Pages Menu
TwitterRssFacebook
Categories Menu

Posted by on Aug 20, 2017 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

FRANCE: Official list of ‘endocrine disruptors’ published

The list features more than 1 000 insect killer and sanitation products

The French government has published an official list of pesticide products currently in circulation suspected of containing ‘endocrine chemical disruptors’.

The list features more than 1 000 insect killer and sanitation products, including publicly available brands such as Baygon, Raid, and Stop Insectes.

The list publication – from Ecology minister Nicolas Hulot and Agriculture minister Stéphane Travert – comes just weeks after the European Commission (EC) voted on the definition of the chemicals known as ‘endocrine disruptors’ (known in French as perturbateurs endocriniens (PEs)).

The chemicals are said to be found in everything from pesticides to cosmetics, food, and children’s toys, and critics say the chemicals negatively affect the workings of the endocrine system in humans and animals, including the pituitary gland, thyroid, adrenal glands, ovaries, testes, and the pancreas.

They are also said to exacerbate problems such as obesity, cancer, and diabetes.

France was pivotal in helping the EC’s definition vote pass, after the country changed its previous stance against, and decided to support the vote. It had previously agreed with the other opposing countries – Denmark and Sweden – that the definition did not go far enough to protect the environment or the public’s health.

The vote will now enable France to remove affected products from the market, and stop new such products being sold.

However, critics such as the NGO Générations Futures, maintain that the EC’s definition does not go far enough, and is calling on European deputies to vote against the 4 July decision, which it says does not address existing rules on pesticide use.

To date, the NGO’s petition on the subject has attracted over 10 500 signatures.

Source: https://www.connexionfrance.com/French-news/Official-list-of-endocrine-disruptors-published

Please follow and like us:
Read More

Posted by on Jul 12, 2017 in Environment and Health, Uncategorized | 0 comments

Transcript of Press Conference on Vaccines and Autism – Kennedy and De Niro

Press Conference, Robert K. Kennedy, Jr. and Robert De Niro National Press Club, Washington, DC

The press conference can also be viewed through Facebook Live
Press Conference Transcript

Good morning everybody, I’m Sharyl Attkisson.

In just a moment Bobby Kennedy will lead the news conference and afterwards I’ll moderate a short segment of question and answer.

But first we have a brief excerpt, about three to four minutes long, with the former head of NIH, The National Institutes of Health, Dr. Bernadine Healy, who was also a member of The Institute of Medicine.

[Attkisson]

It sounds like you don’t think the hypothesis of a link between vaccines and autism is completely irrational.

[Healy]

When I first heard that there was a link between autism and vaccines I thought well that’s silly. Really, I mean I tended to dismiss it just on the superficial kind of reading, or you know just reading what was in the papers, no offense to the media.

So when I first heard about it I thought, well that doesn’t make sense to me. The more you delve into it if you look at the basic science, if you look at the research that’s been done in animals, if you also look at some of these individual cases, and if you look at the evidence that there is no link, what I come away with is the question has not been answered.

This is the time when we do have the opportunity to understand whether or not there are susceptible children perhaps genetically, perhaps they have a metabolic issue, mitochondrial disorder, immunological issue, that makes them more susceptible to vaccines plural, or to one particular vaccine, or to a component of vaccine, like mercury.

So we now, in these times have to, I think take another look at that hypothesis, not deny it. And I think we have the tools today that we didn’t have 10 years ago, that we didn’t have 20 years ago, to try and tease that out and find out if indeed there is that susceptible group.

[Attkisson]

Why is this important?

[Healy]

A susceptible group does not mean that vaccines aren’t good. What a susceptible group will tell us is that maybe there is a group of individuals, or a group of children, that shouldn’t have a particular vaccine, or shouldn’t have vaccine on the same schedule. I do not believe that if we identified a susceptibility group, if we identified a particular risk factor for vaccines, or if we found out that maybe they should be spread out a little longer, I do not believe that the public would lose faith in vaccines.

I think people understand a polio epidemic. I think they understand a measles epidemic. I think they understand congenital rubella. I think they understand diphtheria. Nobody’s going to turn their back on vaccines, but it is the job of the public health community, and of physicians to be out there and to say yes, we can make it safer because we are able to say this is a subset we’re going to deliver it in a way that we think is safer. So I think the public would respect that.

[Attkisson]

But public health officials have been saying they know. They’ve been implying to the public they know, there’s enough evidence, and it’s not causal.

[Healy]

I think you can’t say that. And part of the, I think, you can’t say that.

[Attkisson]

Do you feel the government was too quick to dismiss out of hand that there was this possibility of a link between vaccines and autism?

[Healy]

I think the government, or certain public health officials in the government are, have been too quick to dismiss the concerns of these families, without studying the population that got sick. I haven’t seen major studies that focus on 300 kids who got autistic symptoms within a period of a few weeks of a vaccine.

I think that the public health officials have been too quick to dismiss the hypothesis as irrational, without sufficient studies of causation. I think that they often have been too quick to dismiss studies in the animal laboratory, either in mice, either in primates, that do show some concerns with regard to certain vaccines and also to the mercury preservative in vaccines.

The government has said in a report by The Institute of Medicine, and by the way I’m a member of The Institute of Medicine, I love The Institute of Medicine, but a report in 2004, it basically said, do not pursue susceptibility groups, don’t look for those patients, those children who may be vulnerable.

I really take issue with that conclusion. The reason why they didn’t want to look for those susceptibility groups was because they’re afraid that if they found them, however big or small they were, that that would scare the public away.

First of all, I think the public is smarter than that. The public values vaccines. But more importantly, I don’t think you should ever turn your back on any scientific hypothesis, because you’re afraid of what it might show.

[Attkisson] Dr. Bernadine Healy.

(audience applauding)

As a reporter this is one of the most remarkable stories I have ever covered, and perhaps the most misreported. It has many of the same ingredients though, as many of the other fascinating stories that I, and other journalists have reported. It involves billions of dollars, allegations of government and corporate and political corruption and alleged coverups.

For today’s news conference I’d like to introduce Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. Chairman of the World Mercury Project and avid environmentalist attorney with a Harvard degree and a masters in environmental law, who has successfully advocated for many environmental causes including helping Riverkeeper lead the fight to restore the Hudson River. Nico LaHood, Bexar County Texas criminal district attorney who reports seeing his son regress into autism, after a vaccination. Robert De Niro, Academy Award winner and father of a child with a neurodevelopmental disorder who regressed after a round of vaccination. Tony Muhammad, student western regional minister, of the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan, and The Nation of Islam. And Del Bigtree, Emmy award winning producer, and producer of the documentary Vaxxed: From Coverup to Catastrophe.

Mr. Kennedy.

[Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.]
Thank you Sharyl.

Though I, I want to thank everybody for coming here today. Thank Bob, and you know all the other speakers.

And this is, we’re going to announce a challenge today, and I want to talk about, about the issue a little, and how I got involved.

I got involved, because as the president of Waterkeeper Alliance, and as attorney for Hudson Riverkeeper and several of the other keeper movements, I was suing power plants, coal-burning power plants principally for emitting mercury, which we were concerned about the impacts on fish. FDA had said at that time that every freshwater fish in America had dangerous levels of mercury in its flesh. And it was coming principally from these power plants. And I was going around the country speaking about this, and almost, many of the times after I’d speak I’d be approached by mothers, by women, they were presentable, they were smart, they were calm, they weren’t hysterical, and they would say to me I, that you need to look, my child was injured by a mercury vaccine.

And if you really consider concerned about mercury exposures to children you need to look at that factor, because that is the largest source of exposure for our children. And I began reading the science, and I’m very comfortable reading science, I’ve had over 500 environmental cases, almost all of them involved a scientific controversy, and I couldn’t have won those cases if I weren’t willing to read science, so I read the science, and I read it intensively. And I was immediately struck by the huge gulf between what CDC and journalists were saying that the science said, and what the science actually said. And what I heard from journalists time and again, and what you hear, it’s like it’s repeated like a mantra, that the link between mercury, that mercury is safe, that the science proves it’s safe, that the link between mercury and vaccines, and neurodevelopmental disorders is non-existent.

So I want to show you here the studies that CDC and journalists, have said for years don’t exist. These are 240 studies that show that, and they’re by the best university scientists, by government scientists, by hospital scientists, all over the world, that say that mercury is neurotoxic, that it’s causing damage to our children, that when you give it to mice, when you give it to rats, when you give it to hamsters, pheasant, goats, cows, that they develop autism-like symptoms, or other neurodevelopmental disorders.

These studies show that mercury is linked to the cascade of pediatric neurological, neurodevelopmental disorders, that began hitting Americans in 1989. The birth cohort, the children who are born in 1989, who are the sickest generation of children in the history of our country. CDC says one out of every six of those children has some kind of neurodevelopmental disorder. 43% of them have a chronic disease. A neurodevelopmental disorder, or a food allergy, asthma, eczema, or juvenile diabetes, or an autoimmune disease. This is not normal. 43% of our children have a chronic disease, that is not normal.

