Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

 

 

Dr. Mengele’s Friends: The Forgotten History of Human Vivisection in America and Europe

 

 

““I find some very impressive paragraphs in a paper which was read before the National Individualist Club (1898) by a medical man. I have read and re-read these paragraphs, with always augmenting astonishment, and have tried to understand why it should be considered a kind of credit and a handsome thing to belong to a human race that has vivisectors in it.”

Mark Twain

 

 

“Their next step in this crazy logic is that no research is scientific unless it involves such cruelties. With all the infinite possibilities of legitimate and kindly research open to anyone with enough industry and ingenuity to discover innocent methods of exploration, they set up a boycott of brains and a ritual of sacrifice of dogs and guinea pigs which impresses the superstitious public as all such rituals do. Thereby they learn many things that no decent person ought to know;…”

George Bernard Shaw

 

NOTE: Since the writing of this article I became more aware of distortions in the truth that have been used for decades about World War 2, Nazi Germany etc. Due to the extent of the distortions and the efforts to disguise the truth (this includes making it illegal in some countries to question the activities of the Nazi concentration camps–you would think if something is true you would not need to make it illegal to talk about it) I cannot be certain about the factual validity of the exploits of Dr. Mengele. The article is about lesser known individuals which may be considered part of the distortions of the truth–that they are not mentioned in the same corporate media that so frequently talks about Mengele.

 

Anti-vivisection campaigners must contend with the most obscene and foolish defenses of medical sadism, including the claim that vivisectors only seek the good of humanity (by torturing the innocent). In truth, your average career vivisector reveals psychopathic personality traits in word and deed. As notorious 19th century animal torturer Claude Bernard proudly noted, the vivisector is of a special breed of human that is unmoved by the suffering of their victims, for the pursuit of knowledge trumps all other concerns. Such a view is what gave rise to the idea of the mad scientist, and as vivisection spread like a plague among the medical establishment, so did the desire to expand it beyond the confines of social values.

 

The exploits of Dr. Josef Mengele, medical researcher in Germany who tortured war prisoners in the camp at Auschwitz in the name of science, are well known.

 

The usual assumption is to suggest that Mengele was a freakish anomaly, and that the Germans (and their allies the Japanese) were the only ones to engage in such wicked exploitation of vulnerable humans. Now it is known that Mengele, who built a kindergarten for concentration camp children and played them the violin (when he wasn’t experimenting on them) had the support of elite doctors at the prestigious, Nobel Prize-winning, Kaiser-Wilhelm Institute.

 

The relationship between respected medical men and torture was not isolated to Germany. Dr. James Marion Sims, a president of the American Medical Association in the 19th century, conducted groundbreaking experiments into women’s health upon slaves, and one of his studies included removing a man’s jaw (without anesthetic). Despite this history, his statue remains in New York’s Central Park.

 

Contrast that with the statue at the center of the Brown Dog Affair of 1907, when a thousand medical students stormed the streets of London attacking police and women in an effort to destroy a statue(!) erected in memory of a dog who had been tortured for two months by vivisectors. Such a furor was raised by these priests of what George Bernard Shaw called “medical voodoo,” that it was removed and not re-instated (in a less conspicuous location) until the 1980s.

 

Vivisection has its origins in augury and soothsaying—where temple priests would torture living animals with the claim that society would be better off. Vivisectors repeat the same promise when criticized for atrocities. But the nature of the vivisector, a type of “emotional retardation,” is such that they will exploit anyone they can (while claiming they are the real victims of violence and terrorists).

 

Despite the exceptional status given to Mengele and Sims, medical experimentation upon humans without their approval (but with the support of power) has been carried out to the present day. In the 1940s, the Salk brothers infected mental patients with influenza, and Pfizer did harmful experiments on villagers in Africa in the 1990s. But there are other vivisectors who are not so well known (despite their claims about “furthering human knowledge”) which reveal that as nonhuman experimentation was allowed, it opened the door for experimentation upon unwilling humans- especially the most vulnerable.

