Mosquito-borne encephalitis; malathion

Louis Proyect lnp3 at
Sat Nov 13 09:14:14 MST 1999

(I received this from Robert Lederman, a NY artist who has been involved
with progressive causes for many years--from gay liberation, ACTUP to
Nicaragua solidarity. He has been particularly key to recent struggles for
artist's rights under attack from right-wing Mayor Giuliani, who made a
cause celebre over a Madonna painting in the Brooklyn Museum by an African
artist that utilized cow dung. Lederman has also been in the forefront of
opposition to Malathion spraying, which was instituted to eradicate West
Nile type virus bearing mosquitoes. While some--including
Lederman--speculate that the epidemic was caused by a mishap at a
biological weapons testing lab, I believe that climate changes brought on
by global warming acting in combination with planet "shrinkage" brought on
by jet planes is a more likely culprit. Many in Lederman's camp also
believe that AIDS was produced originally by careless medical experiments,
including the author of widely reported article in a recent New Yorker


Dear media person,

I just found these very useful sites and highly recommend them
for exploration to anyone in the media. As you certainly have
noticed there is an ever increasing deluge of news stories on
bio-warfare, terrorism, vaccines, epidemics, encephalitis etc.
Unfortunately, the vast majority of these articles and TV pieces
are nothing more than government and pharmaceutical industry
propaganda directed at making the public open to the idea of
receiving new vaccines, being sprayed with insecticides and
otherwise preparing them for some very frightening scenarios.

The recent encephalitis "epidemic" here in NYC was a
textbook example of the media doing saturation coverage on an
issue while barely touching on any facts other than those issued
by the CDC, the DOD and the Mayor's OEM. What most
surprised me about the past few months of news coverage is
that with a home computer I was able to readily access more
info than one could read in a lifetime that refuted the entire
media and government spin on this issue. Most of what I
discovered that was especially interesting was from US
government and pharmaceutical company sites rather than
from anti-pesticide activists. Many reporters I spoke to
acknowledged that they'd read my own and other activists'
essays on the issue or had read documents such as the Mayor's
Chem-Bio handbook but that they then contacted one or two
"official experts" (those recommended by the Mayor's office)
who assured them that there was nothing to worry about, that
Malathion was in fact completely safe and so on. As this issue
developed from August to November documents, transcripts of
taped interviews with those who did the actual spraying, the
labels from the actual canisters of Malathion used and so on
proved beyond any possibility of doubt that the people of NYC
were being lied to in a highly coordinated manner. As of today
the media continues to ignore virtually all of this information,
and in my opinion, help hide it from the public. Just to be clear,
I don't consider including a sentence in each article that, "some
residents expressed fear" to be covering both sides.

Whether this lack of real coverage is from journalistic
skepticism, having deadlines to meet or because your
assignment editors don't want you to go too deeply into these
issues is something you know better than I. What I and many
others know for sure is that if we can get this info this readily,
so can you.

It's clear that various governmental agencies are preparing the
public for a lot of new things to come. As a reporter you will
be covering these issues regardless of whether you do local,
national or international news. If for no other reason that to
protect yourself and your own family don't you think you
should look at all the facts?
Robert Lederman (718) 369-2111
artistpres at

Go to:
d.html For a specific US government briefing on nerve agents
and the treatments given to the military during the Gulf War.
Has a lot on acetylcholine (the enzyme affected by Malathion
and other nerve agents).

Go to:
Department of Defense News an incredibly useful site if you
want to know what the military has planned re: nerve agents,
chemical warfare, vaccines etc.

Go to:
this has incredible media and info links, the best I've ever seen
and is a tremendous tool for research on any subject.

Washington Post 11/11/99
CDC: Pesticide Sickened 123 in Fla.

By Russ Bynum
Associated Press Writer
Thursday, Nov. 11, 1999; 7:11 a.m. EST

ATLANTA ­­ Federal authorities are calling for a safer
alternative to fighting Mediterranean fruit flies than a pesticide
believed to have sickened as many as 123 people in Florida.

People in the Tampa Bay and Orlando areas reported a range of
health problems after helicopters and planes sprayed their
neighborhoods with the pesticide malathion last spring and
summer, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said

In one case, a woman with asthma who was exposed to
malathion suffered nausea, diarrhea, coughing, wheezing and
fatigue when she was exposed to the chemical. In another,
blisters broke out on the arms of a man mowing grass after a
malathion spraying.

"It's important that people not be too alarmed," said Omar
Shafey, coordinator of pesticide poisoning surveillance for the
Florida Department of Health. "But we realize that agricultural
pesticide application ... can result in some adverse health

Though it concluded that malathion doesn't pose a serious risk
to most people, the CDC wants agricultural officials to look for
less toxic alternatives for wiping out the Medfly.

"The risks are already pretty small, but we would like them to
be even lower," said Dr. Geoffrey Calvert of the CDC's
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health.

