By Yoichi Shimatsu
The ebola pandemic began in late February in the former French colony of Guinea while UN agencies were conducting nationwide vaccine campaigns for three other diseases in rural districts. The simultaneous eruptions of this filovirus virus in widely separated zones strongly suggests that the virulent Zaire ebola strain (ZEBOV) was deliberately introduced to test an antidote in secret trials on unsuspecting humans.
The cross-border escape of ebola into neighboring Sierra Leone and Liberia indicates something went terribly wrong during the illegal clinical trials by a major pharmaceutical company. Through the lens darkly, the release of ebola may well have been an act of biowarfare in the post-colonial struggle to control mineral-rich West Africa
Earlier this year, rural residents eagerly stood in line to receive vaccinations from foreign-funded medical programs. Since the cover-up of the initial outbreak, however, panicked West Africans rural folk are terrified of any treatment from international aid programs for fear of a rumored genocide campaign. The mass hysteria is also fueled in a region traditionally targeted by Western pedophiles by the fact that filovirus survives longer in semen than in other body fluids, a point that resulted in murderous attacks on young men believed to be homosexuals. Ebola detonated fear and loathing, and perhaps that is exactly the intended objective of a destabilization strategy.
This ongoing series of investigative journalism reports on the ebola crisis exposes how West Africans are largely justified in their distrust of the Western aid agencies that unleashed, whether by mistake or deliberate intent, the most virulent virus known to man.
Guilt Without Doubt
A pair of earlier articles by this writer examined the British and American roles in developing ebola into a biological weapon and its antidotes into commercial products. This third essay examines the strange coincidence of the earliest breakout in Guinea with three major vaccine campaigns conducted by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the UN children’s agency UNICEF. At least two of the vaccination programs were implemented by Medicins Sans Frontieres (MSF, or Doctors Without Borders), while some of those vaccines were produced by Sanofi Pasteur, a French pharmaceutical whose major shareholder is the Rothschild Group. This report uncovers the French connection to the African ebola pandemic.
Human Guinea Pigs
The guinea pig used in laboratory testing of new drugs is neither a pig nor from Guinea, since its natural habitat is on another continent, specifically the Andes. The test subjects at the time of the very first ebola outbreaks in Guinea were not rodents or pigs; they were humans.
The mystery at the heart of the ebola outbreak is how the 1995 Zaire (ZEBOV) strain, which originated in Central Africa some 4,000 km to the east in Congolese (Zairean) provinces of Central Africa, managed to suddenly resurface now a decade later in Guinea, West Africa. Since no evidence of ebola infections in transit has been detected at airports, ports or highways, the initial infections must have come from one of either two alternative routes:
– First, the possibility of an anonymous “Patient A”, a survivor of the devastating 1995 Zaire pandemic, perhaps a doctor or medical worker who was a carrier of the dormant virus into Guinea. An example of a Patient A is Patrick Sawyer, the infected American resident of Liberia who first transmitted ebola to Nigeria. No attempt has been made by the national health ministry or international agencies to trace and identify the original ebola case in Guinea. So far, not a shred of evidence has surfaced to indicate&nbs p;the very first victim to be a foreigner or a Guinean who had traveled abroad.
– Second, the absence of a Patient A leaves the prospect of an unauthorized test in humans of a new antidote for ebola in rural Guinea, done under the cover of a vaccination program for another disease. Whether the covert clinical trial’s purpose was civilian health or military use of an antibody-based antidote cannot be determined as of yet.
The reason for suspecting a vaccine campaign rather than an individual carrier is due to the fact that the ebola contagion did not start at a single geographic center and then spread outward along the roads. Instead. simultaneous outbreaks of multiple cases occurred in widely separated parts of rural Guinea, indicating a highly organized effort to infect residents in different locations in the same time-frame.
The ebola outbreak in early March coincided with three separate vaccination campaigns countrywide: a cholera oral vaccine effort by Medicins Sans Frontieres under the WHO; and UNICEF-funded prevention programs against meningitis and polio:
– The MSF-WHO project administered the anti-cholera vaccine Shanchol. The drug producer Shanta Biotechnics in Hyderabad, India, is a wholly owned subsidiary of Sanofi Pasteur based in Lyon, France. Formerly known as Sanofi Aventis, the pharmaceutical controlled by major shareholders L’Oreal and the Rothschild Group.
