Gurli Bagnall

“In a country where the Auditor-General cheats, judges fiddle expenses,big business leadership says it has no charitable obligationsat all and MPs empower themselves and reimburse themselves indulgently, sententiousold stinkers make jokes of themselves when they drone on about family values.They should be telling their mates to get their heads out of the trough.”

Gordon McLaughlan (columnist)

“How dare shams and cheats preach values?”

New Zealand Herald on 19 April, 1994

By way of introduction, think of the times you have heard or read in the media, of officialdom’s puzzlement and concern over the “unexplainable” escalation of the diabetes epidemic. Well, puzzle no more! Officialdom’s perplexed frowning is but a façade that comes under the heading of “How to increase your business potential”.

Diuretics, one of the most commonly prescribed drugs for treatment of hypertension, cause an 11-fold increase in diabetes. (British Medical Journal 1994: 308:855.)

Have you been lectured at and made to feel guilty by your doctor for being overweight? For having a high cholesterol level? Or for having a “life style” that has turned you into a sitting duck for heart disease? Well, think again. “People taking certain drugs for schizophrenia, manic-depression, autism, dementia, or several other psychiatric disorders should be carefully watched for signs they are developing diabetes, obesity or high cholesterol, four medical societies say.” (CBS News January 27, 2004) (It is worthy of note that physical conditions are commonly misdiagnosed as mental disorders and inappropriately treated.)

When I was young, we had national pride in our excellent health and education systems; there were jobs for all and most New Zealanders could afford their own homes with a set mortgage rate of 3%. When abroad, we boasted that in New Zealand, Jack was as good as his master, and we respected our politicians for their wisdom and integrity.

At the end of the second world war, we reacted with horror when we learnt of the extermination camps in Europe and of the savage medical experimentation carried out on some of the inmates.

After the Nuremberg trials, we applauded the human rights charter that resulted from them, and believed such atrocities could never happen again.

We considered ourselves fortunate to live in countries such as NZ, the UK, Australia and the United States, where we were not chemically tortured, reduced to vegetative states and incarcerated in lunatic asylums for criticizing our governments, as were political dissidents in the USSR.

Before the advent of multi-nationals, New Zealanders did indeed have cause to be proud on some fronts. Women, for example, were the first in any democracy to be given the right to vote - even though in other respects, their legal rights remained those of minors.

But as the years became decades, a variety of social injustices surfaced and when the bubble finally burst, we did not want to believe that we had been duped and brainwashed. Those who spoke out, were sneered at for being “conspiracy theorists from the chattering classes”.

We saw that Jack was not, after all, as good as his master for white collar crime often attracts judicial and other official leniencies not extended to those from the “chattering classes” who commit the same offences.

We found that when national corporations cheated New Zealand out of millions of dollars by using the Cook Islands as a tax haven, they received political protection. To add insult to injury, the Cook Islands has for many years, received generous annual contributions from the NZ tax payer to keep their little Pacific nation financially viable.

We noted that the donations made by the corporations in question to the two major political parties, were payments for the purchase of our democratic process. From the mid 1980s and into the 1990s, first the Labour Government and then the National Government ruled the country with identical policies for which they had no mandate; policies that had been devised by the self-serving corporations and which were sprung upon the unsuspecting citizens of NZ without warning. They resulted in multiple small business bankruptcies, reduced wages, mass unemployment, reduced state benefits and pensions, and an unprecedented escalation in suicides along with a dramatic and unsustainable rise in the need for emergency housing and food parcels.

When the then Prime Minister, Jim Bolger, and his colleagues failed in their effort to sweep the mess under the carpet, he proposed that, since the practice of corporate tax avoidance had ceased when it was brought to the public’s attention about two years previously, we should all forget about it. He was impatient and peeved because we would not accept his word that it was water under the bridge. With the collective corporate finger prodding him in the back, he exhorted us to stop nit-picking.

But out on the streets, Joe Bloggs knew that had HE attempted to cheat the IRD out of even $100, no statute of limitations would be created especially for HIM. He would have been penalized most severely and out of all proportion to the amount involved.

Despite the human rights charter and officialdom’s declared abhorrence of the medical experimentation that had occurred in the Nazi concentration camps during World War 2, both the UK and the US were busy conducting their own secret and cruel experimentation on unwitting citizens.

