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BMJ was misled, apologizes to Dr Rath


But who fed the BMJ false information?

Sleazy actions abound in defense of weak HIV∫AIDS paradigm

Vitamin booster and somewhat loopy world savior Dr. Matthias Rath is still in South Africa, and taking on all comers, even though leading HIV∫AIDS dissenting scientist Dr David Rasnick has returned to the USA, having understandably found him impossible to work for.

Only two weeks ago, Rath leveled a law suit against the British Medical Journal for slander, and today he got results. BMJ backed down, withdrawing the story from its site and issuing an apology.

However, it is not clear at all what the specific falsehoods were, since the original story is gone and they are not specified in the apology, and there is no mention yet of the affair on Rath’s site, which now claims that Bill Gates and Warren Buffett were reacting to Rath’s prediction of pharmacollapse with their recent global charity initiatives (a two year graph shows how many visits from Microsoft the site has collected).

Here’s how the story was described by Knowledgespeak, in its story two weeks ago, “Dutch doctor takes BMJ to court with libel charges – 15 Sep 2006:

Titled ‘Vitamins promoter goes on trial for fraud’, the article is about an alternative medicine doctor, who is blamed for the death of a nine-year-old boy with bone cancer. According to the story, the doctor is sent on trial for fraud in Germany for convincing the boy’s parents to reject conventional medical treatments, and use a ‘miracle cure’ rich in vitamins. The story, which was available online until recently, has been removed on legal advice.

(show)

Dr. Matthias Rath of the Netherlands has reportedly filed a lawsuit against BMJ Publishing Group for having published a story in the British Medical Journal, which he alleges is defamatory. He is seeking compensation of over £300,000 for the article published in the July edition of the journal. He has also sought an injunction to prevent any repetition of the allegations.

Titled ‘Vitamins promoter goes on trial for fraud’, the article is about an alternative medicine doctor, who is blamed for the death of a nine-year-old boy with bone cancer. According to the story, the doctor is sent on trial for fraud in Germany for convincing the boy’s parents to reject conventional medical treatments, and use a ‘miracle cure’ rich in vitamins. The story, which was available online until recently, has been removed on legal advice.

Following Dr. Rath’s publicity campaigns, several people have reportedly been giving up antiretroviral drugs to opt for vitamin supplements.

Seems that the BMJ were advised by their lawyers to back down in a hurry, and now they have done so.

Here is the page at BMJ where they have also removed the offending libel – the vanished article page – and here is
28.09.2006″>the BMJ Rath apology page
.

Oh, good, we see it does give the false allegations:

In a news item published in the 22 July 2006 issue of the BMJ (2006;333:166) and on the bmj.com website, it was reported that Dr Matthias Rath had gone on trial in Hamburg “for fraud.”

In this context we suggested that Dr Rath stood accused of the serious crime of fraud in relation to the death in 2004 of Dominik Feld, a 9 year old boy with bone cancer; that he was culpably responsible for Dominik Feld’s death; and, in particular, that he had improperly pressured Dominik Feld’s parents into refusing to allow hospital doctors to amputate the boy’s infected leg in an effort to save him.

We now accept that the allegations we published were without foundation, and in the circumstances the BMJ wishes to set the record straight and to apologise to Dr Rath for publishing these allegations.

Sites such as Health-e which wrote stories based on the BMJ report have also withdrawn the story and apologized to Rath. A search for cached versions on Google shows that most or all of them have been removed.

Defending science with personal smears

Well, fine. A rather unexpected victory, given the circumstances, and the tendency for courts to credit ruling paradigms and conventional medicine as gospel truth, which makes one think the law will never give medical mavericks a fair shake. Whether Dr Rath has the right idea or the wrong idea, or even the right idea for the wrong reasons (we think more the latter), he should not be libelled.

But the residual important question is, who fed the BMJ the wrong information? Could it have been the South African activists who have been trying to drum him out of town? Was John Moore of Cornell involved in any way?

And will Moore et al’s scurrilously misleading AIDS information site, AIDSTruth also now carry this news item?

Poison pen letters as a weapon of science

Just how far are the sleazy group of second tier paradigm defenders prepared to go in combating their rivals on non-intellectual grounds? We note with interest that they indulge in sending letters to the employers of dissenters, hoping to silence them that way. This is a trick which most decent men and women wouldn’t think of, but which has been tried recently in three cases we know of.

