A Case of German Measles

The Viral Challenge

In the fall of 2011, dissident German virologist Dr. Stefan Lanka put out a challenge. He claims that no scientific paper has proven the existence of disease-causing viruses. Lanka offered 100,000 euros to anyone who could prove, with a scientific study, the existence of the measles virus, its measurement, and that does not rely on “modeling” (in which the scientist imagines what a virus might look like). A fresh-faced 27-year-old medical student named David Bardens accepted the challenge.

Bardens sent Lanka not one but six publications purporting to prove the existence of measles. However, Lanka dismissed Bardens, claiming the papers did not give satisfactory confirmation and refused to pay out the money. As a result the medical student sued Lanka in the District Court of Ravensburg. In 2015 he won.

The trial against the “vaccine denier” and “measles skeptic” Lanka received worldwide coverage including the BBC, The Guardian, The LA Times and Time, among others. The Local, a Swedish publication, called it a “huge measles court case win”. They quoted Bardens, by then a fledgling doctor,

“At first I thought it was very, very unusual that somebody wanted to pay out money for something that’s already proven. Over 30,000 people have researched measles,” Dr. Bardens told Swedish medical magazine Dagens Medicin

Indeed, it is curious. Why would a well-established virologist open himself up to ridicule and professional destruction for something that has been supposedly exhaustively “proven”?

Lanka appealed the decision, and in February 2016 won his appeal in the Higher Regional Court of Stuttgart (OLG Stuttgart). So the measles virus doesn’t exist, right? Unfortunately the story is not as clear cut as it seems. Let us take a closer look.

In Measles We Believe

Dr. Lanka’s challenge put the establishment in a predicament. How do you maintain credibility in science and a belief in viruses?

The lower court decided in favor of Dr. Bardens based on the aforementioned six studies. However, these were not rigorous scientific papers offering no controlled experiments crucial to any respectable scientific study. In the minutes of the court proceedings (original German) of that first trial, dated April 2015, which awarded Bardens the win, expert witness Dr. Andreas Podbielski said (p. 7)

I cannot say now whether there is an article that comprehensively represents the same things as the original articles mentioned, without showing their methodological weaknesses, for example with the negative controls that are indeed missing. In this context I would like to point out again that certain parts of the experimental setup in the original articles from ’54 and ’58 certainly have a certain control function. (Google Translate)

In other words, according to the German New Medicine website (where you will also find a good summary of the whole saga)

. . . even though the existence of the measles virus could be concluded from the summary of the six papers submitted by Dr. Bardens, none of the authors had conducted any controlled experiments in accordance with internationally defined rules and principles of good scientific practice (see also the method of “indirect evidence”). Professor Podbielski considers this lack of control experiments explicitly as a “methodological weakness” of these publications, which are after all the relevant studies on the subject (there are no other publications trying to attempt to prove the existence of the “measles virus”). Thus, at this point, a publication about the existence of the measles virus that stands the test of good science has yet to be delivered.

It is interesting that in such a “huge measles court case” all virus apologists could come up with were six papers put forth by a student, and which did not meet even basic scientific standards because they were merely reviews of the other studies. So the question becomes why didn’t Bardens submit the original scientific ’54 and ’58 papers? This is where his youth and student status comes in handy. Had a seasoned virologist put forth the six studies in the trial papers their reputation and that of the virology establishment would have been in question, for how could an experienced professional not know that those papers were did not meet “principles of good scientific practice”? But for a young naive student with no reputation to uphold it is forgivable.

The implication here is striking. Despite Dr. Podbielski’s testimony, neither the District Court of Ravensburg nor the Higher Regional Court of Stuttgart rejected the “science” on virology. Podbielski, for his part, says he was commenting on the papers presented at trial and not on the existence of viruses. Indeed Dr. Podbielski is still a believer. Like a good religion, the lack of proof of the existence of viruses is a minor detail that need not infringe upon one’s preference of gods.

Stuck on Viruses

Despite the poor showing for team virus, both the lower court and the OLG Stuttgart, as We mentioned, did not dispute their existence. Why then did the OLG Stuttgart court award Lanka his appeal? As Africa Check points out, the higher court “did say Lanka’s challenge was neither a bet nor a competition but an award. And only the promoter of the award, Lanka, could determine the rules and decide if its criteria had been met.” This ignores Lanka’s stipulation for scientific rigor.

Africa Check goes on to say in support of germ theory, “according to DAZ online [a pharmaceutical journal], the presiding judge suggested that “they could also have submitted 600 [studies], he would have accepted none”. But that’s the point. They had their chance. Would any of those papers have shown the existence of the measles virus? Perhaps not, otherwise Dr. Lanka would not have offered up his a highly publicized challenge.

