Thursday, March 07, 2013

The Purveyor of Scientific Truths


Prof. AbuKhalil seems to credit the recent conspiracy theory about the death of Hugo Chavez with not only possibility but likelihood.* Here is his justification for thinking so:

In theory, carcinogens ... can be applied as a weapon. Carcinogens are employed in experimental animals to study cancer initiation and progression. However, cancers take a (long) while to develop, and the impact of using a carcinogen cannot be carefully targeted. If applied in large doses, they can cause cancer development in multiple tissues. These uncertainties limit their usefulness as an assassination tool (if it is going to take a few years for someone to die as a consequence of their use, then they would be too blunt of an instrument).



Far more useful and clever to my mind has been the use of Polonium 210 as an assassination tool. It is difficult to detect and decays naturally over time. Arafat was probably assassinated that way.



BTW, Chavez was a heavy smoker, which is a risk factor for cancer. His cancer was reported to be pelvic, although its exact provenance remains unknown. It has been speculated that it could be a bowel cancer.



Of course, a conspiracy theory for Chavez demise has its roots in his targeting by the US early on. The 2002 coup against him was an intrinsic component of the Bush administration quest to control oil producing countries as part of its overall aim for American hegemony in the 21st century. That coup failed, but the invasion of Iraq followed. This month is the 10th anniversary of that catastrophe."

 

I then asked him if it is possible that the government science of assassination is ahead of civilian medical science, and he wrote:

 

"Of course there are methods of assassination that must have been developed as part of programatic efforts to improve the practice of assassination. The polonium 210 and the ricin assassinations (most likely KGB and FSB, respectively) and the case of Khaled Mishal (Mossad) most likely reflect such programs. I am sure the Americans have their own. The science of such assassinations is however relies on known properties of the agents involved, not some secret unknown effects that no one in the scientific community knows about."
 I think it is obvious from this exchange how eager AbuKhalil is to have this conspiracy theory credited with scientific truth.Consider how his interlocutor ("a comrade") is equally eager to lend some plausibility to this outlandish proposition, relying on a non-fact for his "scientific"explanation. Which explains why the prof. contacted him for enlightenment in the first place.

However, I'm a little puzzled as to why AbuKhalil attributes such progressive methods and knowledge to Israel's Mossad (for who else could have done the deed?) after reassuring his readers time and again of how dumb the Mossad is?

This is a teacher of some academic stature, entrusted by the American Ministry of Education to teach young minds how to collect information, think critically and rationally and grow in understanding and knowledge.

* A possibility is  a thing that may happen or be the case. A likelihood is almost certainty. A subtle difference but not that subtle to a trader in words of Angry Arab's ilk.

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