It began in 1989. 1989 is the year that EPA says is the gateway year. That’s the year all of these epidemics began in that year. So, we know this, that genes do not cause epidemics. You need an environmental toxin. So the question that journalists ought to be asking, instead of just parroting what CDC’s safety assurance is, if it’s not the thimerosal in vaccines, then what is it? What is the toxin that touched every American demographic in 1989, from Cubans in Biscayne Bay, Miami, to Inuit in Homer, Alaska. And that affects boys disproportionately to girls. ‘Cause the toxic, that fingerprint for that is mercury.

Mercury impacts boys because testosterone amplifies the neurotoxic effect of the mercury molecule. And estrogen wraps the molecule and protects the female brain. So it’s mainly boys who got injured. And all of these diseases, ADD, ADHD, OCD, speech delay, language delay, misery disorder, all the sleep disorders and seizures, all of these things, and ASD and autism, are impacting boys disproportionately to girls. So you have to match the toxin.

A lot of people say well maybe it’s the glyphosate, from the pesticides, maybe it’s PFOA from flame retardants, maybe it’s ultrasound. There’s a number of hypotheses, they all should be investigated. But none of them has the timing, or the sexual dimorphism that we see that we need to explain, when we look at these disorders. So CDC and journalists for many years have been parroting the assurances that no science exists that actually links mercury to these illnesses.

Here I’m giving you 240 studies. 240 studies that are on PubMed, that make that link. We looked up thimerosal and these impacts on PubMed, and we got every study that we could find, we didn’t cherry pick them, we got all of them. So here are all of the studies that we found that link it to non-autism neurodevelopmental disorders. And other disorders like food allergies.

This pile is 81 studies, and I’ll let you see it, that link thimerosal exposure to autism. And this is the pile of studies that show thimerosal is safe zero, not one, none. None that even pretends to. So why is it that journalists have been telling us that there’s lots of science out there?

Because they’re accepting the word of C, of people at CDC, and CDC has to be, CDC had, you know, there’s four separate federal studies that have painted CDC vaccine division as a cesspool of corruption.

CDC is a vaccine company, it owns 56 vaccines. It sells 4.1 billion dollars of vaccines a year. The people who make decisions in that agency have also financial ties, and the inspector general of HHS found that up to 97% of the people who are making decisions about vaccine policy either own stock in vaccine companies, or are otherwise financially entangled, or maybe financially entangled with the vaccine industry. Oh, and this isn’t me saying it. It’s the inspector general of HHS.

So, as CDC has been telling reporters, for 13 years that there’s studies out there, and no reporter I know, whenever a reporter says to me, buddy, buddy it’s all been proven safe, I say tell me a study. ‘Cause what CDC says is not science. What your doctor says is not science. What NIH says is not science. Science is what appears on PubMed, and is written by research scientists. And that this is science.

But calling CDC and saying is Bobby Kennedy wrong about the science does not prove anything. I can tell you what they’re going to say, yeah he’s wrong.

But you journalists have a duty to do more than that. You have a duty to actually look and see what the science says yourselves. And nobody’s been willing to do this. No matter all of our pleading and begging from this whole community. I’m going to show you over here. Three weeks ago, we put a request on our website for mothers to send us stories that are much like Bob’s story, and much like the story that you’re going to hear from Nico LaHood, that they brought their perfectly healthy child in for a wellness visit, that the child got a series of shots, and some of them probably containing thimerosal, the child spiked a fever that night, 105 degrees, had seizures and within three months was brain dead.

Now, we said we put out just on our website, tell us if you have that story. Within 13 hours we had 6,100 women send us details of their particular story, and that’s what in these books.

This, this is, this is not science. What we’ve been told is not science. It’s more akin to religion, it’s an orthodoxy. That it can’t be challenged, it’s a taboo to talk about it. That anybody who talks about it is a heretic, and has to be harmed or marginalized, or called a anti-vax, and yet you know one of these stories is not science, two of them are not science, it’s anecdote. But 6,100 of them, you know ultimately science is, are case studies, that’s science. And this is 6,100 case studies here.

And you have to ignore, like all orthodoxies, this orthodoxy is anti-science, it’s cruel, it’s sometimes lethal, and it’s misogynistic. It requires anybody who adopts this orthodoxy to say that all of these women who say the know what happened to their child, that these stories have to be dismissed. That these stories are the stories of hysterics. That they’re wrong, that they don’t know what they saw. That we know better than they do, what they saw, and what they saw with their child. And that is misogynistic. And is, you know, and that’s what it takes.

So, what we’re doing, what Bob and I are announcing today, is, and we know that journalists don’t want to look into the science, so we are going to offer a 100,000 dollar reward, it’s called the 100K challenge, to any journalist or anybody else, who can come up with a single, who can point to a single existing study that says that it’s safe to inject mercury into little babies, or pregnant women at the levels that we are currently injecting them in the flu vaccine. And this isn’t a gimmick.

We have gotten some of the greatest scientists in America, independent scientists who are not part of this issue to, and they’re government scientists with extraordinary credentials and prestige, and internationally respected, who have agreed to act as judges in this contest. So that when you send us, and the rules are here, that we’re going to distribute you. When you send us this study that you say proves safety, we then submit it to those scientists, and if you’re right, we’re going to write you a check for a hundred thousand dollars.

You’re not going to be able to do it, the study doesn’t exist. You could not design a study that proved that mercury as safe to inject into kids, any more than you could do with lead. Mercury, and I’m going to tell you this, for many years CDC has been selling this canard to the American public and it’s been swallowed by American journalists, that the reason, you know because CDC is in a jam, ’cause CDC and FDA are telling pregnant women don’t inject, don’t eat tuna fish, or don’t eat other large fish while you’re pregnant, because the mercury content is dangerous, will harm your child. There’s no safe level of mercury.

So people have asked them for years, then why are you allowing or encouraging doctors to inject women, when they’re pregnant, with levels of mercury that are far higher than you can find in a can of tuna.

And CDC has made up an excuse for that, a rationale. What they’ve said is that the methylmercury in fish is less persistent in the body, and more toxic, or more persistent in the body and more toxic, than the ethylmercury in vaccines. So ethylmercury in vaccines will leave your body right away and it is not as poisonous. But CDC’s own scientists last month, published a massive data review and literature review, which proved that to be, that claim to be a hoax. Where CDC is now acknowledging through its own scientists that the, that the ethylmercury in vaccines maybe 50 times as toxic to the brain as the methylmercury in fish, and twice as persistent in the body. And yet that, you know that study that was published, by CDC scientists in a respected publication got zero coverage in the mainstream press.

So, you know, what we’re, we need to break this impasse, and I’m going to, I’m going to finish by talking about this. Democracy requires checks and balances, and government you know, one of the first thing that journalists learn when they go to journalism school is that people in power lie, people in authority lie. And it’s the job of journalists to check them. You can’t just take their word on stuff. Oh, and what we have today in our society, we have an industry you look at the pharmaceutical industry, pharmaceutical industry has paid eight billion dollars out in recent years for pharmaceutical drugs, for lying, for doing off-label marketing, for doing adulteration, for doing all kinds of bad things with their pharmaceuticals. What makes you think that they wouldn’t do the same thing with vaccines? Now, listen to this.

Congress receives more money from the pharmaceutical lobbies there’s more money spent on lobbying by the pharmaceutical industry than any other industry. There are more lobbyists on Capitol Hill from pharma, than there are Congressmen and senators combined. They pay, I’ve always fought the oil and gas industry on Capitol Hill and thought they were omnipotent, but pharma puts in double to lobbying what oil and gas does. They put in four times what defense and aerospace does. And it’s not just the republicans who take the money, which with those other ones it’s mainly republicans, democrats think it’s okay to take pharma money too. So they bought up Congress, they own the regulatory agency,
which has an arm of the industry.

These are the things, these are the institutions that are supposed to be standing between a rapacious industry, and a little child, our little children. So what’s left?

Well, the lawyers are there, right? No, because one of the favors that Congress did for this industry was to pass that VICA, the vaccine compensation act, which says that it’s illegal in this country to sue a vaccine company. So no matter how toxic the agreement, the ingredient, no matter how reckless the line protocols or procedures, no matter how grievous your child is injured you cannot sue them.

So there is no discovery, there’s no document searches, there’s no depositions, there’s no class action suits, there’s no multi-district litigation. They get a free ride.

So what is the last institution left that is still standing between our kids and that industry? It’s the press. And of course the press is going to tell the truth.

But no, for some reason the press has been co-opted. And I don’t think it’s simple as this. That pharma is now the single biggest contributor to network news divisions. Up to 5.4 billion dollars a year. So you look at a network news broadcast these days, and it’s just a vehicle for selling pharmaceutical products. And I was told by the president of one the biggest networks in this country that he was sympathetic with what I was asking which is to go on TV and talk about this issue. He believed I was right, but he could not allow me on his network, because he said, that he would have to fire any host who will have me on.

