hurt anyone.

It is quite easy for anyone to be suspicious of a large investment initiative from an international company in a small African country with huge mineral wealth and potential. A lot has been written about African Minerals and Frank Timis in the past. But most of what has been written focused mainly on the mistakes of the past – which have been fully acknowledged by the company’s management. Surely everyone deserves a second chance. Especially when that chance is given to someone whose determination to prove everyone wrong can only be matched with his vision to end the poverty-stricken environment structure of a country he has come to fall in love with.  Timis has lent his support to Sparks, a UK based children’s medical charity whose remit is to fund research across the whole spectrum of paediatric medicine, and has invested in a company developing a more effective method of treating malaria. And he can even do more for Sierra Leone!

…Frank Timis once said  “the best lie is the truth, because you never get caught.”  Reputable international renowned companies like Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan to Macquarie, have backed his business projects for the past 15 years. This goes to show the faith big companies have in Timis. He may be a colorful personality, but he surely has the brains to turn things around.

…The United Nations recently declared the company’s Tonkolili development to be the Most Effective Corporate Social Responsibility Project ever embarked on. But he surely does not get the credit he deserves for such amazing feats of accomplishments. With all this backdrop, Frank Timis says he is not looking for recognition for his philanthropy. He is always looking forward to the next deal.

more @ newstime africa

6. Angola man accused of teen sex plot

An Angola man faces federal charges in New York, accusing him of transporting a 15-year-old girl across state lines for the purposes of having sex with her last fall. In late January, Foster Creager, 40, was arrested in Steuben County. He is scheduled to appear before a federal judge in the southern district of New York on Monday. According to the criminal complaint, a 15-year-old girl went missing from Hyde Park, N.Y., on Sept. 10. FBI agents discovered she had been communicating via e-mail with someone named “Kenneth Bone.”

Telephone records linked the phone number used by “Kenneth Bone” to Creager, of the 4300 block of West U.S. 20 in Angola.

On Sept. 11, Steuben County sheriff’s officers went to a mobile home and recreational vehicle park in Angola and saw Creager standing next to an RV. He told police the teen was inside. During an interview with detectives, Creager said he met the girl two or three months earlier on the Internet. He said he picked up the girl in New York and drove with her and another person to Indiana. In court documents filed in federal court in Fort Wayne, the other person is identified as Judy DeLong. Both DeLong and Creager have been indicted on a single count of transporting a minor across state lines with the intent to engage in criminal sexual activity.

Creager told police he and the 15-year-old were “boyfriend and girlfriend” but said he suspected she was not 18 when he brought her to Indiana.

The teen told investigators that Creager told her she would need to be “in hiding” for three years until she turned 18, according to court documents.

DNA collected during a forensic examination of the teen matched Creager’s, according to court documents.

source: journalgazette.net

India - so important

1. no sooner does gates leave — they probably didn’t even clear his lunch dishes yet — than we find out that The Terrorists Are Ready to ATTACK! like — immediately.

NEW DELHI: Army chief Deepak Kapoor on Tuesday warned that 26/11 type Mumbai terror attacks were a possibility and that India has to take all steps to counter such strikes. “We have to take all steps to prevent any Mumbai type attacks. We cannot rule out apprehensions of such possibilities,” Kapoor told reporters on the sidelines of an Army function.  To a question if there were any terror alerts in the recent times, he said the South Asian region is infested with terror groups. Be it India, Afghanistan or Pakistan, “we have to collectively battle such threats.”

…On the Naxal menace, Kapoor said the Army would continue to train paramilitary forces to fight against the Naxals and it would be an ongoing process.  “The battle against Naxals will not be over in one day. To eradicate Naxalism, it is going to take time. It is going to be a long drawn battle,” he said, giving examples of counter-insurgency operations in Jammu and Kashmir and the Northeast which had gone on for decades. He said providing strategy and equipment to paramilitary forces in the fight against Naxals would be a futuristic option.

more @ times of india

2. Air India planes — on high alert

NEW DELHI: Government has put all Air India planes operating in the country’s neighbourhood on high security alert and directed the airlines to deploy sky marshalls following intelligence inputs that Pakistan-based LET and other terror groups were planning to hijack a flight….According to intelligence inputs, terrorist groups having allegiance with al-Qaida, Lashker-e-Taiba and Jamat-ul-Dawa were planning to hijack an Air India plane especially operating in or from SAARC countries — Nepal, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Maldives, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India as well.

more @ times of india

3. OR, they  might use hang gliders or toy airplanes. ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE WITH THE WILY TERRORISTS! it’s very important to keep looking up in the sky in the most paranoid manner possible. thank you for your cooperation. this will make for excellent teevee footage…

NEW DELHI: Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba has acquired more than 50 para-gliding equipment from Europe, setting off alarm bells that these could be used to carry out air-borne suicide attacks in the country….The input about movement of overground workers, owing allegiance to LeT, in Europe led the sleuths to find out that they were on a shopping spree for para-gliding equipment, the sources said….Radars located at strategic locations have been tuned to intercept all low flying objects and authorities are not taking any chances, sources said. …Ahead of the Republic Day, elaborate air defence measures, including deployment of anti-aircraft guns, have also been taken to check possible intrusion of air space.  Besides, helicopters of the Indian Air Force will hover over the areas around Rajpath and all along the route of the Republic Day parade. Earlier, intelligence reports suggested that Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence had directed the militants operating in Jammu and Kashmir to use explosive-laden ‘Toy Planes’ to hit VIPs in the state and the national capital.

more @ times of india

4. get your FRESH terror alerts right here !!!

NEW DELHI: Intelligence agencies on Friday sounded a terror alert in Kolkata, Mumbai and Delhi following reports that terrorists had sneaked into these cities to target vital installations. Home ministry sources said that Taliban-trained ‘fidayeen’ (suicide squads) had reportedly entered the country to carry out attacks at specific iconic structures. Barely a fortnight back, there was a similar alert saying that ‘Pashtun-looking’ suicide bombers, trained by Taliban, had entered India to launch a fresh wave of attacks. Security has been beefed up at key installations and patrolling has been intensified in market places, railway stations, airports and hotels, sources said.

source: times of india

and: Officials said the government regularly issues advisory to states, especially before Republic Day, Independence Day and major religious festivals, to remain on alert and take measures to thwart attempts of militant organisations and Maoists.

5. India not alarmed at US supplying drones to Pak. pfft. why would they be? these are only used to kill terrorists. not to worry.

BANGALORE: India is not perturbed over the US supplying drones, or unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), to Pakistan as long as they are used against the Taliban militants, Chief of Air Staff PV Naik said on Friday….The Indian Air Force (IAF) chief said he was not unduly concerned over such a development as it had no bearing on India. US defence secretary Robert Gates said in Islamabad late on Thursday that the US planned to provide Pakistan with a dozen Shadow aerial drones to help its military to take on the Taliban militants. …The US has been employing armed drones for missile strikes against al-Qaida and Taliban operatives in Pakistan, fuelling anti-American sentiment there and attracting public condemnation from Islamabad.

more @ times of india

6. Holbrooke: India is so, so, so important. so really, i hope you understand that a little duty-free legislation would do WONDERS for resolving the intractable problems in Pakistan and Afghanistan.

“I want to be sure that everyone here recognises how centrally important Indian will be to this (the US success in Afghanistan and Pakistan),” he told US lawmakers at a Congressional hearing on Afghanistan and Pakistan convened by the powerful Senate Foreign Relations Committee chaired by Senator John Kerry, a key aid of President Barack Obama…. “India is not formally part of my mandate, but with the support of the Indians, I try to go to New Delhi as often as I can to keep them informed and to discuss the situation with them,” Holbrooke told US lawmakers.

“I don’t think it would be valuable to go into details in the public forum, but I do want to stress that the Indians are very, very anxious that we succeed in Afghanistan. They’re supporting us,” he said. …”I know that all of you feel that they ought to do more, and I understand that. We all hope that they will be able to find ways to deal with all of the militants in the frontier areas. But there are two full Pakistani divisions right now just in Swat, and they have pulled over a hundred thousand troops off their eastern border in order to deal with this,” he said.

