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Posts Tagged ‘blood’

Report: Radiation Expert Says “No Way” Arafat Was Poisoned by Israel

Wednesday, November 14th, 2012

Dr. Roland Masse, a teacher of radiopathology at Percy Military Training Hospital, where PLO chairman Yasser Arafat was hospitalized before his death on November 11, 2004, has given the first interview related to Arafat’s death in eight years, telling The Times of Israel that there is “absolutely no way” the blood libel blaming Israel for poisoning the leader is true.

In the days leading up to the exhumation of Arafat to test him for polonium poisoning, Masse told The Times of Israel polonium poisoning symptoms would have been “impossible to miss” and said Arafat was tested at the hospital – which specializes in radiation detection – for radiation poisoning.

Masse said Arafat’s blood work did not present any of the symptoms of polonium poisoning, but did show a decrease in platelets.

Masse said that “abnormal levels of radioactive polonium Swiss scientists said they found eight years after Arafat’s death this July would have meant he was put in contact with such high levels of the material that doctors could not have missed it.

Masse was responsible for supervising national radioactivity in France in the 1990s as head of the Bureau for Protection against Ionizing Radiation.

When Arafat arrived at Percy, he was diagnosed with a blood disorder which caused blood clots throughout the body, a condition which could have been caused by a number of diseases.

Arafat’s condition deteriorated quickly, he fell into a coma on November 3, and died eight days later.

Arafat’s tomb will be exhumed on November 26 for further investigation.

Rumors have circulated around the Arab world that Israel is responsible for Arafat’s death – Israel has denied this allegation.

The Blood of an American Hero

Sunday, November 4th, 2012

I keep hearing the words of Charles Woods as he speaks of his son Tyrone. Tyrone was a Navy SEAL – who did what Navy SEALS have been doing for as long as they have existed – he went to the aid of his fellow Americans. For 7 hours, he fought terrorists at the American consulate in Benghazi. He and Glen Doherty managed to hold them off, managed to kill 60 of them, according to some reports. And in all that time, no Americans arrived to help them, to save them. No one came to their aid despite repeated requests, despite available assets.

During a recent interview, Charles Woods said:

They watched my son die. As far as I’m concerned, there are people, in the White House, whoever it was that was in that room, watching that video of my son dying, their cries for help, their order ‘don’t help them at all, let them die,’ whoever that might be, it might be numerous people, you have the blood of my son, you have the blood of an American hero on your hands. I don’t know who you are, but one of these days the truth will come out. I still forgive you, but you need to stand up.

I don’t want to point any fingers, but obviously, people in the White House were watching this happen. Real time. They – someone in the White House, or many people in the White House, watched the events unfolding, and knew that if they gave the order to stand down, that my son would die. They watched my son die.

“They watched my son die.” Those words haunt me. I cannot imagine the pain this father feels – not only having lost his son, but having been betrayed by his government. President Barack Hussein Obama is the Commander-in-Chief – even if he did not give the order to leave these heroes behind…and I believe he did give that order – but even if he did not, the one thing we agree on is that this was his responsibility. It is his hands that carry the blood of these men.

Elie told me the story of one of his commanding officers. While the officer was off-base, at meetings or whatever, there was a training exercise and a nagmash (an APC) turned over and a commander was killed. There was another officer, of lower rank in charge of the exercise but Elie’s commanding officer was the commander above that officer and so he took responsibility; he took the demotion; he took the punishment.

His advancement in the army was delayed for several years because ultimately, he felt that what happened under his command, was his to answer for. There was never a question that it was a tragic accident; there was no order that could have been given to save the soldier who died and certainly there was nothing anyone nearby could have done to prevent it from happening. You train and you train hard because in war, you’ll have to scale those hills and drive over rough terrain. That time, it went wrong.

What happened in Libya was not a training exercise and according to several reports, there was aid that could have been sent in – drones filming it, ships within range. It was not an accident but an attack. And unlike Elie’s commanding officer, the Commander-in-Chief of the United States Armed Forces did leave a man behind, two good men, in fact…and even four if you count the diplomats.

They watched his son die – and for the rest of his life, that image, that reality, that horrible truth will forever be his reality. The blood of American heroes cries out to all who will listen. Responsibility must be taken – and it starts at the very highest address in Washington down to the sewers and  streets of Benghazi because no parent should ever have to say those horrible words ever again.

Visit A Soldier’s Mother.

On The Interface Of Science And Torah Ethics Human Genomics: Scientific Achievement and Ethical Dilemmas

Friday, November 2nd, 2012

“G-d formed man from the earth and breathed into him a living soul.”

