Genetically Modified Seeds: Conceived as a Weapon – Global Research

genetically-modified-seeds:-conceived-as-a-weapon-–-global-research

11-02-20 09:39:00,

GM seeds and GM food carry great risks for all nations, so much so that for many reasons it is probably imperative these foods be banned outright. This subject is too large to be discussed here, but one aspect requires brief notice. If we were to ask about the origin of GM seeds, how the idea was conceived and developed, who did the research and who provided the funding, how would we reply? We might reasonably suggest that perhaps the concept originated in the Biology or Agricultural Department of some university, or that a government lab doing research on food supplies might have conceived and pursued the idea. Or, we might suggest a private company in the agricultural field was looking for more productive varieties of grains and stumbled on this process.

We might suggest all those answers, but in each case we would be wrong. GM seed was conceived, promoted, researched and funded by the US Department of Defense – the American War Department. GM seed was never meant as a way to feed the hungry, but was instead conceived and developed as a weapon or, more precisely, as a weapons-delivery system. Genetically-Modified seed was never intended to support human life, but to eliminate it.

GM seed is neither more productive nor healthier than traditional heritage crops, and is far more expensive and destructive, but it presents almost irresistible military advantages against any nation that becomes dependent on this source of food grains. One is that the US can use it as a political weapon, refusing to supply seed to a disfavored nation, perhaps causing widespread famine and dislocation. The other is more sinister, in that many groups have experimented with gene-splicing technology, inserting unrelated DNA into various seeds.

In one case in Canada, a government department discovered an “anti-freeze” gene contained in the blood of fish living in Arctic waters, permitting them to survive in waters of sub-zero temperature. (20) The scientists spliced this gene into Canadian wheat crops, permitting the wheat to withstand freezing temperatures without damage. Monsanto also forced these genes into tomatoes, resulting in the first GMO tomato. (21) An American research lab spliced the genes from fireflies into tobacco plants, producing a tobacco field that glowed in the dark.

 » Lees verder

Genetically Modified Seeds: Bayer Builds Latin America’s Largest Seed Factory in Chile – Global Research

genetically-modified-seeds:-bayer-builds-latin-america’s-largest-seed-factory-in-chile-–-global-research

27-01-20 01:56:00,

Following is an English translation of an article from the German newspaper Deutsche Welle (DW), translated by  from the Spanish version circulated by Network for a Latin America Free of Transgenics (RALLT).

“Bayer-Monsanto: Get Out of Chile”, was the slogan on banners in Santiago on May 19 during the “March against Monsanto” protest, which took place in 30 cities around the world for an agriculture without pesticides and against the use of genetically modified seeds.

Just a few days earlier, the Bayer pharmaceutical consortium had been ordered to pay more than $2 billion to a couple in the United States who claimed to have had cancer due to the use of Roundup, a herbicide developed by Bayer’s subsidiary, Monsanto.

Critical voices grow in Chile

About 50 kilometers south of Santiago are two of the largest seed production plants in Chile. In September 2018, after the purchase of Monsanto, Bayer CropScience announced the modernization of the Viluco plant, the only factory that produces vegetable seeds in South America and one of the company’s three largest factories worldwide.

“We want to modernize the technology and processes, so that the factory reaches the standards of the factories in the Netherlands and the United States,” said Yuri Charme of Bayer CropScience. The project, called “Satisfaction of demand”, aims to increase seed production by 20% so that Chile can meet 70% of demand in the region in the near future.

Chile is the largest seed exporter in the southern hemisphere. According to figures from the Federation of Seed Producers (ChileBio), the country exported seeds worth $338.5 million in 2016/2017, a fifth of which were GM. One of the advantages of having a seed business in Chile is that when it is winter in Europe, there it is summer.

