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If AIDS doesn't kill you, the AIDS vaccine will
By Cliff Kincaid
Does President Bush want to go down in history as the president who unleashed a biological catastrophe? Thanks to Bill Clinton's legacy, which has been adopted in part by the new administration, America is facing the prospect of a mandatory HIV/AIDS vaccine that could very well backfire and infect millions of people, especially children and the elderly, in the name of protecting them from this deadly disease.
Spending on AIDS is a popular and politically correct cause. Spending on AIDS and an AIDS vaccine is going way up under Bush, just as it did under Clinton. But like the war on cancer, the war on AIDS has stalled. We were promised a cancer cure by the end of the 1970s. But all we really have 30 years later are treatments that in many cases are as bad or worse than the disease.
No final cure for AIDS has been promised. We hear a lot these days about AIDS drugs, whose effectiveness is debated, but little about the prospect that such drugs could produce mutations of the AIDS virus, making the epidemic even worse in the long run. Excessive use of antibiotics has produced drug-resistant strains of bacteria. The same will be true of AIDS drugs and HIV.
When the government announced HIV as the cause of AIDS, they told us we would have an AIDS vaccine by the end of the 1980s. They didn't make that deadline, either. President Clinton announced a crash program to develop an AIDS vaccine by the year 2007. That program may be on track or ahead of schedule. One proposed vaccine is currently undergoing clinical trials.
We are supposed to trust that they will accurately report the results and that any vaccine will be "safe." However, one HIV vaccine maker recently sued the scientists who were testing its product and who reported that it didn't work. The company claimed the adverse publicity would hurt its reputation.
What about our health? Or that of our children? An AIDS vaccine will be used on people without AIDS, supposedly to protect us. Authorities say the AIDS vaccine will be first tried on children, whose immune systems are not fully developed. This is frightening. People with weak immune systems, including children, the elderly and those who are already sick with AIDS, may get even weaker or sicker after exposure to an AIDS vaccine. On the other hand, a healthy immune system exposed to the vaccine may induce AIDS itself. A vaccine may spread the disease to more people.
The government knows this. A study by Dr. Sally Blowers, who supports an AIDS vaccine, concedes that the use of a strain of live HIV in mass-vaccination campaigns "may actually increase death rates from the disease in many countries..."
Nevertheless, the U.S. military says an HIV/AIDS vaccine will be used on our troops as well. Apparently, the anthrax vaccine scandal hasn't been enough of a controversy for the Defense Department. Hundreds of soldiers have left the service in protest and others are facing courts-martial for their resistance to the program. Others have suffered serious health problems, even death.
You may have heard about that scandal. However, Insight magazine disclosed that an experimental AIDS vaccine may also have been used on U.S. military personnel in the Gulf War.
What if an AIDS vaccine backfires? It has happened before. The swine flu vaccine was used on millions of Americans in the mid-1970s before it was quickly withdrawn after causing serious injury and even death.
It was hard to keep up with the scandals of the Clinton Administration, and many people are probably not even aware of the vaccine scandals which took place over the last several years. A hepatitis B vaccine was withdrawn because it contained a toxic substance and a vaccine against diarrhea was withdrawn because it, too, was dangerous to children.
You may also be aware of the rise in autism among children, possibly linked to the MMR vaccine, and the fact that Congressman Dan Burton has held several hearings into this problem.
At the same time, we now know that millions of Americans took polio vaccines contaminated with monkey viruses, and that these viruses may be linked to cancers in adults and children. The government is currently investigating that matter. Don't wait for them to confirm it.
A scandal over an AIDS vaccine could make all of this seem minor by comparison.
That is why my group, America's Survival, has formed a special project, the Committee to Protect Medical Freedom, to oppose a mandatory HIV/AIDS vaccine. We are holding a national conference in Washington on June 20th - about a week before the U.N. holds its own special conference on HIV/AIDS.
For more information, please go to our web site www.protectmedicalfreedom.com We have several dynamic speakers and are determined to make a difference. It may sound overly dramatic. But the future of humanity is literally at stake. Don't leave this debate to the scientists. This is your life, not theirs.
Cliff Kincaid is president of America's Survival, the sponsor of the Committee to Protect Medical Freedom.
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