And it’s not just the mainstream media that’s accepting all this money, but the, you know, the so-called alternate press, which is supposed to be the antidote to corporate control of our media, Salon, Slate, Huff Post, Daily Beast, they won’t run any kind of debate or criticism of this issue there’s something wrong with that in a democracy. That the press, which is the final redoubt for public scrutiny of institutions and industry, has been completely removed from this debate. You cannot go on TV and talk about this. You cannot go into the press. You will be maligned, you will be marginalized as anti-vax, and this week the British Medical Journal, the editors finally had enough, and they put down their foot and they said that word anti-vax is a dirty word. And it’s used to shut people up on a debate that we should be having. And the journalists need to stop doing that, and they need people to start talking about this.

The reason people stop vaccinating is because their child was injured or they’ve lost faith in the program. And without journalistic scrutiny, journalistic scrutiny is required to make sure that this industry and these regulatory agencies serve the public interest.

And if you remove your scrutiny, and your editors tell you you cannot play this story, it’s not making our vaccine program stronger, it’s making it weaker. It’s making it, it’s gutting it out, because we know what happens. We know that this industry, if you suddenly remove scrutiny is not going to come to Jesus and find, you know, that it’s time to start telling the truth. You can’t imagine that that would happen.

So you know, I want to restate, which I say every time I speak that I’m pro-vaccine, but I want safe vaccines. I’m called anti-vaccine in every article written about me. But I’ve never ever made a single statement that could justify that label. Well, I want to get mercury out of the vaccines.

For 33 years I’ve been working to get mercury out of fish. Nobody has ever called me anti-fish. And because I want mercury out of vaccines, I should not be called anti-vaccine. But the reason I’m called that, is because journalists want to make this a binary argument. They want to say either you’re pro-vaccine, or you’re anti-vaccine, there’s nothing in between. There’s nobody like me who is pro-vaccine, but wants safe vaccines, wants to get mercury out, so that our children’s health can be protected. And that’s a rational, and it’s not, it shouldn’t be a radical idea. It should be something that should be getting support from journalists and journalists should be talking about it. But they don’t, so now today we’re offering you a hundred thousand dollars to start talking about this issue honestly.

Now, all of these people came to this issue from, and I wanted to bring up, Bob and I wanted to bring up a cross-section of people here. And but all of these people came to this issue from different perspectives. I came from my work on mercury, in as a litigator, an environmental litigator.

Nico came because he had a child. Two children who were vaccine injured. And he had, like us, we’re all pro-vaccine, but he had children who were vaccine injured. Del Bigtree came as a journalist, who was a producer of The Doctors, who tried to come to this issue and was told no, this is taboo, you cannot talk about it. And he left that, that show in disgust. Tony Muhammad came because he saw autism exploding in his communities, it is the black neighborhoods that are getting the thimerosal vaccines. And it appears to be that African-Americans are much more susceptible to vaccine injury than other Americans. So, but it’s the poor clinics in the urban neighborhoods who are getting these shots. If you’re living in a suburban neighborhood, you have people who are questioning your doctors, and saying I don’t want that. But if you live in a poor, if you’re in a poor clinic, they’re going to take the cheapest vaccines, which are thimerosal vaccines, and your ability to stand up to your doctor, the power to stand up doesn’t exist. So you end up taking them, and those kids are being grievously injured. And Bob De Niro, who came here because of censorship. Again, like Del, because he tried to play a movie that he saw, and there was an uproar, that ultimately he made the decision that it’s too much, it’s going to disrupt the festival and shut it down, but said this censorship is not good for America.
It’s not good for democracy. It’s not good for the public health. So, each one of these gentlemen is going to talk for about three to five minutes, and then we’re going to take Q and A, and I’m going to start with Nico.

[ Nico La Hood]
Well, I think it’s safe to say that you cannot manufacture Bobby’s passion. And like Bobby said we all got to the stage, everybody on this stage got here a different avenue, because we all had different journeys, we have different experiences and we have different opinions a little bit, but let me tell you what we stand for.

We stand here together for our agenda, which is threefold. We’re not here to advocate what we’re against. We’re here truly to advocate what we’re for. And here’s what we advocate for, every one of us on this stage, we are for our children. So since we’re for our children, we’re for your children. That’s a good thing to be for, can I get agreement from everybody?

Number two, we’re for truth. There should not be one person in America, or in this world that not should be pursuant to truth, and should be pursuing truth passionately. So we’re here for truth.

And number three, we’re here for safety.

Children, truth and safety, that is our agenda, and that’s what we stand unified here for.

For my family, I tell people we became an unintended experiment.

As Bobby told you I am the proud daddy of four children. For some reason God trusts me with four of his beautiful children. And our first two children were vaccinated per the schedule. We didn’t know any better, we didn’t question, we just listened, of course you vaccinate. Our first child at six months old, after the six month vaccination she broke out in hives. Tremendous hives, it’s an autoimmune disease, what’s that? She’s allergic to your wife’s breast milk. How ridiculous does that sound? But that was told to us. Everything but it could possibly have been something in the vaccine. We didn’t know to question, so we went forward with the schedule.

Our second child Michael was born. Vaccinated from the first day all children are vaccinated, all the way through the schedule. We saw some signs, but around the sixteenth month vaccines, which is the MMR between the 14 and 18 months, we lost our son.

That’s a fact, I don’t need anyone to tell me about that. You don’t know my kid the way my wife and I do. Our son, and we have the pictures, and we have the video to prove it, don’t take my word for it, was responding to his name, was looking, wonderful eye contact, was smiling, we kept his attention. He went to stimming, he went to losing eye contact, he went to quit responding to his name, and he went blank, immediately after.

Therefore, as a lawyer, I have to think about what happened. What intervening cause happened to our son, that caused this reaction? We didn’t drop him; we didn’t get in a car accident. What was it? When we looked back and no one said the vaccines, we traced it back objectively, not subjectively, objectively to the vaccines. That is our opinion, and we are entitled to that opinion.

As a lawyer, I am trained to follow evidence, and to examine evidence like Bobby is. And furthermore, I am trained and schooled to follow evidence wherever it leads me. You see the representative of the justice system, in all of America, not just in Texas, is Lady Justice. And one of the distinguishing characteristics of Lady Justice is she wears a blindfold.

Why?

Because forget politics, this is not republican or democrat, this is not politics, it’s about people. Forget genders, forget affiliations, forget your faith, forget it all. We are to wear the blindfold like Lady Justice, and follow the evidence wherever it leads us, not where we lead ourselves. So what we’re asking basically, what I’m asking you, as a daddy, that happens to be a lawyer, ’cause I’m a daddy first, is to wear the blindfold with us. Let’s just shelf all of our agendas, let’s ditch all of our opinions and our perceptions, and let’s put on a blindfold for our children, and let us passionately and unbiasedly, pursue truth, and hopefully God willing reach safety. Because our children deserve it. And Del will talk about that, we have to do better for our kids. So, I have a lot more to say, but I’m going to adhere to the three to five minutes, I think I’m already over. Thank you for being here, I really mean that sincerely. I really appreciate your attendance, and God bless you.

(Soft whispering)

[Attkisson]
Bob.

[De Niro]
I’m glad I’m here.

I, I don’t really, I’m here for, because my son is within the autistic spectrum, and went through a, it’s been explained, I think everybody knows the story, so I won’t bore you with it again. I thought what Bobby said was great. It was eloquently said, I couldn’t have said it any better myself I agree with him a hundred percent, thank you.

(Audience applauding)

[Attkisson]
Tony.

Reverend Tony Muhammad.

[Muhammad]
In the name of God, I bear witness there is no God but God. And it’s an honor for me to certainly be here, with this distinguished panel of powerful men, who advocate for truth. I would like to say on behalf of the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan and the grateful Nation of Islam, and on behalf of poor people, those poor people being black, brown, red and white. I have been blessed as of May of last year, after finding out about this study, of a scientist who works for the CDC as we speak. His name is Dr. William Thompson. Who admitted that he lied about a study he did. And it was brought to our attention by Mr. Kennedy, of whom I’m deeply, deeply grateful for him, and not just him, his family and their legacy. Because we’re taught that history is most attractive, and best rewarding in any research. And this has happened to us before. That the Tuskegee Experiment could be back and live and well and it took a Kennedy to shut down that experiment.

Now we have to ask ourselves as a community, could it be that it’s happening to us again? That 240% of black boys are more disproportionately affected by vaccines, when it comes to autism. Our community, the poor community don’t even know what that word means.

I have just finished the first half of a tour that I have been commissioned to go on, by the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan. And I have visited 30 urban cities. And the room are packed with poor people. And when the movie, or the documentary Vaxxed was shown, the screams, the cries from black mothers, who were poor. In St. Louis, Missouri, a black mother fainted after looking at the movie Vaxxed, and it took us minutes to revive her. And she said I knew it was the vaccines, but the doctors bullied me and told me that it was me genetically who gave that to my child. She said I’m crying because I’ve had a hysterectomy, because I refused to have any more children.

Something is wrong. And I just want to say to the press, as a spiritual man, I have to go there. Isaiah in the Bible, chapter 59, he says these words, he says truth has fallen to the streets, and justice stands afar off, and equity cannot enter. And it’s impossible for us to judge while the truth is being hidden. And it is your responsibility as Mr. Kennedy said, you are the last line of defense for truth.

