By Alan Cantwell Jr., M.D.
Is AIDS a covert genocide program? Could American gays be victims of a government-sponsored, Nazi-like extermination program?
How did the Holocaust succeed in wiping out almost the entire Jewish population of Europe? The decision to liquidate European Jewry was secretly authorized at the highest levels of the German government. Through sophisticated propaganda techniques the natural resistance of the general population to genocide was neutralized so that massive killings could proceed without interference.
In The Genocidal Mentality, Robert Jay Lipton and Eric Markusen investigate the psychological mechanisms underlying the Nazi atrocities. "Genocide requires well-educated professionals. They are necessary for its technology, its organization, and its rationale. In the Nazi case, members of all the professions--physicians, scientists, engineers, military leaders, lawyers, clergy, university professors, and school teachers--were all effectively mobilized to the ideological project." The authors add, "A nation carrying out genocide must create new institutions and alter existing ones."
The Nazi perpetrators were carefully chosen for their obedience and loyalty. The Jews never fully realized that the Germans were serious in their avowal to exterminate all of them as enemies of the Third Reich. The Jews preferred psychological denial to the incomprehensible thought that every single one of them was doomed.
To those perceptive enough to discern it, the mass deaths of homosexuals from AIDS was similar to the mass deaths of Jews in the Holocaust. The scientists blamed the green monkeys and African Blacks; the public blamed the homosexual lifestyle; the gays blamed themselves; and the U.S. government did as little as possible to stem the rising toll of gay AIDS deaths. During his first term of office as president, Ronald Reagan never once mentioned the word AIDS in public.
In their genocide program the Nazis, under the leadership of Adolf Hitler, first secured the cooperation of the German physicians. Almost half were members of the Nazi party. These doctors were the original architects and perpetrators of Hitler's prewar forced euthanasia "T-4" program that led to the murder of one hundred thousand mentally and physically disabled people in an attempt to "purify" the German people.
Hitler then turned to the masses to support him in his mission. Political rallies were transformed into vast public spectacles of a grandeur not seen since the days of ancient Rome. The Germans were hypnotized into believing they were a nation of demi-gods. Those who were not susceptible to the propaganda of racial superiority were subjected to innuendo, lies, fear, intimidation, coercion, incarceration and finally, elimination. Thus did Hitler lead his people into a frenzy of mass murder against their enemies, real and imagined.
As they had been labeled for two thousand years, the Jews were again branded as killers of Christ. They were Communists determined to destroy the German nation, moneyed parasites that sucked the blood of the German people. The Jews were a cancer that needed to be cut out of a diseased Germany. Jews were microbes that had to be purged from the body of Deutschland.
Hitler's mission to rid Germany of its Jews became messianic. In Mein Kampf he wrote: "The Jew today is the great agitator for the complete destruction of Germany." He did not want to see Germany fall victim to the "Jewish doctrine of Marxism." In his view, Germany could only survive the Russian-Jewish-Communist threat by becoming a community of physically and psychically homogenous creatures. In this community the Jew, with his foreign ways and his racial and religious identity, had no place. He concluded, "I believe that I am acting in accordance with the will of the Almighty Creator: by defending myself against the Jew, I am fighting for the work of the Lord."
Along with the Jews, other enemies had to be eliminated: Gypsies, homosexuals, prostitutes, drunkards, beggars, vagabonds, Jehovah's Witnesses, Freemasons, criminal elements and other genetically and politically-incorrect individuals that fouled the purity of the Third Reich.
In the 1970s, large numbers of white gay men came out of the closet. Bigots, racists and white supremacists responded by adding "faggots" to the top of their hate list. When the hepatitis B experiment began in 1978, gays were arguably the most hated minority in America, more despised than Blacks and Jews.
A gay Black physician once told me that white gay men did not fully understand the social and political consequences of coming out. When white men identified themselves as queer, they lost all the privileges and the protection provided to white heterosexual men in American society. By publicly relinquishing their heterosexuality, the doctor believed that gays placed themselves in a very dangerous situation. He predicted the government would treat gays badly. White gays would soon find out what it was like to be a Black man in America. He thought it might even be worse for gays because it was still socially acceptable for everyone, including Blacks and Jews, to hate gays.