Cheminova Inc., the New Jersey company that manufactures
malathion, had no immediate comment.

Malathion is used to kill a host of agricultural pests, including
mosquitoes. It was sprayed over New York City after a
summer encephalitis outbreak, and North Carolina used it after
Hurricane Floyd left the area a soggy breeding ground for
mosquitos. No pesticide-related illnesses were confirmed in
either state.

When used to fight mosquitoes, malathion dissipates in the air
within a day, making it less likely to causes illnesses, Calvert

To kill the Medfly, malathion is mixed with corn meal and
corn syrup that is sprayed on plants for the flies to eat. The
mixture causes the pesticide to stick around, normally for four
days, but possibly as long as a month, Calvert said.

It was sprayed in Florida suburbs with a population totaling
about 132,000 to protect surrounding citrus and tomato crops.
Rather than zeroing in on farmland, helicopters and airplanes
blanket large areas.

"People are spraying poison on your head," said Jeffrey
Huggins of Tampa, a spokesman for the group Citizens for
Responsible Alternatives to Malathion, which has been pushing
to get malathion spraying banned in Florida.

The CDC suggested using less toxic chemicals or even
pesticide-free approaches, such as introducing sterile males
into the Medfly population to disrupt its reproduction.
© Copyright 1999 The Associated Press

A few of hundreds of Malathion information sites:

NYS Dept of Environmental Conservation
[This is the brand of Malathion OEM Director Jerry Hauer
Testified is being used]
page 1 of label
page 2 Label
page 3 label
page 4 label
CDC Encephalitis webpage

SEE: 10/6/97 Tampa Tribune on Malathion Fyfanon ULV
What is malathion?

Recent articles on the Plum Island Biological warfare/Animal
disease lab {Dr. Tracy McNamarra, the Bronx zoo animal
pathologist who first suggested West Nile virus, testified at the
City Council hearing that she was trained at Plum Island, a
Federally operated biowarfare lab that has been experimenting
with West Nile virus on birds for decades].

NY Times 9/22/99 U.S. Would Use Long Island Lab to Study
Food Terrorism
NY Times 9/23/99 Residents Near Lab Taking Germ Plan
Daily News 9/21/99 L.I.'s Nearby Plum Island Eyed for Deadly
Newsday 9/23/99 Plum Island Upgrade Debated / Worries
about lab for animal diseases
Newsday 9/24/99 Editorial/ Bioterrorismism /A real threat.
Using Plum I. labs to develop vaccines against it would make
Earlier articles on Plum Island:
Newsday Lab Focus Was On 4 Animal Diseases 11-21-1993
Danger Is Their Business At Plum Island
NEWSDAY Plum Island Safety Check 04-07-1994
NEWSDAY Security on Plum Island Must Be Taken Seriously
NEWSDAY Plum Island Cited By EPA 3/12/93
NEWSDAY Plum Island Bird Kill Probed 7/2/93
NEWSDAY Plum Is The Word In Russian 3/3/94

This site contains most of Robert Lederman’s writings on this

Giuliani's Chem-bio Handbook
This is the book, specially printed for the Mayor with his seal
and name on the cover that has extensive info on Malathion
directly refuting the Mayor's public statements. The book is
inside every EMS vehicle, firetruck and police precinct.

“Malathion is a nerve the same family as nerve gasses
developed during WWII” -NY Times 9/14/99

"There's absolutely no danger to anyone from this
spraying...There are some people who are engaged in the
business of wanting to frighten people out of their minds."
Mayor Giuliani-Newsday, 9/14/99

“Meanwhile, officials said that several hundred mosquitoes
sent to federal labs for testing showed no trace of the
potentially lethal virus.” -Daily News 9/17/99

"Freedom is not a concept in which people can do anything
they want, be anything they can be. Freedom is about authority.
Freedom is about the willingness of every single human being
to cede to lawful authority a great deal of discretion about what
you do." Mayor Giuliani, New York Times, March 17, 1994

From: The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich by William L.
Shirer pgs. 968 and 972
‘The Zyklon-B crystals that killed the victims were furnished
by two German firms which had acquired the patent from I.G.
Farben...The gas chambers themselves and the adjoining
crematoria, viewed from a short distance, were not sinister
looking places at all; it was impossible to make them out for
what they were...The unsuspecting Jews thought they were
being taken to the baths for the delousing which was customary
at all camps”.

"I ask you not to create any undue or unnecessary alarm or
panic," Giuliani said at a City Hall news conference on
Thursday morning. "There's no point in not spraying, because
there's no harm in spraying. So even if we're overdoing it,
there's no risk to anyone in overdoing it...The more dead
mosquitoes," he added, "the better. I don't think the media
should try to push this out of proportion”. NY Times 9/10/99

>From Newsday, 10/10/99 Bugged by Spraying
“The loudest protests heard during the city's recent campaign
of insecticide spraying came from the city's tiny Green Party
and the artist-agitator Robert Lederman...Yesterday, the head
of the mayor's Office of Emergency Management, which took
the lead in the assault on the city's mosquito populace,
dismissed such concerns as "irresponsible environmental
hysteria and stupidity." "If they took a deep breath [of
Malathion?] and looked at what we did and what pains we
went through to ensure that we did it right and recognize that
human life is at stake, they'd get the perspective," said OEM
Director Jerry Hauer.”

