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The truth about Spanish flu: A man-made medical disaster


THERE is no doubt that the Spanish influenza pandemic of 1918-1919 was used as a primer for Covid-19. Approaching the centenary of the contagion, the US Centers of Disease Control (CDC – cynically dubbed ‘Crime and Death Corporation’) ensured that it was kept at the forefront of public health policy. This warning from history, with the dreadful death toll of twenty, fifty or a hundred million (varying by source) was emphasised in the disease scares of the new millennium.   

At the time, those of religious persuasion attributed the Spanish flu to the wrath of God as the most devastating war raged in Europe. In an unusual manifestation, it was fit young men (thus combatants) who were the most likely to succumb

The truth about Spanish flu is very different from the official narrative: it was neither Spanish, nor was influenza the cause of death. In 2008 a press release by the US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) stated: ‘Bacteriologic and histopathologic results from published autopsy series clearly and consistently implicated secondary bacterial pneumonia caused by common upper respiratory tract bacteria in most influenza fatalities.’ 

However, NIAID did not explain how such prevalent microbes so suddenly wiped out millions of people worldwide. Epidemiologist Karen Starko has postulated that the real culprit was one of the most frequently prescribed drugs in modern medicine: aspirin. 

First synthesised from coal tar by Felix Hoffman at Bayer’s laboratories just before the First World War, aspirin appeared to be a ‘wonder drug’. Although mostly used today for analgesia and blood-thinning prevention of cardiovascular disease, initially it was presented as a panacea in the same way that vaccines are regarded today.

When the patent expired in 1917, Bayer launched a major marketing campaign extolling the virtues of its ‘pure’ product. This drew more attention to thedrug, and as the US entered the First World War vast supplies were purchased for prophylactic use inthe millions of men sent to fight the Germans.

In the early autumn of 1918, as the German offensive was sweeping across the Allied lines, a severe respiratory disease was killing American recruits. Troopships arrived at Cherbourg with as many as a third of the human cargo expired. According to Starko, soldiers and sailors were dropping like flies because the presumed cure was actually the cause. The more deaths from the so-called Spanish flu, the more aspirin was doled out to servicemen and citizens alike. 

Starko’s explanation is that high doses of aspirin shattered their immune systems. The spread of buccal and nasal bacteria to the lungs, unchecked by bodily immunity, caused respiratory crisis. But as Starko noted, a post-mortem feature of sudden deaths was haemorrhagic lungs, directly incriminating aspirin. A young man could be fit and healthy at breakfast and dead by supper. 

To understand this iatrogenic disaster, and why the US military was so keen to medicate its entire forces, we must consider the role of oil baron J D Rockefeller. The Rockefeller Foundation was instrumental in transforming medicine from holistic treatment to drugs of petrochemical manufacture. As I argue in Green in Tooth and Claw, the goal was not only to treat illness but to control society (as fictionalised in the ubiquitous use of ‘Soma’ in Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World).

The Rockefeller Institute for Medical Research, founded in New York in 1901, gave substantial funding to the American Medical Association to reform medical practice and education. The resulting report by the Flexner Commission in 1910 concluded that medical training was inconsistent and outmoded. Schools teaching herbal medicine and naturopathy would be refused accreditation, and hemp and other natural extracts were replaced by patented medication. The curriculum instilled Rockefeller’s model of allopathic medicine (a term for modern or mainstream medicine)and the focus on pills rather than nutrition and healthy lifestyle has prevailed ever since.  

The Rockefeller Institute played a prominent role in the Spanish flu outbreak by denouncing herbal remedies, homeopathy and the recently discovered vitamins. It had powerful influence not only on the medical establishment but also on the press, ensuring that Spanish flu was reported as a viral killer. This has continued to be  exploited by the pharmaceutical industry and public health regime, as J Holcombe, D Jacobson and T Ruhl explained a few years before Covid-19: ‘Since that time, medical authorities, international health agencies and governments have attributed the deaths to a frighteningly virulent virus. That view has formed the basis for a great threat: that the world faces future pandemics of equal virulence, killing millions. Agencies have been created, international plans have been developed, and pandemic emergency laws have been written with military backup included. Billions if not trillions of dollars have been devoted to finding a vaccine to protect the world from a recurrence.’

Holcombe, Jacobson and Ruhl speculated on why the official story of Spanish flu was given such prominence by the CDC:

1.    Hiding the role of Bayer and the pharmaceutical industry in the deaths 

2.    Developing the market for antiviral drugs and vaccines

3.    Harnessing of government to medical expertise

4.    Comprehensive regulation of medicinal products and suppression of natural remedies

5.    Industrialisation, commercialisation and militarisation of disease

6.    Boosting the media appeal of ‘heroic’ medicine

7.    Raising the spectre of millions of deaths to maintain public fear and compliance

8.    Paving the way for future declaration of pandemic emergency and martial law

The US medical adviser Anthony Fauci personified the draconian health regime of masking, social distancing, mass testing and vaccination. Setting aside debate about whether Covid-19 was naturalistic, engineered or a hoax, the mRNA injections were certainly real, with deadly outcomes. Intriguingly, a competing explanation for the Spanish flu is an experimental vaccine used in 1918. 

At Fort Riley barracks in Kansas, soldiers training for action in France were subjects in a trial of inoculation for bacterial meningitis. The bacteria were cultured in horses by the Rockefeller Institute for Medical Research, and injected into recruits from January to June 1918. Eleanor McBean, in her book Vaccination Condemned, claimed that meningitis was then spread by vaccinated troops on the Atlantic crossing and in the towns and trenches of the Western Front.

McBean’s theory is rebutted by fact-checkers, who state the evidence of pneumonia. But for sceptics, whether the culprit was catastrophic misuse of aspirin or a vaccine trial gone wrong, the Spanish flu may be more appropriately known as the Rockefeller Plague. 

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