Ethiopia Moves to Poison Its Own Food Supply

Ethiopia GMO Moves to Poison Its Own Food Supply

By Brandon TurbevilleNatural Blaze

The latest country in Africa to approve GMO cultivation has recently announced its plan to begin cultivating both Bt Cotton and “biotech maize.” Ethiopia is approving the new genetically modified crop as growing expansion of GMOs threatens to overtake the African continent in what can only be described as Western corporate imperialism.

According to the International Service For The Acquisition Of Agri-Biotech Applications,

The Government of Ethiopia is the latest African country to authorize cultivation of biotech crops by granting two landmark approvals for environmental release of Bt cottonand research trials on biotech maize. In a letter signed by the Minister for Environment, Forest and Climate Change H.E. Gamado Dale to the Ethiopian Institute of Agricultural Research (Applicant), the country will start with two Bt cotton hybrids: JKCH1050 and JKCH1947. The release for Bt cotton is based on experts’ analysis of the results from two-season confined field trials conducted under the supervision of the Biosafety Affairs Directorate of Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate change and Biosafety technical working team drown from different institutions that have evaluated the final report submitted by the applicant. The Ethiopian government has identified cotton as a strategically important commodity crop to supply raw material for the rapidly growing textile sector and to generate thousands of jobs along the cotton sub-sector value chain.

On maize, the research institute will commence confined field trials of an event with stacked traits for droughttolerance and insect resistance in partnership with the African Agricultural Technology Foundation. The research permit is for five years.

Ethiopian researchers are also working closely with International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) on an enset bacterial wilt project, to develop resistant varieties through modern agricultural biotechnology. Enset, an Ethiopian banana also commonly known as the false banana, is a key food security crop. Enset can withstand long periods of drought, heavy rains, and flooding, which normally devastates other crops. However, bacterial wilt is devastating the crop, hence threatening food security for over 15 million people who depend on it as a staple food. Thirty years of research efforts by the national system to manage/control bacterial wilt of enset using conventional techniques could not succeed due to absence of resistant clones in the genetic base of the crop.

The West, meaning Western governments, particularly that of the United States, has long been working at the behest of major international corporations like Monsanto to not only allow but to promote and even in some cases force poor and struggling African nations to accept GMOs.

In December, 2010, Wikileaks released sizeable number of cables, about ten percent of which revealed that the US State Department was essentially acting as the marketing wing for biotech companies and “biotech” products across the world. The thousands of cables that were released spanned over 100 embassies and were, unfortunately, released just before Christmas. As a result, the story faded into the holiday madness.[1]

Thankfully, in 2013, the watchdog organization Food and Water Watch delved into the cables and released a report entitled “Biotech Ambassadors: How The U.S. State Department Promotes The Seed Industry’s Global Agenda.” According to Food and Water Watch, their study “reveals a concerted strategy to promote agricultural biotechnology overseas, compel countries to import biotech crops and foods they do not want, and lobby foreign governments — especially in the developing world — to adopt policies to pave the way to cultivate biotech crops.”[2]

Food and Water Watch wrote,

Food & Water Watch closely examined five years of State Department diplomatic cables from 2005 to 2009 to provide the first comprehensive analysis of the strategy, tactics and U.S. foreign policy objectives to foist pro-agricultural biotechnology policies worldwide. Food & Water Watch’s illuminating findings include:

The U.S. State Department’s multifaceted efforts to promote the biotechnology industry overseas: The State Department targeted foreign reporters, hosted and coordinated pro-biotech conferences and public events and brought foreign opinion-makers to the United States on high-profile junkets to improve the image of agricultural biotechnology overseas and overcome widespread public opposition to GE crops and foods.

The State Department’s coordinated campaign to promote biotech business interests: The State Department promoted not only pro-biotechnology policies but also the products of biotech companies. The strategy cables explicitly “protect the interests” of biotech exporters, “facilitate trade in agri-biotech products” and encourage the cultivation of GE crops in more countries, especially in the developing world.[3]

The State Department’s determined advocacy to press the developing world to adopt biotech crops: The diplomatic cables document a coordinated effort to lobby countries in the developing world to pass legislation and implement regulations favored by the biotech seed industry. This study examines the State Department lobbying campaigns in Kenya, Ghana and Nigeria to pass pro-biotech laws.