Noting that Pakistan is facing capacity issues, he said: “That’s why, in addition to asking for the Kerry-Lugar-Berman legislation, we have asked for increases in FMF and other forms of military assistance.” …”That is why we’re so hopeful that the ROZ legislation will pass the Senate - it passed the House in the last session - because it is both symbolically and substantively important,” he said in reference to a pending legislation in the Congress which if passed would allow duty free export of US products from certain parts of Pakistan to the US.

more @zeenews.com

7. India to reassert authority in Maoist areas

“(Our aim is) to reassert the civil administration to be followed immediately by development in areas dominated by Naxalites (Maoists) for quite some years,” Chidambaram said after a meeting with top officials of Orissa, Maharashtra and Chhattisgarh here. “The meeting was successful. We identified progress we made… We identified steps to be taken,” the minister told reporters. “The (anti-Maoist) operations will continue. Our goal is not to kill anyone but to reassert the civil administration to be followed immediately by development in areas dominated by Naxalites for quite some years,” he said.

…When asked to comment on reports saying the Shibu Soren government in Jharkhand has decided to go slow on anti-Maoist drives, he said: “There is a new government in Jharkhand, the chief minister and other senior officials are coming to Delhi Jan 28 to meet me on the Naxal issue.” Chidambaram said the Indian government had no evidence of Naxals getting external monetary help. “(There is) no evidence of Naxals getting external monetary help though they are getting smuggled arms,” the minister commented when asked about foreign help to Maoists.

more @ sify.com

8. Pak interior minister Malik tells it straight

Islamabad: Pakistani Interior Minister Rehman Malik said India has not provided credible evidence in connection with Mumbai terror attacks despite repeated demands by Islamabad. He made the remarks during a discussion at the Pakistani Senate Thursday, an online news agency reported.

He said terror attacks such as in Mumbai and on Samjhota Express were plotted by India to discredit Pakistan. Malik said Indian citizens were involved in the attack on Samjhota Express and warned that India would be responsible if more such attacks take place in the future.

Meanwhile, a Pakistani academician has urged the government to bar US Defence Secretary Roberts Gates from visiting the country in the future unless he apologizes for his remarks that it was unreasonable to think India would continue to be patient in the face of another terrorist attack. Gates, who made the statement during his recent visit to India, is currently in Pakistan along with a 150-member US delegation. Professor Khurshid Ahmad said the statement was alarming.

source: zeenews.com

9. gates: (convenient) “mistakes” were made by well-intentioned but misguided people. — accidental theory of history.

‘I was in government in the early 1990s, when Russia left the region and the United States largely abandoned Afghanistan and cut off defence ties with Pakistan - a grave strategic mistake driven by some well-intentioned but short-sighted US legislative and policy decisions,’ said Mr Gates. Many Pakistanis feel bitterness over what they saw as US abandonment of the region once the Soviet Union withdrew from Afghanistan in 1989. Mr Gates, a former CIA director who served under several presidents, said the move ‘tainted the perception of the United States in Pakistan,’ creating fertile ground for ‘propaganda’ from extremist militants. The US has no plans for military bases and ‘we have no desire to control Pakistan’s nuclear weapons,’ Mr Gates added. — AFP

more @ straits times

10. India poses very helpful question to the WHO. thank you for that question. it gives the WHO a chance to respond fully and “quell the doubts”!

Secretary Health, K.Sujatha Rao urged World Health Organization (WHO) to effectively explain reports appearing in the media that the Swine Flu was a false pandemic. Making an intervention in the Executive Board meeting of WHO currently going on in Geneva, Secretary Health pointed out that such news reports were adversely impacting upon the public health measures being undertaken by countries- She also called for greater transparency about terms and conditions on which international vaccine manufacturers were supplying vaccines to countries, In response to this intervention by India, it was agreed that WHO would formally write to National Focal Points in all countries clarifying the factual position about the H1N1 pandemic to quell all doubts that had been created.

Commenting upon the report of the WHO on the progress towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals Secretary Health urged WHO to clearly promote generic drugs as a strategy for rational drug use. India emphasised that it is only the WHO that has the credibility to withstand the persuasive power of branded and patent drugs. India urged all countries to promote access to medicines and not to confuse the issue of counterfeits which is an IPR issue with safe and efficacious generic drugs.

http://pib.nic.in/release/release.asp?relid=57124

11. after all, the WHO was a little surprised how badly this flu thing went

Jan 19, 2010 (CIDRAP News) – The H1N1 influenza pandemic brought no “devastating surprises,” but what has surprised public health agencies is the public’s lack of interest in getting vaccinated, Margaret Chan, director-general of the World Health Organization (WHO), said yesterday. Chan, speaking at the opening of the WHO Executive Board’s meeting in Geneva, made the comment in the wake of moves by a number of European countries to reduce their vaccine orders in response to falling public demand for the vaccine.

“Although the virus has not delivered any devastating surprises, we have seen some surprises on other fronts,” Chan said in her prepared remarks. “We anticipated problems in producing enough vaccine fast enough, and this did indeed happen. But we did not anticipate that people would decide not be vaccinated.”…Chan did not refer explicitly to those allegations in her speech. But, given the vast range of health information now available to the public, she said, public health leaders may not have the authority and credibility they once did….

“When the history of this pandemic is written, I believe that the speed of actions taken by governments to protect their populations will earn the highest marks,” she said. Despite heavy burdens on emergency rooms and intensive care units, “nearly all health systems have coped well. Let me pay tribute to all the health care workers who have worked tirelessly to care for patients.”

The close observation of the pandemic will yield “a wealth of new knowledge,” Chan said.

more @ CIDRAP

12. speaking of Switzerland and India, S. Korean president to stress new ties with India. also, to sign a pact on nuclear technology for peaceful purposes! yes. exactly like the stuff Iran wants to do except in this case it will be allowed.

President Lee Myung-bak will take advantage of his seven-day visit to India and Switzerland from Jan. 24 to 30 to seek broader support for his “New Asia Initiative,” which calls for a closer partnership between Korea and its neighbors, officials here said Friday. Lee will deliver an address at the Davos economic forum Thursday to show Korea’s commitment to playing a bridging role between developed and developing countries at the G-20 Seoul Summit in November.In particular, he will stress Korea’s efforts to be a voice for Asian countries on the global stage in charting a roadmap for sustainable economic growth, and addressing pressing issues such as climate change.

..During his visit to India from Sunday to Wednesday, he will focus on strengthening his New Asia Initiative by laying the groundwork for closer economic ties with the rapidly developing economy. At a planned summit between Lee and India’s Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in New Delhi on Monday, they may sign a pact on nuclear technology exchange for peaceful purposes, opening the way for Korean firms to participate in India’s project to build nuclear reactors.

more @ korea times


tough jobs: covering big pharma’s ample ass

Check out this amazing article, whereby big pharma attempts to deflect criticism that it has manipulated governments and international agencies by hyping H1N1. Actually they collaborated. Remember? They did it together they work together all together now.

But if some people are going to be held accountable, well I guess it’s not one big happy family after all.

Note that adjuvants are suddenly an unfamiliar technology.

Analyst: Adjuvanted H1N1 vaccines helped stir Europe’s debate

Jan 15, 2010 (CIDRAP News) – The use of adjuvanted vaccines, an unfamiliar technology, helped spark mistrust that may have contributed to the recent allegations in Europe that pharmaceutical companies manipulated governments and international agencies by hyping the H1N1 pandemic threat, according to a British market analyst who follows infectious disease issues.

Some members of the 47-nation Council of Europe’s Parliamentary Assembly have proposed a resolution charging that pharmaceutical companies, aiming to boost vaccine and drug sales, worked to “alarm” governments about the pandemic and prompt them to waste money on inefficient vaccine strategies and expose people to inadequately tested vaccines.

National and international health officials, along with the World Health Organization, have vigorously denied the allegations, which will come before the council on Jan 26.

Hedwig Kresse, MPhil, MSc, a London-based senior analyst on infectious diseases at the independent market analysis firm Datamonitor, said today the decision to use adjuvanted vaccines might have contributed to the controversy in Europe. She also said that when H1N1 emerged, it was the press and government officials, not pharamaceutical companies, that voiced alarm and pushed for a vaccine.

Off to a bad start
“I think in Europe the entire pandemic vaccine supply situation got off to a bad start because European regulators opted for adjuvanted vaccines, which resulted in a lot of negative publicity across Europe” and reduced the public’s interest in getting vaccinated, Kresse told CIDRAP News.

In the United States, she noted, authorities decided not to use adjuvants (which have never been used in US flu vaccines) and to stick with the standard technologies that have been used in seasonal flu vaccines for many years, she noted. (The US government bought a supply of adjuvants for possible emergency use but has not used them.)

“It wasn’t the same kind of debate as in Europe,” she said. “That led to a bigger acceptance of the vaccine.”

