This post is the first in what turned out to be a series of essays and a great deal of investigation on the mystery illness. After a month of research, I was unable to find one shred of evidence that the illness was connected to any form of Ebola. What I found was a great deal of speculation about anonymous/anecdotal reports -- and one of the key reports about Ebola, while reportedly from a Chinese doctor, described symptoms that actually ruled out Ebola.
While this does not mean that Ebola can be entirely ruled out, it does mean that with no medical evidence whatsoever to back up anecedotal reports about the mystery illness, the reader should be cautious about any claims regarding the nature of the mystery.
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I'm interrupting my vacation to report on this critically important story. John Loftus* first reported more than a week ago to John Batchelor's radio audience that the 'mystery virus' that broke out China's Sichuan province "seemed to be split -- half Ebola, half AIDS."
Given the seriousness of the implications I decided to sit on the story until I'd gotten some additional confirmation, even though Recombinomics had passed along Boxun speculations about Ebola in China as early as July 19.
Last night Loftus gave another report to John Batchelor's audience in which he reiterated that his sources confirm that at least eight Chinese scientists and/or physicians have reported:
The disease ostensibly transmitted to humans by contact with infected pigs in China's Sichuan province is a mutated Ebola virus. Loftus added about the virus, "Think part Ebola, part AIDS."
Here are the rest of my notes on Loftus' report last night:
> Reportedly there have been many more human deaths from the disease than China's authorities are acknowledging.
> There are reports that "large concentration camps" have been set up in Sichuan where Chinese with symptoms from the illness are being taken "to die."
> The disease has an 82% fatality rate among humans.
> The disease has spread to hundreds of villages in Sichuan.
> Loftus has gotten confirmation that eight Chinese scientists and/or physicians who initially passed their data (about the Ebola connection) to the World Health Organization (WHO) have been arrested by the authorities in China and are being held incommunicado.**
> China's authorities are not allowing WHO to take samples of the virus and have stated that the number of deaths from the virus is a "state secret." ***
> It can't be established at this point whether the X virus, shall we term it, has exchanged genetic material with H5N1. Loftus found it suggestive (or passed along what others have noted) that there is a possible link:
The X virus could be connected with hundreds of ducks who died in Sichuan and were eaten by villagers. Initially these ducks were reportedly infected with H5N1 but this situation is murky because China's authorities have withheld much data. Also, whether this situation could be connected with the reported swine deaths is unclear.
> Loftus passed along his sources' speculation that there has been a fowl to swine to human transmission of the X virus. As to whether there is human to human (H2H) transmission, this is not established because China's health agencies have not shared key data with outside health agencies.
> If the X virus is carried by migratory birds/fowl, as with H5N1, the disease could quickly spread to other countries even without H2H.
Pundita's observations on last night's report
As with several John Loftus reports, this one should be considered "intelligence" rather than evidence. The most I can say with certainty is that John's sources in Western intelligence agencies and militaries are excellent and that from his report, clearly they believe at this stage that the X virus is a mutated form of Ebola.
With regard to Beijing's covering up the extent of the outbreak -- the historical and present patterns are so well established, and verified from so many sources, that I consider it an established fact.
Other sources on the story
Check the Pundita sidebar for websites that report on Avian flu virus. Also, I recommend that readers regularly check The Epoch Times daily to look for updates on the X virus, H5N1 in China, and Beijing's moves to cover up the X virus outbreak and stonewall international health agencies. This July 31 Epoch Times story is focused on asking whether there is a H5N1 pandemic already underway
but it also provides background on the X virus outbreak.
Despite Beijing's ongoing attempts to discredit The Epoch Times, I found the paper's July 31 report to be well-sourced. It's to be noted that The Epoch Times helped break the SARS story, which Beijing also tried to cover up.
US foreign policy implications
Whatever the exact nature of the X virus, it is beyond question that the authorities in China have not provided the US Center for Disease Control with data about the extent of the H5N1 outbreak in China. It is past time for the US Department of State to issue a strongly worded demand for transparency and recommend sanctions if Beijing does not comply.
* If you have questions about John Loftus' reports on the mutated virus kindly direct them to him at: firstname.lastname@example.org
** Chinese reporters (I speculate these might include the above-mentioned scientists) who filed stories with Boxun about a possible Ebola connection to the virus have also been arrested by the Chinese authorities. See The Epoch Times story above.
*** China's authorities have also designated as a "state secret" the number of human deaths in China from H5N1. This means that WHO, CDC and other health agencies are lacking critical data to help them track the spread of H5N1 in humans.