But if you have been compromised then in the minds of the American people we are hemorrhaging because you have to muster up the courage to go behind these lines and vet out the truth for our children, and our children’s safety.

And I’m saying to you, that the black community is waking up in leaps and bounds and as you, the press now, is under attack, show us, show us, that we can trust you. Prove to us that you will leave no stone unturned, because the CDC has admitted that in the 1960s Elijah Muhammad told the members of the nation, do not take the polio vaccine. We are for vaccines, but we are very careful with what vaccines we take. And 30 years later the CDC admitted that the polio vaccine had in it SV40, that caused over 95 million American people to come down with cancer when in the early 60’s cancer was not a black disease. But we’re 12% of the population, and now we lead all category in cancer. So I’m standing here, not as a man who’s just for his people, and I am, don’t get it twisted. We have to speak for poor black, poor brown, poor red and poor white.

But I’m here with this distinguished body of men, that we will give our life for the truth. And so we hope that you the press will do your job, while the American public somewhat trusts you. For when this come out, in truth, the community is going to be upset.

I close to find in the 30 cities I’ve been in, when our community found out that our Congress voted to give the vaccine makers a pass on the very bill that Mr. Kennedy spoke of they was irate. I don’t care what the color is; the American public don’t even realize that Congress passed a bill that the vaccine makers cannot be sued. And if the vaccines are so safe, why have our government using the taxpayers’ money, covering up for a pharmaceutical industry that makes billions in profits, why won’t they stand up? And why won’t they stand behind their own vaccines? Why do we the American people have to pay for the mistake of the vaccine makers? That’s a crime in my opinion, and we must do something about it.

Therefore, I thank you and hope that this will lead you to going behind enemy lines in getting for the American people, truth.

(Audience cheering and clapping)

[Del Bigtree]
We may have to seek them out, and destroy them where they live. That was what came out in a court case against Merck when their product Vioxx was proved to cause heart attacks in over 50,000 people. That lawsuit, that case went behind the scenes into the emails and showed Merck knew that that drug caused heart attacks, and covered it up from the FDA, the American people and the world. And in an internal email they sent out, doctors that questioned the safety of Vioxx, we may have to seek them out, and destroy them where they live. Think about that.

How does a company like that continue to even work in the United States of America? Murdering over 50,000 innocent people. Some say that number could go up into the hundreds of thousands. Put it in perspective, we lost roughly 65,000 people in Vietnam and we marched in the streets. And we have a company that knowingly killed people, and still they work in this country. Better yet, they make most of our childhood vaccines.

We are the press. I worked on the daytime talk show, The Doctors, celebrating the best that medicine had to offer, the best doctors, the best science, the best surgeries, cutting edge techniques. And then I ran into the story of Dr. William Thompson, a whistleblower from the Centers for Disease Control, that laid out how they committed scientific fraud when it came to vaccine safety research. Didn’t just make that claim but backs it up with 10,000 documents including internal emails, spoke to Congressman Bill Posey, handed over those 10,000 documents, was also interviewed by Bill Posey. And Bill Posey stood before the US government, in front of the Congress, said we have a problem. We have one of our top scientists is providing information to me that we are lying to the American public, and that children are in harm’s way. The American people trust us, and he said in closing, please, please I beg you, we must subpoena Mr. William Thompson.

And yet, no newspaper covers that story. No news station covers that story. Nobody cares about a top scientist from the most important health agency in the world coming forward and saying we’ve committed scientific fraud?

What has happened to us? Why am I the only one that leaves a job because I refuse to have television tell me we can’t cover stories about innocent children being ruined and damaged? Stories you’ve heard here today. Respectable, beautiful people, telling their truth. And yet we let the pharmaceutical industry buy our advertising and control what we say.

At the heart, the foundation of media, of press, the same heart, and foundation of science, is one single idea; we must never stop asking questions. If we do, science is dead. If science believes it has the only truth, there will never be another Einstein; there will never be another breakthrough event. And if journalists stop asking the important questions, then there will never be the dream of the United States of America, because Thomas Jefferson said to us if we lose a free press, a press that can challenge the government, can challenge the tyranny of industry, hold their feet to the fire, then we will lose our freedom, and we will lose the United States of America.

They call us the fourth estate, the fourth branch of government, and we report concerned about the branches of government being bought out by industry. Senators and Congressmen that bow down to oil and gas industries or pharmaceutical industries as Bobby Kennedy has pointed out, now the most powerful lobby in Washington. But what about us? What about the fourth branch of government? If we have been bought out, if we cannot go back to our networks and say we must run this story. I don’t care that Merck’s going to follow this story with an ad for a drug and a ridiculous list of ticker-taped side effects and we giggle in our living rooms, who would buy that? We must stop giggling, because we are lying to the public. They believe we have a free press. They believe we are telling the truth. They believe we will cover a story when a top scientist says we have lied to the American people.

Journalists are the first ones to step up when a murderer is on death row and new evidence or a new witness steps forward. We say we must reopen this case; we cannot let an innocent man die, or an innocent woman die.

Well I’ll tell you right now, we have a new witness in Dr. William Thompson. We have new evidence in 10,000 documents that he’s provided, and you have great scientists and lawyers pointing out that it is impossible to say that vaccines are safe, it is impossible because we’ve paid out over 3.3 billion dollars in damages, paid for with taxpayer money, because the pharmaceutical industry has no liability. If we’ve paid out 3.3 billion dollars, how can we say that vaccines are safe? How can we say that vaccines are safe when we have a top scientist still working at the CDC? How can we say that they’re safe when you cannot provide a study that shows that the second most toxic substance on earth, the most toxic non-radioactive substance, has no studies saying that it can be injected into children, and pregnant women, into fetuses?

And we have a rise in childhood illness like we’ve never seen. Autism now at one in 45, up from one in 10,000. Asthma in every classroom. Anaphylactic food allergies, diabetes, eczema, the list goes on and on. That is not the classroom I grew up in. We have got to stop saying our children are so safe because of vaccines, our children are sick. We said it on The Doctors television show. This is the first generation of children that we believe will not live to be as old as their parents.

Isn’t that enough questions for the media? Isn’t that enough questions for science to do what is right? Not a single person up here today is trying to do away with the vaccine program. None of us have ever made anti-vaccine statements. We’ve made statements that we want science to do better. It has injured children of people sitting on this stage, that have stood before you to tell the truth. It has injured hundreds of thousands of parents’ children, telling the same story. Those are the facts.

Now it’s time to begin asking the appropriate questions. When brakes fail on cars, we don’t worry that we’re going to end all driving altogether. We say fix the failing brakes. We are saying fix the failing vaccines. Because no child should be allowed to be injured by anything not by disease or vaccines. And if we’re paying out 3.3 billion dollars in damages, we can do better!

We have cars that are driving down the streets by themselves. Any moment we may put a man on Mars.
And we are going to accept that vaccines have to injure some children? We can do better. And the only way we do is if every person with a pen in this room and everyone standing behind a camera in this room does the job that we studied, that we passionately believe in. That Thomas Jefferson remanded us to. To challenge the systems of government. To challenge the systems of industry. And do our job for the American people. For the children of this world. Please begin doing your job and pressure this industry to have better science. Because safe vaccines for everyone must be a priority. Thank you all for being here today.

(Audience cheering and clapping)

[Kennedy]
I want to, before Sharyl comes up, I just want to clarify something. I told you there’s no safety studies. But there are studies that CDC has created, CDC and industry, there are 19 studies that purport to say that thimerosal does not cause autism. That’s it, and they’re population studies, they’re not clinical, they’re not animal studies, they’re simply population studies, and they’re all very badly flawed. These are those studies. These are the studies that say that CDC studies, including three of these studies written by Dr. Thompson, the three lead studies, who now says that he was ordered by his boss at CDC to destroy evidence, to manipulate the data, to bury the evidence that showed that it was in fact causing illness to black boys, specifically black boys who received the vaccine on time, had a 250% greater chance of getting autism, than black boys who waited. So, and that, and he was told to come in, he and four other scientists were ordered by Frank DeStefano, the vaccine branch chief, to come into a conference room at CDC and dump that data into a garbage can and then they published that study, the DeStefano study, and found no effect. And that study has been cited 110 times on PubMed as the definitive evidence that vaccines don’t cause autism. These are all of those studies; this is the entire universe of their autism study. There’s no safety study that says, you know, it doesn’t poison you, it doesn’t kill you, it doesn’t cause all these other illnesses. These are exclusively autism studies, and it’s all they’ve got.

So and those 19 studies are described here, on these charts, and it goes through why each one of them has, is fraudulent. But even these studies, even these studies, which are CDC’s own studies admit that it causes tics, it causes tics, language delay, it causes mental retardation, it causes lower IQ in girls. So even the studies they use to defend it from autism are admitting it’s causing all these other illnesses. Nobody’s looking at this stuff.