The pandemic H1N1 vaccines approved in Europe are GlaxoSmithKline’s Pandemrix, containing the adjuvant ASO3, and Novartis’s Focetria, which contains the company’s MF59 adjuvant. [SQUALENE - ed.] Also approved in Europe is Baxter’s Celvapan, which contains no adjuvant but is made in cell culture, a newer technology, rather than in eggs.

Kresse noted that one adjuvanted flu vaccine, Novartis’s Fluad, was approved in Europe back in 1997, but it is used only in the elderly.

Since most Europeans were unfamiliar with adjuvanted flu vaccines, “it was a new technology and there was no long-term record regarding reactogenicity,” Kresse said. “And since H1N1 has so far been a clinically mild pandemic, it just didn’t seem logical to a lot of people that you needed this new technology. So a lot of people saw it as an unnecessary risk to take.”

The safety record of the European vaccines has been good so far, Kresse said. She said they cause a slightly higher rate of local reactions, such as pain and itching, and possibly a higher rate of fever, than flu vaccines with no adjuvants. “I’m not aware of any major safety concerns in Europe,” she added.

H5N1 threat set stage for adjuvants
Kresse noted that pandemic vaccine efforts in Europe were predicated on the H5N1 avian flu virus. Vaccine versions of this virus have grown poorly in eggs and have been poorly immunogenic. As a result, she said, the general view has been that adjuvants are needed to make H5N1 vaccines work.

Manufacturers developed mockup vaccines based on H5N1, with adjuvants, with the understanding that when a pandemic emerged, the pandemic virus could replace the H5N1 and the vaccine could gain rapid regulatory approval.

Concerning the charge that vaccine manufacturers hyped the pandemic threat to boost their profits, Kresse said it doesn’t fit her perception of how things evolved.

“I think these questions have to be treated very, very carefully,” she said. “Without a doubt the pharmaceutical companies did benefit from the pandemic. But when I look back, it was more the government and the press” that talked a lot about the threat and pressed for a vaccine. “It was more the pharmaceutical companies being on the receiving end and being asked to deliver it as fast as they possibly could.”

She said it seems unlikely that the current controversy would make drug companies unwilling to produce pandemic vaccines in the future, but she wouldn’t rule out that type of outcome.

“If it really comes to a very nasty public discussion and results in a big loss of reputation for the pharmaceutical companies, then it’s another matter,” she commented. “Then as a company I might calculate very carefully what I’d gain and lose in terms of reputation.”

On the other hand, she said it’s unlikely that companies would completely withdraw from pandemic supply efforts: “There’s a very vital political interest in keeping the sector attractive for pandemic supplies.”

Tommy Thompson defends US vaccine efforts
Also today, former US Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Tommy Thompson added his voice to those defending the pandemic vaccine programs, saying it would be a terrible outcome if critics succeeded in scaring companies away from vaccine development. Thompson served as HHS secretary through President George W. Bush’s first term.

In a telephone interview, Thompson, now a senior partner in the Washington, DC, law firm Akin Gump, said the nation’s preparedness for disease outbreaks has improved and that the progress must be maintained.

“In the past we’ve not been prepared and we haven’t had companies that wanted to be in the vaccine business,” he said. “For the first time in our long history, we’ve got companies that are interested in preparing vaccines for flu. . . . The worst thing in the world would be to say this was contrived and therefore scare away vaccine companies from getting scientists to do research on infectious viruses.”

As for the assertion that the pandemic threat was exaggerated, Thompson said, “The only way to prove our concerns beyond a reasonable doubt is to have a lot of people die, and I don’t know anyone who’s advocating more lethality from flu viruses.”

“You’re always going to have critics, but people in the scientific community believe we’re doing the right thing and I certainly believe that,” he added. “I think it was the right thing to do, to get started down this path, and I’m glad that it continues to be expanded.”

He also commented that while the H1N1 virus is not as lethal as was feared, the pandemic may not be over and the virus could mutate into a more dangerous form.

Stunning remarks.

Selected posts from this long-running saga:

There’s only one word to describe this sort of thing.

Bringing home the bacon.

Novel, as in pulled out of someone’s head or ass or laboratory.

The Trifecta Theory.

Rara Avis.

Bird Flu and the Hegelian Dialectic

“The only way to prove our concerns beyond a reasonable doubt is to have a lot of people die”

1. IPCC officials admit mistake over melting Himalayan glaciers

The UN’s climate science body has admitted that a claim made in its 2007 report - that Himalayan glaciers could melt away by 2035 - was unfounded.

The admission today followed a New Scientist article last week that revealed the source of the claim made in the 2007 report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) was not peer-reviewed scientific literature – but a media interview with a scientist conducted in 1999. Several senior scientists have now said the claim was unrealistic and that the large Himalayan glaciers could not melt in a few decades.

In a statement (pdf), the IPCC said the paragraph “refers to poorly substantiated estimates of rate of recession and date for the disappearance of Himalayan glaciers. In drafting the paragraph in question, the clear and well-established standards of evidence, required by the IPCC procedures, were not applied properly.”

It added: “The IPCC regrets the poor application of well-established IPCC procedures in this instance.” But the statement calls for no action beyond stating a need for absolute adherence to IPCC quality control processes. “We reaffirm our strong commitment to ensuring this level of performance,” the statement said.

more @ guardian

2. also — the decision to use adjuvanted H1N1 vaccines — that didn’t work out so well either — BIG PHARMA TRIES TO COVER ITS BIG PHARMA ASS

Analyst: Adjuvanted H1N1 vaccines helped stir Europe’s debate

Robert Roos * News Editor

Jan 15, 2010 (CIDRAP News) – The use of adjuvanted vaccines, an unfamiliar technology, [????? SINCE WHEN ARE ADJUVANTS AN UNFAMILIAR TECHNOLOGY???? ONLY SINCE PEOPLE CAUGHT ON TO THE DANGER OF ADJUVANTS???? - ED.] helped spark mistrust that may have contributed to the recent allegations in Europe that pharmaceutical companies manipulated governments and international agencies by hyping the H1N1 pandemic threat, according to a British market analyst who follows infectious disease issues.

Some members of the 47-nation Council of Europe’s Parliamentary Assembly have proposed a resolution charging that pharmaceutical companies, aiming to boost vaccine and drug sales, worked to “alarm” governments about the pandemic and prompt them to waste money on inefficient vaccine strategies and expose people to inadequately tested vaccines.

National and international health officials, along with the World Health Organization, have vigorously denied the allegations, which will come before the council on Jan 26.

Hedwig Kresse, MPhil, MSc, a London-based senior analyst on infectious diseases at the independent market analysis firm Datamonitor, said today the decision to use adjuvanted vaccines might have contributed to the controversy in Europe. She also said that when H1N1 emerged, it was the press and government officials, not pharamaceutical companies, that voiced alarm and pushed for a vaccine.

Off to a bad start
“I think in Europe the entire pandemic vaccine supply situation got off to a bad start because European regulators opted for adjuvanted vaccines, which resulted in a lot of negative publicity across Europe” and reduced the public’s interest in getting vaccinated, Kresse told CIDRAP News.

In the United States, she noted, authorities decided not to use adjuvants (which have never been used in US flu vaccines) and to stick with the standard technologies that have been used in seasonal flu vaccines for many years, she noted. (The US government bought a supply of adjuvants for possible emergency use but has not used them.)

“It wasn’t the same kind of debate as in Europe,” she said. “That led to a bigger acceptance of the vaccine.”

The pandemic H1N1 vaccines approved in Europe are GlaxoSmithKline’s Pandemrix, containing the adjuvant ASO3, and Novartis’s Focetria, which contains the company’s MF59 adjuvant. [SQUALENE - ED.] Also approved in Europe is Baxter’s Celvapan, which contains no adjuvant but is made in cell culture, a newer technology, rather than in eggs.

Kresse noted that one adjuvanted flu vaccine, Novartis’s Fluad, was approved in Europe back in 1997, but it is used only in the elderly.

Since most Europeans were unfamiliar with adjuvanted flu vaccines, “it was a new technology and there was no long-term record regarding reactogenicity,” Kresse said. “And since H1N1 has so far been a clinically mild pandemic, it just didn’t seem logical to a lot of people that you needed this new technology. So a lot of people saw it as an unnecessary risk to take.”

The safety record of the European vaccines has been good so far, Kresse said. She said they cause a slightly higher rate of local reactions, such as pain and itching, and possibly a higher rate of fever, than flu vaccines with no adjuvants. “I’m not aware of any major safety concerns in Europe,” she added.