GM plant pollen contaminates local seeds

The vegetable seed that is processed at the factory in Viluco represents, so far, a small part of the seed exports. Far more important are corn, soybeans and rapeseed. These are processed in another factory, a few kilometers south of Viluco, in the rural community of Paine. There, the majority of the population subsists from agriculture. Already in 2016, before the merger with Bayer,

 » Lees verder

Genetically Modified Seeds in India: Faking it on the Astroturf – Global Research

genetically-modified-seeds-in-india:-faking-it-on-the-astroturf-–-global-research

12-01-20 03:39:00,

According to a recent report in The Hindu Business Line, India’s intelligence agencies are investigating the role of a global investment company and international seed companies in supporting farmers organisation Shetkari Sanghatana (SS) in the distribution of illegally procured genetically modified (GM) herbicide tolerant (HT) cotton seeds. The planting of such seeds is an offence under the Environment Protection Act and Seeds Act.

In May 2019, SS broke the law and freely distributed these seeds. In early January 2020, it broke the law again by distributing second generation seeds. According to the report, a senior intelligence official had told Business Line that a global investment company, with investments in seeds and agrochemicals companies, has chosen to support the farmers’ organisation.

Business Line reports that the investment company is allegedly putting pressure on the Modi government to ensure that the Genetic Engineering Appraisal Committee fast tracks the clearance of HT seeds, so the seeds could be legally harvested and sold in the country.

In India, five high-level reports have advised against the adoption of GM crops. Appointed by the Supreme Court, the ‘Technical Expert Committee (TEC) Final Report’ (2013) was scathing about the prevailing regulatory system and highlighted its inadequacies and serious inherent conflicts of interest. The TEC recommended a 10-year moratorium on the commercial release of all GM crops.

The reason why Bt cotton – to date, India’s only officially approved GM crop – made it into farmers’ fields in the first place was due to ‘approval by contamination’. Bt cotton was discovered in 2001 growing on thousands of hectares in Gujarat. In March 2002, it was approved for commercial cultivation.

The pro-GMO lobby has again resorted to such tactics. The 2010 moratorium on Bt brinjal was implemented because science won out against a regulatory process that lacked competency, possessed endemic conflicts of interest and demonstrated a lack of expertise in GM risk assessment protocols, including food safety assessment and the assessment of environmental impacts.

As we have seen with the relentless push to get GM mustard commercialised, the problems persist. Now, to justify breaking the law, we are seeing unscientific claims and well-worn industry-inspired soundbites about GM crops: political posturing unsupported by evidence to try to sway the policy agenda in favour of GM.

 » Lees verder

The modified face of the Levant

the-modified-face-of-the-levant

27-10-19 12:17:00,

In Lebanon, banks have been closed for 10 days. Cash dispensers are empty. A wave of protests is sweeping the country. All roads are blocked. One can only take back roads, if known. Beirut airport is inaccessible.

In Iraq, protests have resumed, particularly in Shia areas. In the past month, the crackdown left more than 200 people dead. As in the case of Lebanon since 1943, Iraq since 2005 has a constitution which distributes power according to religious affiliation. This system was designed by the colonizers to maintain these countries in a state of dependency despite their official independence.

In Syria, provisioning via Lebanon has been suspended due to the interruption of the Beirut-Damascus axis. However, the country is self-sufficient in terms of food and commercial traffic with Turkey has been restored, with new products already reaching the markets in Aleppo.

 » Lees verder

Genetically Modified Bt Brinjal Aubergine Illegally Growing in India: Who Is Really Pulling the Strings? | Asia-Pacific Research

genetically-modified-bt-brinjal-aubergine-illegally-growing-in-india-who-is-really-pulling-the-strings-asia-pacific-research

28-04-19 03:16:00,

In February 2010, the Indian government placed an indefinite moratorium on the commercial release of Bt brinjal. (Genetically Modified Aubergine or EggPlant) Prior to this decision, numerous independent scientists from India and abroad had pointed out safety concerns regarding Bt brinjal based on data and reports in the biosafety dossier that Mahyco, the crop developer, had submitted to the regulators.