Luckily in each case the employer didn’t take very long to work out why he or she was in receipt of such a puerile and perfidious attempt at backstabbing. After all, any sane person immediately recognizes how weak a scientific position has to be, if it must be defended with political means, especially with such ungentlemanly and crude capers.

It reminds us of a letter we were shown years ago by an MIT professor who had offended a certain Nobel prize winner by objecting to his joining the faculty. A libelous piece of trash written behind his back, it had taken a year for him to hear about it.

This kind of behind the back detraction is a standard ploy among the second rate who manoever for position which they do not merit. Scientists who are above board because they deserve their prizes and the respect and position they have earned often have no idea what is going on, and can hardly credit it when they are told.

One known perpetrator in HIV∫AIDS is John Moore of Cornell, and there are others, such as Nancy Padian, and Richard Jefferys, who have defended the paradigm in this way. But of course with Dr Anthony Fauci of NIAID censoring scientific or media review of the conventional wisdom from the very beginning of the HIV∫AIDS era twenty two years ago, perhaps they are merely following his lead and feel that their truth is a Holy War in which the Geneva Convention rules may be ignored.

9 Responses to “BMJ was misled, apologizes to Dr Rath”

  1. kevin Says:

    One more thing…I love the graphic with the BBC article…the one declaritively subtitled “HIV attacks immune cells”. How can you have a graphic illustrating that “attack” when the supporting article suggests that attack is indirect. I guess an “indirect” graphic might be misleading and cause misunderstanding, lol.

  2. kevin Says:

    Oops….the above comment is for a different article. Help?

    While I’m here…way to go Dr. Rath. Way to take those slimey editors to task for their slanderous drivel.

  3. Celia Farber Says:

    This is the most important story I have read about the AIDS war in a while. My blood ran cold when I read it, and I salute Truthseeker for the excellent reportage. As somebody who has been subject to slander, libel, attack, subversion, betrayal, and more, I have never found a satisfactory answer to my burning questions about what recourse a professional can take in these situations. Adding insult to injury, most people discourage the one affected by libel and slander from taking action, always citing that abstracted belief–the standard necessary to prove “damage.”

    My question is, what good does it to Rath that they retracted it? The damage is done. Will he or can he sue the guilty party for damages? Will he or can he compel them to show the world how, when, why and based on what “evidence” they published the spectacularly damaging libel against the man? An apology, to my mind, is woefully insufficient. Does anybody here know anything about libel laws?

  4. Truthseeker Says:

    Here is the story Health-e cached on the topic, signaled by a NYC correspondent, since the original story in the BMJ is securely locked up now.

    Rath on trial for fraud in Germany
    by Kerry Cullinan
    24.07.2006

    Controversial vitamin seller Dr Matthias Rath has gone on trial for fraud in Germany after he convinced the parents of a boy with bone cancer to reject conventional medicine and use his “miracle cure” vitamin pills instead, according to the British Medical Journal (BMJ).

    Dr. Matthias Rath

    Cape Times

    Dr Rath has raised a legal complaint about the truth of this story, which we are investigating.

    Controversial vitamin seller Dr Matthias Rath has gone on trial for fraud in Germany after he convinced the parents of a boy with bone cancer to reject conventional medicine and use his “miracle cure” vitamin pills instead, according to the British Medical Journal (BMJ).

    In this country, Rath claims that his vitamins can “reverse AIDS” and he encourages South Africans living with HIV not to go take “poisonous antiretroviral drugs”.

    Rath faces charges in a Hamburg court of falsely advertising his pills as a cure for cancer and contravening German laws by offering his vitamin products online without legal permission.

    Nine-year-old Dominik Feld was diagnosed with cancer in the bone of his right thigh in 2002. A few months later, his parents stopped their son’s chemotherapy and switched to Rath’s vitamins. They also refused to allow doctors to amputate his leg which had become riddled with cancer.

    However, doctors treating the boy were granted a court order allowing them, not his parents, to supervise his care in November 2003.

    This order was overturned on appeal in March 2004 and Dominik was returned to his parents’ care. He died in an alternative health clinic in November that year.

    Describing chemotherapy as “outmoded and inhuman”, Rath claims on his website that “Dominik did not die as a result of his cancer and metastasis of the lung, but rather as a result of a succession of medical errors made by doctors”.

    Rath adds that “it wasn’t the cancer that eventually defeated him; he was the victim of an antiquated medical system — one that wanted to exploit him to prove that cancer continues to be a death sentence.”

