3500 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd
On Veteran’s day November 2001, citizens were preparing to stage a demonstration in Lansing, Michigan on a street appropriately named Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., after one of America’s most famous protest leaders. As citizens approached the building numbered 3500, they were faced with a strange site previously unknown in this small community. Armed soldiers from the Michigan National Guard had surrounded the building providing protection from dangers not apparent to anyone but President George W. Bush.
The story of how the Michigan National Guard had been activated for this duty by President Bush in a face off with its own citizens, most of them former military veterans, is the story of almost unimaginable greed involving the theft of hundreds of millions of dollars of public resources for private gain. It is the story of the poisoning of the American military with a worthless and debilitating Anthrax Vaccine by war profiteers and politicians seeking cheap political and financial advantage.
3500 Martin Luther King Blvd is the site of the former State owned Michigan Biologic Products Institute that had been, now, transformed into the privately owned Bioport Corporation. The hidden history of this transformation is critical to understanding the events of giving rise to the Veteran’s Day March of November 2001.
The Michigan Biologic Products Institute of the Michigan Department of Public Health had it origins at the turn of the century when the State of Michigan established a biologics lab within the Health Department.
In the 1920’s, the state’s biologic lab began the manufacture of vaccines for the public health of the state’s citizens. It served this public purpose so well that its combination DaPT vaccine contained the safest Whopping Cough vaccine available anywhere in the nation. The only other available commercial DPT vaccines contained whole killed virus that caused greater adverse antigenic reactions that resulted, many times, in unnecessary brain damage or death of young children. Commercial vaccine developers made their whole virus vaccine cheaper and with more profit than the publicly produced and safer vaccine made by the State of Michigan with only viral parts.
But as time and history moved on, a retrogressive movement began to convert public resources to private gain as corporate greed became bolder and more unrestrained. The first success in these efforts began in England where Margaret Thatcher and the Conservative Party engaged in the wholesale of virtually every conceivable public asset to privateers and plunderers. In 1993 the Thatcher government decided to engage in one particular incident of what was euphemistically called privatization but was more transparently the diversion of public resources to private gain involving the Center for Applied Microbiology and Research (CAMR) at Porton Downs, England. It is relevant to the story of 3500 Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd with its subsequent transformation from the public service of children by the production of safe childhood vaccines to the Bioport Corporation with its bio-warfare profiteers and its president Fuad El-Hibri.
The CAMR labs at Porton Downs are the English equivalent of the American bio-warfare labs at Fort Dietrich, Maryland. In particular, they were the only source located outside the United States for the bio-warfare Anthrax vaccine. In fact, the British Anthrax vaccine has an advantage over the vaccine produced at the Michigan Department of Public Health lab. The British version was actually designed to work on inhaled Anthrax of the more deadly Ames strain while the U.S. produced vaccine was for prevention of cutaneous Anthrax skin infections of agricultural workers by the less virulent Vollum strain.
A group of investors organized by Fuad El-Hibri formed a company that was at the time the largest private biotechnology firm in the world, Porton International. Fuad El-Hibri served as a director of the newly formed company. Porton was given the exclusive right to commercially market the bio-warfare vaccines and other products produced by the British government at its Porton Downs labs by the CAMR. The most notable of these products were Botulinum Type A vaccine and Anthrax vaccine.
Fuad El-Hibri immediately after winning control of the products produced at Porton Downs arranged deliveries of biotech defense products to Saudi Arabia. Saudi Arabia had previously been rebuffed in its attempts to purchase these agents. Saudi Arabia desired the agents as protection against the possible use by Iraq of Anthrax provided by then C.I.A. director, George W. Bush Sr., to Iraq for possible use against Iran.
Fuad El-Hibri , prior to his creation of Porton International , had worked in the mergers-and-acquisitions department of Citibank in Jedda, Saudi Arabia, where he specialized in arranging investments for large Saudi investors. Citibank and Fuad El-Hibri were bankers both for the individual financial holdings of the bin Laden family group and the larger $18 billion Carlyse Group of which includes participation of the bin Laden family. Both the bin Laden family and the Carlyse Group are both reputed to have had partnership interests with Fuad El-Hibri’s Porton, International and Bioport investments. These embarrassing partnerships are the result of complex web of interlocking private corporate holdings and are publicly denied the El-Hibri family.
