Female inmates sterilized in California prisons without approval, Guatemalan syphilis victims lose hope in legal battle against US, Milford’s newest Living Treasure is a military hero and a knight

July 12, 2013 Comments Off on Female inmates sterilized in California prisons without approval, Guatemalan syphilis victims lose hope in legal battle against US, Milford’s newest Living Treasure is a military hero and a knight

– Female inmates sterilized in California prisons without approval
– Guatemalan syphilis victims lose hope in legal battle against US
– Milford’s newest Living Treasure is a military hero and a knight

Female inmates sterilized in California prisons without approval
Jul 07, 2013 Corey G. Johnson

Doctors under contract with the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation sterilized nearly 150 female inmates from 2006 to 2010 without required state approvals, The Center for Investigative Reporting has found.

At least 148 women received tubal ligations in violation of prison rules during those five years – and there are perhaps 100 more dating back to the late 1990s, according to state documents and interviews.

From 1997 to 2010, the state paid doctors $147,460 to perform the procedure, according to a database of contracted medical services for state prisoners.

The women were signed up for the surgery while they were pregnant and housed at either the California Institution for Women in Corona or Valley State Prison for Women in Chowchilla, which is now a men’s prison.

Former inmates and prisoner advocates maintain that prison medical staff coerced the women, targeting those deemed likely to return to prison in the future….

California still grapples with an ugly past: Under compulsory sterilization laws here and in 31 other states, minority groups, the poor, the disabled, the mentally ill and criminals were singled out as inferior and sterilized to prevent them from spreading their genes.

It was known as eugenics.

Between 1909 and 1964, about 20,000 women and men in California were stripped of the ability to reproduce – making the state the nation’s most prolific sterilizer. Historians say Nazi Germany sought the advice of the state’s eugenics leaders in the 1930s….
http://cironline.org/reports/female-inmates-sterilized-california-prisons-without-approval-4917

Guatemalan syphilis victims lose hope in legal battle against US
Thousands of Guatemalans were intentionally infected with STDs in the 1940s by US public health researchers. An appeal on their case against the US government was dismissed this week.

By Romina Ruiz-Goriena, Contributor  June 14, 2013

As a nine-year-old child, Marta recalled seeing her name on a list to go to the doctor’s office. An orphan, she had been living in the National Education Center since the age of six.

Before long, she would be prodded and poked every week for a year, receiving shots in her hip and shoulder, and having blood drawn.

“My mother tells us that she would ask over and over again, ‘why are you doing this if I am not even sick?'” says Luis Estuardo Vasquez Orellana, one of Marta Lidia Orellana Guerra’s five children. His mother, who is still alive today, also underwent unnecessary back surgery and was left to rest hanging upside down on and off in post-surgery recovery for months.

It was 1946, and Ms. Orellana was one of thousands of Guatemalans who were unwittingly subjected to secret human experiments led by US doctors.

The experiments were brought to light by a US researcher in 2009, and a legal battle on behalf of victims and their families ensued. But now, nearly three years after beginning the legal battle in US courts, attorneys representing an estimated 5,000 Guatemalan victims used as guinea pigs and infected with sexually transmitted diseases in the 1940s by US public health researchers withdrew their appeal earlier this week, virtually ending the case against the US government…..

The dismissal comes a year after a US District Court ruled the United States was protected under two immunity laws, the Federal Tort Claims Act and the International Organization Immunities Act.

“We pulled out rather than prolong litigation,” says Christian Levesque, an attorney with DC-based Conrad & Scherer LLP who is working on the case. “At this time it is more appropriate to pursue political redress.” Pursuing justice for these victims in the US could include reparations through lobbying Congress.

The alleged victims include soldiers, inmates, sex workers, mental health patients, and schoolchildren. Of these, some 1,300 were deliberately infected with syphilis and other sexually transmitted diseases.
http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Americas/2013/0614/Guatemalan-syphilis-victims-lose-hope-in-legal-battle-against-US

Milford’s newest Living Treasure is a military hero and a knight
By Milford Mirror Staff on July 10, 2013
….Before all this, military life absorbed Muth. He volunteered to become a “victim” of government experiments on brainwashing techniques, both physical and chemical.

These experiments were authorized by the Department of Defense, orchestrated by Army Intelligence, funded by the CIA and conducted by the Army Chemical Corps, according to documents. The programs and experiments were so risky that several of the 7,800 men who were test subjects died.

According to online documentation, the research programs at issue concentrated at the Army’s facilities at the Edgewood Arsenal and Fort Detrick, Md., allegedly tested more than 400 different chemical and biological substances during five decades in locations throughout the U.S. and abroad, and involved an estimated 100,000 active duty military personnel.

“I was one of the fortunate ones who was able to lead a normal life, raise normal children and enjoy my career and family, although I have permanent physical disabilities that are attributable to my military career,” Muth said, though he declined to specify or elaborate on those disabilities.

Muth received an honorable discharge from the Army in 1959. The experiments were so secret, however, that it wasn’t until the spring of 2004, some 45 years later, that a former high-ranking government official who participated in administration of these experiments acknowledged his contributions….

A Government Accounting Office report in 1994, which the Mirror obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request, acknowledged that during Word War II and the Cold War era, the Department of Defense and other national security agencies conducted or sponsored extensive radiological, chemical and biological research programs. Part of the report states:

“The effects of the tests and experiments are often difficult to determine. Although some participants suffered immediate acute injuries and some died, in other cases adverse health problems were not discovered until many years later — often 20 to 30 years or longer.”

The Edgewood vets have in recent years sued the government and expect to go to trial in October….
http://www.milfordmirror.com/7709/milfords-newest-living-treasure-is-a-military-hero-and-a-knight/

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