 

A footnote in an article on the history of animal advocacy in the early part of the 20th century referred to a rejected 1923 bill in the New York legislature that would have banned medical experimentation on dogs and orphans.

 

Further details in a pamphlet titled “Human Vivisection” from the British Union for the Abolition of Vivisection by A.E. Parker documents sadistic experiments that would likely be lost to history, if not for the efforts of those who campaigned on the behalf of nonhuman animal (and human) victims of vivisectors. The pamphlet credits Dr. Herbert Snow (surgeon for 29 years), Dr. Walter Hadwen, Dr. Geo. Searle and others for their investigations into the atrocities of vivisectors. It begins with endorsements of human vivisection by several doctors: such as this:

 

“A human life is nothing compared with a new fact in science. The aim of science is the advancement of human knowledge at any sacrifice of human life. We do not know of any higher use we can put a man to.”

Professor Slosson in the New York Independent, December l2th, 1895.

 

Dr. Snow follows with these remarks:

“It need hardly be pointed out that once admit the principle expressed, with significance above–that men should ‘put everything second to the advancement of knowledge’-at once the door is set open for the perpetration of almost any conceivable wickedness and atrocity. It is only medical practitioners who have it in their power to carry out this maxim at the cost of fellow human beings. That unrestricted freedom to experimentalize is at once seen to constitute a terribly insidious danger to modern society. Merely an infinitesimal percentage of doctors are directly concerned in Vivisection, yet the majority lay down the law in its favour. We now see on all sides an overwhelming popular craze for ‘Research,’ alias the Vivisection of the (sub-human) animals; for ‘Experiment,’ in place of clinical and pathological observation. Hence, there is grave reason to fear ever-increasing experimentation on the (lower) animal creation and on the weaker and more helpless sections of the human species. An object lesson always impresses more than a lecture; a few concrete facts will necessarily carry, to the man in the street who has no time to study scientific principles, infinitely more weight than a lengthy argument. I here quote only a small percentage of the cases on record. It is impossible to credit the Laboratory or the Schools with an increased spirit of humanity since these things were done. Only of necessity there is more secrecy.”

THE STORY OF NEISSER. “The Medical Press, March 29th, 1899, records the inoculation with syphilis of 8 healthy children without the consent of their parents, by Professor Neisser. Symptoms of the disease were developed in 3. A fourth was seen 3 years after the inoculation with a cerebral tumour, its direct result. The Times, January 15th, 1901, reports that the Disciplinary Court of Breslau had fined Neisser 300 marks for publishing his account of the experiments, not for the experiments themselves. In March, 1906, Neisser attempted to lecture at Stettin, but was hooted off the stage. On June 27th, 1911, the West London Medico-Surgical Society held its annual Conversazione at Kensington Town Hall. Before them Professor Neisser delivered the Cavendish lecture and was presented with the Cavendish Gold Medal for his researches and experiments. Not a syllable of protest against these proceedings appears to have been uttered by any association, or by the current medical journals.

(2) Mr. LANDIUS, speaking in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, April 29th, 1913, refers to 146 children recently inoculated with syphilitic virus, (*by Dr. Hideyo Noguchi)“through the courtesy of the various hospitals in that city.” He also mentions 8 children experimented on by spinal puncture – all died – and 15 children in St. Vincent’s House, Philadelphia, whose eyes were tested with Tuberculin, and states that some had been totally blinded.

(3) Dr. EMMET HOLT, Professor of Children’s Diseases Columbia University, New York, read a paper at the Twentieth Annual meeting of the American Pediatric Society’ (May 26th, 1908) giving details of 1,000 Tuberculin tests he had made on young children in hospital; 615 tests were on the eyes of babies, whose hands were tied during the first 12 hours, to prevent any rubbing of the eye. Dying children, were similarly tested.