H5N1 threat set stage for adjuvants
Kresse noted that pandemic vaccine efforts in Europe were predicated on the H5N1 avian flu virus. Vaccine versions of this virus have grown poorly in eggs and have been poorly immunogenic. As a result, she said, the general view has been that adjuvants are needed to make H5N1 vaccines work.

Manufacturers developed mockup vaccines based on H5N1, with adjuvants, with the understanding that when a pandemic emerged, the pandemic virus could replace the H5N1 and the vaccine could gain rapid regulatory approval.

Concerning the charge that vaccine manufacturers hyped the pandemic threat to boost their profits, Kresse said it doesn’t fit her perception of how things evolved.

“I think these questions have to be treated very, very carefully,” she said. “Without a doubt the pharmaceutical companies did benefit from the pandemic. But when I look back, it was more the government and the press” that talked a lot about the threat and pressed for a vaccine. “It was more the pharmaceutical companies being on the receiving end and being asked to deliver it as fast as they possibly could.”

She said it seems unlikely that the current controversy would make drug companies unwilling to produce pandemic vaccines in the future, but she wouldn’t rule out that type of outcome.

“If it really comes to a very nasty public discussion and results in a big loss of reputation for the pharmaceutical companies, then it’s another matter,” she commented. “Then as a company I might calculate very carefully what I’d gain and lose in terms of reputation.”

On the other hand, she said it’s unlikely that companies would completely withdraw from pandemic supply efforts: “There’s a very vital political interest in keeping the sector attractive for pandemic supplies.”

Tommy Thompson defends US vaccine efforts
Also today, former US Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Tommy Thompson added his voice to those defending the pandemic vaccine programs, saying it would be a terrible outcome if critics succeeded in scaring companies away from vaccine development. Thompson served as HHS secretary through President George W. Bush’s first term.

In a telephone interview, Thompson, now a senior partner in the Washington, DC, law firm Akin Gump, said the nation’s preparedness for disease outbreaks has improved and that the progress must be maintained.

“In the past we’ve not been prepared and we haven’t had companies that wanted to be in the vaccine business,” he said.For the first time in our long history, we’ve got companies that are interested in preparing vaccines for flu. . . . The worst thing in the world would be to say this was contrived and therefore scare away vaccine companies from getting scientists to do research on infectious viruses.”

As for the assertion that the pandemic threat was exaggerated, Thompson said, “The only way to prove our concerns beyond a reasonable doubt is to have a lot of people die, and I don’t know anyone who’s advocating more lethality from flu viruses.”

“You’re always going to have critics, but people in the scientific community believe we’re doing the right thing and I certainly believe that,” he added. “I think it was the right thing to do, to get started down this path, and I’m glad that it continues to be expanded.”

He also commented that while the H1N1 virus is not as lethal as was feared, the pandemic may not be over and the virus could mutate into a more dangerous form.

SOURCE: CIDRAP

3. Glaxo offers free access to potential malaria cures

The chief executive of the world’s second biggest pharmaceutical company will today announce that he is putting into the public domain thousands of potential drugs that might cure malaria.

Andrew Witty, the British boss of Glaxo-SmithKline, will say in a major speech that multinational drug companies have to balance social responsibility alongside the need to make profits for their shareholders. There is, he will say, an “imperative to earn the trust of society, not just by meeting expectations but by exceeding them”.

…”I think they’re just nervous. I don’t think they have crossed … I crossed the bridge a year ago … that you can have a [different] approach to the way you think about intellectual property and openness in an area like neglected tropical diseases. There is no financial market stimulating discovery so we need to find ways to stimulate discovery. This is a way to do it.”

more @ guardian

4. HISTORY OF ADJUVANTS — an “UNFAMILIAR TECHNOLOGY,” — STARTS IN 1891

http://www.google.com/search?q=history+of+adjuvants&hl=en&client=firefox-a&channel=s&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&hs=JJx&sa=G&tbs=tl:1&tbo=u&ei=iBtXS9b-G8Th8QbgxN23Aw&oi=timeline_result&ct=title&resnum=11&ved=0CDsQ5wIwCg

there’s only one word to describe this sort of thing

In the UK, over half of the scientists on SAGE have ties to drug companies. These scientists advise the UK government on the swine flu pandemic.

Many have declared interests in GlaxoSmithKline, the vaccine maker expected to be the biggest beneficiary of the pandemic….Official documents show some members are linked to vaccine manufacturer Baxter and to Roche, which makes Tamiflu….They were not obliged to declare the amounts they earned but they are thought to range from around £500 for a lecture or presentation to more than £100,000 for a directorship of GSK. Some will simply be heads of university research departments which received funding from companies.

Some months back I covered the circular reasoning used to defend one of these scientists, Sir Roy Anderson:

Considering that the Taxpayers’ Alliance makes the charge, it seems that the UK government definitely pays Sir Roy to serve on the Sage task force drawing up action plans for the virus. Even if it’s a token amount, the real lucre comes from driving the government contracts to GlaxoSmithKline.

The Department of Health and GSK denied there was a conflict and said Sir Roy did not attend Sage meetings where vaccines and drugs were discussed. Sir Roy was appointed to Sage to ‘provide cross-government scientific advice regarding the outbreak of swine flu’. He was one of the first UK experts to call the outbreak a pandemic.

So here we see that the Department of Health and GlaxoSmithKline band together to defend Sir Roy on that basis that he sits out the meetings where drugs are discussed. The conclusion the reader shall draw being, presumably, that he has no influence on those decisions. However, in the next breath we learn that he is exceedingly influential. That’s why he’s on the task force in the first place! And in fact, he was one of the first UK experts to promote the outbreak to a pandemic! Later on in the story we learn more of his amazing, deadly influence:

During the 2001 foot and mouth outbreak, Sir Roy’s advice to Tony Blair led to the culling of more than 6 million animals.

Ahh, a powerful man indeed. Theoretically he could stop someone in the hallway after one of these meetings and “advise” them to choose a GSK drug… But listen, he is a man with both scrupulous ethics and impeccable timing!

A spokesman for GSK insisted there was no conflict of interest. ‘Professor Anderson stepped down from the government’s flu advisory group on appointment to GSK. ‘In May, he was asked to rejoin as a temporary member as the scale of the influenza pandemic became evident.

He stepped down from Sage after joining GSK but was asked to rejoin after the scale of the influenza pandemic became evident! And he, of course, as we already learned, was one of the first UK experts to call the outbreak a pandemic, a fact cited to prove his suitability for Sage, which resulting pandemic thereby facilitated his being asked to rejoin Sage. But since he very properly resigned first, it’s all good. See?

But all this logic appears to be very upsetting to the important people at the WHO. They take umbrage at charges that the vaccine manufacturers improperly influenced their decision making process or that they exaggerated the threat of the virus. People who make such scurrilous charges simply misunderstand the planning process.

Keiji Fukuda, MD, special adviser to the WHO director-general on pandemic flu, told reporters at a press briefing that the WHO welcomes constructive criticism, but said charges of a “false pandemic” by a group of European officials led by Dr Wolfgang Wodarg, a German physician who chairs the Council of Europe’s health committee, are “scientifically wrong and historically inaccurate.”

Wodarg and 13 others charged in a proposed resolution that pharmaceutical company pressure on the WHO and member countries have led governments to waste healthcare resources and expose their citizens to insufficiently tested vaccines. The action comes as several European countries are cutting back on their vaccine orders because of weak demand, ebbing flu activity, and the need for just one dose per person.

In a related development, the European Vaccine Manufacturers (EVM), a trade group that represents companies such as GlaxoSmithKline, MedImmune, Novartis, and Sanofi, today in a statement rejected the Wodarg group’s allegations. “EVM believes that the assertions in this motion are unfounded and result from a misunderstanding of the pandemic planning process and the collaboration between public and private sector partners,” the group wrote.

…In its statement today, the EVM pointed out that governments have been working on pandemic preparedness plans for more than a decade and that other public health partners have been encouraged to respond to the risk of a pandemic.

The EVM said governments have asked the pharmaceutical industry to invest in vaccine research and development, conduct clinical studies, modify production facilities to make pandemic vaccine, and expand manufacturing capacity.

See? Governments ASKED them to do all this stuff. What were they going to do, say no? No we don’t want all this work. No thanks. ??? What are you nuts?

No, see, they collaborated. They were all in it together. Governments and big pharma. Together. One big happy family.