The State Department’s efforts to force other nations to accept biotech crop and food imports:The State Department works with the U.S. Trade Representative to promote the export of biotech crops and to force nations that do not want these imports to accept U.S. biotech foods and crops.[4]

FWW also provides a few Hillary quotes demonstrating the State Department’s push for GM crops worldwide such as her statements linking GMOs to solving “climate change” and world hunger.[5]

“We believe that biotechnology has a critical role to play in increasing agricultural productivity, particularly in light of climate change,” Clinton is quoted as stating.[6]

“[W]e want to shift our focus to agricultural sustainability, focusing on the small producers, helping them understand the value of GMOs — genetically modified organisms,” she also said while serving as Secretary of State.[7]

Clinton also extolled the virtues of GE technology upon her visit to Kenya when she stated that “With Kenya’s leadership in biotechnology and biosafety, we cannot only improve agriculture in Kenya, but Kenya can be leader for the rest of Africa.”[8]

While the FWW report can scarcely be dealt with in any reasonable detail within the scope of this article, it is recommended that the reader take advantage of the fact that it is freely available online at this link: http://documents.foodandwaterwatch.org/doc/Biotech_Report_US.pdf

It should be mentioned that, as Secretary of State, Hillary also helped promote the USAID –funded program “Feed the Future,” an initiative that promotes and introduces Round-up Ready®products all over the world. [9]

Yet, even as Hillary was acting as Monsanto and Big-Agra’s PR woman as Secretary of State, the Clinton Global Initiative was receiving sizeable donations from Monsanto and Dow Chemical. As Judy Frankel of the Huffington Post writes in her article “Hillary vs. Bernie On Frankenfood,”

How is Hillary personally involved in supporting big agriculture? The Clinton Global Initiative (CGI), which gathers leaders to solve the world’s problems, promotes Monsanto, the maker of RoundUp® and RoundUp Ready® seeds. Hugh Grant, Monsanto’s Chairman and CEO spoke at the Clinton Global Initiative conference in September, 2014. Ms. Clinton’s top campaign advisor, Jerry Crawford, was a lobbyist for Monsanto for years and is now the political pro for her Super PAC, “Ready for Hillary.”[10]Clinton spoke in favor of the government’s Feed the Future (FtF) program, a USAID funded, corporate-partnered program that brings RoundUp Ready® technology to the most vulnerable populations of the world.[11] Monsanto and Dow Chemical support Hillary and Bill’s ‘Clinton Foundation’ with generous donations.

Last year, at a San Diego biotech conference, Hillary coached her audience in messaging. “Genetically modified sounds Frankensteinish. Drought-resistant sounds like something you’d want. Be more careful so you don’t raise that red flag immediately.”

It’s also highly unlikely for Hillary Clinton to stand up against her benefactors, saying she favors a review of RoundUp, 2,4-D, and the even more toxic poisons used by farmers worldwide when she has friends in the industry telling her that they will “feed the world” someday with their agricultural methods. [12]

According to Stephen Lendman,

Monsanto gave the Clinton Foundation from half a million to one million dollars – Ag giant Dow Chemical from one to five million dollars, according to Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation disclosures.

Numerous other corporate giants contributed large sums. Expect them donating handsomely to Hillary’s presidential campaign. [13]

The Washington Times echoes Lendman’s claims by stating that “Monsanto gave the foundation between $501,250 and $1 million. Dow Chemical Company, which is among the top GMO players, gave between $1 million and $5 million, according to financial disclosures by the Clinton Foundation.”[14]

Current US President Donald Trump has also shown his support for GMOs, crowing about his “de-regulation” policy that would allow for new innovations in “biotechnology,” signaling there will only be more to come in regards to pushing GMOs not only on the American people but on the people of Africa as well.

While many African nations rightly imposed a ban on the cultivation of importation of GMOs in the past, the United States is doing everything it can to use its political, economic, and military power to bully them into accepting GMOs for the benefit of major international corporations who have already poisoned the American food supply so heavily.

At the end of the day, what else could Western food policy be called but Western corporate imperialism?