Porton Down was set up in the UK after World War 1 as a germ warfare research center and here volunteers were deceived as to the true nature of the testing to which they were being subjected:

“We now know that some 20,000 servicemen were duped into volunteering for research into the common cold and then used in the most horrendous experiments with nerve gas and all sorts of things, We know that 40 people were injected with the biological warfare agent Kyasanur Forest Monkey (KFM) disease in 1968. That was apparently done to see if it was of therapeutic value to Leukemia patients. The KFM disease has a 28% fatality rate and causes horrible painful encephalitis in humans. Why was Porton Down involved in this search for a leukemia therapy…? It is (sic) a coincidence that just three years later KFM became a recognized biological warfare agent? “ (Liz Sigmund)

“They put us in the gas chambers. We tested CS gas…I had no idea what they were doing - as far as I was concerned they were doing common cold research tests. …In one test we had to stand in front of a stream of gas which I could not stand for more than a minute. My face was stinging, my throat was red raw and my lungs were burning. I was paid two shillings. It was a dirty trick, plain and simple.” (Gordon Bell - airman at Porton Down in the 1950s)

“I have seen evidence which…..seems to suggest that there is a certain section of the Ministry of Defence which uses elderly people as guinea pigs for the experiments and quietly puts them to death afterwards. It is carefully hidden by the Official Secrets Act” (Monsignor John Barry)

“My husband William Dyer was 19 when he was paid a shilling a day to crawl through a field sprayed with radioactive chemical wearing overalls and afterwards he was scanned for radiation levels. He died the day after his 49th birthday in 1987 of Hodgkin’s Disease - cancer of the lymph nodes. They volunteered for what they thought was simple tests. They were young and wanted to earn a few extra bob - but now look at the price they paid.” (Jeanette Dyer, widow of William - Somerset Light Infantry soldier.)

“In other experiments we ran through boggy fields and were sprayed by light aircraft with substances that burnt our eyes and skin and left blisters. I still love England and the Army and I can even forgive them for what they did, but I want them to admit what they have done to women as well as men.”

(Mrs. Pat Cunningham - sergeant, 24th Heavy Mixed –Aircraft Training Regiment.)

For more information, see:

In the USA, 46 incidents of secret human experimentation commencing in 1932, are listed at:

The following are a few examples.

“1945 Project Paperclip is initiated. The U.S. State Department, Army Intelligence, and the CIA recruit Nazi scientists and offer them immunity and secret identities in exchange for work on top secret government projects in the United States.”

“1946 Patients in VA hospitals are used as guinea pigs for medical experiments. In order to allay suspicions, the order is given to change the word “experiments” to “investigations” or “observations” whenever reporting a medical study performed in one of the nation’s veteran’s hospitals.”

“1950 In an experiment to determine how susceptible an American city would be to biological attack, the U.S. Navy sprays a cloud of bacteria from ships over San Francisco. Monitoring devices are situated throughout the city in order to test the extent of infection. Many residents become ill with pneumonia-like symptoms.”

“1953 military releases clouds of zinc cadmium sulfide gas over Winnipeg, St. Louis, Minneapolis, Fort Wayne, the Monocacy River Valley in Maryland, and Leesburg, Virginia. Their intent is to determine how efficiently they could disperse chemical agents.”

“1953 CIA initiates Project MKULTA. This is an eleven year research program designed to produce and test drugs and biological agents that would be used for mind control and behavior modification. Six of the subprojects involved testing agents on unwitting human beings.”

“1956 U.S. military releases mosquitoes infected with Yellow Fever over Savannah, Ga and Avon Park, Fl. Following each test, army agents posing as public health officials test victims for effects.”

“1965 CIA and Department of Defense begin Project MKSEARCH, a program to develop capability to manipulate human behavior through use of mind-altering drugs.”

“1966 U.S. Army dispenses Bacillus subtilis variant niger throughout the New York subway system. More than a million civilians are exposed when army scientists drop lightbulbs filled with the bacteria onto ventilation grates.”

“1995 Dr. Garth Nicolson, uncovers evidence that the biological agents used during the Gulf War had been manufactured in Houston, TX and Boca Raton, Fl and tested on prisoners in the Texas Department of Corrections.”


