World's Fair

…Which is a bit warped, because Muammar Gaddafi is resorting to the opinions of his own Libyan scientists, as oppose to the data presented by scientists from the Pasteur Institute and Tor Vergata University. This particular perspective might not sound so bad, except that it involves the execution of six medical workers (known as the Benghazi Six) otherwise innocent but caught in one very frightening political and possibly translational nightmare. I say political, because it would appear that the medical workers are scapegoats to save political face. And translational because even jargon seems to be taking a whole different form here:

But the court (based in Tripoli) threw out the report, arguing that an investigation by Libyan doctors had reached the opposite conclusion. Montagnier believes the judgement was based at least partly on mistranslation from English to Arabic of the term ‘recombinant’ — instead of referring to natural recombination of wild viruses, as intended, it was interpreted to mean genetically modified, implying human manipulation.

In any event, it also seems that there has been only small action at the international stage to help these 6 individuals. This, of course, is tantamount to a death sentence created by apathy. Let’s summarize with the antithesis of apathy – that is, a limmerick:

There once was a man named Gaddafi
Who wondered why those kids had HIV
Didn’t want to be blamed
So some medics he framed
And the world seems content to just let be.

And now that I’ve caught your attention: Get the details here in Declan’s piece in Nature, and join Declan, Paul, and others in getting the word out.

Earlier, I had griped about what it would take to get the message, any message out – ironically, this (involving HIV and all) is one case where viral marketing is certainly a worthy goal.


  1. #1 jenjen
    September 21, 2006

    Good post. Important too. And while I’m commenting, wouldn’t Nature be all the more impressive with the odd limerick or two.

  2. #2 harry
    September 22, 2006

    Didn’t know that limericks are the antithesis of apathy. Is this something that is common knowledge in business and/or leadership skill conventions?

    Seriously though, will help spread the word as well.