[1] Hatfield, Leslie. “New Analysis Of Wikileaks Shows State Department’s Promotion Of Monsanto’s GMOs Abroad.” Huffington Post. July 20, 2013. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/leslie-hatfield/new-analysis-of-wikileaks_b_3306842.htmlAccessed on September 1, 2015.

[2]  “Biotech Ambassadors: How The U.S. State Department Promotes The Seed Industry’s Global Agenda.” Food and Water Watch. May, 2013. http://documents.foodandwaterwatch.org/doc/Biotech_Report_US.pdf Accessed on September 1, 2015.

[3]  U.S. Department of State (U.S. DoS). “FY 2008 biotechnology outreach strategy and department resources.” Cable No. 07STATE160639. November 27, 2007.

[4] “Biotech Ambassadors: How The U.S. State Department Promotes The Seed Industry’s Global Agenda.” Food and Water Watch. May, 2013. http://documents.foodandwaterwatch.org/doc/Biotech_Report_US.pdf Accessed on September 1, 2015.

[5] Biotech Ambassadors: How The U.S. State Department Promotes The Seed Industry’s Global Agenda.” Food and Water Watch. May, 2013. http://documents.foodandwaterwatch.org/doc/Biotech_Report_US.pdf Accessed on September 1, 2015.

[6] U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee. Hearing on the President’s FY2009 War Supplemental Request. April 30, 2009.

[7] Lauritsen, Sharon Bomer, Executive Vice President of Food and Agriculture at BIO. Letter to Professeur De Schutter, the UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food. May 29, 2009 at 14.

[8] Clinton, Hillary. Remarks at the Kenya Agricultural Research Institute. August 5, 2009

[9] Biotech Ambassadors: How The U.S. State Department Promotes The Seed Industry’s Global Agenda.” Food and Water Watch. May, 2013. http://documents.foodandwaterwatch.org/doc/Biotech_Report_US.pdf Accessed on September 1, 2015.

[10] Jilani, Zaid. “Hillary’s Pick For Her Political Fixer In Iowa Is A Classic Illustration Of America’s Political Corporate Insider Problem.” Alter Net. March 9, 2015. http://www.alternet.org/news-amp-politics/hillarys-pick-her-political-fixer-iowa-classic-illustration-americas-political Accessed on September 2, 2015.

[11] Ishii-Eiteman, Marcia. “U.S. Looks To Monsanto To Feed The World.” Ground Truth. February 2, 2011. http://www.panna.org/blog/us-looks-monsanto-feed-world Accessed on September 2, 2015.

[12] Frankel, Judy. “Hillary Vs. Bernie On Frankenfood.” Huffington Post. June 23, 2015.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/judy-frankel/hillary-vs-bernie-on-fran_b_7638846.html Accessed on September 2, 2015.

[13] Lendman, Stephen. “Hillary Clinton Endorses GMOS. White House Meals Are Organic.” Global Research (Centre For Research On Globalization). May 25, 2015. http://www.globalresearch.ca/hillary-clinton-endorses-gmos-white-house-meals-are-organic/5451481 Accessed on September 1, 2015.

[14] “Hillary’s Agribusiness Ties Give Rise To Nickname In Iowa: ‘Bride Of Frankenfood.” Washington Times. May 17, 2015. http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2015/may/17/hillary-clinton-gmo-support-monsanto-ties-spark-ba/?page=1Accessed on September 2, 2015.

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brandonBrandon Turbeville – article archive here – is an author out of Florence, South Carolina. He is the author of six books, Codex Alimentarius — The End of Health Freedom7 Real Conspiracies,Five Sense Solutions and Dispatches From a Dissident, volume 1 and volume 2The Road to Damascus: The Anglo-American Assault on Syria,and The Difference it Makes: 36 Reasons Why Hillary Clinton Should Never Be President. Turbeville has published over 1,000 articles dealing on a wide variety of subjects including health, economics, government corruption, and civil liberties. Brandon Turbeville’s podcast Truth on The Tracks can be found every Monday night 9 pm EST at UCYTV. He is available for radio and TV interviews. Please contact activistpost (at) gmail.com.

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