The pandemic declaration in the summer of 2009 called for clear action, the group wrote. “This demanded an unprecedented level of collaboration, involving WHO, national governments, health authorities, regulatory agencies, scientists, healthcare professionals, and private sector companies to facilitate a robust response and deliver the appropriate countermeasures.”

BUT!!! Having said that, there was never any conflict of interest, ok? Never. Anyway, from January 25-27 a lot of important people will be at the annual North American Vaccine Forum in Washington DC, where they can be a big happy family together and talk about all the ways to make money developing new vaccines!

Building on the resounding success of the last 7 North American Vaccine Forums, the 2010 event will once again provide a highly valuable meeting place for senior level industry and public sector figures driving the development of novel prophylactic and therapeutic vaccines.

The 3 day conference program will feature a mixture of business, regulatory and scientific topics, with speakers drawn from big pharma/biotech, the regulators and and vaccine developers themselves. Breakout sessions, workshops and panel discussions combine to make the event highly interactive.

In 2010, the Washington Vaccine Forum will once again run concurrently with Phacilitate’s annual Cell & Gene Therapy Forum. Participants will be able to select the conference agenda of greatest current value to themselves and their organization, with all networking opportunities shared between the two events. Breakfast and lunch buffets, extended refreshment breaks and evening receptions will all take place in the shared exhibition area.

“Excellent. The best”

Dr Michael Balady, Acting Deputy Director, Medical Countermeasures, Office of Public Health Emergency Medical Countermeasures, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness & Response (ASPR), US Department of Health & Human Services

A total of 500+ senior level attendees participated in 2009. For more information on how your company can raise it’s profile with both sets of attendees all under one roof and in just three days at the ‘10 event, please click here.

Again, there’s NO conflict of interest. It is NOT the case that these people get together to think up ways to make money off of vaccines. As a matter of fact, the CDC would like to speak to you about FRAUD and ABUSE regarding the H1N1 vaccines. That’s right. SOME PEOPLE HAVE BEEN TAKING ADVANTAGE OF THE SITUATION. http://www.cdc.gov/h1n1flu/vaccination/h1n1_fraud_abuse.htm

  • Charging for the 2009 H1N1 monovalent influenza vaccine
    Note: 2009 H1N1 influenza vaccine doses are provided at no cost to providers by the Federal government. Patients may not be charged for the vaccine or ancillary supplies. However, administration fees may be charged.
  • Requesting an out-of-pocket fee directly from the patient that is above the maximum regional Medicare allowable charge.
  • Selling 2009 H1N1 influenza vaccine or ancillary supplies provided by the Federal government
  • Counterfeit vaccines
  • Adulteration of vaccine
  • Theft of vaccine
  • Consumer fraud
  • Marketing and advertising, often on websites or via the internet, including fraudulent product claims, bogus products, and implied endorsement by federal agencies (including use of federal government agency logos)
  • Diversion, which includes situations where legitimate prescription drugs/vaccines are:
    1. Entered into illegal channels (i.e., black market, illegal Internet sales, sales without prescription, etc.) and/or
    2. Acquired or obtained by an illegal method (cargo/wholesale/manufacturer/ distributor theft, smuggling into the USA, illegal sale to unauthorized party without prescription, etc.).

Despicable.

Cartoon Poster: Close-up of the short-tempered egotistical Duck known as Daffy.

flu resurges suddenly in Ukraine

1. Recombinomics - Ukraine fatalities jump to 827,. 100,000 new cases in one day

Ukraine Fatalities Jump to 827 - 100K New Cases in One Day
Recombinomics Commentary 13:20
January 6, 2010

3,905,542 Influenza/ARI

225,925 Hospitalized

827 Dead

The above update is from the Ukraine Ministry of Health.  The 24h increases included 22 more deaths and over100,000 new cases.  Much of the activity is in the eastern half of the country, with the biggest increases in cases, 6,563 to 343,583, and deaths 5 to 113 in Donetsk.  However, Kiev had a large increase in cases , 4,945 to 327,003 and deaths, 3 to 40), and there were another 4,355 new cases in the surrounding Kiev oblast (see updated map)..

Media reports have described a deteriorating situation in Donetsk, with severe cases and fatalities in doctors and health care workers.  Yesterday’s report had an increase of 8 fatalities in Donetsk, and today’s total of 113 is well ahead of Lviv, which has 102 fatalities and had been the highest oblast prior to yesterday.

New sequences from Russia, Turkey, and Sweden highlight changes at position 225 and early sequences from Ukraine had D225G or D225N in all fatal cases.  These same changes have now been reported in fatal cases in Russia, which continues to raise concerns that such sequences may become more widespread.

Release of additional sequences from fatal cases in Ukraine, including multiple samples from collections from different tissues would be useful.

source

2. in remarkable coincidence, CDC hopes to prevent repeat of 1958 mortality surge

Jan 7, 2010 (CIDRAP News) – Warning against complacency about H1N1 influenza, Dr. Anne Schuchat of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said she doesn’t want to see a repeat of what happened in 1957-58, when a perception that the pandemic was over was followed by a winter surge of flu- and pneumonia-related deaths.

To prevent that, Schuchat, head of the CDC National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, urged the public to get the vaccine, now widely available. …Schuchat referred to a graph showing that deaths attributed to flu and pneumonia peaked in October of 1957, dropped back to a nearly normal level in December, but then surged again in the winter, peaking in late February. (Accounts of the pandemic say the second mortality peak, strangely, was not accompanied by widespread flu outbreaks.)

“In 1957 they essentially gave the all-clear whistle in that December-January time period,” Schuchat said. “They had vaccine, but they didn’t encourage its use, and they did go on to see that increase in mortality.”

She cautioned that no pandemic is the same as any other, adding, “I do not know that the 1957 story is what we’re looking at today, but I do know that we have vaccine and we don’t have to repeat history.”

“The H1N1 virus is still circulating,” she said. “We have an uncertain future. We want and need to avoid complacency.”

read more @ CIDRAP

what has two thumbs and looks really really bad?

1. DynCorp

2. DynCorp

Stiglitz notes that in 2007 private security guards working for firms like Blackwater and Dyncorp were earning up to $1,222 a day or $445,000 a year. By contrast, an Army sergeant earned $140 to $190 a day in pay and benefits, a total of $51,100 to $69,350 a year.

Since U.S. taxpayers are underwriting private soldiers’ paychecks, where’s the savings? It is money from taxpayer’s pockets that has made these shadow armies great.

3. DynCorp

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan—The American defense contractor DynCorp is suspected of having bribed a personal assistant to the country’s interior minister to get a cache of sophisticated weapons into Pakistan without clearance from Pakistani security authorities.

Mr. Qadir, a personal assistant [P.S.] to Minister of State for Interior Tasnim Qureshi, is currently under arrest with the Federal Investigation Agency. He along with three others is suspected of receiving up to US $ 270,000 as bribe in exchange for issuing licenses to DynCorp that allow the company to use the sophisticated guns anywhere within the territory of Pakistan. The licenses were issued this summer without informing the country’s security agencies responsible for internal security, including the FIA.

Up to US $ 270,000 were paid for 138 pieces of advanced weapons. Investigators have been able to account for only half of those weapons. The rest are believed to be hidden inside the US Embassy compound in Islamabad. The US Embassy won’t say where the remaining weapons have gone. The Embassy insists that DynCorp was hired to protect Embassy and Consulate buildings across the country. But Pakistani investigations and piles of evidence shows other activities that are typical of private US militias hired by US military and intelligence for covert missions.

The US agenda included raising Iraq-style private US militias in the country. This reflects Washington’s strong desire to turn Pakistan into a third theater of war after Iraq and Afghanistan, by force if necessary; a desire that continues even now with President Obama and British prime minister’s blunt threats against Pakistan and cheap attempts to blame Islamabad for what essentially are Am-Brit failures.


There is little doubt that Blackwater operated in Pakistan in some capacity over the past few years but not in the same style as in Iraq. There were no private US militias let loose around Pakistan. But this is happening now. And this assignment has been outsourced to DynCorp. The company came to Pakistan in 2008 under the pretext of protecting US diplomatic interests. But it ended up launching a secret program to recruit retired Pakistani military officers. DynCorp has also been found working on creating some kind of rapid-intervention teams made up of former Pakistani army officers trained by American instructors, who in turn are mostly former US military and intelligence officers.

There are reports that the embassy is planning with some influential officials in the Pakistani government to get the four arrested men in the case out of jail and then smuggle them out of the country, most probably by sea. The three accused know much more than what they have admitted during the interrogations, especially information about the network of informants and other recruits that the US Embassy and DynCorp have cultivated across Pakistan.

bringing home the bacon

In January 2004, CIDRAP published an article explaining that the CDC decided to conduct research into “the worst fears” of infectious disease experts.

