Firenze 2011: the end of dissent
Posted by Henry Bauer on 2011/03/29
“The end of dissent” here refers to the acceptance of AIDS Rethinking as a legitimate part of mainstream discourse.
Several Rethinker contributions were presented at the Italian Conference on AIDS and Retroviruses sponsored by, among others, the International AIDS Society. This illustrates once again that when peer review is not under the control of vigilantes, it recognizes the soundness of a number of the critiques offered by Rethinkers; in this instance: the critique by Duesberg et al. of unfounded claims of huge numbers of AIDS deaths in South Africa; the official figures cited by Branca, Pacini, & Ruggiero that demonstrate the lack of any “HIV/AIDS” epidemic in Italy; and the critique of “HIV” tests and “HIV” epidemiology by Galletti, Pacini, Morucci, & Bauer.
The following report from Professor Marco Ruggiero has been edited slightly for this posting:
On March 27th – 29th, Firenze, Italy, hosted the Italian Conference on AIDS and Retroviruses under the High Patronage of the Italian President of the Republic, the Ministry of Health, the Region of Tuscany, the Province of Firenze, the Municipality of Firenze, the Universities of Firenze and Rome, the National Scientific Societies, the Public Health Service, several organizations involved in the fight against AIDS and, perhaps most notably, the International AIDS Society (IAS). This conference precedes the IAS conference to be held in Rome in July.
It is well known that for more than 25 years the opinions of such so-called dissident scientists as Professors Peter Duesberg and Henry Bauer were never allowed in mainstream conferences, and any voice questioning the role of HIV in causing AIDS has been systematically suppressed. Associations for the scientific reappraisal of the HIV/AIDS hypothesis such as Rethinking AIDS were never invited or even allowed to participate.
This deplorable state of affairs officially came to an end in Firenze with the formal and official recognition of the contributions of such scientists as Duesberg, Fiala, Koehnlein, Pacini, Rasnick, Ruggiero, Bauer, Branca, Galletti, Mandrioli, Morucci, Nicholson, Punzi, all questioning the role of HIV in the aetiology and pathogenesis of AIDS. Their communications were accepted under the normal peer-review process, and the respective abstracts are now available in a special issue (volume 39, Supplement 1, March 201) of Infection, a peer-reviewed journal of infectious disease published by Springer and the official publication of the following societies:
German Society for Infectious Diseases
Paul Ehrlich Society for Chemotherapy
German Sepsis Society
Italian Society of Infectious and Tropical Diseases (SIMIT)
Infection also cooperates with European Society of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases; European Society of Chemotherapy Infectious Diseases;
Swiss Society for Infectious Diseases
Infection is abstracted or indexed in:
Abstracts in Anthropology, Academic OneFile, AGRICOLA, ASFA, Biological Abstracts, BIOSIS, CAB Abstracts, CAB International, Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS), CINAHL, CSA, Current Abstracts, Current Contents/ Life Sciences, Current Contents/Clinical Medicine, EBSCO, Elsevier Biobase, EMBASE, EMCare, Environment Index, Expanded Academic, Global Health, Google Scholar, Health Reference Center Academic, IBIDS, Index Copernicus, INIS Atomindex, Journal Citation Reports/Science Edition, OCLC, PubMed/Medline, Science Citation Index, Science Citation Index Expanded (SciSearch), SCOPUS, Summon by Serial Solutions
For the very first time in more than 25 years, statements such as “HIV by itself is not causing AIDS”; “There is no gold standard for HIV tests”; “ARVs such as AZT do not cure or prevent HIV infection or AIDS”, have been recognized by peer review as scientifically sound and worth being presented and discussed at a conference sponsored by the International AIDS Society.
The international Scientific Committee, which reviewed and accepted the communications whose excerpts are quoted above, is to be lauded for scientific integrity and openness of mind. The Organizing Committee, too, deserves substantial credit for having accepted Rethinking AIDS as a legitimate association involved in the fight against AIDS. In fact, the Italian member of the board of directors of Rethinking AIDS, Prof. Marco Ruggiero, was accepted as a qualified representative of the HIV/AIDS community and granted free registration and access to all the events, including the sumptuous gala at the world-famous Palazzo della Signoria, seat of the Medici Family in Renaissance times.
It might be recalled that Firenze, renowned in the world for its artistic treasures, is also the city of Galileo, widely hailed as the founder of the modern scientific method and a martyr to the blind dogmatism that denies revolutionary ideas labelled as “heretical”. On the present occasion, Firenze demonstrated once again the supremacy of rational scientific thinking in declaring that the fight against AIDS cannot be deprived of such revolutionary ideas as have been blindly labelled heretical for so many years. From now on the hypotheses put forward by such scientists as Duesberg or Bauer cannot be dismissed lightly as “denialist delusions”, they now have their proper place in the history of AIDS. All those who question the central role of HIV in the aetiology or pathogenesis of AIDS need no longer fear being anathematized and excommunicated as denialists.
The wind of change blowing from Firenze will allow scientists to focus on the main culprit of AIDS, the immune system, with the obvious, but so far almost neglected, goal of restoring its function. A re-established immune system will get rid of the (probably harmless) virus “within a few weeks”, as Luc Montagnier has pointed out.