(4) Dr. RODERMUND OF MILWAUKEE, in the Medical Brief, April, 1906, reports experiments on 17 youthful persons. ” I sprayed the poison of diphtheria, smallpox, etc., into the nose and throat.” ” Of course I could not let the patients know what I was doing. I was supposed to be treating them for cataracts of the nose and throat,”

Experiments upon Children and Lunatics.
Dr. Walter HADWEN, J.P., of Gloucester, in the Abolitionist for January. 1914, draws attention to the ” fact that experimentation upon” the lower animals must of necessity lead to experiments upon the human species,” and gives examples upon children ; and in the same journal for March, 1916, writes of the (‘atrocious work carried on in the United States,” quoting from the Journal of Experimental Medicine, February, 1916. which is published by the notorious Rockefeller Institute. It contains a gruesome article by Dr. Udo J. Wile, from the University of Michigan, Dr. Hadwen describes that he “bored holes in the skulls of no less than 6 helpless lunatics, who were confined in the Pontiac State Hospital, using apparently only a local anaesthetic for the incisions into the scalp ” (many of us know how useless local anaesthetics are for deadening pain in most cases.)” Then a long nozzled syringe was inserted through the trephine hole into the brain of each, and a syringe full of brain contents was severally extracted.” This was used for injecting into “the two most sensitive organs” of several rabbits, and “the poor tortured ” creatures died in the course of several weeks. Dr. Hadwen adds : “‘The author of these outrages publicly ‘expresses his appreciation’ of ‘many laboratory courtesies extended- to him’ by fellow ‘vivisectors, and specially thanks Dr. Edmund Christian, under whose hospital care the poor lunatics were placed,’for the facilities he placed at his disposal ! ‘ ”

 

In connection with this it is well for us to remember that the
American Vivisectors are welcomed over here by our own medical men,
and that the Rockefeller Foundation, in 1920, gave the ” enormous sum
of (US) $1,205,000 to University College Medical School and the College ”
-and Vivisection is carried on there ! Abolitionist, July,1920.
H. SELTER, of Leipzig, also injected ” small amounts of tubercle
bacilli ” into healthy children (Deut. Med. Woch., July I7th,1925.) “Nine children developed larger or smaller nodules………one child died of influenza pneumonia .”Starry Cross Oct. . 1925,

 

The Lancet, June 27th,1925, refers to an “experiment in prophylaxis
against tuberculosis in infants “–in 1921 and 1924 by Dr. Calmette, of
the Pasteur Institute, who experimented on over 1,000 young children,
and it throws serious doubts upon the supposed proof and results. Coming from the headquarters of orthodox medicine this is very welcome to anti -vivisectionists.
The Obserzter November 2nd, 1924, relates that the Arbeiter-Zeitung
states that ” an experiment with a new kind of serum was attempted on
36 children at a babies’ home near Vienna, with this fatal result: Six of them died of diphtheria toxin poisoning-and demands a strict examination into the case.”
” A Vienna cable to the Christian Science Monitor, June 30th, 1925,
contains the announcement that the Minister of Social Welfare has issued a decree forbidding the use of toxin antitoxin as an inoculation against diphtheria. ‘The decree is an inner departmental one, based on a report of Professor Pirquet, and was sent to the Serotherapeutic Institute of Vienna. It is a strange anomaly that while one Government forbids a treatment of this kind on account of its danger, other Governments do all they can to encourage its use. (See also British Medical Journal September 26th, 1925).

Our own Ministry of Health is much to be feared in this direction, but we are glad to note that the L.C.C. has decided against the use of the test for London School children. Abolitionist, August, 1925. Work house Schools are not exempt, unfortunately; 329 pauper children under the charge of the Holborn Guardians and several hundreds at Manchester, Edinburgh and Bristol, were thus exploited. (Abolitionist, April, 1922)

Dr. Hadwen describes the Schick test as “a blood poisoning process” and as “human vivisectional experiments ” on pauper children.