Jan 14, 2004 (CIDRAP News) – One of the worst fears of infectious disease experts is that the H5N1 avian influenza virus now circulating in parts of Asia will combine with a human-adapted flu virus to create a deadly new flu virus that could spread around the world.

That could happen, scientists predict, if someone who is already infected with an ordinary flu virus contracts the avian virus at the same time. The avian virus has already caused at least 48 confirmed human illness cases in Asia, of which 35 have been fatal. The virus has shown little ability to spread from person to person, but the fear is that a hybrid could combine the killing power of the avian virus with the transmissibility of human flu viruses.

Now, rather than waiting to see if nature spawns such a hybrid, US scientists are planning to try to breed one themselves—in the name of preparedness.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will soon launch experiments designed to combine the H5N1 virus and human flu viruses and then see how the resulting hybrids affect animals. The goal is to assess the chances that such a “reassortant” virus will emerge and how dangerous it might be.

CDC officials confirmed the plans for the research as described recently in media reports, particularly in a Canadian Press (CP) story.

Everytime I read that “now rather than waiting…” sentence, it blows my mind. As I wrote back in April:

Is that a Stupid Fucking Idea, or what? Let’s play with matches. Let’s run with scissors. Let’s pour lighter fluid on a blazing fire. Oh wait I know…let’s create in a laboratory a killer mutant virus that nature would probably never generate on its own.

So here we are. They made it and then they spread it, “accidentally” of course.

^^^^^^^

I was looking around at CIDRAP the other day. They have a whole section on bioterrorism — anthrax, plague, smallpox, tularemia, VHF (Ebola-type stuff), and botulism.

Neither anthrax nor botulism make effective bioterrorism agents. But that doesn’t stop the spending or the fear mongering.

I don’t know about tularemia. It may be another hyped-up threat that sucks more money into the R&D machine, but the symptoms sound vaguely familiar:

Pneumonic Tularemia

Organisms enter the lungs either through inhalation of infectious aerosols or through hematogenous spread. The infectious dose by the respiratory route is 10 to 50 organisms (see References: Franz 1997, Saslow 1961).

Once in the lungs, the organisms rapidly enter pulmonary macrophages (within minutes) and begin replicating. The explosive replicative capacity of F tularensis appears to be an important factor in virulence associated with pulmonary infection (see References: Malik 2006). An intense accumulation of inflammatory cells, particularly neutrophils and macrophages, can be seen at sites of bacterial replication. The influx of neutrophils appears to play more of a destructive than protective role in the host response.

The following features have been noted for pneumonic tularemia (see References: Lillie 1937, Stuart 1945, Syrjala 1986):

  • Ulcerative bronchitis and bronchiolitis
  • Hemorrhagic edema with a nonspecific inflammatory response consisting of lymphocytes, plasma cells, and eosinophils (early in the clinical course)
  • Discrete nodules with acute suppurative necrosis of lung parenchyma
  • Alveolar exudates involving mononuclear cells, fibrin, and red blood cells
  • Nodular, segmental, or lobar consolidation
  • Caseous or cavitary lesions (later in the clinical course)
  • Granuloma formation (late in the clinical course)
  • Pleural fibrinous, fibrinocellular, or fibrinocaseous exudation
  • Hilar lymphadenopathy

^^^^^^^

The fact is, these bioterrorist agents keep a lot of people busy. They are profitable. They are useful for manipulating people.

In October 2007, the US government awarded several contracts:

Oct 16, 2007 (CIDRAP News) – The US government recently awarded contracts totaling about $34 million to two companies for development of drugs to treat pneumonic plague, tularemia, and anthrax, three of the diseases terrorists are deemed most likely to try to exploit.

Nanotherapeutics, Inc., based in Alachua, Fla., announced it had received a $20 million contract to develop NanoGENT, an inhaled form of the injectable antibiotic gentamicin, for treating pneumonic plague and tularemia.

PharmAthene, Inc., based in Annapolis, Md., announced last month that it had been awarded a contract worth up to $13.9 million for further development of a human monoclonal antibody called Valortim to be used as an anthrax antitoxin.

The contracts were awarded by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) and the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), both part of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

More spending:

December 2009

Botulinum toxin may cause a neuroparalytic illness that may result in respiratory failure and require prolonged mechanical ventilation. As medical resources needed for supportive care of botulism in a bioterrorist event may quickly overwhelm the local healthcare systems, biodefense research efforts have been directed towards the development of a vaccine to prevent botulism. While human botulism has been caused only by toxin serotypes A, B, and E (rarely serotype F), all seven known immunologically distinct toxin serotypes (A - G) may potentially cause intoxication in humans from a bioterrorist event. A pentavalent (ABCDE) botulinum toxoid (PBT) has been administered as an investigation new drug (IND) to at-risk individuals for nearly 50 years. Due to declining immunogenicity of the PBT, research efforts have been directed at development of both improved (less local reactogenicity) botulinum toxoids and recombinant vaccines as potential vaccine candidates to replace the PBT.

Authors

Janice M. Rusnak

Clinical Research Management, Special Immunizations Program, United States Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases (USAMRIID), Fort Detrick, MD

Leonard A. Smith

Division of Toxicology, USAMRIID, Fort Detrick, MD

Fear mongering: The “overwhelmed hospital” scenario has been duly noted (1) here, (2) here, and (3) here. The corporate media wants the public to worry about such things.

(1) Sun Sentinal 10/19/09: Florida health officials are drawing up guidelines that recommend barring patients with incurable cancer, end-stage multiple sclerosis and other conditions from being admitted to hospitals if the state is overwhelmed by flu cases.

(2) Washington Post 10/24/09: Instead, officials said the action provides greater flexibility for hospitals which may suddenly find themselves confronted with a surge of new patients as the virus sweeps through their communities.

(3) NYT 10/26/09: Federal officials say the possibility that America’s already crowded intensive care units would be overwhelmed in the coming weeks by flu patients is small but they remain vigilant.

^^^^^^^

In the past, people who are paid to know things have claimed not to know them. Then “terrorists” struck. From their position of faux-ignorance, the authorities then expressed “regret.” They are only human, after all, and so they make mistakes. Anyway, who could have imagined blah blah blah…

But should a bioterrorism agent be dispersed, I am here to tell you, there’s no way the authorities can claim ignorance. There are so many authorities in on this you can’t even believe how many.

This is a list of people associated with Landes Bioscience Journals. These journals cover 30 different topics, each one with editorial boards. This list applies to the Human Vaccines journal, one of 30 journals.

Editor-in-Chief for Human Vaccines: Ronald W. Ellis
Senior Vice President & Chief Technology Officer
NasVax Ltd; Ness Ziona, Israel