The actual ownership relationships are deliberately hidden in a labyrinth of smoke and mirrors involving private corporations and secret partnerships typical of the dark world of international armaments, defense industry, spying, and international intrigue. Publicly, Porton, International is owned by Speywood Holdings Ltd., which, in turn, is owned by I & F Holdings NV, a Netherlands Antilles corporate shell owned by Fuad El-Hibri, a Lebanese Arab with both German and U.S. citizenship; his father, Ibrihim El-Hibri; various Saudi and other unknown investors which almost surely includes the Carlyse Group. The Carlyse Group is a semi-secret financial organization that does not disclose its business affairs, as it is a privately held corporation in the sensitive defense business.
It is important to understand all of the involved personal and financial inter-relationships in order to comprehend the political issues that arise with the involvement of the Carlyse Group. The Carlyse Group is company that achieves extreme profits through investment in the defense industry. It is a politically expedient and profitable money machine for its primarily Saudi investors including the bin Laden family and various military, corporate, banking, and government officials from the United States and Western Europe. These include the former President Gorge W. Bush Sr., James Baker III the former U.S. Secretary of State, Frank Carlucci former deputy CIA Director and U.S. Secretary of Defense, John Major former Prime Minister of the UK, Eberhard Kuenheim former chairman of Bayer and BMW, Dick Darman, Karl-Otto Pohl former President of Deutsche Bundesbank
It is equally important to digress just a bit from our story to explain that the involvement of George Bush Sr. with the bin Laden family and Saudi business interests is not of recent origin but has a very long history. Over thirty years ago, Salem bin Laden, the eldest of Osama bin Laden's brothers , invested in George H. W. Bush's Arbusto Energy. The bin Laden connection was established through James Bath who represented the bin Laden interests in Texas. Bath lived in Houston, Texas and was close friends with Bush. Bath handled the $50,000 bin Laden investment in Bush's company Arbusto. Salem bin Laden also purchased Houston Gulf Airport through James Bath.
The Center for Public Integrity has stated that current President, "George W. Bush could, some day, benefit financially from his own administration's decisions, through his father's investments." Indeed, somewhat of an understatement.
By 1996, the rape of the public resources of Great Britain was virtually complete. So the profit making interests of the Saudi’s and the Carlyse Group began to look to the United States for more promising plunder. They did not have to look very deeply because Bush and company already owned Michigan Republican Governor John Engler. Governor Engler was persuaded by his cronies to sell off the state’s biologic products lab after nearly a century of service to the citizens. The Governor removed the biologic lab from the Department of Public Health established it as a new state agency, the “Michigan Biologics Products Institute.” This new agency was limited to a two-year term of existence. This action, along with the creation of a three-person commission (Michigan Biologics Products Commission) was the beginning of the privatization of Michigan’s vaccine facility by Fuad El-Hibri. Governor Engler gave the most respectable and profitable agency in Michigan government to Fuad El-Hibri without any individual investment whatsoever. The new owners of the Michigan biologics lab incurred no individual expense, made no investments, and did not owe any individual promissory notes or obligations of any kind for their new lab purchase. Receipt of a $180 million business for absolutely nothing in return. Isn’t privatization grand? Isn’t it really legalized theft. See the testimony that Fuad El-Hibri, President and Chief Executive Officer, BioPort Corporation presented to The Subcommittee on National Security, Veterans Affairs, and International Relations of the House Committee on Government Reform June 30, 1999.
The entire business with its enormously profitably sole source contracts with the federal government were transferred wholly to Bioport secured only by corporate promissory notes to be paid out of future income in the amount of 25 million. Yet, State Rep. Lingg Brewer, D-Holt, estimated the lab (MBPI) “ . . . to be worth up to $78 million, because the lab is the only federally approved manufacturer of anthrax vaccine." The only out of pocket expense incurred by Bioport was the indebtedness in the form of a capital lease from Bank One for the purchase of a single blood plasma fractionation centrifuge.