– The oral polio vaccine (OPV) drive funded by UNICEF was based on a pathogen seed strain developed by Sanofi Pasteur, which operates the world’s largest polio vaccine production facility.
– The meningitis vaccine MenAfrVac, was produced by the Serum Institute of India, owned by tycoon Cyrus Poonawalla, under development funding from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. In 2013, a UNICEF drive in Chad with the same drug resulted in 40 child deaths from vaccine-linked symptom. MSF participated in the West African anti-meningitis project.
Medicins Sanofi Frontieres
While focused on the French role, it would be unjust not to shed light on the American chief of the UN children’s agency. UNICEF executive directory Anthony Lake has an ideal career background for the post of protector of children worldwide. Tony Lake was National Security Advisor to President Bill Clinton responsible for US military interventions, including: the Bosnia-Herzegovina war against the Yugoslav federation; the Battle of Mogadishu in Somalia better known as “Blackhawk Down”; and Operation Uphold Democracy in Haiti. An ardent& nbsp;Zionist convert to Judaism, he is the perfect boss to dispense risky vaccines in Muslim-majority Guinea.
One of Lake’s closest international allies during the Balkans war, who shares his policy of “expansionist democracy” and “humanitarian intervention” is French-Jewish hero Bernard Kouchner. The co-founder of Medicins Sans Frontier, the leftist politician-doctor was appointed Foreign Minister under neoconservative President Nicholas Sarkozy. Before succumbing to the temptation of shouting “Physician heal thyself!”, let’s turn back to tracking ebola.
MSF, which translates into English as Doctors Without Borders, promotes itself as a brave band of selfless physicians who spend their time and own savings on helping the poor in global hot spots. Many of the volunteers, to their individual credit and moral goodness, actually exemplify the public-relations image, never realizing that MSF corporate sponsors include the Bill Gates-founded behemoth Microsoft, Goldman Sachs, AIG, Morgan Stanley, Bank of America, BlackRock, Bloomberg and the French advertising giant Havas.
A rogue’s gallery of corporate predators, if ever there was, the donor list is notably absent of major pharmaceuticals, since it would be a conflict of interest to charitably dispense vaccines from a drug company while being paid for the free advertising. To avoid appearances of ethical impropriety on a global scale, the UN through its agencies WHO and UNICEF foots the bill, the major pharms get the profits, and MSF executives with their horde of bright-eyed volunteers dispense the low-end vaccines on the suffering mass es.
Not to discourage idealist doctors from a worthy cause, there is the undeniable attraction of safari fever and Orientalist exoticism for a surgeon from Pittsburg or Strasbourg to take part in this hybrid of “Amazing Race” and Club Med. Now off with the kid gloves: While posturing as principled ethical “witnesses” to human misery, the functional role of MSF role is as a conveyor belt dumping vaccines from major pharmaceuticals onto low-income and poorly educated populations of the developing world.
Repeated dosages of potent toxins on populations with poor health, which no public-health agency in the Western world dares attempt inside its own borders, can have harmful side effects, especially on children. The casualties of vaccination have gone unreported by the media and buried under official cover-ups. Even worse, vaccine programs could well have been used to conceal human testing of antibodies that originated in biological warfare labs for the purpose of mass murder of entire nations.
Best Laid Plans
Doctors Without Frontiers (MSF), once based in Paris and now in Geneva, comes under a dark cloud of suspicion because its distribution of a two-step anti-cholera vaccine. The dosages must be taken a fortnight apart, and this repeat procedure likely provided the pretext for an ebola-testing team to insert the ebola virus into the victims’ bodies and later return to dispense the antidote of monoclonal antibodies (Mab).
(This is not to say that MSF was knowingly involved as an organization but that its “federation” style of management leaves a lot of maneuvering space for an unethical doctor to infiltrate a country program on behalf a client pharmaceutical.)
After exposure to the ebola virus, a patient shows symptoms of high fever, vomiting and diarrhea, no less than 8 days later and likelier after two weeks. Re-arriving on schedule, the covert drug-testing team administers the anti-ebola antibodies as “the second dose of cholera vaccine”. The perfect crime of illegal human testing should have gone off without a hitch.
