Indonesian BioWarfare

The Indonesian government, in an ongoing attempt to extort wealth from the civilized world, has moved on from eco-terrorism to a particularly vile form of biological warfare, the withholding critical samples of the H5N1 Avian Influenza virus. Indonesia’s President, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and their Health Minister, Siti Fadilah Supari have refused to release any samples of H5N1 until Indonesia is guaranteed “compensation” from the Developed Nations and the pharmaceutical industry.

Yudhoyono and Supari have forewarned the World Health Organization (WHO) that no samples of Indonesian H5N1 will be provided to anyone for vaccine creation unless their demands are met. These demands include drugmakers GlaxoSmithKline Plc and Novartis AG to provide Indonesia with unlimited free pandemic-flu shots and pay for the construction of vaccine plants in Indonesia.

President Yudhoyono has had the unbelievable and unmitigated gall to describe this extortion as fair.

Indonesia is willing to resume sharing of bird flu virus samples only if nations agree on a fair and equitable framework. We certainly need to form a partnership with WHO and friendly nations … we can only proceed if we agree on building and implementing a fair cooperation framework.

There is a misunderstanding among foreign nations that Indonesia won’t cooperate, as if Indonesia won’t share its virus samples … but concrete cooperation has to be based on fairness.

Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono
Indonesian President

Meanwhile Indonesia’s Health Minister, Siti Fadilah Supari published – with the endorsement of Pres. Yudhoyono – a disturbing book, It’s Time for the World to Change – The Divine Hand Behind Avian Influenza. In it she made the spurious claim that the United States was behind a conspiracy to use the bird flu virus to develop biological weapons.

She also wrote that Indonesia’s uniquely virulent strain of H5N1 gave the country “bargaining power.” Yes, I suppose potentially holding the lives of a conservatively estimated 7.4 million people for ransom gives a rogue nation such as Indonesia a certain bargaining power.

I truly think it’s past time to shift our focus away from Iran, who are easily containable and do not pose an immediate threat, and to rogue states such as Indonesia. The US could do the civilized world a far greater benefit by intervening in Indonesia than it ever could by destabilizing Iran. It is possible that currettment might well be necessary.

Related Reading:

All About Indonesia: Stories, Songs, Crafts and Games for Kids
H5N1: Code Name: Greed
New York Times Deadly Invaders: Virus Outbreaks Around the World, from Marburn Fever to Avian Flu
Insight Guides Indonesia
Lonely Planet Bali & Lombok (Travel Guide)

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2 Responses to “Indonesian BioWarfare”

  1. HannahJ Says:

    Ouch.

    I suppose the only good thing about this is that H5N1 hasn’t become quite as infectious (% transmission-wise) as such germs as cold viruses.

  2. jonolan Says:

    Welcome, HannahJ!

    Thankfully H5N1 is not particularly communicable between humans yet. They have found cross infection in pigs recently though, with the normal mutations involved in such things. Since pigs can contract both avian and human influenza strains, we’re on the doorstep of having a human passable H5N1 variant.

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