(2) ‘Dr. A. T. BRAND, in a review of his recent book on Cancer (1922) is quoted as follows :

“It is most important that much should be done in experimental inoculation, and it is even more necessary that such experiments should be made on the ‘genus homo.’ No doubt there would be- a great outcry from the shrieking sisterhood of both sexes; but they should, of course, be simply ignored, for science must be permitted to pursue the calm and even tenor of her way, undisturbed and undeterred by the vapourings of irresponsible cranks.” One wonders if he would be the first to submit to inoculation with this terrible disease?’

 

One must take note of his reference to “shrieking sisterhood of both sexes,” which reveals a patriarchal contempt for emotion, and typical psychopathic belligerence to critics.

 

Francis Payton Rous, based at the Rockefeller Institute and editor of the Journal of Experimental Medicine, speaking in defense of Salk’s experiments, wrote to co-vivisector Thomas Francis:

“It may save you much trouble if you publish your paper… elsewhere than in the Journal of Experimental Medicine. The Journal is under constant scrutiny by the anti-vivisectionists who would not hesitate to play up the fact that you used for your tests human beings of a state institution. That the tests were wholly justified goes without saying.”

 

After this review of human vivisection before WW2, we can see that even into the present, such abuses persist: Israeli doctors experimented on children Chris McGreal, May 11, 2005 The Guardian
http://www.guardian.co.uk/israel/Story/0,2763,1481159,00.html

An investigation by the government watchdog, the state comptroller, has revealed that researchers in 10 public hospitals administered drugs, carried out unauthorised genetic testing or undertook painful surgery on patients unable to give informed consent or without obtaining health ministry approval.At one hospital, staff pierced children’s eardrums to apply an experimental medication yet to be approved in any country. At another, patients with senile dementia had their thumbprints applied to consent forms for experimental drugs…They should be stripped of their licences to practise and they should be prosecuted. If you don’t show by example that the medical profession does not accept this kind of conduct the phenomenon will go on and on.”It’s not an isolated phenomenon. It spread through different institutions.”The state comptroller, Eliezer Goldberg, found that patients were often not properly informed about the experiments they were agreeing to and, in some cases, not told at all….

 

A compassionate person may wonder at how such things could be-that a doctor would be in fact, a sadist. In fact, the medical profession is among those attractive to people with anti-social behavior, since it offers authority and for those without a moral compass, much opportunity to cause suffering and be paid handsomely for it.

 

One may consider these people (the psychopath next door) as “emotionally impaired,” and due to the long history of denouncing compassion as an illness or a weaker trait, merciless behavior is not only tolerated but celebrated if it is on the side of power. No doubt that if Nazi Germany had triumphed, Dr. Mengele would be seen as Dr Sims was, a benefactor of humanity.

 

Thanks to John Edmundson of the Humanitarian League’s – Ernest Bell Library – in Hong Kong for providing the historical anti-vivisection pamphlet used in this article.

 

 

NOTES

 

Hideyo Noguchi was the bacteriologist at the center of the 1911-1912 human experimentation scandal involving the Rockefeller Institute and a syphilis skin test administered to orphans and other vulnerable patients. The New York Society for the Prevention for Cruelty to Children failed in efforts to get the New York district attorney to press charges against him. Ironically, one argument presented in his defense was that he had tested on himself. In 1913 he was diagnosed with syphilis but refused treatment. He died in Lagos, Nigeria in 1928, of yellow fever, while conducting experiments (using monkeys) with Dr. William Alexander Young. Young also died from yellow fever, attributed to careless regard by Noguchi for the safety of his fellow scientists and assumed to be caused by neurosyphilis (or was it his vivisector nature?)

For more on this, see Susan E. Lederer’s book

Subjected to Science: Human Experimentation in America Before the Second World War.

 

Advertisements