A problem arises, however, when many of the test subjects fall sick in less than two weeks and are unable to walk dozens of kilometers to the vaccine centers. With much of the original cohort of human test subjects absent for the antidote, and ebola out of control in the hinterland, the secret clinical trial free-falls toward a pit of liability and legal action. Disappointed operations managers for the sponsoring pharmaceutical order the exfiltration of their medical agents out of Guinea, leaving hundreds of victims to die in excruciating pain as the contagion spreads. Does anyone in Paris or Geneva really care? Don’t choke in laughter.
The Guinea outbreak was not reported by WHO until 6 weeks after the initial round of infections in February, which is quite odd considering the armies of medical workers afield in the countryside during those three vaccine campaigns. By contrast, the MSF office in next-door Senegal knew about the Guinean ebola contagion less than a month after outbreak.
Inside and Outside the Death Zones
On the map of Africa, the Republic of Guinea (not to be confused with Equatorial Guinea on the coast of Central Africa) is shaped like a reversed letter C, looping off the Atlantic shore and curving southeast into the interior. The Niger River cuts across the country from east to west; two separate regions along its banks were the centers of the initial ebola outbreak.
The earliest infections were concentrated in the inland prefectures of Guecedo and Macenta on the interior borders of Sierra Leone and Liberia. The second-most affected region was closer to the Atlantic coast in the districts of Boffa and Telimele and the nearby island-capital of Conakry. The deaths in Conakry were concentrated at Donka Hospital, the prime treatment center.
What is striking about the Red Cross-Red Crescent Society map of the outbreak zones was the lack of infections over a wide swath along the border with Senegal, where MSF keeps its regional headquarters with a 300-member staff, which includes 80 foreigners. The reason can be attributed to the drier climate of Senegal, yet to the contrary ebola infections were reported near Guinea’s northern border with arid Mali, which is in the Sahara Desert.
On first reports of the outbreak, the Pasteur Institute branch in Dakar, Senegal, dispatched a mobile microbiology laboratory to Conakry at the request of the Guinean Ministry of Health. Meanwhile, the German-funded Bernhard-Nocht Institute of Tropical Medicine office in Ghana cooperated with WHO to set up a mobile lab in Gueckedou Prefecture.
MSF staffers inside Guinea cooperated with the government’s Ministry of Health effort to set up isolation rooms in local clinics and hospitals along with blood-sample collection centers. Despite assurances from WHO and CDC that ebola is not transmitted through water or air, more than 100 nurses and doctors, including Sierra Leone’s top ebola expert, have died so far. Misinformation about ebola transmission is inexcusable when the 1995 Zaire outbreak was first spread by the washing of corpses.
Turning Panic Into Profit
Another appalling surprise came in June with the “second wave” of apparently more virulent ebola infections across Sierra Leone, even after the pandemic was coming under control in Guinea. This second breakout could be related to a mutation caused by the introduction of monoclonal antibodies during the covert antidote tests. Confronted by Mab-activated immune responses in humans, the virus could be expected to adapt by increasing the velocity of its docking with unprotected human blood cells. If mutation is confirmed, then all Mab-based&n bsp;serums should be banned due to the potential emergence of the unstoppable “super-virus”, a modified strain of ebola on steroids.
News media have focused on two potential cures for ebola issued by biotech companies ZMapp and Tekmira, both of them essentially business fronts for patent-sharing consortia. Whichever company gains approval from an FDA, ready to overlook the possibility of driving mutations, will be sure to win huge supplier contracts from the WHO and the US Department of Defense.
The dark horse in the foot race to profit from the ebola panic is France-based Sanofi Pasteur. The world’s third-largest pharmaceutical, under CEO Serge Weinberg, has earned a reputation for come-from-behind success in the final rounds of clinical trials in humans. Weinberg scored a coup in wooing his new chief scientist Gary Nabel from his position as head of viral immunology research at the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
The Sanofi strategy for ebola is being kept under wraps by its biotech partner Sutro Biopharma based in San Francisco. Sutro managing director John Freund, MD, is a former Morgan Stanley executive who built its health-care portfolio. The Sutro-Sanofi-Nabel monoclonal antibody (Mab) strategy, using tumor antigen Mabs, is listed for purposes “undisclosed”. The use of antibodies from abnormal or cancerous cells is the same as the cell-fusion method used by their now better-known competitor ZMapp.