When the closet doors opened, the government was startled by the political strength and the social demands of the new gay and lesbian civil rights movement. After centuries of oppression, thousands of gays were becoming more secure in their sexuality. They felt good about themselves as human beings; they wanted equal status with heterosexuals. Many straight Americans disliked the brazen sexuality of this new breed of homosexual. Gay and lesbian demands for social reform especially infuriated the religious right.
For a century homosexuals had been erroneously classified as psychologically deranged. Under pressure from gay activists, the American Psychiatric Association finally took homosexuals off their list of mentally ill people in the early 1970s. However, the World Health Organization (WHO) still classifies homosexuality as a mental illness.
Soon after their mental status was clarified, American gays faced another serious health problem. The physical health of homosexual men now came to the attention of the medical authorities. According to public health statistics provided by government epidemiologists, the gay community was infested with venereal disease. The most shocking rates of infection were for hepatitis B.
It was Nazi doctors who first proved that hepatitis was infectious. In their experiments, physicians forced concentration camp prisoners to eat material scraped out of the stomachs of people who had turned yellow from liver disease. When the prisoners subsequently sickened with yellow jaundice, the Nazi doctors determined that hepatitis was most likely caused by an infectious agent, probably a virus.
During World War II, thousands of American GIs became accidentally infected with hepatitis following compulsory vaccinations. The cause of the hepatitis epidemic was traced back to contaminated batches of yellow fever vaccine. The vaccine was manufactured, in part, from human blood serum contaminated with the infectious agent of hepatitis. After injection with yellow fever vaccine, the soldiers became infected with serum hepatitis.
When hepatitis B was also proven to be a sexually transmitted disease, it was discovered that half the gay population was infected with hepatitis B virus. The epidemiologists determined that homosexual men were a potential public health menace not only to themselves, but to the larger public as well.
During the 1970s promiscuous behavior became widespread not only among gays, but also among straights. It became fashionable for gay physicians to talk about the "special" diseases that affected their homosexual clientele.
The new buzz word was "anal sex." It seemed to be involved in many of the venereal diseases common in gays: gonorrhea, syphilis, herpes, warts, intestinal parasites, and especially hepatitis. New illnesses like "the gay bowel syndrome" began to appear in the medical literature. A new philosophy was promoted emphasizing that the medical needs of gays were different from straights. As a result, gay community leaders put pressure on the government to provide better health care for homosexuals.
Because of this new medical attitude, civic- and healthminded homosexual volunteers responded in large numbers to test a new experimental vaccine, which offered the hope of eradicating hepatitis B from the gay population.
The groundwork for the experiment began in 1973 when The Gay Men's Health Project in Manhattan provided blood samples for hepatitis B testing at The New York City Blood Center. The results were astonishing! One out of every two gay blood samples were positive. By contrast, only 5% of the blood samples from straights were positive.
Developed at the Merck Institute for Therapeutic Research at West Point, Pennsylvania, the first crude experimental vaccine was tested in chimpanzees, the only animal susceptible to the human hepatitis B virus. Later, the vaccine was tried on a small group of retarded children.
When the experimental vaccine was ready to be more widely tested in humans, several "high risk" groups were considered. These included male homosexuals, drug addicts, mentally deficient adults, Chinese-Americans, indigenous Alaskans, and patients and medical staff of kidney dialysis centers. After much debate, the epidemiologists decided that young promiscuous gay men would be the best group to test the efficiency of the vaccine.
Wolf Szmuness, a Polish physician trained in the Soviet Union, was placed in charge of the hepatitis B vaccine trial to be conducted at the New York City Blood Center. Sketchy details of his life appear posthumously in an article written by Aaron Kellner, a colleague at the Center.
Szmuness, a Jew born in Poland in 1919, was a young medical student in eastern Poland when the Nazis invaded the country in the summer of 1939. When Poland was partitioned by Germany and Russia, Szmuness was sent to Siberia as a political prisoner. His entire family in western Poland was murdered by the Nazis in the Holocaust. His years in exile in Siberia were "a long dark period that he was most reluctant to talk about."
June Goodfield in Quest for the Killers, the definitive account of the gay hepatitis experiment, provides information on Szmuness' painful years in Siberia. During confinement he was repeatedly interrogated and beaten by the Russian KGB for refusing to cooperate in spy activities. When he could not be broken, they warned him: "Say nothing of this to anyone, but remember. We will reach you anywhere in the world. No matter where you go, no matter where you try to hide, you will never be out of our grasp."