Associate Editors:
Sujit K. Bhattacharya, National Institute of Cholera and Enteric Diseases; Kolkata, India
Sally Blower, David Geffen School of Medicine, UCLA; Los Angeles, California USA
Joel Bozue, United States Army Medical Research Institute for Infectious Diseases, Fort Detrick, Maryland USA
Robert S. Daum, University of Chicago; Chicago, Illinois USA
Heather Davis, Coley Pharmaceutical Group; Kanata, Ontario Canada
John Donnelly, Novartis Vaccines and Diagnostics; Siena, Italy
Robert Edelman, University of Maryland School of Medicine; Baltimore, Maryland USA
John Edmunds, Communicable Disease Surveillance Centre; London, UK
Jean-Louis Excler, International AIDS Vaccine Initiative; Trelex, Switzerland
Ian Feavers, National Institute for Biological Standards and Control; Potters Bar, UK
Ricardo Galler, Instituto de Tecnologia em Imunobiologicos, BioManguinhos; Rio de Janeiro, Brasil
Nathalie Garcon, GlaxoSmithKline Biologicals; Rixensart, Belgium
Gregory M. Glenn, Intercell USA Inc.; Gaithersburg, Maryland USA
Michael F. Good, Queensland Institute of Medical Research; Queensland, Australia
Carlos Guzman, Helmholtz Centre for Infection Research; Braunschweig, Germany
Michael G. Hanna, Jr., Intracel; Frederick, Maryland USA
Leonard C. Harrison, Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research; Parkville, Victoria, Australia
Luc Hessel, Sanofi Pasteur MSD; Lyon, France
Genevieve Inchauspe, Transgene; Lyon, France
Mark Kane, Consultant
Helena Kayhty, National Public Health Institute; Helsinki, Finland
Kevin Killeen, Matrivax Corporation; Boston, Massachusetts USA
Keith P. Klugman, Emory University; Atlanta, Georgia USA
Wayne C. Koff, International AIDS Vaccine Institute; New York, New York USA
Reiner Laus, BN ImmunoTherapeutics; Mountain View, California USA
Orin S. Levine, Johns Hopkins School of Public Health; Baltimore, Maryland USA
Philip O. Livington, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center; New York, New York USA
Nils Lycke, Univeristy of Göteborg; Göteborg, Sweden
C. Russ Middaugh, University of Kansas; Lawrence, Kansas USA
Timothy F. Murphy, University at Buffalo, SUNY; Buffalo, New York USA
Mark J. Newman, PaxVax, Inc.; San Diego, California USA
Miguel O’Ryan, University of Chile; Santiago, Chile
Lawrence Paoletti, Harvard Medical School; Boston, Massachusetts USA
Michael Pichichero, University of Rochester Medical Center; Rochester, New York USA
Gerald B. Pier, Harvard Medical School; Boston, Massachusetts USA
Michael W. Russell, University at Buffalo, SUNY; Buffalo, New York USA
Jo Southern, Institute of Child Health; London, UK
Pramod K. Srivastava, Center for Immunotherapy, University of Connecticut; Farmington, Connecticut USA
James Tartaglia, Sanofi Pasteur; Toronto, ON, Canada
Jeffrey Ulmer, Novartis Vaccines; Cambridge, MA USA
Matthias von Herrath, La Jolla Institute for Allergy and Immunology; San Diego, California USA
Brian J. Ward, McGill University; Montreal, QC Canada
Michael Watson, Sanofi-Pasteur; Lyons, France
David B. Weiner, University of Pennsylvania; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania USA
Bruce G. Weniger, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; Atlanta, Georgia USA

Editorial Board:

Sudhir Agrawal, Idera Pharmaceuticals, Inc.; Cambridge, Massachusetts USA
Francis Andre, Atobis S.A.; Brussels, Belgium
Ruth Arnon, Weizmann Institute of Science; Rehovot, Israel
Stephen Black, Kaiser-Permanente; Oakland, California USA
Steven N. Chatfield, Health Protection Agency; London, UK
Robert Chen, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; Atlanta, Georgia USA
Ron Dagan, Ben-Gurion University; Beer-Sheva, Israel
Angus G. Dalgleish, St. George’s Hospital Medical School; London, UK
Anne De Groot, EpiVax, Inc.; Providence Rhode Island USA
R. Gordon Douglas, Consultant; Niantic, Connecticut USA
Kathryn Edwards, Vanderbilt University; Nashville, Tennessee USA
José Esparza, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation; Seattle, Washington USA
Ian Frazer, University of Queensland; Queensland, Australia
Lance K. Gordon, ImmunoBiologics Corp.
Jaap Goudsmit, Crucell; Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Dan Granoff, Oakland Research Institute; Oakland, California USA
Brian Greenwood, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine; London, UK
Marion F. Gruber, Food and Drug Administration; Rockville, Maryland USA
Ian Gust, University of Melbourne; Parkville, Victoria, Australia
Scott A. Halperin, Dalhousie University; Halifax, NS, Canada
Karl Erik Hellstrom, Harborview Medical Center; Seattle, Washington USA
David Kaslow, Merck Research Laboratories, West Point, Pennsylvania USA
Myron M. Levine, University of Maryland School of Medicine; Baltimore, Maryland USA
Alf Lindberg, Nobel Foundation; Stockholm, Sweden
Philip Minor, National Institute of Biological Standards and Control; Hertfordshire, UK
Thomas Monath, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers; Harvard, Maryland USA
Paul A. Offit, The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania USA
Stanley A. Plotkin, Sanofi Pasteur; Doylestown, Pennsylvania USA
Regina Rabinovich, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation; Seattle, Washington USA
Philip K. Russell, Albert B. Sabin Vaccine Institute; Potomac, Maryland USA
David Salisbury, UK Department of Health; London, UK
Bing Sun, Chinese Academy of Sciences; Shanghai, China
John Treanor, University of Rochester; Rochester, New York, USA
Howard L. Weiner, Harvard Medical School; Boston, Massachusetts USA

Look at them all! Do you feel reassured knowing that all these smart people are on the human vaccine bandwagon? I see pigs at a trough but that’s just me.

I will just call your attention to one name in particular, Ruth Arnon.

In 2004, BiondVax, an Israeli company, developed a “quantum leap in technology” for influenza vaccines. [link now defunct - ed.] The key players are Isaac Devash, Chairman, Ron Babecoff, Founder and CEO, and Ruth Arnon, Weizmann Institute of Science Professor.

“It’s a quantum leap in technology,” he told ISRAEL21c. “It’s a totally different concept from other vaccinations. What generally happens today is that there are 120 monitoring stations globally that look for new strains of virus around the world. Once it shows up, they identify the surface of the virus and develop a vaccine to combat it.”

“Professor Arnon said ‘I don’t want to play that game’. It’s tedious work identifying new strains of the virus and there are always new ones coming up. She said let’s look conceptually at the virus - beneath the surface - to see if there are particular elements that don’t change. And then let’s make a vaccine out of those parts which are universal in all viruses,” explained Devash.

Well it turns out BiondVax enjoyed tremendous success. The stock price went right through the roof this year.

^^^^^^^

At the end of January, in Washington DC, many of these people will probably attend Phacilitate’s 8th annual North American Vaccine Forum.

Building on the resounding success of the last 7 North American Vaccine Forums, the 2010 event will once again provide a highly valuable meeting place for senior level industry and public sector figures driving the development of novel prophylactic and therapeutic vaccines.

The 3 day conference program will feature a mixture of business, regulatory and scientific topics, with speakers drawn from big pharma/biotech, the regulators and and vaccine developers themselves. Breakout sessions, workshops and panel discussions combine to make the event highly interactive.

In 2010, the Washington Vaccine Forum will once again run concurrently with Phacilitate’s annual Cell & Gene Therapy Forum. Participants will be able to select the conference agenda of greatest current value to themselves and their organization, with all networking opportunities shared between the two events. Breakfast and lunch buffets, extended refreshment breaks and evening receptions will all take place in the shared exhibition area.

“Excellent. The best”

Dr Michael Balady, Acting Deputy Director, Medical Countermeasures, Office of Public Health Emergency Medical Countermeasures, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness & Response (ASPR), US Department of Health & Human Services

A total of 500+ senior level attendees participated in 2009. For more information on how your company can raise it’s profile with both sets of attendees all under one roof and in just three days at the ‘10 event, please click here.

Here’s the advisory board:

The Advisory Board for the Phacilitate Vaccine Forum Washington 2010 is:

Professor Myron Levine, Professor & Director, Center for Vaccine Development, University of Maryland School of Medicine
Dr Seth Berkley, President & CEO, IAVI
Dr Kanwarjit Singh, Senior Program Officer, Policy & Finance, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Dr William Gruber, Vice President, Clinical Research, Wyeth Vaccines
Una S. Ryan, OBE, PhD, President & CEO, Diagnostics For All
Dr Rino Rappuoli, Global Head, Vaccines Research, Novartis Vaccines & Diagnostics
Dr Allan P. Jarvis, Senior Vice President, Corporate Development, sanofi pasteur
Stephen M. Sammut, Senior Fellow, Wharton Health Care Systems & Venture Partner, Burrill & Company
Dr Ronald W. Ellis, Senior Vice President & Chief Technology Officer, NasVax Ltd, Israel & Vice President, R&D, Meytav Technology Incubator, Israel
Dr Heather L. Davis, Executive Director & Ottawa Site Head, Vaccines Research, Pfizer
Dr Steve Chatfield, Director, Centre for Emergency Preparedness & Response, Health Protection Agency

“I have decided to join Phacilitate’s Advisory Board in order to help foster the sharing of scientific, development and commercial information across the field of vaccines and biologics. If we are successful at accomplishing that, we can advance more products to the market in order to foster the improvement of human health. I seek to proceed advise on meeting agendas and invitees that will advance this cause.”
Dr Ronald W. Ellis, Senior Vice President & Chief Technology Officer, NasVax Ltd, Israel & Vice President, R&D, Meytav Technology Incubator, Israel

“I have joined Phacilitate’s Advisory Board in order to help provide a current international forum to discuss the major issues that face the development and commercialization of vaccines today and, wherever possible, to help move such discussions towards workable solutions that will benefit both current and future global immunization programs.”
Dr Allan P. Jarvis, Senior Vice President, Corporate Development, sanofi pasteur

This is all about networking and making money. This entire industry exists to transfer public sector money over to the private sector.