Reporters need to look at this and they need to look at it in detail. Because you know this is what if this got, why did not a single mainstream reporter cover this story? You have a senior scientist at CDC who’s saying that everything’s fraudulent, we caused the autism epidemic.

That’s what he says. He says every time I see a family with an autistic kid I have great shame because we were at fault, that’s a quote. And nobody covered the story. There was just crickets in the American media.

Okay, I’m sorry, Sharyl.

[Attkisson]
No, thank you.

Question, Mike, please wait for a microphone, and then say your affiliation and name please.

[Journalist]
Yeah hi, I’m Sara Reardon from Nature magazine.

I was wondering Mr. Kennedy if you’d had any more discussions with the Trump administration
about starting a vaccine commission?

[Kennedy]
No, I. I got called by the transition team on December 4th, and they asked me, the Trump had they said that the administration wanted to reach out to me, the president wanted to reach out to me, to see if I was willing to chair and populate a commission. And they didn’t, they wanted to make sure that before they made me an official offer that I was willing to accept it. I ended up talking with members of the transition team many times over the next month, and trading documents about what the commission would look like. I was told the president elect would call me over Christmas, he ended up calling me on January 4th.

We talked for 20 minutes on the phone. He asked me to come in on January 10th to talk to him, and I spent an hour talking to him that day. He said he knew many people who admit he thought, and who believed their children had been injured by vaccines and he wanted to make sure we had the safest vaccines, and that we had, you know, we had a, a regulatory process with integrity.

After, and they instructed me at that time, members of the staff to talk to the press about what we had said, which I did. Since then, and then, you know by the time I had, an hour later it had been walked back. I’ve been contacted three times by the administration since then and they tell me that they’re still going forward with a commission. I don’t know what’s going to happen, and I think what happens in the administration now is very obscure to anybody. But you know, all I can say is to tell you what the president told me. He specifically told me that he knew that the pharmaceutical industry was going to cause uproar about this and was going to try to make him back down, and he said I’m not going to back down. They tried during the campaign, and I didn’t back down then, and I’m not going to back down. But I can’t tell you what’s going to happen. All I can tell you is I will be here fighting for this issue whatever happens.

[Journalist]
I’m Josh Major from Annapolis. Thank you for having this forum.

My question really is for Mr. De Niro. Sir, could you please discuss with us what happened when you announced the showing of Vaxxed at Tribeca? Could you discuss the role of the Immunization Action Committee? There was an article in The Guardian, quoting Alison Singer, who had said the Immunization Action Committee sprang into action to suppress the movie. What is the Immunization Action Committee, and what do they do?

[Robert De Niro]
I don’t know what it is. And it, that’s something I never heard. I haven’t heard, I’ll look, I’m curious about that, too. I heard it was filmmakers, some filmmakers, feeling that the film wasn’t worthy in a way. But it must have had more, I, you know.

I’ll look into that.

[Attkisson]
One more quick question.

[Journalist]
Hi, Rob Dew from infowars.com I have a two part question, I guess for each of you. Three hundred fifty organizations led by the American Academy of Pediatrics came out and wrote a letter to Mr. Trump saying they have unequivocal support for the current vaccine industry the way it’s run now. They have total support. What kind of pushback, you know, they haven’t even created a commission yet, what kind of pushback do you expect in trying to lead something like this? And Mr. De Niro is this something you could get behind, a vaccine safety commission, led by President Trump?

[Kennedy]
First of all, I would say this again but, the 350 I think, the AAP was the group that led that effort and got 350 health agencies to sign on. Many, the studies that they cited in there were these studies. And if, and you know I doubt if anybody actually read the studies, or very few of those people. But, the idea, why would anybody not want a vaccine safety commission?

That I think should be the question that everybody should ask. You know, the commission would be, as President Trump envisioned and me, it would be made up of Americans with the highest integrity, people who were household words. People who had not taken any position on this issue. Just to look at the science.

We, you know, we need a debate on this. And for anybody to say that they’re satisfied with the way that the vaccine program works today, where the vaccine program has paid out 3.3 billion dollars to people who admittedly were injured? To say that that can’t be improved on, that that record, that those children are just sacrifices for the greater good? That we can ask Americans to sacrifice their child so that some other child can remain free of measles? Maybe sacrifice them to death? You know, there’s not been a single child in this country that’s died of measles in a decade. But there’s been 69 children who have died from the measles vaccine and been compensated by the government. Is that acceptable? Is that what those 350 organizations think is acceptable? I don’t think so.

You know, if we had a commission we’d look at the science. Science is not subjective, it’s not my opinion. It’s objective. And the people that would staff, that would populate that commission would be people that all of you would know. None of them, particularly not even scientists. But people who just say wait a minute, this is either working or not, or we ought to be doing better.

So, you know, I don’t see why anybody’s scared of safer vaccines. I’m not out to hurt the vaccine program. I want to help it, I just want good science. I’ve been working for good science, for 33 years on every issue. I just, I don’t see how anybody has a legitimate objection having an, another set of eyes on the vaccine program?

[De Niro]
I am only concerned about this. Trump I don’t care about. If he does the right thing, he does the right thing. I don’t have to be connected with him. It’s about this, period.

[Attkisson]
Thank you all, thanks to the audience. Unfortunately we have to be out of the room at, a minute, two minutes ago, so thanks for attending. Thanks for The National Press Club and to the organizers.

Please follow and like us:
Read More

Posted by on Jun 24, 2017 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Phonegate: French Government Data Indicates Cell Phones Expose Consumers To Radiation Levels Higher Than Manufacturers Claim

FROM ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH TRUST (https://ehtrust.org/cell-phone-radiation-scandal-french-government-data-indicates-cell-phones-exposeconsumers-radiation-levels-higher-manufacturers-claim/)

Cell Phone Radiation Scandal: More Exposure Than Manufacturers Claim

“PhoneGate” In France, government data release reveals 9 out of 10 phones tested exceed regulatory limits

Click here to read Spanish translation.

(Washington, DC) Under court order, the National Frequency Agency (ANFR) of France has just disclosed that most cell phones exceed government radiation limits when tested the way they are used, next to the body. Manufacturers are not required to test phones in shirt or pants pockets. French government tests on hundreds of cell phones reveal that in 2015, 9 out of 10 phones exceed the manufacturer’s reported radiation test levels when re-tested in positions where the phone is in contact with the body. The government had refused to disclose these test results until the court order.

Children handed cell phones as toys.

On June 1, 2017, ANFR posted the details of the make, model and test results for each phone that was tested, after months of legal action by French physician Dr. Marc Arazi. Arazi’s request for the information was initially denied. Popular brands such as Apple, Motorola, Samsung and Nokia were among the cell phone models tested. When tested in contact with the body, some phones have test results as high as triple the manufacturer’s previously reported radiation levels.
“As a physician, I am deeply concerned about what this means for our health and especially the health of our children. People have a right to know that when cell phones are tested in ways people commonly use phones – such as in direct contact with their body – the values exceed current regulatory limits. This is a first victory for transparency in this industry scandal,” commented Arazi.

Ricocheting in headlines throughout France, Arazi and his colleagues have coined the situation as “PhoneGate” because of the parallels to “Diesel Gate” – the Volkswagen emissions saga. Devra Davis, PhD, President of Environmental Health Trust explained, “Volkswagen cars passed diesel emission tests when tested in laboratory conditions, but when the cars were driven on real roads, they emitted far more fumes. In the same way, every one of these cell phones ‘passed’ laboratory radiation SAR tests. These phones are legally considered compliant. However, when these phones are tested in the ways that people actually use them in real life, such as in your jeans pocket or bra, the amount of absorbed radiation emissions in our bodies violates the regulatory limits.”

“This is an enormous international scandal. This is not only about France and Europe, as this applies to all persons who use cell phones in every country. If phones were tested in the ways we use them, they would be illegal,” stated Dr. Davis, pointing out that these findings were replicated earlier by a US FCC certified laboratory as part of an investigation by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.  Findings of higher radiation levels than expected (and even higher after phones are fixed) were also documented by the Holon Institute of Technology in Israel and featured on Israeli news.

“Far more concerning is that the regulatory limits do not protect the public from adverse health effects related to long-term exposures,“ Davis commented, pointing to recently published research. A study in the American Journal of Epidemiology found cell phones associated with a doubled risk of glioma, a type of brain cancer. Studies performed by the US National Toxicology Program found glioma and DNA damage increased in rats exposed to long-term cell phone radiation.

“I see children cradling cell phones in their laps as their mothers do grocery shopping. Teenagers are sleeping with cell phones placed on their chest or directly beside their heads all night long. Pregnant women put cell phones and wireless devices on their abdomen. Parents have a right to know that when children use cell phones in these ways, their bodies are absorbing wireless radiation at levels that exceed limits set for adults 20 years ago,” stated Theodora Scarato, Program Director at Environmental Health Trust, referring to how the American Academy of Pediatrics has repeatedly called on the US Government to update cell phone testing to reflect current use patterns. The American Academy of Pediatrics has issued clear recommendations to reduce cell phone radiation exposures to children.