After release from detention in 1946 he was allowed to finish his medical education in Tomsk in central Russia. While a student, he married a Russian woman. He specialized in epidemiology, and when his wife contracted a nearly fatal case of hepatitis, Szmuness decided to dedicate his life to the study of this liver disease.
In 1959 the Soviets allowed Szmuness, and his wife and daughter, to return to Poland where he worked as an epidemiologist in the health department. Szmuness told Aaron Kellner a story about this period when he was exhausted due to the stresses of his job. He applied to the authorities for a vacation at a rest home. While recuperating, Szmuness shared a room with a young Catholic priest. A remarkable friendship developed and the two men corresponded for a long time thereafter. The Polish priest eventually became the first Polish pope in Catholic history: the current anti-Communist and anti-gay Pope John Paul II.
There are conflicting reports of how Szmuness came to America. According to Kellner, the Communists allowed Szmuness and his family to attend a scientific meeting in Italy in 1969. While there, they defected to the West. This account is at odds with Allan Chase's account in Magic Shots.
Chase claims Szmuness was driven out of Poland in a 1968 Communist purge of the few remaining Jewish survivors of the Holocaust. June Goodfield also writes that Polish anti-Semitism cost Szmuness his job, resulting in his applying for a visa which eventually enabled him to get out of Poland legally. From Rome the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society arranged for the family to come to the U.S.
Szmuness arrived in Manhattan with $15 in his pocket. Through the intervention of Walsh McDermott, Professor of Public Health at New York Hospital, Szmuness was fortunate enough to secure a position as a lab technician at the New York City Blood Center. Within a few years he was given his own lab, and a separate department of epidemiology at the Center was created for him. In record time he was appointed Professor at the Columbia School of Public Health.
By the mid-1970s he was a world authority on hepatitis and transfusion medicine. In another startling occurrence, Szmuness was invited back to Moscow in 1975 to give a scientific presentation. As a defector he was terrified to set foot in the Soviet Union, and memories of KGB torture and interrogation still plagued him. However, his colleagues assured him he would have the full protection of the U.S. State Department. His return to Russia was a scientific triumph.
By the late 1970s he had been awarded millions of dollars in grant money and was phenomenally successful in his hepatitis work. Now he was fully prepared to undertake the most important mission of his life: the hepatitis B vaccine experiment.
First, Szmuness became acquainted with the gay community, and added homosexual physicians and activists to his staff. He was taken into the gay ghetto where he viewed the baths and the bars and the discos. Promiscuous homosexuals were perfect guinea pigs. They would prove, beyond doubt, that Szmuness could wipe hepatitis B off the face of the earth.
In the late 1970s a bloodmobile began canvassing the gay neighborhood in the Greenwich Village section of Manhattan, looking for homosexual volunteers. Over ten thousand men signed up and donated blood samples for Szmuness' upcoming experiment.
Szmuness was highly selective in the men he chose as finalists. He required that the men be highly promiscuous. In fact, the more promiscuous the better. He was testing a vaccine against a sexually-transmitted virus. Therefore, he didn't want any monogamous men, or men with lovers, in his experiment. He also wanted men who were healthy, young, responsible, intelligent, and preferably white. Promiscuous bisexuals were acceptable, but heterosexual men were excluded from the experiment. The men had to have an address and a phone number, and be willing to provide blood samples over a long period of time.
The hepatitis experiment was a costly one, and Szmuness didn't want any uncooperative or hard-to-find gays messing up his experiment. There was too much money at stake. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, were all involved in the study, as well as big pharmaceutical companies, such as Merck, Sharp & Dohme Inc., and Abbott Laboratories.
In preliminary experiments, Szmuness first tested his vaccine in chimpanzees. He then tested two hundred human volunteers, presumably gay men, by inoculating them with the vaccine. In the months before the official beginning of the experiment there had been no problem with the chimps or the volunteers. Szmuness was now ready to set the date for the final experiment--an experiment which would decimate the gay community in New York City.
The first group of gay men was inoculated in November 1978 at the New York City Blood Center. The experiment continued until October 1979. Over one thousand men from Manhattan were injected with Szmuness' vaccine.