Democratic governments, the pharmaceutical industry and the medical profession have and are perpetrating crimes on a scale that is hard to believe. Many of the “experts” in the field have become wealthy as a result yet no one is held accountable. There is one law for them, and another for their victims.

During the past year, there has been a great deal of publicity about the adverse effects of the prozac type antidepressants - the Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs). While the publicity is welcome and much needed, the degree to which the media has concentrated on these drugs in particular, gives the erroneous impression that this is the first time the pharmaceutical industry has tried to hide dangers associated with their products. The fact is that the SSRIs are but one incident as indeed are the benzodiazepines - but both are incidents that have adversely affected millions on a global scale.

On 30 August, 2004, Michael Behan presented his submission to the Inquiry by the UK House of Commons Health Select Committee into the Influence of the Pharmaceutical Industry. (The full document may be seen at Scroll down to “UK Info” on the left hand side of the screen and look for “The benzodiazepines: The Health Select Commission submission.”)

Behan’s submission highlights that the drug industry, aided and abetted by the medical profession and governments, have been destroying lives and killing people with impunity for a very long time. Clearly, the USSR did not have the monopoly on chemical torture. The difference is that in the democratic world, those targeted were and are innocent citizens.

The benzodiazepine (BZD) drugs first appeared on the market in the early 1960s. Behan’s submission concerned these drugs and in particular Ativan which belongs to the group. Ativan is recommended by the manufacturer, John Wyeth, as an anxiolytic and sedative.

Of Wyeth, Behan states:

“They are confident that their influence is so strong that they possess a complete defensive shield - in the legal system, in the regulatory system and the Government Departments and can never be held accountable for the actions.”

Of the Government he states:

“Control of psychotropic drugs has been infiltrated by regulators, advisers and self-styled experts who promote the agenda, the ideas and the products of the drug manufacturers to the department of public health.”

Of his personal experience, Behan states:

“I suffered side-effects whilst ingesting Ativan and severe withdrawal symptoms during the tapering period. Many of these symptoms have persisted ever since, particularly neurological and musculo-skeletal symptoms, and I now believe that they represent permanent damage.”

Of Ativan itself he states:

“Ativan is one of the most addictive drugs known to man, a three year withdrawal (tapering of dose to zero) from the prescribed dose may be necessary, 12 months withdrawal is common. Benzodizepine addiction is a physical addiction….If the benzo chemical is removed or reduced the nervous system cannot operate properly. The natural chemicals may regenerate slowly or not at all. Unfortunately benzodiazepines are poisonous. They insidiously poison the body and its organs.”

Of research into benzodiazepines, Behan states:

“The drug companies (sic) own documents show the UK benzodiazepine scandal to be the intended outcome of the manufacturers [i.e.] mass addiction.”

Of the prognosis, Behan states:

“No Ativan Data sheet in any jurisdiction warns that there is no known cure or treatment for Benzodiazepine damage.”

Of the attempted litigation against the manufacturers of Ativan and also Valium, he states:

“I was [part of the] litigation against the manufacturers John Wyeth and Brother and Roche Products. The litigation ran from 1986 to 1996 with a peak of 17,000 complaints. The plaintiffs alleged that the manufacturers were negligent in failing to give adequate warnings of the dangers associated with their products. The manufacturer delayed and complicated the proceedings to the point that the Legal Aid Board could no longer meet the expense of the litigation. Each side spent more that £35m yet not one minute of court time was spent on the merits of the case; the time and the money was spent on technical motions and procedural wranglings. Under pressure from the defendants the LAB withdrew funding from the litigation.”

“The Legal Aid Board was disbanded in the wake of the benzo litigation and reconstituted as the Legal Services Commission with a new set of regulations designed to exclude the possibility of any similar litigation occurring again.”

Of conflicts of interest, Behan states:

“We asked Bob Ainsworth [Home Office Minister] to consider re-scheduling and re-classifying benzodiazepines and he invited us to prepare a submission to the Home Office Advisory Council of the Misuse of Drugs (ACMD)…. which is chaired by Professor David Nutt, a key Government adviser and regulator….We received a refusal letter from the Home Office in April 2000.”

“Professor Nutt has financial links with John Wyeth. In the 2001 CSM Declaration of Interest, Nutt declares an ‘Honorarium’ and a non-personal grant from benzo manufacturers John Wyeth. He did not declare that interest in his dealings with us.”

