Tuesday, September 11th 2012, 1:54 AM EDT
“If you plan to destroy test fields to prevent responsible testing and development of Golden Rice for humanitarian purposes, you will be accused of contributing to a crime against humanity. Your actions will be carefully registered and you will, hopefully, have the opportunity to defend your illegal and immoral actions in front of an international court.” -- Dr. Ingo Potrykus to Greenpeace, February 2001
The Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court defines “crimes against humanity” as acts that are “committed as part of a widespread or systematic attack directed against any civilian population, with knowledge of the attack - intentionally causing great suffering, or serious injury to body or to mental or physical health.”<!--[if !supportFootnotes]-->
According to the World Health Organization between 250,000 to 500,000 children become blind every year due to vitamin A deficiency, half of whom die within a year of becoming blind. Millions of other people suffer from various debilitating conditions due to the lack of this essential nutrient.<!--[if !supportFootnotes]-->
Golden Rice is a genetically modified form of rice that, unlike conventional rice, contains beta-Carotene in the rice kernel. Beta-Carotene is converted to vitamin A in humans and is important for eyesight, the immune system, and general good health.<!--[if !supportFootnotes]--><!--[endif]--> Swiss scientist and humanitarian Dr. Ingo Potrykus and his colleagues developed Golden Rice in 1998. It has been demonstrated in numerous studies that golden rice can eliminate vitamin A deficiency.<!--[if !supportFootnotes]-->
Greenpeace and its allies have successfully blocked the introduction of golden rice for over a decade, claiming it may have “environmental and health risks” without ever elaborating on what those risks might be. After years of effort the Golden Rice Humanitarian Project, led by Dr. Potrykus, The Rockefeller Foundation and others were unable to break through the political opposition to golden rice that was generated directly by Greenpeace and its followers.<!--[if !supportFootnotes]-->
Recently the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has taken a lead role, in collaboration with the International Rice Research Institute in the Philippines, in breaking through these barriers and bringing Golden Rice to market.<!--[if !supportFootnotes]--><!--[endif]--> Field trials are now underway in the Philippines and Bangladesh with the hope of introducing it to the market by 2015. Since the invention of Golden Rice in 1998 between four million and 8 million additional children have become blind, nearly half of whom have already died. Surely this constitutes “great suffering, or serious injury to body or to mental or physical health.” Greenpeace continues to oppose these field trials.<!--[if !supportFootnotes]-->
Greenpeace has openly and aggressively spread misinformation about Golden Rice since it was first invented and has continued to do so at every opportunity.<!--[if !supportFootnotes]--><!--[endif]--> <!--[if !supportFootnotes]--><!--[endif]--> <!--[if !supportFootnotes]--><!--[endif]--> They claim that there are better ways to alleviate vitamin A deficiency, such as vitamin pills and “home gardening”. Yet Greenpeace is doing nothing to implement alternative programs for the millions of victims, claiming the cause of vitamin A deficiency is “poverty”. One might ask if purposefully condemning millions of children to blindness and early death perpetuates poverty rather than alleviating it. Academies of Science around the world endorse the use of biotechnology, including genetic modification, to improve the nutrition and productivity of our food crops.<!--[if !supportFootnotes]--><!--[endif]--> There is zero evidence of any possible harm from these improvements.
It is clear by the facts that Greenpeace is guilty of crimes against humanity as defined by the International Criminal Court. They claim that “Golden Rice is a failure” while they are the ones responsible for preventing the cure that is so desperately needed by millions of civilians. The fact that Greenpeace perpetuate lies about Golden Rice while at the same time doing nothing to solve the problem themselves constitutes gross negligence on top of the crime against humanity. Will someone please bring them to justice?
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