Campaigner Aruna Rodrigues explains

“The then Minister of the Ministry of Environment and Forests Jairam Ramesh instituted a unique four-month scientific enquiry and public hearings. His decision to reject the commercialisation of Bt brinjal was supported by advice he received from several renowned international scientists. Their collective appraisals demonstrated serious environmental and biosafety concerns, which included issues regarding the toxity of Bt proteins resulting from their mode of action on the human gut system.”

She went on to say that India is a centre of origin of brinjal with the greatest genetic diversity and that contamination was a certainty. Rodrigues added:

“In his summing-up of the unsustainability of Bt brinjal and of its implications if introduced, one of the experts involved, Professor Andow, said it posed several unique challenges because the likelihood of resistance evolving quickly is high. He added that without any management of resistance evolution, Bt brinjal is projected to fail in 4-12 years.”

Jairam Ramesh pronounced a moratorium on Bt brinjal in February 2010 founded on what he called “a cautious, precautionary principle-based approach.” The moratorium is still in place and has not been lifted.

Despite this, the illegal cultivation of Bt brinjal has recently been discovered in the state of Haryana. In response, the Coalition for a GM Free India held a press conference in Delhi on 25 April 2019 demanding immediate action from state and central governments.

Afsar Jafri, agriculture trade policy analyst, argued that there was good reason why India opted to impose an indefinite moratorium on Bt brinjal and that all the environmental and health hazards acknowledged at the time continue to remain intact.

Kapil Shah, founder of Jatan Trust in Gujarat, said:

“This is clearly a failure of concerned government agencies that illegal Bt brinjal is being cultivated in the country.

 » Lees verder

Genetically Modified Babies. The Genetic Editing of Human Life – Global Research

genetically-modified-babies.-the-genetic-editing-of-human-life-8211-global-research

28-04-19 07:46:00,

Last November, He Jiankui, a Chinese biology Associate Professor at the Southern University of Science and Technology (SUST) in Shenzhen (Guangdong Province) announced that he and his team had created the World’s first “genetically edited babies”: twin babies Lula and Nana.

Dr. He Jiankui, used the CRISPR technology “to alter the embryos of seven couples [allegedly] to make them resistant to HIV”.  He Jiankui made his announcement at the Second International Summit on Human Genome Editing held at the University of Hong Kong.  

Dr. He claims to have used CRISP “to tweak the DNA of human embryos during in vitro fertilization”. 

The broad implications of this experiment are far-reaching. The genetic editing of human life forms including embryos has a bearing on the future of humanity.

It opens up the pandora’s box of genetic engineering applied to human beings.

Potentially, it destroys humanity.

Screenshot Source Nature News Carl Zimmer

The experiment raises important scientific and ethical issues. The Chinese government immediately opened an investigation, Dr He Jiankui was fired by his University in January 2019.

Corporate Interests: Genetic Editing is “Big Business”

Despite government regulations and ethical issues, there are powerful corporate interests involved in the development and patenting of genetic editing of life forms including Dr. He’s findings on “genetically modified babies”.

While Dr. He’s University based lab biology project at SUST has been closed down, he nonetheless remains Chairman and  major stakeholder of the Shenzhen based Direct Genomics Biotechnology, “a genome sequencing” firm, with extensive financial resources.  Direct Genomics received at least US$43 million in funding from both Chinese and international investors:

“… The funding was led by Shenzhen Cosun Venture Capital Investment Management, a venture capital firm owned by Shenzhen-listed Coship Electronics and Chen Libei, an executive of state-backed Fortune Capital. … 

Other investors include Beijing Xiyi Asset Management, which has only one venture capital deal – Direct Genomics – since its inception in 2016 on public record. …

In November 2016, Direct Genomics received an undisclosed amount of funding from three investors – Beijing Tengye Venture Capital,

 » Lees verder