“Professor Nutt chaired a recent …review on SSRIs which found them to be safe. [Later it was revealed] by the Guardian [that he had] financial links to GlaxoSmithKline, as had two out of three of the other members of the review committee.”

While the drug industry is the driving force, their willing lap dogs from the medical profession are on the front line doing their dirty work. But it still takes political complicity and protection for their profit driven activities to succeed.

Case histories repeatedly tell of medical ridicule, physical and mental abuse of the individual, accusations of personality disorders, abuse of power, the prescribing of multiple toxic drugs on an experimental basis, and even admittance to mental institutions to “treat” the iatrogenic disease by electro-shock “therapy”.

For those who have been able to wean themselves off these drugs, the results have been anything from very slow recovery (sometimes over a period of many years), to permanent illness and disability, to death - results of actions that in other circumstances, would have been labeled physical torture, mental torture, assault, grievous bodily harm, and murder.

In the US, it is no secret that President Bush and many senators have financial interests in the drug industry.

Drug company, “Eli Lilly…. has multiple ties to the Bush Administration. George Bush Sr was a member of Lilly’s board of directors and Bush Jr appointed Lillys’s chief executive officer, Sydney Taurel, to a seat on the Homelands Security Council. Lilly made $1.6m in political contributions in 2000 - 82% of which went to Bush and the Republican Party.” (“Smoke and Mirrors: The Texas Medication Algorithm Project”. Author and Whistleblower: Allen Jones - who sought the protection of the federal courts to write this document.)

So was it just a co-incidence that legislation was passed in the US in 2004 to facilitate the testing of every man, woman and child for mental disorders and to treat “where necessary” with “state of the art” medications? (New Freedom Commission on Mental Health Act. British Medical Journal, 19 June, 2004.) It seems not, for protective measures denying legal recourse to victims of such a blatant profit seeking policy, is already in the pipeline . On March 5, 2004, The National Law Journal reported:

“Under the Bush administration, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has adopted a novel legal strategy that would, if successful, leave many consumers claiming injury from pharmaceuticals or medical devices with no recourse to tort law..…Almost as troubling is the fact that pre-emption would close off one of the few avenues by which outsiders learn of safety and efficacy information that pharmaceutical companies do not publish…”

There are however signs that the tide might be turning. In recent times, and despite the inevitable retaliatory actions they knew they would face, whistleblowers within the medical profession and even the pharmaceutical industry, have spoken out.

“I told my supervisor, ‘These drugs are killing people. Something’s wrong here.’ Then they fired me,’ said Kruszewski, 53, a Harvard Medical School graduate…Kruszewski’s federal whistleblower lawsuit was filed in Harrison on Friday.” (Lawsuit: State fires shrink for exposing abuse.” Philadelphia Daily News.)

“The evidence of bias in medical reports is undeniable. It’s time to break the industry’s hold over the testing of its own products…Talk of ‘miracles’ and ‘innovation’ is no substitute for evidence.” (Marcia Angell – former editor in chief of the New England Journal of Medicine. The Washington Post, August 12, 2004.)

“New Cases of Scientific Abuse by Administration Emerge. Thousands More Scientists Join Protest.” (Union of Concerned Scientists, July 8, 2004. )

“The Bush administration has repeatedly manipulated the scientific process and distorted or suppressed scientific findings to advance political and ideological interest, according to a report by House democrats.” (The Scientist, August 13, 2003)

“’You’ve got the fox in charge of the henhouse,” DeAngelis said in an interview. ‘The pharmaceutical industry spent $4.9 million in 2003 to lobby the FDA. That’s like saying, I’m going to lobby the police department to keep cousin Guido from getting arrested for bootlegging.’” (Philadelphia Inquirer, 23 Nov. 2004)

“With financial ties to nearly two dozen drug and biotech companies, Dr. Charles B. Nemeroff may hold some sort of record among academic clinicians for the most conflicts of interest. A psychiatrist, a prominent researcher, and chairman of the department of psychiatry and behavioural science at Emory University in Atlanta. Nemeroff receives funding for his academic research with from Eli Lilly, AstraZeneca, Pfizer, Wyeth-Ayerst - indeed from virtually every pharmaceutical house that manufactures a drug to treat mental illness. He also serves as a consultant to drug and biotech companies, owns their stocks, and is a member of several speakers’ bureaus, delivering talks - for a fee - to other physicians on behalf of the companies’ products.” (Doctors without borders. Washington Monthly, April 2004.