But we are told by the OLG Stuttgart in their judgment (para. 20) that — and here is where things get convoluted and contradictory —

A single publication was . . . required, in which both the proof of the existence of the measles virus and its diameter were determined, so that it would not be sufficient if — as represented by the expert [Dr. Podbielski] — only the combination of the scientific statements in the six presented Professional articles prove the existence of the measles virus and at least two of these articles contained sufficient information on the diameter of the measles virus. (Google translate.)

Like expert witness Dr. Podbielski, Dr. Steven Novella, an academic clinical neurologist at Yale University School of Medicine in a post supporting the decision against Lanka also claims that more than one study is necessary to establish viruses:

The existence of viruses is also largely determined through inference. Most viruses are too small to see even through a microscope, and they can’t be easily grown in a dish like bacteria. Viruses are identified through isolating antibodies to them, isolating viral proteins, demonstrating biochemical activity, demonstrating disease activity, and eventually taking electron micrographs of viral particles. Taken together this evidence can be absolutely definitive, but the denier can continue to argue that the evidence is all indirect or mistaken.

Inference is not proof. If Dr. Novella is serious then the existence of viruses is at best a theory. But the six papers presented at trial purported to have actually isolated measles independently, or confirm previous attempts. Lets look at one of them Bech V, Magnus Pv. Studies on Measles Virus in Monkey Kidney Tissue Cultures. Acta Pathol Microbiol Scand. 1959; 42(1): 75–85.

We have hightlighed relevant passages in the pdf therein and list them here:

  • In 1954 Enders & Peebles (6) reported the successful isolation of virus-like agents from blood and throat washings of patients with measles. (p75)
  • The present paper reports the isolation of five strains of measles virus (p75)
  • Virus was recovered from the throat of five of these patients, in 2 instances from cotton swabs (Nos. 1 and 11) and in two cases from throat washings (p76)
  • Virus was recovered from the blood in only one out of eight attempts made within 24 hours after the onset of the rash. This isolation rate is low compared with that obtained by Enders & Peebles (6) who recovered virus from the blood of four out of five patients. (p83)

And finally from the summary we read:

(1) Virus agents have been isolated in trypsinized monkey kidney
tissue cultures from throat washings and blood from 5 out of 13 patients
examined during the acute phase of measles. In all instances,
virus was isolated from throat washings or throat swabs while only
one strain was recovered from the blood. All attempts to isolate virus
later than 24 hours after onset of the rash failed. (p84)

Virus isolation sound pretty definitive in this one paper, except that “all attempts to isolate virus later than 24 hours after onset of the rash failed.” And as we’ve seen per Dr. Podbielski’s testimony that none of these papers rises to an acceptable level of scientific standard. Furthermore, if none of the papers individually can prove the virus how can it be that “at least two of these articles contained sufficient information on the diameter of the measles virus”?

The OLG court agreed (para. 20),

Otherwise, the content of the publications submitted did not meet the requirements for evidence. The phenomena reported therein as measles viruses are actually cell-specific transport vesicles (vesicles). None of the documentation submitted is based on attempts in which the pathogen — as required — had previously been isolated and biochemically characterized or even such isolation had been scientifically documented. The type of evidence used in the experiments to which the plaintiff relies does not correspond to the state of the art in science and technology and does not correspond to the requirements for evidence taking into account K[och]’s postulates [to establish virus isolation]. . . . The determination of the diameter was also not well founded. The size range of 300 to 1000 nm specified in one of the publications presented already contradicts the thesis of the virus, because viruses were characterized by a slight variation in their diameter between 15 and a maximum of 400 nm. Incidentally, information from the RKI [Robert Koch Institute] dated January 24, 2012 shows that the diameter of measles viruses should be 120 – 400 nm and that there are often ribosomes inside, although the latter would prevent the existence of a measles virus. (Google translate)

Yet the OLG Stuttgart court ignores all this (para. 104)

The regional court’s assessment of the evidence that the expert opinion obtained had shown that the publications submitted by the [Bardens] plaintiff as a whole proved the existence and pathogenicity of the measles virus and that the diameter had been successfully determined in the form requested by the [Lanka] defendant not objectionable in the result. (Google translate)

Understandably, the First Civil Senate of the German Federal Court of Justice (Germany’s supreme court) refused to get involved and affirmed the OLG Stuttgart judgment.

At best one can say that the science on viruses is still being figured out, and most likely is a fraud. Does that matter in this day of economic destruction and lockdowns headed by Gates and his ruling class cohorts?

Incidently, who is Africa Check? An impartial authority? They are an NGO claiming to be a “non-profit organisation set up in 2012 to promote accuracy in public debate and the media in Africa”, they tell us — rather sadistically. These are among its funders:

Do we really need to be going on with this “pandemic”?

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