Topic: Anthrax Vaccine|
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under those cloud-like things
665 posts, Apr 2001
posted 10-16-2001 07:27 AM
The anthrax vaccine scandal
Why did the Pentagon allow BioPort Corp. to remain the sole U.S. supplier of a crucial weapon against bioterror despite years of failure to deliver the vaccine?
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By Laura Rozen
Oct. 13, 2001 | WASHINGTON -- With each new confirmed anthrax infection raising fears of a wider bioterror attack in the U.S., pressure is mounting on the Defense Department and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to give the green light to Michigan-based BioPort Corporation, the nation's lone anthrax-vaccine manufacturer, to ship new lots of the vaccine to the Pentagon.
Anthrax vaccine shipments from BioPort have been suspended by the FDA since 1998 because of questions about the facility's quality control, forcing the Pentagon to dramatically reduce its program to vaccinate all 2.4 million U.S. soldiers and reservists against anthrax. Now the lack of the vaccine threatens to become a scandal, as the U.S. is sending thousands of soldiers overseas, calling up reserves, and as the public is clamoring for access to protection from the deadly bacterium.
After three years of getting bailed out by the Defense Department, BioPort could be poised to make a fortune -- as its CEO Fuad El-Hibri did working with the British seller of anthrax vaccine, Porton International, during the Gulf War a decade ago. But only if the FDA approves the company's renovated plant, as expected, sometime in the next week. The decision could open the door for BioPort to market the drug to a worried public, as new anthrax scares are reported daily.
The story of the troubled U.S. anthrax-vaccine program is a tangled saga of science, politics, private-sector deal-making and national security. There have been persistent questions about the vaccine's safety and effectiveness. Critics say Defense Department studies have never proven the vaccine works against the more dangerous inhaled form of anthrax, only against cutaneous, or skin anthrax. Some military personnel have complained of mysterious illnesses after taking the vaccine, and at least 400 have been disciplined for refusing the mandatory inoculation. But the Pentagon insists the vaccine is both effective and safe. Even now, some researchers say the vaccine is seriously outdated, as BioPort gears up to ship more.
Then there are questions about BioPort's role as the nation's only anthrax vaccine maker. How did Fuad El-Hibri, 43, a German-born entrepreneur and former director of British vaccine-maker Porton Products, come to have so much control over the West's supply of anthrax vaccine? Why didn't the Pentagon turn to a larger, more established drug-maker for the crucial anti-biowarfare weapon? And how could it let BioPort remain the sole maker of the vaccine after it failed repeatedly to gain FDA approval for its renovated facility?
Gee, this 'war' is a good way to make us all go clammoring for one of these 'shots' huh?
under those cloud-like things
665 posts, Apr 2001
posted 01-27-2002 07:28 AM
BioPort Gets FDA Approval -
Forced Anthrax Shots To Resume
By Maj Glenn MacDonald. USAR (Ret) Military
It has to be the ultimate irony.
In the last days of the Clinton Presidency, thanks to media exposure and a near-rebellion in the ranks, the Department of Defense all but suspended its draconian forced Anthrax-shot program, which had destroyed the lives and careers of thousands of men and women in the military.
The brass-hats at the Pentagon were unprepared for the firestorm of criticism from the American public, when they realized that their sons and daughters, husbands and wives, were being made GUINEA PIGS - on pain of court-martial and prison - to an experimental drug.
The fact that service members have died and many more are crippled for life, didn't sit too well with some Americans willing to speak out against this terrible injustice.
That this poorly-planned program was in reality, a money-making $CAM, cooked up by Bill Clinton, his sycophantic Defense Secretary Bill Cohen, and the "corpulent" Admiral William Crowe (retired), made it all the more outrageous.
[For those new to MilitaryCorruption.com who want to follow the "money-trail" and find out WHY Bioport of Lansing, Michigan got a multi-million dollar "sweetheart" contract to produce the "vaccine" just days after Crowe "bought in" to the company, please read GREED AND GUINEA PIGS, elsewhere on this web site.]
With the election of George W. Bush, a man the military overwhelmingly supported, (no wonder Gore's lawyers wanted the Fla. military absentee votes tossed out), some optimistic observers felt it was "only a matter of time" before the hated forced anthrax shot program would be ended, once and for all.
Certainly GW must remember how Crowe, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff under Ronald Reagan and George Bush, had stabbed his father in the back during the 1992 Presidential election.
The governor from Arkansas, who once wrote his draft board back home, how much he "LOATHED" the military, had a big problem with many patriotic members of the armed forces - Republicans, Democrats and Independents.
By "endorsing" the well-known draft-dodger, the much-decorated admiral could give Clinton "credibility" and political "cover" with a key constituency. Unsuspecting soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines voted for Clinton based on Crowe's "say so."
What they didn't know, was the crafty Crowe had "cut a deal" whereby Clinton would appoint him ambassador to Great Britain in exchange for the nominal Republican's timely and critical support.
