What Media Hid in De Niro Autism Film Affair
By F. William Engdahl
Dr. Andrew Wakefield, a former British gastro-enterologist and vaccine researcher has been fully exonerated of the charges that he, together with a world renowned pediatric gastroenterologist, Prof. John Walker-Smith, conducted fraudulent tests with children that raised the possibility of a link between the popular MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) vaccine and onset of autism and other severe symptoms. Most remarkable is the fact that despite his de facto exoneration in a British Court more than four years ago, in 2012, mainstream media in the UK and the USA have chosen to deliberately ignore the fact. They did so to hide the explosive content of Wakefield’s film, Vaxxed.
This past April, Hollywood actor and founder of the Tribeca film festival, Robert de Niro, announced in an interview to the New York Times that he had personally arranged for a new documentary film, Vaxxed, about links between autism and vaccinations, to be shown on April 24 at his festival in order to open a national debate on the subject. Some 48 hours later the Tribeca website announced it had pulled the film. The pressure had been enormous. To his credit, some days later, on America’s most popular morning show, de Niro repeated his earlier statement that while he is not anti-vaccine, he wants an open debate on the subject. De Niro’s own son is autistic.
At the time I wrote my article, I was not aware that a British Court some four years ago completely exonerated Wakefield’s co-author and researcher in the autism study. Since then a helpful reader has pointed me to the entire text of the Court decision. I’ve decided to write this follow-up in the interest of justice to Andrew Wakefield, whom I’ve personally met and whose moral courage going up against the pharma lobby against all normal odds we owe a debt to. I do it also in support of Robert de Niro’s call for an open debate on the question of links between not only autism and vaccines. Had our “mainstream” media not been long ago polluted with the toxic waste of the pharma industry, and had they maintained a scintilla of honest journalism today, such an account would not have been necessary.
In February, 2012, Mr. Justice Mitting held hearings on the charges brought against world renowned pediatric gastro-enterologist, Prof. John Walker-Smith, Wakefield’s co-researcher, in Britain’s High Court of Justice, Queen’s Bench Division, Administrative Court.
The Justice ruled that charges brought against Walker-Smith by the British General Medical Council’s Panel, the GMC “panel’s determination cannot stand. I therefore quash it.” Walker-Smith won his appeal against a General Medical Council regulatory board that had ruled against both him and Andrew Wakefield for their roles in authoring a 1998 Lancet MMR paper, which raised questions about a link to autism. The complete victory means that Walker-Smith has been returned to the status of a fully licensed physician…”