    Rath appeared briefly in the Hamburg court last week, but the case was postponed as the judge was ill.

    Dominik’s case received a lot of publicity in Germany and sales of Rath’s vitamins plummeted after Dominik died, according to a former staff member.

    Rath then came to South Africa and settled in Cape Town for a while where he linked up with prominent AIDS dissidents (people who don’t believe HIV causes AIDS) to undermine antiretroviral (ARV) treatment.

    He continues to promote his vitamins as an alternative to ARVs to South Africans with HIV through the SA National Civic Organisation.

    He apparently enjoys the protection of both Health Minister Manto Tshabalala-Msimang and her director-general, Thami Mseleku.

    Tshabalala-Msimang has refused to condemn Rath’s activities, while Mseleku recently intervened to release a consignment of Rath’s pills that had been seized by officials in Cape Town as they apparently contravened various regulations.

    The health department’s Charity Bhengu refused to comment on the matter.

    At the time of going to press, the Rath Foundation in South Africa had not responded to requests for comment.

  5. Truthseeker Says:

    Celia, surely the backing down by a medical journal of reputation is a big plus, since it endorses the probability that the rest of the world has been misreporting Rath, and opens people’s minds to the possibility of Rath being more than a crackpot and charlatan as readers had assumed, so they don’t swallow the smearing of the TAC and other hysterics. It wipes out preconceptions, while at the same time awakening open minded interest.

    No one sane really cares what the yellow press writes anyway.

  6. jspreen Says:

    The Matthias Rath/Dominik Feld case is Ryke Geerd Hamer/Olivia Pilhar revisited. Olivia Pilhar almost died in hospital after having been torn away from their parents who had put all their faith in Dr Hamer. The child was released after a dramatic and near fatal chemo treatment. Today, about ten years later, she’s alive and well. But, say doctors and main stream media, that’s only thanks to hospital treatment. Hamer is chased all over the place like a criminal.

    I’ve been watching “The Untouchables” last night. Medicine has become the Al Capone gang. How far are we ready to go ?

  7. Gene Semon Says:

    Answering the last question:

    Dr Rath’s micronutrient study is posted on his website as linked above and, of course, is subject to the review of any scientist who wants to legitimately knock him down. My bet is that it will withstand critical analysis.

    I happen to support his public statements; (sorry if this offends any Cheney-Rumsfeld-Rove-Bush supporters, but they have declared martial law, one disappearance at a time). If he’s made mistakes, this is inevitable when one assumes a leadership position.

    This study confirms the work of others (e.g. Roberto Giraldo) and leads to a no pharma solution to “AIDS” in developing countries (especially when you throw in sanitation, clean water, protein powders, green “superfoods”, etc); charitable foundations could initiate such programs.

    But this we now know would interfere with Mr. Gates’ investment strategies, (a surrogate for the global economy?).

    I’ve heard that if a cure for cancer was announced tomorrow, the economy would plunge into a depression due to the collapse of all interests “producing” disease management. The consequent devaluation of assets would be catastrophic and may explain the Gates and Clinton initiatives into Africa as an “opposite”, i.e. promoting economic expansion via the known and increasing values. All behind a facade of high ethics, which is why “denialists” are such persona non grata.

    Unfortunately, “alternative healthcare” may be a perceived risk to economic health, especially for the U.S.; (I hope this is wrong). The “gang” also has us behind the eight-ball in energy infrastructure and it’s more like Capone teaming up with everyone else since potential political solutions abound but never seem to get implemented.

    Until dissidents learn how to counteract “spin” and develop responsive political solutions beyond “left” and “right”, we will always be – like the Democrats – on the defensive.

    Sorry to be,

    Mr Gloom and Doom

  8. MacDonald Says:

    Mr. Gloom and Doom,

    I’m your second.

  9. Marcel Says:

    Gene,

    Hell yes, alternative health care is perceived as a risk to economic health of the mega corporations and the financiers behind them. That’s obvious.

    As for Dr. Rath, although I haven’t yet read all of this latest story about him, I do recall that someone, might have been Gene, a while back suggested that Rath’s newspaper ads were pretty crazy. I’d agree, they are, but I think it’s because he has no idea how to create an effective ad and comes across as a loony on a soapbox. (this from me, a former copywriter). It’s not because his heart isn’t in the right place. He needs professional help…not psychiatric but advertising.

    Also, based on something he said in an interview a few years back, he apparently sees through the phony “9-11” psyop and that’s very much to his credit.

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