It’s all there in today’s Wall Street Journal:
Just months after rushing to order enough swine-flu vaccine to protect their citizens, European governments are canceling orders and trying to sell or give away extra doses as they sit on a glut of the vaccine.
The main reason: European health officials decided that only one shot per person was needed, instead of the two originally planned.
Actually, there may have been another reason, as announced in the headline of the Czech Republic’s largest-circulation mainstream paper Mladá fronta dnes: Expert: Swine flu pandemic is a swindle by the pharmaceutical companies.
That’s right, it is alleged their profits were not all that they should be, so the drug companies manufactured a crisis to pump up sales revenue by at least millions. But who is the “expert” making this claim? His name is Wolfgang Wodarg, and he is chairman of the Health Committee of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe. (Note: that has no direct connection to the European Union, it’s a completely separate – in fact, earlier – organization. I know, it’s confusing . . .) And it seems that that Parliamentary Assembly will debate this question later this month, so maybe we’ll hear more about it then and become better able to judge.
Fortunately, the MFD article cited another piece giving all the details in the UK’s Daily Mail, so you can read about them there. But it also links to an article it published itself (i.e. in the Czech paper MFD) last July, about how the prominent Czech politician (and former Minister for Health) David Rath was also of the opinion that swine flu was just some sort of fraud for the benefit of the drug companies.
UPDATE: And indeed, French president Sarkozy’s house-newspaper Le Figaro is now announcing that the swine-flu epidemic there (known as “H1N1”) is over, according to an organization of French doctors called Réseau [i.e. network] Sentinelles France. At the same time, the article’s author (mysteriously known only as “C.J.”) says that it’s still recommended that one get immunized – the disease “could know a rebound.”