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Subject:      Flu Part Two
From:         Tom Keske (trkeske@yahoo.com)
Date:         1997/12/20
Newsgroups:   alt.politics.homosexuality

FLU PART TWO  (gesundheit)

Concerning the possible germ warfare origins of the 1918 flu epidemic that killed an estimated 20 million people,

Dhencke says:

<< A very close friend, highly placed at CDC until he developed
<< of the virus from the 18/19 pandemic and that they never
<< could have been "analyzed" by ANYONE much less an
<< "Armed Forces Institute of Pathology" (by the way, please
<< document this "agency's" role vis a vis CDC/NIH in analysis).

Referring to the "Armed Forces Institute of Pathology" IS an example of citing a verifiable source.   I appreciate the challenge, though, because it will provide an example of how you cannot necessarily trust sources "highly placed at the CDC" (not that THIS is yet a verifiable source).

It also helps me see part of the problem, why some newsgroup folks become so highly opinionated while ignorant- they do not know how, or do not bother,  to avail themselves of the wealth of information available to them on internet.  Within 30 seconds of searching under Yahoo or Alta Vista, you could be making a phone call to the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology, and asking them directly whether or not they exist (202) 782-2100  ( http://www.afip.mil  ).

Doing a little homework this way, before challenging, could save much embarrassment.  More than that, it is a phenomenal tool for learning and investigation.

The Armed Forces Institute of Pathology (AFIP) is a tri-service agency of the Department of Defense with a threefold mission of consultation, education, and research. Dr. Jeffery K. Taubenberger led the team in the study cited.

The information for the post was from Associated Press, also appearing in the "Science" journal in March '97.  You can see references to the article in:

  Augusta Chronicle:  http://augustachronicle.com/stories/032197/fea_flu.html  
  Daily Iowan: http://www.uiowa.edu/~dlyiowan.../v128/il64/stories/A0602N.html

In all fairness, I can see where some of the confusion stems for the fellow at CDC.  I also read an MD who claimed in Jan '97 that no virus samples existed.  Apparently, though, there were samples that were not widely known, because by March '97, the AFIP released the study.  Perhaps it means that DOD kept some samples, secretly (just a guess).

When 20 million people die from a new "mystery disease", it would be almost incomprehensible NOT to keep some samples, even in 1918.

I have found other bewildering contradictions in the literature, all from very boring and respectable sources, not "conspiracy" stuff.

Some source said that the epidemic began in Spain, others said China, others said America.

I saw one MD who said that 5 million people were killed, worldwide. Most sources seemed to say 20 million.  Some sources said up to 40 or 50 million, dead from flu.

How do you "lose" 20 or 30 million people?  I understand that in war, people die like flies all around, and there isn't time to do an autopsy on them all.  On the other hand, the governments have to understand what they are dealing with, and 20-30 million deaths is a hell of a margin of error.

It is similar to the grossly differing death totals that I noticed in different sources for the Mai Lai massacre, different by a couple hundred percent, yet very specific
numbers listed.

I once knew a woman who handled top-secret info regarding Cambodia, during Vietnam.  Figures from her reports sometimes appeared in the press, with numbers and dollar amounts altered at will.  She never knew who altered it.

The confusion probably stems from how governments give to the press whatever manufactured information suits their purposes, especially in times of war.

The Allied governments, the press, the Vatican knew about the Holocaust, yet didn't talk much about it during the war. We can manage not to notice an extra 20 million people as easily as we can manage not to notice 6 million.

I am still studying the 1918 epidemic, and make no conclusions cast in concrete- we can never know for sure.

I am aware how new and sometimes virulent strains of flu can arise, naturally.

The problem is, imagine presenting a PhD virologist with two Dengue fever victims, one natural, and one from biowar, and ask the virologist which is which.  He cannot possibly know, no matter how much he studies the two.  For all intents and purposes, the net result is the same.

You cannot judge, simply because the virus is familiar, or because the virus is only slightly mutated from something familiar, or  because the virus is completely unlike anything seen before.  Any of these circumstances could be natural, or could be biowar.

Biowar provides inherent "plausible deniability", the holy grail of covert action, the greatest of temptations to indulge in the darkest human instincts, without accountability.

I searched to see if the Germans were also hit by the virus, and they were.  The 1918 epidemic was truly global.

This also does not mean that it was not biowar.  During the WWII Manhattan Project, scientists did not know that a nuclear chain reaction would not continue forever, and destroy the entire planet.  They went ahead, and tested, anyway.

The flu epidemic could have been biowar that backfired, a desperate hope that the enemy would be hit harder.

I was surprised to find that this epidemic may well have influenced the course of the entire war.  I had not realized that President Wilson himself almost died of flu, as did a high-ranking British politician.

I read one article that echoed my own impression- how strange that there was so little mention of the epidemic in military literature, considering the profound effect that it had.

Victors of a war can write their own version of history. We know when a secret scandal or crime is exposed, but by definition, never know at all of crimes that are not exposed. This biases us, foolishly, with the falsely reassuring notion that most scandals get exposed.

Perhaps the secret is kept, the men who know dare not tell, the old men who once knew carry the secret to their graves, history and reality themselves are altered, forever.

Against this shuddering thought, a possible truth should at least be vocalized:

If Germany had won the war, we would never hear about the gas warfare atrocities.  The victors of a war tend significantly to whitewash their own behavior, while greatly exaggerating the atrocities of the enemy.

I was reading also of a long-suppressed report that became public in 1991 (sources: Journal for Historical Review; historians T. Allen and N Polmar, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 8/4/95 [New York Times special features]).  It described how American leaders planned to use poison gas against Japan, before the nuclear option became available.  Hitler had also considered poison gas, but refrained.  Our government had pledged not use poison gas, after WWI.

We would of course have the bias to assume that the nasty Germans would be the ones to use germ warfare.

It is my believe that such brutality is neither uniquely German nor American- it is uniquely human, the imagined differences reflecting mostly the power that pride and propaganda have over perception.

Supposedly, the Americans were hit first by the virus, but then again, when governments want to cover something up, they play games with when the epidemic started, where it started, who was most affected by it.

Of the clues, in my judgment of human nature, the great confusion and strange silence should trump the contrary clues. Thus far, I have not so much as seen the "G" word  (germ warfare) even mentioned.  It seems far more taboo than the other "G" word (you know what I mean).

Mothers know, when children are silent, they are probably up to no good.  I suggest that when there is strange silence, it is probably because it was the Allies who tried the germ war, a Manhattan Project-style gamble that this time, truly did

We will never know.  It is better that someone, somewhere, should at least speculate on the possibility, if this should be the only expression of a truth that would be more profound than the Holocaust of the Second World War.

Tom Keske
Boston, Mass.