In January 1979, a few months after Wolf Szmuness began his experiment, purple skin lesions began to appear on the bodies of young white gay men in the Village. The doctors were not sure exactly what was wrong with these men. During the next thirty months, Manhattan physicians encountered dozens of cases of a new disease characterized by immunodeficiency, Kaposi's sarcoma, and a rapidly fatal lung disease, known as Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia. All the men were young and gay and promiscuous. Almost all were white. All died horribly.
Within a few years, AIDS would become the leading cause of death of young men and young women living in New York City. The Big Apple would be designated the epicenter of the new plague with the highest number of AIDS cases in the country.
Wolf Szmuness was thrilled with the tremendous success of his hepatitis experiment. In March 1980 the CDC supervised additional gay experiments in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Denver, St. Louis and Chicago. In the fall of 1980 the first West Coast case of AIDS appeared in a young man from San Francisco.
Six months later, in June 1981, the AIDS epidemic became "official." The epidemiologists and health experts could not understand why large numbers of young, white, previously healthy homosexual men were dying mysteriously in Manhattan, San Francisco, and Los Angeles.
By the beginning of the 1980s, Szmuness was awarded millions of dollars for his research, and his hugely successful hepatitis vaccine was hailed as having tremendous global implications. He collaborated with the most powerful medical institutions in the nation: the NIH, the National Cancer Institute (NCI), the FDA, the WHO, and the Cornell, Yale and Harvard Schools of Public Health and the Russian Academy of Medical Science. Other global connections included the International Agency for Research on Cancer in Lyons, France, and close associations with third world African countries. Even the services of the Sengalese Army were employed to secure blood specimens in one of Szmuness' many African experiments.
In June 1982 Wolf Szmuness suddenly died of lung cancer. I could find no obituaries of his death in any of the medical journals, except for Aaron Kellner's account.
In closing his posthumous account of Szmuness and his scientific achievements, Aaron Kellner wrote: "He was the quintessential doctor's doctor. Most physicians in their professional careers influence the lives of a few hundred or a few thousand people. Some fortunate ones can influence the lives of a few million. It is the rare physician who, like Wolf Szmuness, is given the grace to touch the lives of billions of people--those living on this planet and generations yet unborn."
Szmuness' seminal work at the Blood Center continues to affect continents. Alfred Prince now coordinates the Center's programs with the WHO, with IARC in France, and with The Organization of African Unity. The Center has determined that all Black African babies are at "high risk" for hepatitis; all the babies require immunization. A 1983 report, published after Szmuness' death, details a new experimental hepatitis B vaccine program in Kangwane, using Black South African infants as subjects.
Most people are unaware of the gay experiments that preceded the mass deaths in the gay ghettos. But the details of the vaccine trials, and their effects on the health of homosexual men, are recorded for posterity in the annals of medical science.
Although Szmuness' death received no fanfare, he was remembered and honored by a small coterie of distinguished scientists--the national and international medical power brokers who run medical science, and who represent the media darlings. Those who paid tribute to Szmuness include the top government scientists in AIDS and cancer, the two discoverers of the AIDS virus, the most well-known researchers in animal experimentation, the heads of the most prestigious biomedical establishments in the nation, and the chief executives of drug companies tied to genetic engineering, vaccine production, and biological warfare research.
On May 11, 1984, a landmark meeting took place in the nation's capitol to honor Wolf Szmuness. One of the most distinguished attendees was Dr. Robert Gallo, who had announced the discovery of the AIDS virus three weeks earlier.
Looking over the list of contributors and participants at this remarkable symposium sponsored by the American Red Cross, I wondered what had really brought all these powerful people together to pay homage to Wolf Szmuness. I had lived long enough to recognize the truth contained in the adage, "Birds of a feather do indeed flock together."
There was a strange and ominous connection between cancer and AIDS, between animal experimentation and genetic engineering of viruses, between biological warfare technology and drug companies, between gay experiments and AIDS, between vaccine programs and the contamination of the nation's blood supply. Why else would all these people from diverse areas of science be attending this high level government conference?
Despite the denial of the medical authorities, there was a connection between Szmuness' gay experiment and the outbreak of AIDS in American cities. It wasn't my imagination. And it wasn't a coincidence.
The more I studied the hepatitis B experiment, the more the connections to biological warfare and genocide became apparent.
(Exerpted from QUEER BLOOD: The Secret AIDS Genocide Plot by Alan Cantwell, Jr. M.D.