^^^^^^^

And we have our people in the public sector all too willing to help transfer your money while pretending to protect you from terrorists.

The GAO recently completed a report to congressional requesters: Homeland Defense: Planning, Resource and Training Issues Challenge DOD’s Response to Domestic, Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear and High-Yield Explosive Incidents. [pdf]

Bottom line: The DOD is not ready should something happen. Whatever money has been spent, whatever planning has been done, it’s not enough. Control and coordination must be tightened up between the DOD, FEMA, DHS, and local and state governments, or we could be looking at another Katrina-type response, and that would be “regrettable.”

GAO is making recommendations to DOD to improve the link between DOD and other federal plans, match capabilities with requirements, increase readiness, and improve oversight of CCMRF funding and resourcing. DOD agreed or partially agreed with the recommendations and cited ongoing or planned actions to implement them. (page 2)

…DHS is leading a governmentwide effort to develop an Integrated Planning System that would link the plans of all federal agencies involved in incident response, including DOD’s; however, this effort is not yet complete. While much in the way of federal guidance has been developed, to be most effective, policy documents must be operationalized by further detailing roles and responsibilities for each entity that may be involved in responding to high-risk or catastrophic incidents. (page 19)

Pages and pages of more things the DOD needs to do in order to effectively respond to an attack. Spend more money. If something went wrong tomorrow, based on this report, one would expect communications to break down somewhere along the chain, and that would lead to unnecessary civilian casualties no doubt. But in that event this report will be very useful for covering asses, because powerful people can shake their heads regrettably and say yes, we knew there were problems and we were trying to get them corrected, but we just ran out of time. We’re so sorry for your losses. Anyway who could have imagined blah blah blah….

So guess who requested this report?

The Honorable Joseph I. Lieberman Chairman
The Honorable Susan M. Collins Ranking Member Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs United States Senate
The Honorable Adam Smith Chairman
The Honorable Jeff Miller Ranking Member Subcommittee on Terrorism and Unconventional Threats and Capabilities Committee on Armed Services House of Representatives
The Honorable Mac Thornberry House of Representatives

That loathesome creature.

confusing people 101

All your mind-fucks are belong to us.

Worry: The disease spreads rapidly. Nobody disputes this.

Don’t Worry: The rapid spread of the disease gives rise to rumor mongering, finger pointing and conspiracy theories. PFFT. Idiots.

Worry: Post-mortems show black lungs. Hundreds of eye-witness accounts saw low-flying planes spraying unknown substances.

Don’t Worry: “The WHO denies this is anything but *ordinary* swine flu….”

Worry: “…but warns that the situation remains critical.”

IMPORTANT MESSAGE FROM THE WHO — TAKE THE VACCINE: “This is a virus which *everyone* is susceptible to and we don’t know in whom it will cause severe disease and in whom it might just cause mild disease, so *everyone* needs to take a precaution against this disease.” - Gregory Hartl, WHO spokesman

Observation: The government response has come under attack — poor planning, lack of medicine, political posturing.

PERCEPTIVE CITIZEN: “There’s one piece of advice for the government: stop confusing the population.”

Pfft.

Worry: Meanwhile in Western Ukraine whole hospitals are being converted into emergency wards.

Don’t Worry: Authorities say infection rates have stabilized for the moment, despite what the rumor-mongers say. Idiots. And people are behaving as though the threat has receded, hardly anyone is wearing masks.

Worry: But the scope of the problem remains astonishing.

Worry: Officials say that familiarity is breeding complacency.

Worry: And warn that new waves of disease are imminent.

deciding what to pay attention to

Let’s go back to X wars for a minute.

Definition:

Special secret mode of conducting wars. This concept was developed, when it became clear that direct military conflict will inevitably result in nuclear self-destruction. Then the idea appeared that the battle can be conducted while pretending that the conditions of peace are being maintained. In fact, the war is going on, but by the other, “quiet” means. They include the methods of economic and financial diversions, information-psychological technologies aimed at degrading the social structure of the attacked people. Biological diversions infected cattle or agricultural plants or even people, not by some disease causing death, but by an infection planting panic and confusion within the society. Certainly, technical devices causing accidents not only to planes, but to power systems might be created. [soon? - ed.] During the period of “Cold War” much money was invested into the development of the X-war methods and technologies.

So in lieu of nuclear war, the elites have elected to pursue war on human beings by other, “quiet” means, which have been ongoing for some time.

That could mean that war with Iran will *not* transpire — too messy. However it makes a tremendous distraction, does it not? I don’t want to seem overconfident, as surely the Israelis are a bit of a wild-card. But I do not believe it will actually happen. But I think we will be kept on the edge of our seats, riveted at the possibility, for quite some time.

Notice that the two major stories right now — the shooting at Fort Hood and the Francop weapons cache dovetail very nicely from the Israeli perspective and keep people focused on the narrative of Muslim terrorism directed at Israel. Mordant chuckles escaped from my lips upon reading that the troop killer devout Muslim paranoid anti-war terrorist Hasan was born in America but identified himself as Palestinian. And of course the ‘enemy is within’ idea, the Muslims infiltrating our military (also in Afghanistan with the “rogue” attack on UK troops) and using our good will to attack us from within. I mean seriously, the projection is over the top.

It immediately reminded me of the five dancing Israelis on 9/11.

“We are Israelis. We are not your problem. Your problems are our problems. The Palestinians are your problem.”

Yup, got it. It’s those fucking Palestinians again, running our country into the ground with their control over the financial system and the media and entertainment and politics, destroying us, the enemy within……oh wait….

Wrong Enemy.

Just remember back to 9/11 and how the narrative was set up really quickly, planted like little seeds and then watered and nourished. That’s how these things go.

Meanwhile, not hearing too much in the corporate media about Ukraine, so it’s hard to tell what’s really going on there but wouldn’t you think that if the flu had mutated like they’ve been threatening us it would do and cause a real pandemic that they would be very eager to tell everyone that the killer flu has arrived in Ukraine?

For Some Reason that message doesn’t seem to be getting through, maybe because everyone is so distracted by the Muslim terrorist enemies within. Which could mean that they’ve actually unleashed something truly bad in Ukraine running in parallel to the flu, just to confuse the issue and to allow for “regrets” later, and would prefer that nobody notice for awhile while this gets going and please pay attention to this horrible Muslim terrorism instead please & thanks hang on we got some breaking news about it blah blah blah.

I found this site the other day called Israeli Uncensored News. It’s like the guy writes for The Onion except I think he’s serious.

Jews always have someone to help

Israeli Foreign Ministry will send humanitarian aid to Ukraine which suffers the swine flu pandemics. Israel experiences severe shortage of swine flu vaccine, but will forward significant amount of it to Ukraine.It takes Jewish masochism to help the nation which slaughtered Jews almost to extinction three times in the modern history: under Khmelnitsky, Petlyura, and Nazi collaborators. To this day, wildly anti-Semitic political parties are legal in Ukraine and anti-Semitic literature is sold on every corner.

Oh, well, please… tell us how you really feel.

Given what we know about Baxter, I think this is the thing to watch.

Or, it could be something else entirely totally off the radar screen.

UPDATE: Looking around at Ukraine news sites, they’re pretty cool cucumbers so far. Here’s the official word from the official authorities:

In the Ukraine, the country’s laboratory experts along with WHO experts have so far found no evidence of a worrisome mutation in the pandemic virus isolated from sick patients in the western part of the country. That region has seen dramatically increased virus activity over the past few weeks. However, Fukuda said the virus is still undergoing further characterization at the WHO collaborating center in London.

Today the WHO’s regional office in Europe issued a statement that said a five-member WHO team arrived in the Ukraine’s western Lviv region, where 100,000 people are reportedly sick with flulike illness. The WHO scientists are visiting some of the affected areas, interviewing medical staff, and talking to patients. They will spend several days in Lviv before traveling to other sites.

The Ukrainian health ministry said today it has receive reports of 633,877 acute respiratory illnesses since Oct 29, including 95 pneumonia deaths, the National News Agency of Ukraine reported.

So far 15 cases of pandemic H1N1 flu have been confirmed, and two deaths from the virus have been reported in Kiev, according to a report today from the National Radio Company of Ukraine that quoted the health ministry.

Western Ukraine, Lviv region. I wonder what’s there?