Continue reading this article at https://ehtrust.org/cell-phone-radiation-scandal-french-government-data-indicates-cell-phones-exposeconsumers-radiation-levels-higher-manufacturers-claim/

Please follow and like us:
Read More

Posted by on Jun 21, 2017 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Israel further curtails use of wi-fi in schools

Israel – Policy Recommendations On Cell Phones, Wireless Radiation & Health

2017: Ministry of Education banned personal use of cell phones for teaching and educational staff during teaching hours. Read english translated memorandum.  Read original Memo in Hebrew

Israel – Policy Recommendations On Cell Phones, Wireless Radiation & Health

 

Please follow and like us:
Read More

Posted by on May 25, 2017 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

TIME TO WISE UP ON GMO FOODS

With the intensifying and raging tides issuing from special interest groups determined to ram down genetically-modified organism (GMO) foods down our throat by all means, and equally vociferous warning shrieks from Nigerians opposed to the moves, it’s amazing that many literate Nigerians still consider the matter mainly “academic” or an “activism” issue.  In reality, this is a development that WOULD have serious consequences for a great number of Nigerians.  And since these things are somewhat stochastic in nature, nobody could guarantee that a family member or kinsman, (if not even they themselves) would not end up as part of the unpleasant statistics!

Despite all the efforts in certain quarters to deliberately confuse and confound issues, thus throwing the average Nigerian off the subject-matter, the key issues involved are really very simple to grasp.  No background in molecular biology is needed to appreciate them.  They are basically issues of human health, of food sovereignty, and of preservation of our ecosystem.  None of these is rocket science, and I’ll explain presently.

But we must begin with the purported endorsement of GMO foods in Nigeria by the Nigerian Academy of Science (NAS). When an august body like the NAS pronounces on any matter scientific, it simply cannot be waved aside as uninformed or unpatriotic. Not even when such a pronouncement, as it is in this case, appears to be a direct contradiction of clear pronouncements by other equally competent and revered entities.

As a Professor of Health Physics and Environment, I was particularly interested in the news items, and I promptly went to the website of the NAS to check out the expected official statement and the details of the study on which it was based, so one can follow the scientific methodologies and arguments.

However, there was absolutely nothing of the sort.  Very clearly, the NAS had neither conducted any study on the safety of GMO in foods, on their implications for food sovereignty, and impacts on the ecosystem in Nigeria; neither has the revered Academy issued any statement at all on these critical points.

Apparently, some pro-GMO interest groups had co-sponsored a “Stakeholder’s Roundtable” using the NAS as a cover, and thereafter saddled themselves with disseminating reports on purported outcomes of that meeting through the popular press.  There was no single written line authored by the NAS itself on the subject matter, as is the clear trend reflected on the Academy’s website when it is making official pronouncements on critical national issues (for instance via Reports, Press Releases, Policy Briefs, etc).  In this case however, apart from copious pictures (some of which revealed the Nigerian Agency on Biotechnology Development Agency, NABDA, as “co-hosts” of the event – a fact not mentioned in any write-up); the only mention of this earth-shaking news item on NAS website was an external link to a newspaper report.

If it is the wish of the NAS to make a pronouncement on a burning national issue, why wouldn’t there be an official statement?  Moreover, all the various media reports were obviously syndicated from one or two sources.  A clear case of the hands of Esau, but the voice of Jacob!  It wasn’t surprising therefore to see several of those reports maintain the same screaming headline as the outcome of the NAS Roundtable meeting, but have the body of their reports reflecting different realities.

The news link on the NAS website was somewhat more coherent than other media reports, and we could safely surmise that it has the endorsement of the NAS to some extent. Yet looking at even that report, it is clear that all the headlines were based on personal positions advanced by three speakers. Eminent as these speakers were, their positions can nevertheless by no means be reported as the official position of the NAS.  And even then, the body of the report clearly shows that the speakers were largely offering reasonable counsel to government on the need to be careful and ensure that appropriate safeguards were in place ahead of any formal introduction of commercial GMO into Nigerian market.

Hence while the headline deceptively proclaims “Academy of Science says Nigeria ready for GMO products”, the first speaker mentioned in the report, Prof Oyebodun Longe is to be later quoted as admonishing that “even though adoption of GM technology in Africa may not have met expectations, African nations and Nigeria in particular, must for the sake of science, develop the scientific capacity to embrace GMO technology.”  Furthermore she counselled that: “Nigeria must equip the National Biotechnology Development Agency (NABDA) with the technical know-how to do its work in order to adopt the technology,” for instance, such that the Agency would be able “to check the inflow of GM foods from different entry points into the country and even imports of genetic materials for research purposes.”  Finally, she counselled that “government should rely on scientific research in order to set safety standards for GM foods,” emphasizing that requirements stipulated by the Cartagena Biosafety Protocol (which includes exhaustive locally-conducted risk-assessment) must be applied.

So it is clear that while the good lady was harping more on developing scientific capacity and processes to safeguard Nigeria from the inevitable and indeed ongoing INFLOW of GMOs into the country; the writer, either maliciously or ignorantly, suggests she is calling for Nigeria to begin to officially CULTIVATE GMO foods for the masses consumption.  There is a world of difference between the two!

The contributions of outgoing President of the NAS, Prof Oyewale Tomori, was even more correctly captured by the writer in the body of the inappropriately-headlined article.  The reporter wrote: “Earlier, the NAS President, Prof. Oyewale Tomori, urged government to create an enabling environment that would check that whatever GMO products came into the country were well verified.”  Again, it is clear that this patently sensible call to check GMO products being forced into the country through complicated trade agreements or outright smuggling is a far cry from an endorsement that the country should become the hub to start producing the products.

It was only the third speaker quoted, a Professor of Plant Breeding and Crop Biotechnology, from the University of Calabar who supposedly affirmed that “the country has a mass of trained scientists, enough manpower to go into the product.”  He also supposedly claimed that “A genetic modified product goes through rigorous testing before it is released for consumption” with the suggestion that this rigorous testing has been assuredly concluded.

If only these two statements on GMO foods were correct, then there would obviously be no problem endorsing Nigeria’s “going into the product”.  But the fact is that the statements can be easily falsified and shown to be inapplicable in Nigeria’s setting.

For instance, on the first issue of adequate capacity, a simple question to judge the Professor’s assertion could be asked with respect to the GMO-laced products which the National Biosafety Management Agency, NABMA, has told us are now common on the shelves at our big superstores, such as Shoprite. The question is this: were these products not to carry labels indicating their countries of origin or GMO-status, is there any Nigerian laboratory that would be able to make such confirmation?  We might also ask how many government-funded research centres are there in Nigeria engaging in inter-disciplinary studies on GMOs in Nigeria – independent of the foreign pro-GMOs influences?

The statement on “rigorous testing” and subsequent guaranty of safety is not only manifestly false, it is also quite unfortunate.   And I will dwell more on this.  It is unfortunate if an eminent scientist in the country, eminent enough to speak on the platform of the NAS, would hinge his recommendation that a highly controversial product like GMOs is safe for Nigeria, solely on the premise that some other scientists in some other countries must somehow have done the needful before they would have endorsed the release of the product in their own countries.  Why bother any longer duplicating such efforts in Nigeria!

As a matter of fact, this is the major point endlessly rehashed in the numerous media reports on the much-hyped “NAS Stakeholders’ Roundtable”.  One common line in the syndicated news item was: “the academy’s stance was informed by existing evidence from the industrialised countries, which have carefully followed laid-down principles for such activities. ”

In fact the same Professor of Plant Breeding from the University of Calabar was categorically quoted as affirming: “Before these products are sent into the market, lots of trials and investigations are done by so many agencies, such as the Academy of Sciences Worldwide, United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO), World Health Organisation (WHO), to monitor and make sure they are safe for human consumption and they have recommended.”

In perhaps the original source article reporting the so-called NAS endorsement, Steven Cerier, described as an “international economist” involved in the Genetic Literacy Project  simply wrote: “The Nigerian Academy of Science (NAS) declared this week that genetically-modified foods are safe for consumption. The NAS, citing overwhelming evidence from developed countries and thousands of studies, said the country was ready for the products and that they were safe for production and beneficial to the nation.”  Mr Cerier went further to specifically mention the US National Academy of Sciences and The International Society of African Scientists as respectable authorities whose pronouncements the NAS is supposedly latching on to goad us all into accepting that GMO foods have been scientifically demonstrated as good for us in Nigeria.

Unfortunately for Mr Cerier and all those following his cue in their media reportage, scientific issues are not settled by mere dogmatic pronouncements by individuals or authorities no matter how revered or eminent.  As espoused by Francis Bacon (1561-1626), the scientific method requires clearly defined, repeatable protocols being used to obtain basic data from which appropriate conclusions could be carefully drawn.  None of these is evident here.  Indeed the supposed “citing of overwhelming evidence” by the NAS, confirming safety and benefits of producing GMOs in Nigeria, were apparently observed by Mr Cerier alone.  As Basketmouth would drunkenly say, “….perhaps in his mind!”