The next hand out the company received was an unsecured, interest-free loan of $18.7 million as an advance payment from the Defense Department. That was on top of already promised subsidies from the Defense Department that included improvements and renovations of its physical plant that were originally to be a 29 million-windfall gift but quickly escalated as the Bioport cabal were quick to seize their opportunities to pillage. In the end Bioport got the US Government to give them $126 million ostensibly in the interest of national security.
Additionally, the federal government agreed to pay triple the original cost in the contract for vaccine, from $3.50 a dose, to over ten dollars on vaccine that had been produced not by Bioport but by the State of Michigan and turned over to Bioport as part of the sale of the MBPI lab.
Fuad El-Hibri testified to The Subcommittee on National Security, Veterans Affairs, and International Relations of the House Committee on Government Reform on June 30, 1999 that:
“Three companies currently hold voting equity in BioPort: Intervac LLC and Intervac Management LLC, which are both Maryland limited liability companies, and Michigan Biologic Products, Inc., a Michigan corporation. Intervac LLC is the controlling shareholder. Intervac LLC is owned by Admiral Crowe, my wife Nancy and me, and I and F Holdings N.V., a Netherlands Antilles investment company owned by my father Ibrahim El-Hibri. As mentioned earlier, I and F Holdings is an investment company in biotech operations, which previously had invested in the management buy-out of Porton Products Ltd. Admiral Crowe and I are the controlling members of Intervac LLC”.
While Fuad El-Hibri was needed no financing to take over the State of Michigan biologic lab, he did need a front man to reassure the military with respect to their Anthrax contract. He already had the perfect front man in former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Adm. William J. Crowe Jr. Adm. Crowe had a long history of involvement with the El-Hibri family.
Crowe owns 22.5 percent of Intervac shares, although he hasn’t invested a penny in the venture. Why should he invest real money when no one else has either? Assets are being obtained at the public expense without even the myth of individual investment.
MEDICAL ISSUES AND THE ATTENDANT SCANDALS
But it was not the hundred million dollar financial swindle of taxpayer resources that had so aroused citizens on their Veterans Day march on Bioport. Instead it was the medical scandals involving Anthrax vaccine. These scandals are many and varied and we will attempt to address them but with the realization that it is probably not possible to address all of them adequately without writing a lengthy tome.
The history of the production of the Anthrax vaccine begins with the giant Merck pharmaceutical company. Merck developed and produced an Anthrax vaccine that had been tested and approved by the FDA for human use in a 1955-1959 study. The vaccine was for used primarily to inoculate animals and veterinarians and others coming into close contact with animal products. The vaccine was developed from the Vollum strain of Anthrax for use in the prevention of cutaneous Anthrax skin infections of agricultural workers. It was never tested nor approved for the use in preventing Anthrax infection from inhaled weaponized Anthrax from the more virulent Ames strain. Merck stopped production of this vaccine because of its very limited use and lack of profits.
The Michigan Department of Public Health received a license from the FDA to produce the orphan Merck Anthrax vaccine. The license was subsequently transferred to the Michigan Biologic Products Institute (MBPI) upon the Public Health Department lab’s transformation into an independent State agency.
From this point on, many of the parties have maintained a policy of outright lies and obfuscation of the facts typical of the secrecy involved in the illegal activities described below.
The 1972 Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production and Stockpiling of Bacteriological (Biological) and Toxin Weapons and on Their Destruction, also known as the Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention or BWC, prohibits the development, production, stockpiling and acquisition of these weapons. The BWC thus supplements the prohibition on use of biological weapons contained in the 1925 Geneva Protocol. The United States is a signatory to this treaty. But, like many other international agreements by which the United States is bound, this treaty remains largely ignored by the Untied States. While publicly destroying stockpiles of nerve gas weapons and their delivery rockets, the United States continued its illegal research and development of biological weapons at Fort Dietrich, Maryland. One of the illegal biological weapons, which the United States was engaged in research and development was, weaponized Anthrax.
