Thursday, May 17, 2007

May 16 Flu Update

CIDRAP reports. Now that the Indonesians have resumed sending samples, WHO has cleared out a backlog of 15 cases that had not been included in official counts. 13 were fatal. (These are all 2007 cases).

Official known H5N1 death toll is 185.

CIDRAP on this case, as well.

Effect Measure on the Indonesian situation. Says by holding virus back, they make it likely no one gets a vaccine--them included.
Effect Measure also looks at the real vaccine gap--in true Revere fashion, concluded something that large is beyond math.

Helen Branswell writes that Canada is stockpiling bird flu vaccine--for birds. Like most measures, it appears to be a holding measure to buy time.

Local governments are urged to work hard on bird flu in Vietnam.

Chan pledges again that WHO will get vaccine to poor countries.

64 farms are screened in Ghana.

Black market anti-virals seized in Burma.

They are training for a pandemic in Rock County, WI.


At 6:03 PM, Blogger Wulfgang said...


Several of Revere’s recent commentaries about Indonesia and China, have been extraordinarily accurate assessments of their failure to provide viral isolate strains. The indefensible ruse being exploited by both countries at the current time, is a certain pathway for self destruction – a “winner take all” ploy that is completely self-serving at the present time.

If the issue of supplying viral isolate samples were limited to normal seasonal type A or B influenza, then the risks to the world population would, of course, be quite limited and the situation would be superfluous. No one would be paying attention. However, the threat of a novel H5 type virus has such an extensive contagiousness and infectiousness risk, that up-to-date evolving strains are a necessity, in order for the world to develop a viable pandemic vaccine with antibody protection, in advance.

Both countries have continuously failed to provide the necessary genetic sequences from patients, and have failed to even report cases on a timely basis. Both countries exhibit the same troublesome dilemma’s: out-of-control unreported internal epidemics in animals, poultry, and multiple clusters of suspected human cases.

In my opinion, both countries are extorting the UN, FAO and WHO – essentially, saying “if you don’t provide me with the resources, monetary loans, grants, antiviral’s, vaccines and manufacturing production capability, on my terms and conditions, then we will give you a pandemic and we will all suffer together”. It’s like a thief who takes a hostage, and will not stop robbing you, until you pay him ransom.

There will be no solution or end to this current dilemma, because there is no end to the ideological, religious and cultural blackmail being employed.

Their collective actions are not about fair and equitable international vaccine production, policy and assurance of vaccines. It centers around their perceived control, advantages to themselves, and power, on the world stage.

With Indonesia, it’s not really about “fairness” between “rich and poor” countries, it’s all about religious culture and mistrust of the western world and free enterprise.

With China, it’s not really about “openness and transparency”, it’s all about repressive communistic government culture, and mistrust of western democracies.

During the 1950’s, 60’s and 70’s, this standoff situation involved communism, and was dubbed the “cold war”, and it’s representative moniker was MAD, or “Mutually Assured Destruction”. Today, the standoff still continues, with different countries, involving viruses, and the outcome is still MAD.

I hope I am wrong, however, I see the H5N1 situation playing out very badly due to their recalcitrance. Once the virus, or its close cousin, begins emerging into a pandemic, it will be too late for any country in the world to “prepare in advance”, with a suitable tested vaccine. The psychological terror, unnecessary deaths, economic and social consequences, that these two countries will have created, will be incalculable.

As during the cold war era, when we practiced retreating to bomb shelters, now we are going to have to once again be prepared to retreat into our own homes, as our only form of sanctuary.

In my view, it is time for the all western nations, as well as the UN, WHO and FAO, to accept this inevitability, acknowledge this fact, unite together and proceed as rapidly as possibility to plan for an imminent pandemic and bypass these two uncooperative countries.

They are almost guaranteeing a holocaust, by their mistrust, paranoia and lack of honesty.



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