The greatest achievement of the biological sciences since that moment in creation has been the Human Genome Project, a massive effort by thousand of biologists, chemists and physicists who isolated and identified the 24,000 genes that Hashem placed in Adam and Eve, and through them in each of their descendents. These genes direct the formation of all our physical and mental attributes. Despite having the same genes, however, we are not all identical. When compared to the genetic make-up of the “reference human,” whose gene sequences were published at the completion of the Human Genome Project, every individual’s genome has about four million variations, some of which predispose to disease or determine response to a specific treatment. “Personal Genomics” is the goal that medical geneticists hope to achieve under which specific treatment for a disease would be determined by studying the whole genome sequence [WGS] of a patient.

The WGS is a non-invasive test requiring only some blood or saliva. Such testing now exists for analyzing fetal DNA from pregnant women. Unlike amniocentesis, which needs fluid removed from the sack (amnion) that surrounds and protects the developing fetus and may cause a spontaneous abortion, these new tests need only a few drops of blood from the mother to isolate fetal DNA, and a swab of the father’s saliva. Three commercial labs launched versions of this test in the past twelve months and last June, researchers at the University of Washington used this non-invasive test to “read” the entire genome of an 18 week fetus.

This magnificent advance in the study of the human genome poses an ethical challenge to all who are guided by Torah law. Even our current primitive ability to study the genetics of a fetus, to determine if it carries the genetic Down’s Syndrome, has resulted in the abortion of 90% of those so identified. Testing 24,000 genes for “normalcy” will surely result in a massive increase in abortions. Current obstetrical practice routinely includes an ultrasound scan of the developing fetus. Under instruction from their liability insurance company to avoid suits for “unlawful birth” doctors must report to parents’ every minor deviation from the idealized norm. If such deviations are reported, worry and fear supplants the joy of pregnancy until, as almost always, a normal, healthy child is born.

What will be the decision of young parents who planned on a family of three children- two of whom are home in bed and one in utero? Why risk the tragedy of a genetically defective child being born? Cancel this one and try again in a few months!

Torah Law is unambiguous! Aborting even the earliest pregnancy violates biblical law. Some who follow the dictates of halacha are misled by the reference in the Talmud to an embryo before 40 days of gestation as “maya b’alma,” which they translate incorrectly as “merely water.” The reference is to the unformed stage of development (like water without form) and is not intended to impugn the embryo’s claim to life. When the health of the mother is endangered, the halacha differentiates between a pre- or post-40 day gestation. The halacha, however, defends the implanted embryo’s claim to life even if it requires transgressing Torah Law, come the Sabbath, to obtain medical care that would prevent the termination of the early pregnancy.

There is another ethical dilemma to evaluate. Is knowledge an absolute good? Must everyone be aware of every potential mishap that may occur because of some genetic flaw harbored in his genome?

Indeed, most would agree that it is better not to know of the presence of a catastrophic gene such as the gene for Huntington’s Disease which destroys the brain by age 50 and for which there is no cure. But there are many who prefer to have a life of simple faith in Hashem knowing that His kindness will protect from all evil. They do not want to know—hence the dilemma. When one member of a family undertakes a WGS study, it reveals information about every other close relative. To tell them the test results imposes the burden of knowledge that they prefer not to bear. To withhold genetic information such as the presence of cancer genes which predispose to the disease prevents them from taking necessary precautions such as frequent medical examination or early pharmacological or radiological intervention that be life saving.

The Ongoing Nightmare of the Jailed Doctor in the UAE

Monday, October 22nd, 2012

It’s a news story that directly affects just one man, but the implications of what is being done to Prof. Cyril Karabus are horrific, and of particular note to air travelers planning to fly Qantas at some future time. (The background is in two blog posts of ours: Dubai, Dubai, Dubai and Back to Dubai: Australian travelers might want to factor this report into their plans).

The short summary: A distinguished professor of medicine aged 78, with a lifetime of service to the community in his native South Africa, passed through Dubai airport in the UAE on August 18, en route back home following his son’s wedding in Canada. In Dubai, he was arrested and notified that he was convicted a decade earlier on charges arising from the death of a three year old child he had treated for terminal cancer. No notification had ever been given to the doctor at the time of the child’s death or since then up until his fateful transit visit to Dubai. Lawyers were retained, and the doctor formally denied any involvement in what was described as the killing of the young leukemia patient. The prosecution was unable FOUR times to produce the files on the basis of which the elderly doctor was convicted, and so four times his application for bail could not proceed. Meanwhile he remained incarcerated in an appalling prison.

The Guardian wrote on October 3, 2012 that he is an “old, frail and very sickly man” according to his lawyer, Michael Bagraim.

He has no travel documents or any means of escaping or jumping bail. There doesn’t seem to be any heart in what is taking place. “My reports from people who were in the court were that the man appears to be broken. He was hunched. He was shackled. He is almost 78 and he has a pacemaker and a stent because of problems with his heart.

Now to the update. The report below comes from one of the UAE’s English language newspapers, the Khaleej Times:

Doc in the dock to be released on bail
12 October 2012

The Abu Dhabi Criminal Court issued a primary ruling on Thursday assigning the UAE’s Higher Committee for Medical Liability to give its expert opinion on the charges addressed to the South African doctor, Cyril Karabus.