Part of the development of biological weapons is the need to develop and maintain antidotes to such weapons. As a result of this need the Department of Defense in the late 1980’s ordered large amounts of the Anthrax vaccine from the State of Michigan that was the sole source manufacturer of the vaccine.
The State of Michigan changed the process and chemical composition of its vaccine to meet the Department of Defense need for a vaccine to counteract inhaled Anthrax. The government needed a vaccine that prompted a stronger immune response in order to be effective against a virulent inhaled Anthrax. Michigan complied by adding several ingredients needed to accomplish the Defense Department objective. The DOD will later falsely claim that it did not have any knowledge of the changes in the vaccine. .
The vaccine changes included an increase in protective antigen (PA) 4,000 times greater than in lots of anthrax vaccine manufactured following the earlier FDA approved formula. This and the addition of other components is what give rise to the problems with vaccine safety.
One of the other ingredients included in the Anthrax vaccine is an additive to boost its immune reaction in the hopes of making it effective against inhaled Anthrax. It is Squalene which is found in shark oil, the human liver, some vegetable oils and; as an additive to enhance vaccine immune reactions. According to a 1999 U.S. Government Accounting Office report Squalene is used to foster a faster, stronger or longer protective reaction from vaccines.
The Pentagon denied the presence of Squalene until that position was publicly proved to be a lie as a result of a 1999 Tulane University study of blood samples taken from sick gulf war veterans detected the presence of antibodies to Squalene.. The Pentagon then quickly adopted the position that the amount was so small as to be inconsequential. The FDA has not approved the use of Squalene for use in the anthrax vaccine.
Previously, Congress' watchdog agency, the General Accounting Office, had reported that gulf war veterans were complaining of mysterious, undiagnosed illnesses similar to patients with auto-immune disorders. A Tennessee immunologist, Dr. Pamela B. Asa, concluded those illnesses were caused by exposure to additives in vaccines, the GAO said.
GAO investigators accused the Pentagon of a "pattern of deception'' with respect to vaccine additives. U.S. Rep. Jack Metcalf, R-Washington, said his official inquiry concluded that Pentagon officials "stonewalled" attempts to examine the Anthrax vaccine's additives. Metcalf distributed his inquiry report to the House Subcommittee on National Security, Veterans' Affairs and International Relations headed by U.S. Rep. Christopher Shays, R-Conn. during an appearance in September 2000.
The medical evidence is aptly summarized by Autoimmune Technologies as follows:
LINK GULF WAR SYNDROME TO ANTHRAX VACCINE
Data published in the February 2000 and August 2002 issues of Experimental and Molecular Pathology strongly suggests that Gulf War Syndrome is caused by a vaccine contaminated with squalene. The August 2002 article is entitled "Antibodies to Squalene in Recipients of Anthrax Vaccine" (Exp. Mol. Pathol. 73,19-27 2002).
Gulf War Syndrome, or GWS, is the term which has been applied to the multi-symptom rheumatic disorder experienced by many veterans of the 1990-1991 Persian Gulf war. A similar disorder appeared in 1990-1991-era personnel who were never deployed to the Persian Gulf theater of operations and also in other military personnel, including participants in the Anthrax Vaccine Immunization Program, or AVIP, which was inaugurated in 1997. No data has ever suggested that the disorder experienced by the deployed 1990-1991 soldiers is different from the disorder experienced by the other groups of patients, but the other cases have not been considered to be cases of GWS.
Squalene was found by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in five lots of the AVIP anthrax vaccine. The discovery of serum anti-squalene antibodies and the development of a test to detect these antibodies has made it possible to see that links appear to exist between the contaminated AVIP vaccine lots, the illness experienced by post-1997 vaccine recipients, the illness experienced by non-deployed 1990-1991-era patients, and the illness in deployed 1990-1991-era patients that has been referred to as GWS.