As an adviser to the Ministry of Defence, UK psychiatrist, Professor Simon Wessely, leads a band of followers of the “Wessely school” who espouse the theory that adverse reactions to chemicals, whether ingested, inhaled or through skin contact, are hysteria, and if many are affected, mass hysteria. This advice has to date, served the MoD well for it has protected the Ministry from claims for compensation. Hopefully that may not be for too much longer for the self-professed “experts” have, during the past months, received a healthy serving of egg in the face.

It started with the following report:

“The High Court in London refused last week to overturn a ruling that officially recognised for the first time the existence of Gulf war syndrome…..Mr. Justice Newman dismissed an appeal by the Ministry of Defence against a decision last year by a war pensions appeal tribunal…” The British Medical Journal (21 June, 2003; 326:1350)

Since then, an increasing number of articles have appeared in regard to the physical nature of this disease. For example:

“The [U.S.] Defence Department must immediately stop inoculating troops with anthrax vaccine, a federal judge ruled yesterday, saying that the Food and Drug Administration acted improperly when it approved the experimental injections for general use. “ (Washington Post, 28 October, 2004.)

“Gulf War Illness linked to neurotoxins.” (The American Association for the Advancement of Science”)

“Blunted circadian variation in autonomic regulation of sinus node function in veterans with Gulf War syndrome.” (The American Journal of Medicine, Volume 117, Issue 7, 1 October, 2004, Pages 469-478)

“U.S. in U-turn over Gulf War Syndrome…..the US authorities have changed their stance, prompted by a recent American research which suggests is a disease with a physical basis linked to chemical exposure in the Gulf.” (, 3 November, 2004.)

“MoD admits Gulf War mistakes…..The MoD acknowledged that the it had not been open about its anti biological warfare vaccination programme which included giving many of the frontline troops a cocktail of injections to counter anthrax, plague and other bio-chemical attacks.” (TimesOnLine, 8 November,2004)

“An independent inquiry into illness among veterans of the 1991 Gulf war has concluded that it is ‘beyond reasonable doubt’ that Gulf war veterans face an extra burden of disease. ‘The government ought now, in fairness, and not before time, to accept that the illnesses were caused by their deployment,’ said Lord Lloyd of Berwick, chairman of the Gulf war illness public inquiry.” (British Medical Journal, 27 November, 2004;329:1257)

With a high profile in the Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME) area as well as GWS, the Wessely school has close ties with the health insurance industry. For example, UNUM employs psychiatrist, Michael Sharpe, in the capacity of medical adviser on matters relating to ME. It was he who gave UNUM the excuse it needed to reject claims from sufferers of the disease, causing much distress and hardship in the process.

Sharpe’s article “Functional Symptoms and Syndromes: recent developments” appeared in the UNUM Provident publication “Trends in Health and Disability 2002. His theme is encapsulated in the following quote:

“The majority will meet criteria for depressive or anxiety disorders and most of the remainder for somitisation disorders of which hypochondriasis and somatoform disorders..…There is strong evidence that symptoms and disability are shaped by psychological factors. Especially important are the patients’ beliefs and fears about their symptoms….The current system of state benefits, insurance payments and litigation remain potentially major obstacles to effective rehabilitation.”

The tide has certainly turned for this particular insurance company and its “adviser” on ME. In the US during the past year, millions of dollars have been awarded to claimants who alleged that UNUM had a policy of rejecting claims without proper consideration, and cheating them of their rightful entitlements. One of the litigants was an ME sufferer (the condition is also known as chronic fatigue syndrome), who was awarded $US11.6 million in back payments, punitive damages, and pain and suffering. (Las Vegas Sun December 15, 2004.)

Authorities hold the power, and those of its members who benefit from abuse of that power and their violation of human rights, are shams, cheats and, in some instances, murderers. They are common criminals who have devised a system of self protection from prosecution not available to the rest of society. None of us are immune and in the interests of keeping ourselves safe from harm, and as citizens of democratic countries, it is up to each of us to resist the bullying tactics of these criminals and do whatever we can individually to outlaw the above practices.