The simple question is: what stops the National Biosafety Management Agency from conducting her own studies on the safety of GMO foods, and presenting those results rather than endlessly arrange “stakeholders’” talkshops trying to elicit dogmatic pronouncements on the issue?

It is doubly tragic that even those references by Mr Cerier to “thousands of studies” by relevant bodies in advanced countries were inaccurate.  Yes, there have been dozens of studies in several developed countries on the safety of GMOs, and those studies were the very reason GMOs have been banned in those countries.  At least 19 countries in Europe, including technology giants like Germany, France, Italy, Austria are convinced GMOs have no place in foods and food products.  Indeed a country like Russia (not exactly a technological Lilliput) is so averse to GMOs that it has laws equating people who would bring in GMOs into the country with terrorists bringing biological weapons of mass destruction!

Without any doubt, the hotbed for GMO cultivation is the United States.  But it is on record that in that country the required safety tests have NOT been conducted by official government departments.  Rather the very corporations developing the products were required to conduct the studies and show proof to government that their products are safe. This is hardly reasonable, especially when those results contradict results obtained by independent local authorities in other no less technologically-endowed countries.  Indeed, it is not only on records that the main corporation in question, Monsanto, has a history of false safety claims on her products (which included the deadly Agent Orange, glyphosate PCBs, aspartarme, etc) all vehemently declared safe by the corporation until later evidences proved otherwise.  Even more interesting is the fact that organizations such as Greenpeace International and Friends of the Earth, have repeatedly revealed that Monsanto does NOT allow GMO foods to be served in her own staff canteens!

So what’s the big deal about verifying the toxicity or wholesomeness of a food product?  Shorn of scientific terminologies and details, this is a basic procedure that has been conducted all across cultures and civilization since time immemorial: whenever the integrity of the food served in the plate becomes questionable, feed part of it to some relevant experimental animal and watch the outcome!

The least the NAS, or better still our government agencies, should have done to assure safety of GMOs as food, is to simply commission a study, feeding appropriate doses of the product under discussion to experimental mice/rats under controlled conditions for some 18 months,  and observe the outcomes!  Obviously the biological endpoints to check for here would not just be the acute signs of toxicity, which appear almost immediately the product is consumed.  (If such “fall and die” response existed, obviously there would have been no need for this debate in the first place).  The health issues of interest here are those chronic endpoints including reproductive toxicity (which are not manifested until the subject involved desires to have babies); developmental toxicity and genotoxicity (which only manifest in the subject’s offsprings either whilst still in the womb or much later in life); and some other endpoints which manifest only after a long period of latency, such as cancers or organ damage.  No one can summarily rule any of these out until appropriate studies have been conducted to check them out.

All the countries and authorities that have soundly rejected GM foods on health ground do so because they fed the GM foods to rats and mice and pigs, and observed the outcomes.  According to one report summarizing the incontrovertible outcomes published in several peer-reviewed scientific journals: “Scientific researchers found that 70 percent of female rats and 50 percent of male rats died prematurely when fed GMOs, almost all of them victims of cancer. In all, GMOs have been linked to 22 diseases. According to the American Academy of Environmental Medicine, ‘animal studies indicate serious health risks associated with GM food consumption including infertility, immune dysregulation, accelerated aging, dysregulation of genes associated with cholesterol synthesis, insulin regulation, cell signaling, protein formation, and changes in the liver, kidney, spleen, and gastrointestinal system’.”  These are exactly the basic reasons those countries have locked the door against GM foods.  Not “geo-politics” or “hatred of science,” as Nigerian pro-GMO advocates constantly insinuate.

When an Agency like NABDA for instance continually drums it into our ears that they have been carrying out detailed studies over many years  on GM foods, they talk of field studies to see how the plants grow, thrive etc.  Not health studies, which is the bottom-line here.  The people whose comments are germane here are medical and health practitioners, not botanists, plant breeders, geneticists, etc whose comments currently flood the media as expert pronouncements on desirability of GMOs in our country.

In the documentary Genetic Roulette, several medical practitioners in North America describe the gory sights and diseases they come across in their patients who subsist largely on GMO foods.  These are health outcomes very similar to those seen in laboratory animals that had been chronically fed GMO foods as described above.  And to make the matters even more conclusive (and somewhat cheering), they also describe how in several cases, those adverse health outcomes are reversed when the patients are put off GMO foods.  These are facts which cannot be wished away by dogmas or some authoritative fiat. The documentary is free to download on the internet.

It is instructive to note that, perhaps the toughest part of conducting a safety test on GM foods is getting the authorization or cooperation of the producers/marketers to do so.  Claiming “proprietary rights” and insisting on complicated end-users’ agreement legalities, Monsanto requires that scientists not commissioned by her, cannot carry out any study whatsoever on her GM seeds without due approval.  And it goes without saying that approvals are only given to scientists and authorities deemed sympathetic to GMOs.  In 2009, a group of scientists unable to bear the restrictions any longer, submitted a statement to the US Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) protesting that “as a result of restricted access, no truly independent research can be legally conducted on many critical questions regarding the (bio)tech­nol­ogy.” The problem became so serious and embarrassing that the prestigious New Scientists journal had to weigh-in with an editorial passionately urging that the situation be re-dressed.

However, legally-conducted anti-science activities of Monsanto, only represent the tip of the proverbial iceberg.  Unofficial, extra-legal dirty tactics are very frequently deployed to cage science and scientists, and coerce them into singing the praise of GMOs in food.  There is no space here to go into exhaustive details on people like Dr Kelvin Folta, Professor of Plant Science at the University of Florida who received among other perquisites, twenty-five  thousand dollars from Monsanto, for use as he wished for research and advocacy. In his infamous response now leaked and posted on the internet, Folta gratefully assured Monsanto of “good returns” on this investment, and promised to speak and write in support of any position on GMO as Monsanto would wish.  It turned out that he even did more than that, as in a number of instances, articles and commentaries were simply written and released in Prof Folta’s name by Monsanto’s hired script writers!

On the other hand are the ugly and dirty fights to malign honest scientists who refuse to be cowered by the GMO establishment.  The classical example in this respect was Prof Gilles-Eric Seralini in France.  In one of his compelling studies, Seralini and his team in CRIIGEN, (a research association which focuses on the risks of genetic engineering and pesticides and the development of alternatives) extended Monsanto’s study of the effect of the Roundup-tolerant GM maize on rats from the 90 days Monsanto’s scientists had conducted it so as to obtain permission to release the product, to the reasonable 2 years, expected to be able to study chronic effects.  Using exact protocols, rat strains, etc as Monsanto, Seralini and his colleagues showed conclusively that the GM maize had significantly adverse health impacts (mainly on liver and kidney, in addition to causing tumours) in rats fed the GM NK603 maize!  Prof Seralini was exhaustively maligned, and following extensive crude manipulations, the peer-reviewed and published paper was eventually fraudulently caused to be retracted.  Happily, in the past few months, Seralini has been receiving vindications at the Courts, and all the thick conspiracies against him are being exposed. Readers interested in the details mentioned here should simply google the keywords and see the incredible lengths pro-GMO people go to push their poison on people. I am pretty confident that even in the ongoing battle to safeguard Nigerians and indeed Africa from the onslaught of GMOs, the truth will equally prevail, and very soon too.

As serious as the health implications of GMOs in food are, they are not the only cause for concern.  The mortal threat GMOs constitute for food sovereignty is certainly sufficient ground to reject it entrance into our food system.  I was actually shocked to hear a distinguished speaker at a Scientific Conference I attended in Ibadan last month first confirm the problem, and then immediately wave it aside as a minor issue.  The so-belittled problem is the reality that you need to go back to the multinational company to give you the seed you need every planting season!

This is because, for all their claims that they want to help us attain food sufficiency, these multinational corporations are not charities.  They are set up primarily to make profits and in course of protecting their massive investment in the supposed super seeds, they duly claim “proprietary rights” which forbid the farmer from re-planting seeds from their harvested GM products!  And of a truth, how would they be expected to make profit when all a farmer need do is buy the seeds one time, and thereafter never need go back to procure new seeds?  Unscrupulous farmers might even start their own retail seed businesses! It therefore would appear to be only a reasonable practical requirement that farmers be compelled to come procure new seeds every planting season.

But careful considerations would reveal this as a direct affront to the mind of the almighty Creator who in His magnanimity and genius came up with the incredible seed concept in the first instance.  By definition, seeds are meant to be self-sustaining, and any supposed modern concept that changes this is nothing short of profanity!  Indeed, this cul-de-sac situation is a sufficient philosophical premise to conclude that the whole concept of producing some “wonderseeds” that cannot be generated by natural means (such as hybridization) has already failed the sustainability test.  The analogy here is to the natural Sciences, where concepts or ideas that contradict the second law of thermodynamics are ab initio conscripted to the gabbage bin, or at best reviewed suspiciously for some hidden booby-traps!

Even if you are thinking of “pirating” the products, and somehow outwit the heavily-funded no-nonsense legal departments established by these corporations to enforce compliance worldwide, most of these seeds are so compromised anyway during the process of fiddling with their genes that they come out sterile one way or the other!  Does one require a PhD to recognize the utter folly of deliberately entangling oneself in such a situation?