For the unethical executive, it is tempting to conduct drug tests in humans without wasting years on monkey trials, as was done by wartime Japan’s Unit 731 and by Dr. Joseph Mengele. In 2008, Sanofi was accused of conducting secret trials of an untested H5N1 vaccine on 350 homeless people in Poland, killing at least 21 and causing the hospitalization of 200 others, according to the Telegraph of London.
The cold-blooded spread of a hemorrhagic fever cannot be attributed solely to corporate greed, since biodefense security is also a motive. The West African outbreak was likely linked to a dual-use experiment, for application in tropical health and as a biowarfare shield, as shown in the two earlier essays in this series.
On the List of Suspects
While a signatory of the Biological Weapons Convention, France did not sign aboard until 1984, providing sufficient time to guise its biowarfare research under civilian lab coats. The nation that produced brilliant scientists like Louis Pasteur, the pioneer discoverer of vaccines, France was one of the leading research centers in biological warfare, weaponizing anthrax, salmonella, chorela and rindepest, toxins that resonate with the French passion for cuisine.
The postwar French military had none of the ability to commandeer Germany’s formidable bioweapons technology, as did Britain, the US and Soviet Union. Instead of focusing on the German passion for “germ” warfare, French medical researchers skipped ahead by concentrating on molecular biology, in which viruses are of intense interest for their interactions with the proteins in cell membranes and nucleic acids. Due to their high-tech sophistication, it is rare for French research centers to be caught red-handed, as happened when the Pasteu r Institute in Iran was discovered to be crafting aflatoxin for the Shah’s military.
French biologists moreover have had deep experience in tropical pathogens from their own African colonies and the Belgian Congo. The nation’s most notable achievement in recent years was Luc Montagnier’s isolation of the HIV, which notably he claims was not of African origin, indicating the Pasteur Institute’s vast library of biological agents.
The French are masters of ambiguity and dissimulation, and so there is no chance for a French military attache to be seen strutting around Guinea or Sierra Leone like a Jean Reno. The CDC in Liberia, in contrast, with its 50-member forward squad marching in protective gear stands out like a sore thumb.
Therefore, don’t forget to put the Elysee Palace on the suspect list if ebola is found out to be a biowarfare attack to destabilize West Africa and redraw the geopolitical boundaries. The French Army is largest foreign force on the continent. To borrow Churchill’s metaphor of nesting dolls, antibodies are a riddle wrapped in the mystery of ebola inside an enigma of biological warfare.
The other Sanofi project in Guinea involving a polio vaccine campaign could have enabled the follow-up work of checking on the success rate of the secret antibody tests. If so, it was a miserable failure or perhaps a wild success. In either case, the pharmaceutical and biotech industries will have profited handsomely from the ebola crisis when biodefense-research generals, high civil servants and UN bureaucrats sheepishly sign multimillion-euro R&D contracts.
After rural West Africans realized that vaccination programs coincided with the outbreak of Zaire ebola, foreign-funded medical staffers were assaulted by angry mobs and an ebola treatment center in Sierra Leone was burned to the ground. When medicine is exposed to be the problem and not a solution, the military has to be called in to quell public rebellion. The boundaries of every country in the region are now sealed by troops, and so the truth behind this epidemic will probably be buried with the victims.
As for MSF, UNICEF, WHO, CDC, NIH, USAMRIID and the rest of the alphabet soup of the hypocritical oafs of pharmaco-witchcraft, the herd instinct for self-preservation prevents any honest disclosure. As each day passes and casualties mount, the onus for the crime weighs heavier. A trustworthy investigation into this fast-spreading pandemic and prosecution of the perpetrators in a court of law have all the chances of snowfall in Zaire.
Yoichi Shimatsu, a Thailand-based science writer, organized public-health seminars by leading microbiologists and herbalists during the SARS outbreak in Hong Kong and the avian influenza crisis across Southeast Asia.