But this unlikely alliance between the once highly respected admiral and the cunning politician with no military service, had more ominous implications.
FOLLOW THE "MONEY-TRAIL"
By the middle of Clinton's second term, Crowe - no longer ambassador, and now hooked up with mysterious money-man Faud El-Hibri - bought a chunk of what was, an still is, America's only manufacturer of "so-called" Anthrax vaccine.
Bioport was plagued by manufacturing problems and repeatedly shut down by the Food and Drug Administration for "unsanitary conditions."
WHY would Crowe, certainly "nobody's fool," buy in to what looked like a losing proposition? Unless he knew ahead of time, Clinton would dictate through Cohen, that ALL members of the military - active duty, guard, and reserve - MUST submit to the experimental shots.
To make sure dissent was stifled, anyone who objected to the inoculations would be kicked out of the service or sent to prison. After the first few court-martials, (shielded from the civilian news media), word would be passed through the ranks and no one in the military would "dare" refuse the injections.
Or so the scammers thought.
Clinton, Cohen and Crowe didn't count on such tenacious fighters for truth as Air Force Maj. "Sonnie" Bates (www.majorbates.com), the highest-ranking officer at the time to refuse the shots; Capt. John Buck (first military physician to say NO to the forced drugs); retired USAF Col. Redmond Handy, President of NOABUSE (National Organization of Americans Battling Unnecessary Service-member Endangerment); and Air National Guard majors, Tom "Buzz" Rempfer and Russ Dingle.
These brave men, along with Nicholas Regush (NicholasRegush.com), civilian scientists and MilitaryCorruption.com, hammered away at the forced immunizations, both in print and on the broadcast airwaves. And it had a definite impact.
The Pentagon "spin-machine" went into high gear, and word was passed down that "supplies" of the controversial "vaccine" were so low, use would be suspended, except for those service members going to "high-risk" areas.
As usual, why tell the whole truth when a lie or half-truth will suffice? To do otherwise would be to admit to one of the most horrible offenses against the health and well-being of our armed forces in the history of this nation - dioxin poisoning (Agent Orange) in Vietnam, and Gulf War Syndrome, being a couple others that come to mind.
During the 2000 election campaign, now-Vice President Dick Cheney promised veterans: "HELP IS ON THE WAY!"
We're still waiting.
And now the FDA has given "conditional approval" to Bioport to release the controversial vaccine. In a matter of months, service-members again will live in fear and dread of being forced to choose between jail, discharge or their health - and perhaps that of their families.
When "U.S. Medicine" magazine (Sept. 2000 issue) asked then-candidate George W. Bush: "What is your assessment of the Defense Department's Anthrax Immunization Program?" this was his reply:
"(This program) has raised numerous health concerns and caused fear among individuals whose lives it touches. I don't feel the current administration's anthrax immunization program has taken into account the effect of this program on the soldiers in our military and their families. Under my administration, soldiers and their families will be taken into consideration."
Have they been? And WHY does a man like Crowe stand to BENEFIT from decisions made by the Bush Administration, passed down to the Department of Defense? Can the White House be "tone-deaf" to the many protests throughout the country to these forced shots? Or is money and profit the final denominator?
Time will tell.
But time is also a living hell, a never-ending nightmare, for those afflicted with a myriad of illnesses as a result of the injections. They have lost their military careers, and in some cases, their freedom. Their families suffer too. Just ask former Michigan National Guard recruiter Tom Starkweather, who "literally has to crawl upstairs because it hurts to walk."
This sergeant is out of the service now - no pension, no career, no hope. Every day he "wakes up hurting," a constant reminder of what was done to him by the military and his own government he swore to protect with his life.
Sometimes when he feels lumps under his skin, has vomiting and diarrhea, and chills so bad his body shakes while he wraps himself in a blanket, he thinks of those who "profit" while he suffers.
One can imagine Admiral Crowe, patting his abundant belly and lighting up another cigar, visions of MORE money dancing through his head. Does the thought ever cross his mind that at that very moment, in a thousand homes in America, on military bases here and abroad and on ships at sea, American men and women are sick and suffering? Some don't dare complain because they will be kicked out of the service. Others don't care anymore. And some - they just want to die.
IF ADMIRAL CROWE FEELS WE HAVE BEEN UNFAIR AND DONE VIOLENCE TO HIS TRUE AIMS AND GOALS - HIS "LOYALTY" TO AND "CONCERN" FOR THE MEN AND WOMEN WHO ONCE SERVED UNDER HIS COMMAND - LET HIM GIVE HIS SIDE OF THE STORY HERE ON MILITARYCORRUPTION.COM. WE WILL PUBLISH HIS WORDS AS HE WRITES THEM, WITHOUT EDITING.
WE ALSO WON'T HOLD OUR BREATH WAITING FOR SUCH AN EXPLANATION. BUT WE SURE WOULD LIKE TO KNOW WHY THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION IS "SAVING CROWE'S HASH."