Thursday, July 14, 2011

CIA fakin the vaccine bacon

Poor Abbottabad residents thought they were getting their children vaccinated for Hepatitis B, for free!  Surely this sounded too good to be true, but, alas, besieged Pakistanis are desperate for almost everything, especially healthcare.  And, hey, there are all sorts of do-gooding NGOs just aching to hand out the love, right?  So, the poorest of the poor  lined up, looking to take advantage of that western do-goodery.  Big top Pak doc, Shakil Afriki, started up the "program."
The doctor went to Abbottabad in March, saying he had procured funds to give free vaccinations for hepatitis B.
Indeed, he had. One might imagine, however, that the funds procured had come from those do-gooding agents of humanity, those angels from America.  Really, what else could it be? Who or what else would deign to so help and heal the ravaged populations of Pakistan?

Actually, it was the CIA.

But they were not there to help and heal.  Such a surprise.
The CIA organised a fake vaccination programme in the town where it believed Osama bin Laden was hiding in an elaborate attempt to obtain DNA from the fugitive al-Qaida leader's family, a Guardian investigation has found.
As part of extensive preparations for the raid that killed Bin Laden in May, CIA agents recruited a senior Pakistani doctor to organise the vaccine drive in Abbottabad, even starting the "project" in a poorer part of town to make it look more authentic, according to Pakistani and US officials and local residents.
The doctor, Shakil Afridi, has since been arrested by the Inter-Services Intelligence agency (ISI) for co-operating with American intelligence agents. 
What? No bio weapon deploy? No crazy-ass population experiment? A fake vaccine program to confirm Binny? Looks like we're deep in the limited hang out weeds, folks. Wonder what the hang out was hangin' on?

Now, MSF is all pissy about the false front gig.
Médecins Sans Frontières has lashed out at the CIA for using a fake vaccination programme as a cover to spy on Osama bin Ladenon Thursday, saying it threatened life-saving immunisation work around the world.

The international medical aid charity said the ploy used by US intelligence, revealed this week in the Guardian, was a "grave manipulation of the medical act".

The CIA recruited a Pakistani doctor and health visitors before the operation in May that killed Bin Laden in Abbottabad in northern Pakistan, to try to ascertain whether the al-Qaida leader was living in the compound. The doctor, Shakil Afridi, set up a vaccination drive for Hepatitis B in the town in order to try to gain entry to the Bin Laden compound and obtain DNA samples from those living there.
And now for the requisite dose of CIA hilarity, something we all crave. Because when unnamed "government officials" start defending CIA front operations, well, you just gotta know that hilarity will ensue.
a senior US government official defended the practice, saying it had been intended as "an actual vaccination campaign conducted by real medical professionals". He said the team was supposed to deliver the full course of three vaccinations to those treated in Abbottabad.
Good and great intentions, gone horribly awry. Ain't that a bitch.

But it gets even better:
The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, added: "And it's not as if this kind of campaign is something the CIA runs every day."
And he's right! This is most certainly not the kind of campaign "the CIA runs every day." Usually, they're bombing people, torturing captured saps, running terrorists, guns and dope, all sorts of whatnot.  We also well know the CIA loves jacking up folk, preferably secretly, with all manner of toxic poisons, experimental dope, and weaponized bugs, just to see what happens.  The fact that this "fake" vaccine was administered without actually fucking up people (so far as we know), this "program" is indeed what one might call ... an outlier.