The World’s Current Major Chemical Companies
Germany- BASF Aktiengesellschaft- Bayer AG- Cassella
Farbewerke Mainkur Aktiengesellschaft- Hoechst
Aktiengesellschaft- IG FarbenNetherlands- AKZO
NV- DSMSwitzerland- CIBA-GEIGY AGU.K.- Imperial
Chemical Industries PLC U.S.A.- Allied-Signal Inc.- Dow
Chemical Company- Du Pont Company- Goodrich
Company- Grace & Company- Monsanto Company- Union
Carbide Corporation- Uniroyal Holdings, Inc.
IG Farben-History From The Encyclopedia Brittanica Online

In 1945 IG Farben came under Allied authority; its industries
(along with those of other German firms) were to be
dismantled or dismembered with the stated intent "to render
impossible any future threat to Germany's neighbours or to
world peace." In the western zones of Germany, however,
especially as the Cold War advanced, this disposition toward
liquidation lessened. Eventually the Western powers and West
Germans agreed to divide IG Farben into just three
independent units: Hoechst, Bayer, and BASF (the first two
being refounded in 1951; BASF in 1952).

From: -DEADLY DISCOVERY Newsday, 9/25/99 “Virologist
Thomas Monath, one of the country's leading authorities on
mosquito-carried viruses, called the discovery [of the
encephalitis virus in NY] "a bombshell," and added: "This is
the biggest arbovirus story of the last 50 years.
Wow!"...Monath, who works for OraVax, a biotechnology
company in Boston, said that he has been working closely with
CDC investigators in New York since the encephalitis outbreak
began in late August. He is assisting federal scientists in trying
to figure out a way to deal with the new development...Monath
said he met with CDC authorities on Wednesday to discuss the
tests performed on the dead birds. "We had a long discussion
about what the hell is going on," he said. They had a couple of
dead flamingos in the Bronx Zoo. And they found a dead
crow."...Bob Howard, a spokesman for the CDC's special
pathogens branch, said that earlier this week--before the dead
crow was tested--CDC researchers in Atlanta were telling their
counterparts in New York City about "some really weird lab
reports. "There's an outbreak right now in Russian--in
Volgograd--some 559 cases and 33 deaths...“

>From the Peptide Therapeutic Group’s website, Oravax’s
parent company .[]
Excerpt from a 9/20/99 press release:
“Our priority is to deliver shareholder value...”

From: OraVax, Inc.
“OraVax is a Cambridge, Massachusetts biopharmaceutical
company engaged in the discovery and development of
innovative vaccines and antibody products to prevent or treat
human infectious diseases...Additionally, the Company is
developing the ChimeriVax™ family of single-dose
genetically-engineered vaccines based on the yellow fever YF
17D vaccine strain virus. The first of these vaccines targets
Japanese encephalitis [West Nile is a Japanese
currently in preclinical development”.

[Peptide Therapeutics/Oravax (manufacturers of Japanese
Encephalitis vaccines) and Pasteur Mérieux Connaught are
collaborating together on many different levels, both
economically and scientifically.  PMC/Oravax manufactures a
Japanese encephalitis vaccine].
“Peptide is currently involved in the research and development
of two distinct classes of pharmaceuticals - vaccines and small
molecule drugs. ChimeriVax(TM) JE ­ single-dose vaccine to
prevent Japanese encephalitis ("JE") ChimeriVax(TM) is a
technology platform broadly applicable to develop vaccines to
protect against infections caused by flaviviruses. Two recent
publications from data presented by our scientists at the 11th
International Congress of Virology in Sydney demonstrated the
safety and efficacy of ChimeriVax(TM) in pre-clinical models.
The most advanced project employing the
ChimeriVax(TM) technology is to develop a JE vaccine
[Japanese Encephalitis}, in collaboration with PMC.
Pre-clinical work and manufacture of clinical lots for the Phase
I trial is expected to be completed by the end of this year
[1999]. The IND will then be filed for a Phase I safety and
immunogenicity trial, which is expected to commence in the
first half of 2000. We also have collaborative agreements with
PMC to develop vaccines against three other flaviviruses:
Dengue fever, Hepatitis C and Tick-borne encephalitis.

Robert Lederman, President of A.R.T.I.S.T.
(Artists’ Response To Illegal State Tactics)
ARTISTpres at  (718) 369-2111

Please feel free to forward this to anyone you know or to post it
anywhere you like.

Louis Proyect
Marxism mailing list: (

More information about the Marxism mailing list