To worsen matters, GM seeds cannot co-habit peacefully with natural ones.  They end up taking over, driving their natural counterparts into extinction.   Indian Physicist Vandana Shiva lamented how Monsanto came to her country offering the seeds of their genetically-modified Bt-cotton  for 7 rupees per kilogram, only to gradually raise the price to 17,000 rupees, once the farmers got stuck up with the product and the natural variant became scarce!  According to India’s Crime Records Bureau of Statistics, 296,466 farmers in that country committed suicide been 1995 and 2013 largely as a result of their inability to cope with the economic losses that attended their switching to GMO crops. Burkina Faso saw herself being sucked into the same vortex and has quickly retraced her steps to opt out of the same genetically-modified product effective next year.

Yet, all these would appear mild, for it is quite possible that the multinational corporation might choose, at the height of our utter dependence on their products, not just to hike the prices, but even outright refuse to sell to us in the first place!  Just like the Americans have consistently refused us Apache helicopters to fight Boko Haram, for reasons best known to them.

The big problem here is that we are not talking of choppers, cotton, or even cocacola, but basic FOOD.  Nobody can do without food!

Yet another consideration that has made most developed nations to shut their doors to commercial GMOs is the potential impact on the ecosystem.  For instance, “Roundup Ready” maize has been genetically modified to withstand the pesticide Roundup (Glyphosate).  The selling pitch is that all you need do is spray Roundup generously on your farm and the weeds die out, while your maize thrives!  Apart from the adverse health problems associated with the genetic modifications (such as those shown by Prof Seralini as previously mentioned), there is also the problem that Glyphosate has now been declared by the WHO as capable of causing cancer.  Indeed, alternatives are already being sought for it in western countries. Therefore, promoting the widespread use of glyphosate does not sound like a good idea at all.  Better for us to research into more harmless ways of weeding our maize farms – if that is the problem. There is also the realization that the anti-pesticide gene that made the maize to withstand glyphosate could be transferred to bacteria in the guts of people who eat the maize.  This would effectively transmute those bacteria into anti-pesticide factories, and exacerbate the problem of anti-microbial resistance, a veritable sword of Damocles already hanging on mankind!  Needless to add that the same Monsanto which produces Roundup is also the sole owner of Roundup-Ready genetically-modified maize.

For the avoidance of doubts, this article is NOT advocating that Nigeria should shy away from the world of biotechnology.  We are not even suggesting that it is possible to keep GMO foods away from Nigeria.  But we seek to make very clear the gargantuan difference between having some GMO products trickle in into our supermarkets, and being the hub for producing the products!

The situation currently unfolding in the country, culminating in the recent efforts to use the good name of the Nigerian Academy of Science to push acceptance of GMOs in the country very clearly shows the desperate strait the pro-GMO lobby has found itself.  Since March 2015, after years of stalemated discussion, individual nation-states in Europe have won the right to opt out of cultivation of GMO crops, irrespective of the pronouncement of the central government in Brussels on their safety.  Several countries immediately began to declare their opting out.  The list includes Italy, Scotland, Germany, France, Austria, Greece, Poland, Belgium, Bulgaria, Latvia, etc.  At the last count, up to 19 countries, more than half of the countries in the EU, have indicated they are definitely opting out. Similarly in the past fortnight or so in the United States, the Ninth Circuit US Court of Appeals ruled that all US States, counties, and local communities can ban or regulate “the planting of any and all commercially-grown genetically engineered crops,” no matter the claims of federal agencies or  Monsanto.

All these developments portend serious threats to the operations and profits of the Monsantos and Bayers of this world.  Their desperate efforts to open up new market could therefore be better appreciated.  This is why we must not underrate the desperate resolves of these fellows to break new grounds in our country, despite the clear loathsomeness of their project.

Steven Cerier, already referred to as the chief sculptor of the press statement pronouncing that the NAS has endorsed GMO foods and that our Nation has finally embraced the products, concluded his article on this note: “With the largest population and economy in Africa, Nigeria’s embrace of GMOs could be a game-changer in spreading African acceptance of the technology. …..Even if anti-GMO NGOs are successful in scaring other African nations from adopting biotechnology, Nigeria’s new generation of innovative crops will find their way across the continent. The country has very porous borders, and smuggling is rampant. As a result, GE seeds sanctioned for use in Nigeria are likely to be smuggled into neighboring countries…..This might prompt these nations to reconsider their bans on growing GMO crops and eventually lead to broad acceptance throughout the continent.”

From this categorical statement, can anybody then doubt the grand design for getting a new market for GMOs in Africa with Nigeria as the hub?

All we are fed by Nigerian GMO do-or-die pushers, is how warmly South Africa has embraced Monsanto, and how Nigeria cannot afford to be left behind. But it is on public records that Monsanto is only forcing itself down the throat of South Africa much like it is doing here.  There was this particularly cheerful news from South Africa however: unable to bear any further the many hypes, exaggerations, and outright lies in Monsanto’s claims through her radio adverts in South Africa, the African Centre for Biosafety (ACB) headed for the Advertising Standards Authority of South Africa, to lodge formal complaints.

As reported by Monsantomafia.com (14th October, 2015) “The Monsanto ad on Radio 702 basically claimed that their institution knows what’s best for the growing world population. They are the ones who can feed the 8 billion people by 2025 if only South Africans would accept their GMO seeds. Lying straight up, the ad claims that GM crops …..have been “strictly regulated and have been extensively researched and tested for safety.”

The Advertising Standards Authority subsequently investigated the case and ultimately ruled against Monsanto’s false advertisement claims, pulling their radio ad and warning of severe sanctions if such unsubstantiated claims were repeated. Unfortunately in Nigeria, our Biotech regulators have chosen to be the very mouthpiece spewing out and defending Monsanto’s many false claims! This attitude, together with our porous borders, huge populations, and leadership position in Africa, make us the perfect destination an embattled GMO industry seeks to set up her deathly business.

Similarly, little is heard about the fact that the supposed powerhouse of GM in Africa, Burkina Faso is actually fed up with her genetically modified cotton (even though this is not food), and has decided to phase-out the product effective next year.  Yet all these are plain facts that could be easily verified by just a few clicks on the internet.  Pro-GMO lobbyists are obviously counting on the fact that you the average literate Nigerian would be too busy to check up this literally life and death issue!

We must prove them wrong however! Educated Nigerians need to come out of their cosy comfort, check out the issues at stake themselves, and spread the word within their sphere of influence.  It is only by so doing that we can muster the necessary counter-pressure to assist our government resist the severe external pressure being mounted on it by multinational corporations and their powerful political lobbies.  We need, by our showing interest in these matters, to rise to help our government help us.

Much like the positions canvassed by the eminent members of the Nigerian Academy of Science who were obviously set up and desperately quoted out of context, our position in this paper is that Nigeria cannot afford to stay aloof of the field of biotechnology.  We need to be effectively engaged and be able to follow developments in every legitimate field of human endeavour – even if just for the sake of national security and the scientific spin-offs that might somehow accrue. This paper is not even insisting that GMO food and food products produced elsewhere should be banned from our country.  Obviously, we would wish for that to happen, but we realize that with our famed porous borders, this would only be a wil-o-the-wisp.  Besides, once the products are adequately labelled, (as we insist they must be) any Nigerian who wishes to make them his/her staples should be free so to do!

However, Nigerians must be in charge of the entire process; and this can only happen when we have the technology sufficiently demystified, cleared of all wild unsubstantiated claims, taught freely in our universities with pros and cons fully discussed; and researched in designated laboratories by compatriots,  free from the influence of blood-haunting Shylocks from abroad.

The situation currently unfolding in the country is that we have a multinational company, Monsanto Agriculture Nigeria Ltd, already licensed in Nigeria and ready to begin to spin out in Nigeria, seeds genetically-modified with genes from other species, including animals and bacteria, (a process patently forbidden by the laws of nature).  The seeds already developed in America are merely to be widely cultivated and marketed in Nigeria. If this is allowed to happen, it will effectively give licence to Monsanto to turn all of us, including generations yet unborn, into one large scientific experiment.

With all the bumper harvests currently being reported in the country, we have no business bringing GMOs into our food production. It will only limit our options for exporting our products, in fact.  We should refrain from applying dubious solutions to problems that do not exist with us!  We can learn from Israel, an agricultural wonderland which is not only adequately feeding her citizens, but also exporting agricultural products abroad.  Nevertheless, her researchers are on top of developments in bio-technology; but it is all for research and strategic applications, not for feeding the masses.  That looks like a reasonable model Nigeria can emulate.

 

Joshua Ojo (PhD) is professor of Health Physics and Environment at the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife.  He is also the President of the LivingScience Foundation, Ile-Ife.  The Foundation is dedicated to promoting public health in Nigeria, and  has absolutely NO FINANCIAL link  with any Pro- or Anti- GMO concerns.  Contact: Joshua_Ojo@yahoo.com

Please follow and like us:
Read More