The data establishing these links is presented in the peer-reviewed February 2000 and August 2002 articles. The published findings (1) strongly suggest that the GWS-like illness being reported by all of the various patient groups is the same illness, (2) strongly suggest that the contaminated vaccine caused the illness in the AVIP group, and (3) further suggest that squalene contamination of one or more 1990-1991-era vaccines accounts for the GWS cases from that era.
The veteran's suffering from Gulf War syndrome or more appropriately Anthrax vaccine poisoning were forced to do so needlessly. Not only was the vaccine not effective against inhlation Anthrax but also was not even effective for the cutaneous Anthrax skin infections for which it was designed. That is because the 1990-1991 Gulf War military personnel were given only two of the required six injections necessary for immunity.
Perhaps the Pentagon thought and acted on the belief that if any protection were to be afforded by the vaccine it would have to be as a result of the additives and 4000 fold increase in the Gulf War era vaccine PA levels. But it is clearly known that their reckless behavior resulted in thousands of injuries.
Another principal chemical component of the Anthrax Vaccine, formaldehyde, is not approved for human consumption according to the U. S. Government Material Data Safety Sheet. It is a known carcinogen.
2.4 mg of aluminum hydroxide as adjuvant is added to the vaccine to increase antibody response. Aluminum is a cardiovascular or blood toxicant, neurotoxicant, and respiratory toxicant. More hazardous than most chemicals in 2 out of 6 ranking systems on at least 2 federal regulatory lists.
Some medical researchers note a link between aluminum hydroxide and a condition called “Macrophagic Myofasciitis.” Muscle biopsies from tissue samples of some patients who were experiencing muscle pain and fatigue show unusual concentrations of macrophages, the immune system’s scavenger cells.
Remain Gherardi, a pathologist in Paris published an article in the journal, BRAIN that suggests that the immune reactions that are triggered by aluminum hydroxide could help explain some of the chronic fatigue and associated symptoms known as GULF WAR SYNDROME. Gherardi explains that some of the symptoms he finds in his MMF patients are “strikingly similar to those reported by Gulf war veterans, citing an article published by Coker et. al. (British Medical Journal 1999; 318: 290-294).
He writes that multiple vaccinations over a short period of time have been seen as a risk factor for Gulf War Syndrome. Keep in mind the anthrax vaccine that uses aluminum hydroxide is a 6-shot regimen, followed by annual boosters.
Our military reacted with promptly and with more common sense then the Pentagon leaders with mass resistance
Thomas D. Williams reports in the The Hartford Courant of September 28, 2000 that:
“more than 1,500 service people have complained about side effects of varying severity that they blame on the vaccine. Hundreds of service people have refused to be inoculated and have been disciplined or discharged, while hundreds more in the reserve and National Guard and at least 250 military pilots have resigned rather than take the six shots required. At least 250 military pilots have resigned, raising questions about U.S. battle readiness. Seasoned fighter pilots can cost as much as $3 million to train, according to Air Force.”
The Pentagon was well aware during the Gulf War that this vaccine had not been approved as to efficacy or safety for inhalation Anthrax. That is why the President was forced to waive the informed consent requirements for administration of an unapproved drug.
In 1984 a group of military experts recommended to the DOD that an application to FDA be made to obtain that approval. The FDA claims it was not aware of the Pentagon report until notified by the GAO on October 15th 2001. Perhaps the FDA failed to notice the use of the vaccine during the 1990-1991 Gulf War. No doubt they missed the debate about the Presidential waiver on informed consent also.
In 1996, after the vaccine license had been transferred to the MBPI, the institute filed the application for such a license change. Processing of the application automatically throws a vaccine back into the category of experimental or "investigational" drugs, which have to have the (informed) consent of the person getting the inoculation. Only the president can waive the informed consent requirement, which the first President Bush did in the Gulf War.
In 1998, President Bush, apparently more concerned about profits for his father’s business cronies then the safety of our soldiers reinstituted the previously suspended mandatory Anthrax vaccinations.
That is the true story behind the Veteran’s Day march at 3500 Martin
Luther King Jr. Blvd.
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