The doctor has been accused of committing a medical error that led to the death of a girl and of falsifying a prescription to hide his mistake earlier in 2002 while he was in the UAE as a visiting doctor.

The court explained in its ruling that the case is not ready for adjudication as it calls for technical opinion to resolve and clarify some of the issues and the points raised, and therefore decided to assign the Higher Committee for Medical Liability to give its opinion whether or not the accused committed a medical error while the victim was receiving treatment under his supervision.

The court also asked the committee to give its opinion whether the error, provided it is established, was the direct cause of the death or there were other reasons which hastened the child’s death.

At a hearing, the court also decided to release him on bail on security of his passport or the passport of a guarantor plus a bail amount of Dh100,000… the value of the blood-money the court may order him to pay if found guilty.

The court also scheduled the next hearing for November 20 when the claimant of the civil damages will appear along with his attorney.

We understand that the Karabus family was having a hard time raising the bail/”blood” money, which equates to US$54,000. The Guardian quoted Prof. Karabus’ lawyer saying “During the apartheid system, he concentrated on helping children of colour, so much so that he is an impoverished man himself today…” [source].

As we said here last week, there is not much we ordinary people can do to express our fury in the face of outrageous injustice by people with power. Signing a petition is one (the online petition is here – please consider signing it).

Letting the good people at Qantas, one of the world’s really good airlines, know [as a Sydney lawyer did] how the special relationship with Emirates, Dubai and Abu Dhabi feels to us, is another.

Meanwhile, the latest (from Henry Benjamin’s excellent JWire site in Australia) is that Prof. Karabus was released from jail on bail following his arrest at Dubai airport whilst in transit on August 18. It quotes a family member saying: “He was released on Sunday night to stay at a colleague’s flat. He is free to move around the UAE but cannot leave as his passport has been confiscated.” His next court date is November 20. No word on whether the authorities have managed to find the missing paperwork.

Visit This Ongoing War.

Prime Minister’s Health Report

Monday, October 22nd, 2012

As he does every year, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu informs the public on the state of his health.

The Government Press Office reported that the Prime Minister underwent routine annual tests (a physical test and lab tests), and his personal physician, Dr. Zvi Herman Berkowitz, has determined that his medical situation is excellent.

Prime Minister Netanyahu maintains a healthy lifestyle, including a proper diet. His blood pressure is 120/80, assisted by light medication. (This is unchanged from previous years.) He has recovered from a torn tendon in his leg; it has been recommended that he continue physiotherapy and gradually return to exercising in a gym.

Three Rabbis Sue City over Metzitzah B’peh

Friday, October 12th, 2012

A lawsuit filed Thursday by Jewish organizations and three rabbis argues that a new NY City rule requiring parental consent for metzitzah b’peh, a post-circumcision ritual that involves oral suction in order to stimulate blood flow in the traumatized organ, violates the First Amendment, the NY Daily News reports.

The new rule, which take effect Oct. 21, requires mohels who perform the metzitzah b’peh to provide parents with a document they must sign, containing information about the health risks involved.

City officials say babies may contract herpes from the practice, and they cite 11 cases between 2004 and 2011, including two fatalities.

The lawsuit argues that the new rule violates the constitutional freedom of religion.

“Government cannot compel the transmission of messages that the speaker does not want to express — especially when the speaker is operating in an area of heightened First Amendment protection, such as a religious ritual,” the lawsuit argues.

City officials said they are planning to fight the suit “vigorously.”

“The city’s highest obligation is to protect its children; therefore, it is important that parents know the risks associated with the practice,” Health Commissioner Thomas Farley said.

It has been argued that the city is yet to prove that the herpes contracted by the babies was the same virus carried by the mohel. Another argument made regarding this issue, is that babies whose mothers are carriers of herpes receive immunity to the virus in the womb, and that only babies born to uninfected mothers are in danger from metzitzah b’peh.

Those two arguments are crucial to understanding the current law suit, because it is possible that the babies who received metzitzah b’peh from a mohel contracted their herpes from a third person and not via the genitalia.

It is estimated that about 80 percent of American adults are carriers of oral herpes (cold sores).

And the Lie Continues…

Thursday, September 27th, 2012

Once again, the nonsense that a child is wiping up blood in Gaza as a picture is used again. This time, it is claimed by Syrian rebels to be a child there. In defending the Syrian rebels, Linda Juniper attempts to set the story straight…and misses completely.

Nice try, Linda – but it isn’t a “photo of a child wiping blood after an air strike on school in Gaza” – and though the rebels try to claim it was in Syria, it has already been proven here that this image is of a young Palestinian boy in HEBRON (not Gaza, not Syria), who was wiping up the blood of a COW (not his brother’s blood and not the results of an Israeli air strike).

There is no honor in combating one lie, Linda Juniper, by spreading another.

Visit A Soldier’s Mother.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/a-soldiers-mother/and-the-lie-continues/2012/09/27/

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